What is our motive…

Good Morning, We own a building that was once a pharmacy, a school, a bargain store then a horticulture center and now it is used as a warehouse/office/junk storage/men’s group on Tuesday mornings, so forth and so on. It had a full glass storefront when we acquired it and we decided to remodel the front more for safety because it was old glass and also to create a little more privacy. On occasions, I will run into someone who asks, “What is it you do in that building?” “What is in there?” “Can I just look in the door to see?” My response, in the order of their asking “Nothing, nothing, absolutely!, just stop by anytime.” But they never do. Maybe if I said we are hiding something we don’t want anyone to see or know about, those people would line up at the door, or maybe not. The point I am making is there is no such thing as a private...
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My first impression…

Good Morning, There is an old manufacturing plant off the beaten path near our town. Kudzu, weeds of various kinds, Mimosa trees, and cane breaks had overtaken the structure and the parking lot. The building was almost completely hidden from view and if one didn’t know it was there they may have never known it was once a thriving business that supplied motor blocks to the automobile industry. The company existed long before the south became the new Detroit so they were well ahead of their time and this could have been one of the issues that lead to their early demise. Anyway, recently I noticed a vehicle or two parked near the building/forest and two people looking at the structure. Shortly afterward grading equipment was delivered to the site and began clearing the overgrowth surrounding the building and within a few days other crews were on-site changing out siding, sweeping, replanting shrubbery, painting, washing windows and working on the inside. Today...
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And the wind cried Irma…

My first thought upon seeing the comparison was what are the people going to do, stay or go? Although there was an evacuation order, they did both. Most everyone left the area, however some decided to ride it out and stayed. I saw one news reporter ask a person why he was staying, “Well, I have been here for 40 years and this is where I live, and you have to take the bad with the good.” What? No, we don’t. If I pick up a bag of apples and one is rotten, I don’t buy it, I let the store operator know there is a bad apple in the bag. If I want to purchase a pair of shoes and when I open the box one worn out and the other one new, I don’t buy it because they are in the same box. If a carpenter used inferior lumber but covered it up with new siding is that...
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When activity becomes achievement…

This is a story I have used previously and I like to use it to remind me that life is a struggle and sometimes we have to rely on the knowledge and confidence others have in us to help us do things we never thought we could do. We don’t always see what they see because we get so busy in the world we forget to look within or we don’t take the time. We just robotically process information and do the things that keep us in our comfort zone. It’s working; it’s not broke, so why do we need to think about a fix. “Come to the edge,” He said. “No,” was the reply. “Come closer, see what I see,” He said. “No, I am afraid I will fall, I can stay here and see,” was the reply. “Don’t be afraid, I am here with you, come to edge,” he beckoned. I went to the edge, trusting Him to...
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Purpose

Good Morning, Do you ever wonder about your purpose? I do. I ponder this much of the time, because some days I really struggle with what I am here to do, outside of being a husband, father, and friend and let us not forget, worker bee. Somehow, it just doesn’t seem as though I am making any progress toward something, anything, not sure what, but there are days it appears I stood still, in one place, without forward or reverse movement. I know for a fact I wasn’t still or in one place any of the time but at the end of the day what I accomplished isn’t as clear to me as it should be. Maybe I am over thinking this issue, just maybe. I understand that as a believer, I am not here for my own purpose at all; I am here for His purpose, for Him to guide and direct my life, for Him to show me the...
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Positive lessons out of Negative situations

Good Morning, Hot, hot, hot that’s all I can say about the weather. Everywhere I stop someone says, “It sure has been hot, summertime has finally arrived.” “Yes sir, it is and it has” is my usual response, however sometimes I add, “I don’t like the summer time because of the heat.” Then one day I realized how negative that sounded. It made it seem I was an unhappy person and I would complain if it was too hot or too cold, so I changed my response. Now I say, “Yes sir; it’s great to be alive and have the opportunity to enjoy each day, rain or shine, hot or cold.” It works better, but now everyone avoids me because they think I am a nut. I like being positive and being around positive minded people. A positive person can have a conversation with a negative person and when the positive person lays down a positive vibe, the negative person is usually...
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….and they will not depart from it

Good Morning, I am amazed at children today, just when we think they aren’t watching or listening to our teaching, they perform an act of kindness, totally out of character, for a stranger, be the most polite and level headed person in a tense situation or pour out some “old” wisdom when we need to hear it and we were not expecting them the be the source from which it came. Once upon a time, our son was just a wee lad and we came to a traffic light in town I knew had a short green light window so I shot across the intersection just as it was changing. Later in the day, we returned from the opposite direction to the same intersection and the light was red. I was slowing to stop when my son said, “Dad just keep going!” I said, “I can’t son, the light is red and we have to stop.” His comment back to me...
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The Answer is No

From: James Dodwell, Hammers for Hope Good Morning, There is a word in the English vocabulary that I have trouble saying. It is a simple pronunciation, one syllable, the fourteenth and fifteenth letters in the alphabet, respectively. It has been a blessing at times when I was unable to pronounce the word, it has gotten me in some crazy predicaments by not being able to get the word out soon enough and it has caused mixed feelings within when I was finally able to line the letters up just right, apply sound and actually vocalize the word. By now, you have said the ABC’s while counting on your fingers and realized the word is “No”. It’s not a difficult word to say, but knowing when to use it and when not to use it is what gets me in trouble. No, it can’t be done, No, that’s impossible, No, I will not, No, I didn’t, all seem so negative to me. I am...
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In the blink of an eye…

From James Dodwell, Hammers for Hope Good Morning, I remember just after our son was born I was sitting, holding him in the nursery rocker, I blinked my eyes and he was a toddler. Then I blinked again and he was a teenager, and then blinked once more and we were attending his college graduation. Blink, blink, blink, fiancé, marriage, and then a grandchild, all respectively, all in the blink of an eye or so it seems. I tried several methods to prevent the involuntary eye blink, toothpicks under the eyelids, super gluing my eyelids to my eyebrows, I even considered having them surgically altered but I feared it would make me look too weird and people would stare at my altered appearance and run away. So, instead, I just continue to blink the years away, minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day… The irony is when I was younger I couldn’t wait to be older so I could do what...
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Read That Label

From James Dodwell, Hammers for Hope Good Morning, There is a white strip of label tape placed just above the radio display of the truck dashboard. Printed on the strip are the words of Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” I placed it there so I will not fail to see the words each time I enter the cab. The words on the label tape are committed to memory and I notice the strip each time I enter but I don’t actually read them every time; however I am very aware of their meaning and my intentions of the placement. This is the second or third application of the label. Over time the sun’s rays warm the dash along with the interior of the cab which causes the heat sensitive label material to darken and the words fade. When I notice this happening, I will remove the old strip and replace it with a shiny new...
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