Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Snow Scene

About half an hour ago I looked out my office window (at home) and saw this stunning scene.  

I guess snow isn't so bad after all.

God's colour scheme sure beats anything that man (or woman) could dream up.

When God gets out His divine paintbrush we sit back and marvel.

What does the atheist think or feel when he or she witnesses the beauty of nature/creation?  

Who do they thank?

"For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse." - Romans 1:20 (NIV) 

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Two Heroes

Gary Carter
In the corner of my office sit two baseball bats. Both have special stories behind them. Both belonged to heroes of mine whose lives are presently going in opposite directions.

Gary Carter, Hall of Fame catcher, gave me one of his bats during the 1976 season while playing for the Montreal Expos. As a result of the special friendship forged with Carter an outreach to professional athletes, Epistle Sports Ministries, was born.

Now, over 35 years later Gary Carter is battling for his life with stage 4 brain cancer taking its toll on this fine man. Our prayers go up on behalf of Gary, his wife Sandy and his incredible family.

The other bat belonged to Mike Matheny, one of the finest men I had the pleasure of meeting in the game of baseball. Matheny only spent one season with the Toronto Blue Jays (1999) but we became good friends. One Sunday following the chapel service Mike presented me with a beautiful black Louisville Slugger bat with a very personal inscription written with a silver Sharpie. There’s a story behind that bat but I’ll leave that for another time.

Earlier this week Mike Matheny was named manager of the World Champion St. Louis Cardinals taking over from Tony LaRussa who retired after leading the Cards to their World Series victory. As one headline stated, “Matheny is short on managing experience but long on character”. He is a fine, godly man. So is Gary Carter.

Mike Matheny
Two bats, two godly men, two divergent courses of life. One wonders why God allows such a special husband, father, grandfather, friend as Gary Carter to go through this horrendous struggle for his life. “Why Gary?”, I mumbled last night. “Why him?” Meanwhile Mike Matheny is realizing his dream. Managing the Cardinals for whom he played and coached.

God has His reasons for allowing these circumstances to intersect with the lives of His people. Somehow, through it all, God will receive glory and lives will be impacted for eternity.

The two bats are a constant reminder of the blessing that these two men have brought to my life. Please pray for both of them. They both are facing challenges that seem immense but “with God all things are possible.”  

Friday, November 11, 2011

Don't Forget

My friend Greg Asimakoupoulos has written another excellent poem.  

Check this one out:

Marking Time on Veterans' Day

The cadence of a grateful heart

A grassy field of markers and a multitude of flags
call attention to those veterans who are gone.
'Neath the sod they sleep in silence waiting for the reveille
when old Gabriel trumpets resurrection's dawn.

As I wander through a graveyard on this cold November day,
I am warmed by countless names that catch my eye.
They belong to men and women who obeyed their Uncle's call
and then served our nation proudly till they died.

Each (in uniform allegiance) pledged unflaggingly to serve
freedom's cause no matter where that need might be.
And because they did, we're vested in both rights and privileges
that define the fabric of democracy.

Without speaking I bear witness to these heroes of the past
through the cadence of my grateful beating heart.
Marking time I count my blessings for the legacy they left
as I hear their plea for me to do my part.