13 Jan

A suit for strong personality

Why is it that in nearly every aspect of life strength is a strong suit. We want strong bodies, strong teams, strong buildings, strong countries, strong character, strong leaders and strong resolves yet mention a strong personality and it is often viewed as a weak trait.

We tend to put strong personality into the same category as strong winds, strong breath and strong odor.

Strong personalities are like onions and garlic. A little bit goes a long way. They make other things taste better but by themselves, well, they are just way too strong! In essence, too much of a good thing is bad.

Less of me and more of you is what is needed in the salad bowl and the sandwich shop we call conversations in life.

People are like fruits and vegetables. Together they make beautiful culinary things. By themselves and with too much of any one thing, and your palate grows weary and your taste buds wane.

Who doesn’t like watermelon, avocado, bananas or strawberries? Truth is, there are a lot of folks that not only despise them, they are allergic to them! We sometimes forget that onions and garlic aren’t the only portions of the pie that have limits.

We’ve heard them all. It is too sour, too sweet, too tart, too mild, too coarse, too slimy, too hot, too cold, too bland, and you guessed it, too strong!

It helps knowing when your contribution to the overall dish is needed. Sometimes it’s a dash of this or a dash of that. Rarely is it a lot of any one thing.

Embrace who you are while embracing the other fruits and nuts in the salad bowl! Even cabbage and celery have a place in the kitchen. What is good Italian food without plenty of garlic? Onion burgers have a huge following but not everyone’s tastes are the same, nor should they be.

You be you and let them be them and when it is your time to shine, flip on the switch. Otherwise wait your turn in line and be ready to contribute your unique traits and qualities at the appropriate time.

08 Nov

Wait a minute, update in progress!

Has your life become sluggish? Are you experiencing more frustration than usual? Are things more or less just clunking along? 

Perhaps it’s time for a spiritual software update.

Being still before the Lord is like downloading the latest and greatest iPhone software, it fixes bugs and makes other improvements to our operating systems. 

In order to succeed at an effective download we have to stop, be still and focus on the update.

The same is true for a spiritual software update. When we get still before the Lord he downloads new thoughts and insights certain to refresh our spirit, fix glitches and make other enhancements in our spiritual operating system.

What is the key to a great update? Being still long enough to download the necessary upgrades.

The iPhone requires that the phone be solely focused on the system update. There are no exceptions. The phone is basically inoperable while the update is in progress. 

In order to be filled with our spiritual update we too must be still and completely yielding to the download the Lord is giving. No interruptions or distractions are allowed if our upgrade is to be a success.

Rest assured, if we want the latest and greatest the Lord has to offer, we will be required to slow down, hit pause and be still before the Lord as he downloads all he has to offer in our walk with Jesus.

Knowing your spiritual operating system is up to date makes everything operate and run more smoothly.

What are you waiting for? Maybe it’s time to wait a minute as the update makes progress! 

03 Nov

Don’t miss in the mess

Jacob was on the run and ran right into God!

His life was a mess. Bad choices left him to living on the run.

Nonetheless God met him where he was at and spoke encouragement into his circumstances.

God has 4 things for us as well:

1. Blessing (expect the best)

2. Companionship (he is with us)

3. Protection (there will be danger)

4. Safe return (we will make it)

God’s got this!

“What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.” ‭‭Genesis‬ ‭28:15‬ ‭NLT‬‬

And then verse 16 …

“Then “____________” awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it!” ‭‭Genesis‬ ‭28:16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

YUP! God is at work in all the mess! 

Don’t miss Him in the mess!!!!

02 Nov

The Gift of Friendship

“You can trust us to stick to you through thick and thin — to the bitter end. And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours — closer than you keep it yourself. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are friends, Frodo. We are horribly afraid — but we are coming with you; or following you like hounds.” Merry, Fellowship of the Rings

“It is going to be very dangerous, Sam. It is already dangerous,” warns Frodo. “Most likely neither of us will come back.” Sam doesn’t flinch:”If you don’t come back, sir, then neither I shan’t, that is certain.”

When Frodo and Sam are at the threshold of Mount Doom, near the very end of their quest, they find themselves nearly without strength to carry on. 

They stagger toward their goal. Frodo, weakened by the great burden of carrying the Ring, begins to crawl on his hands.

Sam looked at him and wept in his heart, but no tears came to his dry and stinging eyes. “I said I’d carry him, if it broke my back, he muttered, “and I will”

“Come Mr. Frodo!” he cried. “I can carry you and it as well. So up you get! Come on, Mr. Frodo dear! Sam will give you a ride. Just tell him where to go, and he’ll go.”

Great friendship is a gift born of adversity: it is made possible by the common struggle against the world’s darkness. 

“Certainly I have looked for nonsuch friendship as you have shown. To have found it turns evil to great good.” — Frodo

(Excerpts from A Hobbit, a Wardrobe and a Great War.)

22 Oct

Watch out!

Are you grateful or grumbly?

Do you tend to focus on what is annoying or what is amazing?

Would others describe you as a buzzard or a butterfly? One looks for something rotten while the other is in constant pursuit of something sweet!

There are plenty of problems to fill the day. The priority we give our problems determines the altitude of our attitude.

When we look for the pearl among the pigs, the diamond in the rough and the rose among the thorns, something counter intuitive happens inside of us that helps put problems into perspective. 

An attitude of gratitude helps push back the darkness, pain and suffering that sneaks into our lives. 

Gloom begins to lose its grip on our spirits when we choose to embrace the good that desires to cheer us on. 

When you are tempted to grumble, try to counter the urge by recognizing a few things you are grateful for in your life. 

We often get what we are looking for in life. What we see is what we get. 

What are you looking for? Watch out, you might just get it!

20 Oct

Who am I?

I am laid over at Stephanie and I’s favorite airport. LOVE Field. Get it? 

Anyway, I need to grab lunch before my flight departs. And there it is! Chick-fil-A!!! As usual the line is long but worth it because they are on top of their game.

To move things along, they don’t give you a number they ask for your name. Love it!

So here is how it goes down.

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “How may I serve you?”

ME: “A number one combo with a Coke Zero.”

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “Your name please?”

ME: “I Am Blessed.”

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “I Am Blessed?”

ME: “That’s right. I Am Blessed.”

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “Okay! Me too”

… fast forward as CFA TEAM MEMBER calls out my name once order is ready…..

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “I Am Blessed”

ME: “Can you say that again?”

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “I Am Blessed”

ME: “One more time?”

CFA TEAM MEMBER: “I Am Blessed.”

And now the whole CFA Team with smiles gets in on it: “I Am Blessed!”

Customers and team all smile and look at me.

CFA TEAM MEMBER: (hands me my order and leans in to say with a smile) “Thank you.”

ME: “My pleaser!” (You knew that was coming!!!)

Have fun out there! Be blessed and do your best to make people smile! As for me? I am blessed!

23 Sep

SURE SIGNS YOU NEED COFFEE

1. You brew coffee but failed to use a filter.

2. You brew coffee but fail to place the carafe under the brewer.

3. You try again but repeat one of the above. 

4. The background image in this meme looks blurry.