Purging

So today I came into my office with express focus to purge.

I’m not a good purger.  In fact I have this uncanny ability to find “forever value” in the strangest things.  I think Chachki is the word I’m looking for.  Candles that I might one day light.  A trinket that has some weird sentimental value.  A drawing from one of my kids.  A book I might read.  CDs… our home doesn’t even own a CD player anymore!

So today is the day.  And I’m doing ok, but as you can see, now I’m distracted.  And distraction I believe, is one of the enemy’s greatest tools.

Have you found yourself reading scripture, or spending time trying to “Be Still and Know…” only to have a list formulating in your mind of the things you need to do and people you need to speak to?  I sure have.  How do we overcome such distraction?  Practice.  The more time you spend with God, the more focused you’ll become.  Similar to getting got at an instrument, or a craft, it’s all in the time you put in.

For me distractions abound, and that in combination with all the stuff I keep – it would seem that distractions are endless.  So today I purge.  Several trips to the dumpster and recycle box later and I feel good.  Looking around my room, I know I have a long way to go, but we work in small steps and practice.

Free yourself from distractions and stuff – purge them both!

 

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Choosing to Love…

Read a great story today that I’d like to pass along.

I do believe its what the world is missing right now as a focused, “fix it” attitude to relationships rather than a “discard and replace what’s not working” attitude.

Just my opinion.

Love Attributes AGED

ARE YOU WITH THE RIGHT PARTNER?
During a seminar, a woman asked,” How do I know if I am with the right person?”
The author then noticed that there was a man sitting next to her so he said, “It depends. Is that your partner?” In all seriousness, she answered “How do you know?” Let me answer this question because the chances are good that it’s weighing on your mind
replied the author.

Here’s the answer.
Every relationship has a cycle… In the beginning; you
fall in love with your partner. You anticipate their calls,
want their touch, and like their idiosyncrasies. Falling in love wasn’t hard. In fact, it was a completely natural and spontaneous experience. You didn’t have to DO anything. That’s why it’s called “falling” in love.

People in love sometimes say, “I was swept of my feet.”Picture the expression. It implies that you were just standing there; doing nothing, and then something happened TO YOU.

Falling in love is a passive and spontaneous experience. But after a few months or years of being together, the euphoria of love fades. It’s a natural cycle of EVERY relationship.

Slowly but surely, phone calls become a bother (if they come at all), touch is not always welcome (when it happens), and your spouse’s idiosyncrasies, instead of being cute, drive you nuts. The symptoms of this stage vary with every relationship; you will notice a dramatic difference between the initial stage when you were in love and a much duller or even angry subsequent stage.

At this point, you and/or your partner might start asking, “Am I with the right person?” And as you reflect on the euphoria of the love you once had, you
may begin to desire that experience with someone
else. This is when relationships breakdown.

The key to succeeding in a relationship is not finding the right person; it’s learning to love the person you found.

People blame their partners for their unhappiness and look outside for fulfillment. Extramarital fulfillment comes in all shapes and sizes.

Infidelity is the most common. But sometimes people turn to work, school, a hobby, friendship, excessive TV, or abusive substances. But the answer to this dilemma does NOT lie outside your relationship. It lies within it.

I’m not saying that you couldn’t fall in love with someone else. You could. And TEMPORARILY you’d feel better. But you’d be in the same situation a few years later.

Because (listen carefully to this):

The key to succeeding in a Relationship is not finding the right person; it’s learning to love the Person you found.
SUSTAINING love is not a passive or spontaneous experience. You have to work on it day in and day out. It takes time, effort, and energy. And most importantly, it demands WISDOM. You have to know WHAT TO DO to make it work. Make no mistake about it.

Love is NOT a mystery. There are specific things you can do (with or without your partner), Just as there are physical laws of the universe (such as gravity), there are also laws for relationships. If you know how to apply these laws, the results are predictable.

Love is therefore a “decision”. Not just a feeling.

Remember this always: God determines who walks into your life. It is up to you to decide who you let walk away, who you let stay, and who you refuse to let GO

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Over a year?

hey all,

how did this happen, that it’s been a year since i “blogged”?

Not sure how this did not make a priority, or if it ever will, but those who know me – I do have quite a few opinions and some ridiculous things that go on in my life worthy of blogging again… so perhaps I will.

For example, Easter weekend just passed by and we had a GREAT time at Eastview remembering and celebrating the death and resurrection of our Savior – Jesus Christ.  If you made it to our church or another over the Easter weekend, I hope you were blessed and immersed in the story of Jesus.  If not, or are missing part of the story, check out the book of John or Luke in the Bible.  It’ll only take you an hour i bet to read through Jesus’ life – birth, life, ministry, death and… the cool secret ending 🙂

Have a great day everyone – and I look forward to seeing you around.

in the meantime you can check me out on facebook or twitter @snrdick1

shalom

SteveImage

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Official Worship Signals

This past weekend a good friend passed along something that I thought was initially hilarious – but then upon closer inspection I had a “moment”.

As a worship leader, I am often pushing / pulling / encouraging / motivating our congregation to “worship God fully” – in an  ‘expert’ sort of way (see the attached pdf for reference)  It has little to do with our hands however, but the WORSHIP GOD FULLY idea is that with your whole self, you give yourself to God in Worship – with your voice, with your prayers, with your silence, with your service, with your love for your spouse, kids, neighbours, strangers… you get the idea.

So, metaphorically speaking – am I simply a Rookie carrying a TV (again, see the reference) –  or a Mufasa Intermediate, a Heartburn Pro… or am I a Rocky Pro?

Not only in my singing-worship, but my life.  I believe my goal for myself and the goal I would ask you to pursue is move from one category to the next.  Isn’t God worthy of it?

so – let’s have a bit of a laugh… but consider this a metaphor for our Worship of God as well shall we?

Official Worship Signals

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Wouldn’t God Shine Through?

As a daily lift, or encouragement – for years I’ve subscribed to something called “Mikey’s Funnies” – church related, spirituality related humour… and other stuff.

Today however the one I got, not only gave me a giggle, but a pause to consider – to which I share openly this day:

This is a story about a little girl who, on the way home from church, turned to her mother and said, “Mommy, the Preacher’s sermon this morning confused me.”

The mother said, “Oh! Why is that?”
The girl replied, “Well, he said that God is bigger than we are. Is that true?”
“Yes, that’s true,” the mother replied.
“He also said that God lives within us. Is that true, too?”
Again the mother replied, “Yes.”
“Well,” said the girl. “If God is bigger than us and He lives in us, wouldn’t He show through?”

Huh.

How do you feel about that?

Have you ever looked around at the “Christians” in our world, only to wonder what obvious, outward expression would lead me to believe that they are who they say they are – or that they actually follow the person that they say they follow?

But far be it from us -and me for that matter- to point fingers at anyone for not FULLY living an expressive life for Jesus!  Don’t I do the same thing?  Say that God is big, say that God lives in me – and I should wonder at the words of this little girl, do people see Him in me?

Food for thought – for myself today – and for all of us.

If our God is BIG.  If our God LIVES in US.  Can other’s see Him?

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Lent Begins… giving up facebook and gaining community

After spending much time encouraging others to consider a Lent-en activity… all I could come up with is giving up Facebook.  huh.

I know this may seem insignificant to many, even my family – big deal dad – but for me it’s a move into a more positive direction.  Unlike other social medias like Twitter, where you try to get your thoughts out there to the world… I really think Facebook is a tool of connecting with people – in sort of a false economy way of connecting.

If you connect with people – friends, family via facebook only does that count as connecting?  I suppose it can. I have nothing really negative to say about that, but rather, is there another way?  Is there something I can do to move deeper into community than just “liking” someone’s status update?

Remember phone calls?  Remember driving across town to go for coffee, or pop in for a visit?  Remember writing letters… and putting them in the mail?

So is facebook the thing for me, or is it a symptom of something greater?  For me it’s a baby step – a step in the direction of community.  That I will move from simply liking a status, commenting on a photo, leaving a wall post – towards something greater, deeper, more significant.  An investment.

This may be the greater sacrifice than just “giving up facebook”… but isn’t that what LENT is about?  Remembering the sacrifice?  If I can’t focus on sacrifice, by sacrificing even a little… I don’t know… food for thought I suppose.

I have this thing far from figured out.  But I DO know that with the advancement of social media, facebook and the like, my world has shrunk a bit in the significant conversations – intimate conversations – caring conversations…

What about you?

in the meantime – have a listen to a great new song by Matt Redman called 10,000 Reasons:

10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)

Chorus 1

Bless the Lord O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name

Verse 1

The sun comes up it’s a new day dawning
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes

Verse 2

You’re rich in love and You’re slow to anger
Your name is great and Your heart is kind
For all Your goodness I will keep on singing
Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find

Verse 3

And on that day when my strength is failing
The end draws near and my time has come
Still my soul will sing Your praise unending
Ten thousand years and then forevermore

Misc 1

(ENDING)
Worship Your holy name
Lord I’ll worship Your holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
Worship Your holy name
Worship Your holy name

CCLI Song No. 6016351
© 2011 Thankyou Music | Said And Done Music | sixsteps Music | SHOUT! Music Publishing | worshiptogether.com songs (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing) | (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing) | (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing) | (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing) | (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)
Jonas Myrin | Matt Redman
For use solely with the SongSelect Terms of Use. All rights Reserved. http://www.ccli.com
CCLI License No. 252125
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Art in Worship

This is a bold first post – as I’ve never posted anything before, but was eager to share with you the insight I received today from a friend.  Below are Robert Webber’s thoughts on art in and for worship.  Good food for thought as we consider all the things we place into worship services and what we hope to gain or accomplish through worship services.

peace.

 

To insist that art is necessary for worship is to commit aesthetic heresy. Such insistence makes art an idol, an object of our worship. On the other hand, to insist that art is a hindrance to worship is equally dangerous. It denies that the material creation is a worthy vehicle through which God can communicate to us, and we to him.

Robert Webber, Worship Is a Verb: Celebrating God’s Mighty Deeds of Salvation 

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