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Showing posts from October, 2014

Friday Coffee with PJ

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It's that time of the week again. So go ahead and pour a cup of your favorite Joe. And as you enjoy it, think on these random thoughts.

1. Kaci Hickox is a nurse. But she is not just any nurse. She just may be the most talked about nurse in America right now. If her name doesn't ring a bell let me remind you of who she is. She recently spent time in West Africa treating Ebola patients. Upon arrival back in the states, she was placed in a tent under quarantine for three days at the Newark airport. During that time she went on record as believing her constitutional rights were being violated. Since being released from that quarantine, she has returned to her home in Maine. She is under orders to remain at home. But in a newscast which I saw Wednesday evening, she made it clear in no uncertain terms that she had no intentions of doing so. Even as I am writing this blog post, I just saw an Internet report that she left her home this morning to take a bicycle ride. Now… I am no he…

Maneuvering a Big Load

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This morning I watched an extra long 18 wheeler back up and turn around. As the truck drove on its way, I just shook my head and chuckled as I tried to imagine myself at the wheel doing the same. Never happen. I can't even back up and turn my little Nissan around without working up a sweat!

Life is a lot like this. We all have to maneuver big loads at times. The load might consist of health issues (hmm ... I can relate to that one!), financial pressure, relational conflicts ... and the list goes on and on. But always remember ... no matter the load, no matter how big, you do NOT have to carry it alone. God in the person of the Holy Spirit is your constant companion (John 14:16-17), and his shoulders are much broader than yours! So allow him to help you carry whatever it is that is loading you down. Life will be hard at times ... but God will always be good (Psalm 23:6)!

Thanks for stopping by . . .
pj

Friday coffee with PJ

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I've already enjoyed 2 cups of my favorite brew, and I am considering a third. And it's only 8:00 in the morning. This morning's post will be brief, as I am still moving quite slow as result of my recovery from my surgery five weeks ago. I would appreciate your prayers as I return to the orthopedic surgeon next Tuesday, and then walk across the hall to see the physical therapist. My therapy is supposed to begin "in earnest" this upcoming week (gulp!).

1. One of the keys to personal evangelism is relationship. As one writer states, "Evangelism for most Christians comes, not out of giftedness, but out of relationship." The first key relationship is that of a dynamic relationship with Jesus Christ. We don't begin to "fish" until we first follow Jesus (Matthew 4:19). The second relationship that has huge implications for evangelism is involvement in a personal way with people who don't know Christ. One look at Jesus and how he related to …

Be Real!

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The other day as my wife (a.k.a. "Grammy") was watching our 2 1/2-year-old granddaughter, Molly. She approached my wife and said, "let's play!" She then went on and said "let's be real." What she was trying to communicate was that whatever she had on her mind to play, she didn't want to just pretend. She wanted to "be real!"

That's good advice for all of us who claim to follow Jesus. We need to be real. Too many of us wear masks which hide the real us from those we encounter. We do so for a variety of reasons. Sometimes we are ashamed for people to see us for who we really are. At other times we want to impress people and so we pretend to be something that we are not. But what people really need to see is that we are real people. We have real problems, real struggles, real ups and real downs. Yet in the midst of all of that "realness," they need to see our real relationship with Jesus Christ. So… How is your relationsh…

Friday Coffee with PJ

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Thanks for stopping by for today's edition of Friday coffee with PJ!

1. Sometimes when I watch the national news on television, or read Internet news reports, I sometimes get the feeling that the media doesn't merely report the news, but in reality makes the news. The hype that is placed upon local and world events can be sometimes overwhelming. Everything is a crisis. And major steps must be taken before tragic consequences ensue. Now, I don't mean to minimize the severity of some of the events going on in our world today. Ebola. The advancement of ISIS. The weakness of the global economy. And the list could go on and on. These are things that we do need to be concerned about. But, we don't have to go into panic mode over them. When I read my Bible, I see that God is sovereign. He is Lord over all. That means all of these things I just mentioned (and the many more that I did not). As the sovereign God (Ephesians 1:19) he has a plan for us and our world. And in some i…

The Posture of True Strength

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In one of the many blogs that I read during the week, I ran across the following quote that really got  me thinking: "You and I are only truly living to the degree that we surrender our lives to Jesus. . . . We often associate humility with weakness when in reality declaring our weakness before an Almighty God is the only posture of strength we can take" (Graig Denison). 

I am thinking that Craig may have had the apostle Paul's words in 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 in mind. Or perhaps he was thinking of 1 Peter 5:5-6....or maybe something Isaiah the prophet said in Isaiah 57:15. The point I'm trying to make is this: What Denison wrote about the true posture of strength is consistent with what God tells us in his word. True strength comes our way only as we own up to our weakness and turn to the one who is the pillar of strength. How about you? Are you surrendering yourself to Jesus Christ today? Are you leaning on his strength, realizing that any strength you can conjure up…

Friday coffee with PJ

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Well it's that time again to pour yourself a cup of your favorite coffee and join me for just a few random type thoughts.

1.  I don't know about you, but I find myself so much more prone to grumble, gripe, and complain than I am to be thankful. Yet I have much more to be thankful for in my life than to complain about. And why is that? The Scripture is clear. The only thing I deserve in life is the judgment of God. I was born a rebel. I continue to sin. And therefore, I deserve God's judgment. However, in his grace and mercy, God has judged my sin and rebellion through the death of his son Jesus Christ! So now I do not have to fear ever facing God's wrath for my sin because Jesus already did so! In addition, God graces me every single day. He gives me life, health, a home, family, sight, hearing, and the list goes on and on and on! The Thanksgiving holiday is a mere seven weeks from today. But let's not wait till Thanksgiving to begin cultivating a thankful heart. …

A Change in Wardrobe

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Yesterday was my day off. It was also an "errand" day. Leaving the house about 10:45 in the morning, my wife and I were out and about until we arrived home close to 5pm. Our stops included the physical therapist, the bank, Walmart, Cracker Barrel (for a good old-fashioned lunch at a good old-fashioned price), the Mennonite home (where my mother-in-law resides), and Boscovs department store at the mall. All in all it was a very busy and very productive day!

Now our stops at Walmart and Boscov's were somewhat related. I have had to do a wardrobe readjustment these past couple of weeks. With first a cast and now a brace on my left arm, I have had to alter some t-shirts and sweatshirts to be able to get them on. So the stop at Walmart was to buy an extra large fleece (one which I could more easily pull over my brace) so I could stay warm in these cooler October temperatures. The Boscov stop, enabled me to pick up some very affordable T-shirts and sweatshirts to replace the a…

Pain with a Purpose

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Yesterday I had my postop visit with my surgeon. A nurse first removed the cast and the stitches. Everything looked good. Even the surgeons initials which he wrote on my forearm with a purple marker were still visible. Up until yesterday, I really hadn't experienced a whole lot of pain. In fact, the doctor was a bit surprised that I did not take more pain med then I did. So I guess I have something to really be thankful for! However, once the cast was off and they fitted me with my new brace, I started having some pain. And the pain continued off and on throughout the rest of the day and even into this morning. Since I have quite a bit of physical therapy to go through, I'm going to guess that pain will be a rather constant if not welcomed companion of mine for the foreseeable future.

But that's not a bad thing. For starters, I have to get through the pain to find the healing that my arm needs. In addition, God uses pain in our life to refine us and to conform us to the i…