there's a plank in my eye

I tend to have moments (more often then I would really like to admit) when I complain/vent/whine/gossip (GASP!) about people that I interact with. The unfortunate thing is that nearly every time I complain/vent/whine/gossip about people, and the things they do, the real issue at hand is myself, not others.

The truth is, I'm a selfish individual. I prefer to think of myself first and foremost. Most of the time I'm more then willing to admit this fact about myself, although sometimes I hide behind false humility. Somehow in my mind I come up with a reason as to why I'm justified in what I'm saying about others and suddenly my complaining/venting/whining/gossiping doesn't seem so bad, but in all honesty, it is that bad!

I'm often convicted by the red letters in Bible (Jesus' words). Recently in reading Luke 6:42, I felt as if those words were written down years ago just for me:
"How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,' when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye."

Ouch. That stings a bit. Perhaps because its true. I do in fact have a plank in my eye. It's huge, and ultimately it all comes down to selfishness.

It's easy for me to try and disguise the plank in my eye, only the disguises I come up with only make it that much more obvious. I'm convinced that it's easy for me to identify how others are selfish since its such a huge issue in my life. The truth is, I struggle DAILY with being a hypocrite.

If admitting I have a problem is the first step, then I'm there. Now onto the next steps...



Some people will pull out of their driveway, only minutes later to pull back in and check to make sure they remembered to lock the door. I am not one of those people. There is the very rare occasion in which I will double check something, but it is VERY RARE. This could potentially be because my husband double checks things, or maybe its because I just never think to do so.

One day last week happened to be one of those rare occasions though. As I was locking the door to my house and climbing into my car, I began to question whether I had unplugged my hair straightener or not. I brushed the questioning off as I'm not one to double check, "of course I unplugged my hair straightener," I attempted to convince myself. "I always unplug it before I leave."

As I drove down the street I couldn't help but continue to question and reason with myself.
"Did I unplug the straightener?"
"Of course I did."
"I don't actually remember pulling the plug out from the wall."
"You always unplug it, why would today be any different from all other days?"

I finally came to the point where I had to turn around. The battle in my mind was driving me crazy and just wouldn't subside.

I pulled into the driveway, unlocked the door and headed into house. As I entered my bathroom I realized that I HAD NOT unplugged my straightener. Not only was my straightener still plugged in, it was still on. Thank goodness for the battle in my mind!

Call that funny feeling intuition, call it too much coffee, call it Holy Spirit, call it paranoia, whatever you want to call that funny feeling, know that it left my house standing one more day!

I spend quite a bit of my time with kids. And often explain hearing the voice of God to them, the same as I described the above situation...a funny feeling that you get about something, or someone that you often try to talk yourself out of entertaining anymore, because of the risk of being wrong, embarrassed, or wasting time.

And so, in the case of my experience last week, know that I totally accredit my funny feeling to Holy Spirit, knowing that without that feeling, something awful could have happened in my home.



In Canada, Thanksgiving is now a distant memory. However, this short video seems to resonate something within.

As always the fall season seems to bring changes and busyness as the lazy days of summer are put to rest. This fall has proven to be busy, and then some. With the normal going ons of the season, plus a few surprises along the way, life has been slightly more full then normal. But through it all, God has proven Himself to be good and faithful. And so, I'm choosing to say "Thanks God," yet again. He truly does rock :)


a privilege and responsibility

The Fall of 2009 has been unlike any other I've ever experienced. It's been a very full mix of joys and sorrows. The interesting thing about this extreme mix of emotions is that nothing has happened to "me" directly. The ups and downs that I've been through have been those of others that I've had the privilege, and in some cases the responsibility to walk with them through.

I've been reminded time and time again of Paul's words, "Laugh with your happy friends when they're happy; share tears when they're down." (Romans 12:15 The Message) I'm a bit of a softy. It generally doesn't take much for me to get teary. On the other hand, it doesn't take much to get me laughing either. I'm generally not one to hide my emotions. It's not hard for me to identify with Paul's words.

This is one of my greatest strengths, and one of my greatest weaknesses.
A week ago, I was having a roast beef dinner with a few other people. Someone at the table started choking. Thankfully, this individual was able to get the piece of food out of their throat before the Heimlich maneuver was needed. Following this event, I was on the verge of tears for nearly the whole meal. To say that I was emotional and shook up would be an understatement (and I wasn't even the person who choked!). The poor person who was choking seriously started to question my first aid abilities as I could barely hold it together. This was definitely a point of weakness.

On the other hand, a close friend of mine is dealing with a family situation that involves cancer. Yesterday I had absolutely not problem weeping when I found out, and then again as I spoke with them on the phone. I've also spent many times rejoicing with this individual.

Because I work at a church occasionally it is my responsibility to "Laugh with your happy friends when they're happy; share tears when they're down."

But more then that I feel it is a privilege to walk with those in my life through their joys and sorrows.