I started this morning’s post wrestling with the budget and debt crisis in our country, and the general frustration most of us feel with a political system that seems more broken each day. But then I was reminded of the words of the apostle Paul, words that have often given me a new focus and a fresh attitude for living as a Christian in the world. Quoting Philippians 4:8-9:
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”
|My friend, Kayla|
Freed of those dark shadows, my mind went to more pleasant scenes and encouraging thoughts. First there was Kayla Forry.
Not quite two years ago Kayla’s mom gave birth to her in the 26th week of pregnancy. Kayla spent a long time in the hospital. Her first two winters she had to be guarded carefully against the illnesses and infections public settings bring. But this Saturday I went to a part at her parent’s farm and watched this lively, life-filled little girl at play like all other children. Her parents, Dwight and Kelly, call he a miracle baby, and so she is. But it is precisely the miracles of God that make us glad that we are not alone in the universe and that God is not confined to the natural order of things.
|Hailey Brae Sarver|
Then my thoughts went to another child, a newborn named Hailey Brae Sarver. Her parents Brook and Sarah are church planters from Indiana who committed ten years of their life (for a start) to help establish a shining witness for Jesus Christ in Thailand. Yet they haven’t put their life on hold. Because theirs is a calling, not a temporary passion, they have chosen to start their family where they intend to invest their lives. I have enjoyed all the Facebook posts about the pregnancy and birth, Now I look forward to watching them (from afar) raise this child of promise for their lives.
|Dianne tells a story that helps change lives|
Then there’s my lovely wife Dianne, one of my congregation’s Master Teachers. She gave a week of her summer to go to the Navajo Reservation to teach the children about Jesus. When given a God story to tell, she invests herself with such passion and creativity that she makes things come alive, capturing people’s imaginations and opening their minds. A whole lot of children in Tsaile AZ are going to remember an incredible God because they met an incredible teacher.
Maybe our lives would be a little brighter if today we took our eyes off Washington and pushed the economy out of our minds and let our eyes be wide open to the mercies of God. I encourage you to start this Monday this way. It may make all the difference in how you live in the week to come.