Monday, March 24, 2014

Your Name

We walked out of church yesterday and the pastor enthusiastically said to my daughter, "Good bye Faith!"
We hadn't walked more than two steps when Faith looked up at me and said, "I can't believe she remembered my name."

My iWitness...

What is it about our name?
Whenever we hear it called out in a crowd, our head will automatically turn.
Whenever our name is attached to the end of the phrase, "I love you...", our hearts burn with joy, security and love.
Whenever our name is used in conjunction with our middle and last name respectively we know our current standing just might be in jeopardy.
Who doesn't love the sound of their name?
Do you ever wonder if God calls you by name?
Have you every heard God say, "I love you (insert your name here)!"
Does your neck ever get sore from twisting this way and then that way because God has called your name so many times in showing you the beauty and wonder of His world?
"David, come look at the sunrise!
David, smell the bluebonnets!
David, witness the wonder of the love of your friends!
David, breathe deep the richness of my grace and unconditional love!
David, seize this opportunity to serve the people around you!
Goodnight David...
I love you David!"

The One who made me...
The One who made you...
We should never be surprised that God remembers our name.
The real question is, "How could He forget it?"

And that's my iWitness...
Laugh often and Fear not!

"Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine." (Isaiah 43. 1)

ps - Thank you Pastor Kat for remembering Faith's name. You made her day!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Trash or Treasure?

I am far from being "Green" but I do try to do my part by picking up litter when I do see it around the campus of which I work.
The other day I rushed out the front door of my 1926 built brick building on my way to chapel and noticed a scrap of paper awkwardly folded on the sidewalk. I ran right past it.
After chapel I retraced my steps across the quad and made my way up the front stairs to my office and lo and behold there sat that same piece of awkwardly folded paper.
I reached down, picked it up and got ready to throw it away in the appropriately placed trash receptacle. I paused momentarily as my curious mind wanted to know if there was anything written on the paper.
Sure enough...
On this piece of trash was printed a true treasure...

Prayer by Julian of Norwich
"Lord you know what I want. I fit is your will that I have it, or if it is not your will do not be displeased with my prayer, for I do not want anything that you do not want ."

My iWitness...

This faded treasure piece now sits on my desk and has become my daily prayer.
Julian Norwich has a fascinating story...check it out on Google.

I was blessed the other day by "pausing."
Had I not paused I would never have found the treasure that I thought was trash.

There's a lot of treasure to be found in our world.
So many times we make the quick decision that something is trash without pausing long enough to discover the treasure.

That is perhaps the greatest lesson I have learned over the years with some of the most bizarre people I have come across.
People who don't believe what I believe,
People who act differently than I act,
People who live differently than I live,
People who think differently than I think,
People who dress differently than I dress...

The list could go on and on.
When I have taken the time to pause, more times than not I strike gold!

Perhaps my prayer today in addition to Julian of Norwich's prayer is this...

"Oh Lord, please give the people that cross my path today enough time to pause to discover the treasure in me... And Oh Lord, please give me the time today to pause and discover the abundant treasure in others."

And that's my iWitness...
Laugh often and Fear not!

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field." (Matthew 13.44)

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Tonight Show

I grew up in Southern California on The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson.
The routine was typical.
Watch the 11:00 news on a TV that didn't even know what a remote control was.
At 11:30 continue watching the same station which meant you didn't have to get up and manually change the channel.
With its multi-colored curtains flowing the familiar booming voice of Ed McMahon would offer these two historic word - "Heeeeeeeeere's Johnny!"
From behind the curtain Johnny would appear. I always wondered, "Who pulls the curtain back for Johnny to walk through?"
For the next ten minutes we would sit as a family in complete silence only allowing the voice and image of Johnny Carson to fill our family room.

Six hundred seconds later the monologue came to a conclusion and off to bed I went.

The Tonight Show torch was soon passed to Jay Leno.

On Monday February 17, 2014 the Tonight Show Torch was once again passed on to none other than Jimmy Fallon.

Jimmy Fallon busted out on to the New York stage and did a fantastic job of introducing himself by revealing his age (39), his six month old daughter, his wife, where he was from and then he said something like this...

"My mom and dad are in the audience tonight... I hope they are proud of me..."

My iWitness...

My first thought leapt out of my brain, "What do you mean 'I hope they are proud of me'? You're the host of The Tonight Show! You just came off of a successful run as the host of The Late Show. You started out on Saturday Night Live and now 39 years into your life you are wondering on the debut of your hosting the most successful late night television program in history whether or not your parents are proud of you."

My heart sank...

He didn't know...

I have talked about this topic before but it bears worth repeating here...

As children who grow up to be adults...we need to know if our parents are proud of us.

If Jesus had to know, then we have to know!

 And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; 17 and behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.”  (Matthew 3. 16-17)

If you have never done it or even if you have done it a thousand times, let your children know that you are proud of them... that you are "well pleased" with them.

It just might make their day or perhaps even their life!

And that's my iWitness...
Laugh often and Fear not!