The Ties That Bind…

When I was about 7 years old, I remember asking for a big brother. As an only child, there were days when I felt a bit lonely…but most of all, I thought a big brother would be really nice. Some of my friends had one, and there was something about the security that came with it that I craved. Someone to look up to, but also someone who would take care of me. Well, my parents weren’t able to accommodate me, life as a child can be so disappointing at times. :)

Throughout the years it has been fascinating observing family dynamics. I spent a lot of time, and still do, watching how families interact. There are many instances that I don’t understand, but beneath it all, I can see how unique these relationships are. There is a lot of loyalty, but deep down, often there is also envy and a strong sense of competition. It doesn’t seem to matter what age the family members are, the emotions are the same, but the behavior masking the emotions comes out differently. Continue reading

The Junk Drawer

I have a “junk drawer” and if I can be honest, I have quite a few of them. They hide the stuff I don’t know what to do with, and don’t want people to see. Most of the time I can’t find anything I need in them, they just accumulate junk. But if I do find something I need in them, I feel justified in having these drawers full.

There are a few junk drawers in my life as well. Places where I hide my junk, things about me that I don’t others to see. Most of the stuff in those drawers are clutter, but some of them are really things I try to hide. I don’t look through them often, they make me cringe. I am also too lazy to clean them out. It takes too much work, and too much honesty. Continue reading

Passing the Buck

For most of my life I would sit in the pew and listen to pleas for some cause or another. The television shows that I enjoyed watching had long commercial breaks showing hungry children and opportunities for helping someone in need. I would tune it out, change the channel…it made me uncomfortable. It’s not like I could help anyone, I didn’t have any money. And aren’t these commercials and speeches just a money grab for a large organization? It was easy to forget it all and think that someone else will take care of it. I didn’t need to make it my problem.

Now I am on the other side of the equation, seeing first hand the endless opportunities to help. Now I can’t change the channel. And there are days when I wish I could. It still makes me uncomfortable, and I still don’t have the money. Or do I? Don’t I have just enough to help a little? Isn’t that all I need to do? Didn’t the widow in the Bible just give her 10 cents? Jesus isn’t asking us to come up with millions of dollars for a big cause! He just wants an open heart and the willingness to be used. Continue reading

“Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble?”

There is a song going through my head this morning! It feels like an anthem for this coming year. When the ones who believe get together and sing and praise together, the enemy will flee! There is something in the air…can you feel it???


“Did you feel the mountains tremble
Did you hear the oceans roar
When the people rose to sing of
Jesus Christ the risen one

Did you feel the people tremble
Did you hear the singers roar
When the lost began to sing of
Jesus Christ, the saving one

Continue reading

Famine

I’ve been there, and I’ve done that! Shopped for another thing, thinking that I would somehow be able to fill in that hole inside of me. Looking for sales, finding deals, and looking into my overflowing closet and not finding a single thing to wear. Wanting what I saw in the store windows…spending the money…coming home and not really feeling any better.

Watching the news, and seeing people trample each other for “bargains”, has really affected me this year. There is a high likelihood that whatever they are lining up for, or hurting each other for, they already have at home. But this years TV is such a good deal…so what if we have 4 already? Credit cards filling up again? Is the storage unit that we are paying $100 a month for filling up as well? Do we need another one? What do we do with our closets that are full? We can’t fit in any more stuff! And really, giving our clothes to the Salvation Army is good…but is it just because we want more clothes for ourselves? Does it make us feel generous? Does it fill that hole? What if we give to the Salvation Army…and then give the money we would spend on newer clothes to them as well? What a novel idea?? Continue reading

Dependence

Often relationships become lopsided. One needs and expects more than the other, or one is more demanding and eventually the other becomes drained of energy. It is said that relationships are 50/50…but it really should more like 100/100. There aren’t really any other options, but often the numbers are uneven, and one inevitably gives more than the other. Unless it’s acknowledged and worked on, there is one who eventually feels used and tired. There can even be a breakup down the road.

Which side of a relationship are you on? Do you give or take? Does it feel fair?

Do you depend on another person to get you through the day? What happens when that person fails or disappoints you? And what do you do if they aren’t available every time you need them? Do you feel it’s their fault? Is it easy to assign blame on someone else when our needs aren’t met? Continue reading

No Regrets

There was a link going around on facebook this last week. It was about deathbed confessions and the most common regrets people had in their last days. As they say, hindsight is 20/20…and if we are able to learn from the regrets of others, then we can live a fuller life. The trick is to take them seriously, and to really think about them. What can we do to ensure that at the end of our days we know that we lived a life of no regrets. A life fully lived!

Here is the list of 5 regrets:

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me. (This was the most common regret of all)

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier. Continue reading

The Big Picture

I don’t know how many of you have read, or seen, “The Pillars of the Earth”. It is quite a popular book, written by Ken Follett. It sat on my bookshelf for years, and for some reason I didn’t read it…so I watched the TV movie instead. Not my usual behavior…I tend to be the kind of person who prefers the book…oh well, I succumbed.

The idea of this blog is the “big picture”…and it ties, somehow, the book and the message I heard spoken at our Missionary Fellowship today. The central theme of both was about a cathedral…and the people involved in the process. Continue reading

One and Only?

I am a huge fan of Costco and Sam’s Club! Buying in bulk! What a marvelous concept! If one of something is good, then ten of the same thing is fantastic! haha! Thinking in terms of “bulk” is quite common. If one shirt fits nicely, I will buy it in every color. Have to have spare for a rainy day, or if the stores run out of our favorite brand.

Do you think that God thinks in bulk? Does He look at us and say, “it is only successful if tens or hundreds get saved at once!” We love crusades and large events. Seeing hundreds go forward must make the angels sing. Right? Continue reading

Purpose?

We are inundated with speeches and articles, encouraging us to find our purpose in life. Our destiny. There are countless books, and daily devotionals…the self-help section at the bookstore is quite large. It’s amazing how many of these books make it into the bestseller lists. I love reading them myself. I try the “steps”, and last a few days before something derails me, and then I forget what I was doing. Awhile later I will find the book on my shelf, and have a hard time remembering what it was that I learned…and did it actually do me any good? Continue reading