Gardens

A few years ago my daughter told me she wanted to make her own raised garden bed for veggies. So, we spent a weekend and built one for her. We planted kale, peppers, and some herbs. But I made sure she knew keeping the garden healthy was her task. She needed to water it daily. Pull out weeds and leaves and make sure that critters weren’t stealing o…read more

Why am I here?

Why am I here? Why are any of us here? Since the beginning of humankind, philosophers have debated this question and offered their own answers. One of the best answers I’ve heard is, “The purpose of life is a life of purpose”. What does a life of purpose look like? To contribute something positive in this world? Even something that makes a small difference can give meaning to life. So, maybe you feel like your life on autopilot. Maybe it’s time for something different. Maybe it’s time to find opportunities to pour into others. Volunteer. Give back to your community. In the Bible, Ephesians 2, Paul says, “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works”

This Day

In the aftermath of multiple disasters in the US, Stacy Martin, the editor of Redbook Magazine said, “Although the national mood is somber right now, I take it in stride as a reminder of the true nature of life: It’s a heady, scary, wonderful, sad, happy mix. Take each moment of each day and live it not as if it’s your last- but as if it’s your first, your best, and your only day.” That is so beautiful. And great advice. In the Bible, Proverbs 27, verse 1 it says “Don’t boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth.” I hope this doesn’t sound dark- but tomorrow is never promised. So live your life and live it well. Make today count!

Sensitivity Training

It’s been said that sensitivity to the circumstances and feelings of others is the cornerstone of all human relationships. Many companies today even hold seminars on Sensitivity Training. According to philosopher, Simone Weil (Si-moan While), “The love of our neighbor in all its fullness simply means being able to say to them, 'What are you going through?” In the Bible, the Apostle Paul said of Timothy who is at the church in Philippi, “I have no one else like him, who takes a genuine interest in your welfare. What about you? Do you know what your neighbor is going through today? Be intentional with the relationships around you. We’re not in this alone. Maybe it’s time you reminded someone else.

Squirrel!

My friend’s 6-month old puppy is coming a long way with her training. We went on a trail run together with his dog and she did great. Even off-leash she stayed right with us- until… a squirrel ran across our path. It didn’t matter that she’s had so much training and really wanted to please her owner. When the squirrel ran past, she took off and chased it up a tree. They are her weakness! What about you? What things distract you from your prayer life or time in scripture? For some it’s work; a busy schedule in general. For a lot us it might just be social media. It absolutely has its place to share the gospel, but often, it just becomes mindless scrolling. If you feel like there is something grabbing your attention more than your Heavenly Father- try to put it down for a while and bring your focus back to God.

Killing Ourselves

At the beginning of the twentieth century, infectious diseases were the primary causes of premature death in America. But in the twenty-first century, preventable lifestyle diseases like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and many cancers- influenced by unhealthy habits and poor choices are shortening our lives. The National Institutes of Health estimates that between 44,000 and 98,000 die in the US each year from preventable diseases. In many cases, we’re killing ourselves. Today, let’s be reminded that admitting our need for God and surrendering our lives to Him is always the first step to healing any destructive habit we may have. Let God help you today. Putting Him first in your life is the only way to true satisfaction.

Turn Signal

I was running late to work the other morning. And- It always feels like the more I’m in a rush, the more things go wrong. I almost forgot my phone, I spilled my coffee on the way out the door, and realized halfway down my street that I left my work keys on the table. Not off to a great start. Once I settled into the horrific Atlanta traffic I was stuck behind a car going way too slow in the fast lane who left their turn signal on for the last mile. How could they be so clueless? I just need this airhead to get out of my way and… I then noticed I had left my turn signal on too. That was a nice practice in humility. The next time you feel a bad mood like this coming on- don’t let it spill onto others. Recognize it and ask God to calm and quiet your spirit. Nothing that went wrong on this morning was the end of the world. Keep it in perspective- and yeah- don’t forget to cancel your turn signal.

Church: Why Bother?

Research shows that the strongest sources of happiness are the people in our lives. Social support is one of the most important predictors of whether people are happy. Humans long to connect with other people. We can all remember how much COVID taught us- that we need each other! Christian author Philip Yancey wrote a book called “Church: Why Bother?” in which he discusses the community in relation to faith. He said, “Christianity is not purely intellectually, internal faith. It can only be lived out in community.” The author of the book of Hebrews also says And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another. We’re designed to be spiritual beings that also need social support. So when it comes to church, by all means do bother to go!

Their Heart’s Not In It

Many sports fans might accuse a player of not having their heart in the game when their intensity doesn’t match the intensity of the game. So much so that I’ve heard people complain that the Superbowl is rigged when they see a player not live up to expectations. It’s not always easy but God calls us to be all in for Him. In Matthew chapter 16, Jesus calls us to be fully surrendered in our faith. Maybe lately you’ve been only dipping a toe in with God. One foot in the door and the other holding onto things of this world. Be a follower of Christ who is completely and fully surrendered to Him and what He’s called you to do. To love Him and love others.

Renovation or Restoration

There’s a difference between renovation and restoration. If you’re renovating, it usually means you’re upgrading, changing the style- making something new and different. A renovation might be starting with an old house, that’s not necessarily historic, and repairing and upgrading it into 2024. But to restore a home- means you are bringing it back to its original condition. 1st Peter chapter 5 says that the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. God doesn’t want to renovate. He loves who you are. Instead- He wants to restore us back to our original place of relationship with Him.

Incomprehensible

There are some things in this world our minds have a hard time comprehending. Have you ever been to the Grand Canyon? Everywhere you look your brain is almost convinced it’s just a picture. The enormous scale is just too much to grasp. Or what about the distance between the Earth and the Moon? Or the size of an atom? Like these incredible examples of scale, we can only imagine a fraction of God’s love. If you’re going through a tough time and struggling to see how God is working in your life- realize that we can barely grasp the size of a mountain let alone the mind of the Creator of the Universe. His love for you is beyond measure. He gave up His throne to become one of us and die in our place. That’s a love beyond comprehension.

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