“Random photos that make me smile” day!

1-IMG_5411Today’s random photos come from Uzbekistan, Dunn, Florida, Richmond, and Wake Forest. What they all have in common is that they make me smile.

  • Uzbekistan: Here are our son and daughter-in-love – Andrew and Alicia – channeling Harry and Meghan. Probably attending some “do” at the British Ambassador’s home in Tashkent.
  • Dunn: Fun golf scramble to support youth mission ventures at my friend Howard’s Presbyterian church. What a beautiful and challenging course to enjoy!
  • Florida: This photograph of Darth Maul on the bench in our garden popped up as a Facebook memory. He didn’t live to see North Carolina, but he still makes us smile.
  • Richmond: Our daughter Naomi is already in the summer swimming pool cycle with David and Beks. Look at the joy!
  • Wake Forest: Outside Maul Hall. See, I’m smiling already! The pictures must be working!

33398283_10101299010230382_8270892923625668608_nMaybe you, too, need to smile today. You are more than welcome to share my joy.

Come to think of it, that’s my theory when it comes to sharing faith, too. I want you to share the love, the light, the promise, and the joy. That is my invitation, that is why I talk about Jesus.

This is especially on my mind because I just got through listening to a message where the preacher seemed more interested in pointing out why so many people, “won’t be going to heaven.”

However, as I frequently like to point out, my relationship with God through Jesus is absolutely NOT about getting my ticket punched for heaven. Instead – if we are already caught up in accepting the beautiful invitation Jesus always is, and if we are invested in getting on board with God’s initiatives of grace and mercy and more – the impossible to conceive idea of “heaven” is simply going to be an extension of our already active relatioships with God after this life (as we understand it) transforms into something else (as we don’t understand it).

So – and in the spirit of sharing some joy – it is my prayer that you not only smile at these images, but that you begin to think about what it might mean to align yourself with the Jesus quality of light in a more intentional manner.

Peace, love, promise, and blessings – DEREK

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Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.

Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.

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