Posted by: David Buckner | March 18, 2015

React or Respond???

I get to help plan & manage some large events.

Hundreds of hours.

Thousands of people.

Millions of details.

Within that, I try to delegate as much as responsibly possible.

In doing so, I’m willingly giving control of an outcome to someone else (which has been a GREAT way of understanding that there really are multiple outstanding ways of accomplishing a goal…even if it may not happen the way I would do it).

In talking to individuals, as well as groups, who I’ve given leadership responsibilities, I always say something like this…

“At some point, especially during the week of the event, things are going to get crazy.  As leaders, we have a choice to make in those moments.  Will we REACT … or will we RESPOND?

“REACTIONS typically come out of a lack of preparation and functioning from a sense of EMERGENCY, as well as the feelings accompanied by a loss of control.  We get flustered, stressed and unproductive when this happens.  Even worse, it is infectious and could very well cause everyone around us to mirror those same things.  As leaders, we must avoid this at all costs.

“RESPONSES typically come out of proper preparation and functioning from a sense of URGENCY.  We may not have control within certain moments, but we must remain in control of ourselves.  When this happens, we’re able to RESPOND instead of REACT.

Working from a sense of EMERGENCY will inevitably lead to undesired REACTIONS.

Working from a sense of URGENCY will inevitably lead to more desirable RESPONSES.

In January, I read a devotion in a small devotion book (“Jesus Calling”) that had the following statement in it…

“I am much less interested in right circumstances than in right responses to whatever comes your way.”

And that sort of sums it up.

It isn’t about keeping our circumstances neat & tidy.

It isn’t about being/staying in control of everything around us.

It IS about my heart.

How I choose to deal with a situation is a direct reflection of the direction of my mind, heart & spirit.

May I be so in tune with HIM that no matter what happens, I RESPOND in a way that honors Jesus.

Period.

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart
    be pleasing in your sight,
    Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

Psalm 19:14

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Colossians 3:17

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Posted by: David Buckner | March 16, 2015

Party Time???

My son (Micah – 5-years old) has recently decided that his stuffed animals have birthdays too.  So last night was the first of many mini-pre-bedtime-birthday-celebrations.  Good times.  🙂

BUT – Mandi had been part of the staff for a local women’s retreat from Friday evening till’ Sunday afternoon.  When she got home in the late afternoon …

  • 4pm:  She was pumped and full of energy and stories from the weekend.
  • 5:45:  We took the dog for a walk.  She was still floating with energy.
  • 6:15:  I leave for a meeting.  She goes to pick up the kiddos from the grandparents.
  • 8:30:  I get home with much anticipation regarding the stuffed-animal-birthday-party!!!

I go upstairs to our bedroom where I hear the party happening and find this …Sleeping Through %22Mammoth's Party

Poor thing was exhausted!  And the kiddos were just having a party for a stuffed mammoth at the foot of our bed.

Beyond precious!!!

Posted by: David Buckner | March 14, 2015

The Power of a Moment

What are some moments I don’t want to miss:

  • Time with my wife and kids.
  • Time reading God’s word.
  • Time spent being healthy.
  • Experiencing GRACE.
  • Understanding humility.
  • Further developing the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5)
  • Walking the dog.
  • Father/Daughter dates.
  • Wrestle-time with my son.
  • Laughing hard.
  • Helping another achieve a goal.
  • Random songs at the dinner table.
  • Joy telling jokes she’s made up.
  • Deep snow.
  • Daisy’s.
  • Guy’s night out (time alone with my son).
  • Holding hands while going to sleep.

As I type, I realize this list will be endless.

There’s so much I don’t want to miss.

My reason for even thinking about it is a quiet house with no one else around (RARE).

As much as I need a deep breath, it’s amazing how quickly I realize how much a part of me is missing.

Tired or not.

Frustrated or not.

Happy & content … or not.

I don’t want to miss a moment.

And moments are what it’s all about.

Posted by: David Buckner | March 3, 2015

CHOICES

Choices

“Every choice has a consequence.”

How many times have I said that to my kiddos?

How many times have I learned that lesson the hard way?

How many times will that truth stare me in the face?

“KNOWING” is different than “DOING”.

“DOING” is different than “BEING”.

“BEING” … THAT seems to be the root which will ultimately produce the fruit.

BIBLE TIME

“There is a way that appears to be right,
    but in the end it leads to death.”

Proverbs 14:12 (NIV)

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

Posted by: David Buckner | March 2, 2015

PEACE – A Look @ Psalm 91:1-2

I’ve been allowed the privilege (assignment) of hanging out in Psalm 91 for the year.  Sometimes it helps me to break it down with synonyms/thoughts about many of the words/phrases.  Here are a couple for verses 1 & 2.

Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.”

Verse 1:

  • Whoever = Me, you, him, her & yes … even the one who we think shouldn’t be allowed.
  • Dwells = Abide. Wait. Remain. Hang out. Follow.
  • In = Not “beside”, “around”, “close”, etc…  “IN“.  This is a rich preposition with much to be discovered.
  • Shelter = Protection. Peace.
  • Most High = God Himself. THE Lord.
  • Rest = Disengagement from stressors. Effortless acceptance. Again…PEACE.

 Verse 2:

  • “I will say” = Heart response within His presence/protection.
  • Refuge = Safe place. Protection. Peace.
  • Fortress = Strong. Withstanding attacks. Provision.
  • My GOD = The One in charge. Powerful yet personal.
  • Trust = Obedience. Peace. Safe. Confidence.

I could do this for EVERY word.  Because, after reading it so many times over the last couple of months, I realize that EVERY word has significance.  But I’m limiting it to the words that seem to jump out in this moment.

In THIS moment, it seems that many of these words are pointing me to PEACE.

I’m thankful for that.

PEACE is something that I suppose I need more than I may realize.

PEACE is a gift I don’t embrace often enough.

PEACE goes against the grain of our culture.

PEACE presumes contentment … I struggle with that at the moment.

So I guess the question must be considered … Am I choosing to “DWELL in the shelter of the Most High”? Knowing that this is a path to & a place of PEACE?

God – help me find the PEACE you offer.  the PEACE found with-IN Your shadow … Your shelter … Your refuge … Your fortress.

Posted by: David Buckner | February 21, 2015

“Bye Bye Self”

The title is a quote from Micah (5-years old).

He was in a bathroom that had mirrors positioned where you could see yourself an infinite number of times.  Sort of like this…

InfiniteReflection2

As we left, he simply said, “Bye, bye self.”

Pause.

Wow.

Truth.

That statement made me think about how I need to say that very thing…

Out loud…

ALL the time!

I … am my own biggest hurdle to holiness.

I … am the reason for so much confusion and pain.

I … need grace.

I … need to die to SELF (again).

“Bye-Bye Self” (again).

A couple of verses to help me along the way (again):

  • Galatians 2:20 (NASB) … I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
  • Ephesians 4:22-24 (NASB) … in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.
  • Romans 12:1-2 (NASB) … Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. 
Posted by: David Buckner | February 15, 2015

THE EYE OF THE BEHOLDER

Everyone sees beauty in a different way.

As for physical beauty, here’s one of the many things the Bible has to say …

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes.  Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”  1 Peter 3:3-4 (NIV)
Beauty starts inside the heart.  We all know people who simply SHINE with beauty.  It is always my hope that someday this type of beauty is found within myself.  But, I don’t want to derail on some soapbox about our fascination with outward appearances verses inward beauty.  My simple goal is to remind myself of the things I find beautiful.  Here are some…

Mandi (and our new niece).

She (Mandi) is easily the most beautiful person I’ve ever known.

Mandi Holding Rosalee

Joy experiencing JOY at our Father/Daughter “Enchanted Evening”

Joy is developing the heart of her mom.  It is beautiful to watch and an honor to experience first hand.  TRUE beauty!!!

IMG_5030

Micah sleeping last night.

Nor sure what it is about the beauty within the peace of a sleeping kid.  My son, sleeping or not, is beautiful.

Micah Sleeping

The sunrise this morning & a sunset in December at our family farm in Hart County, KY

There’s something special about the sunrise & sunset.  Maybe it’s the expectation of what is to come.  Maybe it’s the celebration of the day that just happened.  Either way I’m always in awe at the absolute beauty of God’s creative handiwork.

Sunrise at 915

Hart County Sunset

I could keep going with this for awhile …

  • A perfect jump shot.
  • A dog playing.
  • Watching an eagle soar.
  • Basking in the majesty of a mountain.
  • Dinner with extended family over the holidays.
  • A daisy.
  • etc… etc… etc…

But that’s enough for now.  Maybe this is something I’ll make a habit of doing.  Maybe this is something we should all do more often.  Simply taking the time to appreciate the truly beautiful things around us.  Not just blindly believing what our culture tells us is beautiful.

If you have a minute, read Psalm 104 (ESV) below.  Then look around.  Try to take a second to really notice how God has blessed us with true beauty.

Lord My God, You Are Very Great

104 Bless the Lord, O my soul!
    Lord my God, you are very great!
You are clothed with splendor and majesty,
    covering yourself with light as with a garment,
    stretching out the heavens like a tent.
He lays the beams of his chambers on the waters;
he makes the clouds his chariot;
    he rides on the wings of the wind;
he makes his messengers winds,
    his ministers a flaming fire.

He set the earth on its foundations,
    so that it should never be moved.
You covered it with the deep as with a garment;
    the waters stood above the mountains.
At your rebuke they fled;
    at the sound of your thunder they took to flight.
The mountains rose, the valleys sank down
    to the place that you appointed for them.
You set a boundary that they may not pass,
    so that they might not again cover the earth.

10 You make springs gush forth in the valleys;
    they flow between the hills;
11 they give drink to every beast of the field;
    the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
12 Beside them the birds of the heavens dwell;
    they sing among the branches.
13 From your lofty abode you water the mountains;
    the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work.

14 You cause the grass to grow for the livestock
    and plants for man to cultivate,
that he may bring forth food from the earth
15     and wine to gladden the heart of man,
oil to make his face shine
    and bread to strengthen man’s heart.

16 The trees of the Lord are watered abundantly,
    the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
17 In them the birds build their nests;
    the stork has her home in the fir trees.
18 The high mountains are for the wild goats;
    the rocks are a refuge for the rock badgers.

19 He made the moon to mark the seasons;
    the sun knows its time for setting.
20 You make darkness, and it is night,
    when all the beasts of the forest creep about.
21 The young lions roar for their prey,
    seeking their food from God.
22 When the sun rises, they steal away
    and lie down in their dens.
23 Man goes out to his work
    and to his labor until the evening.

24 Lord, how manifold are your works!
    In wisdom have you made them all;
    the earth is full of your creatures.
25 Here is the sea, great and wide,
    which teems with creatures innumerable,
    living things both small and great.
26 There go the ships,
    and Leviathan, which you formed to play in it.

27 These all look to you,
    to give them their food in due season.
28 When you give it to them, they gather it up;
    when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
29 When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
    when you take away their breath, they die
    and return to their dust.
30 When you send forth your Spirit, they are created,
    and you renew the face of the ground.

31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
    may the Lord rejoice in his works,
32 who looks on the earth and it trembles,
    who touches the mountains and they smoke!
33 I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
    I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
    for I rejoice in the Lord.
35 Let sinners be consumed from the earth,
    and let the wicked be no more!
Bless the Lord, O my soul!
Praise the Lord!

Posted by: David Buckner | February 15, 2015

“TRUE LOVE” … Cliche or Life-Changing?

 

 

 

 

If being a teenager in the 80’s had ANY perk at all, it was to know & understand that Wesley & Buttercup were the mark we all hoped to achieve when it came to a relationship.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, please enjoy this 45-second tutorial on “true love” …

 

It still gets me.

I can’t help but wonder if the author of the book the movie is based on knew how close to the real Truth he was.

“Death cannot stop true love.”  (found at 26 seconds in the clip above)

 

Jesus said …

“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” … John 15:13 (NIV)

Most read this and think about who they’d be willing to die for.

I’ve come to a place where I read it and think about who I’m willing to LIVE for.

Laying down my life in death is a one-time choice.

Laying down my life by living for another is an everyday choice.

Maybe … just MAYBETHAT is what “TRUE love” is all about.

And THAT  kind of love is life-changing.

(((By the way … I’m glad Jesus did (does) BOTH!!!)))

Posted by: David Buckner | February 13, 2015

MOMENTS

I’ve heard it said that …

“The greatest gift you can give someone is your time.  Because when you dedicate your time, you are offering a part of your life that you will never get back.” 

Moments have power.

Especially face-to-face moments.

Too often, it seems that this power is consumed by a screen rather than the face(s) right next to us.

I’m not trying to jump up on a soap box and throw judgment around.  I’ve had my fair share of distraction-by-a-screen moments.  But what I’m afraid of is something like this…

Quality Time???

While hyperbole can sometimes border on satire, this picture sums up what seems to be slowly becoming normal & accepted.

Call me old-fashioned.

Call me cynical.

Call me a dreamer.

My hope is that I remember…

  • The moments of realizing the power of eye contact.
  • The moments of comfort from a simple touch on the shoulder.
  • The memories of moments playing games with my family without a phone in arms reach.
  • Moments of actually talking while eating with family … and the tv turned off.
  • etc… etc… etc…

Moments have so much power.

May I learn to cherish every moment.

Here’s to a hope & prayer that I’m present within the presence of another.

I’ve always encouraged people to …

“BE where you ARE.”

May we all choose to be connected to one another without a screen as much as possible.

I’m thankful for technology that allows us to see/talk/connect with people anywhere/anytime.

BUT … I guess my prayer is that I am able to have screens while not letting them have me.

Screens are incredibly valuable tools.

But that’s it.

Tools.

I’m not going to bring my saw on a date with my wife.

I doubt I’ll need a hammer while playing with my kids.

I will most likely not utilize a ladder the next time I’m in your presence.

BUT … how often will I check the screen of my #1 tool (phone) when I’m in a face-to-face moment with someone???

(Maybe I’m the “tool”.)

Moments have power.

May I use the power within a moment to bring connection to those God has presented  me with their presence.

Posted by: David Buckner | February 10, 2015

A New Beginning

After almost 5 years, I’ve remembered my login information for this site!!! Much has changed.
Micah is 5.
Joy is 7 (and a half).
Mandi & I have a little more grey up top.
We live in a new house.
Both kids are in school.
Kodak is a little slower & sassier.
And, well, life has been an adventure.
Sometimes good.
Sometimes not.
Sometimes great.
Sometimes not.
Whether good or bad, we strive to remain open, moldable, humble & always attentive to HIS guidance.

Can’t wait to share some highlights, updates and lessons.

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