At the Year’s End or Your Wit’s End?

In just a few hours from now my family, along with my church will be gathering to praise out the old and praise in the new year. We will worship, have communion, hear an on time Word from our Pastor and pray the New Year in. I am looking forward to what lays ahead for 2015. As I speak and see post of friends and family it seems that others are ready for this year to end. It seems that there have been many that have seen their share of problems and trails.

This year has not been easy for me, or my family. There are times when things just don’t seem fair. Why should I have to explain to my child why we can’t purchase this or that? Or why we can’t go here or there? Is it fair that when I leave my home I feel overwhelmed, and that I just want to run? I find myself driving, crying and end up in the church parking lot, sobbing, and the only words I can say are Jesus, help me.

Yes! I want this year to end! I want the yoke to break! The pain to stop! I want my faith back! I want a miracle! I need Jesus! Am I the only one? I feel as if I am at my wit’s end. And just what is a wit’s end?

In Psalms 107, in verses 24-26, it talks about sailors going out to sea, and the sea starting to get rough, the storms and waves beating the ship. They were fearful, troubled, in verse 27 it says they reeled and rowed, trying to fight the storm. Stumbling like drunken men, at their wit’s end (their wisdom failed them). The Bible allows us to know it will rain on the just and the unjust; the storms are going to come, no matter what. We will reach our Wit’s End. Just like the disciples, while Jesus slept in the bottom of the boat, the storms came, they fought the storm, they lost, and they reached their wit’s end. They thought they would not make it, but finally, someone said, let’s wake up Jesus.

We all know what happen after that, HE spoke Peace. My friend, Jesus is in the boat, in the storm, with you at your wit’s end.

So you may be at the Years End or at Your Wit’s End, but stop fighting the storm, wake Jesus and let Him speak Peace into your New Year. Happy New Year!

Would love to hear more feedback or thoughts, feel free to comment.

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Do You Hear What I Hear? Then Respond!

One of my all-time favorite Christmas songs has to be “Do you hear What I Hear?” right up there with Holly Leaves & Christmas Trees by Elvis. Sitting and listening while our Kids choir sang their rendition, I felt as if I wanted shout it to the mountaintops! Not that I was feeling overwhelmed with Christmas joy, but it was the mere fact that I know someone, more than a few someone’s, I had sent a text to and had failed to get a response in over twenty-four hours.

I must admit, in times past I have not been the best at returning calls, e-mails, or text in a timely fashion. But I have tried to improve, and I believe I have. With today’s technology, is it really possible not to respond to a message in a timely manner unless otherwise just being rude? Be honest, there is voice text, for driving, reminders to hit, you can scan thru them while in your study (bathroom), if nothing else respond with “K” or “np” to let the other person know you received it. Respond, is it really that hard?

Like any leader, sometimes this seems like this can be the most difficult thing to ask of your followers. Why is that?

I can’t help to wonder if the Lord feels the same at times. Is He looking down just ready to scream, Respond! Do you hear me? Can you see what I am doing? Just respond! Jesus tells us more than once, that if we have ears, then use them. If we can hear or see what the Lord is doing, all He wants is for us is to respond. If there is going to be a good relationship, there has to be good communication. There has to be sending forth, receiving, and responding.

Rather you’re a leader, a follower, or maybe somewhere between, work on your response. Let your ears be open to hear, eyes open to see, and respond like never before. You might be shocked at what takes place. It’s called conversation.

Would love to hear more feedback or thoughts, feel free to comment.

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If You’re going to Do It, Do It Right the First Time. A Life Lesson from My Dad.

My oldest son Nate has recently just turned ten. Being the wise and knowledgeable father that I am, I felt it was time to give him a job at the church. I want him to learn at a young age that there is more to ministry then just speaking behind a pulpit. We must first serve. His job is to clean the pulpit that our pastor preaches from each week.

I had the woman who normally cleaned it train him, I made another staff pastor aware of his job and duties to make him accountable. I want him to be consistent, faithful, trustworthy, and build memories from what he is doing and be told to do. While watching him on week, I found myself telling him something I have told him many times before, “Nate, Do it right the first time.” I must have told him time this in the last 3 years a hundred times. I have explained that it saves time to do it right the first, that you only have one chance to do it right. If you’re going to do it, do it right son.

I was really not for sure where I got that principle until tonight while in a text chat with brother and sister. As we begin to share our favorite Christmas stories, family traditions, songs and gifts given and received, I heard the words or maybe I saw the actions of my Dad, If your going to do it, do it right. We did Christmas right. At times we had a lot, at others we didn’t. But we did it right. We kid’s never knew. Why, because he never let us know.

We live life once, for the most part we get one chance to do it right. If we have messed up there is a God that loves us and forgives us and I am thankful for that. I am also thankful for a lesson learned long ago, so however you do it, do it right. So why no do it right the first time.

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Toys VS Hollywood, But Dad Wins!

So it’s Friday night, first night of Christmas vacation, and the kids and I are ready for their normal routine–camp out! For the last five years we have taken just about every Friday night to “Camp Out” in the living room and watch movies. This night was not going to be any different. The twins were already making their request to stop by the mighty box that is red and grab a DVD.

That is when I decided to check out the reviews of a couple of films that my kids were wanting to see. And that is when it hit me, like a sucker punch in the gut.  I read two reviews, from a well-known movie site, about movies based off toys. That’s right, I said TOYS! How could a movie, based on toys that I played with during my childhood, which my ten & eight year old boys are asking for, get a PG-13 Rating? One movie even used a word that starts with the letter after “E” and before “G”. But hey, they only hear it once. Who are they really trying to Transform?

The other review, the one with the green pizza-eating guys in shells, well, at least they don’t swear. Thank the Lord. But they have sexual/sexy references. What! Since when  has something green in a shell ever been sexy? And torture scenes? Again we are talking about TOYS here, folks, those things we work hard to buy for our kids because they have to have it.

Hollywood has done it again, taken something so innocent, and turning it into something so corrupt, that it exposes our children to things, even if for a brief moment, that will plant a seed that can slowly destroy their innocence. I drove right by the big red box, hand picked the DVD and protected my kids one more Friday night.

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