If one word could reflect God’s heart toward singles, this just might be it

I once took a man I was getting serious about to Kentucky for Christmas. I wanted to introduce him to my sister and her husband who hadn’t met him before. It was important to me to have someone who knew me well and cared about my future to vet this guy and give me their objective opinion.

The Lord Your God is with youWhat better setting for such an assessment than an emotionally-charged holiday with a bunch of strangers?

The weekend went smoothly and everyone seemed to get along. As we were leaving to return to Chicago, my sister pulled me aside Continue reading

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Goodness oozed right out of their pores

??????????????????????You’ve known people like that, haven’t you? If you were to look up “goodness” in the dictionary you would expect to see their face right there next to the definition. What specific traits do you think might be listed?

Marie and I (Diane) were discussing this concept recently. We began to reminisce about singles we have known through the years that we would agree are good men and good women. There were scores of them who came to mind and we discovered all had traits in common, such as: Continue reading

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Giving Peace A Chance

run-run-neverstop flickr jumpinjimmyjava

Photo credit: Flickr.com

Some days I wake up in a less than peaceful state of mind. Perhaps it’s the dream I just escaped, the looming duties of the day, or the sinking recollection of words exchanged the day before.

Maybe it’s something bigger.

If I let it, this state of unrest and anxiety can follow me all day and taint not only my own attitude but my interactions with everyone I meet.

Does that ever happen to you? Continue reading

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What to do when you’re “hard pressed on every side”

I don’t know about you, but I don’t go looking for sadness, disappointment, fear – or any kind of trouble for that matter. But somehow it seems to find me. I can be rolling along thinking everything is just fine and then I’ll get slammed by a rude comment, bad news, or an unexpected loss.

The apostle Paul refers in 2 Corinthians 4 to being “hard-pressed on every side” and I’m sure we can all relate to that. It comes with the territory as humans living in a fallen world.

But he points out that it is possible to be “hard pressed but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”

How is that possible? Continue reading

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Why Gentleness is a Good Thing

I see that skeptical look on your face. “Gentleness? Seriously?”  After all, ours is a self-sufficient, individualistic culture. We admire those who are self-made and independent; those who pull themselves up by their bootstraps, who make it on their own.

So is there a place for gentleness in all that? Or do we quietly equate gentleness with weakness, with vulnerability?

Apparently, gentleness was and is a desirable trait in the mind of God. He inspired the writer of Philippians to include it among the traits that evidenced the “fruit of the Spirit”, the visible proof that someone was indwelt by God’s own Spirit.

So what would that mean, anyway, to be “gentle”? Continue reading

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A beautifully written post from the perspective of a widowed father.

think relationally...

The dishes need to be washed. Laundry is piled in front of the washer. My youngest, affectionately called “the boy” in this blog, normally a healthy child is sick again—three times in the last two months. And I’m still trying to finish painting the front room. Then I was asked how I’m adjusting to being a widower single dad.

My reply… just fine.

Don’t get me wrong, there are difficulties now that were not experienced when there was a spouse around divvying up the household and parenting responsibilities. There is a difference when I’m the only one responsible for the upkeep of the home, car, coordinating the doctor visits, school stuff, and more. There are no reminders that this or that needs to be done. The things left out here or there no longer magically find their way to where they belong. Yes, there are difficulties and a lot of changes.

Yet…

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Do You Have An “Ebenezer”?

No, not a grumpy person in your life, like Ebenezer Scrooge. We all have those (maybe we ARE that person). That’s a whole different concept. We’re talking about a lovely tradition from the Old Testament where those who had experienced the faithfulness of God built an altar to remind them of His goodness.

As a child I often wondered what that second verse meant!

In the Old Testament book of Samuel, the story is told how after a long period of disobedience, God’s people repented and returned to Him.  God forgave them and gave them a fresh new beginning.

To commemorate this, Samuel (their priest and judge) erected a huge stone, which he called “Ebenezer” from the Hebrew meaning “stone of help” (1 Samuel 7:12). Every time the people passed it, they were reminded of God’s mercy.

Some singles we know have established their own “Ebenezers” to the faithfulness of God: Continue reading

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