Splatter

(A devotional thought from the book One Smile, One Heart)

Splatter“When it rains, it pours” is not a true statement. Sometimes when it rains, it mists. Sometimes when it rains, it sprinkles. Sometimes when it rains, it showers. And yes, sometimes when it rains, it pours.

Today is a “when it rains, it pours” kind of day. I’m watching the water pelt the curved hood of my red Beetle as I drive toward home. Each drop is hitting so close in time to the previous drop that it is creating the illusion of a stream falling from the sky. The heavy drops are landing with such force that they are first splattering, and then continuing as a spray. This is better than a high-powered automatic car wash!

The Bible says God pours His love into our hearts. He doesn’t mist it into our hearts quietly. He doesn’t sprinkle it into our hearts gently. He doesn’t shower it into our hearts steadily. No, God pours His love into our hearts like a stream falling from the sky. It lands with such force that it splatters and sprays onto all the people who surround us.

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“God’s love has been poured out into our HEARTS through the Holy Spirit” (Romans 5:5 NIV).

One Smile, One Heart

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Our Last Conversation

(A devotional thought from the book One Smile, One Heart)

CoconutsI didn’t realize that it was going to be the end of her life. I was visiting Melissa at Huntsville Hospital. We were talking about the upcoming presidential election. I shared with her that I was praying for a president with three qualities: Godly values, integrity, and wisdom.

As Melissa was always willing to pray for everything and everybody, she said, “Well, I’m going to pray that way, too!”

I expressed that things had just gotten so bad in this world. She said, “Oh, Beck, they really have.”

That was the last conversation I had with Melissa. She unexpectedly slipped into unconsciousness the next day and moved on to heaven shortly thereafter.

Wanting to preserve my sweet friend, I returned in my mind to that last conversation. I parked there and contemplated it. And then, in slow motion, a truth of great magnitude rose in my spirit. The things that were so heavy on our hearts that day are no longer the slightest concern to Melissa! In fact, none of the dark horrific things on this whole planet are a worry to her now!

If only we could set our hearts on things above… our minds on things above…

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“Set your HEARTS on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:1-2 NIV).

One Smile, One Heart

No One Died

On TourMost passengers were from Australia and New Zealand. Some were from the United Kingdom, two from South Africa, and two from Guatemala. Toss in a tour director from Alabama and a driver from Ecuador and we were bound to have fun on the 15-day tour I was leading.

The tour began and ended in New York City, traveling by motorcoach throughout the Eastern United States and Canada. Day 9 brought us to Toronto where we were scheduled to visit the Ontario Parliament building. As we rode from our hotel to Parliament, a passenger noticed a flag at half-staff.

“Why is that Ontario flag flying at half-staff?” he asked me.

“I’m not sure,” I answered. “I didn’t hear of any death or major event on the news this morning.”

The passengers and I began to notice other flags along the route at half-staff. Our curiosity was rising by the minute. Upon arrival at the Parliament building, we could clearly see on the left lawn a Canada flag lowered and on the right lawn an Ontario flag lowered. What has happened? I mused.

We parked, unloaded, and waited on the approaching security guard for further instructions.

“Welcome! Follow me this way,” he said, pointing toward the pink sandstone building adorned with gargoyles.

I walked next to him and the group followed. “Why are all the flags in the city at half-staff?” I asked.

He laughed. “Well, no one died. Our flagpole pulley for the Canada flag is malfunctioning. It won’t allow the flag to go up all the way. Because no flag can fly higher than the Canada flag, everyone in the city has had to lower their Ontario flags until we get it fixed.”

On tour the adventures are endless and the laughs are abundant.

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“God’s glory is on tour in the skies, God-craft on exhibit across the horizon” (Psalm 19:1 MSG).