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Monday Before Easter

So I heard the news of the bombings throughout the weekend.  Bombings of Syria and bombings in Egypt. Then shootings in another school in Southern California.  And I remember this is why Jesus came.  We are so lost on this big planet.  We can't figure it out.  How to get along and how to coexist and how to sustain peace.

I watched the video of the police officer who stopped the suicide bomber and made him go through the metal detector.  Such a small act saved many lives.  The officer probably just thought I'm doing my job, but he was extending life for people without realizing it.

As a one of us on this planet I find myself wishing I could change it.  I wish I could change people to not hate.  Make them not judge.  Cause them to be peaceable.  But then I start focusing on how I really want them to just be like me?  And I'm not so sure I'm the best model.  It hit me that maybe I shouldn't be focusing on trying to change people so much.  But as a Christ follower ra…

Back to the Blog

I've got to start writing again.  Even if no one sees it.  It is an enormous release and relaxer for me. So I'm going to try to end the days with some meaningful or gleeful or totally abstract words that if you read may or may not make an impact.  But they will be mine.

I'm not going to jump back in with some long expose.  Let's keep it light.

Top 3 and Bottom 1 of the day.

1.  Deci and Sinatra:  My daughter is studying Frank Sinatra for a project at school.  I can't tell you how happy this makes me.  I didn't discover Sinatra until after high school.  But Old Blue Eyes is timeless.  She actually said to me today that "Fly me to the Moon" was her favorite.  Makes a dad smile.

2.  Mike at Bible Study:  There is a guy who goes to church with us named Mike and he is an amazing blessing.  He zips in sometime during the week to check the baptistry.  See if it needs drained and cleaned or some chlorine or whatever magic potion he has in that bottle.  It…

Proverbs 11:11

Upright citizens bless a city and make it prosper, but he talk of the wicked tears it down. Proverbs 11:11
I don’t know if we think about blessing our city near enough.  I’m enamored with it. And to be honest I used to be the opposite.  I was the guy who always griped about what the city wasn’t doing and how there wasn’t anything fun to do in the city and when I grow up I’m not living here.  That was me.  But it is funny how time, perspective, and scripture can help to change a man.  
A pastor at a conference I attended recently said we need to be critics less and students more.  It’s easy to criticize things we don’t like or agree with, but it’s not really a fair criticism until we know the subject.  When it comes to our city, we need to become students of it.  Do you know our city council?  Do you know our mayor?  Do you know the Parks and Rec director?  Have you listened to their ideas for what the future could hold?
If we are walking upright then we should become a blessing to our cit…

Proverbs 7:21

So she seduced him with her pretty speech.  With her flattery she enticed him. Proverbs 7:21
It really has to do with our insecurities.  We want to say something so that someone will think we are special.  Men want to be impressive and be revered.  Women want to feel loved and desirable.  And we all turn to our words to get a cheap injection of it.  And most of the time we go down the roads of pretty speech and flattery because we were to weak and lazy to do it right.  
Let me explain.  We many times choose the cheapest product.  It takes the least resources to accomplish the task.  We might get Dr. Thunder instead of Dr. Pepper.  Cocoa Rocks instead of Cocoa Puffs.  And for the most part we are satisfied.  There might be slight differences, but we are okay with it, because the product is cheaper, which means we had to work less for it.  I remember when that paradigm shifted for me.
It was the day I discovered Cottonelle toilet paper.  
See I had always been taught just to get the toilet p…

Proverbs 5:21

For the Lord sees clearly what a man does, examining every path he takes. Proverbs 5:21
So much of our life is hidden at varying degrees from various people.  The first and last of my days usually spent in my bathroom or on my couch are reserved to me.  My wife and kids are spectators to the majority of the time in my home.  It is usually a comedy by the way.  Co workers see me daily at work.  Life group hangs out with me once or twice a week.  Friends get some time here and there.  And on Sunday the whole church gets just a peek at what makes me, me.  
But God sees it all.  He sees it clearly.  So clearly that he knows intention behind decision.
Intention.
I would love to say that the reason I played football was to use the abilities God had given me to create a platform to share his name to the world around me.  My intentions, looked something a bit different.  Girls and glory (mine not God’s).  It was really shallow.
And God knows our intentions.  We can trick people with false humility …

Proverbs 4:23

“Above all else, guard your heart, for it affects everything you do.” Proverbs 4:23
There is a term I heard so much growing up that was used synonymously with salvation. It was this: “Give your heart to the Lord.” And the recent church has got up in arms about how this is bad theology and I think they are right. Our salvation is not based on our giving God anything. From what I can tell it is based on our belief in Jesus as our Savior. So I understand why people don’t use it as much anymore. I understand the teaching correcting it.
But if I’m honest . . . I really like it.
Not as a theological statement on salvation, but as a love story.
For me there was this moment when the beauty of God’s love became as clear as I've seen it on this side. His love became so much deeper than all the longings that the world has to offer. His promises were so much richer than anything I’ve ever seen.
Career, money, power, notoriety, toys, houses, relationships: they all make offers toward our hearts. …

Proverbs 3:3

“Never let loyalty and kindness get away from you! Wear them like a necklace; write them deep within your heart.” Proverbs 3:3
I started thinking about the things that can “get away from you” today. Race cars get away from people.
“Dale Jr, what happened in the second curve on lap 53?”
“Well Stan, she just got away from me, you know.”
Diets.
“Hey, I thought you were on a diet?”
“I was, but I saw this pizza buffet and it just got away from me.”
Two year olds.
“How did Harlow get in the fire ant bed?”
“I was watching her, and then this football play on TV, and she just got away from me.”
These things usually happen against our best intentions. The writer says to put loyalty and kindness around your neck. Let people see it. Our own pride and ego tries so hard to make us unloyal thinking that if we talk down those we are under or our bosses that in some way we shine brighter than them. But loyalty squeezes humility out of us. Instead of talking down those ahead of us, what if we were honest with t…