Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Love This


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Drawing Strength And Perspective

This girl is my hero

Her name is Ashley Aven. She was diagnosed with AML leukemia at the age of 17. For a year she fought with everything in her, and unfortunately lost her battle on August 15th.
I remember thinking to myself on the day of her funeral how it was going to be a tough day.
I started feeling sorry for myself, then realized that Ashley would be thankful to have a bad day.
She was one of the strongest human beings I have ever met.
I played in an alumni softball game as a fundraiser for her family back in June.
I saw her earlier that day and remembered telling her how nervous I was seeing as I hadn't played ball in 5 years.
She offered me peace an encouragement and told me I'd do great.
Here I was, perfectly healthy, complaining about something that didn't even really matter.
And there she was, battling for her life, telling me everything was going to be okay.
Whenever I have a sad moment, I stop and think about Ashley.
I think about the hell she and her family went through with her battle and how she was so strong and courageous.
She always put others before herself and never once did she complain.
What a beautiful lesson in perspective.
Thank you Ashley for your life and legacy.


Sunday, November 7, 2010


Nothing breaks my heart more than seeing someone “fall” from God and have His people throw them out on the street as if worthless.
Our job as God’s chosen people is to SHOWER grace on all. Grace is NOT conditional. It’s the very essence of who God is and why he sent His son.
Please do not get me wrong and think that I’m trying to excuse sin. True grace does NOT EXCUSE sin, but showers UNENDING love and compassion on the sinner.
Grace does not have a time limit.
Have you ever had a really bad injury and when it happened you didn’t even feel pain? That’s what our sin is like. At first we are numb to our sin and don’t recognize it. It is only when the numbness and shock wears off and the pain sinks in that a person can truly start to heal. You have to be broken in order to be restored. This takes time, so be patient. You can’t fix something that you don’t recognize as broken.
Steps to redemption or a guide to achieving grace makes the person focus on the dos and don’ts. That is not grace, it is probation. It’s like serving time or doing community service. It is not unconditional and free of charge. By putting a stipulation or a checklist on grace it’s saying that Jesus is not enough.
Jesus is MORE than enough.
God made us a promise and that promise is that there is nothing you can or can’t do to make Him turn his back on you. It’s a promise from God sealed through Jesus. As God’s chosen people we must also make a promise that there is nothing someone can or can’t do to make YOU turn your back on them.
In order for someone to be restored and renewed they must be shown grace. Without grace there is no reason for them to change their ways. They don’t see a reason to change if everyone’s still going to hate them anyway. What a sad message we have sent to the church and His people.
Believe me, I am not saying that I am guilt free. I have been conditional with my grace and my love more than I would like to admit.
However, there came a time in my life where all I needed was grace and it was no where to be found. It was conditional. It had a time limit and it showed no compassion. That is not grace from God, that is worldly and the difference is huge.
The second most important commandment in the bible above loving God with all of your heart, soul, mind, and strength is to love others. Loving others means showing them God’s compassion and grace.
Next time someone disappoints you, sins, or you find yourself judging, please stop yourself. Think about Jesus and what He would do given the situation. Think about grace and forgiveness, the very reason why God sent His son. Put yourself in that persons shoes and think about how you would want someone to treat you had you been the one to fall. We are brothers and sisters in Christ. It is our duty to carry out God’s word to His people.