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June 26, 2017

Legacy—One Time Around

Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

Jesus replied:

Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.

And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Matthew 22: 37-40 (NIV)

It was a sunny morning much like today. He had awakened early as he did every day of his life. This morning, though, instead of heading to the nursery or the pasture, the office or a meeting, as he did when he wasn’t on vacation, he walked a few blocks from our apartment to spend a few moments amongst the hallowed grounds of a centuries-old cemetery in Dover, Delaware which we had mentioned to him the night before.

Lynda’s Dad did that a lot during the visits he and Lynda’s Mom made to see us, and throughout their travels to other corners of this great land. I had always supposed it was because he had developed and cared for a couple of memorial parks back home. I learned later—after many years with this gentle giant of a man who had blessed my life—that I was only partly right. (more…)

Posted by: Scott Whitaker at 6:00 am
Filed under: Thoughts

June 19, 2017

Father’s Day and the Picture You Paint

Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

One Father is more than a hundred schoolmasters.” An Old English Proverb

When she was a little girl, Nathan noticed that his elder daughter, Hannah, often looked at herself in the mirror. All little girls do. Later, when his younger daughter, Ellie Kate, came along and grew a bit, she would climb up on a stool to also look in the mirror. I suppose there might be a number of us that do that as well.

As Hannah gazed into the glass, the reflection of her smile affirmed for her what she had heard from those who love her—wonderful. But I wonder how easy it was for her to see past all the strips of paper that had been stuck to the mirror.

For you see, Hannah’s Daddy (Nathan, our son) had taken the time to tape crisply typed messages to his daughter, both direct and subliminal, sticking them onto the mirror which he knew she visited regularly to brush her hair and teeth, and other things. (more…)

Posted by: Scott Whitaker at 6:00 am
Filed under: Thoughts

June 12, 2017

Victory! Believe It!

Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12: 1-3 (NLT)

Here’s a question for us today.

What do we believe the race marked out for us looks like? What do you believe it will be—in the long term view of your life? How should you run it?

What do you believe it is for this season? For today?

What do you visualize it to look like? For you, your spouse, or other important person in your life. For your family members, your children and grandchildren. And how do we approach it to be able to run it well?

The writer of the book of Hebrews paints a picture of a race—a grueling race—which we are in. A race which will be challenging, seemingly uphill a lot of the way, running hard to finally get to the end, to the top of the mountain. (more…)

Posted by: Scott Whitaker at 6:00 am
Filed under: Thoughts

June 5, 2017

Worthy of Their Lives?

Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

Note: A few years ago, I heard the story of the pastor who preached a great message on Sunday. On the way out of the church, one of his flock thanked him for the great message. The next Sunday, he shared the same message. The same man leaving the church, again, thanked him for a great message. The pastor shared the same message the next week. This time the same man said to the pastor—“That was a great message, pastor, but do you realize that you have given it three Sundays in a row?” The pastor thanked him, and said “Yes, I know it’s been three Sundays, and I am going to keep sharing it until everyone gets it!” Today’s message is the same as last week’s, but as a country I’m not at all sure we get it yet, so here’s another attempt for you to share with others. God bless you all.)

While the storm clouds gather far across the sea, Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free,

Let us all be grateful for a land so fair, As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer…

God Bless America, Land that I love.

Stand beside her, and guide her, Thru the night with a light from above.

From the mountains, to the prairies, to the oceans, white with foam…

God bless America, My home sweet home.’” Irving Berlin

The morning breeze was soft and cool as I posted our American flag in its place of honor and walked on to retrieve the morning paper.

Today is always an emotional day.

Many of us find it hard to talk about and express what we are feeling while emotions pour forth from the past as we reflect on the lives we pause to honor today.

American heroes. God bless America.

Are we worthy of what they did for you and for me? (more…)

Posted by: Scott Whitaker at 6:00 am
Filed under: Thoughts
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