Wow – Spring Break has been fun! We’ve been to the Marquee theater, to play laser tag, and the best of all was the picnic at Shy Pond! If you weren’t there, you sure missed out! Anyway, it’s been fun hanging out with you guys!
Today a bunch of old friends came by on their way to the beach. It was tons of fun catching up with them and seeing what God has been doing with them all. It’s such a cool thing to know that God is always at work – all over the place. I get so caught up in my own life that I sometimes forget to look around and notice that life is not about me! It’s about God! When I get caught up in my own stuff, I sometimes remember what a friend of mine (Dustan) once said – "Don’t sweat it! It’s just life!" Most people think that life is a BIG deal, but Dustan’s idea is really probably more true – life is pretty short compared to the eternity that we have before us! I think he’s right alot of the time – It’s ok to stress about "eternal" things, but these "life" things are not worth worrying over.
Anyway, I hope you have a great Spring Break too.
PS – I’m not saying that life isn’t important – just that there are more important things.
Here’s a Franciscan Benediction (from St. Francis) that I think is cool. I found it on a Charlie Hall CD.
“May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart. May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace. May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy. And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.”
Wow – I love it! Cool stuff! Yes God I pray that for all the Christians I know and for me too!
What you are is God’s gift to you. What you become is your gift to God.
I’m not sure where this even comes from, but it’s pretty cool stuff huh? God has given us everything – our spiritual gifts, our families, our money, even life itself. What we do with those things is how we can honor Him and give back to Him.
I guess Justin’s a cow so I decided to join in on the fun – no – here’s an article I found that really spoke to me about how I treat Miranda – well, how I treat most other people too. I get way too interested in accomplishing my task and don’t pay enough attention to the people I’m with. Jesus always focused on people. Women and even chimps are better at this than I am. (By the way Baby, I’m sorry for the times I’ve paid too much attention to getting stuff done, when I should have just wanted “to be with you.”)
Here’s the article:
Men, Women, Chimps, and Scientists by Dave Brisbin
Women and their men. I see them all the time. Airport terminals are a good place to watch. The roles, the emotions, the language is universal.
I see a young couple from the moving sidewalk coming toward me hand in hand. One of them has just arrived. I can’t tell which; the small case he carries is non-descript. They talk. She is smiling. Looks up at his eyes, back forward again. Up. Back. So much is said with her eyes. I can only imagine. I watch him. He is talking, but looks forward; she alternately at him and back ahead. What I see in her eyes he hasn’t seen as long as I watch.
They pass, and I watch their backs. I see her profile tilted up to his face, but only the back of his head—minding the tiller. I’ve seen this before. Why is it so much easier for women to know where to look? Where to keep their eyes? Moving through their lives with their eyes fastened to the sides, on the eyes of those who travel with them—their men more intent on destination, the negotiation of the journey. And how do women keep that look in their eyes as they search up into the profiles of their men?
Last Wednesday night we got a video of scientists trying to teach human language to apes and dolphins . . . . . a segment stays in my mind. One man, a very famous scientist, spent three years raising an infant chimp and trying to teach him sign language. He named the chimp Nim. Nim did very well. Learned several hundred signs. But funding ran out, the project was disbanded, and Nim went to a zoo or something like it. After reviewing hundreds of video tapes of his sessions with Nim, the scientist concluded that Nim was only imitating his teachers and hadn’t really learned anything. Put a big dent in the chimp-teaching business for awhile.
Several years later the scientist went to see Nim. Hadn’t seen him since funding ran out on the project. In clinical voice over, he wondered if Nim would remember him. The video camera caught Nim walking with a trainer just as he caught sight of the scientist. Immediately chimp screeches filled the TV speaker at the rate of about three per second as Nim threw up his arms and sprinted, as well as chimps can in their loping way, for the scientist who got down on his haunches and braced for impact.
Nim leapt into the scientist’s lap and threw his arms around his neck. Chimp arms being what they are, they almost went around twice. All this time and for as long as the camera held on Nim and the scientist, chimp screeches never stopped or even slowed down, chimp teeth big and bright as the scene cut.
And I kept hearing those screeches, and I laughed and smiled and my eyes stung a little all at the same time because the scientist thought that Nim learned nothing, and Nim thought that the scientist was his father, or brother at least. Because the scientist was looking ahead at where he was going. Nim was looking at him.
I’d rather be a chimp than a scientist.
I’d rather be a young woman watching her man’s profile than a young man watching the road.
How weird is that? We get so caught up in getting everything done and even a monkey knows the most important thing in life is our relationships. I wonder how many times I’ve broken God’s heart by worrying about “getting things done” when he just wants me to “be with Him?” I wonder how many times I’ve done that to Miranda?
Why are Christians making such a big deal about the use of “Happy Holidays” as opposed to “Merry Christmas!” I guess I understand the concern about taking Christ out of the season, but is that really possible? To those of us who are Christians, it’s certainly not possible and to the rest of the world, well, how can they celebrate the birth of a Savior they don’t know?
I guess I just feel like if you’re gonna be upset about something, why not worry about the guy you work with who doesn’t know Christ? It seems like a much more worthy concern to me.
This whole thing just seems like something that’s “not worth the fight” to me – I’m not apathetic to the gospel, but rather I am passionate about it, and want the opportunity to communicate Christ to others without more hurdles to jump than are neccessary. These kinds of fights just throw up more walls between people and Christ. It just seems to me that our efforts should be spent serving and sharing Christ with individuals, rather than fighting over words on some billboard. Maybe even the perceptions that the world has of Christians could actually be changed by people truly loving and serving the world???
By the way, if you want to complain about the words in a phrase – Mark O from Youth Specialties says this too – is “Merry Christmas” really the best thing we can wish people during this season? “Merriment” (is that a word?) certainly isn’t at the top of my list. What about wishing them a “Peaceful Christmas” or an “Ever-Aware Christmas?” Wouldn’t it be better if people experienced the “peace that passes understanding” during such a hectic time or if they were somehow able to be “ever aware of Jesus’ presence?”
I dunno – just some random thoughts I’ve been having lately.