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.
What 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
Posted in Christian life, Singles, Uncategorized
Tagged community, contentment, healing, holiness, keepers, love, single, singleness, spiritual growth, valued by God
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
Posted in Fruits of the Spirit, Singles, Uncategorized
Tagged community, encouragement, fruits of the Spirit, goodness, honoring God, perspectives, reaching out, single, single parenting
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
Posted in Christian life, Fruits of the Spirit, Uncategorized
Tagged fruits of the Spirit, Jesus, love, peace, Relationships, single, single parenting, spiritual growth, trust God
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
Posted in Christian life, Fruits of the Spirit, Singles, Uncategorized
Tagged community, fruits of the Spirit, honoring God, joy, reaching out, serving others, single, single parenting
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
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