You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means

I love Easter! I even love Easter for the stuff that we “serious” Christians should not love it for:

  • small children in new Easter clothes
  • that fake plastic grass you put in the bottom of Easter baskets
  • Cadbury eggs… Oh, thank you heaven above for those eggs
  • the knowledge that the week after Easter they’ll start putting the Christmas displays up at Walmart

I just love this time of year, even for those nonreligious, way over-commercialized things. But, the reason I love Easter the most is because of what this time of year means for people of faith.

We celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ. We were lost in our sin and desperately needed a Savior. The God of the universe became flesh for us, lived a perfect life, died a sacrificial death, all for the purpose of paying the price for us, a debt that He did not owe. Then after three days in the tomb, He rose from the dead putting an exclamation point where the devil wanted to put a question mark.

He’s alive!

The resurrection of Jesus Christ proves that He is who He said He was; that He had the authority to do what He came to do. Easter is awesome.
Every year during this holiday I feel the need to clarify some Christian vocabulary. I think we have trouble with the word Continue reading “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means”

You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means

I love Easter! I even love Easter for the stuff that we “serious” Christians should not love it for:

  • small children in new Easter clothes
  • that fake plastic grass you put in the bottom of Easter baskets
  • Cadbury eggs… Oh, thank you heaven above for those eggs
  • the knowledge that the week after Easter they’ll start putting the Christmas displays up at Walmart

I just love this time of year, even for those nonreligious, way over-commercialized things. But, the reason I love Easter the most is because of what this time of year means for people of faith.

We celebrate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ. We were lost in our sin and desperately needed a Savior. The God of the universe became flesh for us, lived a perfect life, died a sacrificial death, all for the purpose of paying the price for us, a debt that He did not owe. Then after three days in the tomb, He rose from the dead putting an exclamation point where the devil wanted to put a question mark.

He’s alive!

The resurrection of Jesus Christ proves that He is who He said He was; that He had the authority to do what He came to do. Easter is awesome.
Every year during this holiday I feel the need to clarify some Christian vocabulary. I think we have trouble with the word Continue reading “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means”

Wake up!

Below is a writing from the most beautiful of The Addi. My wife has some amazing things to share and teach, but is often reluctant. So, until I can get her to start her own blog, I will continue to steal her stuff and post it here for you.

——————–

Some people like to be scared, I don’t. Some people, like my beloved husband *note sarcastic tone* think it’s hysterical to try to scare me. Thankfully after 16 years of marriage I am catching on to him and can usually avoid it. There is still one device that he will occasionally use that I can barely tolerate having in our home…an alarm clock.

I hate (yes, I know that is a very harsh word and shouldn’t be used lightly, but it is very applicable here) waking up to an alarm clock! I find them to be a tool used by the devil to put me in a very bad mood. I know many people who use them regularly and wouldn’t think of getting up any other way, but for me it is almost a guarantee that the rest of my day will be cranky.

The sad thing is that I have always been this way. I have never appreciated that piercing sound regardless of what setting I had it on. It was always the most wretched sound I can think of!

For me the thought of being yanked from my dream world of slumber in which I am typically playing a role of some kind or being chased down an old empty hall by a guy with the head of Will Smith and the body of a goat while I’m wearing a prom dress, is frustrating and profoundly annoying.

For as long as I have had to use the awful things, they have started my day off on the wrong foot. I feel the need to apologize to my Mom and sister for being so hateful on so many mornings growing up.

Consequently, as a means of maturing in my faith, and trying to save my marriage by not being such a grouch I started earnestly praying about this very subject 12 years ago. Through His amazing grace and forever faithfulness, He planted an idea in my head that seemed so crazy, but a welcomed alternative.

After the birth of my oldest son, God gave me the incredible blessing of being able to stay home with him, and I no longer had much of a need for an alarm clock. I really appreciated this, but there was on occasion a need to be up before my kiddo and I was presented with the same old issue.

That is where this idea was brought to life. As I prayed about having a better attitude, God made it very clear to me that I needed to learn to trust Him more, in all things.

The verse in Proverbs 3 that says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will direct your paths.” began to make a little more sense.

I confessed my weakness of being easily irritated by such a little thing like an alarm clock and asked God to help me have more trust in this. He offered me a solution that has worked for me everyday since.

I trust the Lord to get me up when He feels I need to be up. I ask Him to give me enough time to get done what I need to and He has faithfully woke me without fail for the last 12 years. Even on those mornings when we have had to be up super early, He always gets my attention.

Here’s the kicker, when He wakes me, I better get up! See, this arrangement doesn’t
just depend on Him finding amazingly creative ways to wake me, the other half is me doing my part by obeying Him and getting up when I feel His gentle nudge.

God has been very creative in the ways He wakes me with things like our cat meowing me out of bed, my husband snoring (which is rather unusual) or the traffic outside. There have been a few times when I really think He has simply whispered my name.

Regardless, He wakes me and my day is better, no matter when He decides to do it. That is one aspect of this arrangement that I had not really planned on. His schedule is not always the same as mine. There are many mornings that He will wake me when I am certain it is way too early, usually around 5:00am.

I know many people get up by then and even before, but for me, that is EARLY. He knows that is when it is the quietest in our home and He and I can spend some quiet time together. I would love to say this is the way it always happens, but sadly it’s not. I am very often stubborn and disobedient.

I don’t pretend to ‘get’ all scripture and I am far from a theologian, but I believe God has given me a very practical application to Proverbs 3:5-6. I trust Him in the simple matter of getting me up in the mornings and I seek His will for me in what time my day will begin.

I am so thankful for the privilege of serving a God that cares about even the smallest part of our lives.

God may not be wanting to be your alarm clock, but He is wanting to be be the One you trust, depend on and seek. In the many arenas of your life like marriage, faith, career and family, we need to let Him set the agenda.

When He whispers your name, however that whisper comes, it’s time to wake up!

Wake up!

Below is a writing from the most beautiful of The Addi. My wife has some amazing things to share and teach, but is often reluctant. So, until I can get her to start her own blog, I will continue to steal her stuff and post it here for you.

——————–

Some people like to be scared, I don’t. Some people, like my beloved husband *note sarcastic tone* think it’s hysterical to try to scare me. Thankfully after 16 years of marriage I am catching on to him and can usually avoid it. There is still one device that he will occasionally use that I can barely tolerate having in our home…an alarm clock.

I hate (yes, I know that is a very harsh word and shouldn’t be used lightly, but it is very applicable here) waking up to an alarm clock! I find them to be a tool used by the devil to put me in a very bad mood. I know many people who use them regularly and wouldn’t think of getting up any other way, but for me it is almost a guarantee that the rest of my day will be cranky.

The sad thing is that I have always been this way. I have never appreciated that piercing sound regardless of what setting I had it on. It was always the most wretched sound I can think of!

For me the thought of being yanked from my dream world of slumber in which I am typically playing a role of some kind or being chased down an old empty hall by a guy with the head of Will Smith and the body of a goat while I’m wearing a prom dress, is frustrating and profoundly annoying.

For as long as I have had to use the awful things, they have started my day off on the wrong foot. I feel the need to apologize to my Mom and sister for being so hateful on so many mornings growing up.

Consequently, as a means of maturing in my faith, and trying to save my marriage by not being such a grouch I started earnestly praying about this very subject 12 years ago. Through His amazing grace and forever faithfulness, He planted an idea in my head that seemed so crazy, but a welcomed alternative.

After the birth of my oldest son, God gave me the incredible blessing of being able to stay home with him, and I no longer had much of a need for an alarm clock. I really appreciated this, but there was on occasion a need to be up before my kiddo and I was presented with the same old issue.

That is where this idea was brought to life. As I prayed about having a better attitude, God made it very clear to me that I needed to learn to trust Him more, in all things.

The verse in Proverbs 3 that says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will direct your paths.” began to make a little more sense.

I confessed my weakness of being easily irritated by such a little thing like an alarm clock and asked God to help me have more trust in this. He offered me a solution that has worked for me everyday since.

I trust the Lord to get me up when He feels I need to be up. I ask Him to give me enough time to get done what I need to and He has faithfully woke me without fail for the last 12 years. Even on those mornings when we have had to be up super early, He always gets my attention.

Here’s the kicker, when He wakes me, I better get up! See, this arrangement doesn’t
just depend on Him finding amazingly creative ways to wake me, the other half is me doing my part by obeying Him and getting up when I feel His gentle nudge.

God has been very creative in the ways He wakes me with things like our cat meowing me out of bed, my husband snoring (which is rather unusual) or the traffic outside. There have been a few times when I really think He has simply whispered my name.

Regardless, He wakes me and my day is better, no matter when He decides to do it. That is one aspect of this arrangement that I had not really planned on. His schedule is not always the same as mine. There are many mornings that He will wake me when I am certain it is way too early, usually around 5:00am.

I know many people get up by then and even before, but for me, that is EARLY. He knows that is when it is the quietest in our home and He and I can spend some quiet time together. I would love to say this is the way it always happens, but sadly it’s not. I am very often stubborn and disobedient.

I don’t pretend to ‘get’ all scripture and I am far from a theologian, but I believe God has given me a very practical application to Proverbs 3:5-6. I trust Him in the simple matter of getting me up in the mornings and I seek His will for me in what time my day will begin.

I am so thankful for the privilege of serving a God that cares about even the smallest part of our lives.

God may not be wanting to be your alarm clock, but He is wanting to be be the One you trust, depend on and seek. In the many arenas of your life like marriage, faith, career and family, we need to let Him set the agenda.

When He whispers your name, however that whisper comes, it’s time to wake up!

God bless the mess

Sometimes we need to look at what we’re not looking at.

Coming into work each day is pretty routine, unless it’s the day after services. I must admit, walking into my office on those days is usually frustrating.

The reason it’s frustrating? It doesn’t have anything to do with the life of our church, workload, or cantankerous individuals as you might think.

No, the reason it’s frustrating is my children!

Because we have 7 services each weekend, and I want my children to love church and not hate it, we don’t require them to attend every time their parents do. One church (or one children’s church) and they’re done for the weekend.

But on the occasions that mom and dad have to be there and they have to be in the building, I’ve tried to create a sanctuary in my office for them.

There’s a PlayStation for some video game action, movies from Netflix, and a computer to play on… basically a child’s hideaway and a little bit of paradise away from the pews.

Continue reading “God bless the mess”

God bless the mess

Sometimes we need to look at what we’re not looking at.

Coming into work each day is pretty routine, unless it’s the day after services. I must admit, walking into my office on those days is usually frustrating.

The reason it’s frustrating? It doesn’t have anything to do with the life of our church, workload, or cantankerous individuals as you might think.

No, the reason it’s frustrating is my children!

Because we have 7 services each weekend, and I want my children to love church and not hate it, we don’t require them to attend every time their parents do. One church (or one children’s church) and they’re done for the weekend.

But on the occasions that mom and dad have to be there and they have to be in the building, I’ve tried to create a sanctuary in my office for them.

There’s a PlayStation for some video game action, movies from Netflix, and a computer to play on… basically a child’s hideaway and a little bit of paradise away from the pews.

Continue reading “God bless the mess”