Monday, April 27, 2015

Lightning Strikes...

As many of you...I jolted out of bed on Saturday am by some serious thunder and lightning.
A neighbor to the church was also woken up early by the storm and captured this at 4:30.
"When Morning came, there was thunder and lightning, a thick cloud on the mountain, and a loud trumpet sound, so that all the people in the camp shuddered." ~Exodus 19:16

The power of God in this photo floored me. 
It's mind boggling to me that we are so small and yet so important to Him.

"He causes the clouds to rise from the ends of the earth. He makes lightning for the rain and brings the wind from His Storehouses." 
~Psalm 135:7

Our God is big.

"Then The Lord will appear over them, and His Arrow will fly like Lighting."
- Zechariah 9:14a

Our God is Powerful.

"From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and thunder." 
~Revelation 4:5a

Our God is Present.

"For as the lightning flashes from horizon to horizon and lights up the sky, 
so The Son of Man will be in His Day." 
~Luke 17:24

Our God is coming back.

God, Thank You for showing Yourself to us.

In His Dust,

Monday, April 20, 2015

Just Dance...

Crocker's sermon yesterday was about Uptown Funk and Prayer.

Yes, it was.

He found himself on a dance floor, when a flash mob broke out. 
Not knowing "the" dance, he didn't leave the floor...he did his own.
He went rogue.

That's how prayer is.
You can follow a pattern....or do your own dance.
There is NOT a wrong way...or a secret formula to "get what you want"

It is not rare to hear someone call the church and say,
"since you have a direct line to God, can y'all pray for...."

That question always makes me sad.
I want us all to know that we have the same direct line...
It doesn't matter where we work, how often we go to church or which "dance" we do...
When we talk to God we are all on equal footing.
"The Lord is near to all them that call on Him." - Psalm 145:18
This little girl has the same access to The Throne as the Pope or Billy Graham.
That includes you. And me.
Proof of purchase is found at The Empty Tomb.
Which, by the way, 
It is STILL very empty.

"Pray without ceasing"- 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Your line to God is as clear as a you would like for it to be.

God, Thank You for opportunity to Dance with You....

In His Dust,

Monday, April 6, 2015

Nobody's Cuter Than You....

I'm not a big reader. 
I never have been.
Odds are strong I might not ever be. 
However, when Melanie Shankle writes a book. I read it. 
Apparently, so do several others, as evidenced by her being a New York Times Best Selling Author. Not once, but Twice. 
I suspect strongly, after the newest one releases today, April 7th...
we just might find ourselves in the presence of a THREE timer. 

Her newest book, "Nobody's Cuter Than You" A memoir about the beauty of friendship, releases today----you can buy it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Walmart...among other places.

In this book, she has written about one of my favorite subjects and two of my favorite people.
Herself and Gulley...their friendship and the beauty of all friendships. 

I have had the privilege of front row seats to the "Mel & Gulley Show" for several years. 
I've seen backstage...and on stage...I've seen celebrations and heartbreak, I've seen tense moments and possible pants-wetting laughter...
One thing never changes, it's always the same....they are True Blue.
They are tender, kind and funny. 

My friend Nancy has always referred to good trusty friends as, "bluetick hounds." 
Blue tick hounds are affectionate, loyal and uniformly devoted. They become like family members. I have been very blessed, to have multiple "blue ticks" in my life....and while reading this book I was able to walk down my own memory lane, as will you. 

This book provides a chance to reflect, to forgive, to howl with laughter and most importantly, remind you to soak up the very friends you have right in front of you.

Melanie Shankle is a humble, brave and very funny writer. She really puts herself out there. She invites her readers, not only to her memory lane, but to recall their own.  

I can't wait for you to read this book and take your own journey down memory lane. 
Within these pages, I found wise counsel, Biblical truth and may or may not have spit out my Diet Coke at some of the stories. 
The stories on these pages are true, tender, funny and Biblical. 
Just like my friend Mel.
God, Thank You for the friends you have poured in to my life....for how You have used them to bring love and laughter to me. My Cup runneth over with how well you have filled my life with friendship.
In His Dust,

Sunday, April 5, 2015

He's Surely Alive....

The extremely, heavily-guarded tomb of a dead man....
was suddenly very empty.

I recently spoke with someone of another faith...he said- 
"I believe Jesus was great man...and I might even be able to believe He was The Son of God....but you definitely lose me at an empty tomb.There's just no way."

I get that. It is hard for me to wrap my head around this amazing story.....
However....that doesn't make it any less true.
There is a Way...His Name is Jesus.

The earliest documents found said,
“Once inside, they couldn't find the body of the Master Jesus”-Luke 24:3 
Enemies and non-believers of Jesus also confirmed he was gone.

As of today April 5, 2015...His Body has not been found.
However, The Risen Christ, Jesus sure has.

It is reported in early documents and Scripture, that there were at least 500 people who had seen Him, and most were still alive when those claims were made. 
Now, I don't know about you...but I'm doubtful I could gather up 500 people, to prove they had seen me walking around here lately. That is a lot of people.

“Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive." ~1 Corinthians 15:6

All of this could have been easily disproved....but it wasn't.
Why not? 
Because the tomb was empty....Jesus was alive!

So, Happy Easter...Happy Resurrection Sunday...Happy Day that proves once again...
He is worthy to be praised....and in EVERYTHING.
What can keep us chained?
What can steal us hope?
What can be against you?
What can stop Him?
What can separate us from the love of God?

As my little buddy Charlie says, "Nuffin." 
That's the Very Same "Nuffin'" that was found in the tomb that First Easter Morning.

Thank You God, Thank You.

In His Resurrected Dust,

Friday, April 3, 2015

Good Friday...

We've been discussing what happened on Good Friday.....
how God "looked away" from Jesus...what that must have felt like....
How He could do it....Why He would do it.
How was Mary able to keep breathing? 

Can you imagine?

Don't some days, weeks or even years, feel like every time you check your phone there is message from a friend...or friend of a friend...
with a terminal diagnosis...or a tragic freak accident....
a second occurrence, with a vengeance...incredibly vibrant lives of faithful believers....
an innocent child left behind...parents living their lives without their sons or daughters....young spouses left to live alone...children born with special needs...
Doesn't look fair does it?

It's not.

Neither was that Friday at Golgotha.
It was dark and frustrating and confusing...
And not fair.
There didn't seem to be any signs of hope left. 
There certainly didn't seem to be any sense to be made of Innocent Jesus, 
The Very Son Of God- being spit upon, mocked and tortured.
What occurred here was hideous...disfiguring...not comprehensible.
At this moment....there was no Easter Sunday...
at least that human eyes could see or imagine. 

For all the days when it feels like Sunday is NEVER coming....
things can NEVER be made right....this can NEVER make sense...

For all the "Good Friday" days in your life, both past present and future....
make NO mistake....Easter Sunday is EVERYTHING.
God turns it all around...brings His Victory....tells death to suck it!
Tells cancer- it does NOT win.
Tells injustice...Who The Judge Is.
Tells you and tells me....I AM THE GREAT I AM.

"You don't have to wait for the end. I Am, right now, Resurrection and Life. The one who believes in Me, even though he or she dies, will live.
Everyone who lives believing in Me, does not ultimately die at all." -John 11:25

God, Thank You for Your unspeakable sacrifice. Thank You that "Sunday" is coming.

In His Dust,