Browsing Tag


Live in the Big Show

Live in the Big Show

Dearest Grandson,

You know that baseball players in the minor leagues dream of improving their offense – hitting the ball – and their defense – fielding the ball – so that one day they will be promoted to a Major League Baseball team. They call it “The Show.”

Right now, you’re like those young players with their big dreams.

Right now, you’re still in the minors – childhood, that is – learning, growing, developing talents, acquiring new skills. All these are important, but what’s most important as you strive for the majors – The Show – is framing a life that is built on character … who you are and what you show (your verb, your action) … in living a life that is BIG … as you aim for The Show (your noun, your appearance).

And right now, you’re NINE. Something about NINE and baseball. NINE players. NINE innings.

So, what I want to share with you NINE fundamentals that I believe will help position you to Live in the Big Show, help give you a good eye at the plate, help you field a bad hop, help you wear both competiveness and compassion on your uniform.

1 Show gratitude.

Be thankful for all the good in your life. Talk about being thankful. Show your gratitude to others. Say “thank you” every day. Especially to God.  You’re never off on the wrong foot when you step out in gratitude. You can’t think about bad stuff when you’re thankful and keep your mind on the good stuff.

Whatever happens, in every situation, no matter what the circumstances, no matter what the score, be grateful and continually give thanks to God.

2 Show forgiveness.

You will make errors, others will make the errors, but God forgives. We should too. Seek to have powers of forgiveness and love and you’ll be super. Accept life, and be most patient and tolerant with others, always ready to forgive if you have a difference with anyone. Forgive as freely as the Lord has forgiven you. Don’t be angry with others, but forgive one another. Never hold grudges. Have a loving and understanding heart. If you feel someone has wronged you, forgive them because that’s what God says.

3 Show faith.

When you keep believing – whether you win or lose – you are choosing to hold on to faith. Stay faithful and trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Keep the words of the King of Managers, Jesus, in your heart when He said to “Have faith in God.” Without faith it’s impossible to play the game of life and walk with God. My all-time favorite verse, the logo on my pennant, is Luke 1:37, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.”

4 Show kindness.

You will be amazed how much of a difference you can make by just smiling every time you talk to someone. You have the power, the gift, to change someone’s life with small gestures:  a tip of the cap, a hello, a thank you. Be kind and patient and understanding to everyone. Clothe yourselves with a uniform of compassion and mercy, gentleness and patience.

5 Show integrity.

Be honest and true in all you do each day. Play by the rules and do what is right and fair, even when it’s hard, even when you get a bad call. Make your decisions based on the strong values you have learned. Treat all the people you meet that there is something worthwhile in them, because when you play and live with integrity and with moral character, you live securely. Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got. Become a role model of good actions for your teammates. Show integrity, seriousness, and set a good example for everyone. Go out of your way to do what is right, and speak the truth. No one can argue with that.

6 Show respect.

Treat everyone with consideration and respect, no matter what team they cheer. People notice how you treat others. Honor others the same way you want to be honored. In whatever you do, don’t let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble, and value others more than yourselves.

7 Show friendship.

Be that friend who thinks of others, who is thoughtful and considerate, who nourishes the goodness in another person. Pursue friendship and happiness will happen. Encourage your friends, cheer for them, help them, and tell them how much you care about them. Build up their hope. Be truly loving, for love is the best rule in the playbook. Love your friends, your teammates, deeply. Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”  Let your love and friendship extend to everyone, especially those on the end of the bench, for love is from God.

8 Show service.

You follow God’s way when you give and serve others. You get energy from following your passions, from committing to people and service and causes. Compassion isn’t waiting; it’s doing. Compassion isn’t watching; it’s helping. You have been blessed with special abilities from God to be used in the service of others. So use your gift well, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings. Show generosity, be rich in the good things you do, and share with others.

9 Show the love of Jesus.

The best way to improve your life, your position, your relationships with teammates and with others, is to act like Him. Love doesn’t give up. Love doesn’t lose faith. Love is hopeful, no matter the score. Love endures through all circumstances. And that’s the love of Jesus you show to everyone. Be Like Jesus. When you show love, you share in joy and happiness and wonder and goodness. And that’s always the winning way.

So, during your young years, your training days (and really, for all your life), I pray that you will SHOW these NINE fundamentals as you advance from the minor leagues and into the major leagues. Into The SHOW.

Happy NINTH birthday!

I love you! God bless you. Always.



Handful of happy October 2015

The easiest and the hardest thing to do every day is to live with gratitude, but it will transform our life if we can do it.

When life is hard, throws unexpected messes at us, nearly drowns us, pushes us down and down, when we struggle to breathe ~~~

How can we think about, articulate, or even believe in happy?

By understanding that every moment of every day in every life does not have to be happy.

Only ONE moment does. ONE glimpse. ONE second. ONE breath.

And choosing to find it. Choosing to hold onto it. Choosing to claim it to redeem any hard messy heartbreaking sorrowful day. It’s our choice. Being grateful. For life.

I know.

For nearly three years, there has been so much hard in my life, so much what-is-going-on!, and yet so much miraculously easy – because of this choice to live with gratitude. Transformative.

So each day I post a Happy Day Moment on my personal Facebook page, and I also post on my Twitter feed and my Happy Day Moment Facebook Page something I’ve been thinking about.

Something to encourage, uplift, inspire, energize— and perhaps transform – others. (And do the same for me!)

Here is the handful from my October posts that had the most likes, the most comments, the most shares. Seems that kindness and love are my themes for the month 🙂

  • Don’t harbor or memorize a list of all the things you think you’ve messed up. Forgive yourself and move forward. 
  • Be the one who is generous with kind words and who reminds others they are treasured and loved.
  • Don’t just love those who treat you right; that’s easy. But love those who don’t; that’s what Jesus says.
  • God is at work even when we can’t see it.
  • Never giving up; always persevering. Never surrendering; always believing.
  • Today believe for grace, love, joy, and miracles to surround you.
  • Let our hearts be ripe with kindness and helpfulness and understanding.
  • Because God so loves us, we ought to love each other.
  • Be kind because it’s who you are, not because others have to earn it.
  • There is power in a positive word, a kind gesture, a quiet gift that can change someone’s day.

Be kind. Be loving.


Handful of happy September 2015

Let the fuel of your life be love, mercy, and forgiveness.

We all know that we get energy from food, from the sun, from coal, from oil, from the wind, from water, from natural gas, and that fuels store potential energy in forms that can be practicably released and used for work.

But I also believe that that we get energy from following our passions, from committing to people and service and causes, from choosing to live with gratitude. And the fuel that creates this strength and drive comes from love and goodwill – from kindliness and humanity.

That’s what I’ve been thinking about. Fueling my life – energizing my life – with love and mercy and forgiveness.

And then here’s a handful of other thoughts from my Twitter feed and my Happy Day Moments Facebook Page:

  • May your heart be at peace in the waiting.
  • May your faith be bigger than your fears.
  • Remember the power of good words and how we all long to be appreciated and encouraged.
  • My circumstances will not determine my peace
  • Lots of things in this world are not right. But one thing is always right: God’s love.
  • We can choose how we respond. Compliment more; criticize less.
  • Always pray and never give up.
  • Be bold in your kindness to others.
  • Give a boost up to someone who’s worn out from holding on.


Happy Day Moment Echoes: 5.15

There will be blossoms.

More than likely, you’re experienced deep, hard moments. Maybe you’re like me and are in the middle of them right now. Moments of emptiness loneliness bleakness.

And yet. (Those two words are a promise.)

And yet, for all the struggles, questions, hard times, there is gratitude.

Gratitude that shines a light in every dark, desolate place. Gratitude that remembers a summer, a fruitful place.

That season of minimal color, stark branches, when the world feels forsaken, will become a season of blossoms.

And I will be grateful.

For every season holds something of value. The buried seed blooms.

As Echoes of the May posts on my Happy Day Moment Facebook page,

As one who strives and yearns and (sometimes) blooms to live with gratitude, I make these statements as blossoms to you:

Pink blossom (Explore 2014-05-09)

It’s not happy moments that make us grateful, but gratefulness that makes happy moments.

Be profoundly, crazily, completely, utterly you.

Life is too short to live even one day without celebrating and expressing love for others.

Let the next chapter of your story be a story of love and rescue.

Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own.

Don’t be defeated by hatefulness, but defeat hatefulness with love.

We all make mistakes, but let’s forgive one another, covering offenses with love when we’re wronged or hurt.

When you see others in a hard season, love them well.


It’s good to believe that anything is possible.

God’s grace can never fail

People will always judge or misjudge you; live with kindness and forgiveness anyway.

Love covers over all wrongs.

Essential to living a life with joy, confidence, faith, and hope is remembering to be grateful.


Let’s pause before we speak and understand the weight of our words.

Don’t let the voices of guilt or inadequacy whisper negativity into your moments.

Stop judging; start accepting. Stop rejecting; start embracing. Stop withholding; start giving.

Be hopeful. Share hope. Because in the end God wins.

Nobody is better at being you than you. Say yes to being who God made you.


May these words be as a hand upon your shoulder: “Despite everything, you belong to God.”

The key to being happy is to make kindness a fundamental pursuit in your life.

We can always choose kindness — a most excellent expression of love.

Nothing much matters if we don’t have love. Love others extravagantly.


Help others in ways small and large and put aside a “payback” mentality.

We are equally important and we all have different gifts for doing things well. Be you!

Embrace new opportunities. Enter new relationships and new situations with courage.

Each and every passing day, we are the beneficiaries of a myriad of mercies

Faith helps us live with the unanswered.


Be deliberately encouraging to others and see what happens.

There is always something more important than our feelings, and that is God’s love.

Shift your focus to thankfulness and all the ways you are blessed.

Choose to make time for the sweetness of intimacy that comes from investing heart time with those we love.

P.S. – If you enjoyed this post and think it may be helpful for others, please share it by using the social media buttons! Thanks! Or post a comment and let me know what blessed  you. 🙂

photo by:

Happy Day Moment Echoes: 4.15

Don’t attach your self-worth to someone else’s opinion of you. Nourish yourself with what God says you are.

You wouldn’t think an inspirational reminder would come in the middle of watching a Cubs game on TV. But that’s what happened. I was “resting” my eyes (what my Dad called being on the verge of slipping into a nap) when the thought floated through my near subconscious: what happens when a grain of sand finds its way into an oyster? A pearl happens.

The birth of a pearl is truly a miraculous event. Gemstones or precious metals are mined from the earth, but pearls are grown by live oysters far below the surface of the sea. Gemstones must be cut and polished to bring out their beauty. But pearls need no such treatment to reveal their loveliness. They are born from oysters complete – with a shimmering iridescence, lustre and soft inner glow unlike any other gem on earth.

Layer upon layer of nacre, also known as mother-of-pearl, coats that grain of sand until the iridescent gem is formed.

How something so wondrous emerges from an oyster’s way of protecting itself is one of God’s loveliest surprises. For the nacre isn’t just a soothing substance; it’s composed of microscopic crystals of calcium carbonate, aligned so perfectly with one another that light passing along the axis of one crystal is reflected and refracted by another to produce a rainbow of light and color. Way cool.

All starting with that grain of sand. Now some may have an opinion that you are as a grain of sand, or I am a grain of sand – an irritant, an aggravation, a pain and botheration.

But you know what? We can be covered and covered by layers of God’s love, nourished with what God says about us.

Just as layer upon layer of nacre coats the grain of sand until the iridescent gem is formed.

And what happens?

You become a pearl! I become a pearl!

Something rare, fine, admirable and valuable. Way cool.

And how about some more inspirational reminders? These are the daily posts from my Happy Day Moment Facebook Page … the Echoes from April 2015.

What others say and do to us is much more about them, than us.

Let God’s compassion cover our failures. Let His mercy wash over our mess.

You can’t have a healthy relationship without abundant forgiveness.

Look closely. You will see God’s presence in the dark cloud.

We ought to exchange our self-serving heart for one that carries a passion to serve others.

The injustices of our world don’t change when we choose anger. They only change when we choose love.

You’ll have a hard time ever being happy if you aren’t grateful for what you already have.

Let’s remain confident of this: there is goodness in every day.

Refuse to recognize that any problem is anything less than an opportunity to see God.

Show kindness, to everyone. Especially be kind to the unkind, because that’s how God has treated me.

Don’t let the negativity of the world discourage you from sharing joy.

Take time for little gestures of love.

Love is not silent. That’s not its treatment.

Instead of nursing our pain, we can find freedom in choosing to cling to our hope in God.

Use your voice for good – to inspire, to encourage, to educate, to spread more love and understanding.

Talking about hard things with someone who’s supportive can be so healing.

Be the friend who pours kindness and compassion into those who are running on empty.

Be the one who walks beside another, who shares their burden, who says, “I love you. Let me help.”

Safe relationships involve grace, forgiving each other and overlooking offenses. 

Let love be your compass. Not rejection. Not disappointments. Not sorrows.

When God’s kindness and love appeared, he saved us, not because anything we had done, but because of his mercy. 

No suffering you go through is suffering God will not carry you.

P.S. – If you enjoyed this post and think it may be helpful for others, please share it by using the social media buttons! Thanks!

Better yet … post a comment 🙂