Sunday, July 31, 2011

steward your heart

I was listening to a preacher last week talk about the trials and tribulations of growing up and growing older.  Of the things that happen to us and the things that we must face and deal with.

One of the things that he said that stuck out to me was, "you have to learn to steward in every season of your life, your pain, your hurt and your disappointment."

Oh.  that stopped me in my tracks.  I thought- wow, all of these things that I have been facing and complaining about, I have a responsibility to manage my feelings?  And the thought settled in.  of course I do.  Of course it is my responsibility to grasp, hold and at least try to manage the pain and hurt of life.  Other wise, how does one overcome?

If we don't learn to do this, we can easily miss the good in life and become what George Bernard Shaw talked about -

" This is the true joy in life,
the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one;
the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap…  
and being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod
of ailments and grievance,
complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy."

Managing, stewarding my feelings.  I am thinking about this.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

get up

When Alli was a little kid, I used to play a game with her.  I would roll her down on the floor or toss her in a pile of pillows.  Then I would ask her, "what do you do when you get knocked down?"  It took a while, but she finally learned - "you get back up."

This is an important life lesson.  What do you do when you get knocked down?  You get back up.  Chumbawumba said it well in a song a few years ago, "i get knocked down, but I get up again, you ain't never gonna keep me down."

Everyone gets knocked down.  Not everyone gets back up.  Those that would learn to see the good, must learn to accept the knock downs, and learn to get back up.  Every time.  Consider the alternative for a moment.  Then realize, we have to get back up.  Every time.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, July 29, 2011

tip the server

I was talking to someone the other day who up until recently was a server at a restaurant.  They told me that there is at least one church in town, that instead of leaving a tip for the server, the members will leave tracts, scriptures and notes.

Ok, folks.  Really.  Are you sure?  Sometimes what sounds spiritual is really very unspiritual.  It is customary to tip the server in this country.  How is it Christian to not tip them?  How is it Christian to leave a tract instead?  In my mind the message this leaves to a server who might be looking for a church is- "don't come to our church, this is how we treat people."

I suggest for all of my Methodist friends, that you become a regular at the places that you eat.  Get to know the servers as people.  Ask about their kids.  Become their friends.  Love them.  If it comes up naturally in the conversation, talk church or faith with them.  Be patient.  Care for them.   And, tip them.  Tip unto them as you would like to be tipped unto yourself.  I promise you that if they are ever looking for a church, yours will be the one they try out.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

my phone

What is wrong with my phone?  It calls people all by itself.  If we called or texted each other at all in the last few days, the odds are, that my phone will decide to call you, all by itself.

Sometimes my wife will walk up to me and ask me what I want.
 I will say,  what do you mean, I don't want anything. 
Then she will ask why I am calling her. 

I don't even have my phone with me.  We walk over to the counter where my phone is sitting, and sure enough, it is calling her.

Maybe there is something wrong with it.  Maybe it is time for a new phone.  Maybe it is lonely.  I am sorry if it has been calling you.  Bad phone.  It reminds me of the Terminator series.  Rise of the machines.  Has your phone been acting up lately?  Maybe there is something sinister going on.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Seen on a plaque in the cube of a Woods Chapel staff person:

when it comes to doing good things for others,
some people will stop at nothing.

And then there is the rest of you.  I continue to be blessed by the generosity of our church family.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


I love books and I love to read.  Reading makes me smarter.  Not smarter than someone else, smarter than what I was. 

I love to ask people what they are reading.  When I find someone that I think is cool, I love to hear about what they are in to.  It's like if someone loves the band "Steely Dan"but you are unfamiliar with them, you may want to go out and buy an album.  If it is good for them, maybe it will be good for you.

So, I am driving down the road one day and I hear Dave Ramsey talking about the five books that he makes his employees read.  I pull over to the side of the road and write them down.  Here they are-

"Who moved my cheese" by Spencer Johnson
"The Go-getter" by Peter Kyne
"Rhinoceros Success" by Scott Alexander
"QBQ - The Question behind the question" by John Miller
"The legend of Monk and the Merchant" by Terry Felber

I bought them from one of my used book sites and I thought they were all very good, especially the Go-getter.  Rhinoceros Success was my least favorite.

What are you reading?

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, July 25, 2011

thinking and believing

I was talking to Shawn the other day.  The topic of "what makes a Christian" came up.  Is a Christian someone that thinks about Jesus?  Is a Christian someone who believes something about Jesus, or believes in Jesus?

Or is a Christian someone that lives a certain way because of what they think or believe?  If I think or believe about Jesus long enough, do I start spending my time differently?  Do I begin to look at others differently?  Do I finally realize that I can't take it with me, and start listening to God's direction about "my" stuff?

If the primary mark of the Christian is love [my preacher keeps saying that] then can I live a life of love by only thinking or believing?  Or does love compel action?

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Dirt.  We all have it.  In a few weeks we will be starting a new series on forgiveness.  Here is the promo video for the series:

We are asking that you share any thoughts, stories or testimonies that you may have about forgiveness.  When were you forgiven by another?  when have you forgiven yourself?  someone else?  And anything else that you might want to share about forgiveness.

Thanks.  It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

the truth about who we are

I have noticed something that I find a bit disturbing.  It is the fact that if someone tells themself something long enough, they actually begin to believe that it is true. 

I hear of people who committed a crime, but tell themselves that they didn't long enough that they begin to believe the lie.  It's like truth becomes what you make it. 

Something happens.  It wasn't my fault.  If I tell myself this long enough, I may just believe it.

I prefer a certain view of history.  It's what I was taught.  It is what makes me comfortable.  But what if it is not true, or what if it is a clouded version of the story?  To some degree then, I am living a lie.

This kind of thinking tends to keep us far from reality.  It keeps us rooted in our beliefs that may make us comfortable, but are still a theory of our creation.

Someone believes that Satan is the opposite of God.  That is what they were taught.  They refuse to budge even though the Biblical evidence does not teach this.  Someone believes that Satan is omni present.  It's what they were taught.  You can't help them think otherwise.  It's just what they were taught.

Someone believes that their life is about them.  It is what they were taught.  They have done it long enough that they recoil at the thought of life being about God and others.

Someone believes that all pastors are bad.  It's what they were taught.  It is their life experience.  But is it right?  Does it make all pastors to be charlatans?

And so I come to the things that I believe about myself, my family and our history.  How much of it is really true and how much of it is something that is made up for my convenience? 

It takes a brave person to really be honest about such things.  But I think that God looks for such people, who see themselves for who they are, good- bad- or indifferent.  I think that God likes honesty.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.  Also be willing to see the truth, even if it is uncomfortable.

Friday, July 22, 2011

my eye

There is something in my eye!  I can't find it.  I can't get it out.  I have washed it.  Rubbed it.  Picked at the corners.  It is driving me crazy.  I have been fighting it for four days.

Oh.  I just remembered something.  This happened to me last year at this time.  and the year before.  The first time, two years ago, I went to the eye doctor.  We tried all kinds of drops and then decided it was allergies.  I have never had allergies before, but you know, after a while, they just cleared up.  Problem gone.

Here is my problem.  Why does it take me four days to remember this?  Why does my brain allow me to worry about all of this for four days before it lets me into the fact that this has all happened before? 

I open the eye drops.  Relief.  Temporary, but soothing relief.  It's a big bottle of drops.  And all is well again in my world.  I am not losing my sight after all. 

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, July 21, 2011


There are almost 7 billion people in this world.  156,000 die every day.  That's alot of people coming and going.  For the most part, we don't even notice.

And then there is that one.  Among the 156,000 who died today, there was that one.  That one that I knew.  That one that I loved.  That one that I was close to.  That one that was not a number, not a statistic.  That one was my friend.

I am so glad to know that not even a sparrow falls without the knowledge of God.  I am glad to know that every hair on my head is numbered by him.  [this job has become much easier over the years.]

Somehow trusting in God gives me a sense of comfort and peace, even when I lose a friend.  He really does have the whole world in his hands.  And, every single one of the 6.7 billion is known by him.  He is extremely fond of all 156,000 that slip out of this life into the next each day.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Since I was a child I have been interested in collecting coins.  I used to buy them at the Hart-Meyer store in Waldo.  Do any of you remember that store?

I like all kinds of coins.  Foreign.  American.  Silver.  I like the old siver coins.  Who doesn't?

 I have a Nazi coin from WW2.  My mom gave me a few peace dollars when I was a kid.  I thought they were nerdy.  I am glad to have them now.

One of my favorites is the Balboa coins from Panama.  I think they are pretty cool.

if you are going on a trip somewhere, let me give you a few bucks and maybe you can bring me back some coins from where ever you travelled.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

why do they like me?

Sometimes I ask this question, of my friends, and of my wife:  Why do they like me?  It's not that I am a bad guy or that I have secrets that should cause them to not like me.  So what is that question about?

I wonder if I, as most or many people, have a deep seated fear of being unloved.  It's not based in anything real, and I guess I am as lovable as the next person, but the feeling remains.  Is it a hold over from childhood?  Wondering if I am worthy to be picked up and held by my parents? 

Why do I think that I have earned someone's rejection?  I deserved it.  But I struggle to capture the fact that maybe someone can just love me because they do.

I love that thought about God.  That he loves us.  He just does.  Not because we are nice or good looking or well behaved.  He just loves us.  That is cool and it gets me smiling.

Maybe this funny feeling is an appreciation of their love.  Maybe as I witness the kindness of people, I am just amazed at their God like loving behavior.  The fact that they love me is just amazing to me.  I am grateful for it.  I hope you are grateful for all those that love you.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, July 18, 2011

don't push that button

My oldest daughter rented an apartment downtown and has moved out.  Now, when you are 23, moving out means that you take what you want and leave the rest.  Someone else will pack it up for you.  Or, maybe you leave enough behind so that you can have two lives, one at your new apartment, and one at your parents home.

The parents hope that when a child moves out, that they will take their junk with them.  I moved the bed and dresser out of the room so you could move yours in, so after you move out, I am going to set the room back up as a guest room.

So there is a lot of junk that you have left behind that I must pack.  I am nice about it and I put things in boxes in ways that make sense.  I find a few things that I don't know what they are or what to do with them.  One of the objects is a small black thing that looks like a lighter.  Now it doesn't occur to me that you don't smoke, so why would you have a lighter.  What occurs to me is that I want to push the button and see if it is a lighter. 

I push the button.  I shouldn't have.  Instead of the flame that I am expecting, a brown juice comes spraying out, bounces off the wall and hits me on the left side of my face.  I knew immediately what it was.


I should not have pushed that button.

If you have ever wondered, I can tell you that it takes about ten seconds for mace to take effect.  There is sneezing and coughing.  You cry like a baby.  You throw up.  All because you were trying to help your daughter pack up her room.  It lasts for about 45 minutes.

When you family finds out what is going on with you, they laugh.  Such cruelty.  Can you believe it?  Only a heartless person would laugh about Jeff accidentally macing himself. 

Anyway, the moral of the story is this.  Curiosity killed the cat.  If you don't know what it is, don't push the button.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

my space

I have space.  Personal space.  It's mine, and I wish more people would respect it.  My space is this feeling that I have about not wanting to be crowded or interfered with.  Now if it is starting to sound selfish, well it probably is.  My space is based on my feelings and does not take into consideration what you may feel about your space.

When i really need to get on the elevator and the door opens, and it is already pretty full, my brain says, make space for me.  If you are on the elevator and someone like me crowds in, you may be feeling that I am in your space.  Sorry.  My space is about me.  I imagine that yours is too.

I notice this phenomenon the most when I am at a crowded place like an athletic event, a concert or the airport.  Everyone is going somewhere and they are in a hurry.  There are no lines on the road and no traffic signs, so everyone goes every which way they can.  None of them realize that they are getting in my way. 

Why did that person just cut me off?  Don't they realize that I was going that way?  Couldn't they see that I was on a certain trajectory?  Come on, get with the program.  Don't you know that I am the queen bee?  Make room for me.

Maybe such encounters is why shy people like me actually prefer to stay away from big crowds.  That's why I like the Royals games.  Shy people don't force their way onto elevators.  They walk a little slower and keep an eye out for the crazy drivers at the airport.  When I slow down, it helps me keep my space to myself, which keeps me in my comfort zone.

And about the time I am totally feeling peaceful, walking along behind someone at a sweet and comfortable clip, well they just stop.  They just stop.  They just stop.  For no reason, maybe they just realized that they forgot something.  Maybe they realized that their flight is actually tomorrow.  But they just stop.  I jam on the brakes.  I give them the look.  They don't even notice.  My goodness man, you did not just do that.  You did not just stop!  What is wrong with you?

My space.  It is constantly getting violated.  And so, I enjoy the morning.  The quiet.  A few moments to write and think and pray before the onslaught of humanity comes crashing into my elevator or cutting me off it traffic.  Enjoy the quiet times.  With the population on the rise, they are sure to be fewer and farther in between.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

self respect

Self respect is a very important part of life.  Being able to look at yourself and know that you are doing the right things is very important.  We have all disappointed ourselves from time to time and it does not feel good.

Another important angle to self respect is learning to take care of your problems so that you can live and help others.  We all have times when we need help, and when we do, we need to accept it.  But oh does it feel good to be able to solve a problem and move on.

I have joked about getting my kids off of the payroll.  Well I have found something out about my daughters as they have now both graduated from college and landed jobs.  They wanted to get off of the payroll too.  They want to provide for themselves.  They want to make plans without consulting parents or asking for money.  They want to buy their own LaFluente.

That is a good feeling.  One of them actually bought my breakfast a few weeks ago.  Fall on the ground.  Isn't that something?  Wait a minute, it's stopped raining, guys are swimming, guys are sailing........

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, July 15, 2011

some things that we just hate

Hate is a strong word.  Maybe too strong.  Dislike.  I don't like spiders and snakes.  Who sang that song?

Well it is true, I don't like spiders or snakes or the New York Yankees.  Most people in Kansas City agree with me.  Those are three things that go together.

But why?  aren't spiders and snakes and important part of the food chain?  And aren't the Yankees nice guys that have wives and children?  Yes and yes.  Then why the strong dislike?

I think it is because there is a fear factor to all three.  Life is going along pretty good and then, up jumps the devil.  Here they are, right in your face.  A crawling spider, a slithering snake, a Bronx Bomber.  Besides the element of surprise, they all three have the ability to hurt you.  Spiders can give a painful and poisonous bite.  Snakes can wrap you up and suffocate you.  Yankees can dash your playoff hopes with the swing of a bat.

It doesn't really change anything for me to understand these things about these scary critters.  I do think it is helpful for us to name our fears from time to time.  When I realize that most spiders are not poisonous and most snakes are not big enough to swallow me, all I have left to fear is the Yankees.  And maybe someday, the tables will turn and their fans will fear the Royal blue of Kansas City.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

illegal part 2

I am thankful to each of you that take the time to post comments.  I received this one and thought that I would share it directly and add some thoughts.

to the post from July 6th-
I was out to lunch with some pastors the other day and the topic of illegal immigration came up. One of the people at the lunch said something like, "Before you all mount up on your high horses, I want to let you know that I am part native American. To us, all of you are illegal immigrants."

I paused to think. Nobody said anything else on the topic. Sometimes issues aren't as easy to figure out as I wished they were. It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

they commented-
You have wisely stated that issues are not always black and white or easy to figure out. I wonder what other turns the conversation may have taken, had the people in your group been able to have read this morning's KC Star story about the illegal immigrant, going by two names, stone drunk, and also driving erratically, in the wrong lane on I435 and trying to hit people. He finally succeeded in killing a mother and her beloved daughter.

This does no favors to those who wish people would welcome or tolerate illegal immigration.

And I wanted to reply.-
Yes.  There are some tragic things that have been done by people that are here illegally.  Every time I hear of such actions, it makes me angry.  The person who commented is correct- such actions do no favors to anyone who wished to tolerate illegal immigration.  I do not disagree with anything that the commenter has said. 

However, my point from the other day was not so much about the issue of illegal immigration today, as it was to simply to lift up the perspective of this pastor who is of American Indian heritage.  I wonder if he would not offer a long list of grievances that the whites brought to them.  Killing their women and children in acts of genocide.  Destroying their food supply for the intent of starving them.  Making and then breaking treaty after treaty.

Some would counter that we have spent millions, maybe billions, in welfare aid to American Indians.  That is true.  I wonder if they would just prefer to have their families, land and way of life returned to them.

So I have all the feelings that everyone else does about immigration and what it means to health care and education costs and safety on the streets.  I am just also aware that many of these injustices have been played out before on this continent, 150 years ago.  And we today are the beneficiaries of those actions.

My take away from this discussion is simply that it is important for me, for all of us to understand that it is very easy for me to take a position on something and find out later that someone else has a position that is very different than mine.  And sometimes they hold their positions for very good reasons, that make me stop and think.

I in no way support the criminal acts of those who are here, whether legally or illegally.

So what are you thinking about?  Are you sure of your positions on the issues?  Is there information out there on the topic that might help you or moderate your thinking?

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


I  have always like the comedian, Louie Anderson.  I was reading a bit from one of his books the other day.  He mentioned that he remembered his parents.  He remembered Mom, and Dad and himself, but he did not remember "us."

Something inside of me totally resonates with this.  I remember my Mom and my Dad and my sisters.  But there was never anything together.  There was no "us."  Its not that I don't remember it, it didn't exist.  After Mom died, I barely got started getting to know Dad.  I have been on a quest since that time to get to know and enjoy my sisters.  There ought to be an "us" to families.

I wonder if my children will remember an us.  Will they remember vacations together?  Ski trips? Movies?  Mexican food?  The little pool in the back yard?  Visits to college?  Breakfasts at First Watch?  Mission trips? 

Will they remember an us?  I sure hope so.  As I write this I just want to go find them and tell them I love them.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

borrowing things

You know, I like to think I am a nice guy but it really bothers me when I loan things to people and they do not return them.  You have to ask, "what are they thinking?"  Maybe they just got busy and forgot.

here is a short list of some of the things that I have loaned out and did not get back.
1.  a long handle axe
2.  a file of magazine and newspaper articles about the Titanic from 1973-to its discovery.
3.  camp chairs
4.  a drain snake
5.  a stop watch
6.  a collection of old silver certificates
7.  a cooler
8.  books.  many books.

on and on the list could go.  It is so frustrating.
Oh by the way, can anyone load me a copy of the book "Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand?"

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Another birthday came and went last week.  Thank you for the cards, calls, emails and texts.  I received a couple of note able cards.

One had redwood trees on the front with comments about how peaceful and serene and wonderful they are.  then you open the card and it says "thanks for planting them."

Another card had two fish swimming in a tank.  one had some innappropriate words to share with the other.  nice.

Another card had a cute little girl jumping rope. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, she counted.  One jump for every year.  Then you open the card and inside it says, Happy Birthday, somewhere, little suzie is still jumping.  Ha ha.

finally I got a quote from Lions Den Man-  
“I intend to live forever.  So far, so good.”  Steven Wright

its a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


There are many things in life that we do not expect.  The untimely death of a 46 year old friend is one of them.  On Friday, a long time friend of Woods Chapel, Sonia Clogston, had a heart attack and died.

She was an employee of DFS and a tireless worker and advocate for children.  She was kind and friendly.  Woods Chapel was more than a place that helped her care for children.  This was her church home.

Please pray for her two sons and her parents.  Please join me in thanking God for all that she was and all that she did.  She will be missed by so many.

Please never take life for granted.  Every day that we live is a gift from our Father.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

pray for rain

I regularly get the request.  Pray for rain, Pastor!  Pray for warmer weather.  Pray for cooler weather.  Pray for it to be more to our liking.

My answer is always the same.  "I am in sales, not management."

As a member of the good Lord's sales force, it is my job, my opportunity to invite others to know and follow him regardless of the circumstances.  Since I am not in management, I must leave the big decisions to Him.

What about your relationship with God?  Are you in sales or management?  How does our relationship with God's world change, depending on an understanding of us being in sales or management?

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, July 8, 2011

this is my country

Someone was dogging America the other day.  Someone younger than I am, that maybe has not read the history or lived through so much of the great stuff.

They were asking me what good has America done.  I told them, a lot.  We talked back and forth.  I think that there are many wonderful things that America has done.  Some very Christian things.  Here is the start of my list.  Can you add to it?

we have created a country where everyone can worship as they please
it took a while, but we ended slavery
we welcomed Irish immigrants during the potato famine in the 1800's
we rebuilt Europe after WW2
we have sent and do send foreign aid all over the world.
the innovations and technology created in this country have revolutionized the world.

Please add to the list.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

what is old was once new

The shoes that I put on today are 12 years old.  They have been resoled twice.  They fit my foot like a glove.  I can't imagine not having them.  But, there was once a time when they were new, different and stiff.  My feet hurt anytime I wore them.  My self esteem questioned whether or not they were a good fit for me.  But, that is all in the past now, I never think about those times, I just always put on "my" shoes and enjoy them.

Everything that we are comfortable with now, was once brand new, innovative and uncomfortable.  The ideas seemed preposterous at the time.  Sell our church and move to the highway.  Have church in a hospital.  Start a contemporary service.  Go to four services on Sunday morning.  Each of those ideas and many more, we have grown comfortable with.  What was once new and frightening, is now accepted and the norm, the familiar, the shoe that fits.

And so the moral of the story is this- when you see a change on the horizon, when you see a paradigm shift coming, it will always feel like a new pair of shoes.  For a while.  Give it time.  Focus on the goals of the change, not the discomfort that you may feel.  Take joy in the new and celebrate that we are not simply reaching for the oxygen masks as a congregation.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011


I was out to lunch with some pastors the other day and the topic of illegal immigration came up.  One of the people at the lunch said something like, "Before you all mount up on your high horses, I want to let you know that I am part native American.  To us, all of you are illegal immigrants."

I paused to think.  Nobody said anything else on the topic.  Sometimes issues aren't as easy to figure out as I wished they were.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


Someone asked that I write about reincarnation.  Reincarnation is the belief that when we die, we return to life as a person again or as an animal or insect.  These cycles continue until we "get it right" and enter heaven.

Reincarnation is an idea that although uncommon in the west, is very common in the east.  Not all eastern ideas are bad, but in my opinion, this is not a good one.

For one, the math just doesn't add up.  Think of the world's population in 500 AD, 1000 AD, 2011, and one hundred years from now.  There are more and more people, so I guess that there must be fewer animals and insects. If you follow my logic.  It just doesn't add up.

Another problem with reincarnation is that instead of seeing the animal world as here for our benefit, many cultures will not kill animals or insects for fear that they are killing someone's relative.  Consequently, people in such cultures suffer from insect born disease and hunger.

Ultimately, I don't see how the concept of reincarnation fits at all with my understanding of the Christian faith.  The scriptures say, it is given to man once to die, and then the judgement.  Hebrews 9:27.  This simply means to me that this is our chance, in this life to recognize and respond to God or not.  After death, we are judged and we spend eternity in the place that God has prepared for those that love him, or in the place that God has prepared for those who are selfish and perfer not to love God.

So, thats my take on reincarnation.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, July 4, 2011


I hear about scams on the radio.  They never happen to people I know.  Until last week.  There is something that has come in vogue with some young people that you need to know about.  Young people can get into some very interesting things.  When I was a kid you could sniff glue.  Over the years i have watch fads of shoplifting, graffiti, car surfing, and the list goes on.

Well there is a scam that some young people are running.  They call up one of their "friends." Acquaintances really, maybe someone that you met a few times at a party.  You are facebook friends.  They call up with some convincing story about how they need help with a check. 

Since you are kind, and you want to be their friend, you consider helping them.  If you do deposit the check and give them the money, in a few days you will find out that the check is bad and this person is not a friend.

There are a few young people in our area that are doing this.  Don't allow your teens or young adults to fall for it.  The results can be painful.

As I walk through this experience with my family, I am appreciative of the Christian character that resides within my family, our friends, and our church.  There are a few people out there that could benefit from some lessons in Christian character.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

to my odd friend

Someone posted a comment about not being accepted in church.  Here it is:

I am one of those people who are a Christian but do not go to Church. There are millions of us and we all have a different story I am sure. With me, it's not that I don't want to go to church. It's that the churches really don't want me or accept me. I have nuerological and mental differences. I am completely harmless but I can be exceptionally odd at times. People don't want to deal with me. It's not lack of trying, I have 2o some years of effort. The churches can claim they are accepting and that they want you, but their actions are louder. If you can't fit the mold, there's the door. Sorry if it hurts your christian ears but its true. Feel free to take a walk in my shoes. 

 I got the impression that the experience that this person describes over a 20 year period did not include a stint at Woods chapel.  I want to say to you my friend, not all churches are the same.  I am sure that our church would welcome you and care for you.  We have wonderful people and a wonderful Stephen Ministry program.  If you live in this area, please send me an email or call the church and let's have a cup of coffee. 

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

free gifts

I was reading a book, kind of a Dave Ramsey style book on responsible living.  It was called "Living rich for less" by Ellie Kay.  The subtitle to the book is "create the lifestyle you want by giving, saving and spending smart."

one of the things that I really liked in her book was a list of "free gifts."  Things that you can give to another that don't cost anything, but were really cool.  Here is the list:

Twenty Priceless Free Gifts
Fix broken fences by mending a quarrel.
Seek out a friend you haven’t seen in a while or who has been forgotten.
Hug someone and whisper, “I love you so.”
Forgive an enemy, or at the very least pray for him or her.
Be patient with an angry person.
Express gratitude to someone in your world.
Make a child smile.
Find the time to keep a promise.
Make or bake something for someone else – anonymously.
Speak kindly to a stranger, and tell him or her a joke.
Enter into another’s sorrows, and cut the pain in half.
Smile. Laugh a little. Laugh a lot.
Take a walk with a friend.
Kneel down and pet a dog.
Lessen your expectations of others.
Apologize if you were wrong.
Turn off the television and talk.
Pray for someone who helped you when you were hurting.
Give a soft answer even though you feel strongly otherwise.
Encourage an older person.

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, July 1, 2011

marital advice

I am not very good with marital advice.  I am not even sure how to spell it.  But I was talking to a couple the other night and I have one good thought to share.

What ever you did together that you enjoyed when you were dating, keep doing it.  Find the time for those things that you so enjoyed when you were dating.  Maybe you went to listen to music.  Maybe you played tennis.  maybe you wandered in museums.  Whatever it was, make time to do it.

It is amazing how many people get busy with life and stop doing the very things that brought them together in the first place.  Engaging in such activity can actually be a healthy distraciton from other problems. 

So, what ever it was, go do it.  Royals games.  Bowling.  Pizza.  Golden Tee. Tennis. 

It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.