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Follow Jesus to the Ends of the Earth

Month: February 2016

Leap Day!

What will you do with this extra day in your life, a day that comes only once very four years?

Here’s some notable happenings on past Leap Days (along with my commentary):

In 1692, Sarah Good, Sarah Osborne & Tituba, (a Native American servant) were the first people to be accused of witchcraft in Salem Massachusetts. Bummer of a day.

In 1940, at the 12th Academy Awards, “Gone with the Wind” won eight Oscars. Frankly my dear, I don’t give a d#@n.

In 1968, the US ended regular flights with nuclear bombs. (We used to fly airplanes around the US loaded with atomic bombs…)

In 1976, for the first time on television, ABC-TV broadcasts the hit movie “The Sound of Music.” Rebroadcast annually ever since to the delight of my wife!

Whether you’re involved in witchcraft or bombs or just love to sing on mountaintops, I hope you enjoy your extra day!

Kintsugi

I recently was introduced to Kintsugi – the Japanese art of repairing pottery with gold or silver lacquer and understanding that the piece is more beautiful for having been broken.

Life involves change and loss, scars and pain, chips and dings and sometimes we’re completely broken. But the art of Kintsugi reminds us of resilience and grace and overcoming and healing and putting the pieces back together and the reality that no one needs be perfect.

How cool is that? What a fabulous picture of how the Lord redeems each of us from what we have been to what we will be.

 

If the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.

Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company.

Perseverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.

Billionaires and the Widow

I recently watched a 60 Minutes report on a group of billionaires, led by Warren Buffet, who have pledged to give at least half of their fortunes away during their lifetime or in their will when they pass on. You have to be impressed with their commitment and the sheer amounts of money they can give. Billions and billions of dollars to help others. You also have to be impressed with the good things that can be done with this amount of money. Things like eradicating smallpox or polio in the world, educating masses of children and helping raise millions out of abject poverty.

However, as I watched the report, I couldn’t help but think about another person who gave away all of her fortune many years ago. While Jesus and his disciples are visiting the temple in Jerusalem, Jesus watched the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He then observed a poor widow put two small copper coins. Jesus makes this comment, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

The billionaires on TV gave from their abundance, copious amounts of funds, and should be commended. They rightfully received accolades and publicity by giving in such ways. I, however, will never be in the position to give such sums of money. Which is really not the issue and not the challenge to me. It’s so huge I can’t comprehend it.

The widow’s gift is much more challenging. I also give from my wealth, not from my poverty. Yet who does Jesus point out for praise?

Movements That Change the World

I just finished Movements That Change the World, by Steve Addison.  It’s a fabulous book and should be required reading for anyone interested in missions. The book details spiritual movements both historically and in contemporary terms.

Addison describes 5 aspects of what contributes to a spiritual movement:

White Hot Faith
Commitment to a Cause
Contagious Relationships
Rapid Mobilization
Adaptive Methods

Here’s my favorite quote from the book:

“In the renewal and expansion of the church, the breakthroughs always occur on the fringe of ecclesiastical power – never at the center. In every generation, in some obscure place, God is beginning something new. That’s where we need to be.”

I encourage you to check it out!

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