The Church in the World

This year, our church opted to do something a bit different in place of our usual homecoming. We hosted a party for the community. Instead of focusing on our history, reminiscing, and then feasting in the fellowship hall, we invited the neighborhood to come out for free BBQ. And it was great! This wasn’t about getting people to come to […]

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Why is Asking for Prayer Hard?

Pride. That’s the short answer. Last week I asked a group of friends to pray for me as a sort of last resort. Why in the world would that be my last resort?? I tried all sorts of things to resolve my challenge on my own. When nothing worked and I began to feel desperate, I asked for prayer. Why did it take me so long? Basically, because I’m too proud to air my weakness. And I don’t want anyone to think I’m being all dramatic. Now, I’ll be honest, I like attention. But I like positive attention. You know, the kind where people look at me with admiration rather than pity. I’ve confessed before to my praise addiction. Asking for prayer does NOT feed it. As a matter of fact, it does just the opposite. Having a challenge I’m unable to overcome on my own does not make me feel competent or admirable. I could flip this and say it takes courage to ask for prayer–and that’s admirable. Except . . . it shouldn’t take courage to ask for prayer. Asking for prayer should be our go-to, gut reaction to problems. In our ladies’ Bible study we share prayer requests and have a sort of “rule” that you can’t pass and say all is well, you don’t need prayer. Because we ALL need prayer pretty much ALL the time. Big issues, little conflicts, medium-sized problems–we’re never without at least a few. And […]

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Start the week with words of love

Twice yesterday I heard someone talk about the importance of sharing words of love or affirmation. That old saying about how sticks and stones can break bones but words can never hurt is nonsense. Words can be excruciating. Conversely, they can be precious, healing, inspiring, blessed gifts when shared in the right way. So, I thought I’d start the week […]

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Who ARE the Poor?

Sunday’s sermon was about helping the poor. Our scripture was from James 2 which cautions us not to show partiality for those who appear to be better off. Which set me to thinking about what, exactly, it means to be poor. There’s the obvious answer–people who don’t have enough to meet their basic needs of food, shelter, clothing . . […]

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Laying Up Treasure

This past weekend a good friend and her family hosted a yard sale to empty out her grandparents’ house. Health issues and advancing years have forced the couple into a facility and it’s time to think about selling the little house they’ve lived in for so long. Thistle and I stopped by for moral support AND to shop for a […]

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Royal Weddings and Real Life

When I called my dad on Sunday I jokingly asked him if he’d watched the royal wedding. He scoffed and asked why everyone seems to care about it so much. Indeed. Why DO we care about it so much? I think as pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps Americans the notion of being born into royalty is wildly exotic. Oh sure, we have well-know families and figures–American royalty–like the Vanderbilts, Kennedys, Oprah, movie stars, athletes, and so on but even then if you look far enough back you’ll find someone who worked his or her tail off to get where they are. Which means, theoretically, I could work my tail off and launch a similar legacy. Conversely, I can never work or earn my way into royalty. But I COULD marry into it (well, not ME, I already have a prince of a husband). And now an American has done just that. And while she’s minor Hollywood royalty, she’s also mixed race and divorced. Her mother is a social worker, her father a television lighting director. She’s a lot like . . . regular folks. Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, proves that even the wildest dreams sometimes come true. Rachel Hauck has written the Royal Wedding series starting with Once Upon a Prince which was recently made into a Hallmark movie. Each book follows a royal mismatch made in heaven. Fairy tales, really, except now . . . well, for Meghan Markle the fairy tale is real. And isn’t […]

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