The Wrong Side of the Storm

We are scattered by storms, and we are gathered by storms. Our storms may be physical or political, economic or spiritual. Sometimes, we are battered by a nasty confluence of all four. Whatever their nature, storms force us to move.

And Hurricane Sandy certainly moved us.

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Jesus Loves Whitney Houston

Whitney Houston is gone. But I remember when she was alive in my family’s kitchen.
As a boy, I was awestruck by the power of a Sony radio. My parents kept it high on a shelf, up next to all those red and yellow cookbooks and the potted green ivy.

Once I reached a certain age, I was allowed to touch the radio. My fingers stroked its walnut wood casing. I experimented with those clockwise and counterclockwise movements, exploring a world that went far beyond my small Indiana college town.

There, in the kitchen while helping my mom with the dishes, I heard a voice hit a frequency of celebration that only a soul lost and then found could reach.

Surrounded by the toil of clean and dirty dishes, I fell in love with The Voice.

Whitney Houston.

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Stretching a Prayer

This is my seventh hour in the classroom, and the sun surprises me, clearing up my coffee mug with fresh peppermint tea.

Today even the boys band together. They’re wearing pink t-shirts for a reason. Especially the basketball players. One sits at the back of my room. But he’s not reading, at least not like the others.

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Lord, I’m Listening to You, Too.

Lately, my wife and I have listened to problems fall down and stack up around us like walls of Lego blocks. So if we can’t see over them right now, could we at least listen to something different?

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The Smack of Loyalty

With a delicious Irish meat pie sitting on the table, my 4-year-old son looked across the same table and saw a chubby red rubber ball, 13 months his junior. Carefully, with a small elastic string, he tethered his brother to a hard, mischievous paddle.

“Jaaa-ames,” he pulled, “Me going to drink your miii-ilk.”

Smack.

“Jaaa-ames, me going to eat your craaa-kers.”

Smack.

As the “playful” paddling continued, each smack was met with a shrill, vile cry of defiance. Meanwhile, my half-full plate of food steamed in front of me, while a half-empty temper steamed inside of me. The noises were a bloody distraction from my meat and potatoes — like watching a battle unfold on the evening news during supper. Only this was worse — because I had to get involved.

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A New Vision Rises to the Surface

“If anyone serves Me, he must follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also; if anyone serves Me, the Father will honor him.” John 12:26

This verse gets my attention tonight. It makes me question where I’ve been, where I’ve spent my time today. Have I served my Lord today? Have I been standing and walking with Him? Did my footsteps walk in step with His. Did my vision follow His? Or did I just keep Him running in the background, like an application on my desktop, as I went about my business today?

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