Was That Dumb Or What?

September 11, 2021 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Humorous

By Carin LeRoy –

Recently my husband and I were traveling to meet up in the same location for a conference. I was coming from our home in Florida, and he was coming in from the Midwest. En route, while on a layover my husband called and said, “Well, I missed my flight. I had the time of departure wrong and didn’t leave enough time for the bus ride to the airport.”

Boy, my husband needs me around to take care of the details for him. How could he miss his flight,” I thought—although I refrained from saying too much to him on the phone. As I sat in the Philadelphia airport for my 4 hour lay-over at Gate 30 sipping coffee and reading a book, people start lining up to board. Walking over to stand in line, I notice the screen says “Phoenix.”

What? I’m not going to Phoenix. I’m going to Rochester!

I realize in a panic that I’m in the wrong terminal. With a bus ride in between, I start heading to Terminal F pulling my luggage and racing through the airport. I had less than 30 minutes before the plane departed. Praying as I ran, I threw my shoes off, grabbed them and ran barefoot down the halls.

Lady sprinting barefoot in a panic through airport = she’s in danger of missing her flight.

Out of breath, I arrive at the gate exhausted and hand the agent my boarding pass.

“Ma’am, the flight just departed.”

I realized too late there was a BIG difference between C30 and F30. While I chided my husband in missing the details of his flight, I had done worse. I had more than enough time to figure out where I was supposed to be, but was blinded by my own stupidity and lack of attention to detail. Texting him my dilemma he wrote back, “Wow, that was dumber than me!”

How many times do we have a self-righteous attitude? We judge others for their actions and think we have it right when we are blind to our own mistakes. That’s why God reminds us in Matthew to take the beam out of our eye before we try to take the speck out of our brother’s. God knows our human nature will scrutinize the faults of others, but neglect to see our own. Let’s remember to let encouragement trump judgment. Maybe there are times for constructive criticism, but scripture is clear that grace and mercy are far better.

PRAYER: Lord, help me to check my own actions before I find fault with others. Keep me mindful that a self-righteous attitude does not honor you, but showing others grace and mercy does.

“Why do you see the speck in your brother’s eye, but fail to see the beam of wood in your own? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye,’ while there is a beam in your own? You hypocrite! First remove the beam from your own eye, and then you can see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye” (Matthew 7: 3-4 NET).

The Blame Game

August 13, 2021 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Humorous

By Carin LeRoy –

I like to play the blame game in my marriage. My husband tells me I always find a way to fault him for something.

“Are you coming? We’re going to be late,” he’ll say.

“I’m coming, but since you didn’t show me how to work the alarm clock, I got up late” (not that I should have read the directions).

“When can you sew the button on my pants?”

“I can’t find the button, where did you put it?” (even though he gave it to me when he asked me to sew it).

After over 30 years of marriage it’s now become a joke between us. I can always find a way to blame him for something—as ridiculous as it may be. With a roll of his eyes he’ll say, “Well I knew it had to be my fault.”

Well, if I’m full of blame, then he’s full of excuses. He can find an excuse for anything.

“Is there a reason you threw the paper and wrappings all over the garage floor instead of just putting it in the garbage right here,” I’ll ask.

“The lawn mower was in front of the trash can. (Really? Why not push the mower over?)

“How come you didn’t ask if I wanted a little rice pudding, too?”

“Well, you looked pretty content.” (But why not ask?)

I think our little traits go way back to the Garden of Eden when we read God’s questions to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3.

“Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat?”

Excuse from the man: “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.” (Where was your responsibility in putting your own mouth around that fruit?)

Then the Lord said to the woman, “What is this you have done?”

Fault-finding from the woman: “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” (Excuse me, but didn’t you pick the fruit and disobey what God said?)
It’s an age-old problem – laying blame and giving excuses. It started the day man and woman chose to sin. We see how mankind has been affected by those beginning days in the garden. In part, my husband and I joke about it in our marriage. But in serious situations, assigning blame or making excuses can have grave consequences. Learning to humble ourselves under God’s mighty hand by admitting our mistakes and wrong behavior will bring healing and peace in our relationships. God will be pleased, too.

PRAYER: Lord, help me to take responsibility for my actions. Excusing my sin or blaming others is not pleasing to You. Give me humility and help me to recognize and admit my mistakes in order to create harmony and peace in my relationships.

“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace” (Ephesians 4:2-3 NIV).

Be a Stand-out Believer

July 24, 2021 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Life Topics

Carin LeRoy –

While in a college, I had a friend that caused a stir every time she would sneeze. Rather than let loose like the rest of us with a big hearty “Ah-Choo,” she’d suppress hers so that it stopped before it made it past her lips. All you’d hear was a squeaky sound cut short in the back of her throat. We’d all stop and take notice when my friend would sneeze. I worried she was going to burst some blood vessel in her head, but she assured us everything was fine.

Sometimes people just stand out. Have you ever been in the room with someone with a recognizable laugh? You’d know the laugh anywhere and with your eyes closed. How about the guy driving the new sports car? I’ve seen the males in my family stop and take a second look as they drive by. We’ve all run into people that grab our attention.

As Christians, we should be someone who people notice, too. But rather than being drawn to our unusual sneeze, recognizable laugh or new sports car, they should be drawn to our actions and spirit. If we demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit, people should see love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5). Instead of reacting with impatience, we respond with politeness. Rather than rudeness, we show kindness. Love, gentleness and faith in God are evident as we interact with others.

Who stood out in the crowd more than Noah? In Genesis 6, God describes the people during Noah’s day as “every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time.” Wickedness ruled the earth. “But Noah found favor in the sight of the Lord.” Noah stood out to God as a blameless and righteous contemporary of his day. I’m sure others noticed he didn’t live the life they did.

How does God see us? What is noticeable to others when they encounter us? Let’s be that person that is “different” in a good way. Our actions and attitude cause other to be drawn to the Christ-like spirit that our lives display. Not only will we stand out in a crowd, but we will gain God’s favor.
PRAYER: Lord, help me to be the person that lives a consistent and exemplary life before others. Help my attitude and actions to reflect who You are, and help my life to be an example to those who do not know You.

“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5: 14-16 NIV).

Prince Charming

June 18, 2021 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Family

By Carin LeRoy –

He caught my eye right away–the tall, lean guy with sun-bleached hair. It was love-at-first-sight for me. A mutual friend introduced us in the hallway during my first week of college.

Wow, I thought, I’d love to go out with him.

As a young girl, I had dreamy thoughts of who my Prince Charming might be and what he’d look like. Would he be tall or average height? Would he be blue or brown-eyed? What color would his hair be? Would he be handsome and funny? I had this weird idea that God would probably give me a husband, but that I’d probably not like him too much. Or that he’d be a great Christian, but he’d be ugly. God would give everyone else a great guy, but he’d give me the leftovers.

I remember the day the tall, lean guy with the sun-bleached hair sat by me in class. It was the end of my junior year in college, three years after I’d met him. (I guess it took him a while to notice me!) My heart must have skipped several beats.

“Hi,” he said calmly, “mind if I sit here?”

Are you kidding? I don’t think I absorbed too much of the lecture that day.

Yes, I married the tall, lean guy with the sun-bleached hair. He was everything I’d hoped for and far more. His devotion for God, his love and faithfulness to family, and his commitment to serve others made him my ideal choice. Marriage isn’t always perfect as you work through some of the bumps, but he’s definitely perfect for me.

What made me think that God would give me the ugly leftovers in a guy? Sometimes we have a distorted view of who God is. God loves to surprise us with the great plans He has for us–if only we’d just be patient and wait. Too many times we jump ahead of God’s plan, and then we live with that regret. So whatever place you find yourself today, remember that God does have a great plan for you, too. Be willing to wait on His timing.

PRAYER: Lord, thank You that You have great plans for me. Give me understanding and a proper view of who You are. Help me not to be impulsive and jump ahead of Your plan, but give me patience to wait for Your timing in my life.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord” (Jeremiah 29: 11-14 NIV).

Living Productive

June 15, 2021 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Life Topics

By Carin LeRoy –

Working in a mission organization, I have the privilege of seeing and talking with many people who are living and working in overseas locations. Part of my job is to do a closing interview with all of those who go on short term trips to discuss how their time went. I enjoy hearing their stories as their share about their experience. Recently while talking with a medical intern who spent six weeks in a village hospital in Papua New Guinea, I asked him “What are some of the lessons you’ve learned from your time there?”

“While living there, I saw how hard the people had to work each day just to survive. Their lives are difficult. I want to become more diligent. Rather than having a day to sit around and watch a movie or do something I like, I want my life to be productive,” he said.

In Psalms 90:12 (NET) it says, “So teach us to consider our mortality, so that we might live wisely.” It’s easy to let a day slip by us. Whether we sit around watching movies, playing video games, or spend hours with friends, we need to ask ourselves if the day could have been better spent. We can never recapture a day. Once spent, it is gone. But we can change the future and how we live each new day. A bit of prayerful planning can provide us with both the relaxation we need as well as fulfillment from our accomplishments.

God desires that we live productive lives. Don’t let time pass each day without a sense of fulfillment from a day well spent. Let’s stay focused on what God desires for us to accomplish each day and use our energy to work toward things that show diligence in our lives.

PRAYER: Lord, keep me focused on living a productive life. Give me wisdom to know the balance between relaxation and wasting time. Help me to accomplish Your purpose for each day.

“Whatever you find to do with your hands, do it with all your might, because there is neither work nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom in the grave, the place where you will eventually go” (Ecclesiastes 9:10 NET).

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