“For out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks”
“The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.”
“But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart,
and these defile them.” Matthew 15:18
What do those verses have to do with Orange Juice? Let’s take a step back. If you were to take a whole, unpeeled orange and squeeze it with all your strength, what would the result be? Right… the result would be orange juice; it wouldn’t be tomato juice or apple juice. Because an orange, or any fruit for that matter, can only give up what it has on the inside. Oranges make orange juice.
And so it with us humans; we do everything we can to keep our wrapper (the orange peel) tight around us, unblemished and intact, holding in all that there is about us; all that we are made of. Yet, let an unexpected life event come at us, applying a bit of pressure and it’s highly possible we might glimpse just a small tear in our wrapper. But for the most part, our insides are still intact; we’re still holding strong on the outside.
Apply a bit more pressure and you’ll likely see more of us spill out; a bit of juice and perhaps a tiny bit of pulp. But that stops as soon as the pressure stops and while our wrapper is wounded; it’s just a “flesh wound”.
“Life changes overnight for Coach John Harrison when his high school basketball team and state championship dreams are crushed under the weight of unexpected news. When the largest manufacturing plant shuts down and hundreds of families leave their town, John questions how he and his family will face an uncertain future. After reluctantly agreeing to coach cross-country, John and his wife, Amy, meet an aspiring athlete who’s pushing her limits on a journey toward discovery. Inspired by the words and prayers of a newfound friend, John becomes the least likely coach helping the least likely runner attempt the impossible in the biggest race of the year.”
Overcomer by Chris Fabry
“What do you allow to define you?”
With the upcoming release of Overcomer – the movie – slated for later this month, I decided to read the book. Rarely does any book capture my attention like this one did. Even more rare does any book evoke an emotional response from me, as this one did.
It is difficult to write this review without spoilers, so I will only give my thoughts and impressions of the story and leave the reader to embrace the goodness and pursue their own journey of overcoming.
The Book is divided into 4 parts (The Coach, The Question, The Answer, and The Voice) that will take the reader through a year long journey of 4 distinct characters – John the Coach, Hannah Scott, Barbara Scott and T-Bone (aka Thomas Hill). Through these rich and relatable characters, we are reminded that sometimes God’s plan for our life doesn’t always follow what we want for our life.
We are privileged to journey through this particular year as these characters come to terms with disappointment at the loss of what was, disillusionment of what is coming, apprehension and trepidation of our expectations of ourselves and our lives and the burdens we all carry, both real or self-imposed.
A minute doesn’t seem like a big deal. After all, it’s just 60 seconds. It goes by in the amount of time that the average heart beats 80 times… or for the average lungs to breathe 20 times. A minute is fairly insignificant if you think about it. We really don’t focus on the single minutes of our life. They are not accounted for in big plan of our life. They tick away and before we know it, all 2400 minutes of this day are done and we are starting on the next 2400 minutes.
So what can happen during one minute?
- 25 Americans will get a passport
- 58 Airplanes will take off around the world.
- 116 People will get married
- 11,319 UPS packages will be delivered
- 243,000 photos will be uploaded to Facebook
- 250 Babies will be born
- 106 People will die
- 360 Lightening strikes will hit somewhere on the earth
- 7,295,000,000 human hearts will beat 582,800,000,000 Continue reading
“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins…” Eph 2:1
When I look at the life I have in Jesus it is no doubt that satan wants to stop my forward
movement by filling my thoughts with “what if…” the “what ifs” of my past; what if I had made a different decision in 1998 or 2008 or 1972 or 1979. How different my life would have been. The images and thoughts are not ugly thoughts, they are not condemning thoughts. They make me want a “do-over”. They almost make me long for those days again. But do they really?
Then I read just a bit further to Eph 2:4 and I see… “But God…” But God is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much…
Every once in a while a book comes along that touches your heart. The Singing Quilt by Kathi Macias is one such book. It is not often that I read fiction, but I have to say that I did not want this book to end. I wanted to know more about the lead charecter… I wanted to follow along with her new life in Christ. Sadly though… the book came to an end.
Below is my public review of this book
The Singing Quilt by Kathi Macias
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
“Can another woman’s courage inspire the impossible? Jolissa Montoya, a shy, young Hispanic girl, believes God is calling her to work with disadvantaged children in the inner city. She is convinced that what God has spoken to her heart is impossible. Until one day when she shares her concerns with a confidante who shows her a quilt – a quilt that depicts the life of a courageous woman.” Continue reading
I just finished a book called: “Deliver Us From Evil: A Pastor’s Reluctant Encounters with the Powers of Darkness” by Don Basham.
This was a very interesting book. I had not heard of Pastor Basham prior to this. I used to think, like the Pastor originally thought, that evil cannot invade and reside within a Christian… as Light and dark… Good and evil cannot coexist in the same place. I don’t know why I thought that, I guess it’s just what I’ve been taught along the way. I do/did however believe that Christian can be influenced by evil. That satan and his minions can, and do, influence our thoughts and behaviors. Continue reading
The Prodigal: A Ragamuffin Story by Brennan Manning
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
The Prodigal – A Ragamuffin Story by Brennan Manning and Greg Garrett
Jack Chisholm is “the people’s pastor.” He is the founder and leader of a growing mega-church. His slogan… “We have got to do better”. He can do it all. He knows how to preach, teach, write, and he knows how to chastise people into performing. What he doesn’t know is… grace. But after one night of reckless behavior that causes him to loose everything that is precious to him…. He learns the meaning of Grace.
I LOVE this book! It grabbed me from page one and didn’t let go until the last page. Nothing got done around here today. I thought that perhaps it was going to be one more “formula” story about the fall and redemption of a sinner where everything ends up totally restored and smelling like roses. This book is so much better than that. Continue reading
From: Jesus Calling by Sarah Young – page 296
“You have been on a long, uphill journey, and your energy is almost spent. Though you have faltered at times, you have not let go of My hand. I am pleased with your desire to stay close to Me. There is one thing, however, that displeases Me: your tendency to complain. You may talk to Me as much as you like about the difficulty of the path we are following. I understand better than anyone else the stresses and strains that have afflicted you. You can ventilate safely to Me, because talking with Me tempers your thoughts and helps you see things from My perspective.
Complaining to others is another matter altogether. It opens the door to deadly sins such as self-pity and rage. Whenever you are temped to grumble, come to Me and talk it out As you open up to Me, I will put My thoughts in your mind and My song in your heart.” Continue reading
I’ve been spending a bit of time today going over what I call “lessons learned this month”. But today was different. As you know, I’ve been involved in an online Bible Study called “When A Woman Says Yes To God“. I started just going over what I had underlined in the first 6 chapters… pondering and praying about some of the thoughts that really struck me.
Well I didn’t get very far into Chapter 1 and I read this:
” When you look at your everyday circumstances through the lens of God’s perspective, everything changes. You come to realize that God uses each circumstance, each person who crosses your path, and each encounter you have with Him as a divine appointment. Each day counts, and every action and reaction matters.” (page 16) Continue reading