Monday, October 16, 2017

October 16, 2017 - BRING IT!

I must admit that one of my biggest pet peeves is a slow-poke! Whether it be as a coach, as a dad, as a teacher… whatever… in all areas where I carry some authority, I get pushed over the edge with slow responses. In fact, as a dad I have often told my kids, (and I think I have written about in these weekly devotions), that “delayed obedience is disobedience!”

This came to mind for a couple of reasons… first it is close to hoops season and I again will coach a middle school girls team. One thing that I demand as a coach is that the players “get after it!” One major key to winning basketball is winning loose balls, which means being the first to get there. So it seems as though the fastest wins; true, and not true… the fastest thinkers (seeing the need and jumping on it), not the fastest of feet win! Races in basketball are short bursts… and if a player is the first one moving she has a really good chance of winning the race!

The other reason I was thinking about it, steps out of my sports world into one of the other hats I wear, as director of a worship team. This group will be on stage this coming weekend at a church in Virginia and we are using the weekend as a training time. One of the main areas I will be addressing is the idea of “Move with a Purpose!” I will talk about how they move on stage and what that tells the audience; i.e. if they get off their stools lazily, (it will cause the audience to not believe they are serious about what they are singing.)

All of that to encourage us, (and picture me encouraging in my coach voice), to move with a purpose when we see a need. Good intentions are fine and dandy but mean nothing until our “feet” are moving. Last week I mentioned the idea of “beautiful feet” being those that “bring good news” (Is 5:7)… and the easy thing to key on is the good news portion of that verse. But a different word jumps out in this week’s challenge… it is not enough to just know the good news… it is not enough to be willing to share the good news (good intentions)… but one must “BRING” the good news…


I love these verses in Acts 1…

10 And while they looked steadfastly toward Heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into Heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into Heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into Heaven.”

This weekend I will work with a worship team that will be singing praises about our God! We will “steadfastly” look to Heaven; yet I want to be that voice in the ear that reminds them, and you, to not spend so much time looking up that you forget part of worship is stepping out!

A typical phrase used in the sports arena when someone is talking about his intentions... "BRING IT!" Let's see if we can "BRING IT" this week...


Monday, October 9, 2017

October 9, 2017 - Lose the Shoes (Footprints)

After a game we can look at a box score to get an idea of how players did in statistical categories, yet it doesn’t always tell the whole story about players that made differences in non-statistical ways. These are the players that set the screens to free up a scorer; the players that boxed out so their teammates could get a rebound; the linemen that opened up the holes for the star running backs or created a wall to protect the star quarterback; etc. I think you get the picture… there is a lot involved in the team being successful.

One of the ways we do get to through game film… (which I have admitted in past devotions that I hated… my pride didn’t like that fact that the film often showed I wasn’t as good as I thought.) But if one would watch it to re-trace his steps, he could see if he was in the right places at the right times…

In life, we don’t have the benefit of game film… but what if we could retrace our steps? What if we could see our footprints left behind? Where would these “footprints” show we have been… both literally in the places we visited, and figuratively of the places we went to in our minds?

I’ve recently been working on ideas with our ministry’s Lose the Shoes outreach. In this ministry we typically key on the act of giving shoes for those in need; our logo shows footprints where the back foot is the tread of a shoe and the front print is of a bare foot… a progression… a change…

As I contemplated the logo this weekend I thought about the idea of footprints and looked at the following: In Exodus 3:5 God tells Moses to go barefoot… pointing out the privilege and honor Moses had of being on holy ground. Moses lost his shoes in reverence of God! We also see in Scripture that feet are beautiful when they carry good news (see Isaiah 5:7.)

Because of what Christ has done, we have constant access to holy ground… the throne of grace. I believe maturity is when we live our daily lives in recognition of being in the presence of God.

In a nutshell, I want to ask each of you to examine what your “footprints” show about your day…. And here is the hope I wrote down this weekend:

Footprints: The prints left behind can give vital evidence… They show where you have been and give an indication of where you are going… when others look at the evidence of your footprints I hope they will say, “As he walked into the presence of God, God directed his path to those in need!”

I’m reminded of a song from years ago by Steve Green. He sang, “may the footprints that we leave, lead them to believe…”

Lose the shoes! Walk/live in God’s presence! Meet the needs of others!