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Living Generously

Reaching Out

What does someone’s soul look like, really? What do the heart, motivation, values and beliefs… all of those things… really look like? We’re in a culture that so easily masks these things because we have a perception of what we believe others need to see.   A homeless person who is wearing worn, tattered clothes…

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Two are Better than One

If you have kids, you might remember the nursery rhyme that goes something like this: “The animals went in two by two, Hurrah! Hurrah! The elephant and the kangaroo, Hurrah! Hurrah! The animals went in two by two, the elephant and the kangaroo.” Pretty catchy lyrics, huh?! The two by two part reminded me of…

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Showing Kindness: Pursuing Love Not Things

Pursuing Love As Americans, we are told that we have the right to pursue happiness. The Declaration of Independence states that man has three unalienable rights: “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” It is a fact that Americans are constantly in the pursuit of happiness. As a nation, we think that money, good looks, things, a secure…

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3 Ways to Help Us Love Like Jesus

You know how CEOs and Boards of Directors make vision statements for their corporations or businesses? They do so to maximize effectiveness and create higher profitability within their company. What if we, as believers, followed that lead and made vision statements for our walk with Christ to help us love like Jesus, specifically how we interact…

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Want to love like Jesus?

“Honey, would you go upstairs in storage and get me the big red suitcase?” “I’m in the middle of something. Can it wait until after lunch?” When I’m working in my home office, I’m always in the middle of something! Historically, when asked for this kind of favor, I would go into a long sigh…

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What Joey Feek taught me about loving others

Few people are able to make such a sizable impact and touch lives in both the secular world as well as the faith-based community, but one woman was successful in doing just that, the late country music singer and song writer, Joey Feek. Prior to the past few weeks, when her touching story became headline…

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The Six Proven Happiness Boosters

We have combed through all the scientific studies we could find on happiness to lift out the best of what we know works to make and maintain happiness in marriage. And we’ve settled on a half dozen happiness boosters that are sure to move the needle in your relationship. These are the six dials we…

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Making Happy Together (part 1)

It was a beautiful day in Chicago.  On June 30, 1984 our closest friends flanked the concrete steps of our church and tossed rice in the air as we made our way to the waiting car adorned with nothing less than the obligatory “Just Married” sign hanging off the back.  We could not have been…

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Transformational vs Transactional Culture

Most of our culture is built around the idea of transaction: “I will do this for you if you do this for me.” The focus of our transactional culture is self. It is rooted in the deep belief that happiness is achieved in focusing on self-good. In contrast, the focus of the “abundant life” Jesus…

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Love More Like Jesus

In our student ministry we recently finished our big fall event. The theme we chose for the event was #LoveLikeJesus (Hashtag Love Like Jesus). Now in all honesty we chose this theme because I knew that I would be involved in this blog, but at the same time I don’t know how I feel about…

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This is the primacy of our faith

Meet Darryl I received my first Bible at the age of five, a picture Bible. I remember growing up loving the stories in Scripture, learning them, and kind of contending to the faith a little bit like Jude. I took it with somewhat of a prophetic chip on my shoulder. When I went on to seminary,…

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The hypocritical Christian: #loveLikeJohn

I have filters I operate with. They’ve been there for a long time and they are hard to avoid. When I’m not thinking about them, they slip into place and force me to view everything from their perspective. They prevent me from seeing you well and they even prevent me from seeing me well. I’m…

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Just say no to endorphins

Well, that might be overstating things a little, but I am concerned about a chemical dependency on endorphins to keep a relationship healthy. Endorphins are neurotransmitters, which in English means chemicals that pass signals from neuron to neuron. There are quite a few different kinds, but I am specifically referring to the feelings of euphoria…

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A stage set for love: pursuing love

Pursuing Love Who hasn’t heard the saying, “More is caught than taught?” In other words, you can teach me something, but if you show me something instead, I experience it along with you. To see you living it out before me somehow makes it vivid and authentic to me. Your living story seeps in around…

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Dear magic of Christmas, I miss Christ

Of all the times of the year, Christmas seems to be one when I’m most tempted to convince myself and others that I can stuff more into my days than reality allows. I cram the calendar full of activities and celebrations because there are so many meaningful opportunities. After all, it seems that when you…

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Hate is not the opposite of love

If the opposite of up is down, and the opposite of right is left, then the opposite of love is hate, right? Not so fast. The opposite of love is NOT hate. Why? Because with the word Love, people have feelings and think about another person. And with hate, it is same with different intentions. So the opposite…

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Conditional friendship

When I was a teenager, I had a friend named Adam. He was an odd kinda guy who was a loner – but a good friend. We hung out a lot, and our parents drove us to events and such frequently. But it was a conditional friendship. Over time, he started acting differently. He started wearing different clothes,…

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