Archive

Monthly Archives: December 2009

Crazy Love

When I was growing up I didn’t really enjoy reading. It wasn’t until I started sailing out of Boston through the Gulf of Maine I really got into reading. That was before computers, DVD players, and Direct TV. I spent hours in the rack off watch reading. Mostly action novels but every now and then some self help stuff. My Christian walk wasn’t much of a walk back then and to truthfully honest it was more like a crawl.

Books have come and gone since then. Some college courses and forced reading, ESPN Magazine and Men’s Health, The Bible, and my Max Laccado stuff. However, I was challenged recently by a young deckhand at work, Kevin Buttrey, to pick up a book called Crazy Love, by Francis Chan. For a young guy to be so fired up and passionate about a book I thought I’d give it a try. I did some research, purchased the book and a DVD study guide to go along with it and we’ll see what happens.

I’ve read the foreword and preface and have come to this conclusion: I’ll either be totally convicted and transformed or miss the message and continue to live a mediocre Christian life. It’s my desire to share my thoughts with you as I move through the 10 chapters. I don’t know where we’ll end up but it might be fun. Until next time…

God Bless,
Vernon

Can’t Take ‘Em Back

“Oh Pam, those glasses make you look so ugly!” Micheal Scott spewed as he entered the reception area. I’m not really a fan of The Office but I just so happened to be flipping through the channels while pondering this subject – Our Words.

If you ask my wife, “What’s one thing that gets you husband into trouble?” she would correctly answer, “His mouth.” I have the uncanny sense of seeing things black and white and sometimes lack the common sense to keep to myself. If I had a dollar for everytime I said something, made a crack, took a poke, basically said something I shouldn’t have I’d be a very wealthy man.

The Book of Proverbs in The Bible is filled with wisdom and most of the sayings contrast to sides of an issue. For the most part one is good and the other not so much. In the quote above the guy who speaks “rashly” does damage just like a sword. Truth is our words hurt and as the saying goes “cut like a knife.” The thing is “rashly” doesn’t neccesarily mean hurtful. It can be thoughtless babbling, chatter, or unadvised speech.

The contrast to rashly is “wise…truthful” speech. The Bible says words like that can bring healing and help establish you. My dad always said, “Your only as good as your word.” I know that mostly applies to telling the truth but it can apply to your character as well.

In the New Testament the Apostle Paul instructs believers to use their words to encourage and edify one another. Even if you aren’t a believer and think the Bible is “bunk” the advice is priceless. Doesn’t everyone desire some encouragement? The compliment that makes you feel you really matter. The kind word that makes things alright when so much is wrong. And then there’s edification. We all need to be built up and strengthened and sometimes there’s nothing better than our words. So choose your words and let them be filled with “salt” so they’ll leave the person they fall on thirsting for more.

Recently my words have adversley affected the lives of others. As a Barge Captain I have to evaluate and acces the abilities of others. In my line of work things have to be black or white and any grey could cause damage, pollution, or even death. My accessments were truthful and with these evaluations people further up the food chain have made decisions that have changed lives. Don’t live in the grey but choose your words carefuly…can’t take ’em back.

God Bless,
Vernon

Where Do Dreams Go?

Where do our dreams and desires go? You know, when we are just kids we have dreams of being pro athletes, doctors, ballerinas, or even the President. I was just like that…except the ballerina part.

I can remember like it was yesterday some 40 years ago. A 5 year-old kid when my dad brought home my first football uniform. It was the New York Jets – green, helmet, shoulder pads, the whole schpeel. He would throw the ball to me. I would dive, run, jump, tackle, and get tackled. I would even throw it to myself and tackle myself. Don’t laugh you did the same thing. I was going to NFL.

Dreams changed and so did sports. I spent some years growing up in Hawaii and there was no pee-wee football there. There was baseball and surfing. Hit a few dingers in little league and catch a couple big waves and all of the sudden the Major League was the dream. Seemed to be the routine growing up; get really good at something and never take it to the next level. Call it lack of opportunity or just circumstance, who knows. God knows.

The Bible is clear when it comes to what God knows. He knows everything and He knows the desires of our heart. However, those desires will not come to pass unless we do our share. As I look back at my adult years I really haven’t done my share. That’s probably why I lived for years with out any big dreams. It’s been put one foot in front of the other, try to make a living, provide the best way I can for my family. Regardless or the endeavor I have undergone, I have done the best job I could do…almost to a fault.

Until recently the action words in the Psalm quoted above have not been 100% valid in my life. Oh sure, as a believer, I “trust” the Lord, and I have “committed” to his ways but there’s always been a little me that has remained in control. Recently I watched a worship service online (have to that on the barge) from Andy Stanley’s North Point Church. It revolved around work and what we do and why. But there was a quote, “The way to dream big is to get out of the way and let God dream for you.” That’s what I’ve done. For the first time in a very long time I have a dream. It’s a dream God placed in me and if will trust, delight, and commit “He will do it.”

God Bless,

Vernon

Getting Started

Wow, I’m actually going to start a blog. Go figure. I suppose it might be a lot like keeping a diary of sorts but we’ll have to see where it goes.

Here’s what I would like my blog to convey: My thought and ideas as I journey through life with my Lord, and my family, and my experiences. I spend an exorbitant amount of time away from home and often times alone and it’s during these times of reflection “things” come to me that might just be worth sharing. Hopefully you might enjoy some of my rants.

So, allow me some time to figure out how all this works and hopefully I’ll have some viable food for thought in a day or two.

God Bless,
Vernon