Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Night Before Christmas Poem - A Visit from St. Nicholas

A Visit from St. Nicholas

By Clement Clarke Moore

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds;
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap,

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

10 Lessons from the Manger

10 Lessons from the Manger

  • Christmas is about God's gift of salvation, given to us in the most humble of circumstances.
  • Families make do with what they have.
  • Sometimes doing the will of God will inconvenience a few cows.
  • Life is full of solutions, or it's full of problems, depending on how you look at it.
  • Never get into a bragging contest about how tough your childhood was with Jesus.
  • The greatest church in history was a barn. You don't need the perfect latte. You need Jesus.
  • Know how things are made so you will know how to repurpose them. 
  • If life puts you in manure, don't sleep on the floor. 
  • Don't let anyone ever tell you that following Jesus is a cakewalk.
  • No great story ever started with everything going right. 

Do you have any to add?

Monday, December 21, 2015

Perpectives - Benediction Homily for Officer Charles Kondek Memorial 12/21/15


The optimist sees a glass that is half full, the pessimist sees a glass that is half empty, a police officer sees an open container…

 It is a different calling in life from most that leads to a different perspective. First responders encounter things on a daily basis that most people deal with only rarely during their lifetimes. So not only does an officer’s training lead them to focus on things that others may not notice, the experiences of helping people on their worst day leads to a different outlook on life. This can be both a blessing and a curse as these realities give an appreciation for life but can be overwhelming at times as well. A true understanding is really only possible within the community of people who provide these services. The family of first responders helps and supports one another. Here in Tarpon Springs we have always been very blessed with an excellent rapport between the different agencies.

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Who Are You Going To Believe?

Who Are You Going To Believe?

Genesis 3:3-5 NIV
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

The first lie ever recorded was when the serpent told Eve that God did not have good intentions in giving her a rule to follow. God was trying to keep the innocent two humans from harm and the serpent knew that. So he lied to them about God’s reason for giving them a rule to follow. He called God’s character into question then claimed that God had lied to them about what would happen in they disobeyed. Adam and Eve found out the hard way that God was trying to protect them and the serpent was trying to trick them into being destroyed. The poison of that fruit has been a part of human DNA ever since.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

The Warm Light on the Darkest Cold Night

The Warm Light on the Darkest Cold Night

When my son was young one of his favorite programs was an animated series called “Little Bear”. It was an adorable series about the adventures of a group of animal friends. One episode was all about a winter solstice celebration. All of the animals got together on the winter solstice for a feast. They sang a cute song and hung treats on a tree outside for the snow angels, which turned out to be deer and squirrels from the forest.