Archive | April, 2008

Being the salt unto the world

30 Apr

My pastor sends out e-notes about each week’s sermon and I really liked this one so I thought I would post it.

REAL : Engaging
We seem to have a hard time engaging with people outside the church. Yet, God wants us to engage the lost just as Jesus did. He was so engaging that in just three years, he turned the world upside down. The good news is that if we have accepted Jesus as Lord, He lives in us. The more we yield to Him, the more we become like Him, and the more engaging we are. Our influence is all tied to Jesus and how much we let him take over.

Jesus said we are the salt of the earth, the God-flavor of the earth. But there is good salt and there is bad salt. The more pure salt is, the better flavor it has. On the other hand, salt that has been tainted by earthly elements is undesirable, even toxic – not good for anything except being trampled underfoot. Likewise, our lives flavor the way the world “tastes” the gospel. As we interact with the lost, we leave a “taste” in their mouths, an impression about Jesus and the gospel. The question is: are we going to be pure salt that leaves people with a good taste their mouths and wanting more? Or, are we going to be impure salt, leaving them with a bad taste in their mouths, and wanting to trample the gospel underfoot? I want you, as people of this church, to be good salt – not hypocritical, not religious, not the kind of person that scares people.

Aside from salt, Jesus also said that we are the light of the world – the same thing that He was while on earth. You see, when Jesus comes to live inside us, He wants to shine out through us. We’re not supposed to hide the light, as we often do, behind the darkness of fear or sin; we’re supposed to bring out the God-colors in the world. The question we have to ask ourselves is this: “When I’m at work, when I come home, when I’m driving around my neighborhood, am I projecting light or bringing darkness?” We’re going to project something; if it’s not light, it’s darkness.

So, what is it that makes us engaging and influential? First, we need competence. We, as Christians, ought to be doing a better job than anybody else in the world, without complaint, having a spirit of excellence. People are drawn to those who excel. Second, we need to be people of godly character, living with integrity. This is a rare commodity in the world, and therefore, highly attractive. Third, we must be considerate of others. Be helpful. Look for ways to serve others. Consider them better than yourself. Fourth, we have to communicate. Yes, we need to live the gospel, but that isn’t enough by itself. We also have to speak it – not in a preachy, religious or condescending way, but with gentleness and respect. Finally, we need courage. For some reason, people are drawn to people of courage. Keep in mind that God is with us and wants us to share the gospel with others. Ask Him to give you the courage you need. He will do so as you commit to engaging the lost around you.

We are all called to be salt and light. None of us are exempt. Are we going to be good salt or bad? Are we going to let our light shine or hide it under a basket? As we go about our daily lives, let’s all seek to live in a way that is truly engaging, leaving a good taste in people’s mouths, and allowing the light of Christ shine so brightly though us that the lost all around us are irresistibly drawn to Him!

I love Daddy?

28 Apr

My 20 month old has on a I love my daddy shirt. I told her it said I love my daddy and she said I love daddy. What about mommy? I said don’t you love mommy? She said in her toddler words “no”. I am with her 24/7 and she says I love daddy first. She did say mama at two months old first so I guess we are one for one.

Hannah Montana/Miley Cyrus

25 Apr

Entertainment Tonight came on as I was passing by the TV. My jaw dropped open as I heard Miley Cyrus is posing topless for Vanity Fair and her dad is right there for it all. Hello, she is 15. She is a role model for little girls, tweens and teens everywhere. I am so appalled that a parent would let their child pose topless or nude for anyone. We purposely keep our girls away from this stuff just because 5 and 6 year olds should not be thinking about boys and relationships which is what most of her music is about. As a father how could he let her do this. I don’t care if her arm is covering her breasts this is absurd to say the least. There are also racy photos of her that are all over the internet where she is posed with some guy and half naked. Some of her Disney friends are speaking out that she is just a Diva and that is what Divas do but that is crazy. I really thought she was different but it seems she is just another Brittany.

Update: Well, today on the Today show Miley is apologizing because of the racy photos in Vanity Fair. She says, “I am embarrassed.” She said she was tricked into taking them by the photographer and they were supposed to be an artistic expression. The magazine said her managers and parents were there the whole time. The most provocative was the one where she does appear topless but her back is turned. I don’t care if you see breasts or not for a star who is a role model for young girls and promotes her self as a good girl, etc. the appearance of the pictures is most disturbing. I am glad that moms and dads are standing up saying something. No one seemed to care that Jamie Lynn Spears got pregnant and she was also a role model for this same age group so finally someone stands up to say, if you are a role model and pride yourself in purity then you should act in accordance of that message.

However, I will cut the girl and her parents some slack. I think it was a bad judgment call on her part. Her father, mother and little sister had actually left and Miley stayed to finish up. Her grandmother and teacher were on the set so someone should have stopped her but she gave into the photographer who suggested the provacative photos. They say at the time Miley did not see anything wrong with it, it was an “artistic expression”. However as I said before for hundreds of girls around the world who are looking up to her, this was a foolish choice. Her apology is noble and I am sure in time this will blow over. Hopefully she will make wiser decisions in the future.

Twenty is the new male midlife crisis

23 Apr

I have several friends who are in the late 20s or early 30s that spouses just decided they did not want to married and have families anymore so they walked out. I don’t understand what part of the marriage vows they missed. It must of been till death do us part. I think twenty is the new age for a midlife crisis. You no longer want to be responsible so you leave. What they don’t realize is you no longer have the right to be selfish when you get married and especially when you have children. You cannot just leave because you don’t want to do this anymore. What about your wife who you promised to love and cherish through sickness and health, during good and bad. What about your children who adore you more than life itself. You have no right to just walk out. Buck up and be a man.

I know lots of people this has happened too and I know there are a lot more out there. The sad part is they don’t see that they did anything wrong. “what’s the big deal?” The big deal is now your wonderful, beautiful, loving, loyal wife who chose to keep her vows is now a single parent with no one to share her life with and has to cry herself to sleep sometimes because she does not understand why you just decided not to be married anymore. You sweet, loving, beautiful and smart children. What about them? How has this changed their life forever? What do they think or feel? You just left. No explanation or allowing them to ask you why. You just left. You don’t have the right to just walk out or to cheat. If you choose to get married, no matter how you are feeling or not feeling, you need to stay and work it out.

When all of us wives and some husbands took their vows it was forever. I am not talking about those who are in a violent relationship. I am talking to those men or women who are so selfish that they cheat or just walk out on their spouse. It is going on too much and I am sick of seeing my close friends suffer at the fact these men are cowards for just ditching their responsibility.

Touching

22 Apr
I received this in my email today and it is so sweet and touching! Enjoy!
Newborn’s Conversation with God

A baby asked God, ‘They tell me you are sending me to
earth tomorrow, but how am I going to live there being
so small and helpless?’ God said, ‘Your angel will be
waiting for you and will take care of you.’

The child further inquired, ‘But tell me, here in heaven
I don’t have to do anything but sing and smile to be
happy.’ God said, ‘Your angel will sing for you and will
also smile for you. And you will feel your angel’s love
and be very happy.’

Again the child asked, ‘And how am I going to be able to
understand when people talk to me if I don’t know the
language?’ God said, ‘Your angel will tell you the most
beautiful and sweet words you will ever hear, and with
much patience and care, your angel will teach you how to
speak.’
‘And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?’
God said, ‘Your angel will place your hands together and
will teach you how to pray.’

‘Who will protect me?’ God said, ‘Your angel will defend
you even if it means risking its life.’

‘But I will always be sad because I will not see you
anymore.’ God said, ‘Your angel will always talk to you
about Me and will teach you the way to come back to Me,
even though I will always be next to you.’

At that moment there was much peace in Heaven, but
voices from Earth could be heard and the child hurriedly
asked, ‘God, if I am to leave now, please tell me my
angel’s name.’

God said, ‘You will simply call her, ‘Mom.’

Lift a mother’s spirit, send this to every mother you
know (no matter how old her child is)


Moms

21 Apr

MOTHERS and MOMS

If you send this to just one person, it should make

it all the way around the world by Mother’s Day.


This is for the mothers who have sat up

all night with sick toddlers in their arms,

wiping up barf laced with Oscar Mayer

wieners and cherry Kool-Aid saying,

“It’s okay honey, Mommy’s here.”


Who have sat in rocking chairs for hours on end soothing crying babies who can’t be comforted.


This is for all the mothers who show up at

work with spit-up in their hair and milk stains

on their blouses and diapers in their purse.


For all the mothers who run carpools and

make cookies and sew Halloween costumes.

And all the mothers who DON’T.


This is for the mothers who gave birth to

babies they’ll never see. And the mothers

who took those babies and gave them homes.

This is for the mothers whose priceless art

collections are hanging on their refrigerator doors.


And for all the mothers who froze their buns on metal bleachers at football or soccer games instead of watching from the warmth of their cars.
And that when their kids asked, “Did you see me, Mom?” they could say, “Of course, I wouldn’t

have missed it for the world,” and mean it.


This is for all the mothers who yell at their kids in the grocery store and swat them in despair when they stomp their feet and scream for ice cream before dinner. And for all the mothers who count to ten instead, but realize how child abuse happens.


This is for all the mothers who sat down with

their children and explained all about making

babies. And for all the (grand)mothers who

wanted to, but just couldn’t find the words.


This is for all the mothers who go

hungry, so their children can eat.

For all the mothers who read “Goodnight,

Moon” twice a night for a year. And then

read it again, “Just one more time.”


This is for all the mothers who taught

their children to tie their shoelaces before

they started school. And for all the mothers

who opted for Velcro instead.


This is for all the mothers who teach their sons

to cook and their daughters to sink a jump shot.


This is for every mother whose head turns automatically when a little voice calls “Mom?”

in a crowd, even though they know their

own offspring are at home — or even away

at college — or have their own families.


This is for all the mothers who sent their kids

to school with stomach aches, assuring them

they’d be just FINE once they got there, only

to get calls from the school nurse an hour later

asking them to please pick them up. Right away.


This is for mothers whose children have gone

astray, who can’t find the words to reach them.

For all the mothers who bite their lips until they

bleed when their 14 year olds dye their hair green.


For all the mothers of the victims of

recent school shootings, and the mothers

of those who did the shooting.


For the mothers of the survivors, and the mothers who sat in front of their TVs in horror, hugging their child who just came home from school, safely.


This is for all the mothers who taught their

children to be peaceful, and now pray

they come home safely from a war.


What makes a good mother anyway?

Is it patience? Compassion? Broad hips?
The ability to nurse a baby, cook dinner, and

sew a button on a shirt, all at the same time?


Or is it in her heart?
Is it the ache she feels when she

watches her son or daughter disappear

down the street, walking to school alone

for the very first time?


The jolt that takes her from sleep to

dread, from bed to crib at 2 A.M. to put

her hand on the back of a sleeping baby?


The panic, years later, that comes again

at 2 A.M. when she just wants to hear

their key in the door and know they

are safe again in her home?


Or the need to flee from wherever she is

and hug her child when she hears news

of a fire, a car accident, a child dying?


The emotions of motherhood are

universal and so our thoughts are for

young mothers stumbling through diaper

changes and sleep deprivation…

And for mature mothers learning to let go.

For working mothers and stay-at-home mothers.

Single mothers and married mothers.

Mothers with money, mothers without.


This is for you all. For all of us…


Hang in there. In the end we can

only do the best we can. Tell them

every day that we love them. And pray

and never stop being a mother…


Please pass along to all the mothers in your life.


“Home is what catches you when

you fall – and we all fall.”

Abortion

17 Apr

Ok I talked with a friend last night and I am not going into details but she just found out she is pregnant and she and her husband have been separated off and on for over a year. It is his child and it could not have come at the worst possible time. Many of her family members encouraged her to get an abortion or to give it up. No matter what you are going through abortion is not the answer and adoption since she is married and has two other children is not an option for her. She obviously is not doing either of these. She looks at this baby as a gift even though it is a bad time for her. She cried out for many years to have children and she had five miscarriages before she had her first child and then her second was a surprise also because she has a disease that does makes it extremely hard for her to get pregnant on her own. She had to do IVF with her first child.

I am against abortion. My cousin was not able to have children and she adopted a beautiful little boy that parents did not want him. I think adoption is the best way for those that cannot have children or want to provide a home for another child. Every child is special and valuable . This is my view. You can comment. If you disagree I am not arguing with you. You feel your way and I feel mine.

God knew us before we were born. I have dreamed about every single one of my children with their names before they were even thought about and I know that was from God showing me my girls and their purpose in this life. I know at some point I am going to have a son because I have seen him as a child and as a baby and me being pregnant with him. I am a firm believer that life is precious and sacred and to murder a baby is unthinkable to me. At 8 weeks along I could see my girls kicking, sleeping, moving around and I could see their heart beat on the ultra sound and your going to tell me that is not a person but a thing. They can feel pain and sadness. Human life is a gift! Children are a gift!