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Sunday, October 20, 2019
Chaplain's Corner: 2014 Archives 

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Airplane Mode


I was looking the other day on my phone and found a setting called airplane mode. I am not a person that flies very often, so I will seldom need that feature. It is amazing what that little setting does for a phone. It basically in my non technical language puts the phone in game mode. The talking and texting stuff is shut down. I know some people that live that way, not their phone, the person.

As you go through the holidays this year I want you to try an experiment. Unplug from social media and spend time with real people. Pop some popcorn, play a game and talk. Instead of swapping gift cards, go to dinner together and give the best gift of all, yourself. 




Is a Rose Just a Rose?

There is a quote from Abraham Lincoln that says: “We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.” There is wisdom in that statement. Life for each of us will have times of thorns. The majority of us focus on the thorns and the pain those little rascals inflict. Look at the same situation a little different and a rose might come into view.

You might also find a rainbow on a rainy day. You may also hear a baby’s laugh following a diaper change. Yes, we will all have thorns in our life, which is precisely why the Creator added the rose. So next time you get stuck, look for the rose.




Hate to Bug You

There is a very real line in the state of Georgia, known as the gnat line. If you have never ventured below the gnat line consider yourself lucky. These little creatures define why we have the phrase being bugged.

You can sometimes experience the same treatment from people around if you attempt to hold a life principle that is not popular. Honesty, valor, responsibility are just a few principles that seem to be under attack today. My suggestion is to hold to your principles, and remember the old country saying. When there is light, there will always be bugs. 




Restoration

American Restoration is a show that takes antique items and restores them to a like new condition. Some of their work amazes me how the end product is beautiful both inside and out. The restoration team makes it clear that it is often the inner workings of an item that is the most difficult to restore. They can make the outside beautiful, but beauty does not make something function.

If you apply that lesson to people, the message remains true. We can do all sorts of things to improve our exterior presentation. The work on the inner person is always the most difficult. The result of working on the inside however begins to affect the outside. It shows up as peace, contentment, and joy on our face. So you want to know where to start? Keep in mind that truth is never a product of consensus. I told you it was hard.




The Life of a Spider

Have you ever thought about the life of a spider? Most folks just want them to not exist. For a moment, imagine what a spider’s life is like. Every time they get their web set and neat, something or someone comes along and destroys it. Their work starts all over again to repair the destruction that was just done. This process can occur several times a day. Faithfully each time they return to fix their web. In the human world it reminds me of the endless stack of laundry or living with teenagers.

What about you? Do you have the strength and fortitude to keep working on the web of issues around you? Most of us just manage our mess and hope it does not become unmanageable. Just a suggestion, do not look at the mountain of issues. Choose one at a time. Pray about it, and move forward with the help of your Creator to recreate it into a thing of beauty.




1994

Letter writing is a lost art.  Most interpersonal communication is now an email or through social sites. My grandmother was one to write letters, often to correct behaviors she had observed. They were difficult to read, but they were truthful. What would you write in a letter to yourself? If you were to write a letter to who you were twenty years ago, what would it say? For those of you in your twenties bless you, and make it five years ago. Would these letters warn you of things to avoid? Would it contain a list of events not to miss? Or would it warn you to prepare for major life events?

From those that have recently spent time in a funeral home saying goodbye to a loved one, it should say something about time management.  Things not said because we are too busy. What would it say?  Think about it and adjust today so tomorrow will be different. 




Spring Has Sprung

The last of winter’s brown leaves are dropping. They are being replaced with fresh tender green leaves. Every shade of green is represented in the new growth. It is amazing to me how long some trees hold on to their dead leaves. There is no benefit to the tree, yet all through the winter they remain.

What old useless things are you holding on to? Some things are just that, things. Do you have Items that have moved from house to house and never been unpacked? Other things are emotions and grudges we love to hold onto. Grudges and unforgiveness only hurt our spirit. So in the words of a popular song 'Let It Go'.




Did You See?

Did you see the sunrise this morning? It often occurs as we are in the car, or getting ready for the day. There are times the sun will rise right in front of our eyes, and we still do not see it happen.  For me there is something majestic about a sunrise. The same is true about holding a new born baby, and hearing taps at the funeral of a loved one. All of these do one thing. They make me realize I am part of something much bigger than my little world. They put me in perspective with creation and a loving God.

So plan a day soon to get up out of bed, just to watch the sun climb over the horizon. If you plan it right you can even join others to watch the sun rise, let’s say a Sunday morning in April.




2 Do List

I do not know about you, but I could not function without my 2 do list. Mine is so up to date, it is on my phone, computer and out in cyber land somewhere.  There is a great feeling of accomplishment when I can check something off my list. What things are on your list? Things to do pick up, and people to contact might be listed. In all of your things to do, is there an item for the spiritual side of who you are? We are creatures of mind, body, and spirit. Our spirit is something that often ignored.

To feed the spirit is not a difficult task. It can be looking at the creation all around us. I love holding a dry baby, watching as spring arrives, and taking in the majesty of creation. I still am astounded that a hummingbird migrates across the Gulf of Mexico. These small things help me keep things in perspective. 




Love Is . . .

One of our goals should be to love others as we love ourselves. As I speak with people, some have more problems loving themselves than they do their neighbor. Self image, old criticisms, guilt, along with a hundred other things lead us to this dislike of ourselves. One object that contributes to this self image issue the most is our mirror. We seldom look to enjoy the image, it is usually to fix a perceived flaw or issue. 

Do not let others dictate what beauty is to you. If you hear one thing, please understand that beauty has nothing to do with your external image. Beauty comes from the core of who we are. After all you are made in the image of the Creator of heaven and earth. So start now loving the person you are.

 



Can You Fool Yourself?

Abraham Lincoln is attributed with the quote: “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.” What that does not answer is how often we attempt to fool ourselves. As this new year starts have a goal of being honest with yourself.

We all know the weaknesses we have, as well as our strengths. Stand strong on your strengths, and build up your weaknesses. When we attempt to fool ourselves that weakness is strength, we are setting ourselves up for failure. Do not be too hard on yourself. Do not forget that the Creator that formed you still loves you.




Keep the Fork

One of my favorite things as a child was Sunday lunch at Grandma’s.  I could always count on a good meal with lots of love put into its making.  A drawback was all the yucky vegetables.  Some of the worst were stewed okra and tomatoes, broccoli, and lima beans.  It was everything I could do as a small child to choke them down.  Grandma never ate with the rest of us.  She was always too busy keeping the food bowls full.  I found out later she was one to eat as she cooked so she was full by mealtime.  The best Sundays were when as she picked up our plates she told us to keep our forks.  When you kept your fork, the best was yet to come.

All of us face days when our plates are filled with vegetables.  It takes all we have to choke down the current events.  The great part is there are also times when we get to keep our forks.  Now it may not be grandma’s cobbler, loaded down with ice cream, but it is still just as sweet.  Look around - it might be friendships, or a small child, but they are there.

As a closing thought, I now enjoy the vegetables as much as the rest of the meal.  And when my time comes, please bury me with a fork, because for me the best is yet to come.


        
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