Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Unexpected Results

My sister sent me one of those funny e-mails today and I thought I would use it.
Yesterday I was at my local COSTCO buying a large bag of Purina dog chow for my loyal pet, Biscuit, the Wonder Dog and was in the checkout line when woman behind me asked if I had a dog.

What did she think I had, an elephant? So since I'm retired and have little to do, on impulse I told her that no, I didn't have a dog, I was starting the Purina Diet again. I added that I probably shouldn't, because I ended up in the hospital last time, but that I'd lost 50 pounds before I awakened in an intensive care ward with tubes coming out of most of my orifices and IVs in both arms.

I told her that it was essentially a perfect diet and that the way that it works is to load your pants pockets with Purina nuggets and simply eat one or two every time you feel hungry. The food is nutritionally complete so it works well and I was going to try I t again. (I have to mention here that practically everyone in line was now enthralled with my story.) Horrified, she asked if I ended up in intensive care because the dog food poisoned me. I told her no, I stepped off a curb to sniff an Irish Setter's hiney and a car hit us both.

I thought the guy behind her was going to have a heart attack he was laughing so hard. Costco won't let me shop there anymore.
There are unexpected results in so much of life. When you are kind to others, others are kind to you. When you seem to be giving all you have, you are being blessed abundantly. When you show love, love is lavished on you. When you finally give us doing it your way and you do it Gods' way, victory.

Gal 2:20
20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

In Him
J. Tom Washburn

Friday, August 21, 2009


Waiting has never been my strong suit. Even when I knew something was coming, waiting was hard. I remember playing with those old Jack-In-The-Box toys and I jumping every time Jack popped out. I knew it was coming, but I was still surprised. I remember waiting for Christmas morning, time seemed to drag on and on, I knew it was coming, I even knew when it was coming, but it was still hard to wait.
When Jesus feeds the 5000 men, He gives thanks before the food is given out, have you ever asked yourself "Why did Jesus give thanks?". I think He may have been giving thanks for what God was about to do.
As children of God, we should stop from time to time and give thanks for what God is about to do. He already knows the blessings awaiting us. He already knows the transformation working inside of us. He already knows the glory prepared for us.
As I try and patiently wait for the blessings of God, I am asking God to give me expectant eyes and a faith filled heart.

Jer 29:11
11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

In Him
J. Tom Washburn

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Looking Down

As I looked at all the school supplies that are being prepared for the kids, I remembered a time in my life when I felt unworthy. I remember the feeling of having others look down on me because I wasn't as "cool" as they were. I remember the fear of having others look down on me because I didn't have the right kind of shoes, clothes, or stuff. I remember how others looked down on me because I wasn't athletic, cool or smart. I remember being the last one to be chosen and I remember being the smallest one in my class.
I hated it when people looked down on me, it made me feel unworthy and unwanted.
I don't think Jesus ever looked down on anyone,... except once. As Jesus hung on the cross He looked down and said "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." (Luke 23:34)

In Him
J. Tom Washburn

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Shake It Off and Step Up

One of my favorite preacher illustrations is
Shake It Off And Step Up
By: Author Unknown

A parable is told of a farmer who owned an old mule. The mule fell into the farmer's well. The farmer heard the mule 'braying' - or - whatever mules do when they fall into wells. After carefully assessing the situation, the farmer sympathized with the mule, but decided that neither the mule nor the well was worth the trouble of saving. Instead, he called his neighbors together and told them what had happened...and enlisted them to help haul dirt to bury the old mule in the well and put him out of his misery.

Initially, the old mule was hysterical! But as the farmer and his neighbors continued shoveling and the dirt hit his back...a thought struck him. It suddenly dawned on him that every time a shovel load of dirt landed on his back...HE SHOULD SHAKE IT OFF AND STEP UP! This he did, blow after blow.

"Shake it off and step up...shake it off and step up...shake it off and step up!" he repeated to encourage himself. No matter how painful the blows, or distressing the situation seemed the old mule fought "panic" and just kept right on SHAKING IT OFF AND STEPPING UP!

It wasn't long before the old mule, battered and exhausted, STEPPED TRIUMPHANTLY OVER THE WALL OF THAT WELL! What seemed like it would bury him, actually blessed him...all because of the manner in which he handled his adversity.

Gen 50:20
20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.

In Him
J. Tom Washburn

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Giving Thanks

Have you ever thought about the word thanks. Thanks seems like such a small word for such a big feeling. When somebody shows you love, even when you don't deserve it, thanks seems like too small a word for such a big gift. When somebody is willing to stand beside you, even when you are making a mistake, thanks doesn't seem like enough. Thanks is what we say when we are given a piece of bubble gum and it is what we say when the greatest of burdens is lifted off of our shoulders.
For the next two weeks I am focusing on being thankful in my lessons. Thankful for what God is doing and has done, and thankful or what God is going to do.
It seems like such a small word, but what it does for the heart of the giver is miraculous.

1Thes 5:16-18
Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.

In Him
J. Tom Washburn

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Are you ready for some ...

All across the state, young men are beginning football practice. This dreaded ritual is called two a days. These two a days consume the lives of these young men. When they get up in the morning, they are thinking about practice. When they are home and when they are eating, they are thinking about rest and the next practice. When they go to bed at night, they are thinking about the next day of practice. These young men go through all of the pain and work, so that they can perform well on Friday night.
Football is just a game, and these young men go through all of that just for a game, don't you think we should be just as prepared for life.
Paul says in 1 Cor 9:24-27
24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.
25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.
26 Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.
27 No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
I hope all of our young men have great seasons, but my real prayer is that all of us will have great lives that glorify God.
In Him
J. Tom Washburn