Tuesday, May 20, 2008

A Trip to Florida and an Ellen White Quote

I got back yesterday afternoon from a weekend trip to Florida. I spoke three times on Sabbath at Advent HOPE Florida, which is a Sabbath School group that meets at the Forest Lake Church. I had a great - but tiring - time speaking about the Song of Solomon and meeting wonderful people who have a similar passion for the Lord. It is always nice to meet other young adults who have a burden for sharing the three angels' messages.

As an added bonus, I got to spend some time with my sister, brother-in-law, niece, and a few aunts and uncles - who all live in the Orlando area. It was my niece's first birthday on Sabbath as well, and it was great to be there for her big day. On Friday afternoon, we went swimming at my brother-in-law's parent's house. The picture to the right is of Calleigh and me enjoying the water. (The one below is Calleigh's reaction to her birthday cake. For some reason, she starts going berserk when she sees birthday cake. We're not sure if it's the cake itself, or the candle, or the fact that everyone is focused on her. Imagine a child that refuses to eat cake, though!! Perhaps we should have given her a broccoli cake instead.)

My brother-in-law, Duncan, and I also saw Ben Stein's controversial movie, Expelled, which was fairly enlightening and interesting. I'd like to share my in-depth thoughts on that at some point in the near future, so stay tuned for that!

Perhaps the only bad thing of the weekend is that my luggage didn't arrive with me from Orlando. You would think that with a direct flight, it would be fairly easy to get my bags to Manchester, but, alas, it was left in Orlando. At least they didn't lose it the other way around: it's always a lot easier to cope without your luggage when you are home than when you are on the road.

Finally, I wanted to share a wonderful Ellen White quote that I came across this morning. As always, she is right on. Her thoughts on a grateful and appreciative heart are a very appropriate reminder to what I consider the most important - yet neglected - element of the Christian experience:
Gratitude should fill our hearts as we think of what God through Christ has done for us. The thought of the infinite gift made to us should refine and ennoble us. As we think of the love and goodness of God, we should banish selfishness from our hearts, asking the Lord to make us kind and compassionate. Has not God a right to our affections? Do not our powers belong to Him? What more could He have done for man than He has done? In one great gift He poured out for us all the treasures of heaven. Why then do we not talk of His love and tell of His power. (1888 Materials, p. 569)


Marty said...

HI, thanks for the update. I just wanted to let you know I was reading. I'm a pastor in Massachusetts, who found your blog while looking for "New England pastors who blog" on Google. Keep it up!

The mom, the robot, and the dancer said...

Looking forward to reading your post on Expelled. I really enjoy your writing and the topics you generate here. Keep it up, not enough of this out there!

Anonymous said...

Deacon & Usher


Shawn Brace said...

Hi Marty,

Thanks for checking in. Glad that you stumbled across my blog. Hopefully you'll find some interesting and edifying stuff on here.

And "the Mom," thank you also for reading my blog. I'm always intrigued by who finds it, and how they come across it. It really piques my curiousity!! Glad that you enjoy what I write about. Hopefully it is edifying to, at least, a few people!

I will, hopefully, write about Expelled sometime in the next few days, but I can't make any promises!!

Joelle said...

Wow, Calleigh's already a year old? Amazing how fast time flies. Too funny about the birthday cake. One would think that would be a reaction for someone, say, 50 or 60times her age.
That's neat you visited Advent HOPE Florida. Norman and I are leaders at the "original" Advent HOPE in CA.

Shawn Brace said...

Hi Joelle,

It is hard to believe that Calleigh is a year old. She is growing up too fast!!!