Posts

Thursday; May 23

I was visiting with a couple of friends that other day when the discussion turned to dealing with an interesting Old Testament passage.  Proverbs 26:4-5 notes, “Do not answer a fool according to his folly, or you will also be like him.  Answer a fool as his folly deserves, that he not be wise in his own eyes.”.  A superficial reading of this passage may prompt us to want to ask Solomon, “What should we do with fools – challenge them or not?”.   Over the last couple of days I have pondered this quote it and it has given me an interesting thought – maybe this issue isn’t the foolishness of the person, rather in how we deal with them.  Yes, we should address folly and foolishness, but we must do it in a proper way.  In essence, we shouldn’t be foolish in addressing fools.  I don’t know about you, but there have been too many occasions when I have allowed myself to get sucked into insignificant discussions about things that weren’t worth my time.  What’s worse, the further I got into them…

Wednesday; May 22

Last November, Polly Crews passed away at the age of 93 years old.  On the surface there isn’t really much newsworthy in this observation – but, it is what lies beneath the story of the Crews family that is remarkable.  Prior to her death Polly was recognized as the oldest living “Gold Star Mother” in Florida.  If you aren’t familiar with this organization – it has one of the toughest initiations – you become qualified for a Gold Star Mother when you lose a child in battle.  Unfortunately, Polly’s initiation was paid on May 22, 1969 when her son, Robert, was killed in Vietnam.
         I have been blessed to know the Crews family most of my life.  They have been special to us throughout the years for a variety of reasons, but there are two that stand out to me:  The first is service.  Bobby’s death In Vietnam was the result of a seed that was planted in the Crews children early in their lives.  They have always been willing to “go the extra mile” in taking care of the people …

Tuesday; May 21

As Jesus prepared His new disciples for their work in the world, He reminded them that just being on “Team Jesus” wasn’t going to be enough for them.  In laying the foundation for His people He warned, “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.” (Matthew 7:21).  Merely claiming to follow Jesus wasn’t going to cut it – they were going to have to be accountable to His standards.  As we look around at the world today, we can see a tendency for some people who claim to have a relationship with Jesus to preach a message that is not in line with the words of the Master.  They call themselves “Christians”, but their message does not mirror The Christ.  Whether it comes from a malicious intent or unintentional error, we must make sure that we do not follow or propagate their misleading message.  Following Jesus previous warning He went on to note, “Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord…

Monday; May 20

The other day I was listening to a friend of mine doing a sermon based on the story of the healing of the blind man in John 9.  Among one of the many points brought out in the lesson was the concept that I may have been looking, but I haven’t been seeing all that I could have been seeing.  When we look around at the world, what do we see?  Basically, we tend to see what we expect to see – what we have trained our eyes to perceive.  For too many of us what that means is that we see the bad, the negative, the troubles and trails.  Yet, what would happen if we began to refocus on what we might be able to see:  the good, the positive, the blessings.  How many incredible things could we have seen if we just would have been looking for something different? Folks if you are anything like me you have probably seen enough bad stuff to last us the rest of our lives.  Think of the joy that we could experience if we just changed what we wanted to see!  Imagine the incredible images and the potenti…

Friday; May 17

I have had the opportunity to attend a few funerals over the past several days.(Well, I guess it is more appropriate to call them “memorials” or “celebrations of life” these days.)As I reflect on these events it has caused me to ponder how I would like to be remembered when I die.Whether we like it or not we will all eventually die and just about every one of us will be the focal point of some type of memorial service.The issue is what theme will be promoted when we pass?Will we be known for doing things our own way?Will we be recalled as the clown of the party – someone who lived fast and loose?Will we be mourned because the world has lost a righteous person who left a trail of goodness wherever we went?The interesting thing about this thought is that it will have less to do with how we died and more to do with how we lived.Sure, there can be tragic circumstances surrounding a death, but the essence of our influence will typically not be found in our manner of death; rather, in our l…

Thursday; May 16

I have been a big fan of Bobby Bowden for a lot of years.Not only was he a good football coach, he also appears to be a good man.Coach Bowden made a name for himself in major college football programs like West Virginia and Florida State and has been a positive influence on a lot of people through the years.Interestingly, his impact wasn’t just on those he coached, he also touched those who had the chance to listen to him as well (and that was a lot of us because he had a lot to say and was very “quotable”). There isn’t enough room for me to list all the classic Bobbyisms, but I would like to share a couple of them.The first one is, “Don’t go to the grave with life unused.”.We have all been given time and talent and it would be a shame to waste either one of them.Let’s be committed to reaching our potential and maximizing our time.The second quote is, “Courage is doing something you need to do that might get you hurt.”.While many people might think this is a lesson for the gridiron, th…

Wednesday; May 15

This is a pretty emotional week for me for two reasons.  First, it is National Police Week, the week set aside to honor the men and women who protect and serve; especially those who have paid the ultimate price and have been killed in the line of duty.  Each year, about 150 police officers from around the United States die – not protecting us from some invading force, but standing in the gap between good and evil in our own backyards.  The second reason this week is emotional for me is because it was this week in 1995 that I first became involved in Law Enforcement.  I began my “public service” career as a police chaplain in Pierre, South Dakota and have been hooked ever since!  One of the things that I remember about my early days comes from Sheriff Kevin Thom.  Kevin was overseeing the South Dakota Law Enforcement Academy in those days and he invited me to do some teaching about the stress of Law Enforcement on officers and their families.  When Kevin was giving me my “marching orde…