Saturday, September 14, 2013

After a lengthy hiatus...

Relationships are required. Like it or not, introvert or extrovert, they are required. We have family, co-workers, customers, bosses, retail clerks, and the list goes on. We can treat relationships with complete disdain and mow through life, head down... and life will suck. Or we can invest, give and take, be hurt and hurt back, love and be loved... and life will be rich. The lows always give special emphasis to the highs. Relationships matter. God created Adam and in Genesis 2 said, "It is not good for the man to be alone." We are meant to be in relationship.
All of that said, I'm navigating a patch of life where this has become glaringly obvious. I'm experiencing the intricacies of relationships, all of them: highs and lows, pain and gain, good and bad. Some of these folks have been with me through most of my life, since I was 4 or 5 years old. Others I've known for a few weeks. I have come to realize that I truly value these people. Either I don't have the vocabulary or words simply won't describe how my life course has been impacted through my people.
That's it, my people. These are my people. Chances are, if you've taken the time to read what I've written, you are my people. My hope is that I am investing and you are blessed. 
The bottom line is... my people matter.

Friday, March 16, 2012


As I review this past whirlwind of a week and prioritize the dozens of things that I need to accomplish this weekend, I'm reminded of a couple things:
First, the fourth commandment. Going on the way that Jesus treated the Sabbath, it's not necessarily about the specific day, rather the concept of rest. I know that my interactions with people always go better when I'm rested.
The second thing that I'm reminded of is Honduras. My good friends there and how the simplicity of their lives allows them to enjoy life, To enjoy the people in their lives. Many folks view Latin culture as lazy. That is simply not the case. They just value people and relationships higher than anything, including work. 
Jesus is like that. He loves people. Lame people, poor people, rich people, smart people, even not-so-smart people like me. 
The bottom line is...
simplicity places value on people.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Plan

Well, I got my name badge from the Kansas City BBQ Society. I am a credentialed BBQ judge. So what? 
It's like this, Christ commanded His followers to go and make disciples. When you work at a church, that becomes increasingly difficult. You find that everyone with whom you have contact has, at a minimum, been presented with the Gospel.
To move out of that circle, I have been recently challenged to engage the world as Jesus did. To make intentional relationships to seek the lost. 
The cool thing is, Jesus doesn't expect it to be drudgery. I've realized that I can do it at least 2 ways that are loads of fun. BBQ and plowing snow! (when it happens). 
1 Corinthians 9:22-23 is very clear. Use whatever you can to win the lost.
The bottom line is:
Jesus' plan is amazing!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


We begin reading stories to children when they are very young, even before they can understand what we are reading. We tell stories in the form of jokes, we describe our life experiences to others in the form of stories. Some folks even make up stories to be impressive.
Jesus used stories to help His listeners (us included) to see deep truths. The biblical term would be parable. These parables helped the spiritually weak to understand. 
In Luke 10:25-37, Jesus uses a story to teach a "religious" man about mercy towards neighbors. 
Mercy, a game that we played in Jr High. Interlocked fingers, trying to overpower the other and bend their fingers backwards, inflicting pain until they cried "MERCY!". In that context, mercy meant to stop inflicting pain. 
Just maybe, helping our neighbors, is indeed, to stop the pain. 
The bottom line is...
Love the Lord with everything, love your neighbor as yourself.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lent, Leadership, Spiritual gifts

For Lent, I will give up "not blogging". I have to constantly remind my self that it's not about me. My purpose for blogging is to share how God is working and has worked in my life. To share the things that He's telling me.
Leadership. According to Romans 12:8, it is a spiritual gift. Spiritual gift. Wait, what the heck does "spiritual gift" mean? I believe it means that God has given each of His followers a natural propensity to do certain things, and to do them well. From there, we decide to cultivate those gifts and use them. Sometimes we use them for God's purposes and sometimes, not. I think of the gift of evangelism and how Adolph Hitler had certainly been given that gift and used it to serve the purposes of Satan rather than God. We have that choice. Hitler obviously chose the wrong focus of his gifts.
Leadership. In order to be a leader, that requires followers. I inventory my own life and see that there are those whom I lead. It makes me a little nervous as I contemplate what I'm leading them to. The Apostle Paul had the gift of leadership. He told the Corinthian church, "Follow me as I follow Christ."
My self-inventory includes asking: Can I say that? Am I leading people to Christ?
That's my desire. To lead. To lead people to a relationship with the eternal Savior. Jesus, the ONLY way to God.
The bottom line is:
If I'm not leading people to Jesus, my life is a failure.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

True Integrity

Integrity is defined by as: adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty.
This world is all but devoid of integrity. Sadly, adults in the church are no different. In a research article that I read this weekend, 51% of the 25-55 year-old Christians surveyed, admitted to lying at least once in the past week. Worse yet, a staggering 67% of the 16-24 year-olds, professing a relationship with Christ, admitted to recent lying. The most common excuse- they didn't want to hurt another person's feelings.
As I've read the Scripture I have found references about lying. One in particular is Colossians 3:9, "Don't lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds."
He didn't pad it with: "unless it hurts somebody's feelings" or "unless it a harmless white lie" or "unless it's against a cold, large corporation"... it's very simple, lying is wicked. No excuses, no exceptions, no justifications. Lying is wicked.
Be careful, Satan is sneaky. He will lead you to believe that integrity isn't that big of a deal. But God's word is plain, lying is wicked. All lying, including: "How do these shoes look?", "Does this dress make me look fat?", "Santa Clause is bringing presents!", "The Company will never know!", "The IRS will never find out!" 
God places high value on integrity because the bottom line is...

Saturday, November 19, 2011

God's Sense of Humor

Fall has been so busy that I've not had time to blog! Sometimes blogging slips down my priority list. 
God's way of doing things is amazing and sometimes comical. At times, I've been worried, and later looked back to laugh. God is truly in control. But. I continue to be thick-headed and forget. I fret over things, He comes through... AGAIN, and the cycle repeats.
All of that to comment on my recent recollection of life experiences that have formed who I am.
Of late, my ministry efforts have taken a certain "business world" flair. Tasks and decisions that are not so much taught in Bible college. It has been faith-building to realize God's hand at work in my life, forming me for-such-a-time-as-this. 
Occasionally, I deal with remorse about the hiatus I took from God, only to see how He used that time to build within me, abilities for a later date. Romans 8:28 comes to mind. He was able to take a messed up saga, a time when my back was turned to Him, and create usefulness. WOW! 
The bottom line is...
God uses our past to create HIS future.