Sep 272015
 

hang in thereWhew! Last week at work was one of my roughest in quite a while! I know that it was a difficult one for many of my coworkers as well. It would take more than one hand to count my failures this last week.

A couple of the biggest…failing to timely recognize two of our coworkers who transferred out of our laboratory family to other opportunities that are better matches for their needs at this time.  I am so thankful to both of you for the time we were able to spend together.

When we go through difficult times, it’s easy to get distracted and forget the important things, letting the short term circumstances drag us down. It’s hard to hang in there until I remember at least these three things:

One. I am blessed and happy to be where I am because I am where I am supposed to be right now.

The very steps we take come from God; otherwise how would we know where we’re going? Proverbs 20:24 The Message

Two. I am fortunate to be surrounded by great people. From my boss, whom I trust and respect, to my fellow leaders, to my coworkers in the lab who serve with excellence and help me laugh at least once each day!

Three. I see good happening every day. Sometimes through my doing. More often, through the work of those serving alongside me. It’s far better for me to celebrate all these things than to allow a relatively small number of things change the color of the entire week.

Yes. Right place, Right people. Right things happening!

For those of you who catch me in a down moment, remind me to hang in there! If you’ve joined me by having periods of discouragement recently, hang in there! Things like this don’t define us or our success. God is not surprised by the boulders in our path. Taking a longer view reminds us that in relation to the journey, the boulders are just pebbles. Celebrate the fact that the journey is headed to the right destination!

Sep 112015
 

9 11 facebook timeline cover banner for fb in memory of twin towers sept 11 2001 facebook cover photo

Fourteen years ago. Do you remember where you were? I was standing a few feet from a portable radio in the laboratory just outside of the Emergency Room at Tennessee Christian Medical Center. While the hospital is no longer as it was, I have strong memories of that morning. I remember calling for hospital staff to meet in the chapel. I remember bowing at the front of the darkened room, begging God for a message to encourage and strengthen. I remember, minutes later, speaking to a full chapel, the huge display bible open in my hands, sharing the message of Moses at the Red Sea. When trapped between the sea and Pharaoh’s army, he spoke:

Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. Exodus 14:13 NIV

Just like I knew then that the message I spoke was not from any thought of my own, I know now that my God does not want His people to fear. The terrorists on that day hoped to instill a spirit of fear in America. They were physical instruments of the evil one, just as he continues to plague us with a spirit of fear in our hearts now.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 1 Timothy 1:7 NKJV

A spirit of fear darkens the spirit of the young father who just lost his job. A spirit of fear of failure weakens the intellect of the brilliant high school student, her ability masked by it. A spirit of fear clouds the mind of the elderly woman feeling the end is near, not sure of her future.

I know that  the future of this great country does not lay with its people cowering from an evil power. I don’t know about you, but I know that my God has no interest in me living my life in a spirit of fear, frightened of what my life on earth will bring and uncertain of my salvation.

I believe in America. Even though we make shockingly poor decisions, about our government and as a society. I know that as long as we refuse to accept the spirit of fear and move forward, working hard and doing right by those around us, we can prevail.

I believe in my salvation through Jesus Christ. Even though I often neglect Him, even though I make shockingly poor decisions and disappoint Him often, I know that He wants to remove my spirit of fear and replace it with power to do right, love to care for those in my reach, and a sound mind to think and act in ways that please Him.

Sep 052015
 

I take care of my ownA flash of anger crosses the father’s face as he cuts off a relative’s cutting comment about his treasured teen daughter. He lifts her to her feet and walks proudly arm in arm with her across the restaurant floor, sheltering her from hurt and discouragement.

  I take care of my own.

 

The young girl persistently tugs her toddler sister’s arm, pulling her away from a danger only the older sister can see. The snake slithers slowly by.

I take care of my own.

A black and white mare charges a group of larger horses intent on nipping at her young foal.

I take care of my own.

A young single mom gets into trouble over the weekend. Rather than shunning and allowing her job to be in jeopardy, her supervisors circle around her, vowing to protect her from hurtful comments and giving her the time to heal.

I take care of my own.

Satan stands in heaven. “You have this so-called law. Your people can’t even keep it. As I’ve said, you’re government doesn’t work!

Jesus slowly stands to His feet. He turns and gently lays His crown on His throne. Rolling up His sleeves, He flexes His powerful biceps. The shadow of a cross flashes across the throne. Turning toward the world He created, a small smile crosses His face. “Watch this!”

I take care of My own!

Whether a colleague in trouble, a daughter in tears, a niece bowed down in embarrassment and hurt, a husband attacked by vicious coworkers, when you rally around someone within your circle of responsibility, fiercely protective, lavishly caring, vigorously defending, generously giving, you are modeling Jesus’ love for you and those around you. Without realizing it, you honor and please Him by copying His fierce, lavish, vigorous, generous love.

Look to your family, your close friends, your employees. Don’t flinch. Don’t think twice. Proudly dive headlong with words and acts to protect and care for those who have been entrusted to you.

Take care of your own!

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