Thursday, October 31, 2013


If you missed this story at church on Sunday I have to tell it again.

I was 14 and my mom dressed me up as a mummy for a Halloween party.  This is the picture and I still remember her taking it!

There were several hundred kids at the party at the local Christian church
.  I won a prize for the best costume and I danced to the long version of In-a-godda-da-vida all 17 minutes of it!

For the many times that I have questioned my childhood and discussed it's dysfunction, this was one memory that was a very good one.

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

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tomorrow is Halloween

Tomorrow is Halloween. 

My mom had a big devil.  She was always worried about him and always resisting him.  People that believe in a big devil often spend lots of time talking about him.  They are wasting time that could be directed toward our loving heavenly Father. For more on this topic see:

Anyway, all of this went out the window on Halloween.  My mom loved Halloween!  She would put on scary music, turn the lights down and wait for the kids.  She had a sign with a witch on it that she put on the front door every year that read, "Welcome kiddies, put all your goodies in the box below.  Go quietly and no one will get hurt."

I just want to weigh in on Halloween.  It is not the devil's day.  The devil does not get a day.  he is a created being.  he is not the opposite of God.  he can't be everywhere at the same time any more than Gabriel or Michael, the other archangels.  I am not even capitalizing the word he when I refer to him at the beginning of a sentence.

We should spend our days loving God, not fighting the devil.

Halloween is a great day for kids.  Love them.  Dress them up.  Feed them candy.  It makes for great memories.

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

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Three wonderful ladies

I am thinking about my wife and daughters and how much I love them.  I love my son too.  But I am thinking about my girls today.  All three of them.  This song comes to my mind- a friend of mine got married not too long ago and came down the isle to this.  I loved it.  Here are the words:
Her eyes, her eyes make the stars look like they're not shining. 
Her hair, her hair, falls perfectly without her trying.
She's so beautiful, and I tell her everyday.
I know, I know when I compliment her, she won't believe me.
And it's so sad to think that she doesn't see what I see.
But everyday when she asks me if she looks ok, I say:
When I see your face, there's not a thing that I would change,
cause you're amazing, just the way you are.
And when you smile,
the whole world stops and stares for a while
cause you're amazing, just the way you are.
I love these girls so much.
Here is the youtube link if you want to hear the entire song.
It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Monday, October 28, 2013


Sometimes life brings you a cruel dose of reality.  Sometimes it is my own doing, sometimes it is beyond my control.  It is important when such moments come to you that you don't focus on who is to blame.  If I must take some responsibility for what happened, then that is fine, but that is different that placing blame.

When times are tough, it is not constructive to kick yourself or others.  What is needed is hard work and prayer for a better day.  At the end of every moment of despair, God is still there.  He understands.  He has faced some difficult things too.  We are not alone in our struggles.

The level of a person's mental health is directly related to their ability to see the good even in difficult times.

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

Sunday, October 27, 2013

late bloomers

I am pretty excited by the late blooming iris that is declaring God's glory in my back yard right now.  What a surprise!  What a beauty. 

Now the mums are always in bloom this time of year, but they are beautiful too.

Late bloomers.  Things that may disappoint you in the spring, but bring their joy and beauty later in the year. 

I think a lot of people are like that.  You know they have potential, but they aren't showing it.  Other flowers are going to town, but these folks are just not doing it.  Then one day it happens.  They finish college late, they become a great spouse late, they rise to the occasion, they hit the home run in the late innings.

I am sure I have disappointed God many times in my life.  I am sure that in the minds of many, I was a late bloomer.  [some are still waiting for me to bloom] I made many mistakes in my early days.  But let today be a new day.  Rise to the moment, let your goodness come

out.  Recover from the past.  Become all that God has called you to be.  It is never too late.

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

Saturday, October 26, 2013

on attending church

Being a pastor, I think attending church is a pretty good thing.  Does that surprise you?  I think that we find comraderie, learning and joy by attending church that we would likely miss without it.  There is always the move of the Holy Spirit that just sneaks in some times at church that we might otherwise miss.  Are regarding missions, we can accomplish so much more together!

Recently some friends from church visit

ed Ireland and made the decision to attend worship on Sunday morning even though it was their vacation.  Here is the account of that experience:

We were fortunate enough to win a trip to Ireland.  While the whole idea was golf, some sights were taken in as well.  One Sunday morning, two weeks ago, I dropped the guys off at the golf course.  My lady friend had a relative to visit, so I went to church!  I am sending some pictures of the place.  I thoroughly enjoyed myself!  The service had a total of 30 people, (infant included) and I can tell you it was wonderful!  The organist couldn’t make it that day so we all sang the Hymns the best we could.  The hymns were different than here, ones I’d never heard of, but that’s ok, it’s all in the message.

  The place I visited was    Ardara Methodist Church, officiated by Rev. John Purdy ( the one service at noon)  Rev. Purdy also has earlier church service in another small town called Dunkineely. At high noon the Reverend and the members all arrived.  Not early to make coffee…  just in time to hear the Good Word.  J  They do have a lot going on with the church re: events, youth, etc.  I picked up some pamphlets re: their missions/ministry work. 

   The Reverend wore a collar. Now I’m not that schooled in Methodist history, but being in Ireland he did refer to Wesley some, and it was interesting as the message he spoke that day was one you had spoken of just a couple weeks earlier.  Same idea, just his twist.  It was an enjoyable 1 hr.  So refreshing to sit in a small church, so humble,  I’m planning on sending him a note thanking him for his time.  We visited after church for awhile about the local youth/ missions.  He’s even heard of CRU!  A couple members stayed and visited with me, even offered to have coffee in town but I wasn’t able to. 

    If you’d like to take a peek at some of the pamphlets I picked up let me know. ( I even purchased the Women’s Cook book they were selling.)

I can’t say enough how much that morning was so wonderful.  The sun was shining, the grass was green and I truly felt touched that day by the Lord.

What a great joy she experienced and it all began with a decision to get up and go to God's house.
It's a beautiful day in God's world, be sure to see the good.

Friday, October 25, 2013

when you are hurt

I was talking to someone who was recently hurt.

When you are hurt, it hurts.  500 thoughts go through your head.  Justifying yourself, explaining yourself, trying to fix it, even revenge.

It usually takes a person several days to sleep off such pain.  Several nights of rest to go through the cycles of being hurt.  You think you are over a thing, and it can pop back up.  Healing takes time.

Then one day you wake up and things are better.  The grieving process has done its work.  You know who they are, and you know who you are.  You are not going to change being you.  You are a caring person and caring people feel pain pretty intensely.  You can absorb this.  You can move on.  You can focus on who you are instead of living in reaction to something that has happened.

Anyone can see a beautiful day when the sun is shining and all is well.  It takes a special soul to work through their hurt and keep their chin up.

Keep at it.  It will get better.

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

Thursday, October 24, 2013

when I retire

Someone wrote and asked me about when I retire.  I hope I live long enough to retire.  If I do, what will my relationship with WCC be like?  This is the question that they were asking.

In the strictest sense of Methodist polity, when you retire, you move on.  You don't go back.  You end your relationship and allow the new pastor to lead.  Some churches have kept retired pastors around.  Sometimes it works well, sometimes it does not.

Is it good for Jeff to preach in retirement somewhere else near here?  Is it possible for Jeff to stay on part time in retirement at Woods Chapel?  All of those are things that would need to be discussed at the time and the decision based on what was best for Woods Chapel.  I am 56 and mandatory retirement is 72, so we probably have a few years to think about this.

I believe I have now responded to the question and offered an answer that is as clear as mud.  So we put our trust in God and keep being who we are.

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

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

a day in the life

There are many jokes that are made about how a pastor spends their time.  A youngster at our church recently asked their mom, "what is pastor Jeff's other job?"  Surely this pastor thing is only a part time gig.  Hey, he only works one day a week and half a day at that.

Let me give you some insight into the life of most pastors.

Sundays are up early, worried in heart about how the sermon will go.  Meeting people, trying to get this whole worship thing right.  Meeting with someone after church.  Getting home for a late lunch.  A nap.  Yeah!  Then later in the day, any number of things: a meeting on some program, a trip to the hospital, or a get together with someone who wants to talk.

Getting together with someone who wants to talk.  I generally spend 15-20 hours a week with members who want to talk about something.  Breakfasts, lunches, cups of coffee.  Lots of time investing in people.  It is actually the most rewarding part of what most pastors do.

Meetings with leaders and staff takes up lots of time.  I would guess at least 10 hours per week.  Planning, working on, visioning, encouraging.

Reading.  Get some time in for reading.  Find sermon illustrations.  Learn new stories.   Preparing for presentations.  A class to teach, a class to visit.  Someone has happened by the office and wants to talk.  The Christian bookstore.  My boss called and wants to talk to me about something.  Drive to the district office.  Prepare forms for the all church conference.  Someone's marriage is on the rocks, they are on park 2.  Someone needs financial help, they are on park 3.  Review the financials from last month.  Call someone who has been missing from church.

Staff retreat.  Staff meeting.  Worship meeting.  Leadership meeting.  Personnel Team. Team team.  Men's bowling, yeah!  A respite.  Go for a walk to think some things through.  Work through a response to some issue.  Go help at the Hillcrest store.  Go visit with another pastor.

Answer emails  200 of them.  Give projects to other staff.  Design sermon series for the upcoming month.  Encourage someone whose child does not believe.  Prepare a sermon.

What?  yes, prepare a sermon.  Every Sunday, every week, almost anyway.  For a pastor it seems like Sunday comes 3x per week.

Pray.  Listen for the Holy Spirit.  Work on your rough edges.  Hug people.  Meet them for chicken wings.  Yeah!

All in all, there are plenty of things for pastors to do that keep them busy.  And I love this job, this calling, this life.  Thanks for the opportunity!

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

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


My friend Marti shared this and I had to pass it on........ sort of a celebration of the gift of the human mind that God has given to us.

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy,
it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a tatol mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.
Amzanig huh?

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

Monday, October 21, 2013

you are a bad person

A friend of mine is looking for a church in another town.  They visited one where the general message of the sermon was this: "you are a bad person if....."  If you ever did this, you are a bad person.  If you ever did that, you are a bad person.  If you ever.......... then you are probably going to hell.

Wow.  How crushing.  It is no wonder why people hate the church.  It is no wonder why young people and people of all ages are falling away from church.  Who thinks that they get to tell others who is going to hell?

We cannot forget the message of Grace.  It is not "a" doctrine of the faith, it is "the" doctrine of the faith.  If you take grace out of Christianity, there is nothing left.

Please know that you are loved and cared for by God.  You are precious in His sight.  There is nothing that you can do that would make Him want to throw you away.  God loves us, warts and all.  It's unconditional, and that is what makes it so amazing.

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

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Ralph Waldo Emmerson

Emmerson lived from 1803-1882.  He was a noted American essayist, lecturer and poet.  Not necessarily a Christian, yet he provided much wisdom to the world of his day and beyond.  Here is one of his quotes.

"An individual has a healthy personality to the exact degree to which they have the propensity to look for the good in every situation." 

Lets keep working on that.

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

Saturday, October 19, 2013

old friends

Sometimes I think of old friends.  I tried to catch up to one last year.  I had a good lead.  He was busy.  That's ok.  I don't normally use the full name of anyone in the blog, but in case they ever google themselves, maybe we can rekindle a friendship.  If you know where any of these people are, tell them that they are thought of fondly by Jeff Brinkman.

Mark Stanton [San Jose, California and Glen Ellyn Illinois]
Mark Flammer [San Jose, Calif]
Robin Dominick [San Jose, Calif]
Dallas Moore [Bethel, Ohio]
Vic Heister [Bixby, Oklahoma]
Tim Marcum [Lebanon, Mo]
Roger Grout [Princeton, Mo]

I have been blessed over the years with many friends.  It is sad when you lose touch.  I hope they are well.  I hope that you are appreciating your friendships.  To have a friend is treasure indeed.

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

Friday, October 18, 2013


Sometimes I find myself thinking of the same things over and over.  Or watching the same movies.  Or reading the same book.  Sometimes I feel silly just going over the same things.

Then I realize that maybe I need this to learn.  That if I really want to take something in, it might take repetition.  There is also a savoring that can take place when we revisit something.

It is totally ok to like to eat the same meals, to like to watch the same movies, to love the same music, to consider the same passage of scripture over and over.  Relax and enjoy - there are many good things to experience in this life.

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

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Princeton and Mercer

Princeton UMC [could not find a pic of Mercer]
I spend three wonderful years as the pastor of two wonderful churches in Northern Missouri, Princeton and Mercer.  Because the Bishop does not want us to disrupt the ministry of the new pastor, we are not supposed to go back to former churches.  Consequently, over the last 19 years I have not been back.  Until a week or so ago.

I was afforded the blessed chance to visit with some of the leaders of Princeton and Mercer.  I drove up there with a couple of staff and their District Superintendent.  So I had permission to be there.  We will be working with the churches together on a program over the next few months.

What an amazing blessing it was to see several members that I have not seen for so many years.  Wonderful people who have loved and served their church and are still doing it.  I was so pleased to see them.  It made my heart feel good.

I am a lucky  man.  A fortunate man.  A blessed man.  I have known so many great people in my life.  It is great to catch up with some of them again. 

If you see an old friend this week, hug their neck.

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

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


I don't know if I have posted about this before, but I am going to write about it again today.  A few weeks ago after church, it was all over.  Six services, choir, communion, meeting new folks, talking to old folks.  It was a big day at WCC.  I was about 12:25 and I walked into the sanctuary.  All the hands were shook and almost everyone was gone for the day.

I walked into the sanctuary where so much good stuff had happened during the day, but now it was completely quiet.  It was like the joy was still hanging around.  I was struck with a feeling of how fortunate I am to be your pastor.

Thanks for the opportunity.  I love you guys.

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

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

life lesson

I tried to teach this to my kids.  I have talked about it before.  I am going to talk about it til my dying day.

Bad things are going to happen.  You are going to get kicked in the teeth.  A flat tire is in your future.  You are going to fall down and break your wrist.  You are going to get hit by a pitch.  It is coming.  It may or may not be at your house today, but there is always something coming.

We can't control what difficulty may come.  We can't always control the outcome.  But we can always control our response to the difficulty.  Life is a rose garden that holds both roses and thorns.  They go together.

Be mad for a while if you have to, be frustrated for a while if you have to, but then move out.  Take a deep breath and get back in the game.  Brush the dirt off of your clothes and get back in the batter's box.  When you get knocked down, get back up.  There is no other way.  It is the only choice available to those who would be successful in this life.

God is hoping that we will share the joy, even in the midst of difficulty.  Getting up and taking a step in the right direction is always the healthy move.

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

Monday, October 14, 2013

thou shall not kill

Thou shall not kill.  It is one of the top ten.  I believe it.  I hate killing things.  I don't do it.  Usually.  Except for wasps.  For wasps I will make an exception.  I am sorry but it makes me happy to spray them, kill them and then tear their little houses off of our house.

If you have some of these little nasty guys at your house, call me and I will be glad to swing by and take care of the problem.  After I sprayed it, this nest dropped 26 dead wasps on the front porch. :-)

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

Sunday, October 13, 2013

God's amazing world

So I am on the deck at our house and I notice this big scary bug on top of one of the deck posts.  To give you some perspective, the posts are 8 x 8 inches.

This is a praying mantis.  Methodist variety I believe.  I would move from one side of him to another and he would turn his scary little head and follow me.  He was too scary.  We had to go back inside.

I hope part of your worship today will acknowledge the fact that God is big, giant, amazing and has a great imagination!

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

Saturday, October 12, 2013

spread too thin

the children of Los Pinos, Nicaragua
Someone asked recently about our church being spread too thin.  We did have a discussion about this topic a few years ago regarding international missions.  At the time we were operational in Haiti, Liberia, Jamaica, Mozambique, and Russia.  Maybe other places as well.  There was a sense at the time that we were active in too many places and that some of them held some real challenges as to distance and cost issues.  In response to this, we have not returned to either of our Africa locations.  We still have a sister church in Mozambique, but this has become more of a relationship of emails, letters and funding.  We have no trips planned at the present time.

To make up for these changes and to pull our resources together, we have continued to encourage the Russia Orphanage ministry, the dental work in Jamaica and earthquake relief in Haiti.  We have also introduced the village sponsorship in Nicaragua.  A trip to Nicaragua is in our time zone and the cost is much more reasonable than the Africa trips.  The Los Pinos partnership is also something that any group in the church can be involved with.  It feels to me that we are much more balanced now for our size with operations in Russia, Nicaragua Jamaica and occasionally Haiti.

As to local mission initiatives, we encourage people that have these ideas to build their own teams and  foster their own momentum. In a church this size, there are always going to be many ways that people can be involved. Some of them will be around a long time, others may come and go, and that is ok. Churches need to allow some ministries to live their life and fade into the past. People should always choose the things to be involved in that pull on their heart strings.  That way your work in missions is never forced, but always joyful and fulfilling.

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

Friday, October 11, 2013

the greatest compliment

Now I love all of you readers.  All of you.  I am blessed to have you follow this blog.  Scott C.  Grandma B.  I love you guys.  Marilyn H.  Bobbi Sue.  I love you guys.

But I received the greatest compliment that I have received in a long time when my daughter told me that she was now reading Dad's blog.  Alli I love you and I miss you and you are the best!

Sometimes things happen that just make you happy and you have to share.  I am proud of my kids.

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

Thursday, October 10, 2013


Who is this guy?  If you grew up in Kansas City and you are about my age, you should know.  This is a famous clown who had a TV show.  He had a theme song.  The other day it got stuck in my head.

Who's always smiling never sad it's ________.
Who makes the boys and girls so glad ________.
He's the charming fellow with the big red shiny nose.
Dressed in crazy mixed up clothes from his head down to his toes.

Who has a great big trunk of tricks it's _______.
he'll sing a song or do a dance for you.
When you're sad he'll make you glad.
the very best friend you ever had.
Whizzo the clown that's who.

Now if you remember that song, may it be stuck in your head.  That man is Whizzo the clown.  His real name was Frank Oliver Wiziardi.  He died in 1987, but not after bringing joy to the lives of many children who are now grown up.  Or at least we aren't kids anymore.

One great memory from my childhood.
It's a beautiful day in God's world.  Be sure to see the good.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

change your life

Do you wish to change your life?  Are you in a rut?  I was thinking the other day about something that changed my life.  In fact when I talk to people that I know, almost all of their lives have been changed by this:

Go on a mission trip.  Spend your money [or I mean the money that God loaned to you in this life] spend your money and go somewhere and help people in need.  See their hurt.  See their pain.  Witness real hunger, real poverty, and real despair.  Use a week of your vacation if need be, and spend your money to do this.  Invest your time, talents and treasure in God's work.

Many things have changed me in my life, but going on a mission trip began the work of creating compassion in my heart.  Does your life need a change?  Leave your comfort zone and go into mission for the sake of Christ.

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

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

golf cart rides

So a couple of weeks ago it was Oktoberfest in Lees Summit.  A friend asked me if I could help move some golf carts from the John Knox Village maintenance shop on Pryor into downtown Lees Summit.  They needed them for the weekend event.

I got an image in my head of the old cartoon the "Banana Splits."  They were on Saturday morning, right after the Monkees.  They rode around in golf carts in the beginning of each show.  Gosh does that date me?

So six of us had a golf cart race across town.  Down Pryor to O'Brien, on O'Brien across the tracks to the Downtown Methodist Church and then south to the chamber

building.  I got out to a quick start, but due to a slow cart I came in 4th place.  It was however a wonderful way to spend 30 minutes on a nice cool morning.  Always glad to help the chamber.  Maybe the church could have a golf cart race sometime.  That was fun!

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

Monday, October 7, 2013

our church

Someone asked me recently why I thought our church was worth supporting.  It is a great question.  If you expect people to give their time, talent and treasure to your church, a person needs to be able to answer this

question.  Why is my church worth supporting?

Whether you attend Woods Chapel or another church, I would like to ask you this question, so please answer or post a thought.  Is your church worth supporting?  Why or why not?

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

Sunday, October 6, 2013

to think or rest

Sometimes we come to church and we need to find rest.  Sometimes we come and we need to be challenged.  Someone once said that pastors should comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable.  Do you need to rest?  Then take one.  But the moment you are healed, get up and get back in the game.  Challenge takes us to great places for God.

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

Saturday, October 5, 2013


From an email that I received recently from a friend........

"Life may not be the party that we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance."

I will offer an edited version......
Life may not be the party that you expected, but you can still choose to get up and dance.
Either way, enough said.

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

Friday, October 4, 2013

did you know?

Did you know that not everyone lives like we do?  Like you do, like I do?  If you are reading this, you have a tablet, computer or cell phone.  Many people do not have these luxuries.  Are you planning a vacation?  Do you have a job that gives you vacation time?  Many people do not have such opportunities to take a break from life. 

Do you have a lake house?  Do your cars start and run?  Can you afford a house cleaner?  Lawn service?  Do you have health insurance?  Can you go to the Royals games?  Chief's games?

There is another economy in our world.   And not just our world, but in Kansas City, in Lees Summit. 

Some people take the bus because they have no car.  Some people will never own, but always rent.  Some people must go to the free health clinic.  Some people work second jobs to throw me a bag of peanuts at the Royal's games.  Some people come to the church to ask for food since they can't go to Price Chopper.

Have you noticed all of the places around town that make title loans?  "Checks cashed today."  For a fee.  For a big fee.  But there are so many of these places.  If we are paying attention, it tells us that there are many people who are living a very different standard of living that most of the rest of us.  They are all around us.

So what to do?

First of all, be aware.  Wake up.  Not everyone lives like we do.
Second, understand that they are God's children too.  Although it may not be the job of government to fix all of those problems, God is very concerned about his children.  All of them.
Finally, our lives as Christians are most fully expressed, not by what we believe, but by what we do.

Every time we step out of suburbia to help another, we have become the hands and feet of Christ.  Maybe with practice, it can become not simply a generous interruption but a new lifestyle.  New life is what Jesus is all about, and that might start in our heart, but it can't end there.  New life, real life, is out there.... with God, with his people, caring for the least of these.

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

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Generosity, part 2

I cannot let you off the hook on this one.  Temper these words with yesterday's post, but be careful not to temper them too much.

The heart of the Christian faith is that we learn to spend ourselves for others.  Take up our cross.  Not my will but Thine be done.  This is not optional.  It is not negotiable.  The Christian faith is not something that occasionally interrupts our lives, but is by definition, life changing.  The principles of the faith should dominate our lives, not simply interrupt them.  We don't live our lives and take a break to do something Christian, we are invited to learn to live outside of ourselves.

With that said, why shouldn't we respond to invitations to help?  Why shouldn't we give our time, talent and treasure for the sake of Christ?  No one will die thinking that they should have been less generous, but many in their waning years begin to realize that we have spent much of our lives caring for ourselves.

We are so blessed, and there are so many needs in the world.  How can we hold back our heart toward those in need?  God is looking for people whose hearts are turned towards him and his people.  Please don't ever be annoyed by an ask.  Whether it is a homeless person on the corner, a canned food drive, a blood drive or a pledge drive, every single opportunity like this is an opportunity for us to learn to live as Jesus taught us.   I have never been mad that I gave blood, brought food or made a financial pledge, those actions in fact have been some of the most rewarding. 

Generosity.  For Christians, it is not optional, it is central.  And, it is where we find the joy.

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

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Generosity, pt 1

I am going to let you off the hook on this one.  Occasionally I get complaints that the church is always asking for something. 

  • bring tooth brushes for dental for kids
  • come help clean the hillcrest apartment
  • adopt a child from Russia
  • volunteer to be on a painting crew
  • come to a landscape day
  • bring clothes for Nicaragua
  • spend a Saturday at a Habitat build
  • come sort food at Harvesters

On and on it goes.  I am letting you off the hook.  You don't have to help with any of this that you don't want to.  In fact, we don't want people to feel pressured.  What you do, we want you to do joyfully.  Some ministries will thrive because people feel the call, others will wane and even come to an end because people lose interest.  Ministry should not be forced.

Leaders of ministries have a right to invite you to help.  Your response is up to you.  Church should never burn a person out.  Find the things that you love and jump in with both feet.  Don't worry about the rest of it, no one can do it all.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's post.

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

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

plant a tree

A couple of riddles:

When is the best day to plant a tree?
answer = 50 years ago.

When is the second best day to plant a tree?
answer= today.

Important decisions and great investments will savor your life once you actually put them into gear.

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