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Have you ever prayed to love someone you don't really want to forgive?  

Friday on Connecting Faith, Jo spoke with Deidre Riggs, who specializes in bringing unity to our fractured relationships and polarized communities.  

 

How do we forgive those who may have wronged us, and how can we foster understanding between groups or individuals who believe something different than we do?  

 

A challenging conversation about self-preservation vs. opening ourselves up for deep conversations and deep rewards. 

 

You can catch Jo Bender each Friday at 12 noon CST on Faith Radio Network (the AM arm of KTIS). Click here to listen to Jo's interview with Deidre Riggs, or catch the podcast of Connecting Faith and many other programs like Live the Promise with Susie Larson, Just Thinking with Ravi Zacharias, or Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram at myfaithradio.com

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by McKayla Adams

 

Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ. 

—Romans 13:14a

 

Anyone who lives in Minnesota understands with sincere familiarity the concept of dressing up in layers.

 

The brutal and lengthy stretches of the bitter cold season make the bulky jackets, tightly wrapped scarves, and thick hats an adapted attire.

 

As a resident to a state with seemingly endless winters, I’ve become more than accustomed to piling on layer over layer.

 

I’m familiar with dressing myself in other forms of layers as well, but these layers do more harm than good, and I have a feeling I’m not alone.

 

I think we often dress ourselves in layers to hide our insecurities, our doubts; to cover up anxiety, depression, and pain.

 

Maybe these layers—coverings of sorts—have even turned into bitterness, hostility or pride as a defense mechanism to protect our fragile hearts from the hurt. An outer garment of smiles and laughter to cover up the hole of emptiness we don’t want gaping through, exposing the truth.

 

We layer our outside world as well: the outer surroundings of social events, gatherings, and parties to mask the loneliness that is a constant shadow lurking behind.

 

So many coverings, layers, and masks dress our external existence—to convince the crowds that we’re content. But even more so, these layers that we dress up in everyday are to convince ourselves. Maybe if we have it together on the outside, then we can have it together on the inside too. Maybe we can convince ourselves that the brokenness, pain, and emptiness aren’t really there.

 

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There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.

 —Eccleaiastes 3:1

 

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Once I found her sitting in the bathroom sink. She was fully clothed, and the sink was overflowing as the faucet water continued to cascade down the sink like Niagara Falls as she brushed her teeth with my toothbrush. She was enjoying her self-created mini-pool immensely.

 

Then, I found her in the backyard, “clothed” only in mud from head to toe, running and jumping around like a puppy who had drunk a full can of Red Bull.

 

At my husband’s out-of-town championship softball tournament, she again found a puddle. No surprise, she was covered head to toe in mud with no change of clothes in tow. (Yes, she and mud had a strong affinity from the start.)

 

One time when we were shopping, I turned to grab something off the shelf; when I went to put it in the cart, I was horrified to find it empty. I panicked and started racing around, looking like a crazy woman I’m sure, searching for my little escape artist. I found her a couple aisles away chatting with a stranger, having the time of her life.

 

Then there was the time I was working with my daughter playing by my side, but, the next thing I knew I heard a concerto of sorts on a piano down the hall. I quickly turned to see that she had indeed disappeared. I ran to find my daughter stomping up and down the piano keys, precariously hanging onto the ledge; she was just learning to walk!

 

The times are just too many count. Like when I found her completely emptying my kitchen cupboards. Or sliding down a slide head-first.

 

My daughter kept me hopping. And then some... Can anyone relate?

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Tagged in: joy motherhood peace

Moms have a special influence in the lives of their sons. So how can we help raise our boys to be men of character? Author Rick Johnson joined Jo Bender today on Connecting Faith to talk about the role moms play in developing qualities in our sons like honesty, respect, humility, and more. 

 

Listen to the podcast here

or catch Jo live every Friday at Noon on KTIS' Faith Radio Network AM 900 / 90.7 FM.

I’ve reached the age where my train of thought often leaves the station without me.

—Maxine

 

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I’m aging. And it’s getting more and more apparent: from the crow’s feet around my eyes to my ever-growing wattle neck. Yep. Inherited that lovely item from my grandma o. There were so many wonderful traits I would have loved to have inherited from grams, but, this is the one I got. 

 

Then there’s the problem of those little gray cells in my noggin. It seems this old brain of mine just doesn’t function like it used to. In fact, these days it seems to malfunction more often than it functions. 

 

Pretty sure roughly a third of my life has been spent standing in the middle of the room

wondering what I came in here for.

—Unknown

 

It’s like the Hallmark card I found years back. On the front cover was a cartoon figure of a large headed guy with little brain cells jumping out of his ears. When you opened it, it read, “Eugene didn’t mind that he was losing brain cells every day. He just wished they would be less dramatic about it.”

 

Recently, over the course of one day, I set out with our dog for a morning walk, but upon arriving home, realized I’d forgotten to grab the keys and had locked myself out of the house. When I finally did get back in, I decided to run to the local grocer. Filling my cart with all the necessary items, I reached the cashier only to discover I had forgotten my purse. Then to top it all off, at supper time, I turned on the wrong burner to boil some eggs, when I returned at the beeping of my timer, I was horrified to see my Le Creuset Dutch oven burnt to a crisp. A costly mistake that left me in tears.

 

My son keeps telling me, “Mom, you’ve got to focus.” He follows that by launching into the sermon I used to give him when he was young, ‘Before you walk out the door… before you start supper… ask yourself, “Where am I going? What am I doing? Stop and concentrate on the task at hand.”

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