Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Second Chances

God is nurturing each one of us until we succeed.
Let's share this love with others!
A couple of weeks ago, I rode my bike to the hospital to visit a patient.  I love bicycling, but going to the hospital can be kind of tricky… When I drive, I just walk in.  When I bike, it’s a little more of a process.  (I will be that awkward guy who you may see putting on a clean shirt and pants over his biking clothes in random parking lots.)  Anyway, I was just buttoning up my shirt when a couple of guys approached me.  They looked kind of rough, and I immediately judged them.  I thought they may be trying to steal my bike, but I decided I would say hello to them anyway.  Fortunately, they responded in a very friendly manor.  We talked about bikes for a bit, and when they found out I was a pastor, they asked for a prayer.  It was really an incredible moment!  It was also a really awkward moment, as I was still wearing my biking shorts and was in the middle of buttoning up my shirt, but it was a wonderful time of prayer.

It’s so easy for me to judge the stranger. I am guilty of this all the time, but if I had let my judgments get the best of me, I never would have had this wonderful experience.  God sees us each as we are, and God loves us just as we are.  The scripture lesson we are looking at this week discusses giving one another a second chance.  God will keep nurturing us until we succeed, and we have the opportunity to do the same for one another. 

God’s Peace and Blessings!!!


Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Living in Lent

So, babies get sick… a lot! It seems like as soon as our kid recovers from one illness, he will catch something else.  That means my wife and I are always low on sleep, and we are forever trying to chase him down to wipe his nose. (Quite the process!) It’s getting a little exhausting... However, this is just what babies do, and we just have to try and care for our little guy as best as we can.

Providing for others can be difficult, but when I see a child suffering, I want to go out of my way to help.  However, there are other people that I find harder to empathize with.  They seem ready to tear others down in order to life themselves up. (This is certainly true for all of our politicians!) In this season of Lent, I want to be better at giving people the benefit of the doubt.  I want to start to get rid of preconceived stereotypes, and I want to look at each person as a child of God.  I hope to be better at seeing each person as someone in need of love.  Are you called to look at the world differently this season?  Is there some way you can incorporate more grace and love into your life?  I hope we can all give one another the benefit of the doubt and reach out to a world in need.



Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Moments of change...

Earlier this week, I had to take a few hours to finish childproofing our house.  This was probably something I should have done a long time ago, but it always seemed like I had more time.  However, the baby has recently made it his full time job to try and pull everything out of our cabinets that he can.  Everything he can reach in the pantry has been thrown on the floor.  He’s pulling out pots and pans to bang on, and just a couple days ago I caught him trying to run off with the toilet bowl cleaner.  Needless to say, it was long past time to get the house ready. 

It’s amazing to me how quickly everything changes.  A month ago, our baby was a totally different person.  It’s hard to imagine what things will be like a few years from now… As humans, we are always changing.  It’s easy to watch the milestones of our 10month old baby, but I think growth and change are important at any age.  This week, we are looking at a Bible story of a very powerful moment for Jesus and the disciples.  It was a mountain top experience that changed everyone.  The disciples saw the power of a sacrificial love, and this forever changed their lives.  Today, I wonder how you have seen the power of love… Have there been moments where love showed up and forever changed you?  I hope we can all take some time in the days ahead to open our hearts and really feel God’s Spirit!