Bearing Fruit

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The fruit of silence is prayer. The fruit of prayer is faith. The fruit of faith is love. The fruit of love is service. The fruit of service is peace.

This philosophy was Mother Teresa’s calling card. It’s quite simple really, and addresses something that so many of us are searching for. That peace that is beyond all understanding.

It starts with something quite small that I keep rediscovering. Continue reading

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Music Monday: From the Inside Out

“Everlasting, Your light will shine when all else fades.”

So many parts of this song speak to me, but this line stands out a bit more brightly for me today.

When everything else is gone, when everything has fallen away, when all is said and done, the emptiness is filled with a light that cannot be extinguished. This is the base and core of our existence.

As St. Augustine said, “Our hearts are restless Continue reading

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True faith

If you truly believe something, then it must truly change you, Randall Wallace, Amayzing Graces, Karen May

“Modern people will say, ‘I’m spiritual, but not religious.’ … The implication is that any belief is a bad one; any belief that causes a person to change direction, make any real alteration in life, undergo any transformation, change any value system is bad. I say that is the only belief that is a belief. If you truly believe something, then it must truly change you.” – Randall Wallace, Living the Braveheart Life

 

A friend once told me about a breakthrough insight that he had. He was “spiritual, but not religious,” because he didn’t think that God should be put in a box. God was bigger than any religion.

He was right, of course. God is much bigger than any religion. He’s much bigger than any building we could build, and system we could create, and any philosophy we could think up.

However, my friend realized that in rejecting religion as being too small, he was putting God in his own box. Continue reading

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Water leak!

We discovered a water leak in our yard this weekend. When we looked at the water meter, the dial leading to our house was spinning wildly. We did the math, and we had used 74,000 gallons since our last bill. 74. Thousand.

Three swimming pools worth of water.

And no one had noticed.

How could we possibly miss that much water in our yard? Continue reading

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Music Monday: I Hope You Dance by Lee Ann Womack

 

I love to dance. Moving to music, being spun around a dance floor, and even the coordinated line dances are all so much fun. Research shows that music and movement release endorphins, help facilitate healing, and improve our overall mental and emotional health.

We can sit on the side because we think we aren’t good enough, but our abilities don’t actually matter when it comes to the benefits.

It’s the same in life. We can sit on the sidelines, because Continue reading

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What kind of life do you want to lead?

Do you want to live a life of success or significance? John O'Leary, On Fire, Amazing Graces, Karen May

Do you want to successful or significant?

I read this question in the book On Fire, by John O’Leary (which is a great read if you’re looking for some inspirational summer reading)

As I read it, I realized that the two are not mutually exclusive, but they can be if you have the order wrong. We can be successful, making lots of money, inventing the latest app or gadget, or even writing the next hit novel, and never even begin to have a life of significance.

But, if we take our lives and use them to live a life of significance Continue reading

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Bath Time

Create in me a clean heart, Amayzing Graces, Karen May

The last couple weeks, our house has been a stinky mess around six o’clock in the evening. Summer is here, and at least one child arrives home from all-day outdoor camp covered in grime, sweat, and fun.

As much as I love them, a great big hug is going to be delayed until there is some sort of cleanup. It’s always surprising to see how much stuff one little body can accumulate in a few hours. And, they never even notice it. Somehow, they don’t smell anything, and they are pretty comfortable once they have cooled off in the air conditioning.

Meanwhile, everyone around them is pretty sure that a bath is in order. Continue reading

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Music Monday: Multiplied by NeedtoBreathe

“I have surrendered to your design. May this offering be stretched across the sky.”

I have talked to two friends recently who majored in the wrong thing in college. When they finished school and started working, they realized that what they thought they should do, what the people around them told them that they should do, was not actually something that they enjoyed. It didn’t fit who they were. At 18, it can be hard to see what you really want when the current of the stream is pushing you so hard in a different direction.

Now, however, they have found what they really enjoy. It doesn’t matter what the “right” major was, this is their calling. They have found their design and surrendered to it.

It’s funny how hard it is for us Continue reading

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Where does change begin?

How small of all that human hearts endure - Samuel Johnson, Amayzing Graces, Karen May, beach

I am not a fan of politics, particularly in today’s environment. I truly admire and appreciate those who are committing their lives to making changes and trying to shape our world through it, but on no level is it for me. I have been called to a different way of affecting change.

The thing is, this different way can feel very small and ineffective when compared to the global level of  action involved in governments and politics. When you look at the world, it can be daunting to think that one small person can make any kind of difference.

How much water do I save in the world when I turn off the faucet as I brush my teeth? None, really. How much do I change the world when I take a moment to see the angry person in front of me Continue reading

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The Sounds of Silence

We are always on. The phone, the computer, the television, the people around us, music. Our world is filled with noise and distraction, responsibilities and needs.

So, it can be very hard for us to be quiet. It seems like such a waste of time.

As I sat the other day with someone in a prayer of silence, I noticed a lot of things. There was nothing on in my house as we prayed. No dishwasher running, no phone buzzing, nothing. But there were hums, creaks, pops, and sounds everywhere. I never hear them during my every day life. I’m focused on other things, making noise of my own, or even lost in my own thoughts.

As I sit in silence, though, I can hear the small things around me. If I am outside, I notice Continue reading

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