print

Maybe it’s me just being emotional because I am parting ways with friends that have become like brothers and sisters to me over the past four years… but I’ve been doing a little thinking.  {OH NO!!}

I feel that leaving my heartprint on the world is better than leaving my footprint.  I feel that many people can leave footprints whether they are just passing through or staying a while to cause trouble.  But to leave a heartprint one has to become vulnerable, entangled in relationships, give themselves to others, and embrace their community.

I want to pray for a heart that reaches out-  I want to be willingly inconvenienced.  I believe in Divine appointments.

Every day they pass me by,
I can see it in their eyes;
Empty people filled with care,
Headed who knows where
On they go through private pain,
Living fear to fear.
Laughter hides the silent cry’s,
Only Jesus hears.

People need the Lord.
People need the Lord.
At the end of broken dreams,
He’s the open door.
People need the Lord.
People need the Lord.
When will we realize
People need the Lord.
  -Greg Nelson & Phil McHugh

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extraordinarily ordinary

In our quest for extraordinary, we often overlook the importance of the ordinary.  This thought was implanted in my head months ago after reading a book by David Platt called “Radical.” It just recently came back to the forefront of my mind. When I was a little kid I wanted to be an extraordinary football player and become famous- I wanted to be an extraordinary doctor and find a cure for cancer, and most of all I wanted to be an extraordinary Cowboy and save the “Wild West.”  As a kid it is good to have dreams and want to be “extraordinary.”  Those thoughts CAN transition into wanting to “pursue excellence and bear fruit” as an adult, which is what we are called to do as Christians.  But now being 22 years old (as of Thursday :] ) and a Christian man I’ve had to asses my heart’s desire to become extraordinary.  What’s my motivation?  Has my quest to be extraordinary transitioned into being Christ centered or self-centered?

Elizabeth Elliot talking about Christ’s example points out, “not even dying a martyr’s death is classified as extraordinary when you are following a Savior who died on a cross… Suddenly a martyr’s death seems like normal obedience.”

The goal is not for us as individuals to live extraordinary lives but to join together in communities of faith, denying ourselves, taking up our crosses, and following after Him.  We will need to show one another how to give liberally, go urgently, and live dangerously.  It becomes ordinary to give more when it hurts and love after we’ve been slandered.

It is hard when we find ourselves surrounded by the lure of temporary pleasure and security.  But all of the sudden when we fasten our affections on the One who will never spoil or fade, He will show us that our greatest security is not found in the comforts we can manufacture in this world, but Himself.

“He is no fool to give what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose… You and I have an average of about 70 or 80 years on this earth.  During these years we are bombarded with the temporary.  Make money.  Get stuff.  Be comfortable.  In the middle of it all, we get blinded to the eternal.  But it’s there.  You and I stand on the porch of eternity.  Both of us will soon stand before God to give an account for our stewardship of the time, the resources, the gifts, and ultimately the gospel he has entrusted to us.  When that day comes, I am convinced we will not wish we had given more of ourselves to living the American Dream.  We will not wish we had more money, acquired more stuff, lived more comfortably, taken more vacations, watched more television, pursued greater retirement, or been more successful in the eyes of this world.  Instead we will wish we had given more of ourselves to living for the day when every nation, tribe, people and language will bow around the throne and sing the praises of the Savior who delights in radical obedience and deserves eternal worship.” (David Platt, Radical)

I’m humbled by His example.  “Woe is me for I am a man of unclean lips…”  I find myself wanting to be extraordinarily ordinary.

Sing it to me.

Today I wanted to be a little boy being rocked by my mom while she sang to me.  I’m almost done with my undergrad- A week from today to be exact.  I needed some encouragement and since my momma isn’t around to hold and sing to me, I went to the next best thing.  I had Sarah McMillan sing it to me.  A final speech, 1 paper, 1 test, and 2 final exams away.  Oh how sweet the smell…

Old. Used. Worn.

I love things that have a story- You know, the things that you own that aren’t worth anything to anyone else because they’ve become old, used, and worn.  When you come to think of it, those old, used, and worn things have done exactly what they were intended to do.  They’ve served their purpose and stood the test of time.

That old pair of shoes that you have literally done everything in. They’ve been faithful for many morning runs, afternoon shopping sprees, and evening gardening.  Or my personal favorite- a good book that you’ve recommended to several friends over the years and now boasts bent corners and torn pages.

“Newness is no virtue and oldness is no vice.  Truth and beauty and goodness are not determined by when they exist.  Nothing is inferior for being old, and nothing is valuable for being modern.”  (J.Piper)

To me the true beauty in antiquity is the perseverance behind it.  Paul says in his final letter to Timothy, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful.”  I can picture Timothy holding this letter in his shaking hands, rereading that sentence over and over, tears of joy flowing down his face.  This was a letter from his closest companion and friend.  Paul, was in prison and coming to his final days on earth.  He was reassuring Timothy that everything he had shared with him about Jesus Christ and Him crucified was still the same thing he was preaching even in prison, on death row.  Paul wanted Timothy to know that the gospel they were preaching, was and always would, stand the test of time and not even death could nullify that.  He led by example and encouraged Timothy to persevere and to be faithful to his calling.  He was to become old, used, and worn for the sake of the gospel just as Paul so beautifully had done before him.  When you come to think of it all they were doing was exactly what they were intended or created to do: “Take up their cross and follow Him.”

I am encouraged by their story tonight.  I want to become old, used, and worn.  I want to do exactly what I was created to do.

Drink Deeply


Christ took your cup of grief, your cup of the curse, pressed it to His lips, drank it to its dregs, then filled it with his sweet, pardoning, sympathizing love, and gave it back to you to drink, and to drink forever!
                                           -Octavius Winslow

Drink deeply- Let it trickle to the depths of your soul. …and He said “drink the water I give you and you will thirst no more…”

I’m overwhelmed by Him. He won’t relent.
He is so good, oh so good.

Coloring to Conformity

A kid coloring on a wall is so free to explore creativity.  He uses the wall as His canvas, he sees no limits to the proper use of a wall.  He’s never heard of conformity and rules he must follow; like:
  1. A wall needs to be plain and white
  2. There must only be a few pictures that have similar themes.
  3. Never let a creative design be free to roam outside of a frame.
  4. …fill in your preconceived notions of how things should go…
Sometimes if you watch a kid carefully they reveal our Savior to us all so well.  They teach us in their freest moments to “…offer our bodies as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God- this is our true and proper worship- and to not CONFORM to the patterns of this world…”
Lets be the crayons He uses to color on His walls.  It’s His masterpiece.