Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from December, 2011

A Dog's Life. Not So Bad After All

This, from Reader's Digest: There are numerous studies that attest to the stress-relieving benefits of pets. In one analysis researchers evaluated the heart health of 240 couples, half of whom owned a pet. Those couples with pets had significantly lower heart rates and blood pressure levels when exposed to stressors than the couples who did not have pets. In fact, the pets worked even better at buffering stress than the spouses did. I have to admit, I didn't see this coming. I do think, however, that this is more about dogs than cats. I can't imagine a cat that didn't raise tension/blood pressure.

3 Things You Can Do to Exhale Every Night

Exhaling is an important part of breathing. It's pretty necessary to expel air from your lungs before you inhale oxygen. Breathing (exhale/inhale) is one of life's rhythms that is not often considered, but is crucially necessary. I've been thinking about the rhythms of life and how we might apply the same principles to our spiritual life. Just as exhaling and inhaling is necessary to sustain life, I wonder if we might not better sustain our own days if we took the time to exhale every night and inhale every morning. Here are some thoughts I have on exhaling: 1. Breath out the deadly toxins. Every day we are confronted with the reality of sin. Whether it be our own mistakes, the hurt of relationships, persecution by enemies, or just the consequences of a fallen world; by the time we close our day, our lives are full of deadly toxins. We need to exhale by breathing those out to our Father. Don't take your pain out on your wife or children or friends. Don&#

Thankful for the Heart of Calvary

One thing I would like to do better is to end my days being thankful. So tonight, I want to give thanks for the heart of my brothers and sisters at Calvary. It is a blessing to be able to witness so many of my friends who are truly developing the heart of Jesus. Over the past few years we have seen many wealthy and "important" people walk away from our church, but God has graciously sent people to replace them who may not be blessed financially, but who exhibit a rich love in their relationships with each other and a deep compassion for the world around them. After all, when he saw the widow give her two mites at the temple, Jesus reminded his followers that it was not the size of the offering that mattered, but rather it is the heart of the giver. Over the past few days I have a great opportunity to repeatedly see people exhibiting the heart of a joyful giver. Today, we had people coming to our building all day (as late as 8pm tonight) to pick up gifts for delivery to child

Please Pray for a Dear Friend and a Great Man

‎ Patrick McGoldrick is perhaps the person who has most influenced me in church ministry. He is someone I deeply respect and love, and from whom I have learned a great deal. I learned more from him in a six month internship than I did in four years of college. Please pray for him, Dena Stevens McGoldrick , and their children Paige and Parker. Patrick posted this yesterday: After a few months of st range symptoms, many doctor’s visits and tests, I need to share with you that I have recently been diagnosed with ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The doctors are 100% convinced that this is what I have. There is no cure for ALS. ALS is a serious neurological disease that causes muscle weakness and eventually leads to complete deterioration. The speed and path varies from person to person, but the average life expectancy is two years. Obviously, this is not what I had planned, nor what I would have ever dreamed would happen to me. But there is another side to the story. God is sovereign and

Control the Thing You Can Control

This morning I was reading in Psalm 119. I noticed across the page, I had scribbled some notes a while back so I looked to see what I had written. Psalm 116:10-11 were underlined. They read: I believed in you, so I said "I am deeply troubled, LORD" In my anxiety I cried out to you, "These people are all liars!" In the margin, I wrote: "I cannot control what others do, I can control whether or not I take it to God." True.

The Beatles, Mary, and When Peace Like a River...

This is a repost. But it fits with my sermon for Saturday night, so I thought I'd throw it out there for you: You tell me... was Paul McCartney a closet fundamentalist? ...or was he at least influenced by Horatio Spafford? When I find myself in times of trouble, mother Mary comes to me, speaking words of wisdom, let it be. And in my hour of darkness she is standing right in front of me, speaking words of wisdom, let it be. When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, When sorrows like sea billows roll; Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say, It is well, it is well, with my soul. Let it be, let it be, let it be, let it be. Whisper words of wisdom, let it be. It is well, with my soul, It is well, with my soul, It is well, it is well, with my soul. And when the broken hearted people living in the world agree, there will be an answer, let it be. For though they may be parted there is still a chance that they will see, there will be an answer. let it be. Though Satan should b

5 Lists of 3. Simplifying the Process of Spiritual Formation

Captain Jack Sparrow held one of the Pirate Lord's eight pieces of nine. I just get a kick out of that term. Today, I give you five lists of three. These are five different lists which each seek to describe (not necessarily define) the process of spiritual formation . These lists are not meant to be comprehensive, nor are they solely instructional; but hopefully they provide some opportunity for reflection. Here we go: 1. A Church's Approach to Spiritual Formation: Teach Biblical Content Encourage Spiritual Disciplines Empower Christlike Mission 2. A Group Approach to Spiritual Formation: Partnering for growth together Serving the church together Engaging the world together 3. A Personal Approach to Spiritual Formation: Be a disciple Be invitational Be missional 4. A Progressive Approach to Spiritual Formation: Leave Life (for Christ's) Live Life (of obedience) Give Life (for others) 5. A Progressive Approach to Spiritual Formation (2): Obey Love Bear Fruit What do you t