Just Another Day

In Soul by Caleb

It’s just another day, until it’s not.

“And there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them.” (Luke 2:8-9)

You might be just going about your business, doing your daily routine. Then, angels, light, and good news. And everything changes.

Sometimes, the thing you’ve been waiting for, hoping for, wondering if…just appears in the quiet of night. You can’t predict exactly when or how. If it’s a God-thing, you can count on it, bank on it, believe it; but even still, it will take you by surprise. Jesus and his angels did—and they still do.

Christmas time is a reminder that Light is still beating back the darkness. But the miraculous shows up in the mundane. “Glory” appears in the everyday moments of our story and often when we least expect it.

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Names & Megaphones

In Heart by Caleb

Everyone loves the sound of their own name. Particularly when it’s shouted with volume and enthusiasm.

When I pick Jack up front school, all the kids gather in a grassy waiting area. Then, as parents and care-givers arrive to retrieve each kid, volunteer students and adults with reflective vests and megaphones are positioned along the driveway to shout each child’s name, indicating to the child that their ride is here and to hustle to the car.

Volunteer: “Child’s name?”
Parent: “Jack Anderson”
Volunteer: “Jack Anderson, your ride is here. Jack Anderson!”

Jack’s face lights up. He’s heard his name, and so has everyone else. For the moment in time it’s Jack’s name that rings over the school yard – “Jack Anderson!” – he glows. Jack grabs his backpack and sprints for the car with a grin he tries unsuccessfully to hide.

Everyone loves their name—especially when it’s shouted with positive intentions.

Remember that this week. Names on cards… names on gifts… names in lights… names on microphones… It matters—to everyone.

Give someone the gift of their name.

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Hard Work

In Heart, Mind by Caleb

Whatever you do, work hard when you do it.

All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty. (Proverbs 14:23)

You don’t have to love it. You don’t have to do it forever. You don’t have a boss that notices. You don’t have to be compensated appropriately (yet).

Whatever you do, work hard. It will—eventually—go well for you. Hard work brings profit.

Profit:

* growth of the thing

* growth of reputation

* personal growth

* financial gain

* increased opportunity

* satisfaction

* self-confidence

Whatever you do today, do it well. It will pay off, one way or another.

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Proud of You

In Heart, Mind by Caleb

Be proud of the person, not the performance.

Losing, failing, struggling—these are part of life. Without them we don’t learn, build grit, and grow further.

So we do our friends and family a disservice when we praise only wins, gains, and positive outcomes. Instead, praise the person, passion, and perseverance. The long game is about enduring the ups, downs, and disappointments that build us into better people. The outcomes have a way of taking care of themselves. And—for the determined—the outcomes get better with time.

“I’m proud of you for staying true to yourself and not giving up.”

VS

“I’m proud of you for winning by a large margin.”

We all need to learn to be proud of the process. Perseverance through pain helps us reach our real potential.

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Anything For A Laugh

In Mind by Caleb

Know what you need, and find it in healthy ways.

My son Henry will do anything for a laugh.

Henry: “Edie, kick me in the face.”

Edie: “Ok.”

Kick!

Everyone laughs. And, for Henry, it’s worth it.

There’s something you’re willing to say and do dumb things for. Do you know what it is? Do you know what you’re so desperate to have that you’re acting out and being crazy? For me, I can obsess about progress. I need to feel like I’m making progress, and when I feel like I’m not—or it’s not fast enough—I’m tempted to do dumb things. I can be critical of myself and others. I’m tempted to take shortcuts. And I can act out in ways to self-sooth because I’m feeling bad about my slacker self.

But the reality is that progress happens when I’m embrace the process. Leaning into the process and enjoying the journey is my path toward healthy progress and fulfillment.

What about you?

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In Person

In Body, Heart by Caleb

Whenever possible, it’s better in person.

Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together… (Hebrews 10:24-25)

Hand-written is better than typed. Calling is better than writing. In person is better than the phone.

When we’re together, our words actually, physically reach the other person with their vibrations. We “feel” each other, in the most literal sense.
Christmas, too, reminds us that God came, in person. In living color, God showed us how to be human and live lives of love and connection. Nature tells a story. Written Word is helpful and life-giving. But in person—that was best…and is still best for us.

Let’s get together.

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Giving Tuesday

In Heart, Mind by Caleb

 It’s Giving Tuesday, and millions of people will make small and large donations to organizations and individuals in a spirit of generosity, kindness, and love.

 I’m not writing this to convince you to give. In fact, maybe you SHOULD NOT give.

 You probably shouldn’t give…

  • if you feel manipulated 
  • if you feel pressured 
  • if you don’t care and don’t care to care

If you don’t care but you want to care—give. (The heart follows.)

If you care and you want to contribute—give. (The heart grows.)

If you feel a strange, uncomfortable desire to be generous and sense the smile of God—give. (God especially seems to enjoy generosity with a smile.)

Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. (2 Corinthians 9:7)

Spirit Farm exists to help people connect with God, others, and themselves — growing spiritually in the rhythms of real life. If you resonate with that and would like to support our vision , you can give to Spirit Farm HERE…but only if it makes you smile 🙂

 *Spirit Farm (a d.b.a of “Hope for Life”) is a non-profit and contributions are tax-deductible. Our giving page is safe and oh so simple.

Thank you for your generosity!

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Cold Means Slower

In Mind, Soul by Caleb

There’s a season for everything under heaven. God designed this human experience with seasons that point us in directions, orient our priorities, and cause us to look at life a bit differently. 

I was just in the mountains and there was a lot of snow. So much so that we needed chains for our tires. Putting on chains isn’t the easiest thing—especially for me—particularly when it’s freezing and you’re on the side of a mountain road. But, they help keep us safe.

They also force you to drive slow. Snow means slow. And there’s beauty to it. You might not move as fast or accomplish as much, but when it’s cold outside, something else is happening.

Everything in nature slows down as it chills and freezes. Shouldn’t we? Perhaps God is slowing us down for a new year reset. Helping us to reevaluate what’s been and gear up for what’s coming.

Embrace the chill. Embrace the season. Don’t be afraid to take it a little slower.

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Waiting by the Curb

In Heart, Mind by Caleb

What are you so excited about that you’ll wait all day by the curb?

My boys sat in sub-50 degree weather for a good 90 minutes “waiting for Amazon”. Titi had bought a present and told them it’d arrive via Amazon delivery. So they waited. Snacks, chairs, coats, and drinks. They waited—content and excited.

What are you hopeful for? What are you waiting on? What’s coming and you’re willing it so with your committed enthusiasm?

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in his word I put my hope. I wait for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning… (Psalm 130:5-6)

A verse like this can seem distant and unrelated to my 21st century life. Until… until I realize that I’m waiting, too. There are things I think are coming in my future. There are hopes and goals that I’m crystal clear on. And I think those things are “waiting on the Lord”, because He made me and it’s believed that He puts desires in our hearts. Sure, sometimes, we probably get it wrong and desire things just because other people have them. But—sometimes—we’re listening to the whisper in our souls, and waiting on God like “watchmen wait for the morning”.

Dream. Hope. Hustle. Wait. Repeat.

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Thanksgiving Way

In Heart, Mind by Caleb

I like to post about Thanksgiving AFTER Thanksgiving. When I feel fat, tired, and a little sick from the kid at dinner who wiped his snotty nose on me. When the house is less full and the fridge is packed with leftovers. When there’s more to clean up than to prepare for. When everyone is posting about their experiences and I’m tempted to compare. When ads are bombarding me with ”Black Friday” excuses to believe I’m lacking something.

That’s when I want to be thankful.

Thankful, not because things are or were perfect,  but because we were together. Thankful because we are alive. Thankful because good is springing up everywhere I look—when I look for it.

Thankful because thanksgiving is a WAY, not a day. And it’s a better way.

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