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!

Don’t read this blog… unless…

Don’t read this blog… Unless you’re ready to seriously interrupt your day; your life.

I’m serious.

I’m currently in rural Nebraska attending an annual meeting of our two state convention’s denomination. These are all really good people (except that one guy, but that’s another story), everybody loves the Lord and makes a real effort to get along.

But, by the very nature of this meeting, between the sermons, the praying and the singing they try to conduct some business and take a few votes (by the way, worship and voting should not exist in the same sentence, but that’s another blog).

Last night at our first gathering, there was some tension. Not too bad, handled well and Godly, but it reminded me of my days pastoring in Texas where professional ministers in freshly pressed suits and coiffed hair tore each other apart with words like ‘brother’ and ‘ fellowship’ sprinkled in their tirade.

Honestly, I have always been bothered by disunity in the body and the way we handle our disagreements. But, what’s bothered me the most are the subjects of our feuding.

The things that we scrap over are almost never a big deal! A percentage of this, the wording for that, picking who is in charge of what. Most of the time these things fall into the category of “stupid junk,” it’s a file in my lower right desk drawer at work.

Continue reading “Don’t read this blog… unless…”

Where am I?

So, have you ever been lost? I mean flat out, turned around, no clue, GPS wouldn’t help lost.

I remember driving from Great Bend, Ks, to some secluded mountain park in Colorado that I couldn’t get you to today if you paid me a million dollars. I was an early grade schooler with the family at an annual family reunion.

At some point in the afternoon the kids were getting hungry and restless, but dinner was still a couple hours away. That’s when my step dad and uncle decided to take the kiddos on a little mountain hike.

You know, something just long enough to distract the kids and be back in time for the big ol’ potluck.

It was fun at first, and as a kiddo, I wasn’t keeping track of time, but even a mildly ADD child like myself could tell we’d been out there too long.

So, I started paying attention to some details before I made the discovery:

  • Step dad and uncle kept having us rest while they stepped aside for a ‘whispered’ argument
  • Uncle took off his T-shirt and started tearing strips off and tying them to trees
  • The look of terror on their faces when we kept finding those pieces of his shirt

It all lead to my conclusive discovery: there was no denying it, we were lost!

Though the adults never admitted it, all the kiddos new we were lost when we emerged from the tree line just after dark and all the mommas lost it.

Lots of hugging’ and cussin’ (the former at the kids, the latter at the men).

It’s a painful thing to be lost. It’s a scary thing to be lost and not know it.

Still, lostness is one of the dominant issues of the gospel.

  • The story of Genesis describes the beginning of our lostness.
  • The Old Testament chronicles a people of lostness.
  • The Gospels find the answer to lostness.
  • The entirety of the New Testament is manual for lostness recovery.

In fact, Jesus gave His personal vision/mission statement in Luke 19:10 when He said, “The Son of Man came to seek and save that which was lost.”

That’s what Jesus is all about, the reason He came and the purpose of the cross and the grave. Lostness is a condition that is curable, and Jesus doesn’t have the answer, He is the Answer.

I don’t think there is a Christian alive who denies the centrality “lostness” as a biblical theme. We are even grateful, awestruck and worshipful about it. One of the church’s favorite songs includes the line, “I once was lost but now I’m found.”

The problem isn’t with our own appreciation for being found, forgiven, rescued and redeemed. The problem is the disconnect for those who are still lost.

Pastor Perry Noble has said, “Found people find people.”

Pastor Ed Young, Jr, echoed, “The radically rescued, rescue radically.”

We need to rekindle an urgency, a passion, a fire for reaching the lost!

It is our responsibility.

Our church is about to start a series called LOST focusing on the 3 parables of Jesus concerning lostness. We often see the parable of the lost sheep, the lost coin and the prodigal son as messages of grace and mercy for those who have wandered and squandered in life.

But, if you read closely, Jesus had a deeper meaning. Obviously, grace and mercy extended to the lost is an appropriate application of these stories.

However, the fact that Jesus told all three stories in a row, to an audience of the over-churched (known as the pharisees), in response to church people talking smack about the lost gives these three stories a much dire inference.

Jesus wasn’t talking to the lost… He was talking to the found. He was making it very clear that found people find people, the radically rescued rescue radically and that if we are going to be like Jesus we have to be about His mission: to seek and save the lost.

So, here’s what we are going to do: pray for those you know who are not going to church, invite them to services with you (again and again and again), serve them in whatever ways you can that will draw them to Jesus, and talk to them about what Jesus means to you.

By the way, on that last one, you can’t really mess up your own story… it’s your story, so, have no fear.

Whatever church you attend, make sure that you are on a mission. This weekend, bring someone with you because if you are going to be like Jesus, you have to make your passion, mission and desire seeking what He is seeking.

The Man I Should Be

This is my prayer response to Psalm 15. Hit me like a hammer…

Psalm 15:1 Lord, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill?

Lord, I really want to be a man who is close to You. I don’t want to visit You on weekends, or keep in touch with You throughout the day. I want to ‘dwell’ with You. To walk with You, and run with You, to serve You with a passion up close and personal. To live on Your holy hill would be to finally arrive. Lord, may my eulogy include these words… “He dwelled with God.”

2 He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart

Your word is clear, if I am to dwell with You, there are some standards You have for Your traveling companions. Blameless is not a word I would use to describe me… ever. Even by comparison to other human beings I clearly see my frailties and faults. But, I am overwhelmed that You see me through two different lenses. These are ways that I cannot begin to see myself, but I am continually overjoyed that You see me. First, You see my effort. Like a child learning to walk You do not expect me to run as an Olympic athlete. You cheer and support and pick me up when I fall, so long as I am running towards You and not away. Still, even when I run away… You chase me. Second, although I never have been blameless and seldom speak the truth of my heart, You see me through the veil of Jesus Christ. So, to You, I am as blameless as Your Son. I could not be more grateful.

3 and has no slander on his tongue, who does his neighbor no wrong and casts no slur on his fellowman,

To dwell near You Lord, I need to dwell well near others. Correct my tongue and keep me from speaking the things that would never come out of Your mouth. Let me live toward my neighbors as one that embraces Your Golden Rule, who generously breaths out the benefit of the doubt to all and who breaths in peace and unity at all costs. God, please let my life before others never be a hindrance to my life with You.

4 who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the Lord, who keeps his oath even when it hurts,

May I be sickened in my stomach by the same things that sicken You. Evil, thievery, judgementalism, dishonesty, brokeness and pain. May I not be able to stand the things that You will not stand for, and may my fear and reverence for You lead me to action, passion, purpose and plans, again and again. Let my courage not waver in the face of Your adversary, embolden me to pick up where others leave off and challenge me with carry the banner that You place in my hands that I might run to the center of the battlefield. When it costs too much, when it risks everything, when it defies all logic, when the pain is too great… may I keep my oath, even when it hurts.

5 who lends his money without usury and does not accept a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things will never be shaken.

Let me not find comfort in acting as others do, allowing compromise to make me greedy, proud or mean; at least, not more than I already am. May I never take a thing at the expense of another, even if it’s “Just the way it is” and “Everybody else is doing it.” May I value others as highly as You do, may I never be shaken by the empty promises of a broken world, and may I always value my testimony above anything else this world can offer. It’s the only personal picture I have of You. Lord, let me never sell out; for I am already purchased.

God I truly want to dwell with You. And, I know that I have slummed with my sorrows and camped out with my sins. But, I am ready to change my life. I am ready to live for You. I am ready to live in You.

I am ready to be the man I should be.

Hide and Seek Anyone?

Where is your hiding place? Wherever it is, is it safe? Is it really a place of refuge?

As believers, we are allowed to have a safe place for difficult times, but we need to make sure it is really the refuge that God intends for our protection and safety.

This quick study of Psalm 11 reminds us of where we need to go when we need a hiding place.

A Little Hide And Seek, Anyone? from Andy Addis on Vimeo.

The Lord Is in His Holy Temple

Psalm 11 To the choirmaster. Of David.

1 In the Lord I take refuge;

how can you say to my soul,

“Flee like a bird to your mountain,

2 for behold, the wicked bend the bow;

they have fitted their arrow to the string

to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart;

3 if the foundations are destroyed,

what can the righteous do?”

4 The Lord is in his holy temple;

the Lord’s throne is in heaven;

his eyes see, his eyelids test the children of man.

5 The Lord tests the righteous,

but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.

6 Let him rain coals on the wicked;

fire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.

7 For the Lord is righteous;

he loves righteous deeds;

the upright shall behold his face.

Between you, me and the bedpost…

I love expressions. You know, the things people say so that they can drop just the right cliché at the right time and appear wise.

We’ve all got them. Some we read from a book, others came through generational transmission (from your parents, that is), and still others found their way into the storehouse of our collective memory via the world’s greatest resource of miscellaneous knowledge… email forwards.

Here are a few you might recognize:

  • If you can’t beat them, join them. This works pretty well until you’re talking about the IRS. They’re really not looking for recruits.
  • Give them an inch and they’ll take a mile. Actually, this one works for the IRS, too. No further comment (Just kidding IRS guys, I don’t mind paying taxes to be a part of this great country… please don’t audit me).
  • Give them enough rope to hang themselves. To me, this one is just a little too morbid comment on, and it just doesn’t make sense. Isn’t a shorter rope better for hanging. Not that I ever want to find out! Continue reading “Between you, me and the bedpost…”

Getting degunkified

Cleaning out the muck and mire of our lives, we need to remove the junk that flowed into, but never flowed out of our lives.

It’s a process called confession that comes with a promise from God: He is faithful, He will forgive, He will heal.

Don’t miss out on the incredible Christian discipline called confession. It’s how we get degunkified!

Untitled from Andy Addis on Vimeo.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

So What?

If I have to go on one more extended hunt for the TV remote, I am gonna lose it!

Seriously, if I come into the living room one more time and that remote is not in the little basket where all the remotes go, even the ones that control things we’re pretty sure we don’t own anymore, I am going to ground everyone in the family.

Even Kathy.

OK… I’m not that stupid, but it seriously does tick me off.

I have watched my boys argue, fight, whine and wrestle for the remote. Usually, I can understand why they want to score that prize, but sometimes they really throw me for a loop.

Sometimes they will battle and steal the remote in the midst of a program only to… do nothing.

  • No channel change.
  • No volume change.
  • No menu guide check to see what we’re watching, when its over or what else is on.

They just pry it out of the other’s hand, and hold it! What good is that?

After musing this puzzle on several occasions it finally hit me: “They don’t want the remote, they just want to be in control.” Continue reading “So What?”

I’m All Out Of Love

For those who are not geographically aware of this bloggers location, the following statement won’t mean much:

It’s State Fair time!

Living three blocks from the fairgrounds is a good or bad thing depending upon what you think of the fair.

The Addis from high atop the Weenie Wheel.
The Addis from high atop the Weenie Wheel.

I get most of my fair jollies just sitting on the front porch. Watching the parade of happy people walking to the fair early in the day as they park somewhere beyond my house.

And, then, I am blessed with the occasional treasure of seeing the exact same people coming back later that night… transformed.

Tired, broke, sun burnt or freezing (it’s Kansas, you know) and almost always “less happy.”

This people watching is a little thing I have learned to enjoy in the last seven years of living here in Hutch. I do it every year as I listen to the concerts from the comfort of my porch swing.

You know what else doesn’t change?

The Fair!

That’s amazing to me.

  • They set up the rides in the exact same place that they did in previous years (although some of the rides change).
  • They do the concerts in the exact same venues as every year gone by (although some of the artists change).
  • They have the same vendors in the same booths making the same claims as they did in every year past (although some of the prices change).

And, honestly, I love it. Continue reading “I’m All Out Of Love”