Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Stupid Is As Stupid...Posts

   
Photo credit to T. Asleson Facebook post #wvflooding


Normally I don't post more than once a week so I hope y'all don't mind. This hasn't exactly been a normal week here in WV so here goes.

I want to share with y'all a hard lesson I learned a long time ago:  some people's opinion matters, others just don't. Just because someone can talk or type doesn't give them the right to feed into our lives.

It is our personal responsibility to filter the junk out, get ticked for a second (or ten) consider the source, hit 'delete' and move on.

Rehashing, retweeting, or repeating stupidity only gives it more power....we oughten not do that! But I'm just as guilty of doing this as the next gal so it ain't like I'm just spouting off about something I haven't beat myself up for.

We need to remember that ignorant people laughing at a natural disaster are the same ones who have no self respect or common sense, and I believe they'll get theirs in the end...in the meantime, we need to stay #WVSTRONG during this time of turmoil in the Mountain State. With God's help, we will walk, sweat, and push through this...together.

Proverbs 15:21 says: Folly is a joy to him who lacks sense, but a man of understanding walks straight ahead.

In Christ with love and compassion  (and more than a little disgust toward a few stupid social media posts but proud of the tenacity and compassion of our State),

Coach Kelly

Sunday, June 26, 2016

The WEST VIRGINIA Way

Photo Courtesy of B. Mathias

Psalm 39:7 
"And now, Lord, what do I wait for? 
My hope is in You."

This past week, a lot of memories came rushing back to native West Virginian's. Memories of total devastation, death, and stuff we lost in other floods. We remembered how water has changed our state’s natural terrain; and we recalled stories our parents told us of other floods too. And none of us had the power to stop these memories any more than we could have stopped the rain.  I still remember the smell of 1985's flood mud and hearing boulders and homes crashing together as they made their way down stream…some things are never forgotten. But let me be honest, I've only been safely trapped in my home by flood waters without power and water, watched bridges float away like twigs and cars bobbing down the Potomac River. So I can only imagine what folks are actually going through. But my heart aches for them and our state. So other than the horrible loss of our neighbor's life in 1996 and my stupid decision to try going to work, hauling my daughters over that same flooded road, what I have to give my fellow West Virginian’s is prayer, compassion and a few donations. 

Our 2016 devastation swamped news feeds on social media and national news. Most are calling for prayers and asking "How/where can I help?" or "Hey WV, we are on our way." Oh! Since cowards seem to find nerve to spout off behind an electronic shield, there have been a few ignorant posts, as well as some that just weren't thought out before hitting the Tweet button. But here in W. Va. we believe that some folks' opinions matter and, well to be honest, some just don't. So we took a mental note of how pathetic those folks proved themselves to be and thanked God that they don’t live here. Then we picked up our donations and bent our backs to help our neighbors in need.

There is no other point to this post than this: West Virginian’s are tough. We are armed with faith. We have our neighbor’s back. We care more about others than our own personal comfort. And we will get through this because we trust in God to see us through. Our state will be hurting and remembering this for decades – the rest of our lives really…But when it happens again, you can bet your bottom-taxable-dollar, that we will come out in droves with bleach, rags, water, and fun packs for our little ones, to help each other as any good neighbor will do. As my dad would have said: It’s the W. Va. way.


#WVFlooding; #WVStrong

In Christ with love and compassion,
Coach Kelly

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

HOW TO SEEK GOD...FOR REAL

SOMETIMES I think we make seeking God too hard. Here lately, I've really been thinking about what that means. And I was striving to figure it out.  I share my personal experiences because I know that God uses real life and ordinary people to encourage one another (and since I like to be encouraged, I figure I may as well encourage too).  So, this morning I walked over to my office during that pretty hard rainstorm (which I loved!), sat down with my coffee and Bible then started reading Matthew 21 and 22. Can I just share that in these chapters JESUS was having a pretty tough go of it!  First the temple thieves (He threw a holy fit and kicked them all out), then the fruitless fig tree (He cursed that thing to death), and then the Holier Than Thous started in on Him (boy did He ever put them in their place).

We've all had seasons like this, where if it can go wrong it will go wrong. So I was literally just sitting with my Bible on my lap thinking about JESUS when this prayer and these scriptures came to mind (and I soon realized they were the answers to what I was trying to figure out). For real, I believe this prayer is how we can seek and find God when we just let the Holy Spirit do His job (He brings scripture and 'unction' to us when we are still before God).

Have a blessed day y'all -
In Christ with Love and Compassion
Coach Kelly

My morning prayer:

Saturday, June 11, 2016

LOOKING FOR LOVE

Earlier this week a scripture and old country music song, "Looking for Love," came to mind. The verse- Psalm 63:1[a] "You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water." The song talks about how we look for love (acceptance and belonging) in all the wrong places.

Earlier today my grandkids were "building a fort" using leftover wood from some deconstruction around our place. I overheard one of them say "Look what you did! You ruined it." But when I tried to help, the 5, 3 and 2 years olds quickly told me "We've got this Mamm, we don't need your help." Hey, I didn't mind, I was swinging and enjoying watching them apply reason to their project! But they reminded of how many times we try to do things on our own, messing it up, and then end up blaming God for our mess. How many times have you heard "Where was God when...?" or "Why did God allow this to happen?"  Lots and lots huh? Yeah...me too. I've thought it myself a time or two.

So I sat on the swing and watched as the grandkids stacked every piece of salvageable wood they could get to stay in place on their fort. They were very happy with their effort. But I know that the wind or our dog will knock it down in no time flat. Back to square one with a mess to clean up before they can get started again.

And isn't this a lot like our relationship with God at times? We know that He put the answers a lot of our questions in the Bible...but forget to look there.  Going to church for the support and friendship of fellow believers is declining across America while social hangouts have no problem being filled up.  Yet it isn't the local barkeep that is expected to come into a hospital room to pray or give final rights...nope...that's some preachers job.  Yet that barkeep knows more about some people than any preacher ever will.  Just ironic that it is God getting cussed out for not being there.

I had serious reservations about posting this because I don't like to offend folks so if it does, maybe you should consider where it is you are looking for love? The God-shaped hole within each of us screams to be filled up; but the only One who can do that and leave us satisfied is God Himself.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

FOOLISH

Photo Credit: D. Kelly
@ Pendleton Co., WV


I was sitting at my desk talking with my boss. He was a nice guy, raised in church, and a self-proclaimed agnostic. We had lots of conversations about faith, God, church...and one of his favorite things to get on to me about was my faith. And every once in a while, he would try to trip me up. Knowing me, I'd get a deer in the headlights look, what he said would sink in, and it was on! He was respectful toward me regarding my beliefs, and I to him regarding is ill-gotten unbelief. I'd apologize to him for gossiping or losing my temper, and he'd laugh. It was all good.  And I remember thinking that I should keep my mouth shut about my faith, but I'm built to keep quiet about that.

About that "F" word. I was raised to believe that this was a horrible word and I raised my children with this same belief; this is one word that simply doesn't roll off our tongues. So now you know why of all the conversations we had in that office about faith, God, and Jesus, all those politically incorrect office conversations, this one in particular comes to mind. It was the day I inadvertently called my boss a fool. The climax of the conversation went something like this: Bossman: "You really believe this stuff don't you?" Me: "I'd be a fool not too, and my momma didn't raise no fool."  I'll never forget the way he looked at me, turned on his heel, and went back into his office, leaving me to think "Where in the world did that come from?"  Although, technically, I didn't actually call him a fool; but from a believer to an agnostic...I'm pretty sure its the same difference.

Finally the point to this post! In 2000 something, I was the recipient of a college-wide award and they asked former supervisors for comments. They were humbling and positive, but the only one I really remember was his. "[Dreama] is down to earth with a pure Christian heart." I was stunned. This coming from a man who had seen me lose my temper, gossip, and yes, call him the "F" word. And I stood there, once again, like a deer in the headlights, wondering why he would say that. How could he see Jesus in me when for years, he'd seen the 'real me'?  I could have turned him completely away from seeing Jesus in anyone, anywhere. And then I got it. Because I'm not smart enough to be anyone other than just me, my Christian persona wasn't damaged by being myself. He saw Christ in me because my words and actions matched more often than they didn't. I never tried to be a perfect anything, just a practicing Christian. He saw repentance through the apologies I made after I messed up. He saw Jesus shining through my mistakes when I felt remorse for sinning. I hope y'all don't think I am trying to justify occasional, on-purpose sins, that's not my intent. My intent is to encourage you that when you, too, make foolish mistakes or choices, you seek God's grace and forgiveness. That you practice Christianity, not sin, but when you do, that you'll show the entire process of what it takes to reflect Jesus: fall - say I'm sorry - get back up again - keep going.

If you find yourself struggling with being more human than you can handle from time to time, I encourage you to find scripture that will help you come to terms with it. And remember that the Apostle Paul had a thorn in his flesh that he couldn't pray away; he had to learn to deal with it. Who knows, maybe like him, you can use your weakness to show others how you overcome instead of just how you make mistakes? For me personally, I still regret calling a highly educated, successful man the "F" word, but if he can still see Jesus in me...I'll take it!

Have a blessed SUNDAY y'all...Satan wiped away Saturday's original post this morning - so this one's not exactly the same but close

AIN'T GOD GOOD Y'ALL?

In Christ with love and compassion,

Coach Kelly

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