This Weekend @ The Gathering: Everyone Limps; A Few Dance

Today we finished our current series, “They Promised Me Chocolate,” with the message entitled, “Everyone Limps. A Few Dance.”

When people think about you, they are going to think about one of two things:

1.The inspiration you were; how you were able to take the hand you were dealt and turn it into something beautiful.

2. Or a cautionary tale; someone who wasted their potential and the life they could’ve had, the contribution they could’ve made.

Which one of these they choose is up to you.

There are five different kinds of people we meet on our journey to heaven.  They are:

  1. The arrogant and the proud. You’ve met those.  These are the people for whom nothing is too much.  They think the world revolves around them.
  2. The advantaged and the entitled. Those who have been given great advantages in life and who feel entitled to more.
  3. The bruised and the bullied. Thos are the people on the sidelines; not in the game because of injuries.  And when you hear their story, you do indeed feel sorry for them.
  4. The betrayed and the bitter. These are the people who were on the way to greatness, but someone tripped them up: a divorce, slander, gossip; someone somewhere that they trusted who should’ve been there for them wasn’t.  Or worse than that, told outright lies that destroyed their careers and what they think of their future.  And they’re mad about it.  They’re mad at God and everyone and they want you to know it.
  5. The broken and the blessed. These are the people who are like the others.  They have enough excuses that they don’t make them.  They’ve lost more than enough to sit on the sidelines and excuse themselves from playing, but that’s not how they live life.  They take the hand they’ve been dealt and they turn it into a blessing.

Many years ago at my brother’s funeral, a friend gave me a card.  On the front of it was a saying so profound I still have it to this day, framed and in my office.  It goes like this, “Those who hear not the music think the dancers mad.”

In life there are always two things going on: the thing you see and think you know, and the thing you don’t see and think you can never know.  It’s like the difference between words and music.  Words are easy to read, and it’s an intellectual endeavor.  But add music, and everything changes.  It now becomes an endeavor of the spirit and the soul.

As we face a brand new decade, I’m making a decision.  And that decision is:

  1. I will talk less and listen more.
  2. I will fear less and live more.  I’m going to take out of my vocabulary this phrase: “I’m afraid.”  I’m not going to be afraid.  I’m going to live in faith.
  3. I will consume less and create more, realizing that everything that comes to me doesn’t come to me to be consumed on me.  It will be used to create something; maybe a company, a business, a service, a book, a song, a movie to create intelligence, beauty.
  4. I will complain less and thank more. Instead of thinking about those I need to thank, I’m going to thank them for thinking of me.
  5. I will worry less and wait more.
  6. I will tolerate less of my own childishness and ask more from God that proves I am a man.
  7. I will expect less for me and expect more from me.

As we face the beginning of a new year, you can either be bitter or better.  You can face it with joy over the good things to come, or you can be anchored in the past by your bitterness and unforgiveness.  As for me and my house, we are looking forward to this new decade with the greatest faith and the greatest joy we’ve ever known.  I invite you to join us.

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