Steve to Earth - Encouraging you the way I like to be encouraged.



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Posts Tagged ‘friends’

Friends like Jesus

May the road that lies before you lead you to many friends who look like … live like … and love like Jesus.

Friends like Barnabas … who give the Paul in you a trusted companion in ministry … who give the John Mark in you that coveted second chance … whose every heartbeat encourages you to become every good thing our Father created you to be.

Friends like Ruth … who cherish spiritual formation more than safety … who value truth more than heritage … who seek the Living, Forgiving God more than the gods of this world.

Friends like Jonathan … who treat you like a king when that great honor belongs to them … who protect your welfare even in the face of great danger … who choose to knit their souls to your soul rather than to wealth, power and fame.

Friends like Jesus … who reach deep into your heart and free the hero within … the hero they have always believed you can be … who love you just the way you are with a transforming, life-changing love … who forgive you when they have the power to destroy you.

May your little corner of the world be filled with many friends who love Jesus much more than they love you … for then you will possess the richest treasure this world has to give. May you discover and delight in all the riches of that priceless treasure.

May you find all your friends in Jesus … and may they find Jesus in you.


Unexpected storms … unexpected beauty

I love learning how to live in relationship with Jesus. I love having my spirit uplifted and my soul encouraged. I love late-night visits and delicious meals with friends. I love road trips. I love snow. I love the fact that all of those things that I love came together this past weekend in Oklahoma.

There was homemade pizza and gentle conversation. It was snowing as we walked out the doors of the church building. I tried to catch the frozen flakes on my tongue. They collected on my eyelashes and my hair. They tickled my nose. My gracious host and good friend swept the thick snow from the windows of my pickup early the next morning and had the cab of my truck warm and ready to go for my trip to the city.

I drove through a winter wonderland. Black Angus cattle stood out in stark relief against the white countryside. The evergreens at the Christmas tree farm added a touch of the holidays to the late March snowstorm. The redbud trees, covered with blooms, reminded me of cherry layer cakes topped with thick white frosting. A jovial DJ played “Frosty the Snowman” as I headed east down the turnpike.

The cold temperatures made the warm hugs … sunny smiles … and firm handshakes even more inviting as I headed to class. Each day of learning seemed better than the one before. I listened intently to each speaker. My voice blended with thousands of others in worship and in song. I picked out books and CDs to glean from and study on my own once I arrived back home.

I lingered over delicious lunches and dinners with friends. We laughed … we talked … we listened. We strengthened our friendships with Jesus and with each other. Gifts were exchanged … gifts of time and attention … listening ears and encouraging words … shared experiences and insights about the struggles and the joys of walking with Jesus and living life abundantly in Him. On the final day, as we headed our separate ways, I was given a book … a gift made even more special by the handwritten message lovingly penned on the opening page.

I am blessed to have such good friends … to have been introduced to Jesus at such an early age … to have great opportunities to strengthen my friendship with Him and others who are being transformed daily into His image. I am blessed to have an avenue to share what I am learning with you. I plan to share some of what I learned soon.

Until then, may you see the beauty in the unexpected storms. May Jesus clear the way for you to travel safely in His love and His counsel, and may you emerge on the other side … stronger … more faithful … more thankful for the forgiving Jesus and those people who reflect Him beautifully in your world every day. May your soul live more abundantly in Him each day.



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