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We’ve all been trapped in a meeting with a Carl.  Loud.  Speaking over everyone else.  The holder of every worthwhile idea.

Obviously, my first experience was with someone named Carl, a fellow student.  Maybe your Carl is actually a Carla because Carl comes in many guises. Carl might be an aunt who monopolizes every conversation.  Or a boss who dismisses the ideas of others as impossible or not how we do it. One factor remains the same, no one but no one else can have a worthwhile idea.  Carl contributes to every conversation and squashes it flat.

When you have a great idea or enthusiasm for a topic, it can be brutally difficult not to be a Carl. Especially when you are eager to help. You want to fill everyone with the same energy that has filled you.  The cause is urgent.  You want everyone to see that.

God knows that.  God knows that when we are filled with the Spirit we want to share it, sometimes more forcefully than is polite.  But that is why God gifts us with more than the Spirit.  We are also given self-discipline and love.  Together, that love can encourage us to draw out others who  may be timid and less confident to speak out.  What is your idea?  Have you observed something that might be helpful?

The power of the spirit enables us to bring change.  Love and self-discipline impact how we do it.  Three gifts braided together can truly be a force to move mountains.


For me, the holidays often seem like a loving time of year.  People are more considerate and think of the needy.  They hold doors open for each other.  They’re civil.

Still, this time of year is difficult for so many.  The invisible.  The unheard.  Those without power.

As you are selecting treats, wrapping gifts, and sending out cards, please take a moment.  Do something for those who have no voice.

That could mean making a small donation to an organization such as Heifer or Habitat.  Or maybe you’d prefer to work a shift at your local food pantry.  That’s a popular one here and slots for volunteers are already full.  But, and this one is really important, kids will be off school. This means that those who normally eat two meals a day at school may be doing without.  Consider putting together a special food offering.

Spare some love for those who have little or no power.  Bless them as God has blessed you.



Have a Mary Little Christmas

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