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with Common Sense 4 Uncommon People

August, 2014


Regrets ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 31st, 2014 | Category: Disappointment, Hope, Inspirational, Jesus Follower | Comments


I awoke today thinking of pain, loss, fears and trials. The patterns of every life, regardless of their blessings. I don’t dwell on those patterns but I can not ignore them either. We all experience loss and those around us will one day experience our loss as well. I thought of my grandparents and their grandparents before them. Those early colonists and immigrants, dating back beyond the 1,700’s. They (both yours and mine), only marked our paths, not our destiny’s. Our lineage neither defines us nor entitles us, we are (each and every one) new and unique, custom tailored for a God given purpose. Our ancestors were here and there leaders, making some small and other large marks in history. Many acknowledged God, but none (in my lineage) were pastors, yet all in some way were ministers. That was not their calling, yet they served The Lord our God in their own way and then moved on. God was a part of every honest, hard working life, not merely a footnote, an integral, foundational part. We could not become like our God of gentle mercies without knowing pain, loss, fears and trials. These experiences are a part of our making. They are the distinguishing, contrasting colors in our lives, which will eventually carve us out of the graying herds. Knowing this does not make these experiences any easier, but knowing our God does. This relational knowledge lends purpose to every hardship, the last and greatest of which will (or can) deliver us into the loving hands which hold our universe along with everything and one in it.

I am afraid that when I come to you again, my God will make me humble before you. I may have to cry over the loss of some who sinned before. Many of them have still not changed their hearts to be sorry for their evil lives, their sexual sins, and the shameful things they have done.” (2 Corinthians 12:21 ERV). Our pain and loss comes in many forms, and our tears drip down at the least convenient of times. In this respect we are no different than our Lord, His Apostles and disciples, the only difference being that they knew, with doubtless faith, where our Lord had gone and was lovingly waiting for them to catch up. They knew of the kingdom beyond the horizon, which is far better than the one they wrote, ministered and preached the good news from within. They knew from where they came and toward whom they were headed. If we don’t know Jesus, intimately, then we can not know what they knew. We can not navigate the pain, loss, fear and trials which we certainly will experience. Sometimes these trials build walls between ourselves and God. Sometimes our self constructed walls never crumble. We go another way, away from God, toward certain death (separation from God). God does not bring misery to us, this world and our choices do that. God may well use our tears to erode the walls we’ve built but He never makes His children cry. Changing our hearts for the better is a choice, one that hardships can foster or mentor, but only if we can truly see the nature of those hardships. We need to see through the tears, push through the sobs, banish the fears and accept the mistakes we’ve all made. A significant part of every loss for us is regret. With Jesus Christ our regrets can be overcome, ministered to and learned from. We can take the time we have remaining and make some part of this world a better place.


Will ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 29th, 2014 | Category: belief, Christ Follower, Jesus Follower | Comments

I’ve been a good person all of my life, but in no way has any of that behavior guaranteed me anything in this life or after this life. Being a good person is simply a choice that some of us make, an earthly choice, to treat others as we’d hope to be treated in return. A sort of softly selfish, quid pro quo. Not even that outcome is probable though. Jesus was a good guy too, actually, a good Jewish… read more

Self Promotion ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 26th, 2014 | Category: Humble, Inspirational, Jesus Follower, Meek, Praise | Comments

Self-promotion is an essential skill set in this world, but in the world which our God created, it’s an unwanted, unnecessary and unwelcome distraction. Taking any sort of credit for that which God has enabled (regardless of how He has done that) will one day come back to bite us. “Moses and Aaron told the people to meet together in front of the rock. Then Moses said, “You people are always complaining. Now listen to me. I will cause water… read more

Slice of Life ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 16th, 2014 | Category: belief, Eternity | Comments (1)

What would be the point of (anyone) telling us there is an eternity or eternal life, if in fact it was an untrue statement? It goes against every natural instinct we have, it invites ridicule. What is there to be gained by telling such a lie? It’s not as though someone or something (like the church) takes control of us, takes our possessions against our will, ushers us into some other behavior that they might dramatically profit from. There really… read more

NEED To Win ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 15th, 2014 | Category: belief, Christ Follower | Comments

It sounds trite to say that life is a game. The triteness comes from the fact that it’s not a game at all when it’s a life or death situation. Given that outcome, it must present as a sterile naked reality. What if it wasn’t a life or death ultimatum? What if it’s  a how we live or play our life game (for eternity) choice? Then this game doesn’t necessarily begin with birth and end with death, that’s just the first… read more

The Devil is For Real ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 14th, 2014 | Category: belief, Deception, Jesus Follower, Truth | Comments

We were given something tangible, to help us believe in something else, something bigger and much more important. It’s kind of like a baseball glove. By itself that baseball glove can do absolutely nothing but gather dust. However if that very same glove is placed on the hand, there-in activated, it can help us do things that we believe we might not be able to do or at least not as well without that glove. In essence the glove provides… read more

To Each His Own ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 10th, 2014 | Category: Christ Follower, Disappointment, Inspirational, Promises, Prophecy, Truth | Comments (2)

To each his own. How we live our lives is the basis for the outcome of our lives. We do not control each and every aspect of our lives because we do not live alone in this world. We can not control others. We live with others, so we must often share the burdens that they create and deliver. The sharing of both burdens and blessings, is the charge of this life, which leads each of us to one gate… read more

Long Life ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 6th, 2014 | Category: Promises, Truth | Comments

We were all little children and most have also been or will become very mature children, this commanding verse carries a lot of weight over a lot of years, but how many of us have even read it? This command looks down each family tree of genealogy but another following verse looks even further up that very same tree. “The command says, “You must respect your father and mother.” This is the first command that has a promise with it…. read more

Stand Together ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 4th, 2014 | Category: Conflict, Disappointment, Inspirational, Truth, Understanding | Comments

It would seem that I have raised some questions, when I wrote about a married couple, who are children of God, or perhaps even a singular “child” of God. A couple who have become “one” and who have mixed emotions and a lack of singular clarity and conviction in their prayers. It starts with these verses and vows. “That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife. In this way two people become… read more

100% ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 3rd, 2014 | Category: belief, Inspirational, Jesus Follower | Comments

For (100%) believers, there is still an obstacle of doubt which we must climb past to gain a full perspective of and total access to, our Lord. It begins with what do we believe? In a creator? YES! In a Redeemer and Savior named Jesus Christ? YES! That our Redeemer is the Son of God? YES! That the Son of God, gave up His place in heaven, came here to live among us? YES! That Jesus died on the Cross… read more