hip, cool & popular

Jesus had some interesting ideas about popularity & fame – He was, of course, quite famous when He walked on the earth for lots of different reasons:

  • healing sick people,
  • making religious leaders foam at the mouth with anger,
  • saying things that caused people to pause & think,
  • raising dead people to life,
  • giving thousands of people free lunch

Jesus was famous for lots of reasons but His popularity was a different story.  Jesus knew that His popularity with the crowds was at best fickle & fleeting.  When I watch how Jesus behaved & what He talked about when He lived among us, it’s very clear to me that He lived His life on earth to be “popular” solely with His heavenly Father.  He lived to make His heavenly Father known & attractive.  For our lives today, let’s understand that we are always “popular” with our heavenly Father 🙂

poise or poison

I’m a sucker for compliments and maybe you are as well.  I like to be told that I preached a powerful message, that I’m a great mom, I’m an excellent wife and I could keep going with a really long list.  Compliments are frequently really helpful, unless you get them from someone who you know isn’t a friend.  Compliments from people who are not your friends can be poisonous because the compliments are often insincere.  If you think about it, people who don’t have your best interests at heart can and will say anything nice to you because they don’t have any “skin in the game”.

In contrast, people who are genuinely your friend will tell you things that could be difficult to hear:

  • your zipper is unzipped,
  • you’ve been really cranky lately,
  • your thinking is really messed up,
  • that’s not a good color on you, etc

In Prov 27:6 it says that the wounds of a friend are faithful but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.  Don’t fall for deceitful kisses!

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Glitz & Glam

Packaging & image are important ingredients in the modern world. It seems to me that we frequently make lots of snap decisions about situations & people based on our “first impressions.” The tragedy of this mindset is that we can easily overlook people and things that have great substance & investment. Perhaps the religious leaders in Jesus’ day made this mistake & didn’t take the effort to know Jesus beyond the superficial assessment they made of His ministry (not including Nicodemus).
What’s in our hearts has more lasting value than transitory & superficial images.

Design Life

My husband was an engineer when we were first married & he schooled me on the idea of design life – everything is created with a design life (length of time for which it will be functional). This was a new idea to me when he explained it & now, I’m not as surprised when things stop working. For example, our phones have a design life of about 2years & the phone charger in my car seems to have a design life of maybe 3months :/
Thankfully, the design life of our relationship with God is eternal & infinite, a sharp contrast with everything human 🙂

Quick Health Tips

There is lots of talk about being healthy with our eating, exercise, sleep, etc. Personally, I can get overwhelmed with all of the info & trends flying around so I thought I’d make an EXTREMELY short list of essentials:
Physical body: drink primarily water & eat fresh
Relationships: forgive & forgive some more
Spiritual: daily Bible time, prayer & community / church

What else would you suggest?
Thanks for the input 🙂

hot topic: laughter

Life can be very serious & ever so often, we all need a good laugh.  So today’s hot topic is an attempt to provide some comic relief.  Here are just a few brief & funny traveling stories:

  • wrong week:  last year, I was scheduled to go to Dallas & had a 7am flight (which means that I leave my house no later than 5am).  When I got to the airport, I was having trouble getting the kiosk to print my boarding pass.  When I went to the airline person to help me, she ran my confirmation number through the computer & helped me to see that I was a week early – my flight was booked for the following week;  I chalked it up in the “practice” column.  Consider my husband’s surprise when I walked in the house less than an hour after I left, ready to take the kids to school that morning ,)
  • buddhist monks:  one time I was in the waiting lounge in the Calcutta airport & there were around 6-12 monks who were all seated together.  My friend dared me to jump in the middle of them so he could take a picture of me with them.  I took the dare & the monks scattered faster than cockroaches running away from light.  I learned that they had all taken a vow not to touch a woman & I almost caused them to break this vow with my silliness
  • chief safety officer:  I flew on a commercial plane once (oversees) when the pilot came out of the cockpit on an active runway to close the front door of our airplane – he seemed pretty casual about the whole thing