Oscars

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Wow – what a great show Sunday night. The joke I heard today was that the theme of the Oscars was the Grammys. Queen opened with Adam Lambert. Amazing. Bette Midler sang the song from Mary Poppins. The highlight of the night was Lady Gaga singing Shallow with Bradley Cooper. Wow wow wow wow!!!!!  If you haven’t seen it, find it on youTube. If you haven’t seen A Star Is Born, I highly recommend it. Passion and emotion just flow from that show and the songs.

shallow pix 2

I am not sure if you are a movie lover or not but I am. The variety of movies nominated this year gave hope to future movie makers. We had a super hero movie with Black Panther. I am not normally a comic book movie fan. However, Black Panther was truly epic. Costumes, scenery, story line and acting truly led to it being nominated for Best Picture. I haven’t seen Green Book but plan to this week thanks to Amazon Prime. I didn’t see The Favourite and I don’t plan to. Two of the women at my Oscar Party saw it and said it’s way too graphic sexually. They did agree the Queen, who won best actress, was amazing. I now want to see Black KkKlansman. Intriguing premise. A Star Is Born rocked my world. Wish it won more awards at the Oscars. Bohemian Rhapsody had an incredible story unfold. It’s a bit slow but worth it and the music is fabulous. He truly deserved best actor. Didn’t see Vice and don’t plan to. Too liberal for me.

Roma. Saw it. Hated it. If any of you saw it and liked it, seriously let me know why. I don’t understand the hype around it. It was depressing. It wasn’t fabulous acting. It was boring. It was hopeless. It had no redemption. If that is supposed to be deep and show me reality, no thank you. As a Christian, I live for hope and redemption. God brings that to any story that is hopeless. Without hope and redemption, why tell the story? I know a glimpse at reality is good to understand our world. However, I need some hope. I don’t believe any situation is hopeless. Our God can do anything and infuse life into anything that’s dying. I get that this movie wasn’t about that but what was his point. Life sucks. Life is hopeless and depressing and this is the best it gets. NO! Life is for living and giving life to others. Giving hope to others. God calls us to infuse hope in this world – His hope. He is our hope.

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 hope and a future. ~ Jeremiah 29:11 NIV

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. 

I Peter 1:3-4a NIV

As a movie buff, I ask Hollywood to give me movies about reality but give me hope in it. Give me a glimpse of what could be. As a human being who loves the Lord, I ask you all, infuse hope to others today. We all need it. God provides it.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

 

 

 

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Slowing Me Down

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As I drove home the other night on the freeway, I was driving at a modest 60 miles per hour in the lane next to the fast lane. Most of the lanes were at that same pace. However, the fast lane was wide open. After a few minutes, I decided to see if the fast lane was gonna keep moving. I moved over and sped up. I passed two cars (both going about 60 mph) and the freeway was wide open. As I continued to speed up and move ahead, I looked in my rear view mirror. I could see a line of headlights behind me. The majority of the traffic stayed in pace with those two cars. I, embracing the open lanes, enjoyed the freedom to speed up and move closer to my home. Had I not moved passed the slower cars, I’d still be with that line of headlights (that was now so far back I could barely see them.) I immediately correlated what had happened with life. What slow car am I coasting with instead of venturing ahead to see a new, wide open path?

What is slowing you down: a job you are unhappy with, a friendship, a fear, a role you are stuck in? What is it? Are you contentedly coasting with the rest of the crowd? Nothing wrong with it, but you don’t know what is ahead you may be missing. A new job you love could be up there. A severed friendship could mean space for another friendship to form that is much healthier to you. A newfound courage will release you to a variety of never before considered options. A fresh perspective will give life to a role you are in.

I encourage you to look at your life and see if you are coasting behind a slow car. Identify what that car is. Consider what moving beyond that car could look like. Take a merge to a new lane and see what opens up. You may be surprised how much joy unfolds in the new risk. Sometimes, coasting in the lane with the other cars is just fine. You may need a season of going 5 miles below the speed limit. When you are ready to hit 65 mph or 70 mph or …, do it. Merge and go.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

God’s Not Dead

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I finally saw the third movie in the God’s Not Dead series. I loved them all but I loved-loved this third one. If you haven’t seen any of them, watch them all. I saw this third one on Netflix. You don’t need to watch in order. The main pastor stays the same and a few return characters but it’s a stand alone movie. I don’t want to give away the movie but I do want to share my take away.

I don’t think I love enough. Those that know me, love me and know I love them. However, I am not even close to loving as God loves. This movie looked at the forgiveness of someone who is fully guilty. Huge places to show love beyond what is deserved. I don’t do that. I judge. I get frustrated. I demand justice. Pastor Dave in the movie struggles too. I think that resonated with me. I wanna get mad. My anger is justified in many instances too. However, to quote an overused expression – WWJD (what would Jesus do?).

Jesus got mad and overturned the tables in the temple because the some were profiting from the sacrifices of His people. Not OK. Yet, Jesus forgave the woman who committed adultery (punishable by death in those days) even though she was fully guilty. How do I forgive someone who is legitimately guilty and deserves the consequences to their actions? How do I not, when I consider reality?

Reality – I am a sinner. I have disobeyed God. I have created a separation between He and I because of that disobedience. The penalty (consequence) for disobedience is death. A death sacrifice is required to restore things between God and I. I can’t do that because I’m not a pure sacrifice. Thankfully, I don’t have to do that nor does He ask that of me. He sent His son, Jesus, to be the pure, blameless sacrifice on behalf of all humans whoever have or ever will exist. The price it too high for us to pay. By accepting Jesus, believing He died and rose again and having a relationship with Him, allows us free access to the throne of God. Jesus says “she’s with me.”

If I, a sinner who deserves consequences, gets grace and an open door to God’s throne, how can I deny that to someone else? I must forgive.

Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you. – Ephesians 4:31b-32 MSG

Forgive my unforgiveness Lord. I strive to be more like Him daily. Forgive someone today, even if it is yourself. Live in the freedom of forgiveness and the victory of Jesus’ resurrection. You are free to love because you have been loved much.

Dream Big! Pray Big!

P.S. Sorry for my time off. I skipped Martin Luther King day because I was enjoying my kids being home. The past two weeks I skipped because I am recovering from an emergency gall bladder removal surgery. I’ll blog about it later. I am doing well and grateful to be on the other side of that pain. God was in each step of it. Pray for my continued healing.