Friday, March 31, 2006

365 days / 52 weeks / 12 months = 1 Year

Three hundred sixty-five days ago Lizzie moved from the security of the womb to the new world of oxygen. Cliche's speaks wisdom "I cannot believe it has been a year" and "where did the year go. What has been a lifetime for Lizzie has been only a matter of months, weeks and days for me.

This year has been a long struggle of growth for Lizzie. First to survive the birth canal journey. Then, to learn to eat with her mouth instead of having nourishment conveniently piped into her belly. Next, to deal with all the open air space rather than the warmth and snugness of the womb. And then on to eat solids, crawl, fight infection, develop immunities . . .

In one year of life, the changes, growth spurts, increase in knowledge, ability to communicate are greater than at any other point in life. A baby goes from sleepy lifeless blob to a mobile, communicating self with opinions and emotions. Amazing! As my Dad would sarcastically say with a sly grin, "isn't evolution wonderful."

Why is it that baby Christians are left alone in the nursery, without affection, food, love, stimulation, and learning? Where are the spiritual parents? Where is the community that affectionately claps, hugs and high-fives people into faith?

I have a brand new prayer request on my list. It is something that I am praying fervently. It is something quite personal. It is something that deals with life and death issues. Right now it is too personal to share. It is something that God and I are discussing and I am trying to do some more careful listening.

There are babies in your life. People hungry for the insights you have about parenting, faith, Jesus, doubt, unemployment. There are people you are around who are starving for spiritual relationship.

However, you may feel like you are spiritual baby. You may be in need of spiritual nurture. But where do you start? Whom could you go to? Well, I do not pretend to be a super parent nor full of all the answers nor perfect. However, I am "virtually" here if you want to discover more to what this life has to offer . . . real life. I do not spiritual candy, not cliche', but I am offering to help you begin a journey with someone who is a never ending resource of spiritual growth (not me by the way).

Remember: one year can provide a lifetime of growth. May our spiritual growth be like that of a new born baby. Happy birthday, my little Lizzie!

Friday, March 17, 2006

A New Friend

Yesterday, I made a new friend. I got out of my car and a guy was walking down the sidewalk. We exchanged '‘how ya'’ doings?'’ and both of us did not break stride. He replied, "“I'’ve been better.'” I stopped.

This moment could have easily passed with nothing more. We did not know each other. We were just being neighborly. But what developed was a 2 or 3 hour conversation some was spent in the parking lot and the remainder over lunch. My new friend was without hope. His girlfriend left him. The relationship looked irreparable. He had not seen his baby boy in more than a week. He had begun to doubt whether he would be allowed to see him. He pulled out yet another job rejection. He talked. I listened and asked questions. Our exchange really made my day. His whole demeanor seemed to have brightened. My spirits were lifted - I know it sounds weird - but they were lifted by talking to someone feeling hopeless.

How many times do we pass by people? How many occasions each week do we bypass someone who is hurting who needs conversation. Not counseling. Not rescuing. We need conversation and community. Pay attention to those cliche's people speak around you. Do more than simple "act friendly" be a friend.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Special Email

Recently I received an email from my wife. Actually, I regularly get emails from my wife. So, this was not a special occasion. But this email was one of those emails that was only a subject line. There was no email message. So, here for your reading pleasure is the email subject printed in its unedited entirety.

“please update your blog”

Ok, well, I am behind on blogs. My wife’s email is one of many complaints. I get the point. And now I can say that I have updated my blog with new content.