Today’s Bread ~ Tebowmania

18 Jan

1 Thessalonians 5:18 – No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

Confession: I haven’t pulled for the Denver Broncos since I lived in Highlands Ranch, Colorado from 1990 to 1994.  And even then, those who know me well might say I didn’t care one way or another about football or any other sport, for that matter.

They wouldn’t be entirely wrong.

But on Saturday, January 14th, I sat on our couch with my husband, fervently hoping for the miracle.

The miracle didn’t come.  Tom Brady and the New England Patriots soundly beat the Broncos 45-10 without ever breaking a sweat, and the Broncos supernatural Super Bowl hopes faded like smoke rising from a blown out flame.

“NO MIRACLE!” screamed the Huffington Post.  “Pats Slam Broncos,” read the front page of Sports Illustrated dot com.  “Total Domination” glared out across The Boston Herald.  And even in the heart of Tebow Town, the Denver Post admitted that “the Broncos still have a long, long, long way to go.”

For many, Tim Tebow signified something greater than a Super Bowl ring.  He signified hope in something greater than ourselves.

I wonder how many evangelical Christians joined me in a chorus of prayer:

Please, God, I know that this is so trivial.  I know that in the grand scheme of things this game is sub-nothing.  But please give the Broncos this miracle.  Tim will give you the glory, and this will cause so many non-Christians to question their atheism and agnosticism. 

Even while I silently petitioned God for the victory, I knew that I was not praying alongside His will.  But hey, I figured, according to James 4:2, we have not because we ask not; right?

While my heart hoped for the win, my head knew the likely outcome.  My prayer for Mr. Tebow this week has been that He would glorify God anyway.  Even the most lukewarm Christians will thank God after a win.  Are not the most influential individuals the ones who praise Him through the storms (and I am not suggesting that a lost football game is a storm)?  My mind turns to the words of Pastor Matt Chandler a few years ago, upon learning that he had an aggressive form of brain cancer:  “He can heal me.  I believe He will heal me.  But even if He doesn’t, He’s still God, and He’s still good.”

Tebow’s words after the game give us a glimpse into his character and his faith: (more…)

Today’s Bread ~ Challenge Flag

13 Jan

Isaiah 43:25 – “I – yes, I alone – am the one who blots out your sins for my own sake and will never think of them again.  Let us review the situation together, and you can present your case if you have one.”

Aside from his God and his family, my husband lives for one thing and one thing alone.  Football season.

From February to August, Mike tracks scouting and recruiting.  He eagerly anticipates training camp, and he counts down the days to the first preseason game.  While everyone else watches dismissively, Mike is eyeing and evaluating the new players and the play calling.  The first home game of the season is treated with the same reverence as Christmas and Easter.

To avoid a widow-like state during these months, I have allowed my husband to educate me on the finer points of  football, and even found myself becoming a bona fide fan.

One thing that delights me beyond measure is the theology that I’ve discovered along the way.  Football provides some marvelous Biblical analogies.  Allow me to present one now.

Consider the challenge flag. (more…)

Today’s Bread ~ The Chain Reaction

22 Dec

Hosea 6:6 – I want you to be merciful; I don’t want your sacrifices.  I want you to know God; that’s more important than burn offerings.

I am so selfish.

Really, I am.  And don’t try to convince me I’m not.  I know my heart, and it’s selfish.

Allow me to explain.

My Sunday school class has adopted a family from Sunlight Missionary Baptist Church in south Dallas.  Sunlight is a small but Spirit filled building, complete with bars on the windows and doors.  Visit on a summer day and you’ll notice the absence of an air conditioner.  But every Sunday morning the congregation faithfully gathers to hear the hope and encouragement of Christ given by Pastor Ed.

As a Christmas mission, my class gathered funds and donations to bring the faithful patrons bags full of gifts and necessities.  Last Saturday, several of them (not me) caravanned south to deliver presents and packages to families in need.  Unfortunately, one little boy was left out.

Moved with compassion, my dear friend Starla led the charge to put together a goody-bag for the devastated child.

Yesterday, I, along with my children and two members of the class (we’ll call them Mike and Kathy), delivered the gifts.

I almost didn’t go.

Hosea 6:3 – “Oh, that we might know the LORD!  Let us press on to know Him!  Then He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.”

An e-mail went out a few days ago calling all-hands-on-deck to help pass out gifts.  I’m working this week at 90.9 KCBI, filling in for morning show co-host Terri Barrett.  But In spite of my schedule, I was available to go.  I knew I should go.  I knew it would be good to take my kids.  I just didn’t want to go. (more…)

Today’s Bread ~ Waterskiing

15 Dec

Isaiah 64:4 – For since the world began, no ear has heard, and no eye has seen a God like you, who works for those who wait for Him!

My big, crazy family takes a vacation together every summer, and it’s something that I look forward to all year. Mike and I, along with Caitlyn and Nick, my parents, my two sisters, their two husbands and their collective five children rent a house that sits on picturesque Grand Lake o’ the Cherokees in Jay, Oklahoma. My sweet grandmother has joined us twice, putting the total number of bodies in the house at one time at seventeen.

The house is a stone’s throw from the marina, so at our disposal are jet skis, paddle boats, pontoons, tubes, and a speed boat. This morning, as I was trying to patiently wait on the Lord, I was reminded of the speed boat.

I first learned to waterski in college. I’ve only done it a handful of times since then, but it’s like riding a bike. Once you get the feel for it, you have it.

As I was trying to teach some family members the sport last summer, I realized how counter-intuitive waterskiing really is. Everything in you wants to pull yourself up, but in order to skip along the surface of the lake you have to let the boat pull you. You are an active participant in the activity, but it’s not your strength that you are skiing in, it’s the boat’s.

(more…)

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