Friday, February 26, 2010

Have A Little Faith

Paul Quin has come up with one of the coolest ideas I’ve heard recently for a Kingdom Assignment. Here’s the way he explains it:

This is the plan...

My bright idea is basically a raffle with a little twist.

First, I will take the $100 seed money that was given to me and match it with $100 of my own money.

We are now at $200. This is the starting prize.

Anyone who participates in this experiment will have the chance to choose the charity that receives all of the prize money. No strings attached. Just tell me who you want it to go to, and I will donate it in your name. It's that easy.

To have a chance to win and add to the prize, just contribute at least $5. For every $5 donated, you will get a "ticket" and a chance to win the whole thing and help out your favorite charity.

Donate $10, you get two tickets. Donate $100, you get 20 tickets. You get the idea.

On April 5th, I will have a random drawing using the tickets that everyone "bought."

Donations can be made through the Donate Button at the top of the blog. PayPal will accept all major credit cards and direct PayPal payments of course. You can also mail a check to me directly (see profile for address) or give it to me when you see me.

I don't know exactly where this is going to end up, but I can't wait to find out!

Everyone should visit Paul’s blog -Have A Little Faith - and have a little faith – you never know what might happen and it’s going to be powerful in the Kingdom!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Disturbing and Comforting

As I’ve studied the Scripture for this Sunday, Mark 3: 1 – 5 (Jesus heals a man with a withered hand), I have been reminded of a lesson a friend shared years ago of a common thread throughout the gospels:

Jesus comforts the disturbed and disturbs the comfortable.

Think about that for a moment.

Jesus comforts the disturbed and disturbs the comfortable.

For the most part the scribes and Pharisees were comfortable. They had carefully constructed a religious life that was perfectly defined and predictable. “Church” was comfortable. Then Jesus arrives, forgiving sins and healing on the Sabbath and associating with questionable people. God begins to act in less defined and unpredictable ways. That’s disturbing to the comfortable.

To the disturbed, those suffering physically or emotionally or relationally, Jesus brings comfort. In the rising of the Sun of Righteousness there is healing in His wings!

I know that too often I allow myself to grow comfortable. I want God to be predictable; the unknown makes me nervous. Thankfully, Jesus refuses to leave me there. He always stirs things up and calls me to join Him in ministries of comfort and healing.

Take a moment to consider:

  • · Are the places in my life, especially where I am following Jesus, where I’ve become too comfortable?
  • · What are ways that Jesus might be disturbing me so that I might join Him in bringing comfort to others?
  • · Where am I most disturbed and need to be comforted?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Soles4Souls in Haiti

One of the tangible needs right now in Haiti is shoes. Imagine a nation covered with the rubble and debris of an earthquake and it’s easy to understand that being barefoot is potentially dangerous.

Grace is responding to the needs in Haiti in a variety of ways and responding to the need for shoes through a shoe drive to support Soles4Souls.

I’ve agreed to donate my favorite basketball shoes – a pair a bright purple Nike hightops (only worn 4 times and only on the court) – if the Grace family and friends will dontale 4,999 pairs.

You can find more information about how to donate shoes at

I’m going to miss my purple shoes (I hope)!

PS – I have purple basketball shoes because they were all out of orange!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The end of the basketball season

Our eldest daughter, Kelli, began to play organized basketball when she was in the 4th grade – 12 seasons ago. I spent that first year in the stands but the following moved to the sidelines as a volunteer coach. I kept coaching Kelli until she made her high school team (where she finally enjoyed the benefits of a professional coach).

When our youngest, Jamie, began to play (also in 4th grade) I found myself once again on the sidelines. That season I coached (with a lot of help) both an 8th and 4th grade team. Jamie also moved on to more experienced coaching and for the last couple of years I’ve moved from the stands to the bench to the scorers table where I quietly (because that’s the rule) run the clock and scoreboard.

Tonight is Senior Recognition Night for Jamie’s high school. Kim and I will get the honor of standing beside her as she plays in her last regular season game.

This afternoon I’ve been thinking about how much 12 seasons of basketball have defined our lives and our family. I’ve coached 9 different teams. Kim has served as team mom too many times to count. My office shelves contain pictures and mementos of teams from South Carolina to California to Houston. It has been a rich and rewarding adventure and I wouldn't trade a single moment.

Tonight, in a sense (because who knows how deep we might go in post-season play), after 12 amazing years the basketball season finally ends for our family.

And to be honest I’m a little sad….

Monday, February 1, 2010

Extreme Living

Last week I posted a blog about people that participate in Extreme Ironing - taking the rather mundane task of ironing to the extreme by doing it in exotic, remote, and sometimes dangerous locations.

When I saw the pictures I had to laugh, but I also started thinking about other ways people find to live their lives to the extreme. With a good internet connection it wasn't hard to come up with a few:

Car refinishing - why just add some new paint or wheels when you can really do it up right? For example, how would you combine a love of cats and a passion for rebuilding VW Bugs?

Collecting - we all know someone that has a prized collection of something, but until today I didn't know it was possible for such effort to go into the accumulation of twine.

Team Sports - if you thought Extreme Ironing was the ultimate thrill check out Extreme Cello Playing - made all the more exciting when engaged in as a team working together in perfect harmony.

All of these people pursing extreme activities have something in common - they have figured out ways that they can live life to the fullest - ways that may or may not appeal to us, but ways that have meaning for them.

How many of us have the same attitude about life, especially our life with God?

How can we take our passion for God to the extreme?