Reason for the Season?

Reason for the season

Reason for the Season?

Someone will post it on Facebook…

It will grace the bumper of the car in front of you…

It will float out there like a righteous hot air balloon amid some serious Christmas conversation…

With the casualness of saying “How’s it going?”, it will be reeled off the tongue of a sincere friend…

You may even be accosted with it by some non-commercialized zealots intent on keeping Christmas “pure”…

With big letters, some store owners will paint it on their storefronts…

Maybe I’m the first one to bring it to your attention this Christmas season…

You are going to come face to face with it sooner or later, so here we go…

“Jesus is the Reason for the Season!”

There…
I said it…
You just read it…
Whew…
Glad that’s over with…

My iWitness…

I get it.
I understand.
I even put it on the top of this blog post!
I know what “they” are driving at when they proclaim it and declare it.
I see the desire to “rail against the commercialized Christmas machine.”

Yes…

The focus of the Christmas season needs to center on the newborn savior.
However…

Jesus is not the reason for the season.

Yes, you read that right.

Let me repeat myself…

Jesus is not the reason for the season.

If Jesus is not the reason for the season, then who or what is the reason for the season?

Do you want to know the answer?
Of course you do!

YOU are the reason for the season!!

Listen carefully as you read the most quoted verse in all of scripture…

 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.” (John 3. 16-17)

God loved who? The world!
Who is the world? YOU
God gave His son. So that whoever believes…
Who is whoever? YOU
God sent His son not to condemn, but to save.
Save who? YOU
God sent His son into the world so that whoever believes in him will have eternal life.
Who gets eternal life? YOU

Get it?
Got it?
Good!

YOU are the reason for the season! And don’t let anyone tell you different…

And that’s my iWitness…
Laugh often and Fear not!
David!

ps – This is a chapter out of my “iWitness December” daily devotional book. Available on Amazon in paperback or Kindle format.

David@seeinggodatworkeveryday.com

The Hands of Grace

hands-of-grace

I received the following letter earlier this week from an old High School friend from Orange, California
________________________________________

November 29, 2016

The Reverend David W. Dendy
8601 Del Webb Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89134

Dear David,

I don’t know if you remember me or not but this is YdNed DiVad. You used to call me Yid the Kid. That nickname has carried with me all my life. Thanks David!

I moved to Orange from the old country in 5th grade and we had Mr. Smith together along with Doug Fields and Felicia Beatty. Do you remember them?

Anyway, for some odd reason you came to my mind the other day and I set out on a search to find you. There you were on Facebook. I googled you and there you were again. A pastor? Really? You? You were always a nice guy and I can see you as a pastor. The pastor at my church is kind of crazy, so I can see where you might fit that mold. LOL!

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Forgiveness Kills…

Forgive

Dictionary definition of the word Forgive.

No subject invites more push back, more dissension and more consternation than that of the topic of “Forgiveness.”

SeeingGodatWorkEveryDay…

Everyone seems to be offended these days.
College students are offended that they have to pay for college. Hourly wage earners are offended they are not making $15 an hour. Democrats are offended by Republicans and vice versa. Protesters are offended by the opposition’s second amendment right to offer an opposing view. School districts are offended by students wearing T-Shirts that say God Bless America. And coffee drinkers the nationwide are offended by plain red Starbucks Coffee Cups. Just to be clear… It is not Starbucks responsibility to wish people a Merry Christmas. The responsibility is ours! People are offended because the pastor wears a robe. People are offended because the Pastor wears his shirts tucked out.

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Flying the W

cubs-w-flag

Finally!

The Chicago Cubs can “Fly the W” as the winner of the 2016 World Series!

Congratulations as the longest drought in championship history is now over.

Last night, during the epic Cubs-Indians game 7, there was much discussion from all the broadcasters on one subject and one subject alone: Managing

Should Joe Maddon, manager of the Chicago Cubs have used a certain pitcher in the previous game?
Who should Terry Francona, manager of the Cleveland Indians substitute for certain players?
Will Maddon put in this pitcher or that pitcher in the next inning?
Will Francona pitch to this batter or intentionally walk that batter?

The second guessing, the analysis, the evaluation and the judgment of the managers last night by the broadcasters was endless.

Endless of course until the Cubs secured the victory and were able to “Fly the W!” (A tradition when the Cubs win a game is to fly a flag with the letter W on it)

Interesting how the Owners of each respective team was rarely, if ever mentioned.

Honestly, I cannot even tell you who the owners are of each team.

The focus of the conversation was on the Managers.

This Sunday, November 6th, is Stewardship Sunday at MVPC where we, as a congregation will have the honor, privilege, joy and blessing of offering to God our 2017 financial commitment card as an act of worship.

God, the owner of this world and all of creation and Lord of our lives and hearts has entrusted all these aforementioned items into our care as “Managers.”

We are not the owners!
We are the managers!

God has provided us with all the necessities of life as the owner.
How will we be “stewards”? In other words, how will we be managers of said resources?

Do we manage life or does life manage us?
Do we manage our finances or do our finances manage us?
Do we manage God or does God manage us?

Here is what I have learned over the years about being a “Steward” (Manager) of God’s resources…

  1. It is better to give than receive (very scriptural – Acts 20: 35)
  2. Giving back to God 10% of my income (tithing) has been the best managerial decision of my life. (Gen. 14: 19-20 / Gen. 28: 20-22 / Malachi 3: 10-12 / Hebrews 7: 1-2)
  3. God can do more with my 90% than I can do with my 100%. (See number 2) When I keep all the money to myself, I always seem to run out. When I give away 10% God always stretches my 90% in to more than enough.
  4. Malachi 3:10 – Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.” It is the only place in all of scripture where God says, “Test me…” Let me encourage you to put God to the test and give 10% and watch the blessings pour down!
  5. “Give until it hurts” – We have all heard this line before. Here is the truth I have experienced – The only time I hurt is when I don’t give. I have never hurt by giving of my resources, my time, my talents and my energies.
  6. Giving is a great way to be “God-like.” John 3: 16 – For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life.

I could go on and on…

Let me encourage you to pray and after praying, be bold.
As our Stewardship Theme has been this fall, let us be “Fearlessly Generous” in our commitment to God and watch God pour out blessings which will simply and profoundly take our breath away…

As a church, as a community of faith, as a body of believers let’s do one thing this Sunday

FLY THE W!!

Grace and peace,
Laugh often and Fear not!
David!

David@seeinggodatworkeveryday.com

Two are better than one…

ecc-4

The last Thursday of the month of October…
Hard to believe two Thursdays from now we will have elected a new president…
Can you imagine taking a job where less than 50% of the people hiring you voted for you to get the job? Crazy!

Years ago I built a swing set.
I bought all the necessary hardware in a “kit” and then purchased the “lumber” to complete the project.

The directions on the kit suggested with “two” people working together the project could be completed in 2-4 hours.

Piece of cake!
I can do this all by myself!
I had set aside the whole Saturday for the project as the kids waited eagerly.

You know where this story is going don’t you…

After four hours I had the crossbeam attached to the hardware for the four legs…
That’s it!
The kids were no longer waiting.

The kids were no longer eager.
I was all alone in the abysmal abyss of my backyard with my “NSFW” (Not Safe For Work) thoughts…

As Three Dog Night sang so long ago and yet, whose words ring and rang so true,
“One is the loneliest number…”

Reluctantly and despairingly, I called my friend Steve Offutt for help.
He asked me, “What tools do you have?”
I laughed out loud!

Thirty minutes later Steve arrived with all of Home Depot in the back of his truck.

He assessed the situation.

Looked at the lumber and the kit, looked at me, looked at the lumber and the kit, looked at me and then a huge smile creased under his dark mustache as he removed his baseball cap scratching his bald head.
All I could muster was, “That bad?”

Steve chuckled and confidently said, “Let’s get started!”

I thought to myself, “Let’s get started? I started four and a half hours ago! How about “Let’s continue!!!”

Six hours later the project was completed.
If I ever meet the engineers who said it would only take 2-4 hours it will be an NSFW encounter! HA!

A special shout out to my friend Steve for helping me out!

Ecclesiastes states the obvious which is so often ignored…

Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! 11 Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? 12 And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken. (Ecclesiastes 4: 9-12)

Do you have difficulty asking for help?
Isn’t it easier just to do it by yourself?
Is it true, two are better than one?

Ecclesiastes has some wise words for you, for me, for our relationships, for our workplace, for our church.

Let’s come together this Sunday as the body of Christ, as the community of faith, as the fellowship of believers, as the Church!
Otherwise, Three Dog Night’s song will ring oh so true:
One is the loneliest number…

Grace and peace,
Laugh often and Fear not!
David!

 

Worrier to Warrior

worrier-warrior-2

Thursday’s Thoughts from Pastor David

This Thursday’s Thoughts has me very worried!!
I am worried no one will read it.
I am worried I will make grammatical errors.
I am worried I won’t get it done in time.
I am worried about how I look as I write.
I am worried about the safety of the Loch Ness Monster.
I am worried about the recent sighting of Big Foot.
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Faith or Fear

fear-or-faith

We are halfway through the month of September and that marker just so happens to land on a Thursday!

Which can only mean one thing: It’s time for Thursday’s Thoughts from Pastor David.

The church I am blessed to serve, Mountain View Presbyterian Church (MVPC) is on a 90 day trek through the Bible!

“The Bible in 90 Days” is our rallying cry as we encourage one another to pursue a deeper relationship with the Author of Life, the Lord God Almighty by reading His word, His entire word over the next 90 days!

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Labor of Love

labor-of-love

Hello September!!
We look forward to the beginning of fall this month as the ninth month of the year begins ushering in cooler temperatures bringing with them a crispness in the air…

This weekend is Labor Day Weekend!
Shouldn’t it be called “Rest Day Weekend” since we are supposed to take a “day off from laboring?”

My mind got to thinking about “labor” the other day and we will address the issue of “labor” this Sunday at church…

“What are we laboring for?”
“What are we laboring against?”
“What are we laboring to…?”

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28 Years of Being the Reverend

Dendy professional 2014
28 Years of Being the Reverend

Twenty-eight years ago on this day, August 28, 1988 in the presence of family and friends at the Reid Memorial Presbyterian Church in Augusta, Georgia, with the Reverend Dr. G. Daniel McCall preaching, I was ordained in the Presbyterian Church of the United States of America as a Minister of Word and Sacrament.

I have been known as the Reverend David W. Dendy for the last 28 years…

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The Valley and the Mountain Top

Valley

I love Thursdays!!
It’s that time again for Thursday’s Thoughts from Pastor David

I was serving a church in Augusta, Georgia (they have a nice little golf tournament there every year), and I went away for a week for a conference.
Upon my return, one of the wisest elderly ladies I have ever met, Mrs. Berry asked me how the conference went.

I went into detail the people I met, the objectives of the course, the joy of “getting away” and the overall satisfaction of a fulfilling conference.
I concluded my comments with Mrs. Berry with this statement.
“It was a mountain top experience…”

The pregnant pause, the smile on Mrs. Berry’s wrinkled face slowly stretching from ear to ear and the twinkle in her eighty plus year old eyes piercing my very heart brought my soul and mind to a quick stop.

The follow up was hearing her sweet southern accent drawl out this next statement which has stuck like tar to my heart for the last twenty-five years.
“David… just remember… nothing ever grows on the mountain top… Everything always and only grows in the valley…”

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