The glass is half full

Murphy’s law: “Anything that can go wrong, will….”
the motto of the Boy Scouts of American, “Be prepared….”
These 2 statements say volumes about the way people think. “Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.” Most marriages today have a prenuptual agreement dividing up everthing from retirement to drink coasters. People have gone from planning for old age to planning for disaster. Y2K is a PERFECT example.
About 90% of all you hear about in the news today is about the remnants of the 2 hurricanes. What about the heros who cut people out of their attics? What about all of the churches from states away who went and did nothing but hand out bottled water? I bet if Britney Spears was there handing out water with another half dressed girl, you would see it on every channel and every web site there is.
We automatically complain about the bad things and never reflect or never say anything about the good things in life.
This week, God showed me this in my life. I have recently met someone who has been a huge bright light in my life. She’s not like anyone I have ever dated and I am going out of my way to make sure I do things right this time. Well, after a couple of weeks of everything absolutely going better than expected, I got a very confusing email from her and I automatically thought the worst. All that I could think were “Well the ride has come to an end” and “this really sucks”. Then God reminded me, for 2 weeks, I had dated a really incredible girl. For 2 weeks, I walked on air because as I put it “a pretty girl in Villa Rica likes me and wants to go out with me….!!!!!” He reminded me that this was from him, just like the vine was to Jonah and just like Jonah, all I did was complain about what I had not even lost yet.
I changed my mindset. I turned it all over. I quit worrying about it. I even told someone, “if this is the end, then thanks be to God for a great 2 weeks.”
Then I got a phone call.
She explained that the email was not intended the way that I took it. That I had laid my cards out and she wanted to do the same. Then on the drive to meet her for dinner, God let me know that everything was going to be ok. We had the most incredible dinner with each other just talking about our relationship (man that sounds great). Afterwards, I went with her to her parents house and met more of her family. Sunday, I am going to dinner at her parents for her mom’s birthday.
The evening that I dreaded completely, turned out to be one of the best so far.

Dear God,
Once again, you have shown me how incredible you are. You create not one but 2 hurricanes in the gulf and completely destroy an entire area of the country, for what reason we dont know yet but we will, and yet you still have time to take care of my problems in little old dallas, ga. Help me to remember that You are in control and if I will just turn my problems over to You, and get out of Your way, everything will be better than expected. Help me to remember not only the vine that You give me, but also the shade I enjoy while under Your vine. Help me know that the glass that you have given me is not half empty or half full, its overflowing…….



….it’s in the game.

Life… has evolved. Today, we drive for hours to work at jobs we dont like. We have instant coffee, heat-em-and-eat-em meals in minutes, cell phones that show video and soon television. We have cable and satellite tv with over 500 channels, (and still nothing on). We have mp3 players that can store thousands of songs, entire albums (yes, albums. You remember, big black shiny things that had about 12 songs each on it that had a kewl static in the background when you played it.) We have movies on demand instead of going to the movie theaters. We have simulation games instead of board games. We have a speed limit that is greater than the ability most people have to drive a car safely and still we exceed even the posted limits.

So with all of these conveniences, why do we still not have time for the things that are important. Like family, friends, and last but certainly not the least, God?

Well, I have found the answer. After searching the globe over, or at least my part of the globe here in Dallas, the answer is simple.

Someone put too many buttons on the controller.

Like most people, my age, I grew up with an Atari 2600. Like life at that time, simple. You had a joystick and a fire button. You could move up or down, left or right. Simple.
Life was simple too. All that I had to do was get up in the morning, go to school, come home and play Atari. In the summer, I cut grass to make enough money just to put gas in my motorcycle but that was usually on weekends.
Around Jr. High, they came out with a Nintendo. Smaller joystick but it now had 4 buttons. So now you could still move the same way but you had more choices, like life. I was in the band so that took up more time, I was older so I took on more responsibilities but still life was easy. No bills, nothing to worry about.
And so on it went. The games got more complex just as life got more complex.
Today, the Atari is long since gone and my X box has 12 buttons and not one, but 2 joysticks. Days of no bills, no mortgage, no insurance, no 12 hr day at my job are long since gone.
I have all the conveniences of life, all the gadgets that I could ever use, and everything to make my life simpler.
Now someone just either has to make away to put more than 24 hrs in a day or a way to take 11 buttons of of my controller…..

Anyone for a good game of Space invaders?

Can you hear me now?

God speaks to us. He speaks to ALL of us. We may not hear him. We may not be listening and most of the time, I don’t take to heart what He is telling me. Most of the time, God speaks to me through music. He has told me more through a Third Day CD than I ever thought I would hear.
However, sometimes He speaks to us at the most unusual moments. For example, either driving down the road, stuck in traffic, at work during the most stressful moments. Its in His time, not ours.
Last night, I had the extreme idea to cut my grass right around sunset. Not that I really wanted to cut the grass in the dark, it was just a lot less humid and a lot less HOT to do it then. So while I am hot, sweaty and just walking behind the mower, I got some time to think. I know, a dangerous place for me to be. I just got to thinking why hasn’t God done this or this or this?
Almost INSTANTLY, God spoke up. He basically asked me why I am not seeking happiness in Him. Why am I not happy with the blessings that he has given me?
I realized that for the first time, maybe my search for someone in my life, has gone down the wrong road. Maybe I am not taking, as Robert Frost says, “the road less traveled.” Maybe I am doing the same thing over and over again trying to fix my life myself. I realized that I dont seek God first in everything that I do. I dont turn over my problems and situations to Him.
It also made me think about the blessings in my life that God has given me and how ungrateful I am. So today, I am thankful to God for what He has done and is going to do in my life. Today I am going to try and seek Him first in everything.

God, you have blessed me in so many ways. Nothing I could ever do would be worthy enough to thank you. So today, in my own way, here are just a few of the things in life that you have blessed me with that I am thankful for….
My family – I dont get to see them everyday but I know they are there if I need them. They are there if I just need to hear a friendly familiar voice and that they love me unconditionally.
A great childhood full of good memories – I look back on my life and realize what everyone said then is true. That truely was the time of my life and I would not know it until now. Now I know it and I have those incredible memories that no one can take away from me.
My life – I have a brand new home. I drive a brand new truck. I have every gadget I have ever wanted. I live in a great neighborhood and go to the most AWESOME church I have ever been to. I have a great job.
Blake and Emily – Even though they aren’t mine, there are no words to express what I feel when I drive up and they come running. To see the look on Emily’s face as she leaps into my arms or the joy Blake shows when he beats me at a video game, or either of them, just wanting to spend time with me is incredible.
For watching over me – Lets review my past….hit by a car, hand through window, put through car window, hand through a window AGAIN, divorce, living in ATLANTA, GA, diabetic coma, etc. I keep you on your toes just looking out for me.

But mostly, I am thankful for nails. The nails in Your Son’s hand and feet mean that this is only a stopping point in my life. When the first nail caused the first drop of blood to fall, my life was forever changed.
I may get stressed, I may worry, I may forget you are there. Help me to stop and know that You are.


Its finally here.
The weekend. The period of time where things slow down and I can get my head about me again.
Not this weekend. My phone rang off the hook with calls for work. I had ever tech out on a call except for two. I really get so mad now when I am trying just to get a minute to myself and the phone rings. Its to the point that I am considering having the phone WIRING removed from my house.
Im stressed beyond belief. I fly off the handle in the blink of an eye and all I want now is just some peace.
Saturday, I got up, changed the oil in my truck and when I went to drive it, I drove by the church where they were putting up the tent for VBS. So I stopped to see if they needed help and it must have been over 90 degrees outside and it was barely 11:00. I helped for a while until I had to leave and take care of calls for work.
Later that day, I met Dwayne for a few minutes just to talk and I laid out all my cards on the table. I told him of my frustration with God and unanswered prayers. I told him about being depressed about being alone, stress at work, the past few weeks. All of it. I laid it out there. We talked about things in his life getting him down and how he is pulling himself up. He said, in a nutshell, give it up to God. Let Him take it.
That is SO not me. I want everything to be perfect. I want everything to be right and I want to help make it that way if its not. I try to do everything myself and I cant. Regardless of how hard I try, I cant. I cant not alone that is. I need to let God move. I need Him to be in control, and right now, in my life, He isnt.
I didnt enjoy the messages at Westridge on joy. Now it seems those messages are coming back to haunt me. Mom told me to read Phillipians 4:13….

“13I can do everything through Him who gives me strength. ”

And todays message Dwayne led was on Phillipians 4:4-7

4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Maybe I need to go back and listen to those messages on joy…..

On a different note, the youth led worship this morning playing “King” by Tree 63 and “Yearn” by Shane and Shane. It was awesome!!!

Baby steps…..
One day, they will experience the worship that I have at 722, at Northpoint, at the Vineyard, at the Rock and now at Westridge. True worship where you are just absolutely pouring out your heart to God. Not worship as a chore you have to do when everyone pulls out the hymnal.

“And we will give You Glory
bring You Honor
King above all Kings
You deserve our everything
We will lift our voices
with Your praises
Jesus you are our King.” – “King – Tree 63”