Category Archives: Humor

How much do you own?

divine real estate

I need to share a story, totally stolen from my Pastor’s sermon yesterday, which I’m sure he stole from someone else’s sermon which they stole, and so on and so forth; just a vicious cycle of thievery but a great illustration none the less…

There was a wealthy, farmer in Texas who owned a large and productive ranch but he didn’t know Jesus. He invited the local pastor over one day, and desiring to impress the minister he walked him across his well-manicured lawn. He pointed to the east and told the man of God, “Look out there Pastor, as far as you can see to the east, I own it!” Then he pointed to west, and proclaimed again, “And Pastor, as far as you can see to the west, that is mine too,” he boasted proudly! He did likewise to the north and to the south.

The old Pastor without hesitation said, “That’s great!” But pointing skyward he asked “But how much property do you own there?”

There is wonderful humor and great truth in that tale. It will no doubt be one of my favorites for a long time. I get in a whiny way and wish that I had better, and more and greater and in reality I have all that I need and so much more than most that I’m ashamed that I ever complained. The Pastor’s message was right on time for me… they usually are. I’m sure I’m not the only one that gets their eyes so focused on the earth they lose sight of Heaven.

I turned 52 this year, it seems but yesterday that I was 16 and now I minister to 16 year old who refer to me as “Miss Shari” like a saintly old grandmother. Actually that’s a slight exaggeration, they are kind, but it’s quite apparent that the generation gap is looking more like a canyon. My heart breaks for them… because the world is so competitive for their soul. If it competes for mine the way it does at my age, I know, with as young as they are the competition is much steeper.

The world tells them they need the best car, the biggest house, the greatest technology and it’s wrapped up with a bow waiting for them to launch towards it, all with the intention of taking them further and further away from the will and way of God. It is my job as well as every other Sunday School Teacher and Youth Minister to draw their minds to Christ, which we know to be the greater wealth… but Satan is a sly dog.

So the farmer story hit too close home for me because I had turned into a whiny, sniveling brat who had desires that were obviously not of God or He would have already given them to me. And I’m pretty sure He doesn’t give them to me because I have the attention span of a puppy in a room full of squeaky toys. True story. The more bells there are ringing in my life the less time I spend with the giver of all. The difference between the farmer and I is that I own as far skyward as you can see, but I forget to brag about it.

So today I’m looking up… to where my riches lie.

In the book of Luke 24 verses 51-52, Jesus is traveling the last few steps on earth during this era of time:

And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven. And they worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:

He’s coming back folks! The disciples knew it and they not only returned to Jerusalem with great joy, they spread that great joy. Tell someone today about the real estate deal of a life time that they’ll miss out on if they don’t know Jesus!

Ten Things About Me

Sometimes I feel like the guy on the left when I see how Christian’s fail in the game of life.

It’s a thought that’s been on my mind lately as I’ve witnessed multiple people upset over a comment from somebody whose mouth was engaged when their brain wasn’t. If I got mad every time someone hurt my feelings I would be mad every day… I just don’t have time for that. This is not a self-righteous rant, because I do fail to follow my own advice pretty often, I don’t get mad every day, but I have my days.

It always shocks me the entitlement of some people who actually believe they’re “doing you a favor” by pointing out an obvious flaw, feel compelled to belittle you or are just plain crass when it comes to social etiquette. And Christians are often the worst! Because, after all, they’re called to go out into all the world and make them feel inferior… or so it would seem. That must have been in one of the funny versions of the bible, because I’ve never read it in the King James that that’s how you win souls to Christ.

Here are 10 Rules I “try” to live by:

  1. If I discuss politics, I make sure I’m in the company of like-minded people. (Most everyone’s mind is made up. You won’t change it.) #WhoTiesThePresidentsShoes – I assumed we were like minded.
  2. I don’t offer unsolicited advice. #JustListen
  3. If someone doesn’t dress like me I realize that I don’t dress like them… we’re even. (Even if you made fun of them inside your head… God heard.) #PunkyBrewsterRocks #NoFashionPolice
  4. If someone is obnoxiously rude I clinch my lips together like the “church lady” and say nothing, because you can’t fix mean with mean. #YouCantFixStupid either.
  5. Some days I’m totally right… I’ll let them find out in Heaven. #CommonSenseTrumpsADegree
  6. I’m saved by faith, not by my Baptist Denomination. #ChristAlone
  7. If I meet a drunk, I remember I’m a sinner. #SinIsSin
  8. Children are adults in training, and too often adults act like children. #ForbidThemNotToComeUntoMe #LiveWhatYouPreach
  9. Don’t resent what nobody else will do, do it with a smile. #BlessedOpportunities #GodsFavor
  10. Only share burdens with the closest of friends and only rarely, else you become the burden. #DontWhine

Verse for the day: Proverbs 19:11

The discretion of a man deferreth his anger; and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.

To Shari Quote it; “Think before you get upset, “What would God Do and What have you done?” [contact-form][contact-field label=’Name’ type=’name’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Email’ type=’email’ required=’1’/][contact-field label=’Website’ type=’url’/][contact-field label=’Comment’ type=’textarea’ required=’1’/][/contact-form]

A Conversation from the Back Seat

A post on my Facebook wall yesterday morning of the A&W Root Beer Stand brought floods of memories of my own times with my parents at the drive in hamburger stand. What a treat to get to eat in the car! Now it’s the story of my life as I travel the roads of West Virginia. My favorite A&W story isn’t mine, it’s the story of Franklin Graham (Billy Graham’s son) from his book “Rebel with a Cause.” As a child he was picking on his sisters in the back seat of the car as and having been warned by his mother (Ruth Graham) that she was going to put him in the trunk if he didn’t stop, he wasn’t really concerned.  They were on the freeway in four lanes of traffic (heading to A&W or a like place) so he “knew” she wouldn’t stop there.  So he continued until he felt the car swerve out of traffic, across three lanes and on to the berm. She got out, pulled him out, and proceeded to put him in the trunk. He said he loved it. There were all kinds of toys in there. Car jacks and tools and such! When they got to A&W he thought, great, now I can get out. He hears him mom order their food, waits a while, hears the waitress return and then hears the car door open. Ruth Graham opens the trunk, hands Franklin his burger and, and shuts the lid again where he enjoyed his lunch and rode the trip back home. Lesson learned. Don’t doubt your Mom.

I’m not advocating this method of child rearing!  The Welfare department would be knocking on your door before the day was out and probably should be; that was dangerous! But it just goes to show how times have changed. We’ve learned some lessons in raising children and we’ve failed in many other respects. In church it’s no different. We’ve learned much over the years but by the same token many of the old paths have long since been forgotten, traded for a newer shinier path that may or may not show you to Jesus. Church discipline is all but a thing of the past because the church no longer has the right to interfere in the lives of the members.

Well, for the record, God’s still calling the church to hold its members accountable. No… I’m not going anywhere with this. I really don’t know why it’s on my heart this morning, I only know it is. And if it only touches one person this morning, giving them the desire to walk the old path, then it’s been worth it. The world is watching… we’re supposed to be different.

We’re the kids in the back seat… not a good idea to run your mouth to the Father.

Does religion cloud your relationships?

There was once a man named Ralph who had gotten saved one day before his death. Upon arrival in Heaven one of the angels was assigned to give him the grand tour, and Ralph was in awe at the sights, they were indeed beyond words. As they entered the City the mansions were so very unique, obviously made exclusively to the tastes of the one who dwelled there. But there seemed to be a similarity to groups of mansions so Ralph questioned the angel about it. To which the angel explained, “That group of mansions over there belongs to the Pentecostals, they’re loud and we had to put a little distance between them and the others. Now, this group over here is the Catholics, they insisted on all the gold trim, and when Jesus shows up it just about puts your eyes out. Now the group in the middle are Methodists, they wanted their lawns to butt up against everyone else’s; that way they could cross over to their side if they thought they weren’t right about something. Ralph noticed a group of mansions a great, great distance apart from the others, “Who are they,” he ask? The angel shushed him and said they’d talk about it later, but for now they had to be very quiet when they passed by, and they by no means could stop and visit on the way to Ralph’s place. They tiptoed past the mansions and made it to a large gate, once inside the angel told Ralph he was free to speak. “Why did we have to be so quiet,” asked Ralph? The angel rolled his eyes and said, “Because those were the Baptists, and they still believe they’re the only one’s here.”

Ralph smiled, he’d met several of them before getting saved. He understood. Now Ralph looked really confused. “What’s wrong,” the angel asked? Ralph said, “I just got saved yesterday, I hadn’t had a chance to join any church. Where am I going to live?!”

Don’t panic, nobody’s homeless in Heaven; and your mansion… well, because you haven’t had religion to cloud your relationships, you’ll be living right next door to Jesus.

Yes, I’m a Baptist, and praise God I’m a Baptist with a sense of humor. I don’t think we’ll be the only ones in Heaven. I do stand solid on the doctrine of my church, else I’d have no foundation or assurance that I’ll be in Heaven. I’m grateful for that. But because other denominations don’t believe like I do, doesn’t stop me from fellowshipping with them. I believe that was a lesson Peter learned in Acts 10:44-48 ~

While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost. For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter, Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.

There’s a few key points we all have to agree on

1.      Salvation in Jesus only – we are redeemed, bought back, by the blood of Jesus.

2.      Virgin Birth – Not up for debate, else He would not have been fully God.

3.      We serve a crucified, risen on the third day Lord, Who has victory over life and death.

4.      The Holy Spirit dwells “in” the believer. If you’re saved He’s in there, and there should be evidence.

5.      Baptism is key, not to salvation, but to Spiritual growth. There are no secret service Christians, if you’ve been saved you have the desire within you to outwardly prove that. You may squelch it, but it’s in there. I know because I fought that battle and won.

You may want to add more to the list, and that’s okay. I just awoke this morning with it heavy on my heart that we are so busy being Baptist’s or Methodists or whatever denomination you claim, that we forget we’re supposed to be telling people about Jesus. Don’t let religion cloud your relationships.

That was my first attempt at joke writing, or actually rewriting an original thought. So, how’d I do?

Me and my $4 Faith

$100

Postmaster Bob, in charge of undeliverable mail, received an envelope addressed to “God,” written in very shaky penmanship. Bob curiously opened the letter and read: “Dear God, its Ruth. As I’m sure you know I’m 84 years old and I recently lost my purse and any money that I had. Mother’s day is in a few weeks and I had already invited a few friends over for dinner after church on that Sunday. Without a miracle from you, I’m going to have to cancel. If it’s not too much to ask, could you please replace the $100.00 that I lost so that we can have our Mother’s day gathering as planned?”

Bob was so touched by the letter that he shared it with his coworkers and together they dug in their wallets and came up with $96.00 to send to Ruth. That entire day Bob’s heart overflowed, knowing God had used him to help Ruth out.

A few weeks passed by and another letter to “God” arrived. Bob now recognized Ruth’s shaking scribe and quickly opened it up. Bob read… “Dear God. Thank you so much for Your help with our Mother’s day party, it was a huge success! However… it was $4.00 short. Mostly likely those thieves that work in the post office have Your money.

God didn’t answer quite the way Ruth had intended. I’m sure her party lacked nothing, and if only she’d recognized the miracle that had taken place on her behalf, her celebration would have been that much greater!

A recent miracle of my own had me feeling a tad like Ruth. God answered my prayer, but I didn’t feel that I was “fully delivered” from my woes. I was in a “Thank You Jesus, but…” kind of mode. God had delivered me! If only I could get in the flesh without chastisement, I’d tell you. Please just take my word for it. But… because life wasn’t perfect, I was feeling a little short changed. I needed my $4.00. Oh… I feel nauseous to even say it. I mean God was soooooooooooooooooooooo Good to me. But I want to be honest, because perhaps you’ve been where I am, or you will be one day. And then today God spoke to me through His Word and I’m so grateful.

Isaiah 55:8-9 ~ For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.

God’s vantage point on my life is incomprehensive to me. His ways are not my ways, and His ways are never $4.00 short. I don’t know why Ruth received a $96.00 miracle instead of a $100.00 one. I have a feeling the $4.00 came along, right on time because God is not a 96% God, is a 100% God!

All I can say is “I’m human.”Sometimes I get in the flesh and it’s never good. I’m so grateful for His forgiveness of my abundance of shortfalls including $4.00 faith. Amen.