31 December, 2009

2010. A better you...or rather more of Him?

It is only hours away. This time often is spent in one of a few ways...
In the company of many, or maybe just one. Thoughts...of year(s) past, or of what the future holds,...or a unique division between the two where one's mind can not get around either of them for all of it's running back and forth.
This New Year's Eve I find myself yet again in the latter state of thought. My anylitical mind is running itself ragged. Ragged from thinking on this past year: my failures, shortfallings, (wrongfully claimed) successes; and this next year: resolutions, goals, hopes, dreams.

It always seems split. Negative in the past/Positive in the future.
I think that every year...for every single person who gives it any thought; the passing of one year to another is split. Even for the most positive or negative, the most level-headed, the most realistic, all of us have at least the smallest imbalance in viewing and comparing; yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

Simply we have hope that tomorrow will allow us something that today or yesterday did not. Plainly stated we want better...better...better. Resolution after resolution we make:
in 2009 we remember a haste word said and the pain it brought to a friend...so we resolve
in 2009 we noticed that we drank too much...so we resolve
in 2009 we realized that we spent far more time in the office than at home with the family...so we resolve
in 2009 we see our figure and we desire to hold a nearer appearance to a model...so we resolve
in 2009 we recall that when we were younger the family ate at the dinner table...so we resolve
The general thought is always that we are able to create in ourselves and within our families something better than what we previously were. How wrong we are.

Looking over 2009. I recount my offenses to fellow men, I see glaring error, sins galore I find...every effort fell short, every deed tried in earnest found to be selfish, at times I wallowed in my shortcomings, never did I do anything to my betterment. Yes, looking over the year I can not help but want self improvement...but will resolving do that? No...

You see,
I am nothing good. My "flesh is weak", my heart..."it is deceictful above all things", "the doing of good is not present in me". My seemingly selfless acts...are but a mask to selfish motives. I am worthless, corrupt, vile.


A better me in 2010!?!?
Yes, but if I strive for my own means all will be "but chasing after the wind". Yes, but if I use my own strength all will be cut as short as I first began.The imbalance comes from believing myself to be greater than I am...

I know, I can become better only by He who lives in me.

So. My resolution: to serve my King with a more sincere heart, to understand at a greater depth my Creator, to draw ever more near to my Savior, to know Christ Jesus more today than yesterday.

I can only do these things by spending time with Him. More prayer. More Scripture. More Fellowship.

I am confident, "He who began a good work...will carry it on to completion..."
"HE must become greater, i must become less."

25 December, 2009



This Christmas,
my heart is with an ole friend.

Her name is Alvina. I met her while I was in Alaska. She impacted my life more than she knows. She became a Christian while I was there...what a beautiful day that was.
Well...in hindsight it was like every other day in Juneau. It was foggy and misty.
We (the entire project all 45 or more of us) had just climbed Mnt Robert. We prayer walked on the way up. When we arrived we sat down. We sat quietly...then we prayed...then we sang. You could see the entire city of Juneau...and Auke Bay...
God's great creation all around. There was snow directly behind us...(which later we would have the largest snowball fight I have seen...and even later in which we would slide down time and time again) there were mountains...there was ocean water...there were beautiful souls of beautiful people.
I remember the most beautiful soul of that day.
I remember watching her be moved.
I remember watching her accept Christ into her heart!
I remember hearing her speak to Him.

It was so surreal. It moved me much...But never as much as I wanted.

Alvina and I were very different. Everyone saw that. She was city, I country. She liberal, I conservative. We were different crowds and everyone saw that.

Alvina and I were so similar. Few saw that. We were deep, sincere.
Alvina and I were the same.

After that moment on that mountain, she was more similar to me than ever before. She loved my Lord. She became a Sister. I hope I never forget that day on that mountainside above Alaska. I hope a never forget praying with her and a few of the guys following her excepting Christ.

I have journaled for several years now...I have a stack of them. They are mine...my writing to God. Only one other person has ever written in one...Alvina. She also wrote on my heart...

Alvina taught me what I can do with this life...
I pray I never ever forget what I as a Christian listening to my Savior can accomplish for His kingdom.

In closing,
I do not know why my heart is so burdened for Alvina tonight. But, I know there must be a reason.
I ask that you join me in praying for her. Now that you know a bit of her story I hope you can find it easier to pray specifically for her. She is a beautiful Sister, and Christ has a beautiful plan for her!

Merry Christmas, Alvina!!!!

21 December, 2009

Where is my heart?


Tonight, I finally watched a few dvd's that Jim Lee put together. Jim Lee is the guy that is always in a beat up van at the duck pond (or the ole' fishin' hole). I for four years have been curious about who he was and what he was doing. I always assumed he was just lonely...I always planned on starting up a conversation with him, but somehow I never seemed to catch him outside of that van.
Well this last September, I again noticed he was there. As I drove by him, I thought..."inside that van or not I am going to at least say hi". So, I drove around the pond, parked beside him, and started a convo.
Wouldn't you know it made my day. He is a Christian...and disabled (thus the reason I never saw him out of the vehicle), he loves birds, and he was putting together a video of that which he loved, with Christian songs. He wanted to share Christ. To share him with anyone who would give him the time.

Well. Tonight I am watching a scratchy, slightly out of focus, video of all kinds of birds and animals set to the sound of everyone from Chris Rice to Amy Grant singing about our Lord.

Last night, I for the first time in a very long time allowed myself to think about and miss a very good friend of mine. James Hensley.
James, I do believe touched my life more than just about anyone else. He too was someone, who the rest of the world would say was short-changed in life. But, he would never be one to believe that. James proclaimed to the world Jesus Christ. He shared him with any single person who gave him time.

- Jim Lee; unable to leave his vehicle, yet spending all his time making something that reaches to those so far away.
- James Hensley; knocked down time and time again, yet always smiling, always reaching, always loving.

- Jim Lee & James Hensley; two people who give (gave) from a full heart. Two people who serve(d) Christ with all they have.

Lord, where is my heart? Help me. Help me live as those who give you all.

Thank you, James. Thank you, Jim.