To Be, or Not To Be—Kind

A Year of Being Kind blog – Wednesday, September 10, 2014

LOVE love yourself

To Be, or Not To Be—Kind

Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. Therefore, I was helpful and of service. I reposted a meme—with a toll-free telephone number and several websites underneath.

The words on the photos read as follows: “Every 40 seconds someone across the world dies from suicide. Every 41 seconds someone is left to make sense of it.”

The words beneath the photos: “Today is World Suicide Prevention Day. If you or a loved one are dealing with thoughts of suicide, please know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.

“National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-8255 (United States & Canada)
Lifeline www.lifeline.org.au (Australia)
Samaritans http://www.samaritans.org/ (United Kingdom)”

Life is precious. Life is given by God. Life is an opportunity to be of service, to be helpful and kind. But, sometimes, some people can lose hope. Hope in humanity, in society, in worthwhile activities, in meaningful employment. Feelings can be fleeting, and deceitful, and hidden. Situations can be upended in a big hurry. Other people can be detrimental, fickle, and wayward. This leaves certain individuals with what they perceive as little reason to live, to continue, much less to thrive.

Psalm 139 tells us that God knew us even before we were born. God loves us, and cares for us. God wants the best for us. Sure, we are not promised an easy road through life. Some people have a more difficult time than others. But, that doesn’t mean that God hides from us, or just leaves us all alone with no one to help us out.

Some of my thinking behind A Year of Being Kind fits in, here. The verse for September is applicable, too: Galatians 6:2 “Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.” I wanted to come alongside of people, trying to do 365 Days of Service. I wanted to ease some people’s difficulties, and be of service. (Even more than I usually am, that is.) I find today, World Suicide Prevention Day, to be immensely significant. If you or someone you know are hurting today—or tomorrow, or next week, please consider calling the number above, or going to the websites listed above. Please.

God loves you. I do, too. God holds all of us in the hollow of God’s hand. And, we are all held close in the loving, caring embrace of the Lord.

@chaplaineliza

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LOVE you are loved

Serving—with Holy Spirit Power!

A Year of Being Kind blog – Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Pentecost,  Alexander Sadoyan

The Pentecost,
Alexander Sadoyan

Serving—with Holy Spirit Power!

So there I was—at an evening meeting several years ago in a public building. Out of nowhere, the lights flickered. Went out! And stayed out. Immediately, everyone inside the building filed out. As a safety precaution, of course.

But—what happened? Was it a brown-out? Did something happen to a transformer attached to the electrical supply in the neighborhood? Everyone wanted the power supply to get back on line!

I narrated the story of Pentecost this morning, in church. I told about Jesus ascending to heaven, and then—what? Nothing! Not a thing, for many days. But at last, when the band of beleaguered believers was all gathered together in one place, Pentecost happened! The Holy Spirit came with mighty power! The disciples became courageous overnight. And the Holy Spirit turned the disciples inside out and upside down. Life—as they knew it before—was never the same again.

As I preached this morning, I honestly felt like I was serving the congregation in a deep, meaningful, wonderful manner. Opening the Word of God. I’ve felt that in the past, and it is such an awesome, stunning feeling to have. Almost like Isaiah falling on his face before God Almighty in the Temple (in Isaiah 6). However, today had a different feel to it. This morning, it was almost like I was uncovering something rich, something precious. Something of immense value! And then, turning to the friends out in the pews. Showing them the treasure of immense value! Offering them the opportunity to come along on this tremendous journey.

What about you? How has your journey through life been going? This small congregation has had its ups and downs, but I felt that this particular message from Acts 2 was just exactly what I ought to preach to this congregation. I hope and pray that any time people consider this chapter in Acts that they also consider the tremendous opportunity that God is holding out to all of outs. Just like a treasure, a rich and beautiful thing.

I want to serve. I have been praying for opportunities to help, whatever way I can. In this case, I will try my darnedest to get out the Good News. And if I can serve, be helpful, and be kind along the way? All fantastic ways to follow God. And God’s Good News!

@chaplaineliza

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