Archive for June, 2011

Sweat the Small Stuff!

Posted in Uncategorized on June 26, 2011 by xybatt

We are teaching the kids to snorkel this summer. Not swim with a mask in the pool but in the bay and gulf with mask, fins and snorkel. it’s alot of fun…and work. Had to buy swim vests (can’t let em drown), mask and fins, snorkels, a dive flag. So, off we went to Ft. Pickens to see what we could see. It was a -HOT- Saturday afternoon and the water felt wonderful. And away we splashed…two feet deep and a sand bottom. They had a blast! Except when the straps to the mask pulled hair or salt water got in their eyes. Saw several spectacular (TIC) hermit crabs and … a fish! Found a few shells. All in all, a good experience.

I remember when I wouldn’t have enjoyed such a limited water experience. Some of you remember that before Hurricane Andrew I dove or snorkeled everyday. In clear water, In Miami, the Keys, Caymans, Bahamas….Saw Sharks, barracudas, moray eels, turtles, lobster by the dozens….even a whale! I spearfished with the legendary Snyders…dove the wrecks…incredible.

God has a way of softening the heart. He has changed what is important to me.  Time with loved ones. Fellowship with believers. Celebrating the good times and mourning the bad. It is an interesting life!

Here’s what God has taught me through time and space:

* Yes, I paid too much to see the Stones, Springsteen, Journey and too many others. Mick hasn’t yet contacted me and encouraged me to have a great day! Lately, I enjoy the music of friends: Fenton Irie, Ascension Day, Southern Gentlemen, L’Angelus, Holly Shelton! Great music! More importantly, great people.

*It’s better to find shells in two feet of water than to have the adventure of a lifetime alone…or with bad company.

* My faith is in a Saviour, not a system! The systems are discriminatory and impersonal. To quote the Bell system “reach out and touch someone!”

* Churches are still catering to married couples and marriages are ending too often. Something is wrong! Sharing the good news is a one on one effort and should be done without prejudice or hesitation.

* God hasn’t given up on me yet! Therefore, I will not give up on others!

* Some things are right! Some things are wrong! Some things are irrelevent!

Remember to check the upcoming events for retreats, workshops and fellowship opportunity!

eace!

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Crabs in a bucket! Do we work to succeed or hold one another down?

Posted in Uncategorized on June 12, 2011 by xybatt

Great things are happening everyday! We live in a free country and are free to choose to worship as we choose. We can travel! We can chill! We can serve others! We get the blessing of “getting” to serve a risen Saviour! It fires me up! Motivates me! Makes me leave my comfort zone! I see the top of the bucket! Sunshine! And if I can just get out I’ll be free! And I start climbing…..up….up….and then SOMEBODY has to grab my leg! See, they are in the bucket too and will hang onto you until you die. One crab can climb out of almost any bucket. 10 crabs will hold one another down. How? One crab will complain that they don’t like the event that is planned for the group (it doesn’t matter if it’s singles, couples, families….whatever) and one crab will complain! It’s not what I like…I’m not comfortable with it…Or they will paly the SUPERbeliever card! It’s not what a good believer would do….Bluegrass concert (worldly)….Blue Angels on the beach (fear of seeing someone immodest)….devotional beware- you may say the wrong thing…. Singing (I don’t like that song…music…rendition). Dinner out? No money….picky eater….

It happens to all of us! A good day at school (ZAP! coulda made a 4.0). A productive day at work (the office complains about the paperwork or your wife/mother/girlfriend/children complain that you don’t don’t do enough around the house). A stranger smiles and brightens your day (Boom! Someone provides false motives).

REMEMBER!  GOD is smiling down on you everyday! HE loves you! Your family and friends may be like crabs and drag you down. Others will compete with you and try to get out of the bucket at your expense. There is no shortage of crabs. Get out of that bucket NOW or you never will.

Does the Bible have advice on dealing with crabs? Try this! Romans 12:1 “offer your body as a living sacrifice”,  Romans 13:8 “let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another”. Tell those grumbly crabs who think they are the SOOPER believers, “Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgement on disputable matters” and 14:22 “Whatever you believe about these things, keep between yourself and GOD…” Enough? No? How about “Accept one another as Christ accepted you to bring praise to GOD,” Romans 15:7.

Whatver your belief system is and where you are in your journey, you are not in control of this earth. The only person you can control (to a limited amt.) is yourself. Others can be encouraged or discouraged. Be a person that others are happy to see coming! Build up, praise, bless the day of others. Don’t worry about things you can’t control anyway.

A message for the crabs…………..leg go of my leg! I’m outta here!

Life experiences-Can I catch a ride?

Posted in Uncategorized on June 5, 2011 by xybatt

 

Hey There!

Can you imagine driving down the road and seeing Bono, the lead singer from U2, on the side of the road, thumb stuck out, trying to hitch a ride?  Would you stop and pick him up?

Well, that’s exactly what happened to Gilbert Brule this past Tuesday.  He’s the center for the Edmonton Oilers Hockey Team and as he and his girlfriend were driving their German Shepherd to the park they passed Bono on the road who was trying to catch a ride.

Gilbert’s girlfriend, Kelsey, who was behind the wheel, found it hard to believe the 51-year-old rock star would be hitchhiking. “I didn’t want to stop, but they waved and [Gilbert] yelled ‘that’s Bono’. “I didn’t believe him so I kept driving.”

After convincing her to turn around, the couple found the famous front man and his assistant waiting patiently by the roadside. After hopping in, Bono, sat in the back beside the couple’s dog, and told them they had gone for a walk only for it to start raining. “We go to walk our dog and Bono ends up in our car,” Brule said of the bizarre episode.

 

Pretty cool experience, right?  But it got me thinking.  If I was driving down the road, would I have even paid attention to the person on the side of the road, let alone have recognized Bono and stopped?  It’s easy to get so focused on what we are doing and where we want to go that we can miss out on experiencing the life that is happening around us.
But what if, instead of Bono on the side of the road, it was Jesus?  Would I stop for him?  Would I even recognize Him?  Or would I fly on by caught up in my agenda, worries and deadlines?

And yet, everyday, that’s what we do.  Obviously He’s not there physically, but He promises to be with us spiritually.  Some of His last words to us were, “And surely, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20)

So what would it look like if we lived each day as though Jesus was in the back seat of our car, with us in our office cubicle, or just hanging out in our living room or kitchen?  Would it change us?  Would it make a difference in the way we interact with one another?  Would our words and actions be different?  My guess is it would.  I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure it would change me.  So how about it?  Why don’t you spend the next couple of days reminding yourself of the presence of Jesus and see the positive difference it can make.

And while you are at it. I’m pretty sure He’s planning on being in church with us this Sunday and that He’d love to spend the morning with you there in worship.  In fact, we are going to take a look at the question, “Who is this Jesus, anyway?” and it’s a great way to get to know Him even better.

So, plan now to be there with your family and bring a few friends and neighbors with you, because after all, wouldn’t their lives be better getting to know Him too?  So, slow down a little and look around you.  That hitchhiker on the side of the road might just be Bono.  Better yet, it could be Jesus!

 

 

Loving the journey with you,