There is a time for everything in life, including our trials. Our days contain both the good and the bad. The only certainty about life is its uncertainty. In times of trouble, our natural tendency is to look for the closest exit. As soon as something rocks the boat, we grab our life preserver and look for a safety raft to float us away from troubles. This reaction is only amped up when we become parents. We don’t want to watch our children struggle, or even worse, fail. As a result, we are raising a generation that doesn’t deal with difficulty. Our actions are doing them a great disservice. As the primary spiritual influence in their life, we must model how difficulty plays a critical part in experiencing fullness. We can teach our children how every circumstance can be transformed into something beautiful and epic in God’s hands.
Two Pockets: Part 2
James, Joseph, Rocky Balboa and Two Pocket Parents
July 24, 2016 • Stuart Hall
Two Pockets: Part 1
The Paradox of Life • July 17, 2016 • Stuart Hall
In John 10, Jesus makes a bold promise that He came so that we may not only have life, but life to the fullest. Yet, many of us fail to experience this reality. A full life isn’t the words we would use to describe our days. This begs the question: why are we so far from where we are meant to be? Why is it so hard to live that full life? And, where is fullness found? The fullness we crave comes from being both strong and weak. It involves confronting our arrogance as well as those moments of self-condemnation. We spend so much of our energy agonizing over the ways we don’t measure up and fall short of everyone else’s standard. Most of us are trying to get God’s attention in ways that don’t even matter to Him. Focusing on who we are not is getting in the way of who God wants us to be.
Two Pockets: Part 3
Failing Forward • July 31, 2016 • Stuart Hall
Our entire lives can be controlled and destroyed by small little windows of time where we made a bad decision. When a mistake gets in our mind, instead of moving past it and forward, we stall and get the spiritual “yips.” Experiencing the full life Jesus promises is impossible when our backs are turned with our eyes fixated on our past. The weight of these mistakes slows down our pursuit of God by diverting our attention from the future. As hard as it is for us to hear, the truth is that the past is irreparable. Our wounds cannot be fixed, but they can be healed. The hope we can cling to is that the future is always available. There may be scars, mistakes and failures, but there is a story of victory where everything that was wrong has been made right. We must stop being so concerned about a past we have no control over and begin to focus on a future filled with hope in a passionate pursuit of God.
Two Pockets: Part 4
The Force Awakens • August 7, 2016 • Stuart Hall
The light and the dark. It’s the epic struggle we’ve seen depicted in our stories since the beginning of time. The hero of light struggles against the villain of darkness. We love these stories because they seem to reflect our world. They reflect our own desire that the light will win out over the darkness. But what if the tension between light and dark isn’t just a struggle happening out there? What if it’s one that’s going on in our own hearts? God says that it is. Even crazier He says that we have a role to play in the battle. We get to choose which side we’re going to sow into our lives. As we’re going to discover, Jesus is inviting us to sow the light, and our decision to do so just might make the difference between living life to the fullest and missing out on it. In order to live the full life, we must confront the dark side.