Messy Kids? Use this Bib

Do you have a messy kid?

Are you tired of food stained clothes?

My wife and I were. Then we tried the Kladd Prickar bibs from Ikea.

They are inexpensive ($5.99 for two), they cover everything, and when you’re done you can throw them in the wash.

We’ve received so many positive comments on them from other parents, I thought it might be worthwhile to share.

*I have not been paid by Ikea for this post.

Want your church to grow?

I just read this article from ChristianToday.com:

Want your church to grow? Then it’s time to surprise people…

I thought this quote was particularly interesting.

Let’s be clear and honest with ourselves. Most of our friends and colleagues have no idea about how great our churches are. How surprised they would actually be by some of the small, but important things on offer.

A warm welcome. A decent cup of coffee. A chat with normal, nice people from all walks of life (who may or may not be wearing sandals). We have music which might confound expectations. We look out for each other’s wellbeing in a way which is profoundly counter-cultural. Far from being cold, boring and out of touch, we offer the chance to be part of an institution which cares about its local community, and ultimately, an opportunity to experience the love of God.

We need to do a better job telling our story.  

We need to sell ourselves, our experience and our God. 

I think, as a whole, we’ve been doing a poor job of that.

It’s time to reevaluate our plan.

Make Disciples of All Nations

In Matthew 28:19 Jesus instructs his disciples to “go and make disciples of all nations.”

With the internet, we have the tools to communicate the message of Christ across the globe, but there is also a “nation” in our midst that we need to reach.

The results of a study on Teens and Tweens (Ages 8 to 18) by Common Sense Media were released this past week. They found that tweens spend on average 6 hours in front of screens, and teens about 9 hours. Whether on computers, tablets or smartphones 39% of teen’s digital screen time is devoted to watching, listening, or reading, 24% to playing games or browsing the web and 26% to social media. They also found that mobile devices made up 41% of all screen time for tweens and 46% for teens.

With so much time devoted to screens and mobile devices, it’s time to start thinking seriously about how and where we communicate the message of Christ to this young generation. We need to travel to their “nation” to share the message of Christ.

Now, I am not saying we abandon all the tried and true practices of the past. We just need to look for ways these new tools for communication can assist us in our efforts.

Pain

It’s a good thing we can’t remember the sensation of pain. 

Just a few days removed from the event and I’m already starting to downplay what I felt on Tuesday morning.

It began like any normal day. My oldest son woke up early. In an effort to squeeze in a little more sleep I opted to rock with him for a little while. Only I didn’t last long before the pain began.

Initially, I thought it to be gas. I know. Pleasant, right? But it soon became evident it was something more. 

The pain, originating in the lower left side of my abdomen, increased and became more intense. In an effort to ease the pain, I went back to bed to lay down. That didn’t help. I couldn’t get comfortable and my back began to hurt as well. 

Over the next hour I tossed and turned in my bed trying every position imaginable. My poor wife must have thought I was dying. I’m sure I thought I was too.

About the time someone arrived to watch the kids, the pain finally began to dissipate. Even still, we still made the trip to the ER.

The ER waiting room was oddly empty, which was a pleasant surprise. I checked in and recounted the mornings events to the staff. 

After a urine analysis, and a blood test, I was diagnosed with kidney stones.

They say kidney stones are one of the most painful conditions you can experience. At the time, I’m sure I would have agreed. But, here, a few days removed, I’m beginning to doubt that. I survived. I’m feeling good. How bad could it have really been? 

Our bodies are amazing. How can we experience the worst pain one day, and totally forget it the next? I can’t begin to understand. I’d like to think there was some planning that went into it. I’d like to think it was intentional. What do you think?

All I know is, I’m glad we don’t remember pain. 

Oh, and I’m glad that kidney stone episode is over. Let’s hope it doesn’t return.

Father, Husband, Son

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