Window or Aisle

by DanWolgemuth on May 1, 2015

As I boarded a Southwest flight this week I trailed a boy who was boarding as an “unaccompanied minor.” That meant a flight attendant was thoughtfully escorting him on every step of his journey.

Once the young man was on the flight, the flight attendant waved her hand across the expanse of the empty airplane cabin and asked, “Window or aisle?” Before the question had landed on the fuselage floor the word “window” exploded from his lips.

Window!

Even as the single word answer exuberantly bounced off the walls of the airplane, I felt the impact in my soul… Window.

No windows for me, I’m an aisle guy… give me elbow room, no distractions, and a quick exit.

Window seats are for dreamers, for explorers, for children.

Dreams, and visions, and cosmic perspective have always been God’s theater stage. He ignites the kindling of hope with a glimpse beyond our comprehension.

I remember clamoring for a window seat. I remember being completely entranced by the view, the beauty, the perspective, the untamed perspective. But I’m an aisle guy now. No time, no space, no room… for windows.

Efficiency has squeezed out imagination. Productivity over dreaming.

God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us. Ephesians 3:20 

God invites us to the window seat. Enthralled. Captivated. Inspired. Unleashed.

In the classroom of a child.

Window or aisle?

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When all there is…

by DanWolgemuth on April 24, 2015

This past Tuesday I was invited to join a group of pastors and ministry leaders from Parker, Colorado. Teen suicide has hit the shores of this Denver suburb with tsunami-like impact. A day before the breakfast I was asked if I would be willing to share a few thoughts with these men and women.

As I prepared to speak for this gathering, I was drawn singularly to God’s Word. It was as if the Holy Spirit whispered in my ear, “Just read from God’s Word.” And so I did. From Lamentations, from Jeremiah and from the book of John.

Here is what I read to the hungry hearts in the room…

How lonely sits the city…

She weeps bitterly in the night;
With tears on her cheeks.

For these things I weep; my eyes flow with tears; for a comforter is far from me, one to revive my spirit; my children are desolate, for the enemy has prevailed.

My eyes are spent with weeping;
My stomach churns
.

What can I say for you, to what compare you?
What can I liken to you, that I may comfort you?
For your ruin is vast as the sea; who can heal you?

…my soul is bereft of peace; I have forgotten what happiness is; so I say, “My endurance has perished; so has my hope from the LORD.”

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.

But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.

I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.

And then three simple phrases came to me…

There is no balm like God’s Word.
There is no hope but Jesus.
There is no megaphone like unity.

God have mercy.

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He said, “Come.”

April 20, 2015

And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” (Matthew 14:28-29a) The advent of instructional videos has been transformational to home repair and improvement projects. I use them. I appreciate them. Actually, I love them. From my 15-year-old dryer, to my GE dishwasher, […]

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Two outs; bottom of the 9th, bases are loaded; the Cubs are behind by three runs

April 13, 2015

Spring is like a magnet that draws me back to the dreams of a child growing up in Wheaton, Illinois. In April the calendar flipped to baseball season, and with it, the heroic dreams of a child took flight. The Cubs were loaded with talent. They sported an infield that was the envy of the […]

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The Step of Faith

April 6, 2015

In a sobering and stunning act, Andreas Lubitz voluntarily snuffed out his own life, and simultaneously ended the lives of 150 others. The suffocating realities of a deeply troubled man collided with the disregard for the lives of innocent passengers. An unwritten agreement of trust is forged when a passenger steps across the threshold of […]

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Untie the Donkey

March 27, 2015

As Jesus and his disciples approached Jerusalem, they came to the towns of Bethphage and Bethany on the Mount of Olives. Jesus sent two of them on ahead. “Go into that village over there,” he told them. “As soon as you enter it, you will see a young donkey tied there that no one has ever ridden. Untie […]

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Over and Over Again

March 23, 2015

“Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying,” Jeremiah 1:4 With this, the book of Jeremiah begins. God, speaking to, and speaking through a reluctant but available mouthpiece. Over and over again these words are repeated in the prophetic narrative of Jeremiah. “The word of the Lord came to me…” Jeremiah was tuned in. Jeremiah was attentive. […]

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A Calendar Date with Destiny

March 13, 2015

Every few weeks Mary and I sit down with our calendars and have a time together that we affectionately call our “Calendar Date.” Mary’s technology of choice is a classic paper calendar that shows the entire month on two side by side pages. I’m far more high tech and prefer to fumble around on my […]

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A Putin Pay Cut

March 6, 2015

This just in… the Russian economy is slowly imploding, burdened with the weight of mounting expenses and declining oil revenues. With the realities of this economic crisis, Russian President Vladimir Putin has enacted a sweeping cut in government pay of 10%. The story also highlights the fact that Putin will include his own compensation in […]

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Only Rowan

February 27, 2015

We moved in, as they moved out. Our intersection was a small breezeway between two double doors. Mary and I were with Rowan, our 18-month-old grandson. The two individuals coming toward us were not with their grandson, but rather an enormous dog. We met in the middle. Spontaneous in its origin, the encounter was laced […]

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