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THE AFTERS-BROKEN HALLELUJAH
OK so maybe "break" wasn't the right word. Maybe it was just a cheap ploy to get your attention.
If I have it, check this out:
Thanks for signing the petition and spreading this around!
I'm quite forgetful lately, for no good reason. Maybe it's just part of getting old? HOPE NOT! The other day on my show, we kicked around ideas on improving memory.
For anyone you know who'd like to be a little less forgetful, here are some highlights:
1. Write things down. Even if you forget to take the thing you wrote on with you, the mere act of writing can burn stuff into your brain.
2. Use technology: set up alarms, alerts, etc. on your computer and/or smart phone.
3. Exercise your brain! One person told me she plays Brain Age to keep her mind sharp. I personally attempt the same thing via Words With Friends, Scramble With Friends, and Hanging With Friends (what can I say...I like word games!).
My wife has been SO diligent this (and every) Christmas, trying to make sure each of our three boys (ages 7, 5, and 2) feel equally loved this year. In other words: making sure there is parity under the tree.
Ensuring this equality often involves money. But not always. We're trying hard to teach our kids their gifts are a celebration of God's ultimate gift. After all...you know how it is...even the BEST, most expensive gift you find at the store will in all likelihood be something most children get bored with before Christmas week is done.
That's why I found these gift ideas (penned by Joshua Becker) much more intriguing, and possibly long lasting:
Anger. Heart broken. Despair. Empathy for all impacted. More Anger. In fact, of all the emotions I've been dealing with today as we learn about the tragic school shooting in Connecticut, anger has been my strongest and most frequently recurring feeling.
Probably like you, I am still sorting through a lot of emotions and questions. Including the one some Christians may be afraid to ask: WHY, GOD???????????
Short of having that answer, I did find a couple thoughts from some of my Facebook friends comforting:
I have a plan on eradicating the planet of EVERY HEATHEN SOUL. It's not terribly hard at first glance, but it might require changing how you view they way THEY view "the holiday season."
Around this time last year, I used "X-mas" in a status update on Facebook and lost four friends. Am I wrong in thinking that's a pretty trivial thing to end a friendship over??
Here are my reasons for not getting worked up when people don't use the preferred "Christian" words for the season:
However election day went for you, that shouldn't be the end of the story. Whether your picks won or lost, there is still a lot of work to be done.
I've seen and heard a lot of fellow Christians lamenting the results, or gloating. Both sides have acted like the outcome was the final say on all they care about. Like, now that the votes are in, God's all done with His work here.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
My friend Donnie had some awesome ideas on putting your faith into action between elections:
It's quite painful for social media junkies like me to be on Facebook and Twitter today. (By the way, are you and I connected at those places yet? Head to Facebook.com/SOSRadioMike and Twitter.com/MikeCouchman if not. : - )
It's painful mostly because of the political chatter. Everyone's cheering on their side and dissing the other side, not realizing it's all just lawn signs. (When's the last time somebody's lawn sign changed your vote?)
I decided to take this approach once we learn who wins:
Of all the Hurricane Sandy images I saw this week, this one will stick with me the most:
That's somebody in New Jersey meeting a simple need. Most folks didn't have power. This person did. And they offered it freely.
To me, that's the essence of being a Jesus follower! He called us to meet needs. To meet people where they were. Over and over in the Bible, Jesus proved how important this was with His own actions.
From my devotions and reading this week, a few of my favorite takeaways.
In no particular order BTW...a totally random compiling of things I think you might find inspirational, hopeful, useful, etc. :)
"I err on the side of grace to others because someday I’ll stand before God, and I trust He’ll offer grace to me in Jesus."- Jud Wilhite
"Joy doesn't depend on what's going on around you; it depends on what's going on inside you." - Brandi Lanai
"Plant, and you will harvest faithfulness. Plow the ground God has given. The Lord will come and make good things rain on you." - Hosea 10:12