27 years ago today, she said, “I do”. Today I am blessed that she still says the same thing!
Anyone who knows me, knows that I’m a big fan of coffee!
Last Friday I posted the above picture on Instagram/Facebook with the caption, “#SadDay – I’ve been stretching out my @starbucks gift cards, but sadly today brought my balance down to $0.00. 😦 #sigh”
I can honestly say when I posted this picture, I never dreamed of what would happen later in that same day!
Early that afternoon a friend of mine from back in our LifeChurch East Valley days, Devin, sent me an email…with a Starbucks gift card attached. He didn’t want me to have to go without…I’m wondering if he remembers how I get when I don’t have my coffee…Hahaha!
Later that same afternoon, I get another email from my friend, Jerry, right here at CrossRoads Nazarene…and he too sent me a Starbucks gift card!!
I could not believe this happened…not only once, but twice in the same day. It’s just proof of God’s Love for me (and the great friends He’s blessed me with), even in the small details of life.
Today, I paid it forward, even if it was just a little bit…as I paid for my Tall Italian Roast brewed coffee, I also paid for the coffee of the person behind me in line. I was sneaky and did it without the person even knowing I had done it. I grabbed my coffee ran over to put cream and sugar in it (faster than I’ve ever done it before I might add…as I wanted to get outside before the person realized what I had done), and just as I was about to get out the door, the person yells across the store, “thank you, sir.”
I tell that part of the story, not because I’m patting myself on the back, but to remind us ALL that when God reigns down blessings, even the little things in life like a Starbucks gift card, we should always do our best to pass those amazing blessings of a God who loves us more than we could ever even truly imagine or understand on to others around us.
Enjoying this cup of java this morning as I write this blog post!
Get out there, and do something nice for someone today!!!
Today I am thankful for friends. I’ll be honest I don’t have very many of them, but I am so thankful for those friends I do have. Another brutal honesty, I’m probably not the best friend to others, that’s something that I am going to be working on over the next year. True friends are few and far between, so we should all work harder at making those friendships richer, stronger, & deeper. Yeah, again, I’m talking to myself here…
We have some friends who are treading through some difficult waters…
I talked to him today, wanted them to know we are here for them anyway they may need…
Now this old Dionne Warwick song is stuck in my head…
Keep smiling, keep shining
Knowing you can always count on me, for sure
That’s what friends are for
For good times and bad times
I’ll be on your side forever more
That’s what friends are for
I want to be true to these lyrics, real friends are always there when you need them, I hope I can truly be a real friend.
I enjoy holding the door open for people when coming in or out of a store, building, or restaurant, etc.
I don’t do it because I think it makes me special or anything, I just do it because I enjoy doing something nice and simple for other people.
I don’t do it looking for those magical words, “thank you”, but it’s surprising how many people do NOT say thank you or thanks, or even give you a smile as a thank you.
This morning on my way into the office, I stopped at Circle K to pick up an iced beverage. As I was approaching the door, and young boy, probably a 4th or 5th grader had just come out of the store. He looked my way, saw me, stopped in his tracks, turned around, grabbed the door and opened it for me to go into the store.
I was very impressed by his kindness, and I made sure to say, “thank you very much.”
When is the last time you held the door open for another person? If you haven’t done it lately, you should make an effort to do it a few times…TODAY. Don’t look for a thank you, especially don’t say, “You’re welcome” to someone who didn’t say thank you to make them feel bad. Just do it…to do it.
Spread some love and kindness.
Recently we were invited to an old friends for a social gathering.
This couple used to be one of our very best friends.
We thought they would actually be “lifelong” friends.
We haven’t heard from them, seen them, or been around them in a very long time.
It is also true that…
They haven’t heard from us, seen us, or been around us in a very long time.
It is afterall, a two-way street!
We went to the party.
It was awkward, so very awkward.
You see, in the church world, our friendships are mostly based around the fact that we all attend the same church. We see each other every weekend, the church we attend is the bond that ties us all together. I’m not sure if it’s right or wrong, it’s just the way it is. It’s not often we find lifelong friends within the church. For when someone leaves the church (because of a move, a change in life, direction, a change in churches, etc.), we, more often than not, lose the friendship we had with them. Over time we begin to lose touch, stop seeing each other, stop calling, stop connecting. The friendship shrivels up, in some cases it dies altogether, in others it just becomes a very distant friendship.
Lifelong friends are few and far between! I guess that’s the way it’s supposed to be. After all, a lifelong friend is a very special thing, and therefore it should be very tough to come by.
This couple is still a great couple, they are still great people, with a great family, and they are indeed great friends…with those whom they are still great friends with. Unfortunately, we did not end up being lifelong friends with this couple. It’s okay, it’s not a bad thing, it’s just the way life is. God brings different people into our lives for different seasons…it’s just some of those seasons don’t last as long as you thought or maybe hoped they would.
As a result, being at this couples house, just felt awkward…and I did not like the feeling one bit.
I guess the life-lesson to learn here is simple, when you do happen across people who are lifelong friends, do everything in your power to protect, build, cultivate, grow, love, and care for that friendship. They are definitely worth the effort!
Paul Waldecker and I have been friends for 21 years…WOW!
Recently he and I were chatting on Facebook when out of the blue, Paul mentions that we’ve been friends now for 21 years. It’s unbelievable that we’ve been friends that long. It certainly does not seem like that many years, am I getting that old?! I’m glad that even though we’ve been separated—living in different states for more years than we were together in Michigan—that we have remained close friends.
I’ve written another blog post that talks about Lifelong Friendships, but I’ve hesitated to post it for fear that it could be offensive to some people who I know. Maybe I’ll get the nerve to post that blog soon, but suffice it to say, lifelong friendships are far and few between…and I’m thankful that Paul and I have developed one of those rare relationships.
We met back in 1992. It was my second Sunday as the new worship pastor at Auburn Hills Christian Center, it was Paul’s first Sunday visiting AHCC. The next Sunday, Paul began playing bass for me, and we quickly became best of friends. He’s always been there for me, through thick and thin, in the good times and the bad. When I have needed a friend to lend a listening ear, Paul has always been there for me.
I am thankful to God for such a wonderful, open, and honest friendship…here’s to 21 more years Pauly!!!