Faith for the Long Haul
Oh, the challenges that life can bring. We all face potential pitfalls every day. Many people are simply one catastrophe away from a major meltdown. We all have to deal with problems. What we cannot do, is to let the trials that life bring our way to derail us and take us off our game. James instructs us to consider!
Happy New Year! I am starting this year in the book of James. I am planning on taking this day by day and verse by verse. I hope and pray that you will join me on my journey through James. Please feel free to leave comments and share this post. I also want to encourage you to go to youversion.com and select a daily bible reading plan.
As I sit in my home office on this last day of 2018, I cannot help reflecting with some sadness over the events that shaped this tumultuous year that is quickly coming to an end. It has been a year of hurt and uncertainty, a year of challenge, and great change. I feel this morning as I write these words, a great disconnect from a band of brothers I have known for years and honestly thought would walk through the fire with me. I feel that long (and what I believed strong) professional and personal
relationships have been tossed aside just like the Christmas wrappings from a week ago. These once cherished relationships, I was certain would follow me until the Lord called me home have disappeared along with the communication that once spotted my day. These connections have vanished leaving me feeling very alone on this final day of 2018 and facing the uncertainties of a new year.
As a church planter, husband, father and all around manly man. I feel the need to confess that I have a love-hate relationship with accountability. I find my self 58 years into life, 38 years into a marriage, 36 years as a father, six years into our planting/revitalization journey, and I have been a manly man ever since the first time I got my butt kicked on the vacant lot near my house as a child. I have learned some essential things about accountability in my venture through life that I would like to share with you. I believe my life lessons apply to everyone’s lives, so I wanted to take some time and share some of these hard-learned truths with you.
I want to start this post telling you how incredibly frustrated I am. I got up this morning on the right side of the bed to a beautiful sunrise. I was able to get some work done and enjoy some quiet time in my favorite chair at home. I needed to go by to the office for a bit while my wife was going to attend a 9:30 a.m. Bible Study. So, we headed out leaving the house about 8:55 a.m. My wife wanted to stop by Whataburger (which she has this convenient app with cash on it) to get something to drink before going to the Study. We get to the fast food restaurant and there are two cars in line at the drive-through with no one at the window. I automatically think that this is going to be a fast evolution and then I will be on my way in just a couple of minutes. It was nine o’clock a.m. when I pulled up behind two other customers. At 9:06 a.m. I finally made it to the speaker. Here is what takes place:
In the lull of my morning, I was thinking about our amazing country. I took some time to look at the results of some of the state primaries that took place yesterday. I also noticed the theme that Politicians use in appealing to their base. It is astounding at how they stretch the truth to appeal to the masses. Our elected officials try and connect with their constituency by acting as if they understand what an average person deals with on a day to day basis. They want us to believe that they have our best interest at heart. I am neither a Democrat or Republican. I consider my self a realist that wants the government to keep their hands out of my pocket and to leave the Constitution alone. I can honestly tell you, that since Ronald Regan, there has not been any politician that strikes a chord with me. Most professional politicians are so far removed from the people they represent. I am not angry about anything, I just believe that if we want to really experience a change in this great country, we are going to have to do things differently. We need term limits! We need as a country of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, to raise the bar. We need to thoroughly think about the people we are electing before we pull the lever or pencil our candidate in. I believe that the majority of the people serving in the Senate and House have been there way too long.
There are 24 hours in a day! We have been given 1440 minutes to use any way that we choose. We each have 86,400 seconds available to accomplish our goals. For the creative soul, sometimes making the most of the time is a struggle. I have learned that creativity requires time, and most of us live in a time-starved culture. Our lives are busy with lots of expectations from others and by the time we get around to being creative, we are worn out. Sometimes we are so busy that we do not have a chance to disengage from the mundane just to be creative. This lack of creative time, my friend, is a travesty.