Wednesday, September 13, 2006

What Can You Do?

This week of remembering the events of 9/11/2001 has been accented with stories of heroes, as it should be. We need more heroes.

Men who care about their kids more than themselves are heroic. Moms who sacrifice their own desires for those of their husbands are heroic. Ministers who bravely and clearly declare truth for the sake of the gospel and the church when it is not popular are heroic. Teenagers who stand up and scream “No!” to moral compromise are heroic. Businessmen who operate with integrity and bosses who treat employees with dignity are heroic.

We watch Dr. Phil occasionally and one of the things that he often says to people is, “You need to be a hero for…” A hero is one who risks or sacrifices the self for the sake of someone else. The hero is one who covers you in a downpour, who steps in front of the assault, who throws you clear of the falling piano, who helps you grieve when that is all that can be done.

There is a group called Carbon Leaf that I want to recommend. My daughter Hope gave me their new CD, Love, Loss, Hope, Repeat. One song on the album is called, "Block of Wood," a song about a family that has fallen apart and he is just trying to be a hero. The chorus says,

“If the fire, if the flood
Burns the tree and thins the blood
If your tears don’t wanna dry

I can help you cry
Through the night
Through the night and day
I can’t take your pain away
But I can help you cry”

Peter, writing about our heroic Lord said this,
He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth. When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness;” (1 Peter 2:22-24).

Jesus the Christ left us an amazing example. You can be someone’s hero today. Sacrifice yourself for the sake of another, even if all you can do is help them cry.

telemicus out

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Many of you know that I turned 47 last week. It was uneventful in every way. I think 47 is a level spot on the side of the hill. It's really yet to be seen which side of the hill I'm on. I think we never know till our time is done... but I figure I gotta be closing in on half way. It seems odd that I would be rethinking my life and work at this age.

On that day they call my "birthday" I was attending a writers conference. It was a huge amount of information in a short period of time. I made a commitment to my family this past January 1st that I was going to use this year to make a decision about my life and work. This is what I've decided.

I am hoping that I will be able to use the balance of my life in the work of writing and speaking as a way of life and ministry. As most of you know, I have been writing since 1989, but have never tried to publish anything. I hope to change that this year. Since starting I've written 3 books, hundreds of devotionals, a few articles, one book for teens and a childrens book.

So at 47 it comes down to this... I have a lot still to learn and to say. If the Lord grants it, I would like to serve him in this way. For now, I hope you'll still stop by and join me here each week. Perhaps there will be something useful. Remember me in your prayers.

47... but leaning on 46.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Love the Lord - Part 4

Last Saturday, in the middle of the night, Rhonda screamed. Not a word, it was one of those terror filled girl screams. (Yes, living with Rhonda is an adventure.) I was standing on the floor before my eyes were open. She was crying and screaming, “Someone is in here.” I still couldn’t see anyone, but surmised that she had been dreaming. Crawling across the bed to where she was, I held her and told her that it was only me and no one else was there. We were both shaken. I realized that in that moment of chaos – I was prepared to fight.

I’m no fighter. I’ve never been hit and have never hit anyone. I don’t even think I’m tough. But if you try to harm someone that I love, you will find that I will do anything within my power to support, protect and defend them. (I’m sure you are the same.) Even now in America, people are divided about the Iraq war, but if a foreign army came to our shores, you would see a unity unimagined by our enemies. Love doesn’t sit back – it steps up. Love holds nothing back, but gives all that it has. Abraham Lincoln spoke to this when he wrote in the Gettysburg Address,

“It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion…” The question becomes, “In your love for Christ, would you give your last full measure of devotion?”

Jesus said that the greatest commandment is, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30).

To love God with all of your strength is to love him to the last drop of our blood. It is to fight the good fight. It is to finish the course, to keep the faith. It is to follow Christ, not at a distance, but in triumphs of ministry and the stoning of persecution. It is to deliver his message with power and boldness and to wrestle in prayer in cold lonely nights. It is to keep going when the Lord compels us and all others are saying we should rest. It is to rely on the strength of the Master when our strength is gone. It is to surrender even our weakness to be a conduit of God’s power. It is to obey Christ's royal law even to the point of death. To love God with all of your strength is to follow him to the cross, never relenting until eternity.

telemicus out