HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER

“Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.” Ephesians 6:1-3

We honor our parents in many ways:

  1. As a child, by obeying and respecting.
  2. As a young person, by accepting and appreciating them.
  3. As an adult, by affirming and not abandoning them.

I think we preach 1 and 2, but we’ve done a poor job on number 3. We need to honor our parents when they get older and not abandon them. “Honor your father and mother” isn’t just for little children.

Walter Wangerin is one of the best storytellers ever. Walter tells of a time when he visited a friend Mel on a crisp autumn afternoon in Wisconsin. Mel spent much of his time reading and studying in his parlor, where he could be with his aging mother. As Walter entered his friend’s home, he was enveloped in the wonderful aroma of apple pie. “Oh, I see your mother is baking pies,” Walter said with a smile.

“No,” Mel answered. “I see to the necessary things now.” Looking around, Walter understood what he meant. There was a pool of light cast by Mel’s reading lamp, and just beyond it, in a bed, was Mel’s ailing mother. Walter had known her for years. Now she sat propped up, her face an empty slate. Mel made introductions as though they’d never met. As Walter reached forward and shook her hand, her watery blue eyes never gazed higher than his stomach. Walter sadly comprehended: A dear old friend that no longer knew him.

After sharing a walk and a slice of apple pie with his friend, Walter retired to bed. In the middle of the night he was awakened by a sound from the parlor. Someone seemed to be in great pain. There were awful, inarticulate screams coming from downstairs: “Yeeeahhhh! Naaaaaaah!” He rose quickly, wrapped a robe around himself, and hurried down to the parlor.

Mel wasn’t in his chair. With eyes adjusting to the darkness, Walter could see his friend Mel kneeling beside the bed of his mother. Mel motioned for Walter to be seated. As Walter did so, he became aware of an awful odor, and he knew what his dear friend was doing — he was changing his mother’s diaper. He was cleansing his mother with tenderness and grace. He was honoring her in the very spirit God prescribed for the honoring of parents.

And as he did so, he softly sang. He was singing lullabies to her in the language she knew as a child. And you know what she was doing? She was singing along: “Yeeeahhhh…. Naaaaah…..” And as she sang along with her son, I know she was young and beautiful once more. She was in no prison and under no slavery, neither of sin nor of body. She was, in her mind, a little girl again where all was new and all was good. And she was singing at the top of her lungs to her Father in heaven.”

So the question begs to be asked, “Have you honored your father and mother?” When they get old, will you remember them? When they have no hair or teeth; when they’ve lost their beauty and mostly smell; when they cannot control their tears, will you come? With tenderness, conviction and strength, will you sing the songs that your parents knew in their childhood? Will you sing for them so that they may be honorable again? Will you sing?

Sing for someone today.

VBS (Vacation Bible School)


VBS is all about kids and this week has been great. We’ve had about 285 each night. Tonight will be our biggest crowd. We won’t be competing with little league baseball and other community activities tonight. I love VBS because it’s one of the ways we reach kids. And I love the fact that the Childress church goes “all out” for it’s VBS and everything is done first class. I believe that if we want to SERIOUSLY impact the world we live in, we MUST do it through dynamic youth and children ministries. We must reach out to children. They must be a major focus and investment of our churches.
It’s been a very busy week. VBS week always is, but add in to the mix my brother Bruce, and his family, are here for two days from Juneau, Alaska. Bruce preaches for the church in beautiful Juneau. We haven’t got to see Bruce, Amanda and the kids in over a year, so we’ve spent a lot of time this week catching up, talking and laughing.

One of the coolest parts of the week was getting to spend a little time with blogging legend Neva, from Dancing in the Light blogspot, and her husband Ned (or Mrs. Neva as we call him). They came over and taught one of our Bible classes during our VBS. And they also got to eat at a famous restaurant, “The Deuce.” Okay, so maybe it isn’t famous, but it is the Morgan’s favorite restaurant.

See you tomorrow…

PS – I loved the comments to yesterday’s post “10 Signs Your Spending Too Much Time Blogging.” You guys make me laugh. So, anyone for starting a support group?

10 SIGNS YOU’RE SPENDING TOO MUCH TIME BLOGGING

  1. Your spouse carries a picture of the back of your head in their wallet because this is what they normally see.

  2. Sitemeter goes down and you have a panic attack.

  3. The first thing you do when visiting a new blog is to see if your blog is on their blogroll.

  4. Your spouse’s lawyer serves you with divorce papers by leaving a comment on your blog.

  5. One of your children walk up to you while you’re at your computer and you ask, “Now, which one are you?”

  6. Your mom finds out you’re having another child by reading your blog.

  7. You find yourself thinking, “That’s a great blog idea,” so you get out of bed in the middle of the night to write the idea down.

  8. You’re putting off going to bed with your beautiful wife so that you can think of number ten on your top ten list.

  9. You decide to take a sabbatical from your blog for a full day.

  10. You have more friends in the blogging world than in your real world.

HOW TO HANDLE CRITICISM

It doesn’t matter what your profession, criticism will be a part of it. It doesn’t matter where you are in life, there will always be criticism. Those with “high-profile” jobs can always expect double the criticism. Just like the football coach who if he runs the ball, everyone thinks he should have passed. If he passed everyone says, “The dummy should have ran the ball.”

Criticism is not just reserved for the world. The church is full of criticism too. It’s dished out in large quantities to the elder, the preacher, the bible class teacher, the song leader, the parent whose kids are too loud, the boy who doesn’t dress nice enough on Sunday morning, etc. So how do we handle criticism? How do we deal with it? Here are a few things to think about…

  1. Is the Criticizing done with Love? If someone comes to me with a bad, negative or condemning attitude, I just ignore it. The Bible does say, “Speak the truth…” but it says to do so “in love.” Feel free to come to me with anything, but do it unkind and unChristlike, and I won’t hear a word.
  2. Is The Criticism Personal or Shared By Others? The truth is we tend to focus on the negative and forget the positive. As ministers we can have 100 people tell us the sermon was great on Sunday and one person say we stink, and we focus on that one that was negative. We all do that. Or we fall for the line that I hate people using, “I’ve been talking to a lot of people and everyone is saying…” In most cases that’s not true. I once heard a person say, “There are a lot of us who don’t feel like he’s qualified to be a deacon.” I asked the man for names of those who felt the way he did. He back peddled and never brought it up again. He was simply giving his own personal opinion and adding some “others” to make it sound good. Don’t bring that garbage around here. That’s not Christlike.
  3. Is the Person Criticising a new Critic or a Regular? What I mean is if it’s the same guy complaining about everything all the time, then you can probably bet he needs to be ignored. Some people feel it’s their gift to complain and criticize. And when you find someone that does nothing but criticize … ignore the criticism and be sympathetic for the people that have to live with him.
  4. Does the Person Criticizing know Me Personally? One thing I’m learning is just because someone can send an email or write a letter, that does not make them an expert. I know people often act before they think and you have to understand that. But an unsigned angry letter or an email from someone you don’t even know, both deserve the trash can. In fact let me say this: If you write mean-spirited letters that you don’t have the courage to sign, that’s sinful. If you have a problem with a brother … go to him. But let me add, I am more than willing to listen to anyone close to me who comes with a kind, concerned spirit. I’m always willing to listen to concerns, and I’m more than willing to admit when I’ve done wrong, made a mistake or just plain screwed up. I do make mistakes on a regular basis, and I’m willing to listen to people and their opinion matters to me greatly. I do NOT know it all, and I’m constantly learning and growing.
  5. Is What They Are Saying based on Scripture or their Opinion? When someone comes at you with an “I think” but cannot back it up with any scripture … I don’t really take it to heart.
  6. Is it Something Worth the Time? The majority of criticism I get over my blog or other matters isn’t worth my time. I just don’t have time to argue. There are times to address issues that someone complains about, but not every time. Jesus gave us a great example of this when in the bible, there were many times that Jesus refused to even answer his critics.
  7. One last thing, Smother Your Critics with Kindness. I have found that when people come to me angry or with criticism about something, instead of returning their venom I try and smother them with kindness. I few years ago, I got an angry mean-spirited letter that was from a woman I’d only met once. I wasn’t sure how to respond or if I needed to respond. I called an older minister for advice and he told me, “There are only two good options. Either throw it away and forget it, or write her back and smother her with kindness.” He was so smart. I chose the second. One year later she wrote me a second letter apologizing for her first. Would you believe we’re friends now?

I know criticism hurts, especially unfounded criticism. Maybe the best advice comes from a Jewish carpenter who said, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.”

I-POD

My old mp3 player finally wore out so I’ve upgraded. I love my new I-Pod. I’ve just got through loading a ton of stuff on it.

Here are some songs you’ll find on my I-Pod.

  • “Awesome God” – Acappella Praise & Worship
  • “How deep the Father’s love for us” – Zoe
  • “You raised me up” – Selah
  • “My Redeemer lives” – Nicole C. Mulen
  • “We’re ready” – Boston
  • “Away from the sun” – 3 Doors Down
  • “Animal” – Def Leppard
  • “Even Flow” – Pearl Jam
  • “Home” – Daughtry
  • “If every one cared” – Nickelback
  • “100 Years” – 5 For Fighting

As you can tell I like a wide variety of music. You’ll never find me without some Classic Rock close by. As for worship music, Acapella’s Praise & Worship CD “Heaven is in My Heart” is fantastic.

As for movies on my I-Pod (it’s going to be a long bus ride to Mexico City next month):

  • A Night at the Museum
  • The Incredibles
  • 3 Episodes of Spongebob Squarepants (I’m hooked)

What you won’t ever find on my I-Pod:

  • Rap music
  • Country music
  • Stevie Ray Vaughan
  • Rolling Stones
  • Justin Timberlake

I also enjoy listening to sermons … here are some I regularly listen to:

I’m really loving this new I-Pod. So, what would you put on your I-Pod?

FAMILIES ARE AMAZINGLY DIFFERENT

God must have a sense of humor. Why else would He put polar opposites in families. Let me give you some examples on how families are often so different just from some past events in the Morgan family… Family Vacations – This summer we’re talking about where we want to go on vacation. Lea would […]

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"GEE, SHOULD I GO TO CHURCH TODAY?"

As I read through a few blogs this morning, I came across an interesting post titled, “Should I go to church today?” It provides an interesting perspective on reaching out to those outside the church. The part that caught my attention said …. “I don’t know any non-Christian who wakes up and thinks, “Gee, I […]

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A LIVING SACRIFICE

An oxymoron are two words that have been put together that contradict one another. Here are a few that make me laugh… Pretty Ugly Work Party Jumbo Shrimp A Little Pregnant Healthy Tan Dressy Flip-Flops Dodge Ram Plastic Glasses Tight Slacks Rap Music Here’s another oxymoron that probably got a laugh from Paul’s readers when […]

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INTERVIEWED

My friend Dee Andrews has interviewed me this week for your sleeping pleasure. I told her I’d be more than happy to put up a link to the interview today. Stop by if you want and you might learn a few things about me you didn’t know. Thanks Dee for your kindness. Read interview: Here […]

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THOUGHTS ON A BRAIN DEAD MONDAY

Usually I do a long “spiritual” post on Monday about something I’ve been thinking about … but today I’m brain dead! It was a long weekend, and I’m overdue for a vacation. Here are a few things running through my mind… I’m thinking about sex. Got your attention? I’m going to do some posts soon […]

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PICK YOUR LANE CAREFULLY

(This is part of last weeks sermon: Life is a Highway, Chose Your Lane Carefully) Last summer going through the metropolis of Dallas, Texas we had lots of choices on what road we’d take. If we picked the right lane, we could get exactly where we wanted to go, but if we chose the wrong […]

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LOOKING LIKE JESUS

I was in a Lubbock McDonald’s yesterday following a funeral. I had gone there to have coffee with my good friends and fellow bloggers Matt & Crystal James. While there, I also ran into blogger Kathy, who was in Lubbock visiting family. It was an amazing little blogging reunion. A crazy thing happened while standing […]

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7 WAYS TO RATE YOUR CHURCH

Christianity Today has a good article on seven ways to measure your church’s ministry. The article states that “that most people rate church atmosphere within the first 15 minutes of their first visit.” The below seven areas will most likely contribute to how people rate your church’s atmosphere on their first visit: Sensing the presence […]

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10 CRAZY THINGS I’VE SEEN WHILE PREACHING

I’ve preached a lot of sermons over the past 20 years. I’ve seen a lot of “crazy” things while preaching. Here are 10… People sleeping (of course). A child playing a Gameboy. A man on the front pew clipping his toe nails. My zipper unzipped. A man doubled-over in pain in the foyer at the […]

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OLD TESTAMENT CARD STORE

Bizarro is one of my favorite cartoonists. He’s got a warped sense of humor and an odd way of looking at life. I think those are the reasons I like him so much. As for the cartoon, I’m sure glad things have changed since then.

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WORTH READING

Here are a few things you might find interesting to read … No hymnals. No pews. No steeple. No stained glass windows. And no women. Here’s an interesting story about a church that reaches out to just men. Hmm. My long time friend, Jeff Foster, is now blogging on a regular basis. Jeff is the […]

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A CHILD IS NEVER TO YOUNG TO LEARN ABOUT GOD

A new tool called Baby Signs is helping babies learn to communicate with sign language before they can talk. The video below is a 13 month old little girl who is learning to read. Do not underestimate the learning potential of your baby or the babies in your children’s ministry at church. From this video […]

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TRUE GRACE and PURE RANDOMNESS

SUMMER TIME: It been a crazy week around here this week. The last week of school always is. The boys are pumped about being out for the summer. School doesn’t start back this year until the end of August, so they’ll get 3 months off for summer and we’ll need them. Here’s why … Summer […]

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CAREER DAY – What do Preachers Do?

I spent yesterday morning taking part in Childress Elementary’s Career Day. Wow, it was too much fun. I worried about how I could make my “career” as a minister sound interesting and keep the large group of 10 and 11 year-olds entertained. When the day ended I thought that each group that came through listened […]

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GOING TO CHURCH or BEING THE CHURCH

Want to see 10 of the most amazing church buildings in the world? I mean “jaw dropping” amazing? Click here But I can’t seem to get enough of this discussion: Is church supposed to be a place that you GO TO or BELONG TO, or is it more about BEING something or someone? We get […]

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A "BEAN COUNTING" MARRIAGE

At least once a day I look at the referrals on my stat-tracker to see where the traffic to my blog is coming from. Over 100 of my referrals every day are from Google where someone has searched, “How to keep my wife happy,” or “How to have a happy marriage.” I’m not sure why […]

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WORST CHURCH IDEA OF THE MONTH AWARD

“Dipping into alternative funding: Pastors Ray and Simone Bellevue say corporate sponsorship has done “nothing but good” for their church, formerly Tustin Assembly of God. His church has sold much of the “visual space” in their facility to advertisers, including the bathroom stalls to Burger King, the rim of the collection plates to Hewlett-Packard and […]

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STRANGE HEAVEN VIDEO

Wow. I really do think this could qualify is one of the single strangest, jaw-dropping, awkward laughter-inducing, Christian videos I have ever seen. The responses of the audience alone are well worth the admission.

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MANLY GARDENING

It’s been a good week. Busy as always. Trips out of town to check on the sick, hospital board meetings, T-ball games and services at the prison were just a few of the activities this week. GARDENING: Lea and I spent the week setting out flowers in the flower beds. It’s something I’ve learned to […]

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THINGS CHANGE, BUT GOD REMAINS THE SAME

Last week I sat in a brand new car. No, it wasn’t mine. The new car smell was intoxicating. The gadgets were amazing. The navigation system was mind boggling. As I sat behind the wheel, the new owner explained all the new and latest gadgets to me. I was in awe. It had safety features […]

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Are You A Church-Goer or a Christian

The church is full of “the guy on the left.” What we need is more of “the guy on the right.” Which one are you?

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10 BOOKS THAT HAVE GREATLY AFFECTED MY LIFE

10. His Needs Her Needs – Dr. Willard Harley Quite possibly the most used book in my library. 9. The Holiness of God – R.C. SproulChapter 4, “The Trauma of Holiness” is an absolutely fantastic chapter. 8. Too Busy NOT To Pray – Bill Hybels Here’s an amazing book for your prayer life. 7. The […]

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EMOTIONAL AFFAIRS

Nine out of ten affairs begin with an emotional attraction. It usually happens when a need that a spouse is not meeting begins to be met by another person of the opposite sex. I once read somewhere that it may be far easier to have an emotional affair than you may realize. When you find […]

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A WEEK AROUND THE MORGAN HOUSE

I was informed today that there are 50 (mostly teenagers) from the Childress church going to Mexico City this July. Two years ago when we went, we took 30. I am SO looking forward to that week! I LOVE hanging with our youth group! And I love serving people in Mexico. It’s been a grieving […]

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LIFE’S SHORT. GET A DIVORCE

What’s Wrong with this Picture? You’ve probably read the story behind the billboard (pictured above) in Chicago that says, “Life is Short. Get a divorce.” It wasn’t so much about the partially clothed man and woman on the law firm’s ad. It was the phrase “Life is short. Get a divorce,” that drew scores of […]

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It Is GOOD to be a Child of God (Sermon Link)

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.” Ephesians 1:3 A man bought a brand new Ferrari. He wanted to get a blessing for it, so he went to see his priest. “Father O’Malley, can I have […]

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TEN THINGS I HAVE WRITTEN IN MY BIBLE

I write in my Bible, a lot. I write notes about scriptures and about things that encourage me. Here are 10 things I’ve written in my bible that remind me of what’s important. #1 Jesus was approachable and touchable, I should be too.#2 Enjoy your spiritual Journey. It’s a marathon not a 40-yard dash.#3 Be […]

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SLEEPING UGLY

At bed time last night Cooper climbed up in my lap with a couple of books. “The Monster at the End of the Book” with lovable old Grover, and of course “The Three Pigs” were there too. I’ve read The Three Little Pigs so many times that I wrote a post about it a few […]

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CANCER CHANGED MY LIFE

Lance Armstrong has a commercial airing in which he stares into the camera and says, “Remember me cancer? You made me who I am today?” That quote really hits home with me. On May 6th of 2003, I sat in Dr. Pate’s office and he looked at me and said, “You have cancer. You’re young […]

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GOOD COMMUNICATION IN MARRIAGE

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard women say, “My husband just can’t communicate.” I don’t know how many times I’ve heard men say, “I just can’t get a straight answer from my wife.” There is no arguing that men and women communicate differently. God wired-up men and women very differently. While women focus […]

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About Me

Trey Morgan Here are my thoughts about marriage, family, raising children, humor, faith and the life God intended for us all. I am a Christian husband and father, who moonlights as the minister for the church of Christ in Childress, Texas. My wife Lea and I have been married for 25 years. We are doing our best to raise our 4 boys, who are all growing up way too fast.

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Trey Morgan
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Husband, father and cancer survivor ... who moonlights as the senior minister for the Childress Church of Christ. Tweets about life, marriage & randomness.
  • thanks for all you do for our school, kids and community.
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