I’m carrying such a heavy heart today. Stayed up all night wrapping presents on my own while Lori was horribly sick. I read the Christmas story with Lori and the kids this morning and as I think of each of our kids and the baby on the way with a heartbeat of 160+ bpm, I’m overwhelmed feeling loved by God. How amazing that he gave his Son. Laying that fragile baby in a manger knowing the sacrifice He would endure for me and every other person. I’m sitting here looking at the manger that Will and I built which has a blanket and a cutout of Jesus in it and the “Happy birthday crown” that each of us wears on our birthdays. I’m overwhelmed feeling grateful to Him and Jesus and crying out desperately for Him to ease Lori’s pain and come closer to me. I feel so loved and yet long so much to feel and know Him more closely, truly, fully. It’s just so amazing. Merry Christmas, God. Happy birthday, Jesus.
The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.
Here’s an excerpt:
A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,500 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 25 trips to carry that many people.
Click here to see the complete report.
Acts 16:9-10 NIV
During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.
What would it look like if we as church leaders followed the Spirit with this kind of sensitivity and obedience? And what would it look like if we as church members followed our church leadership with this kind of trust and humility?
“If redemption could be reversed, it wouldn’t be redemption.”
Clip a coupon. Go to the store. Redeem the coupon. Buy something. Take it home. Go back to the store. Return the item and try to get the coupon back.
Can you return the item? Yes. Usually.
Can you get your money back? Sometimes.
Can you get your coupon back? No. It’s been redeemed. It’s finished.
When Christ died he declared, “It is finished.” When we accept His sacrifice on our behalf, we allow him to redeem us. “It is finished.” (John 19:30)
The same is true for us. If we could be plucked from His hand, then being in His hand wouldn’t be a source of hope, love, grace or life. It would merely be a temporary relief filled with anxiety and fear of the inevitably impending end of such relief and the return of the pain, uncertainty and Hell that exists everywhere outside of God’s hand. (John 10:28-30)
And so redemption cannot be lost. There are many things that can be lost. We may lose keys, wallets, loved ones, talents, youth, health and even life itself. But alas redemption cannot be lost. It cannot be reversed, it cannot be shaken, it cannot be shirked. Lest it not be redemption.
Redemption. Forgiveness. Forever. Thank God.
Here’s a picture.
Here’s Bob and Dave (white homeless men) teaching Zane (4 year old son of a working single black mother) how to hit a wiffle ball at the Elevate Detroit Mt. Clemens CommuniD BBQ today.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. But I think this one’s priceless.
Jesus is all over it.
“You must let your heart break. Only when the most innocent part of you suffers, can there be change. Else, nothing remains of you.” – Hatfields & McCoys
Sometimes I feel like Peter Pan. Young at heart; old in mind. Deciding to always think happy thoughts, but the result is that I’m flying. Life with Christ is truly life abundant… amazing, thrilling, difficult at times and always adventuresome.
I did not write this. This is a prayer I took from a devotional that I read today. This is a prayer I pray for myself.
Jesus, I see You wash Your disciples’ feet. I hear You call me to follow Your example. Help me to serve those I lead today, meeting them at their point of need, and serving them without regard to position. May my leadership create true community, a community that reflects Your presence and example. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
When considering the evil that runs freely rampant in my mind I am reminded and shown how much work the Spirit has left to do in transforming it. And I take courage and joy from the grief this causes my heart. For if thus is the life I have with my brother Christ now, with such corruption and double mindedness yet holding fast within me, how much greater is the journey yet to come as my transformation furthers and I may begin to actually reflect his basic tenant to simply love all freely?!
Like John, Paul and so many others, may I face each day with the bold, courageous and taunting phrase, “Lord, lead me on.” May I never falter or tire of the adventure of peace and love in a world so hungry for all three. And may I live and love all others as myself evermore and myself as relentlessly and fully as my Father Creator God.
Yes truly, the past has been good. The best is yet to come. I am yours, Papa. Amen.
My goal in life: Leave a mark on the world, but not a hole.
Put a dent on earth without leaving a hole.
Leave the world a little lighter, a little brighter and a little slower.
Ride the ocean around the world leaving ripples of love everywhere.
Never stop saying, “Let there be Light.”