Life Lessons


17
Jan 2018
The Spiritual Gift of Snow

Today I have had dozens of things I wanted to do: several folks I wanted to visit, phone calls to make, projects to check on, planning and prep to keep working on, an exciting small group time this evening, even building permit to pull for my pending home renovations. But the pause button has been pushed. And not by me. Mother Nature did it. Winter wonderlands and work schedules don’t go so well together in North Carolina. When it snow, as it has been doing for much of the day, most things......

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16
Jan 2018
Faith in a Hurry

I have made it through the first 11 Chapters of Matthew (the first 9 days of reading through the New Testament).  Here are a couple of things that have stood out to me over the past couple of days of reading: Matthew seems to write in a fast pace.  It almost feels like Jesus is in a hurry.  As soon as he was baptized, his teachings, healings, and other parts of ministry begin with a lot of momentum.  After reading through the Sermon on the Mount, it felt like Jesus was on......

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10
Jan 2018
Freedom & Purpose

If you have grown up in the United States as a citizen, you have no doubt been taught you are free and that freedom is the sine qua non of life. We love freedom. We write books and make movies about freedom. We teach our children about freedom. We craft laws and policy to protect freedom. We fight for freedom. Freedom probably has the top place on the list of priorities for most every American. So, listen to what Paul has to say about freedom in our lives: I have the freedom......

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09
Jan 2018
Listening (Or Not)

Have you ever gotten caught not listening? I have, especially as a child (Okay, yeah as an adult, too!) I can recall so vividly being a kid and getting to sucked in to a television show that I unintentionally tuned out the entire world. And, of course, my mom would start calling for me: “Jason. … Jason? … JASON?!?!” And I never heard her. I was completely oblivious. It’s not that she was calling too softly. By the third or fourth time she was practically yelling and the whole house could hear......

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14
Aug 2017
A Mile In My Shoes

Jerry is an occasional guest on Sunday mornings with our church family. According to him, our family of faith has shown him welcome when other churches have not. And I have heard many within our congregation share how much Jerry has to offer to our community. For example, he shares valuable insights during Bible Studies or in Small Groups and adds a beautiful voice to our singing. From talking with Jerry, he is very aware that many people see him only as a person in need. Yes, he is disabled and on......

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01
Aug 2017
We'll Fly Away

Have you ever heard these phrases: “Jesus lives in your heart.”  “Invite Jesus to be your personal Lord and Savior.”  “It’s all about your personal relationship with God.”  “It’s between you and God.” What about these songs? Jesus loves me, this I know. I’ll fly away. I know whom I have believed. My Jesus, I love Thee. I love you, Lord, and I lift my voice. These are phrases that I have heard and songs that I have sung over and over again in the church.  These phrases taught me that my......

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12
Jul 2017
Don't Know What You've Got...

And don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got till its gone They paved paradise and put up a parking lot. -from Joni Mitchell song “Big Yellow Taxi”   Have you heard that phrase before:  “You don’t know what you’ve got till its gone?”  I have experienced this a little differently in my life–most memorably in college.  I grew up and spent the first 21 years of my life just outside the Roanoke Valley.  Resting in the valley, this area is surrounded by the glorious Blue Ridge......

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11
Jul 2017
A Messy Family

Family can be messy. From those who have become estranged because of some family conflict, to those crazy, eccentric relatives, to siblings who just don’t seem to understand one another, to parents with differing or unrealistic expectations, to you name it…family can be messy. Most of us are uncomfortable with mess. We either want to clean it up, fix it, and mend what is broken. Or we want to steer clear of the mess altogether. After all, if it is out of sight, then it is out of mind, right? The truth......

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16
May 2017
With Utmost Courtesy

I was a Boy Scout for a good portion of my youth. I eventually left scouting because of my love for music and needing to make decisions and priorities for my life. There were things about scouting that I loved…and some that I did not. But to this day, I remember key lessons from scouting which are summarized in the Scout Law: A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent. This law came to mind this week in large part because I have noticed......

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25
Apr 2017
I'm Just a Child

When I was the age my girls are now, I went to church choir practice every week after school.  Surely, church choir is where my love of music began.  We learned music theory, we played different musical instruments, we played musical games, went on musical scavenger hunts, sang about freckles and invisible dogs and we learned to be worship leaders.  We worked hard to perfect the art of standing still on the risers and opening our mouths (3 fingertips wide) at precisely the right time. I remember lots of the songs I learned......

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