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14 days in a storm.......

The Vineyard   Dear Friends:   For over fourteen days Paul was aboard a doomed ship headed for Rome. Paul and some 276 people endured over two weeks of scary hurricane force winds in a small wooden ship in the Adriatic Sea. The folks on board had given up all hope of surviving. And yet they held on….waiting for the inevitable: the sinking of the boat and the drowning of all the passengers.  They had no rescue in sight!   Of course God knew what was happening and had permitted all of this for a very good purpose. The ship and all it’s cargo were lost, but not “a single hair” on the head of a single passenger was lost—-just...

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A fairy tale???

The Vineyard   Dear Friends:   I have discovered that the nights when I am “empty” and have absolutely nothing to share that I receive the most comments from my little “thoughts”, but the nights when I feel most endowed and erudite, no one is impressed, seems to notice or care.  God blesses me in my ignorance, weakness and journalistic dearth, and overlooks my attempts to contribute—He does His work when I get out of the way.   Today, as you can already imagine, was a spiritual and personal fiasco. I did not live up to my expectations and goals as a pastor, camp director, father and boss.  I am not happy with my responses to the challenges I faced,...

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Ring the bells of heaven!

The Vineyard   Dear Friends:   Last night we had one of our ritual “meltdowns” that seem to plague us on the weekends. One of the boys got frustrated with his brother and allowed a tapestry of profanity to escape his mouth.  When  I confronted him, we had to go through about fifteen minutes of him denying, then admitting, then editing, then admitting again what he did.  While I am not comfortable with this, I am becoming more accustomed to it.  Keeping promises, telling the truth, controlling tempers and keeping our hands to ourselves seems to be the common sins of this home.   But last night after the meltdown I spent some time with him to not only express...

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To hear what we don't like to hear............

The Vineyard   Dear Friends:   Acts 21:21 “Then the Lord said to me, ‘Go; I will send you far away to the Gentiles.’ ” 22 The crowd listened to Paul until he said this. Then they raised their voices and shouted, “Rid the earth of him! He’s not fit to live!”   Eventually, if we live long enough and speak loud enough, the common man will be offended by us. That seems to be the lesson of the New Testament.  I wonder, then, what is to made of me if I never cause consternation or draw the ire of the common man. Could it be that my message has become to accommodating and “watered down”?  Have I become like a “mega...

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The truth is..............

The Vineyard   Dear Friends:   One of challenges with the four boys in my home is how to react to the constant lying they are so accustomed to.  It’s been said that you can tell when the North Korean government is lying——it’s anytime they print or say anything. In some ways that makes it easier to work with them—you know from the starting point that they can’t be trusted.   But my boys do sometimes tell the truth. And while I don’t want them to know it, I just can’t tell when they are lying and then they are “truthing”!  But nothing, absolutely nothing eats at the fiber of our home like dishonesty does.   God tells us in...

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