Thursday, October 25, 2007

Bringing JOY to the community

At first, I thought the guy at a school crossing on Alder Avenue was nuts!! He would wave and smile real big, then point to every car that passed by. I could only think...CRAZY! But since I drive by him every morning after dropping off my girls, I have found that he makes me smile. He is enjoying his job as a school crossing guard and spreading his enthusiasm to everyone who passes his way.

My first reaction to him was skewed because in this day and age how many people do we see who are truly joyful? I wasn't used to seeing someone who was happy! Even many church people, forgiven and full of hope for life everlasting, tend to walk around with the weight of the world on their shoulders. They don't smile as they walk through the mall, they don't smile as they interact with the lost, they don't appear to have the JOY of the Lord as their strength. I realized I am guilty of that as well!!

This young man, probably 5 feet 10 inches or so, thin as a rail, standing on a sidewalk in a small town, has taught me to smile again. My daily infusion of JOY from his smile reminds me to spread the JOY, to be kind to others, to SMILE, SMILE, SMILE!! My kids are learning from him and I thank God for this sweet man who is happy fulfilling his duties in life! Does he ever get down or sad? Probably. However, from what I see every Monday through Friday, he doesn't share his sadness, he just shares JOY!!!

I hope to find my digital camera (oh, where are you, little camera?? why are you hiding from me??) and take a picture of this young man. I might even stop my car one morning and simply thank him for reminding me to Smile and share the JOY of the Lord! When I do, I will be sure to share the picture here with you!

Take time to renew your JOY in the Lord and be sure to SMILE as you go about your day. There is enough sadness and woe in the world already!!!

P.S. Happiness is a choice!! Choose to smile!!
Choose JOY!!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Not As JOYous A Day As I Hoped

This last Monday started out so joyfully. The kids got to school on time and I went out to breakfast with Tiffany. It was nice to just relax for a little while since my schedule has been soooo hectic lately. We had a nice visit over coffee and our Denny's specials. But alas, as we left, I found that my battery was dead. Ummm, this happened because it had been overcast and I had left my lights on. :{ Tiffany had already left the lot and I quickly called her and asked her to come back. She nor I had jumper cables in our cars and Tiffany asked the security personnel and other men if they cables and was repeatedly told no. Sooooo, I told her that we could run get cables from Wal-mart, return, and jump the car. I just needed to grab my purse, lock the door, and...........OH, NO!!!! I just locked my keys inside the dead car!!!!!!!!!! LOL

Thank God for AAA!!!! The man who answered the phone was so polite and helpful but he hurt my feelings when he laughed when I told him what had happened! By the time the tow truck arrived, I was late for work. So, I called in and told them I wouldn't make it.

I ran an errand and then headed to pick up my girls from Middle School. While nearing the school, Marissa (my oldest who JUST turned 13!!) called and said something was going on on campus. She told me they were in the Library with the Librarian but the campus was in lockdown. I hurried to the school, especially after seeing the helicopter flying over the area where the school is located!! There were at least 15 police cars pulled up in front of the school and many, many police officers standing in front of the school. I finally got to talk to an officer and he refused to say what was wrong but did agree to send in armed officers to escort my girls off the campus. After at least 45 nail biting minutes, they brought out my girls and we left. We hurried to my sons campus which had been out of school now for 30 minutes. I had called and asked if they would head off my son and keep him in the office til I arrived. They said they would....but.....they didn't!!! My son walked home from school, let himself in, and sat down to do his homework. I was much relieved when I realized Justin had made it home safely.
Turns out that a student had prank called the school, saying that someone had a gun on campus and was threatening to shoot people. After all the hullabaloo, they traced the call and arrested the kid!! They are holding the parents responsible for the cost of the 2 helicopters, SWAT team! These parents shoud be made to pay the costs and fines The son should spend some time in juvenile hall. Our youth today view almost everything as a "game"!! Do you agree that the parents should be responsible?

Thursday, October 4, 2007

William Tell Overture For Moms

If you are a Mom, this says it all!!!

Joy of Good Ethos

the distinguishing character, sentiment, moral nature or
guiding beliefs of a people or group
One definition said this word originated from the Greek
and one possible translation in English could be
"to appear."
Now, you might be asking why in the world I am looking up such an obscure word?
And who really cares anyways?
  1. We should all care what others think of us!
  2. We should all be aware that everything we do and say is creating ethos in our lives.
  3. We should all realize that even if we never speak to someone, they perceive our ethos from what they see of us!!


  • Why am I studying this word? I learned it last year in my speech class. However, until I heard it again this semester while in the classes I am SI Leader for, I hadn't grasped what ethos truly is! The instructor I work with was talking to one of her classes last week about ethos and what it means to a speaker and the audience who is listening. She made this statement that has been eating at me all week; "From the moment you walk into a room, your audience is "judging" your credibility. Even a trip to the grocery store could establish your ethos with someone who will hear you speak in the future!" She told of going to the store, through the register to make her purchase and having a surface conversation with the female clerk. Several months later, the clerk showed up in one of her speech classes. Both the clerk and the instructor had an "impression" or perception of who the other person was based on that quick experience months before.
  • This perception is based on your appearance and clothing, your choice of words when you converse, your facial expressions (even when you aren't aware that someone is watching you ) and the car you drive. If this is the case and people are always "perceiving" our ethos, then everything we say, wear, and do, is creating an awareness of who we are. Now, I know you might be thinking this is just for speech makers but if so, you're wrong!
  • As a people who have surrendered their sinful past to Christ, repented, been baptized in Jesus' Name, and received the Holy Ghost evidenced by speaking in tongues, we are commanded to share the Gospel. We are to be a "separate people" who live sober lives that magnify God. Are we exemplifying Christ? Are our actions speaking louder than our words? Do we practice what we preach or believe? Do we treat people, both saved and unsaved, like Christ would treat them? Do we speak in love? Or do we dress one way, professing a christian walk while we sin, treat our friends and enemies with disdain, and deliver a mixed-up message to those who see us?
  • The Bible says for those who are saved to come out of the world, be a separate people and then to go out to spread the good news of Jesus' saving grace. If we are going to be a shining beacon of hope to the lost, our ethos must send out that same message. When people see us as we go about our day, they must see the love of Christ. They must see someone who doesn't look like the world, act like the world, or talk like the world. They have to see someone who doesn't go where the world goes but walks upright and holy. We must make wise choices in our actions, our words, and our clothing so that those who are lost can see someone who is DIFFERENT from everyone else around them! We must appear as one who walks humbly before the Lord and who practices what they preach.
The meaning of this little Greek word, ethos, has powerfully impacted my every thought and action. Especially, now that I am working outside my home and coming in contact with the lost everyday. I want my life to speak to those I meet and create a question in their minds as to why I seem so different. I want them to wonder and then ask why I live the way I do. I want those at church to feel that they can trust me to be in tune with God when I sing, play the piano, or lead the choir. I want God to know He can trust me to be a living example of His forgiving grace. I want my children and husband to be able to perceive a change in me. To feel they can trust me to do what is right.
A song God blessed me with, Lifesong, is a shining example of this quest. The words are in the margin. I pray that this post blesses you and that we all become beacons of positive ethos, or moral character, that proclaim the salvation of our God!