Press Clippings

A ‘press clipping’ is:

–a paragraph or a short article cut out of a magazine or a newspaper.

Our life is made of press clippings. Well, not ‘literally’, unless you’re a celebrity or something. Poor things! One moment after another literally published online or in print. Thankfully, for the majority of us, our non-literal press clippings entail our moment-to-moment plays in life. One deed or thought after another. Negative or positive. Inward or outward focused. Upward or downward…

All those clippings make up our lives, and we’re the one’s who put them there. My pastor gave a message on this last Sunday, actually. The focus was a little different, but somewhat the same as this blog’s purpose. The title is “Write Your Own Epitaph”. Brilliant. You know, you actually can. Starting now. Here’s the link, just in case you want it:

http://eastsidechurch.co/category/listen

I guess we want to sometimes remember the things we did right or the things we succeeded in. And how it affects others and how what ‘we’ did actually meant something; and therefore, clip those proverbial little pieces of paper for safe keeping and reminiscing in our hearts and minds. Nothing wrong with that! It’s great to have little non-literal trinkets and reminders to remember things by and think about in the future. Sometimes they help us get through valleys when it seems that nothing is going the way we think it should or ALL THE CRAP is hitting the fan. There are those seasons where we all feel like all we’re doing is cleaning brown spots off the walls.

This isn’t going to be a long post, because it’s just not. It doesn’t really need to be! It could be a simple social media post, actually. But I wanted to dive just a little deeper than that. It’s something that’s been on my heart lately, and have learned to share it when it just won’t go away!

So, back to press clippings. How about our own press clippings. Each of our lives has incredible moments. We’re gonna talk about the shining moments right now, not the not-so-shiny. They all look very different, as they should. But we all have those mountain-top moments with awe-inspiring views.

Gosh, those views. It’s so beautiful to see something we have actually done right and it’s making a difference. Stuff like, for a short list of examples, but not limited to:

  • giving a homeless human a nibble or cash
  • having the right word at the right moment for a friend
  • posting something on social media and hitting the ‘nail on the head’
  • giving a unique gift to someone and it’s just right
  • having a prophetic word and it resonates
  • being the ‘perfect’ spouse for your mate in a particular moment
  • being the ‘perfect’ parent in a particular moment; a moment that’ll shape a life
  • knowing that how your volunteer your time/effort helps others in distinct ways
  • visiting a friend or family member and it was just the right time
  • blessing others with your unique talents and abilities
  • promoting and supporting others (friends/family) in their businesses
  • providing ways of (friends/family) to make money, being that connection point
  • leading another soul to Jesus Christ to spend their eternity with Him

ETC, Etc. etc.

The above list will never end! And I hope it doesn’t. Because it means you and I don’t stop being the “hands and feet of Jesus” and your life is a flowing river and not a stagnant reservoir. It means you and I are blessings to those around us, and that’s exactly what we’re called to be. One of the many things.

So what does press clippings have to do with this? Well, they are something you clip out purposefully to go back and read to remember.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with remembering a moment, a time or person you impacted. God does use this. He uses this to encourage us to keep going.

Sometimes, though–the opposite happens. We get parked on the parking space of “that” clipping and we keep reveling in it. We keep re-living it and re-playing it in our minds. We keep getting the renewed butterfly-sensation in our stomachs as we see in our mind’s eye what happened here. If we’re parked with our “motors” shut off in the spot of whatever our “gorgeous” view is, it’s merely impossible to keep moving forward. Unless we put it back in drive and keep trucking down the road. Casting all glory to God as we race along. Don’t look back in the rear view mirror unless you know God is asking you to recall that glorious moment that you did something right. Keep driving. Another moment is about to happen, and you may miss it if you’re looking back.

Stay humble. It’s so easy to get puffed up and bloated–and “bloated” is the proper word here. I know it sounds “augh!”, so that’s a GOOD thing in this instance. Do not be bloated!{or puffed up!} Deflate yourself. (Before someone or something deflates you for you. Not fun.) I’m not talking about deflating yourself to the point of scraping around the floor with false-humility, either. That’s for another post. 😉 False humility is just as dangerous as haughty pride.

But, as I could never say it better than straight from the Word of God, here’s a few great examples straight from Scripture:

Philippians 2:3-4 “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interest, but also to the interest of others.”

Proverbs 11:2 “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.”

Micah 6:8 “He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but do to justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?”

Proverbs 29:23 “One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.”

So these darn press clippings. What to do with them? What to do with the stuff we actually did right? Well, if one means a great deal to you: clip it. Store it. And every time you look at it, PRAISE GOD for it going right. It only means His Spirit was there guiding you for that very thing which you’re “reading” to go in the positive direction. Without God, it would never have pointed North. He is love and kindness, and everything that is love and kindness is most LITERALLY from Him.

But dear friends, guard yourself in reading and looking and tarrying over those clippings of your’s. Yes, you did it right. You made a difference. With God’s guidance and His love in your hearts. Don’t park there, though. Because if you do, you won’t get to your next destination of where God wants to take you.

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