Category Archives: Family Lessons

6 Lessons from the Jo-Bits

Hi! My name is Jo-Bits! I’m “the boy!” Tootie the Poots got to post one of these yesterday, and I want my turn. So I made Daddy do some household chores (destroyed stuff that he has to fix) while I wrote this bloggy thingy.

IMG_59591. Always be prepared! When I leave the fortress (house), I always bring my sword You never know when the trumpet blast will sound for battle! I have three sisters and I am their protector. Daddy says, “God gave us hands so we can protect others.” So when we go on walks I like to be prepared to protect. You never know what kind of whether you’re going to encounter either. You should be prepared for all types. I sometimes wear shorts, a winter jacket, AND a hood of some sort! This way I prepared for whatever rain or cold or hot comes my way. Don’t tell my sisters, but this preparation is for the purpose of serving others. I carry a sword so I can protect my sisters. I have a raincoat to offer them if it rains and if they don’t take it – I scream at them (then Daddy talks to me about loving my sisters). I dress and outfit myself to help others. I think if big people would think of the things God gives them as opportunities to help others, maybe we wouldn’t need to carry swords around all the time.

DSPB41992. My hands were given to me to defend the weak! My sisters, Tootie the Poot and Bus Bus sometimes get scared… Ellie is seldom afraid, but sometimes she is scared too. When my sisters are afraid, I transform into Warrior Jo-Bits! I will smash bugs, destroy buildings, and generally wage war on anything that threatens my sisters. God made me mighty and I must use that might to protect the weak and stand up for justice!

IMG_59453. Make faces for fun. Be silly for the good of others! I like making faces, especially when Daddy says, “smile for the picture!” Making faces and being silly can be helpful too. When a sissy is upset, I like to try to make her laugh. Sometimes she is really sad and it is hard to cheer her up… that’s when I bring the silliest of faces out! Daddy says, “don’t sweat the small stuff and always remember, everything is small when you’re far enough away from it.” I like to make people back away from whatever it is that is making them said by making them laugh. As they laugh, their emotions get farther away from the circumstance that is causing them hurt and they start to see that the cookie that fell on the ground is not such a bad circumstance.

IMG_59634. Noise making is awesome, as long as you are contributing to the ruckus! I like people to know I am here. I think everyone ought to know I exist. So I make noise! I shake stuff and make sounds and bop around the room! Everyone sees me and I get to laugh with people at the silly sounds I make. I think God likes this. Daddy says, “There’s an appropriate time to add to the rhythm and music of life and an inappropriate time.” I think every time is appropriate to add to the noise of joy! You should try it! Go make some noise and let people know you exist. Write a poem (its not that hard… Daddy does it!), sing a song, dance around the room, grab to sticks and play drums on something (note: it’s best not to do this on your sisters… trust me, it doesn’t end well.) Make some noise, because silence can be golden, but noise is fun!

IMG_59375. Always check the stability of the fence that keeps you out. When we walk to the beaver’s house, I check the local fences to ensure their stability. It may seem odd, but I like to make sure that my neighbors have strong fortifications… even if they are there to keep me out. You see, I need to protect people with my hands, AND I need to protect people FROM my hands. I want to help my neighbors to be strong so that I will not accidentally hurt them or wander into their yards. Big people sometimes forget that we are responsible for protecting others from ourselves. This is part of loving people well. If I love my neighbors, I will protect them from others AND I will be careful to protect them from myself as well.

IMG_59306. Don’t forget, some of God’s greatest treasures are found in the dirt. I find all kinds of amazing things in the dirt – feathers, toys, pecans, bottle tops, moneys, etc… I think that God sees amazing things in the dirt too! So I like to look close and pick up the treasures He has left for me. Often, Daddy tells me to stop picking up trash (but that’s a discussion for another day). In the fall, I find pecans in the dirt. In the spring I find amazing rocks! In the summer, I complain because it’s hot. There are treasures in the dirt… you just have to look to find them. The dirt seems like it’s not valuable… but if you dig a bit, you find treasures (and sometimes trash)! It’s the same with people, I think. Sometimes we forget that the treasure is not when we see people at their best, but when we have to dig to find the treasure of their heart in the dirt. Just a thought – maybe we should spend a little more time looking for treasure in the dirt of our lives rather than trying to stay out of the mess of living?

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6 Lessons from Tootie the Poot!

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Sometimes Daddy needs a break, so I told him to “Go out of office!”

I’m Tootie the Poots! You know, like Winnie the Pooh… except I’m not a bear, and I’m not a cartoon, and I am not full of fluff… and I’m a poot, not a pooh. I thought I’d share with you some of my thoughts on life today! So here goes… Let’s take a walk together!

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1. Stop and enjoy the soda Daddy bought for you. On the first day of the week, Daddy often takes us children on a long walk to get a soda (and sometimes a cookie). Often on the return journey, I simply stop walking and enjoy my drink. Everyone else is so busy trying to be in front or climbing some tree that they miss the joy of the soda right in front of them. Daddy got me this drink and it is DELIGHTFUL! So I stop and take in the gift of delight that is in my hands. Take some time and enjoy the soda that you were given. Don’t be so worried about getting back to the house to work or put me down for a nap. Just stop, sip, enjoy.

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2. Cookies are best when shared! I think we were made to share. Jo-Bits and I often share a drink and cookie when Daddy takes us on walks. He’s great! As we enjoy the gifts our Daddy has given us, Jo-Bits makes sure that I have enough. Daddy often asks us, “why do you look at your neighbor’s plate?” The answer is always the same – “to see if they have enough.” As I sit with others and share the cookie my Daddy got me, I get to see the delight on their face. Together we savor the sweetness and joy of the treat, laughing as the mess increases and chocolate covers our fingers and faces. It is as if these gifts we have were given to us so that we may enjoy and delight in each other.IMG_5953

3. Be alert and enjoy the world around you. See this cat!? I named him, but I can’t remember what I named him so I’m going to call him, Cat. On our way home from the beaver’s place, this charming fellow sought to join in our merriment. I’m closer to the ground, so I saw him first. Oh, what a delight it was to see such a funny creature looking back at me! We talked about stuff and I laughed at the jokes he told that no one else could understand. He stretched and rolled around on the ground and I think he told me he wanted me to scratch his ears. Big people, who aren’t as close to the ground, forget to enjoy these moments when we can interact with nature. Every day we are afforded the opportunity to delight in the creation. Daddy calls it the poetry of life, but I think it is just a pretty cool cat. You should take some time and talk to a cat.

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4. When you’re walking on a wet road and it seems slippery, just reach up and hold Daddy’s hand. Sometimes, the road we walk is wet and muddy. Cars disregard the cute procession of children walking along the side of the road. My shoes sometimes get muddy and I need a little reassurance that the ground is not going to swallow me whole. So I reach up and grab daddy’s hand! His hands are strong and I can trust them to keep me steady. I sometimes forget He is walking beside me, but then when I need Him most, I reach up and there is His hand… it’s like He knows my anxious thoughts and how to care for them. So, when the road gets troublesome, grab on to Daddy’s hand.

IMG_59355. Sometimes you have to get close to the dirt to see the wonders! Have you ever stooped down to see the bugs in action? They are amazing! I’m closer to the ground so I see them easier, but even I have to get close sometimes. Bend down low and look close! Daddy says, “God put those there so we would see how much He cares about little things.” I think God put them there so I could be amazed! Sometimes the things low in the dirt are the most worthwhile things to look at. The littlest and most insignificant among us often offer us the most beautiful and best expressions of praise to God. Take time to get close to the dirt, that is where you will see God working the most.

IMG_59226. Don’t worry about the big bad telephone pole, Jo-Bits – the warrior is walking with us! I have a brother. He is brave and destroys those things that scare me. I saw a spider on the telephone pole and I was a little worried that it might eat my face off. Fortunately for me, Daddy brought along my big brother Jo-Bits! He leaped into action with his plastic tube (he called it a light-saber) and decimated the enemy. My brother and I also fight and argue sometimes. Daddy says that is a good thing, because “if they won’t argue with you when you’re wrong, they won’t stand up for you when you’re right.” You see, when we walk together, we can trust in the ones we walk with to stand up for us in times of trouble. Jo-Bits is sometimes difficult and makes me scream, but when there’s a scary spider or caterpillar, or ant, Jo-Bits is there!

4 Things I’d like to See Stop!

I live in Texas. As a result, I am surrounded by cultural Christianity. To be clear: what I am calling cultural Christianity is not true Christianity. Though some “cultural Christians” may be true believers, most are people who have been raised within a set of morals and principles that follow basic Judeo-Christian values. They are often people who either claim membership in a church or at one time did so. Whether or not their faith is genuine, often cultural Christians do not connect that faith to a sincere relationship with Jesus.

Contrast that with my high school experience in Maryland. There, I was surrounded by a vast array of belief structures and moral understandings. While I was attending a relatively solid, Bible-believing church and had a great Christian community, the world around me was quite different than the gun-carrying, conservative-libertarian Mecca in which I now reside. Maryland is home to some of the most liberal people in the world! But they are uniquely liberal. They are independently liberal and ferociously ideologues.

In this way, they are not much different than the people I live around (Ron Paul served as our Congressman/local Superhero for years.) It is this independent thinking that I admire in my two communities. I love the reality that neither group of friends has formed their ideas in a vacuum. I love that both groups have their own sources of media and both are willing to question the veracity of their own groups. I love that they are all open to honest discussion… most of the time.

Now that you understand my context a bit. I want to address something. I’m not sure how to address these things, but I have to say something. Forewarning: I do not like to talk about politics… most of the time I’ll just nod at your outrage and mumble about living in a sinful world. That said, here we go:

In the past year, there has been outcry and outrage about a myriad of heinous issues. Sexual harassment, political scandals, moral failings, denial of human dignities, and political posturing have come to the forefront in every sphere of media regardless of political leaning. There are some things that have bothered me about the rhetoric though.

  1. Stop claiming moral high-ground. If you’re espousing a political point of view, you don’t have moral high-ground. Politicians have never been bastions of morality. Even the saints of each party are wicked. Personally, I have a difficult time believing that politicians are capable of basic morality, but that’s just me. I want to remind you, you do not have the moral high-ground! If you’re a Democrat, it wasn’t that long ago that one of your heroes was using executive power to cheat on his wife. If you’re Republican, it wasn’t that long ago that one of your heroes was advocating torture. Videotapes, flying death drones, embezzlement, and hidden secrets are the norm! You shouldn’t be surprised! People are sinful and they continue to be sinful! Romans 3:10-18 states it well when it explains that “no one is righteous, not one seeks God!” Stop claiming to be moral… we’re not. Our nation is made up of sinful people who need to repent and trust in Jesus Christ.
  2. Stop pretending that the sins of famous people are so grievous while you practice the same sins secretly. Stand up against sexual sin, but do so with integrity! Sure, you may not sexually harass women in public, but do you watch movies that have graphic sex and incredible amounts of foul language or gratuitous violence? You cannot claim to stand up against sexual deviance and fill yourself with the filth that trains our society to be sexually deviant. Further, if you indulge in pornography, you’re doing the same, if not worse, than those who are currently involved in these scandals. It’s worse because you’re supporting an industry that trains people to view other people as objects to fulfill selfish sinful desires of lust. You’re part of the problem, don’t pretend you’re better just because you haven’t been caught. Romans 2 articulates this well explaining that you are guilty of the very same things for which you condemn others. You who condemn liars, do you lie? You who condemn pornographers, are you indulging in it as well? “You who boast in the [being good] dishonor God by [being wicked while claiming to be good]” (Romans 2:23).
  3. Stop using social media as your political grandstand. I don’t have much to say here beyond stop. It’s annoying. I want to see pictures of your life and posts about what is going on with you. I don’t care about Donald Trump or the Democrats. I care about you. I never thought I’d long for the day when you were posting pictures of your dinner. But alas… sin has corrupted even our ability to enjoy a good, poorly filtered, photo of a desert.
  4. Finally, Stop believing your sources of media. I know it is fun to jump on bandwagons and join in clever turns of phrases to defeat political opponents. We love to hear a witty bit of rhetoric and parrot that until the next one comes along. But in reality, we show ourselves to be foolish and unoriginal when we insist that these people don’t have a bias they are reporting from. Ignore them. Turn off the feed for a while and enjoy a snack. If you live near me, come over and I’ll make you coffee and a snack.

Cultivating Beauty

Creative-beauty is lost in much of modern culture. The world we live in seems not to appreciate creative-beauty. To be fair, many people appreciate that which is creative and new. New fashion trends, shiny gadgets, and varieties of new styles of décor flood our senses. The old world beauty is recycled to give us a new world trend. These trends speak to a desire that is latent in the soul of humanity. There is a deep need to create, to invent, to engage the senses with something more than what merely be spoken. The soul needs to create. The soul NEEDS to create… something… something beautiful.

God created mankind in His image.

Consider that for a moment.

The infinitely creative God created man in His own likeness. You and me…. We were made to be creative. Creative: You were created to create. You were made to make. Humanity was designed to design. You were made in the image of an infinitely creative God so that you could display His infinite creative power.

Further, God is beautiful. No… not just beautiful. He is beauty and He creates beauty. Consider the canvas of the sky, painted anew each dawn and dusk. Think about the beauty of the mountains or a beach… The majesty of the spaces on this earth that remain untouched by humanity. The creative-beauty of God’s hand shouts forth His glory in every corner of creation! We were created to love beauty. To engage the world with what is beautiful and to create beauty in all areas of life.

The trouble we face in our world is that beauty has been marred by a rejection of the one who created beauty. Humanity has rejected God and, in doing so, has rejected beauty. Enter the mission of Christianity: to bring grace to a world dead in sin. Part of extending grace into a world of sin is the restoration of creative-beauty.

From the beginning, God has commissioned His people to tend the garden of this world. Adam was commissioned to work the garden of Eden, Abraham was to bless the world around Him, The Hebrews were charged with keeping the law as a testimony to God’s character, the prophets were to stand as navigators in a world of chaos, and Christians are to work to engage in a dark world, making the surrounding culture beautiful by infusing it with the radical love and grace of Jesus Christ.IMG_3200

Christians ought to strive to make the world a better place by delighting in the character of God and cultivating beauty, thereby improving our surroundings with His love and grace. The life of a believer is markedly different from that of a non-believer. The life of a believer should lead us to live in such a way that the world around us is improved by our involvement. One simple way to do this is to strive to make your spaces more beautiful.

When these truths first began to lay hold of my own life, I was at a loss of where to start. It seemed logical to me to produce artwork. In my utilitarian and pragmatic manner, I designed logos for work (see above), drew sketches of family, displayed great artworks in my office. Then, through the influence of some incredible works by Edith Shaffer, Devi Titus, Makoto Fujimura, and a few others, my wife and I began to strive to cultivate beauty in our everyday spaces. It was difficult to tune our hearts to be creators of beautiful spaces. Difficult, but so much fun! We repainted walls, added plants in weird places, created artworks to display, put phrases on walls and Scriptures on pictures, and embraced a conscious effort to surround ourselves with beauty.IMG_3201

Now, my wife and I strive to cultivate beauty in our lives. On a surface level, that means literally making areas of our home more beautiful. Beauty refreshes the soul and engages the mind. It is our desire that, when someone comes into our home or sits on our porch, they would encounter beauty. We long for our home to be a place where people can be refreshed by grace and love in the context of a creative and beautiful environment. We’ve tried to infuse life into our surroundings and create beautiful spaces.

IMG_3215The results of our efforts are myriad. Our lives are truly peaceful and our home is a place of respite and grace where we strive to engage in life-giving grace to each other and the world around us. Our kids are learning to create beautiful spaces too. Our oldest loves to create centerpieces for small group. Here’s her latest:

IMG_3212Even our children have fun trying to create spaces for respite, like this one:IMG_3217

Cultivating beauty is awesome. Being creative is fun. Having beauty around you is fantastic.

So, I’d like to encourage you. Find ways to make your world more beautiful.IMG_3213 Enjoy and display God’s creative-beauty. In this post are just a few pictures of what my family has done in an attempt to cultivate beautiful spaces. Creating spaces for beauty to thrive does not completely fulfill the commission to cultivate beauty and grace in this world… but it is a start. Get to work.

Cultivating beauty by delighting in God’s character is one of the core values at Sovereign Grace Fellowship. We strive together to cultivate beauty in the world around us and improve our surroundings. If this resonates with you, come check our church out. We meet in Brazoria, Tx at the Brazoria Heritage Foundation, 10:30 am Sunday mornings. A map and more information can be found here: www.sgfbrazoria.org

6 Life-Lessons from Jo-Bits

jobitsanddaddyDaddy let Tooties compose one of these bloggy things. (here) So, I thought I should be allowed to compose such a work myself. So here are lessons from me, The Jo-Bitty! (aka, The Boy!)

RunRun. When there is nothing in your way and you have a straight path that is clear, run! Life rarely affords us the opportunity to run freely, unencumbered and unimpeded by circumstance or ability. Run when you see the opportunity. Finish the projects you’ve wanted to complete. Take the opportunity to race ahead with plans and efforts. Run! When there is a free and open path, run. Feeling the wind in your hair is amazing! Accomplishing tasks without deadlines is fun! Getting from point A to point B fast and free is exhilarating… When you’re able, run!

puddlesFind a good puddle to splash in. Find the place where you can jump in and make splashes! You old-people are far too concerned with getting water on your shoes or what others will think of your splash! Life is made for splashing! Puddles are made to splash. It is a still body of water that simply waits for your destructive force to splash in it. Make a splash! Get a little wet and laugh about it. When I jump in puddles next to my sister they squeal. They get some water on them and my splash bothers them a little bit. But, if I had never made the splash, they would have had an extremely boring walk. So make your splash! Jump in the puddles of this life and remember – your splash will make everyone else’s walk just a little more interesting. Splash splash splash!

PecanPickingDig in the dirt… you might find pecans! I live in south Texas. The trees here drop pecans every fall and we like to pick them. Mommy cooks with them, Daddy makes sugared pecans, and I like to eat them. The tricky thing about pecans is that they get pressed down into the dirt. You have to be willing to dig in the dirt to get the pecans. You have to get down on the ground and get a little messy. If you want to enjoy the pecans, you’ll get a little dirty picking them up.

Always be the knight! Be the hero of the story. Even if there is no story! Be the hero, save the day, be the good-guy. My sisters’ are always in danger! I am the knight! Sometimes I get confused and I hit my sisters… not a good idea. You see, God gave me hands to protect people. So I need to use those hands to take care of the people I love and to help those who cannot help themselves.

armor2When you go play, wear your armor! My big sisters and I go to a local playground a few times a week. We ride our bikes up there with mommy and daddy and we play. It’s fun. I keep my armor on while I play because I’m little and trip and fall sometimes. My armor makes me feel strong and protects me when I fall. It doesn’t block my sisters from wrestling with me or keep me from engaging the other kids on the playground, but it protects me when I fall. Daddy tells me I don’t have to keep my armor on, but I’m a knight! Knights wear armor because they are going to do things that are daring, and dangerous, and could hurt. I wear armor so I can do more, not to keep me from doing less. I build up my strength and protection so that I can be more daring and brave! Wear your armor and be daring!

JoBitsandTootiesTake care of the Tooties. I am the Jo-bitty and I have a little sister: Tooties [Toot-Tees]… perhaps you read her blog post! She’s a great writer. I love my Tooties, but she is small and doesn’t know everything yet. You have to be gentle with people who are little and don’t know better. Sometimes I forget to be gentle and Tooties cries. Sometimes I forget that she doesn’t know and my actions make her scream. (Then daddy talks in his big person voice and we all get sent to our beds). But sometimes I remember she is little and I’m big… that is when I sit with her and tell her I’m sorry. God made me to take care of smaller things. Tooties is smaller. I take care of her… when I remember. I show her the construction site and the bulldozers. I tell her stories and play games with her. I tell her she’s ok when she gets hurt. I take care of Tooties because Tooties is small.

I’m sure I could write more cool life-lessons, but it’s almost lunch time and I have to go make the macaroni and cheese. So… be good, buckle up, and wash behind your ears.

5 Lessons from Tooties

tooties6Hi, I’m Tooties! Daddy is alway writing these bloggy things, so I thought I’d try one!

Here are five lessons for you grown-up types!

 

  1. tooties4Leave your lovey laying around, that way you can stumble onto joy. I like to leave my lady-bug laying around the house. It is precious to me, so I take it everywhere I go. Sometimes I drop it on the floor and that is ok. Later, when I walk into the room, I’ll find it. Then I’ll be super stoked about finding my favorite thing in the world! You should try it. Leave loving things around you. Drop them in places that you frequent. They’ll be a source of joy when you come back to that space!
  2. Always carry a drink with you. tooties5Whenever I walk around I try to carry a drink. Something that refreshes me… even if it is not mine. You need refreshment in this life. As you go about your daily life, carry a drink… whatever that may be. Whatever it is that refreshes your soul, carry it with you and drink deeply in moments of need.
  3. When you fall down, you’ll be ok… Daddy’s right there. I’m small and unsure of my steps sometimes. I fall down and sometimes it hurts. But Daddy is HUGE and he doesn’t fall down!!! When I fall down, I know Daddy is right there and can easily pick me up. He loves me and he comforts me when I fall down. Isn’t great to know that The Father is there!?
  4. tooties2Yelling is a form of communication, but it is less effective than laughing, smiling, and pointing. All I wanted was the juice! Couldn’t they tell? I was yelling and grunting… I even did my best impression of a fish so they would make the connection that I needed liquid! As I was writhing on the floor yelling my best impression of a flounder out of water, it occurred to me, “they give me things quicker if I laugh and point.” Yelling and being angry communicates something, but it probably wont get you what you want. Smiling and pointing work much better.
  5. No matter what you loose, you’ll find something better soon. I lose stuff all the time! One second I’m waving it in the air, and the next it’s gone! tooties1It’s like someone magically removes it from my grasp while I’m distracted by something else. Whatever the reason for this mystery (Daddy), I know that I should not worry… in another moment I’m going to find something else to be excited about.

That’s all for now! Have a great day!!

Squeeze My Hand- Suffering pt. 3

squeezemyhandHer eyes filled with tears as she gripped my left-hand.

“Oh, I wish we were already on the ground!” she wept.

The take-off was a little bumpy, but not unusual. In the same manner as always, we lifted from the ground and immediately hit minor turbulence. The plane rocked and bumped a little left, then a little right as if finding its balance. My little girl silently whispered prayers for safety as she squeezed my left hand tighter.

A 7 year old should not be able to cause severe pain to a 35 year old man. Yet, my affliction is evident in my left hand. You see, I have scleroderma in my left foot and my left hand/arm. (pictured above) As a result, I only have about 75% mobility in my hand and it pretty much hurts all the time. Occasionally it will flair-up, turn a brighter color red, and my nerve endings will feel like they’re on fire if someone touches my hand or foot. This particular flight happened to be one of those times.

I know the anxiety my little girl deals with, she got it from me. Plane flights tend to heighten my already anxious state. While other people are able to sleep or think about plans for when they land, I find my mind drifting in and out of a state of panic thinking: “we’re all gonna die, God help!” and a state of extreme cynicism thinking: “If God intended me to fly through the air, I’d be a bird!” So when I see the tears in my daughters eyes and hear her pleas to be on the ground, it is not without sympathy. This anxiety can be crippling. Rational thought escapes us when we deal with anxiety. We must force ourselves to reason when we are anxious. No one can do it for us… no amount of information can stem the anxious feelings… when someone suffers anxiety, they must decide to reason through it. Sometimes that’s not possible.

So here I sit. My nerves on fire, in a state of internal panic, wishing I could comfort my little girl.

We hit more turbulence. She squeezes tighter. I lean down and say, “it’s alright baby, just squeeze daddy’s hand.”

Pain floods my arm… I wince, and tears begin to form in my eyes. I could not take away the anxious feeling my daughter struggled with. I couldn’t ease her fears with rational logic or profound thoughts of God. All I could do was let her squeeze my hand. This is what God does with me. In my own painful circumstances… He takes the pain on Himself, urging me to trust Him.

More turbulence… more squeezing.

In that moment I saw again the way Christ walks with us. Jesus does not merely walk next to you while you feel the pain. He has actually taken the pain on Himself. In His kindness, He has taken our pain upon Himself. Every pain and anxiety you suffer, He has walked through and is walking through with you. In those dark moments of the soul, feeling your every pain He urges you, “it’s alright… squeeze My hand.” No amount of pain is too great for Him.

You see, I held my daughter’s hand because I love her. The pain didn’t matter in that moment. In that moment all that mattered was her pain. Pain cannot trump the love I have for my child. Likewise, pain cannot overcome the love Christ has for you. Jesus went to the cross, bearing your every affliction and failure so that you could squeeze his hand, and now He walks through your pain with you! Pain in this world is bound to come, but you don’t have to walk through it alone. The Holy Spirit will comfort. Squeeze His hand.

It is when we recognize this reality as a community that we will start to see past our own pain to love others. You see, my pain in that flight was second to her anxiousness. She needed to squeeze my hand, unconsciously causing me pain. This is how we should love one another. In the church, we personify the love of Christ to one another. We squeeze each other’s hands, ignoring our own inconveniences. We offer up our time and resources to provide for each other in spite of our inability to bring resolution. We wade through the troubles and pains of life together no matter how painful our own suffering. So… learn to be squeezed by your community. In doing so, you will live a full life in the church.

I’m not always good at this. I still complain when someone else needs to squeeze my hand. I fail to love people well. But I have a group around me who let me squeeze their hands. (Romans 12:9-13)  Our church strives to embody the ideal of grace extended. If you do not have a community like this, we are working hard to build one where I live. Come join us at Sovereign Grace Fellowship in Brazoria at 10:30 Sunday mornings. We meet in the Brazoria Civic Center Conference room (the old elementary school.)  There is a map on the important documents tab at the top of this page.  We all have struggles, let’s walk through them together.

This is part 3 of a series. Part 1 is here Part 2 is here