Wednesday, August 25, 2010

my father and my son...

I know I have probably used this photo before, but its one of my favorites! Thursday is the 16th anniversary of my father's homegoing (also his sister's Birthday). Now I envision the two of them side by side, looking into the face of our Savior!

Happy Birthday Aunt Maralyn!

I leave Saturday for a few days in California (where I will see my Aunt and family). I will be speaking Saturday evening in Bakersfield, at the Doubletree Hotel. Tuesday evening, I will share at Discovery Church, in Carlsbad. I am looking forward to this trip! It will be my first to California since I was 14. I only wish Deanna could be coming!

MY Upcoming Speaking Schedule:

August 26 Radio Interview KAXL 7:10 (CT) Bakersfield, California
August 29 Rejuvenate Ministries, Bakersfield, California
August 31 Discovery Church, Carlsbad, California
September 14 Dallas Christian College, Dallas, Texas
September 22 Pampa Youth Ministry Alliance, Pampa, Texas
November 5-7 iGo Mission Conference, Tulsa, Oklahoma
December 5 Marquez Baptist Church, Marquez, Texas
December 26-January 2 Nuevo Laredo Mission Trip

I struggle to understand the nature of close friendships.

In the last few years, we have met many who tell us they feel like they know us, upon our initial encounter. I know this is in part due to this website.

However, we seldom are afforded the privilege of moving beyond.

In my lifetime, I can count on one hand the number of really close friends I've had.
Sometimes I miss having someone I can really confide in, who doesn't judge me based upon my failures. That kind of reciprocity is important in each of our lives. When it's absent, struggle increases.

As frustrating as that is at times, what is of greater difficulty for me is that my precious wife often feels alone.

Many times she has met new women who exchanged initial pleasantries, only to have them shut down when information on their children is exchanged.

I know that people often do not know what words to offer. However, the idea of not talking about ALL of our children is something that brings pain. She knows when someone wants to know more and when they've had all they can handle.

It's amazing how few want to know more.

Our tremendous lack of desire to be intimate with each other is maddening. We were created to be in relationship. Some of our most natural desires are to get to know one another.

Yet the truth for many is that unless they can talk openly about themselves, their purchases and their accomplishments they don't have any interest in you. Their interest in you, is not in you... it's having you listen to them.

One sided friendships are not relationships. They are shallow and meaningless, superficial, yet all too frequent.

Too much of the time, we don't really listen to what another says, but are formulating our next sentence.

One of the things my partner at Awe Star taught our students this past summer was that Jesus "listened and asked questions." He encouraged them to do likewise as they sought to love one another.

If we would but take this kind of time, many needs would be met that go unnoticed.

We need to be in relationship. We need to listen. We need to love.

These are very basic elements taught to us by the life of Jesus.

Practicing them helps us to show His love to those we otherwise ignore.



At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this picture. It sure brings back a lot of great memories----also tears.
Aunt Maralyn

At 6:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this picture, too! It's a great one of two special people! I know there are many memories this time of year--of your dad and of BJ.

I understand exactly what you're talking about in your blog post about people's inability to have intimate friendships. One-sided ones are always painful.

I too wish Deanna could go to California with you. Enjoy your visit with all of Aunt Maralyn's family and give her a belated birthday hug from me!

Cousin Becky

At 8:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My wife's son died when he was 14 from an asthma attack. That was 10years ago. Some of our closest friends and family have trouble communicating about's as if they really wish she would just "get over it". This will never happen. She has learned to put a foot in front of the other each day, and I believe she trusts that the Lord has reasons we cannot understand...but she will always suffer. We discuss him often, but many around us don't know how to do this. Last November we had a "surprise" birthday party for him at his gravesite (it was a surprise for her). She was really touched by all the friends/family who joined us. One of our closest friends couldn't join us, however. They felt ill at ease....that was sad.
God Bless,
Greenfield, IN

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