Our Magnolia Lane - Are you okay there? - And I couldn't help but think about that guy at whole foods. He looked alot like Jesus. The smile, the hair, the way he practically sought me out, stopping in his own steps to check on me...I couldn't help but think, did he mean am I okay THERE?
Compassion - Spirituality is a way of life - Spirituality is a general way of life. Modern thought is patterned after Greek philosophy, and we tend to think in terms of compartments or categories. (Think of the way we write reports or present data). The Jewish way of thinking is holistic; to them, God was present in every situation of life. There is no separation between sacred and secular (Genesis 25:21–22).
Mustard Seed - Faithful Friday: David and Goliath - Any tactician will tell that the first thing you have to do to beat any enemy is to close the distance between you and them as quickly as possible. You do this so that they can’t use their longer ranged weapons against you. David did this perfectly. As Goliath started to move toward him, he ran at Goliath quickly. He got inside the effective range of Goliaths spear, and let loose a stone from his sling. The stone struck Goliath such force that it sunk into his head and killed him instantly. As I said David had never been trained as a warrior. He knew nothing of tactics. It was an action inspired and directed by the God of Abraham.
Red Letter Believers - Tell me anything but the truth - I realize a few things about myself. I am prone to exaggeration, to mood swings, and to manipulation. I will never be skinny, will probably frustrate those closest to me, and will not be a book writer. I'm sure friends and family can add to the list of painful truths.
As Red Letter Believers, we are called to honesty about everything -- even ourselves.
This Time Around - A coffee and some unfinished business - Too often I find myself thinking (and acting like) I have depleted any sort of compassion, good will, and/or “benefit of the doubt” when I fall short. I see, but fail to fully grasp, the width and breadth and depth of God’s love for me, to lay hold of His great grace and tender mercies.
I'd Laugh, but it All Happened to Me - We've got it all wrong - Why are the showing swimming (it was water polo) again? I hate swimming. I like the running. They never show the running (except for hours in prime time). You know who is really good? That Ulysses Bolton (Usain Bolt), the one from the Bahamas (Jamaica). He is so fast. I saw him win the 1000 yard (100 meter) dash. He is really American you know, he just runs for the Bahamas because there team is easier to make. Almost all of those foreigners really live in America. Why do we let those foreign countries in the Olympics anyway (WOW!)? You know what else I hate? When those stupid British people say soccer and football are the same thing (The entire world calls it football except us)! Yeah right. The Bucs would kill those soccer teams (seems unlikely the Bucs would win at either sport)...
The Arizona Russums - Flowers Fade Friday: Beautiful Things - And Jesus was right. Her story was recorded in the Bible. And even today we celebrate the humble, nameless woman who poured her perfume on Jesus.
And this is how it is with all the mundane tasks that seem to fill our day. The hymn sung quietly as you unload the dishwasher. When you pause from sending emails to snuggle your child for a minute or give your husband a kiss. When you return to those emails and try to get back to people in a timely manner. When your Pinterest recipe fails miserably, and you laugh and throw a freezer pizza in the oven to feed your family.
The Esau Project - Just for Us - I feel like as a culture we’re getting less and less original.
Mustard Seed - MAD Monday - This week, while I was on my way to church, I saw something that gave me hope. I noticed that the traffic light had turned green, but traffic had not started moving. When I looked to see what was going on I saw some people running from the parking lot of the gas station. They were running into the road.
Goins, Writer - The Most Trying Part of Living a Good Story - Good stories involve conflict, which is a nice word for pain. People don’t become heroes without sacrifice, and as creatures of comfort, this is the last thing we want to endure.
No Superheros - Oscar Pistorius Teaches Us Endurance - I see a church of believers who receive an idea or a dream from God. We immediately begin to find ways to make that dream a reality.
Then a difficulty comes. Perhaps the results are slow to come. In the past, the ministry pioneers would endure and press in to see the dream accomplished. Today we assume it means God is no longer involved and so we move on to a new revelation from God.
We have allowed the culture of ease and comfort to determine the will of God for us.Beta Christian - Spiritual Vertigo - The scriptures describes the Church1 as the body of Christ. Christ being the head of the church and each of us, being all members of His body. When each member of the body of Christ works as it should, the body is in balance and works perfectly together. However, when parts of the body are not in sync with the others, we lose the balance and end up experiencing a spiritual vertigo that affects not only that member, but the body as a whole.
Shawn Smucker - Why Sammy Screamed and What I Told Him - “Sammy, it’s okay if you’re angry. I’m just going to hold you.”
And each time I said that, I felt his little muscles loosen. His enraged screams turned to heartfelt whimpers and then those trembling sobs. I know it’s a worn out cliche, but he literally melted in my arms.A Deeper Story - Letter from a Charismatic Girl to the Suspicious - You get to do those things, if you want. You get to prophecy and speak in tongues. You get to heal. You get to operate in those gifts, but only if you really want to. God won’t force it upon you, and those of us who tried to force it? We were wrong.
The problem is though, you’ve strayed so far in the other direction – ridden that pendulum to the other extreme and then leaped out even further – and you can’t see that the Truth was in the middle.Grit and Glory - Pleading Not Guilty - And I mustn’t allow my guilt to force-feed my insatiable striving complex. Nor must I allow it to paralyze me into inactivity or apathy.
I had finally learned to step off the roller coaster and actually engage in doing something that would truly make a difference. Not fueled by guilt, but by hope.
I realized that it isn’t about being apologetic for what I have, giving everything away, or looking down on how much people spend at Starbucks. It is about stewarding what I have well, using it to serve, strengthen, and love others.
Red Letter Believers - Hide, but Don't Seek - And then there was long silence. That was a good sign that I wouldn't be found. Nervously, I peeked out, secretly hoping for discovery. But in the recesses of my mind came questions, the doubt. Did I do such a good job of getting lost, that I would never be found? Would I ever be discovered? Would they go home and forget the hunt? Would anybody really care?
Honest Toddler - Games - Are your ready for some football! Monday night par-tay! LOL, we’re not playing football. Or traditional hide & seek. The game we’re playing is far more complicated but interestingly enough, less structured. There are strict regulations that can change at a moment’s notice so it’s vital that you pay attention and watch me for cues.
Stuff Christians Like - The Worst Tool for Evangelism - Jesus replies, “If you can? Everything is possible for one who believes.”
The View from Here - Last Place Hero - “And also, I’m here to represent a country with lots of problems right now. Right now we are facing the loss of children, the loss family. There are bombs a lot in my country. The women in my country have lots of problems right now."
“What I face, I face all the challenges, cross all the problems, and right now I am here.
Beta Christians - When Saints Dress Up as Satan - Satan means “adversary”. The moment Peter foolishly rebuked his Lord because of his coming suffering, he was opposing the will of God. Jesus going to the cross and paying the price for humanity’s sin was God’s will and anyone who opposes His redeeming will is an adversary to God. No exception!
Peter acted emotionally, judging with human eyes the things of the Spirit, and by doing so he was looked upon as an adversary of God.