Letters from home

img_1507We celebrated Valentine’s Day this past week.  My family did the normal things…preparing treats and cards for my son’s elementary school party, exchanging cards and- the best part- Hollianne’s baking.

My biggest surprise, however, came in the mail.

I arrived home after a long day at work and discovered a letter from my mom in the mailbox.  A hand-written letter that read:

“KS-  You have had my heart for 46+ years.  I think about you everyday and pray for you.  I appreciate your friendship and am so very thankful and blessed that you are my son.  God has been/is so good to us.  I love you- Mom”

I shouldn’t have been surprised.  Mom has told me that she loved me almost every day of my life.

But there’s something special about the written word that made this communication extra special.

I’ve got a family of writers.  I’ve got notes from mom tucked away from numerous periods of my life.

My dad is a letter-writer too.  He’s sent me letters for high school and college graduations, before my wedding day and to celebrate milestones in my marriage and career.  I cherish all of these.

We are called to encourage.

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing. I Thessalonians 5:11

Jesus was the ultimate encourager.  He lifted those who were hurting.  He provided hope for the lost.

And He still does today.

You never know when an encouraging word- or note- can lift the burden of another.  Just like my momma did on Valentine’s Day.

My prayer this weekend will focus on being more of an encourager.  Please pray for me to be more aware of how I can lift the burden of another.

And let me know how I can pray for you.

God bless.

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When you forget your pants

img_0751I’ve been preoccupied lately.  Too preoccupied, perhaps.

New job and new responsibilities.  Lots of commuting.  Long days and many new people to meet.  A schedule full of meetings, too.

I realized yesterday that I needed to pack for three consecutive days on the road.  While packing for the trip, I decided to return some phone calls.  Admittedly, I was distracted with the phone conversations and not focused on packing what I needed for my trip.

I got to the hotel late last night and realized that I didn’t have my shaving kit.  No toothbrush or toothpaste.  No razor.  Nothing.

I had also intended to finish up a Bible study during some quiet time at the hotel.  Nope.  I forgot my Bible too.

Finally- I realized that I had packed my new suit coat, but not the pants.  Yep, I had 1/2 a suit.  No tie either.

I didn’t have time to go purchase new dress slacks.  I would have to go with what I had in my suitcase…a mismatched suit coat and dress pants.

I drew lots of strange stares at the conference today, for sure.  If I were trying to make a fashion statement- it was an epic failure.

Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.  Colossians 3:2

Has this ever happened to you?  Trivial things fill our days and preoccupy our minds.  If we aren’t careful, we can get so busy that we take our eyes off of what’s truly important.  We have to stay focused.

Please pray for me to spend less time being “busy” – and more time focused on Jesus.

And let me know how to pray for you.

God bless.

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Level playing fields

Our boys are experiencing a special season- and they know it. 

JT is an eighth grade kicker, punter and safety for his middle school team.  Our 5th grader, Britton, is an offensive guard and defensive tackle for the same team. 

Britton normally wouldn’t be playing with JT’s team. After all, he’s still in elementary school. 

But his 5th grade team didn’t have enough players- so the middle school coach invited Britton to “play up” and practice with the older team. 

While Britton hasn’t played much, he’s learned a lot from the older players and the coaches. He’s gotten stronger, learned much more about the game and become more disciplined in his preparation.  

And it’s brought our boys closer. 

They talk about the games at the dinner table. In the car, they share jokes about things that happen at practices. 

Despite their age and skill differences- JT and Britton are sharing a common experience. 

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.”  Mark 16:15

Isn’t that how the Bible draws it up?  

No matter our background…no matter our experience…no matter our status- the love of Jesus and the promise for salvation is for everyone. We have a shared experience. 

There’s no preferential treatment. Everyone is free to accept the same level of love, comfort and redemption through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. 

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

We are all united through Jesus. Teammates. And we should teach, support and pray for one another during our time together on earth. 

Please let me know how I might pray for you this week. It would be my honor as your teammate. 

God bless. 

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