We Fall Down But Still Get Up…

“For a saint is just a sinner who fell down and got up”    ~ from the song We Fall Down

Even as people attempting to follow the loving example of Christ Jesus, we’re going to fall down every once in a while. We’re only human, after all. Doesn’t that seem like an important part of the “forgiveness equation?”

When you have a few minutes, experience this song on YouTube (HERE) – We Fall Down. Recommended years back by a leader of another church’s jail ministry worship team, this song and the music video are impactful.

“Get back up again!” is sung in such an encouraging way. When each of us makes one of the “suitable number of mistakes” while trying to follow our faith with the Spirit’s help, we can enthusiastically “get back up again” with faith and continued conviction.

ACTIONS: step out in faith, being willing to “fall down” every once in a while, filled with confidence in grace and mercy

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!

P.S. Don’t you love “God winks?” While contemplating this message, a complementary posting from Our Daily Bread appeared – check that out HERE if you have time/inclination



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 30, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

A Gratitude Makeover…

Having an attitude of gratitude is a good goal. The Guideposts webpage HERE shares sixteen items that can help with our gratitude makeover efforts.

ACTION OPPORTUNITY: is there one of the gratitude makeover items that can find its way into your activities today? Perhaps #15 – “set an alarm on your phone at a certain time each day to say a prayer for the helpers in your life”?  🙂

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 23, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

We SHALL Overcome…

“We shall overcome – deep in my heart I do believe we shall overcome.” ~ Martin Luther King Jr.

The song “We Shall Overcome” suffers “copyright confusion”, with roots in Cincinnati, Ohio according to THIS source; yet SongFacts says differently HERE.

While not knowing Charles Tindley nor Louise Shropshire nor Pete Seeger, maybe the important thing to them would be that this song endures with some of the principal musical and lyrical messages they wanted to share. The fact that the civil rights movement could use it effectively and many others now have this in the public domain for use whenever they wish would hopefully please all three!

ACTION OPPORTUNITY: Listen to these songs one right after the other to focus on the messages and hear the similarities

PRAYER: Dear God, throughout our days, may we worry less of credit, and focus more on praise!  Amen. 

How can you help another overcome this day? Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit!

 



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 23, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

Leaning Into Harmony…

On this Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2022, we share another reference from a mentor of MLK, Howard Thurman. During Thurman’s The Sound of the Genuine (HERE) address to Spelman College in 1980 he says

The sound of the genuine is flowing through you. Don’t be deceived and thrown off by all the noises that are a part even of your dreams, your ambitions, so that you don’t hear the sound of the genuine in you, because that is the only true guide that you will ever have, and if you don’t have that you don’t have a thing.

In the post Leaning Into Harmony, Brian McLaren references Thurman’s “the sound of the genuine”:

This coming-into-union, this encounter-without-judgment, this knowing-without-control goes from me to you to us and beyond, to plants and animals and all of the created world. We come to hear the “same music,” the sound of the genuine [1], flowing through everything, every thing, every thing.

And this, I propose, is the core of spiritual experience shared by all or nearly all religions.

Let’s continue with The Work of Christmas challenges from Thurman, allowing the sound of the genuine to move through us in finding, healing, feeding, releasing and rebuilding ways over these coming days…  



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 23, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

The Work of Christmas…

Literary works of Howard Thurman have been showing up in materials recently and there are likely several reasons why. This highlight of the Wikipedia summary of Howard Thurman’s life may share a little reason:

Thurman was a prolific author, writing twenty books on theology, religion, and philosophy. The most famous of his works, Jesus and the Disinherited (1949), deeply influenced Martin Luther King Jr. and other leaders, both black and white, of the modern Civil Rights Movement. Thurman had been a classmate and friend of King’s father at Morehouse College. King visited Thurman while he attended Boston University, and Thurman in turn mentored his former classmate’s son and his friends.

With observation of MLK Day being this upcoming Monday, it seems a wonderful time to spotlight Thurman. And on the heels of the Christmas season with a look forward to MLK Jr., this gem – The Work of Christmas (HERE) – from Thurman feels like a good fit. It’s a shorty and concludes with this goal:

To bring peace among brothers,
To make music in the heart

Let’s take that challenge in The Work of Christmas, allowing the Spirit to move through us in finding, healing, feeding, releasing and rebuilding ways over these coming days…  



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 16, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

Are We Up to the Challenge?

On January 4, 2022 in this post HERE, Diana Butler Bass says

“This post is a plea to see clearly where we are and what we need to do in the weeks ahead.” 

She lays out the fact that on January 4th there were over 1,000,000 new cases of COVID in that single day in the United States! Is that possible? Diana goes on to share many helpful perspectives including this challenge:

But this is our challenge, our time to do what is right, to love our neighbors, to put hard words into the world even to those who don’t believe those words. Isn’t that what it always means to be a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim, a Buddhist, a decent moral human? To heal even when people don’t “believe in” the disease? To offer mercy to those who act unmercifully? To care for those in despair?

Let’s take that challenge, allowing the Spirit to move through us in loving, healing, merciful, caring ways over these coming days…

PRAYER: Creator God, expand my willingness and energy to offer love, healing, mercy and caring to all neighbors in my sphere of influence… Amen!



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 16, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

I Know Who Holds Tomorrow…

William and Ardythe Petersen, in their book, The Complete Book of Hymns share this about the song I Don’t Know About Tomorrow and its author, Ira Stanphill:

Though he wrote about 400 gospel songs during his lifetime, he had gone through a long period where he produced nothing at all. But this song became a testimony to God’s faithfulness, and marked a new start for him.

You can read more about the song I Don’t Know About Tomorrow and what the Petersens have to say about it in a biblical context HERE.

We struggle when hearing of troubling medical news for dear friends, pandemic effects, hunger challenges and so many other difficulties. This statement of trust near the end of the article shares good perspective (though not always easy to see in the midst of the terrible storms in life)

Rather than counting on material things, as we look to the Lord, we can trust Him to take the “all things” of life–whether of pains or pleasures–and weave them together into something that is ultimately good and beautiful, using them to make us more like the Lord Jesus.

The song I Don’t Know About Tomorrow has been performed by various artists. The rendition HERE by the musical group The Petersens is touching (same name as the book authors – maybe distant relatives?)  Definitely worth a listen.

May this day provide evident fruits of the Spirit in “all things” for you and those you love … for we know who holds our hand…



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 9, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

Following the Star to an Epiphany…

This explanation of Epiphany (link HERE) provides good context for our Christmastide and beyond, including these compelling sentences:

“But the joy of Christmas isn’t over yet because we can choose to recognize the mercy of God in the everyday stuff. With open hearts and expectant outlooks, believers can have epiphany moments any day.”


On this 2022 Epiphany and future days,

may we find “aha” moments to energize our ways!

Enjoy the day, filled with the Spirit



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 9, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

Exploration (continued) …

Some of this may look familiar – it is yesterday’s post with valuable additions prompted by two CP contributors (in red font below)

The Merton Prayer shows up HERE on the Yale Divinity School webpage under “Seize the Day: Vocation, Calling, Work.” It’s wonderful commentary, including these important sections

… and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so…

…But I believe that the desire to please you
does in fact please you…

May we all find trust and minimal/no fear in the midst of our exploration, filled with confidence that we are pleasing God by our Spirit-led, prayerful explorations. Carpe diem! 

Where will your explorations take you in 2022? HERE is fitting prose from L.R. Knost, with advice on how to proceed along life’s path, including a perspective of life as “breathtakingly beautiful”…

Enjoy the day, filled with the exploratory Spirit

P.S.  And on a lighter note, kudos to Calvin & Hobbes (Bill Watterson) for the exploratory perspective HERE



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 9, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip

Exploration …

The Merton Prayer shows up HERE on the Yale Divinity School webpage under “Seize the Day: Vocation, Calling, Work.” It’s wonderful commentary, including this important section

… and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so…

May we all find trust and minimal/no fear in the midst of our exploration. Carpe diem! 

Where will your explorations take you in 2022?

Enjoy the day, filled with the exploratory Spirit

P.S.  And on a lighter note, kudos to Calvin & Hobbes (Bill Watterson) for the exploratory perspective HERE



Lectionary Texts for Sunday, January 9, 2022:



Know someone who might like receiving Christian Playbook messages like this?  If so, please forward this message and they can sign up WITH THIS LINK


CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK HUMOR – regular updates, including toonfever.com

STREAMING WORSHIP SERVICES – Cincinnati, Bowling Green and more!


CLICK ON ICONS BELOW FOR LINKS TO CHRISTIAN PLAYBOOK PAGES ON DEVOTIONALS, PRAYERS, MUSIC, STUDY AND LOVE

DevotionalPraying handsSingendes Quartett3StudyMobius strip