Tuesday, May 4, 2010

I drove past Jesus 3 times today

So I'm near the University of Akron today heading to a job-site and I see a woman in a wheelchair on a corner with a sign asking for food or clothes ("anything helps......God Bless" the sign notes). But the light changed and I wasn't going to block traffic and get out of my I drove on.

Then as I approached another intersection there's a guy with a similar sign and the light has just turned red so I'm thinking "I have plenty of time to get out, or even call the guy over". But there's this big SUV in the lane closest to the sign guy and I'm in the middle lane, so I pull up beside the big SUV and it hides my car from the sign guy. Then I sit there and wonder why the guy in the big, shiny SUV with the chrome rims doesn't give sign guy a little something. I mean he is CLOSER to sign guy after all. But he doesn't and the light turns green and ..............I drive on.

Very next light, no kidding, is sign person number three. So I've noticed beggars near the highway at the U of A before and I'm now starting to wonder why they're near a college campus and not downtown near all the big office buildings. Perhaps panhandling laws? Or maybe the asking is better near 20 somethings who work and go to classes and have just enough vs. those of us who have plenty and work hard for it thank you very much? Okay that's a subject for another posting. Let's go back to my short story of being UNchristian today.

So yeah the very next light is person number three. But the light is green and I'm on the clock for work anyway so.................I drive on.

Then I thought of Matthew 5:42 where Jesus tells us to "give to those who ask". The sadder part of that is I just listened to a sermon about this teaching last Sunday!

I'll bet somewhere today, just outside my range of hearing, a rooster crowed.

Friday, March 5, 2010


So what do an RN, AHC, Pharmacist, Carpenter, Marketing Director and 4 nursing students have in common? Not much.

Right now we are acquaintances.

Tomorrow we arrive in Peru together.

In a few days we become fast friends.

Those of you who've been on a mission trip understand this dynamic. There is something amazing about experiencing God together that binds you to each other. It happens with every team. This one will be no different.

Some of us are stressed. Some are unemployed. Some have never volunteered for anything in our life. Some have had a week that turned them upside down.

Tomorrow it all gets set aside.

"Jesus, show us your heart for your people and children in Peru."

Monday, November 23, 2009

100 years of Progress

We’ve come a long way baby……………….

I received an email this week with some interesting statistics about 1909:

- The average wage was 22 cents an hour
- 95% of all births took place at home
- Eggs were 14 cents a dozen
- 8% of homes had a telephone
- 6% of Americans graduated from high school
- 2 0f 10 adults couldn't read or write

I cannot corroborate any of the above.

The email also listed the 5 leading causes of death, one of which was diarrhea. So I did look this up ( and found that diarrhea was indeed the 4th leading cause of death in 1909. By 1911 it was down to 6th, 8th in 1918, out of the top 10 in 1933 and gone from the top 20 by 1960.

We’ve come a long way baby……………………….or have we?

One of the top 5 culprits in killing 30,000 children under the age of five today (and by today I mean in the last 24 hours): diarrhea.

And tomorrow we lose 30,000 more.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Read Ezekiel 16:49. Better yet read Ezekiel chapter 16. It's basically the story of God picking up the nation of Israel out of the the blood and muck after her being discarded and thrown away at her birth. How God saw her and rescued her and gently and lovingly cleaned her up. God nurtures her and adorns her with fine clothing and shining jewelry. He puts a crown on her head and takes her as his wife.

And she prostitutes herself.

So in verse 49 God compares Israel to a town called Sodom. Sodom was completely wiped out by God because the town was so wicked. There was constant lewd sex and drunkenness and revelry all day and night. So God wipes out the town.

But verse 49 clarifies Sodom's sins some and they sound a lot more broad and general to me. It says "Sodom's sins were pride, gluttony and laziness, while she closed her borders to the poor and needy, in hopes of protecting her own interests."

Okay it doesn't say that exactly. My paraphrase.

In the New Living Translation: "Sodom's sins were pride, gluttony and laziness, while the poor and needy suffered outside her door."


If you're a reader check out "The Last Town on Earth" by Thomas Mullen. It's a novel set in 1918. While the country was embroiled in war a plague of biblical magnitude erupts on the home front. The town of Commonwealth, Washington decides to isolate itself and keep everyone from coming and going, by all means necessary. Check this book out and see how it worked out for them.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Hiding Place

I just finished reading "The Hiding Place" by Corrie ten Boom. This story of a family from Holland that hid Jews during the German occupation was incredible. The faith they lived out makes me jealous and introspective. My life looks cushy and boring in comparison. I don't wish their hardships on my life. But I am jealous of their wild adventure with the Savior.

One of my favorite quotes from the book: "I know that the experiences of our lives, when we let God use them, become the mysterious and perfect preparation for the work he will give us to do."

The saddest story in the book is when the ten Boom family asks a local pastor to care for a Jewish baby that just arrived at their home. Corrie picks up the story as she pulls back the covers so this pastor can see the baby: "There was a long silence. The man bent forward, his hand in spite of himself reaching for the tiny fist curled around the blanket. For a moment I saw compassion and fear struggle in his face. Then he straightened. 'No. Definitely not. We could lose our lives for that Jewish child!'"

Oh my, this guy probably missed the adventure of a lifetime. And didn't a Jewish child lose His life for this pastor already? Hmmm.................

One lesson Corrie learned from her sister Betsie: to give thanks in all circumstances. When the sisters arrived in Ravensbruck concentration camp they soon discovered their barracks and straw bedding were flea infested. Betsie insisted they could give thanks even for fleas. I read this thinking, as the author did also, that there is no possible way God can use fleas for anything positive. And as I write this there is a verse that comes to mind that goes something like "my thoughts are higher than your thoughts; my ways higher than your ways" ...........or something close. And months later Corrie writes that she never could understand the freedom her and the ladies of Barracks 28 had while on knitting duty. You see, the German guards and officers NEVER entered this area. Why? The fleas! And while the knitters of Barracks 28 worked, the ten Boom sisters were able to read to the others from the bible they managed to smuggle in. And light shined in the darkest of places.

So you may assume, as I did, that "The Hiding Place" is where Corrie ten Boom and her family hid and cared for Jews. A physical place.

You would be wrong.

Read the book and find out what the real hiding place is.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

a person of influence

I wanted to encourage any readers of my blog (okay, both of you) to read this one as well:

Kathleen is a high school student that is a great writer, an aspiring actress, and a Jesus follower. I found her most recent blog, titled "Tom Hanks!", very interesting. She writes about how awesome it was to meet him and spend a day with him.

But I can tell you I have met someone way more interesting than Tom Hanks. I know this young lady, let's call her Kat, that is way more influential than Tom. She recently spent time in a foreign country learning about God's heart for children on the margins and the poor. And she came home different.

She writes and blogs about her experiences and life and all kinds of interesting things. She has hopes and dreams that include building the kingdom of God in her lifetime and not just about how much stuff and money she can collect. And then she went to a theatre teacher along with her sister (let's call her Liz) and stated her concern about the inappropriateness of the play the class was to learn and perform. And lo and behold the teacher................changed the play!

That's leadership! That's courage! That's influence!

So you see, I know this girl with way more influence than Tom Hanks. A young lady with the hope of Christ in her heart who not only learned from me on a mission trip, but taught me as well.

Kathleen Finley!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Got peace?

"You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! Trust in the Lord always, for the Lord God is the eternal Rock." Isaiah 26: 3,4 (NLT)

Trust: reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc., of a person or thing; confidence; hope.

Trust is not superficial or easy. It doesn't happen overnight. It comes from a deep relationship and time spent with someone. And trust is a two way street.

You don't, shouldn't even, trust someone that you met last night. You can't really know someone that you may or may not even spend an hour with on the weekend.

So how can we trust God if we really don't know Him?

I've been chewing on this verse this morning and I notice that the "perfect peace" comes from keeping my thoughts on God and trusting Him. I have to act. I have to move toward God.

I've also noticed that perfect peace is a place inside of me and not necessarily me getting what I want.