Sunday, September 29, 2013

Childlike contentment!

This past week my family and I went on our first full week vacation since my son Blake was born, over nine years ago. My wife started planning in March, after we got our taxes back. She looked at places on the beach within our budget, she planned excursions for rainy days, packed food and clothing, checked rental vehicles, and even planned crafts and games to keep the kids occupied on the seventeen hour drive.

I mention all of this as it seems no matter how much we plan, weather always plays a factor, this time was no exception. We arrived on Saturday with sun and great expectations, Sunday evening you could see the changeable skies coming in. The next three days we would be flooded in the house.

My wife and I were disappointed as we had planned the perfect vacation, and now it seemed it was becoming a disaster, our kids however were having a blast, content with the PS3, and movies.

The thing is we failed to see what our kids saw, and that was no matter what the world may throw our way, to have that child like vision and contentment.

This week slow down and see the world through a child's eyes!  

Matthew 11:25,26
25 At that time Jesus prayed this prayer: “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike. 26 Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way!

Ecclesiastes 1:7,8
Rivers run into the sea, but the sea is never full. Then the water returns again to the rivers and flows out again to the sea. Everything is wearisome beyond description. No matter how much we see, we are never satisfied. No matter how much we hear, we are not content.

1 Timothy 6:6-8
Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The end of regulation!

Do you turn off the tv after nine innings regardless of whether the game is over or not? Do you stop watching a football game at the end of regulation? Why is it we make sure our pastors keep a schedule and don't run over on time? Is a good sermon less important than an extra inning baseball game, or a double overtime football game?

Have you noticed how churches are racing through sermons and making sure they keep a tight schedule. Don't misunderstand me, it is good to keep a schedule and try to keep things to the point, but should our church life be so compartmentalized?
If the pastor is on fire, should he stop after forty five minutes? What if the real meat of the message were to happen at forty seven minutes, and God's real message never got heard because we reached the end of regulation?

We rush through life in everything we do, even our time with God. I have found myself rushing through my time with God, instead of giving him the best time. I caught myself this morning jumping the gun to go up to play music for communion, and in a way rushing our pastor through his final points in his sermon.

If we have time for entertainment can't we give the same reverence to our time with God?

This week go tell your pastor it's ok if you run over, Sunday is the Lord's day and I can think of nothing more important than hearing what He has to speak through you.

Psalms 39: 4-7
Lord, make me to know my end,
And what is the measure of my days,
That I may know how frail I am.
Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths,
And my age is as nothing before You;
Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor. Selah
Surely every man walks about like a shadow;
Surely they busy themselves in vain;
He heaps up riches,
And does not know who will gather them.
“And now, Lord, what do I wait for?
My hope is in You.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Waiting on God's plans

Ten years ago today, I married my beautiful wife JoAnna. I had been single for a number of years after going through a very bad relationship. Before JoAnna and I met, I didn't think there was anyone out there that would love me for me, or would be by my side through it all.

Realistically I had set the conditions for finding someone pretty high, simple but high. I had a cousin who was sick for years and his wife stayed by his side right to the end of his life. I was looking for what I called, a be with me even when I can't wipe the drool from my mouth kind of love, you know an unconditional love.

Lucky for me God had the perfect plan, and love for me, all I had to do was be patient and wait for her blue eyes to shine my way. Both of us had been in relationships we had planned for ourselves, but I know my life will never be the same after finding the love and life God had planned for me.

Today we are celebrating our tenth anniversary. I know years from now, as we are watching the sunset on our front porch while celebrating our fiftieth, our love will be strong and true, not because we had the perfect plan, but because God had made us for each other.

I know this isn't my normal weekly writing, but I know with two joined together, believing in all God has planned for you, nothing is impossible. I truly believe God brought us together and will continue to work in our lives. I pray to God each day and give thanks for crossing our paths.

Ephesians 5:22-33
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.