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June 20, 2016

We were made not primarily that we may love God (though we were made for that too) but that God may love us, that we may become objects in which the Divine love may rest ‘well pleased’. To ask that God’s love should be content with us as we are is to ask that God should cease to be God: because He is what He is, His love must, in the nature of things, be impeded and repelled, by certain stains in our present character, and because He already loves us He must labour to make us lovable. We cannot even wish, in our better moments, that He could reconcile Himself to our present impurities… What we would here and now call our ‘happiness’ is not the end God chiefly has in view: but when we are such as He can love without impediment, we shall in fact be happy.C.S. Lewis, The Problem of PainI was

June 13, 2016

Now Faith, in the sense in which I am here using the word, is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods. For moods will change, whatever view your reason takes. I know that by experience. Now that I am a Christian I do have moods in which the whole thing looks very improbable: but when I was an atheist I had moods in which Christianity looked terribly probable. This rebellion of your moods against your real self is going to come anyway. That is why Faith is such a necessary virtue: unless you teach your moods 'where they get off', you can never be either a sound Christian or even a sound atheist, but just a creature dithering to and fro, with its beliefs really dependent on the weather and the state of its digestion. Consequently one

June 06, 2016

SUPREME HEADQUARTERS ALLIED EXPEDITIONARY FORCE Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force! You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you. In company with our brave Allies and brothers-in-arms on other Fronts, you will bring about the destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world. Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened. He will fight savagely... Our air offensive has seriously reduced their strength in the air and their capacity to wage war on the

June 02, 2016

We have to pray with our eyes on God, not on the difficulties. Oswald Chambers Dear BraveHearts, Quotes like the one above can land a little over simplistic or even trite on my heart. Something quietly, yet a bit aloofly, rises in me that says, "Easy for you to say." That is often the expression I use when I am in or being pulled toward the smaller story. The smaller story, by the way, is the one we find ourselves in when we are at the center of things. And, oh, there is a gravitational pull to that center. We have often said... If you are in the center of the story, you are living in way to small a story. Yet, I find it way too easy to be sucked into the smaller story. The enemy of our hearts and the false self (flesh) creature we contend with both seem to be at work, wielding their

May 24, 2016

You know that feeling you get when that something or someone you had high hopes for goes wrong? The moment when circumstances and events go strangely and wildly "south" making a good idea in the eyes of some, bad? It is a second in time when the planning, preparation, and hopes are replaced by a reality in which there was no preparing for—a moment when something was switched and good intentions are received with a scowling, "What the Heck!" When I look back at my story, I have too many of these moments, more than I care to share. I do remember that time I made plans for a romantic picnic, and I placed the blanket on a cow pie. Another time it was a family camp fire with wood that was laced with poison ivy. Sheesh! Some brilliant mind once said, "the road to hell is paved with good

May 17, 2016

Over the past several months, I have had the opportunity to walk with God and a few good friends into the Vision, Mission, and Strategy for Zoweh in the weeks and months ahead. It has been a good and hard exploration but a very very clarifying one. It started with a challenge: What would you do if money were no obstacle? Seldom are any of us allowed to think or ponder. Placed on our interstate a few miles East and West from our home are a few strategic billboards… NC Lottery billboards. At the center of it is a big number letting everyone know the amount it has risen to and inviting all to play. Often, when I see that number, it frees my heart to think… What would I do?Exploring the list of friends, families, missions, and ministries to give away to is always fun. Working the ledger and

May 09, 2016

Consider it nothing but joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing. James 1:2-4 (AMP) "Don’t be so hard on yourself. I can bring good even out of your mistakes. Your finite mind tends to look backward, longing to undo decisions you have come to regret. This is a waste of time and energy, leading only to frustration. Instead of floundering in the past, release your mistakes to Me. Look to Me in trust, anticipating that My infinite creativity can weave both good choices and bad into a

May 02, 2016

"There is no passion to be found playing small…in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living." Nelson Mandela There is an invitation from Jesus to live humbly. Humility, contrary to popular misinterpretation, is not living in the shadows or small corners. Humility is an internal settled heart that knows who it is and lives with contentment, yet with fierce intention. Jesus was/is the expert and our greatest ally in becoming like Him. So many men and women have been compromised. It happened to Robin and me, and the enemy of our hearts will attempt it again and again throughout all our lifetimes. The line between Fear and being fully alive to God is a fine one. Many hearts haven’t seen that line in years, much less crossed over it to feel the weight of its

May 01, 2016

In May of 1995, a story written by Randal Wallace was brought to life on the big screen and unveiled in movie theaters across the globe. This month, 20 years later, the film, Braveheart ranks among one of the greatest films of all time. Like all great stories, it possesses all the essential ingredients we hold dear: love, adventure, inspiration, justice, friendship, family, betrayal, and the timeless essential ingredient of good verses evil, just to mention a few. The story, set in 13th Century Scotland, has stood the test of time and there are many good reasons. So, during this month of May, I want to give tribute to Braveheart on it’s 20 inspiring and impacting years. I. Braveheart is a story about Fathers and Sons I bet I have seen this film 15 times. I bet I have seen clips, scenes and

April 25, 2016

Son of man reach out your hand & touch my weary heart. Son of man reach out your hand & heal my failing heart. It's you that I need... It's you that I need. Son of man reach out your hand & touch my weary mind. Son of man reach out your hand & heal my tired soul. It's you that I need... It's you that I need. It’s You, Loud Harp Ever have one of those songs that, after you take it in the first time, it sticks to you? There is an affect that draws you to it and it to you. That has been this song for me the past two months. I’ve listened to it most days and often with the “repeat” button activated. The first time I heard it, I found myself leaning in… anticipating the next line, then the next, and as it was washing over me, my heart was declaring it to be true. For me then and now, I needed