No More Stumbling Blocks!

No More Stumbling Blocks

Oh, the hurdles the befall us. Whether it’s society throwing a curve, or a roadblock making the journey tougher, or some people throwing down a stumbling block in front of us – when life trips us up, it hurts.

No more stumbling blocks!

A few stumbling blocks to avoid:

  • A friend gossiping about another person
  • You didn’t get that job (or raise)
  • Someone criticized you
  • That tiny, but habitual, sinning thing that seems to interrupt your spiritual growth
  • Getting frustrated at yellow lights (or brake lights)
  • Dirty looks from passersby

You know what trips you up. Here’s a verse (and two versions) to recall when hurdles come your way. It’s Psalm 119:165 and I’d ask you place both the KJV and NIV into memory.

Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them – KJV

Great peace have those who love your law, and nothing can make them stumble – NIV

Catch some of the key phrases for those who love God’s Word?  Great Peace. Nothing Shall Offend Them. Nothing Can Make Them Stumble. 

Audience of One, remember? If someone looks at you sideways or starts to show their fangs, you can love them as you walk away (and pray they calm down until you can gather again).

Side step the tripping points. Have faith and patience with life’s curves. And make sure you’re not throwing down blocks in front of others. (Rom 14:13)

Remember the Dick Van Dyke Show? In one season’s opening titles, Dick’s character, Rob Petrie, trips over the ottoman as he walks in. But he learns, and in another season he side steps it.  If Rob can learn, so can you.

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Until I Found One

Angela Sansone: HeroI never believed much in heroes
Except for the fictional kind
They’re great in books and movies
Never thought in real life I’d find

One who would be honest and true
Able to get serious and also have fun
Loving me in every failure and all falls
Loving others with an Audience of One

Knowing our union is of God above
It’s with great confidence and care
I keep plowed the road in front of you clean
So with others you can be shared

Know I love you
More than any previous day
If there’s anything you need or desire
We will find a way.

I love you, Angela!  Happy Anniversary :-)


By Fruits or By Fangs

Fruits or Fangs?

Who do you hang around most? Does “Peer Pressure” sometimes sway your decision?

A man I know was nicely-versed in Scripture … and used it when it benefited him. But in a moment’s notice he could easily turn to cursing, gossiping, threatening, boasting … and later apologize for his fleshly battle.

If this were an occasional occurrence, grace wins (along with loving and reproving truth). But as this proved to be consistent habit, and that he would bare his “fangs” more than “fruit” – it was best to just walk away.

Walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh. In ourselves as well as others, we should be able to recognize behavior as either by the works of the flesh or by the Fruits of the Spirit (Gal 5:16-26).

When it comes to who we choose to hang around or talk with most often, choose those who show Fruits consistently.

As for those who show their fangs too often? Sometimes, walking away isn’t only best for you – but for them, too. Fangs desire an audience.

Just walk away. Point up. Audience of One.

photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar via photopin cc

Pthu! – To Sin


Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil men. Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away. (Pro 4:14-15)

Most of the time, you can taste it in your throat. Or feel it in your gut – right behind your belly button. Sin.

A man I know used to travel down a country highway on his commute. There was a porn shop sitting back there, right next to a gas station. He got addicted (to the porn, not the gas). It was ruining his life. And he began to change his ways.

He was doing great kicking the the habit, but one day he forgot to get gas in the city. On the way home, he stopped for gas – and fell back into that nasty habit.

He needed to find another way home or another job. It was a good job and the nearest way home other than that country road would take him 30 minutes out of the way.

Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.

Trust your gut. Spit it out.

Pthu! to Sin.

photo credit: Country Road by mrbillt6 via photopin cc

Because I Am Fragile…Trusting God

Road To SomewhereWe’re on the move again. With God guiding our steps (Prov 20:24 & Prov 16:9).

While we have an outline and a map, an itinerary and a plan – we will always be ready to pivot on God’s command for the sake of Christ.

Some people may not understand – and sometimes, I’m not sure I do either. It’s not wanderlust. It’s not fear of commitment (to people). It is our life.

The confidence and trust we have is this: If our journey takes us in a direction we think is right, and it doesn’t turn out the way we have planned, we trust in God. Paul had a vision to build a church, got thrown in jail, and trusted in God. And the jailer and his family became members of the church (See Acts 16).

We have a vision. And yet, there is a possibility of something else.

“Because I am fragile. And I don’t know God’s plans.” – Susie Davis

That quote rung true and comforting, sending me to James 5:13-15 this morning as a reminder to always trust God, no matter the circumstance. For what is my life?

We soon depart for South Dakota as our next short-term mission. After South Dakota, the vision is in process of definition and preparation. If these planned paths get diverted for some reason (and also if they don’t), we look towards God – even if a diversion seems to be bad news. 

Photo on Flickr by Stuck in Customs