Archive for February, 2017

Pockets

Wednesday, February 15th, 2017

The mid-twenties something man stood next to his dad in the lobby of our church. He looked sparkling,  clean-cut and just a bit self-conscious. If I hadn’t known better, I might have thought he was a soldier home on leave; but that was not the case. His presence there, at that moment in time, was a visible testament to his dad’s unfaltering and unconditional love, commitment and determination to get his son back. The truth of the matter is that he had just returned home after serving almost two and a half years in a Federal facility on a drug charge. As we chatted he remarked to me, “My dad warned me that I was messing up. I didn’t pay any attention to my dad and it got me 29 months in jail”.

I could tell he was becoming emotional. He put his hands in his pockets and looked down and he began to sob. Then he said the strangest thing. These pockets sure feel good! You know in jail you don’t have pockets; it’s amazing what you don’t think about until you don’t have it.”  The young man then removed his glasses and the tears overflowed from his crystal-clear eyes. I hugged him and told him that we all loved him. I don’t think I’ll ever take pockets for granted again.

Something to Think About

John

© 2017 John Gouldener All Rights Reserved

Podcast:   

http://www.buzzsprout.com/41402

My journey to wholeness in my free online book  @

Part 1 UNSCREWED – Becoming Whole Again

Be Still…

Thursday, February 9th, 2017

Over the weekend, I was in line at McDonald’s and the woman’s order in front of me totaled $5.21. She handed the clerk a ten and then said “I’ve got the twenty-one cents”. I pretty much knew what would happen next.  As the clerk stood there holding the ten, the woman began to scrounge around in her purse. She twisted and contorted herself as she dug deeper for the elusive coins. The clerk rolled her eyes. The guy behind me sighed a bit. A little girl toward the back said, “Mommy I’m hungry”. Me —– I just smiled because I knew I had a good story in the making. As the line grew longer the woman started taking stuff out of her bag and placing it on the counter — a mini umbrella, a wad of tissue, a bottle of hand sanitizer, a cell phone and a huge key ring with a picture of a golden retriever.  At this point I remember thinking, “Gee, I wish I had thought to time this search”.  The guy behind me started to pray. At least I heard him say something about God. The stoic clerk looked our way and silently mouthed, “I’m sorry”.  The hungry little girl began to cry. I thanked God that in my old age He has given me some patience and a sense of humor.

The truth is when we go for “fast food” we expect to wait. That is part of the experience. But when it comes to God we expect his train to run on our schedule. Yet, often He keeps us waiting. God is rich in wisdom.  He always has a specific reason for His delays. When I’m waiting on God I’m tempted to help him out a bit.  That always involves some degree of me taking matters into my own hands. My bad — always! “Be still in the presence of the Lord, and wait patiently for him to act”. Psalms 37:7 (NLT) In other words He never needs my help. While waiting on God our sole responsibility is to trust. The longer God takes to give me direction, the more He teaches me.

 

 

Something to think about

© 2017 John Gouldener,  All Rights Reserved

Podcast:   

http://www.buzzsprout.com/41402

My journey to wholeness in my free online book  @

Part 1 UNSCREWED – Becoming Whole Again

Looking Back

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

Well, I just saw my first post-Obama bumper sticker. It has his pic along with this caption: “And you thought I was bad!” Following that car, suddenly I had a flashback to the Jethro Tull hit from the late sixties, “Living in the Past”, in which Jethro longed to return to the peaceful days prior to the Vietnam War.  I thought about me and my buddies from grade school going to the Knickerbocker Theater when tickets were twenty-five cents and popcorn was a nickel. Next, with a tinge of sadness, I remembered the uncomfortable treadmill life that I used to live when I chose to allow my past to dictate my today.

Finally, I recollected the wise words of St. Paul, “… I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead…”  Philippians 3:13 (NLT)  Recollections are past tense; whereas, reality only occurs in the present which means that today is the only day we can change.

Something to think about

 

 

 

             © 2017 John Gouldener All Rights Reserved

Podcast:   

http://www.buzzsprout.com/41402

My journey to wholeness in my free online book  @

Part 1 UNSCREWED – Becoming Whole Agai