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Ringing in My Ears 
Wednesday, November 25, 2009, 07:33 AM - Extra Christy, Christmas
Posted by Administrator
Do You Hear What I Hear?

Tinnitus is common this time of year. I'm not talking about the medical condition which affects some people, like me, year round. We hear a tone. or a ringing, constantly. Sometimes the ringing is so severe it interferes with sleep and hearing.

Tinnitus is from the Latin word for "ringing". Around here Salvation Army bells are already ringing almost constantly. They call me back from my own concerns, shopping at the mall or the grocery store, to remember others. Others like those I don't see or hear in the store or mall. The poor, the homeless, the unemployed, and the disabled. The bell should be constantly ringing.

I hope you are well and warm, employed and secure this and every day. May you be thankful for all of those blessings and may the only ringing in your ears be the call to share with thanks those blessings with others.
Feast on the Words of the Lord

The time is surely coming, says the Lord God, when I will send a famine on the land; not a famine of bread, or a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord.
- Amos 8:11

The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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Another Bucket List 
Wednesday, November 18, 2009, 12:44 PM - Extra Christy
Posted by Administrator
Bucket for Life and for Others

The Bucket List is a fun movie about two senior citizens that travel the world to see and do things before they "kick the bucket". Luckily for the story, one of the men is very rich and can finance these indulgent excursions.

There is another bucket image talked about by Tom Rath and Donald O Clifton in the 2004 book How Full is Your Bucket? and popularized in children's books. The idea is that we all have an invisible bucket, not to kick but to hold good thoughts and feelings about ourselves.

We also have an invisible dipper. When used to fill the buckets of others with praise, thanks and thoughtfulness, our bucket is filled as well. But when we take from the buckets of others with mean words and harsh actions, our bucket's level of goodness is diminished as well.

This expands the golden rule to as you do to others, you do to yourself. I hope you fill someone's bucket today and not dip into theirs, so that your bucket is filled and not kicked.
Christ Pours Himself Out for Others

Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.
- Philippians 2:1-15


The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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Christian Tell 
Wednesday, November 11, 2009, 08:11 AM - Extra Christy
Posted by Administrator
You Can Tell A Christian...but not much

Two youth returned to church after about a year away. One change was that their interesting hair styles were now buzz cuts. I found out another change. Part of the reason they have been away was time at Army boot camp. They both had joined the service!

Do you wish there was an easily visible way to gauge someone's Christianity, patriotism, danger to you? In poker, one looks for a "tell" in other players. A "tell" is a visual cue that reveals how good or bad the player's thinks his or her cards are. What is a "tell" for Christian?


Many quick and easy Christian tells have been promoted, you get current lists many places and historical lists in a few places. The problem is the various lists don't match, some items even contradict one another.Maybe our youth can give us a clue for a good tell. When someone enters the service, of their nation or their savior, it involves sacrifice.

Hope someone can tell you're a Christian today, without you using words to tell them. If you're not a Christian, I hope what you see in the loving way we play with others reveals how good a hand we Christians have.

Great Love Shown in Sacrifice

No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends.
- John 15:13

The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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Give Presence  
Wednesday, November 4, 2009, 07:18 AM - Extra Christy
Posted by Administrator
Excuse me...I have to take this.

The church I serve is participating in the Advent Conspiracy, an effort to worship fully, spend less, give more and love all for Christmas.

One of their promotional phrases is "Give Presence" They encourage giving ourselves and our attention to those we love instead of presents of things. It is called relational giving where you give your full presence to someone you love instead of a closet stuffer.

Some ideas are: making plans to spend the day with the person in an activity they enjoy: (hiking, bird-watching, train spotting, a massage, road trip, campout), planning a movie night where you bring the DVD and popcorn, coupons for child-care or a game night. More ideas are at www.rethinkingchristmas.com

I hope you give the gift of your presence to those you love during the days leading up to Christmas which is the celebration of God giving his presence to us in the baby Jesus.


The first Christmas Presence

'Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel',
which means, 'God is with us.' - Matthew 1:23

The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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41 TO 9 
Wednesday, October 28, 2009, 01:24 PM - Extra Christy
Posted by Administrator
Carrying on After Death
Police officers and Firefighters usually get along, but sometimes their priorities and procedures conflict.

I was at an accident scene once when such a collision occurred. During the discussion, the police officer shared a friendly reminder that he had a gun to back up his interpretation.

Unimpressed, the fire officer immediately responded, "After me, there's 40 guys; and you only have nine bullets." As fire chaplain, and one of the forty guys, I was relieved the discussion ended without a demonstration.

All Saints Day reminds us that death doesn't stop God's purpose. Saints in the church and in our lives are examples for us to follow, carrying on their faithful purpose, even though they are no longer here to answer the call; we are.

I hope you think beyond the haunted stories of Halloween dead who are gone to the Hopeful stories that the saints have left us to live on.

Building with Saints on the Cornerstone

So he came and proclaimed peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through him both of us have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone. In him the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built together spiritually into a dwelling-place for God. - Ephesians 2:17-22


Bible quotation from The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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