Day 26 – “SATISFY”

Day 26 – “SATISFY”

During the month of April, I’m writing 30 Words for 30 Days: Thoughts from Six Feet Away, one topic per day. Find out why here.


What does it mean to be satisfied?

One dictionary defines satisfying as “meeting the expectations, needs or desires of someone.”

For many of us, during the COVID-19 era, we’re singing along with the Rolling Stones as they proclaim that “I can’t get no… satisfaction.”

I’ve found that, as many of those things in my life that would usually bring satisfaction have been pulled away, it’s shining a glaring light on what I really rely on for my well being.

I think there are some universal things for all of us that might make us feel better on any given day.

Sunny, pleasant weather. A delicious meal. Doing something we love.

But with our current crisis, we’re also seeing how many other (even little) things we count on to satisfy us.

A few for me:

  • Going to a local coffee shop to think and write
  • Watching my kids play sports
  • Watching basketball on TV
  • Playing basketball at our local rec center with friends
  • Going out to eat as a family, just because or to celebrate birthdays
  • Getting together with friends
  • Taking my daughter to the library or the trampoline park


I wonder what those things are for you. What is on your list?


What truly satisfies

As I sit here on a Sunday morning, anticipating joining in online with our church in several hours, I’m struck by how much God has revealed to me about myself in the last months.

And often how little I truly rely on Him to truly satisfy me.

It’s ironic, because His resources are limitless and not affected by a virus.

His love for me can’t be quarantined or kept six feet away.

More than anyone else, He wants me and loves spending time with me.

He offers me everything that will fill my heart: peace, fulfillment, meaning, rest, joy, acceptance, healing, love.

And yet, so often I let temporary satisfaction from other things fill this hole in my life.

Only to find that when those things fade away, I’m still empty.


The 5000

Jesus’ disciples faced a situation a few thousand years ago that makes me think of today.

They were surrounded by thousands of people who had come out to hear Jesus teach. But they didn’t have a way to feed them.

The restaurants too far away and Door Dash wasn’t around yet (or the internet or cars or free delivery).

And Jesus was asking them to take care of dinner.

How could anything the disciples could do satisfy the appetites of all of those people?

They were at a loss.

Except for one glaring thing.

The very One asking them to feed the crowds was also the Source they were overlooking.

You probably know the rest of the story.

A kid offers up his small lunch, Jesus blesses it and multiplies it and the masses are satisfied.

For me, it’s maybe not so much a few fish and bread that I need to offer up, but instead just a little faith.

When I’m willing to acknowledge that all of these things that I’m missing right now will never truly satisfy me, that… that is when Jesus can take my small pieces of faith in Him and multiply it to fill my soul.


One day

One day in the future, these things that I enjoy will gradually come back.

Some Saturday in the future I’ll be playing basketball with my friends.

I’ll be watching my kids play sports.

I’ll be writing a new blog post from that coffee shop.

And I want to be able to know, on that day, that those things are nice and all… but that even if they were taken away again I’ve found my satisfaction in Jesus alone.

Happy Sunday everyone.


Day 19 – “REST”

Day 19 – “REST”

During the month of April, I’m writing 30 Words for 30 Days: Thoughts from Six Feet Away, one topic per day. Find out why here.


Our bodies need rest.

That’s not a popular sentiment in today’s culture where “busyness” is put up on an altar and worshiped.

I mean, if there is any hint of us not “doing” something, then that means we’re lazy, have a lot of time on our hands, are unmotivated or worse.

If you don’t believe me, then why is it so hard for us to not feel guilty about taking a nap, just sitting and listening to music, or taking time to just think.

And yet I’ve found that one gift out of this whole mess is that we have more time than ever to just… rest. To just be.

For many, it may be a difficult reality.

There is a comfort and familiarity in a busy schedule, in always moving, in having limited time to do trivial things.

But lurking in the shadows is the dark side of that. Behind the scenes, our bodies are stressed, our minds are cluttered, our spirits are uneasy.

Come to Me

When I’m feeling burdened or anxious or exhausted, there is passage in the Bible, an image that I love to come back to.

It is a promise from Jesus Himself. An offer to all of us who realize that we just can’t do it all, that we are worn out and weary.

It comes from the book of Matthew, chapter 11, verse 28:

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

It’s pretty simple really. No “10 Steps To A More Restful You” or hoops to go through.

No course or habit or goals.

Just come. That’s it.

Come to Him and lay those burdens, that schedule, those fears and anxiety at his feet.

Take off that backpack and put it by the door.

And rest.

The Good Shepherd

I picture this passage tied in with one of my other favorites, the well known 23rd Psalm.

The first three verses read:

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.  He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.”

There is a peace and a comfort that I find there.

The thought that our Shepherd knows us well.

He knows we need rest and he makes us lie down in green pastures.

He knows we are thirsty and parched and he leads us to quiet waters where we are refreshed.

He cares for us.

And He invites us to come and rest.


Have you done that?

I hope you’ll take some time to ask God to give you that rest that He promises us.

Especially now.

In the weeks and months to come, activities and stores and gatherings will begin to open back up and schedules will want to get filled again.

Start now to develop a practice of rest.

Our souls depend on it.


Day 12 – “RISE”

Day 12 – “RISE”

During the month of April, I’m writing 30 Words for 30 Days: Thoughts from Six Feet Away, one topic per day. Find out why here.


All great stories have that point in the story where everything seems lost.

The plan falls apart.

The hero is in trouble.

The villain escaped and is looking for lives to take.

Fear and despair have replaced hope.

Honestly, without it the great stories just aren’t that great.

What kind of story would Lord of the Rings be if Frodo and the Fellowship just waltzed on in to Mordor and tossed the ring right into the volcano without even a hint of orc.

What if Vizzini had never stolen the princess in The Princess Bride and Count Rugen had left Inigo’s father alone?

Imagine your favorite movie where there is no resistance, no turn to the story, no moment when you’re not sure how it will turn out?



Into The Depths

For Jesus’ followers, the events that transpired from Thursday through Saturday were like that slow descent into despair.

The story that had seemed so hopeful even days earlier with His triumphant entry into Jerusalem had suddenly turned dramatically.

A new chapter had begun and it wasn’t looking good.

The hero had been killed.

His enemy was looking for souls to take.

The world wasn’t safe. There was nobody left to step in. It was hopeless.

When you watch a movie (unless you checked the run time), you really don’t know how much of the movie is left.

So when you get to that point in the movie, maybe it just ends that way or maybe it doesn’t. You don’t get to decide that or see into the future.

But as we look back on history, 2000 years later, we have the benefit of holding the book in our hands and seeing that there are still a lot of pages left.

What happens on those pages?


Out Of Thin Air

And that’s where it all changed. Easter Sunday.

The Author pulled something out of thin air that we never could have imagined in a million years.

Jesus was dead. Deceased. Finished.

It was final. He was in the grave, wrapped up, grave guarded and sealed.

Nobody comes back from that.

No one.

Especially not the one they had all hoped would save them. The plan must have gone wrong.

Except this time… this time….

This time, something happened no one could have imagined.

Man! I would have loved to have been there when the women who saw the empty tomb told the disciples.

The buzz around that whole place as they tried to understand something that just was outside the realm of possibility.

“You’ve got to be kidding me.”


Time To Rise

And yet that’s exactly how God chose to do it.

Jesus rose.

From the depths, He rose.

From death, He rose.

From despair, He rose.

In one fell swoop God re-framed what is possible.

From an empty tomb came a message that resonates with us even today.

Jesus understands our pain. He knows suffering. He’s been ridiculed, experienced loss, wept tears, felt abandoned.

That weight that we carry with us through each day. That stress that keeps us up at night.

He knows it all.

And with the power of one who has overcome death itself, He wants to come alongside us and give us a new hope and a new future.

Easter is a reminder that no matter how dark the night, we can rise.

No matter how dusty the ashes, we can rise.

No matter how great our mistakes, how deep our pain, how final our future… we can rise.


And though things look bleak in the world on this April 12th, 2020, we will rise.

It may be dark for a while. We may not know when the plot will turn. But it will. And He’ll be right there with us.

Happy Easter! He is Risen.


Day 10 – “GOOD”

Day 10 – “GOOD”

During the month of April, I’m writing 30 Words for 30 Days: Thoughts from Six Feet Away, one topic per day. Find out why here.


Today is Good Friday.

I’ve often wondered about that title.


It was always so confusing to me growing up.

I mean, you’re saying that the day that our Messiah was beaten, ridiculed, flogged, forced to carry his own instrument of torture, crucified and died… that… that was a good… day?

I can think of a lot of days that I would put in the good day category.

My wedding day. The day each of our children were born. Other highlight snapshots throughout my life.

But I don’t think I’d put that day in with all of those.

I know it was just as confusing to Jesus’ followers.

Even though He had told them that it was going to happen numerous times, they just didn’t get it and weren’t prepared for it.


I can’t blame them

Living under the rule of a foreign empire, longing to be delivered and freed, and then putting all of their chips behind one that they believed would restore things to their rightful place.

Only to see him arrested for nothing he did wrong and then ultimately killed.

An innocent man hung on a cross next to criminals.

Like them, I probably would have scattered the night he was arrested as well, afraid of what would happen.

Like Peter, at risk of his own life, I might have denied that I knew him as well.

There was a fear and an uncertainty that filled their first century air.

No one saw this plot twist.

No one knew what to do now that the path they had been on had ended abruptly and they were left staring ahead into the unknown.

They were without hope… and without their Shepherd and leader.


Why we can call it Good

Yet, there was One who knew the way the story was headed.

There was One who understood why it had to happen.

There was a God who knew that a broken world needed a broken body.

A world without hope needed Hope itself.

And it was that God who orchestrated the whole event.

The Bible tells us that “He so loved the world that He sent His only Son…”

He sacrificed what meant most to Him to make a way for us.

We can call it Good Friday because we know, as Paul Harvey so famously says, the rest of the story.


Good for you and me

We’re not so unlike those first century men and women.

Right now, we also are surrounded by fear and uncertainty.

And, like them, we also live in a broken world with pain, disappointment, loss, frustration, loneliness, and despair.

I don’t have to know you to know that you have a story that has had its own share of twists, turns, tragedy and brokenness.

But that is the very reason why he came 2000 years ago.

He came for me. He came for you.

He came to rescue and save, to offer hope and a future, to provide healing and life.

For all.

But to get to Sunday… He had to pass through Friday.

To bring us new life, He had to offer His own.

And He did, willingly.

And that… is good.

Jesus Came For The Forgotten

Jesus Came For The Forgotten

It’s no accident that God invited shepherds to be part of Jesus’ “welcome to Earth” celebration.

This same baby would grow up to be a friend to so many that society had rejected or left on the fringes… and to ultimately be the Good Shepherd who laid down his life for the same.

I’m thankful to be one of those outsiders who have now been brought in, one of those forgotten who has been remembered, one of those lost who has now been found.

What those shepherds saw nestled in that manger hay was Hope with skin on.

They witnessed a new chapter, a new beginning.

When all seemed lost, God made a way.

The babe who would be king.

Born that night.

For all.

Merry Christmas.