"Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words." - St. Francis of Assisi

Friday, December 31, 2004

Busyness Does Not Equal Godliness

New Year's Eve......Looking back, looking forward.....A time to start anew....blah, blah, blah. Not being one to make resolutions in the past, I don't feel the inclination to do so tonight. Actually, I'm having a great New Year's Eve, sitting at home with just Murphy (my terrier) as company, washing clothes and enjoying the solitude of the house and the calming of my spirit as I instinctively look back at 2004.

Why do so many people (or at least I do) wear themselves out trying to be "all things to all people". We serve in so many areas at our churches, we have secular jobs to do which pay the bills most of the time, some folks have families and/or children to raise, in my case I am working on a graduate degree which takes up more time, and on and on and on. I hate to tell someone 'no' because I feel like I'm letting God down somehow to not be that "all things" person. Do I think that they will not like me any more because I say "Sorry, I can't do that" or that God will revoke my spiritual gifts license because I want to spend a night at home instead of being out and about? So, I will put on my 'all things to all people" t-shirt and gallop off on my spiritual high horse to keep everyone happy and joyful.

Is it only me? Are there others of you out there that have the "All Things" club T-shirt and membership ring? As for me, I am realizing that I can't be all things to all people if I have neglected my self and my own time with God. I have to grow in order to help others to grow. Sounds easy in theory, but it's quite tough to put into practice.

As I started out saying, I am not one to make resolutions, but I do try to make lifestyle changes. This year, I am going to try to please God by doing what He wants me to do and by being what He wants me to be. Same thing I said this time last year, and I did make some progress, but I will do more in the coming year. There are other avenues and paths for me to explore in His plan for my life and I am not content to travel the same paths as 2004. I will not be content to just settle for the status quo of my spiritual quest in 2004, but to continue in drawing closer to the personal God who has carried me safe for all these years, the bumpy ones as well as the smooth ones. I firmly believe with great excitement and anticipation, that the same God who led Moses and Abraham, who inspired Paul and Peter will be walking by my side tomorrow morning as I step outside into 2005. Wow! Ain't that cool??

"In My Life, Lord, Be Glorified Today"

Be God's,

Sunday, December 26, 2004

The Still Small Voice Sometimes Needs to Be a Bit Louder

"If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him." (James 1:5)

Flip a coin, rock/paper/scissors, one potato two potato, drawing straws, list making.......all these are the ways we make decisions. Somehow in my rather odd walk with God, I tend to go with one of the above methods before I do what the scripture tells me to do which is to just ask God (see verse above). Somehow there seems to be more comfort for me in making a list of the good results and the bad results of a decision than in asking my heavenly Father (who won't give me a rock if I ask for bread...Matthew 7:9) for His guidance.

There may be decisions coming my way in the next few months and I can already feel the beginnings of God's stirring in my heart. How do I know this? Because I feel the discomfort or quickening of my soul needing to be still and listen to God. My normal nature is one to rush ahead and try to figure out God's deal and then make it fit what I want to do. Do you ever do that? If not....don't try it 'cause it'll just make this a mess until you get straightened out. Do what the scriptures say - Be still, ask God, listen for God, be patient and wait on Him.

Folks, it ain't easy. If you've dealt with find God's path for your life, you know that the answers are not easily found nor are they easily followed. The decisions may require strength, courage and always requires Faith. I can't promise you that you will always know what God has laid out for you. I've certainly missed the mark a few times (usually because of pride, distance from God, or that voice just wasn't loud enough to penetrate my loud world). But, I can certainly promise you that if you pray for God's direction and wait on Him that He Will Lead You! And I can guarantee that when you make the decision that God is leading you toward, that a marvelous wonderful peace will fill you from head to toes and you'll have a contentment like never before. It might be a new job, a new church, a new ministry, a new relationship, making a stronger stand for God in your home or daily life, learning to be more financially mature, whatever. Just trust Him!

As I started off saying, I am beginning to feel some stirrings so I am going to try to follow my own advice (for once), but more importantly try to follow God's advice. For those who may read this, pray for me and what God is planning for me in the coming days and months. I will certainly appreciate it.

Be God's,

Christmas Reflections

Merry Christmas, all! For those that know me fairly well, know that I have not really been into the whole Christmas scene the past couple of years. Not that I've had a crisis of faith at all, but just haven't done the whole decorating bit. Somehow my friends and family think it some form of heresy to not have a tree in the house for the whole month of December.

This week has made me think about starting back up with all that for next year. We had some very inspiring church services, I've been able to calm my busy life down a little and enjoy being home, family and friends have been a great source of Christmas joy and fun, plus....I just kinda miss the whole garland, bows and lights scene in the house.

Today was spent with family and this evening I was with some friends. We had lot of laughter and good food and snacks. But, throughout the whole day, I kept realizing how much God has blessed me with a close family and more friends than I deserve. He is the source of all love and friendship and has provided a close network of friends that I know I can turn to in times of need and times of fun. I thank Him for all He has given to me.

As we set aside December 25 to celebrate the birth of Jesus, let us also celebrate all that we have because of His birth. Because of God's Love, I have an abundant life.....not with possessions or money, but with the knowledge that He is taking care of me and is providing for my needs. Because of God's Love, we should have the desire to share this Love with those around us. In a couple days, I'll be heading to the Georgia Youth Evangelism Conference with a group of teenagers. Those two days each year are always a great impetus to simply share the Word. Not by big words and theological references, but simply by "God Loves You".

I hope you all had a great day and are looking forward to a great 2005 in service to our Lord.

Be God's,

Thursday, December 23, 2004

I Broke One of My Rules Today

"Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it." (Hebrews 13:2)

Tsk, Tsk, Tsk....shame on me. I broke one of my cardinal rules today and the scary part is that I don't even feel guilty about it. You see, I have worked in downtown Atlanta for quite a few years and it is almost impossible to leave any building without being approached by one of the "urban dwellers" (i.e., homeless, drifters, beggars, etc). Well, in my most humanistic mind I try to avoid these people at all costs using one or more of the below methods:

1) avoid eye contact

2) cross to the other side of the sidewalk or street

3) talk to any other human being about the weather or something until you get past them

4) put Ipod headhones in my ears so I can avoid hearing anything

5) pretend to not speak English

As a side note, our Bible Study this quarter at church has been on angels and as another coincidence, the above scripture was part of a study this past week for one of my school classes. I think that God was just setting me up to teach me a lesson....and was probably quite amused by it.

Now, back to today. I was leaving for the day and a man approached me (no ipod available, in a hallway with no escape) and asked me the time. I gave it to him and then he asked me if I had any friends of his particular ethnic background. I answered 'yes' (while continuing to walk) and he said his car had been towed and he needed transit fare to the impound lot for he and his wife. He actually gave me the correct dollar and cent amount. In that split second, my mind flashed back to my Sunday School and the purposes and ways of angels and the verse in Hebrews slammed into my brain like a train. Without a second thought, I pulled out my wallet and handed the guy what he asked for, plus a few extra dollars since I didn't have the correct change (go figure.....that's probably when God chuckled). And, most amazing of all, the man thanked me in God's name and I left the building whistling Christmas carols.

For at least this one time, I listened to my heart (meaning God) and not my head (meaning my pride and selfishness). And for this one time, I was blessed probably more than the man to whom I gave the money. Did he really use it for getting to his car? I don't know. Did he use it to buy a burger, beer or some type of drugs? I don't know. But, I do know that I gave him the money with God's purpose in mind, so in some way He will be glorified.

I'm a better person tonight. I still have my Ipod close at hand and still know enough phrases in Spanish, French and Jimmy-ese, to possibly continue to use, but I do know that I will be more receptive to the language of God in the coming days.

As it is written, "There, but for the grace of God, go I."

Be God's,


Wednesday, December 22, 2004


Hey there and welcome to my blog. I'll be posting about my journey as a single Christian guy....the things I've learned along the way and certainly the mistakes I've made. God and I have had some fun and laughs along the way and I certainly know that He has a sense of humor after some of the messes which I have gotten into. So, I have learned that we gotta learn to laugh and know that God is laughing with us (but, hopefully, never at us/me)

Then, I'll be writing as often as possible to hopefully serve as a daily cleansing agent for me, a daily 'thank you' to God, and maybe some interest and help for someone else. Please always feel free to comment.

Be God's,