Getting Real About Life, about Love, and about God

Friday, October 29, 2010

Looking Out

"If any one wants to come after me they must deny themselves, take up there cross, and follow me." - Jesus



We are called to look outside our own little world and to see the bigger picture and better plan that God has for our lives and the world around us. We are not called to a population of one but into the family of God.

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Inside Out

I woke up this morning with this song in my head and I kept singing it all day long. It has a great message and it is a powerful prayer for us to pray. God's desire is to change us. He is not concerned with outward appearance. It is not about what we wear or what we look like. It is about our hearts. We can play dress up. We can try to wear the right cloths and look like good Christian and do what Christians are suppose to do, but what matters is that we have hearts like his. When we are not change from the inside we are not changed and we only fool ourselves. Surrendering our lives to Christ is about giving him control of our heart and our soul so that we are changed form the inside out.



Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Friday, October 22, 2010

TGIF

Thank you Lord!
Thank you Lord!
I just want to thank you Lord!

This week at Dockery we are going to begin a month long focus on living lives that are a response to God's grace, gratitude and generosity. It is not a phrase or word that is original to me, but we are going to talk about "Thanksliving." What is the response that we should have to the love and grace of God? How do I as a follower of Jesus reflect the generosity of God in my life? How do I live in such a way that I give thanks to God not just one day a year but every moment of my live? This is Thanksliving.

Thanksliving is not a first act but a second act. What I mean by this is that God always acts first and we respond, as a second act, to what God has done. Our lives, what we do and how we live them, are a response to God giving us life. A response to God's grace. A response to God generosity. Thank God it everyday! This day is God's gift to us. Will we live it with grace, gratitude and generosity?

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mountain Get Out of The Way

What is your mountain?
We all come up against mountains in life. We experience things that seem too big to climb. We experience stuff that we feel we cant get over. We come to a place where the obstacle in front of us just seems way to big to handle, climb, or get around. That is a mountain of life. Sometimes these mountains are decisions we must make. Sometimes these mountains are circumstances that we have to get through. Sometimes the mountain is called grief. Sometimes the mountain is called fear. The mountains of life have many names and I am sure you know what your mountains name is. Here is the good news.

As I run it seems whenever I am on a long steep hill I always here the words to a praise song running through my mind, it is the same song, same lyrics every time I am running up those hills. In my mind I hear the words, "I will lift my eyes to the maker of the mountains I can't climb." Then I am reminded of the words of Jesus, "If you have faith the size of a mustard seed you can say to the mountain, 'Mountain get out of my way!'."

Maybe today you are standing in front of one of those mountains of life. I want to encourage you to look to God for the strength. I want to remind you of the promise of Jesus. Tell the mountain to get out of your way. Don't try to climb that mountain on you own. You are not alone. Trust God.

Love today.

In Christ love and mine,
Doug

Friday, October 15, 2010

Thank God it's Friday!

This week I can't help but give God thanks for the rescue of the 33 miners in Chile. I, like many of you, watched as one miner after another was lifted from the darkness into the light. I had tears each time they were reunited with their loved ones. I watched and was grateful, thankful and in awe of what can happen when the world comes together to work for a common purpose of good. I know that the days ahead will be difficult for the men who went through this experience. I continue to pray for them and their families and I know that the God who was with them and sustained and protected them throughout their time buried underground is with them in the light of day. He is with us all. He is with us in the darkness calling us into the light. He is with us through our difficulties and he is there to rescue us and to bring us into His light. He is with us on the mountaintops and he is with us in the valleys. He never leaves us or forsakes us.

God is good all the time and all the time God is good. Thank you God for desiring that none of us should be trapped in darkness and for rescuing us, through Christ death on a cross, so that we could walk in the light.

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Time Flies

You have probably heard it said, "Time flies when you are having fun." The truth is that time just flies. It doesn't matter if you are having fun or not. It seems like just yesterday my 12 year old was born. My baby is already over 2. Time flies.

If we are not careful and conscious and make the most of everyday, days become weeks, weeks become months and months become years. Time flies. All week I have been intending on making a post and here it is Thursday and I have yet to make a weekday post for my blog. Monday became Tuesday, Tuesday became Wednesday, Wednesday became Thursday. Even though I had intentions of doing it time got away from me.

This just illustrates for me how easy it is for us to let things slip away. Even things that we want to and intend to do. I think this is why we see people disappear from the church. Their intention is not to leave the church. They miss. They intend to return. But, time flies. What was one week becomes two and then three and then the next thing they know it has been months or years. In their minds they every intention of getting back connected to their faith community and their relationship with God but time flies. This happens with spiritual disciplines as well, we have every good intention but if we are not careful time will fly and get away from us.

Not doing something can also become a habit. They say it takes 21 -30 days to make a habit. If we don't do something for that long it becomes a habit that we don't do it. Time flies.

Now, I am not making or giving you and me an excuse this is a caution or a warning. A warning about putting things off till tomorrow. A caution about letting things slip away. We have to be intentional or it could have some very unwanted unintentional consequences.

Do that thing today that you have been intending to do for some time. Stop putting off your relationship with God.

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Friday, October 8, 2010

Generosity

Generosity is a characteristic of God. Grace is extravagantly generous. Unearned, undeserved, unmerited, but given anyway. God is generous giving all to all.
Love moves us to extravagance in our giving. We give because that is what the love of Jesus does. We give generously of our hearts, our lives, our time and our talents because love compels us. Someone once said we can give without loving, but we can't love without giving. We can measure our love for God and our love for others by our willingness to give. Not by the amount of the gift, but by the heart of the giver.
What does our willingness to give say about our love today?
Love generously today.

In Christ love and mine,
Doug

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Choices

We live in a world full of choices. In the United States, we are given multiple option to just about everything everyday. We often take our ability to have choices for granted.

As I was thinking about the choices that we face everyday and how we have to choose God and to live for God everyday, I was drawn to an interesting contradiction that I have when it comes to choice.

First, I love the ability to choice. Free will rocks. I am grateful and thankful for my free will and my ability to choice. I value that I can choose and I live in a part of the world that affords me may option to choose from. I love that I get to choose and that I get to do that for myself. I think that we are probably all in agreement with this. We love that we have choices. In fact it is hard for us when it seems we have no choice in a matter.

Here is the interesting contradiction. At times, I am crippled by choice. At times I am just overwhelmed by the options. Fear of making the wrong choice rears its ugly head and I just do not want to choice. I struggle with making choices and to not make a choice is still a choice. I feel it would be easier if somebody else just made the choice for me.

It is a strange contradiction isn't it? We love choice and we are crippled because we have to choice. We value our free will and will fight for our freedom to choose yet we are afraid to make a choice.

The good news is that God knows us contradictions and all. And He loves us. The choice that is most important, each and everyday, is the choice to love him in return. Everyday.

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

Friday, October 1, 2010

Live Today

Yesterday is over. You can't live in yesterday. Tomorrow is yet to come. You can't live in tomorrow.

Worry and regret are ways that we attempt to live in impossible places. Today is the day that we have to live. Today is the only day that we can live. Worry and regret rob us of actually living. Our chance to do the things we want to do and to love as we know we should love is right now. This present moment is God's gift to you (this is why it is called present) is a moment for you to live-- not to spend trying to relive the past or worry about the future. Live today.

Make the most of the present that God has given you today. Don't waste it worrying. Don't waste it regretting. Stop trying to live in the impossible. Live today. It is the only day you have to do it. Thanks be to God. This is the day the Lord has made let us rejoice and be glad in it!

Love today.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug