Showing posts from December, 2011

Personal Growth with Intent & Focus (New Year's Eve)

2011 was an amazing year, and I'm looking forward to a 2012 that is even more so!  Making New Year's Resolutions isn't something I usually do, but this year I'm feeling an inner drive for increased intent and focus  in my life.  I've taken some time today to think about personal growth, and have come up with some goals that I resolve to experience in the coming year. 

I am a teacher/preacher.  This is who I am, and also happens to be my job.  Predominantly, these goals are to promote growth in this area.  These goals are also to boost or sustain my spiritual, mental, psychological, relational, and physical health.  Much of this I'm already doing on some level, but now do so with fresh intent and focus.  So, in 2012 I'm resolving to achieve these goals...

* carry my journal everywhere and write something in it every day (great ideas will NOT get away this year).
* post an entry to my blog at least once a week (likely thoughts I've journaled).
* read o…

Tears of Joy!

We forget far too often how far a simple word of encouragement can go.  I truly believe I have the best job in the world... and one of the most difficult.  There are many reasons for this, and I'll not innumerate them here, but a part of it is this: being a Pastor of a Christian church in the 21st Century Western context is designed to be a very lonely vocation.  While I take measures regularly to combat this, there still are seasons that make you wonder, "Does this even matter?" 

Today, I received a note in the mail (to my house, not the office) from a super-sweet lady from my congregation.  Here is a little bit of why I am so encouraged and blessed today:

Dear Pastor Steve & Shelly,
I just want ya'll to know how much I enjoyed the Christ Birthday Celebration Sunday morning.  I am 85 yrs. and it was the most touching, so beautiful of a service I can ever remember.  I so wished all my family (4 sons & wives, 11 grandchildren and 25 great-grands) had been ther…

Merry Christmas (Jib-Jab)

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Unique ministry opportunity

Recently I was asked to help with a new recovery ministry beginning in Florida, in a very unique way.  A friend of mine, calling upon a specific skill set of mine, asked me to come up with a playlist of songs from the 90s which those who came of age in that era would hear and immediately think, "Yes!  I remember that song!"  Here is what I've come up with off the top of my head.  Any other suggestions?

-"Smells Like Teen Spirit" by Nirvana
-"Baby One More Time" by Britney Spears
-"You Oughta Know" by Alanis Morissette
-"Losing My Religion" by REM
-"Nothing Compares 2 U" by Sinead O'Connor
-"Vogue" by Madonna
-"All I Wanna Do" by Sheryl Crow
-"Mmmmbop" by Hanson
-"Mysterious Ways" by U2
-"Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)" by C+C Music Factory
-"You Can't Touch This" by MC Hammer
-"Loser" by Beck
-"No Rain" by Blind Melon

Making Room for a New Thing (Advent Thought)


Making Room for Rest (Advent thought)


Great Unexpextations (Advent thoughts)

This week I was perusing some of the items in our community pantry at Oaklawn church of God when I came across this!

This is a Christmas stocking that I made when I was a kid - probably 5 or 6 years old - when we lived in Louisiana.  For many years this stocking found itself full of small toys, Hershey's kisses, apples & oranges, and Nerf footballs (yes, a Nerf football every year)!  How it wound up this week in our church community pantry, in Hot Springs, AR, is one of life's great mysteries for sure.  But what an unexpected surprise trip to my childhood!  Unexpectedly coming across this hideously beautiful work of art brought me great joy!

Recently we experienced a death in our household - the fridge.  Getting the repairmen scheduled, and getting them to show up when scheduled was quite the ordeal (I'm trying really hard to NOT make this blog an anti-commercial for Sears).  After a week of no fridge, and a lot of "rescheduled" appointments, we were informed…