For a Heart of Service

“For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:45) It’s a pretty awesome thing, Lord, to be in Your service. It’s a lot easier to begin and run a company, even a big corporation, than it is to serve the body of Christ. As humans, we see the outward appearance, but You look at the heart.

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Greatness

I’m sure it comes as no surprise to most of us that we act out precisely what we take in. In other words, we become what we think. Long before that familiar line found its way into Psychology 101 and hyped-up sales meetings, the Bible included it in one of its ancient scrolls. It just said it in a little different way: “For as he thinks within himself, so he is” (Prov. 23:7).

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Cracks in the Wall

The longer I live the less I know for sure. That sounds like 50% heresy . . . but it’s 100% honesty. In my younger years I had a lot more answers than I do now. Things were absolutely black and white, right or wrong, yes or no, in or out, but a lot of that is beginning to change. The more I travel and read and wrestle and think the less simplistic things seem.

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Insight

Are you ready for a surprise? You blink twenty-five times every minute. Each blink takes you about one-fifth of a second. Therefore, if you take a ten-hour automobile trip, averaging forty miles per hour, you will drive twenty miles with your eyes closed. I know a fact far more surprising than that. Some people go through life with their eyes closed.

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Famine

The word hangs like an awful omen in our heads. Mentally, we picture a brutal, grotesque image. Cows’ hips protrude. Babies’ eyes are hollow. Bloated stomachs growl angrily. Skin stretches across faces tight as a trampoline. The outline of the skull slowly emerges. Joints swell. Grim, despairing stares replace smiles. Hope is gone . . . life is reduced to a harsh existence as famine takes its toll.

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Roots

There’s this tree in my front yard that gives me fits several times a year. It leans. No, it never breaks or stops growing . . . it just leans. It’s attractive, deep green, nicely shaped, and annually bears fragrant blossoms. But let a good, healthy gust give it a shove—and over it goes. Like, fast. It happened today. Right now the thing is tilted on about a forty-five degree angle towards the north.

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Battlefield Memories

On the once bloody battlefield at Saratoga there stands a towering obelisk. A 155-foot-high monument commemorative of that decisive struggle where the British made their last stand over two centuries ago. It is a solemn and sober moment as visitors stand on that windswept hill, savoring that slice of national history. In the distance are the stately Adirondacks and the Taconics.

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Quietness

It is almost 10:00, Monday night. The children are snoozing and snoring upstairs (or they should be!). Aside from a few outside noises—a passing car . . . a barking dog . . . a few, faint voices in the distance—all’s quiet on the home front. That wonderful, much-needed presence has again come for a visit—quietness. Oh, how I love it . . . how I need it.

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Of Parrots and Eagles

EAGLE THINKERS ASK THE HARD QUESTIONS, take strategic risks, search hard for the whole truth, and soar high above mediocrity. Parrot people enjoy the predictable, routine, rehearsed words of others. I’ve discovered that many churches and organizations are overrun with parrots and virtually devoid of eagles. Too harsh? You decide.

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Staying Alert

YOUR MIND IS A MUSCLE. It needs to be stretched to stay sharp. It needs to be prodded and pushed to perform. Let it get idle and lazy on you, and that muscle will become a pitiful mass of flab in a brief period of time. How can you stretch your mind? What are some good mental exercises that will keep the cobwebs away?

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