| Clergy Corner

CLERGY CORNER: Admit It – get rid of it

Posted on 17 April 2014 by L.Moore

This week, I Googled “skin deep.” I came up with a ton of hits, but the first was for a line of cosmetics. What do we use cosmetics for? We use them to make ourselves look better. We use them to cover up various real or perceived flaws on our face and elsewhere. I think we all deal with skin conditions over the course of our lifetimes as sometimes we are quite thick skinned and sometimes we are quite thin skinned.

Sometimes, we are so sure that we are right that we stubbornly refuse to even consider for even a split second that we might in some way be in the wrong. And, other times, we are so sensitive that no matter what someone may say to us or how they might look at us, we view it as a sleight.

And on those occasions, where we find out that what we perceived as an insult was in no way, shape or form meant as one, or when we find that we were wrong and someone else was right, apologies and admissions of error do not come so easily. In fact, we will often try to cover up the error of our ways.

But imagine if each time you said something bad about someone, that an icky, pussy growth appeared on your face, or your hands, or somewhere else so apparent that anyone seeing you would notice it immediately. What would you try to do?

Well, not too long ago a woman, who suffered her third fall, as she continued to insist she did not need the walker that had been prescribed for her, was re-admitted to a local health center. Only, this time, I was informed by staff that, unlike the other times, she was not coming out of her room. She refused to go to therapy and she turned down all the activities that were available at the center. I went to her room to see her and when I got a look at her face and saw the giant shiner, the big black eye on her face, I figured it had happened during the fall. And do you know why she refused to go out of her room? That’s right, she didn’t want anyone to see her like that.

One of the staff offered to put some cosmetics on to cover it up as much as possible, but I am not so sure that that was the wisest thing to do for this particular woman. I think this woman needed to let others see her shiner and I think, when they asked her what happened, she should use it to teach others the error of her ways … that she should admit that she got it because she was too darned stubborn to listen. And, I think, in doing so, she might not only have helped convince someone else to use a walker, but she would constantly be programming her own thought patterns to use it in the future.

On this Pesach, this Festival of Freedom, I hope that each time you hear yourself complaining about something that someone else does or says that you don’t like, instead of immediately trying to change them, go home, stand in front of the mirror and take a good long look at yourself and, then, go about admitting your own faults and begin the work of freeing yourself from those very faults that you so plainly see in others.

Shalom my friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach. We welcome you to join our warm and caring family for Shabbat and festival services. We’ll make your heart glow…who knows, you might even fall in love with Shul all over again.

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CLERGY CORNER: Easter

Posted on 10 April 2014 by L.Moore

Easter is coming very soon and many people will be pouring into churches to celebrate. What are we actually celebrating? Do we make it all about the Easter bunny and the candy? Don’t get me wrong. I like candy, probably a little too much. As a matter of fact, I even think that Easter candy is better than Halloween candy. Easter candy is the absolute best candy of all time, in my humble opinion, but it is not about the candy. God loves you so much that He sent His son.

John 3:16-17

16 For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish, but have eternal life.

17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. NLT

God gave us all the wonderful gift of His son Jesus. Jesus did some amazing miracles while He was on the earth but, to me, the most amazing thing He did was the way He lived His life. Jesus lived a life without sin! Whenever I think about that, I cannot help but think “WOW.” I did not even make it through yesterday, let alone for my whole life. Jesus came and lived a sinless life.

Then He went to the cross to pay for my sins and your sins. Jesus deserved righteousness, but He took our place so His righteousness could be ours. Jesus took what I deserved so I could have what He deserved.

2 Corinthians 5:21

21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. KJV

God loves us so much that He sent His son. The son loves us so much that He came. Jesus loves us so much that He suffered the pain of the cross to pay for our sins. We all know that the story does not end there because the Easter story is about the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The week before Easter is Palm Sunday and the beginning of Passion Week and, on Sunday, Jesus came because He had to finish what He started. We all may go through times where we feel unloved or feel like no one cares about us, but my prayer is that you will always remember how much God the Father loves you. Jesus had a hard time dealing with the fact that, in order for Him to go and pay for our sins, He would have to be separated from His father. Jesus did that for us so we would never have to experience being away and separated from God the Father. The Bible encourages us by telling us that God will never leave us or abandon us. I want to thank you, God, for the fact that you love us all so much that you gave your son. Have a great Easter.

Tony Guadagnino is the pastor at Christian Love Fellowship Church. 801 SE 10 St., Deerfield Beach, FL, 33441.www.CLFministries.org

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CLERGY CORNER: What are we searching for?

Posted on 03 April 2014 by L.Moore

It is just two short weeks to the Festival of Pesach, or, as most of you know it in English, the festival of Passover (begins evening of Apr. 14). Many of us are in the midst of cleaning our house of Chometz, of any products that we are forbidden to have in our possession during this Feast of Unleavened Bread.

We search our houses from one corner to the next, making sure not to miss a single crumb of leavened bread so that everything is totally Kosher l’Pesach, that it is fit for use … meeting the requirements for food that is acceptable during this holiday.

There is a wonderful tradition that certainly grabbed me as a child. It added a lot of fun and anticipation to the start of the festival as my parents would hide little bits of bread in various places in the house and to prepare for the week.

We would shut off the lights and light a candle and walk around the house ,trying to find each and every remaining piece of bread. When a piece was found, we would use a large feather and gently brush the pieces of bread we found into a plastic bag that would later be taken out of the house and burned the next morning. The truth is, I didn’t really care for the feather … and I never particularly liked the heat from the fire that was created to burn the last of the bread. But the search for the bread, that search always filled me with awe, with joy, with excitement.

And sure enough, when the festival actually began, and the first and second night we held huge Seders in our house, there was yet another search that I anxiously awaited — the search for the Afikomen, for the special dessert served on Passover. But, for those of you who might be attending your very first Seder this year, don’t get too excited, because the dessert itself is just a plain piece of matza … no margarine, no jelly, just a plain, simple piece of unleavened bread.

After the luscious meal served at the Seder, the Afikomen for dessert might be quite a letdown, but the search, as I’ve already told you … I loved the search.

And isn’t that what we are all doing? We are searching. I guess the big question is what are we, better yet, what are you, searching for?

I know that to prepare for the festival many of our children will delight in searching the house for every last bread crumb they can find, so that our homes are totally free of any leavened bread. But ridding the home of such foods that we put in our mouths is not enough. If we really want to teach our children the importance of Passover and of ridding the house of breads that rise, if we really want to teach our children about making the house Kasher L’Peach, then we must not only get rid of those things that are forbidden from going into our mouths. We must also get rid of those things that are forbidden from coming out of our mouths.

Our body is a temporary home. It houses our soul. Our mouths are a doorway, allowing things to enter and to leave. May G-d give us the wisdom and the strength to watch not just the foods we put in, but the words we allow out.

Wishing you all a most joyous pesach,

Shalom my friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach. We welcome you to join our warm and caring family for Shabbat and festival services. We’ll make your heart glow…who knows, you might even fall in love with Shul all over again.

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CLERGY CORNER: “The God of Mercy”

Posted on 27 March 2014 by L.Moore

Malaysian Airlines Flight 370 carried 12 crew members and 227 passengers from 14 nations. It is no wonder world news has been dominated since March 8 by its disappearance.

The massive air–sea rescue effort involved 26 nations and has been described as the largest air – sea rescue effort in history. This comes on the heels of 2013, which has been labeled the safest air travel year in history.

When days turn to weeks and the whereabouts of the plane, crew and passengers remain unknown, when what happened and why continue to be a mystery, the world is dumbfounded.

Transponders, black boxes, pings and other things are of little comfort to families and other people of compassion who grieve this tragedy. And nothing reawakens the world to the frailty of the human condition like a catastrophe. A catastrophe has to be severe in order to capture the world’s attention, but what is it about a calamity that commands our attention? It has to be more than loss of life because an estimated 15,000 children die of malnutrition every day. In terms of humans perishing, that would be equivalent to more than 60 large airplane crashes every day.

Perhaps one requirement of a catastrophe, if it is to command the world’s attention, is that it be an identifiable event, something we can imaginatively get our arms around. Another intriguing ingredient is mystery. It is stirring when we do not know what happened. The possibility of negligent or criminal wrongdoing is also gripping. The pursuit of blame is a close cousin to the pursuit of justice and these are the kinds of pursuits that elevate our collective adrenaline.

We also invariably want to determine how even accidents could have been avoided after they have not been avoided. We believe natural disasters can be guarded against and losses can be minimized through good preparations, and they can be and they are.

But the truth is, life is fragile and too often life seems shortlived because, in this lifetime, it is short-lived.

There are times when horrible things happen and our vulnerability is exposed. We are not invincible. The same tragedies that make some people question the existence of God draw others of us to our knees in prayer.

Dear God, we pray for the soul of every person on Flight 370, for their families and friends, for the thousands of people involved in search and rescue operations and for countless others around the world drawn to compassion for people they will never know or meet. We pray your spirit bless them and give them comfort only you can provide.”

Catastrophes and our response to them, especially the horrible things that command the world’s attention, can draw people from different parts of the world, different cultures and different languages closer to the Creator and thus closer to one another. May this be part of the legacy of Flight 370.

The Psalmist writes, “Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast.” [139:7–10]

Should Flight 370 be discovered at the farthest limits of the sea, then have faith this is where the God of mercy will also be.

Dennis Andrews is a minister at Community Presbyterian Church of Deerfield Beach (Steeple on the Beach) located five blocks south of Hillsboro on A1A. See more at www.communitych.org or on Facebook. Worship gatherings are Saturday at Six, Sunday morning at 8:30 and 11 a.m.

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CLERGY CORNER: The salt of the Earth

Posted on 20 March 2014 by L.Moore

Not long ago, I had an issue with my blood pressure. Fortunately, I have a wonderful Cardiologist, Dr. Lawrence Weinstein, and, with his wisdom, and a bit of mazel, the very first medicine he prescribed for me worked like a charm. Of course, while it worked, the first few samples I was given needed to be cut in half and, let me tell you something, it was not exactly a mechaya to my taste buds.

Mary Poppins sang, “Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.” And while a spoonful of sugar can, indeed, make the medicine go down, it can also make your glucose level go up. And that is when someone mockingly said, “Why don’t you just take it with a grain of salt.” But any of you who have dealt with high blood pressure know that salt is not such a wise thing either as it will make your blood pressure go up. Oy, sometimes you just can’t win.

Truth is, I love salt and most of you who know me know that I also love chocolate … chocolate covered almonds, chocolate covered peanuts, chocolate covered macadamias, chocolate covered pretzels and, let’s not forget the various chocolate pastries we have at our Kiddush at the end of our services.

Then again, we also have things like white fish salad, lox and chips, and do you know what all of those have in common? That’s right, they are loaded with salt. The other day I felt like I was coming down with something and I went out to get some chicken soup. The regular kosher soup I looked at had over 1,000 milligrams of salt in it, so I got the low sodium version, and it still had some 570 grams, enough to overdo my quota for the day.

You shall season your every offering of meal with salt, you shall not omit from your meal offering the salt of your covenant with G-d, with all your offerings you must offer salt.” (Vayikra 2:13)

To this day, when we partake of Challah on Shabbat, it is traditional to either dip it in salt or to sprinkle some salt on the piece we are about to eat as Challah is representative of one of the sacrifices and a sacrifice requires salt.

While my blood pressure causes me to say “No” to salt and to look at salt in a negative way, I cannot forget that there is a positive side, a holy side to salt as well. For instance, to this day when my throat gets sore, it is not unusual for me to take to gargling with warm salt water.

Isak Diinisen talks about the healing power of salt saying, “The cure for anything is salt water – sweat, tears or the sea.” When I dance, sweat pours out of my pores literally cleansing my body of many impurities. When I am by the sea, my mind is cleansed by the sound of the waves and the beauty of the waters. And, as for tears, what is the main ingredient in tears? Salt water! Tears, too, are cleansing. The falling of those precious drops from your tear ducts cleanses your heart and your soul and enables you to let go of a lot of hurt.

So have a good sweat. Have a good cry. And go spend some time relaxing down by the sea, and, while you are there, I hope you can feel Gd calling out to you reminding you that you are the salt of the earth.

Shalom my friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach. We welcome you to join our warm and caring family for Shabbat and festival services. We’ll make your heart glow…who knows, you might even fall in love with Shul all over again.

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CLERGY CORNER: Try happiness

Posted on 13 March 2014 by L.Moore

James 5:13

13 Are any of you suffering hardships? You should pray. Are any of you happy? You should sing praises.

NLT

No one is exempt from going through bad times, but please do not forget that we have many good times also. Whether everything is great or it totally stinks, God should always have our attention.

Last Sunday, when I went to church, I knew I was in for a great day. How could I not be? I was in God’s House, the “Happiest Place on Earth.” However, as I looked around at this happy place, I started to think. In this happy place, there was a crying child, a man who just lost a family member to cancer, a young woman going through a divorce and a preacher who felt each of their pain. I couldn’t help but think, even in God’s House, the happiest place on earth, there is still suffering and hurting people. Check out Psalms Chapter 20 (Awesome)

Psalms 20

1 In times of trouble, may the LORD respond to your cry. May the God of Israel keep you safe from all harm.

2 May he send you help from his sanctuary and strengthen you from Jerusalem.

3 May he remember all your gifts and look favorably on your burnt offerings.

4 May he grant your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans.

5 May we shout for joy when we hear of your victory, flying banners to honor our God. May the LORD answer all your prayers.

6 Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed king. He will answer him from his holy heaven and rescue him by his great power.

7 Some nations boast of their armies and weapons, but we boast in the LORD our God.

8 Those nations will fall down and collapse, but we will rise up and stand firm.

9 Give victory to our king, O LORD! Respond to our cry for help.

NLT

For some, our happiest place is with our family and friends, or taking a walk on the beach. We cannot escape suffering; no matter how hard we try we are not exempt.

Sometimes, suffering is used for correcting; sometimes, it is used for God’s glory; sometimes, it is used to build our character and, sometimes, one person suffers for another’s benefit.

Yet, there are times when we really don’t understand why others or we ourselves are suffering. Like Job from the Bible, we must seek to trust God and endure because we win when we do! We have a happy place found in the presence of the Lord. If God could hear Jonah’s cry from inside the whale, then I am sure he can hear your cry. One thing is for sure: if we are suffering in any way, then we should be praying and talking to God a lot. What do you think?

Perhaps, you are in a season of hurt or suffering right now. In this moment, it may not be clear why your suffering is happening. Your role in this season is to spend time with and reach out to God, knowing that He will help you through this trial with His strength. In this way, at the end of the day, you will be able to rejoice in who God is.

James 5:13 says we should pray and praise God during the good times and the bad times. In good or bad times, we’d better be spending time with God. Try happiness; it is found in the presence of the Lord.

Tony Guadagnino is the pastor at Christian Love Fellowship Church, 801 SE 10 St.,Deerfield Beach, 33441. www.CLFministries.org

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CLERGY CORNER: One plus one is one

Posted on 06 March 2014 by L.Moore

I have this thing about using various melodies for the hymn Adon Olam. Recently, I did it to the tune of the theme from Gilligan’s Island. This was the story of the Skipper and his little buddy Gilligan, along with those who sailed with them on a three-hour tour on the S.S. Minnow, a trip that went horribly awry.

Bob Denver, Bob Hale Jr., Jim Backus … the movie star, the professor and Marianne … every one of these castaways was very different from one another. Each had their own talents, and each learned that, if they were going to survive on that island, then they had better learn to live together as one.

Of course, as far as I can remember, religion never seemed to come up in the show. I guess that was a good thing too, because they would have spent far too much of their time arguing over how many houses of worship to build and which one was better than the other and why.

Most of you remember that old joke about two people who are marooned on a deserted island for several years and, finally, a ship comes to rescue them. When the ship’s captain gets off to meet them, he finds that they have built three houses of worship … and, since there are only two castaways, he has to ask, “Why three?” To which they reply, “One is for me to pray in, the other for him, and the third neither of us would even think of ever walking into.”

According to the Torah, we were like one heart and one soul when we accepted G-d’s Law. That’s right, we were one … and isn’t that what we say of G-d in the Shema, Hear, Oh, Israel, the Lord our G-d is One!

Most of you have heard about the new math. But, while two plus two equaling three might be a bit confusing for you, get this, if you look up the word ONE in the dictionary, one of the definitions will say something along the lines of constituting a unified entity of two or more components … or being in agreement or union.

What on earth does that mean? Does it require two or more to make one?

On Friday nights, we chant L’Cha Dodi which tells us to greet the bride of Sabbath to greet Shabbat as we would a bride. In order for there to be a bride, there has to be another component. There has to be a partner, a groom. Of course, there would be no bride or groom without a mother and father … no mother and father without a bubbe and zaide, etc., etc. And there would be no one if not for G-d.

When Moses gathers all of Israel together again, it is not just to gather them together in one and the same place, at one and the same time, but to instill in them again one and the same vision. Sadly, I have heard far too many politicians on TV lately say that they do not share the same vision. It is time for all of us to gather and find that joint vision again– for that is what makes this country great.

If you want to be Echad … if you want to be one, then you have to EeChed. You have to unite. Let us unite again as one family, one nation, under one flag, under One G-d.

Shalom my friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach. We welcome you to join our warm and caring family for Shabbat and festival services. We’ll make your heart glow…who knows, you might even fall in love with Shul all over again.

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CLERGY CORNER: Ever think about Adoption?

Posted on 27 February 2014 by L.Moore

Many years ago, a friend and his wife learned they would not be able to have their own natural born children. They decided to adopt. It took the patience of a judge for them to move through the process, but they finally succeeded.

They imagined an infant from the beginning. An infant, they thought, would be perfect and know them as parents from the outset. What they received were not one, but two, young boys. These boys were anything but infants and anything but perfect. They had been abused by their drug-addicted parents. The boys arrived with mental, psychological and emotional baggage.

But, my friend and his wife were steadfast in their parental duties, long-suffering in their love for these two boys through formative years of school expulsions, arrests, juvenile detention and one heart-wrenching problem after another.

My friend once told me, “As hard as it has been, our faith has grown alongside these boys. The experience may have given us insight as to how God feels watching us grow!”

Adoption meant these boys received far more than a new last name and safe place to stay. They were adopted into a family. They were forgiven even when they didn’t deserve it. They were loved. They survived.

Did you ever wonder what would have become of baby Moses had he not been adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter or what would have happened to Hadassah, the beautiful young woman who became Queen Esther, had she not been adopted by good ole Uncle Mordecai?

Moses likely would have been drowned with the other male babies. Hadassah probably would have been killed with the rest of her people. The course of human history and the development of Judeo Christian faith traditions would at the very least be different were it not for God’s plans for adoption.

What are God’s plans for adoption today?

There are thousands of children in South Florida in need of physical adoption. If you are able, then I encourage you to consider adoption, But, the truth is, we all have need of adoption, just an adoption of a different, more permanent, kind.

The Apostle Paul says it this way: “Even before God made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ….” [Ephesians 1:4- 5, NLT]

Our most important adoption is made possible by the cross, not by the courts. There is no lengthy legal process. We consent to our adoption when we accept Christ as Lord.

No perfection required. None of us remain innocent as a newborn child. We all have baggage. None of us are always loveable, and we may not deserve forgiveness, but we all can have it through Christ.

Pray God continues to be steadfast and longsuffering with the open loving arms of adoption, patiently watching us grow and accepting us into the family.

Ever think about adoption? I hope so because the most consequential adoption you will ever think about is your own …

Dennis Andrews is a minister at Community Presbyterian Church of Deerfield Beach (Steeple on the Beach) located five blocks south of Hillsboro on A1A. See more at www.comm unitych.org or on Facebook. Worship gatherings are: Saturdays @ Six, Sunday morning at 8:30 and 11 a.m.

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CLERGY CORNER: Holy to me

Posted on 20 February 2014 by L.Moore

(Great thanks to Rabbi Jacqueline Mates-Muchin for getting the creative juices flowing.)

I know you probably weren’t expecting a Rabbi to bring up Valentine’s Day, but, in case you haven’t figured it out in reading my columns here in The Observer, I am a romantic at heart. So, when I studied the Torah Portion the other week, I couldn’t help but find connections between them.

This Torah reading gave a description of the special clothing, the Kohanim, that Aaron and his sons were to wear. Since Valentine’s Day was coming up, many ads were pushing clothing and jewelry. They showed items of adornment that can be worn on the head, the neck and on the wrist. Why are these items shown as gifts for Valentine’s Day? Well, aside from the fact that the stores are hoping to make lots of money, hopefully, these types of gifts are a way of telling someone you love that they are special to you.

After all, I would not advise you to get the love of your life a new vacuum or a new mop along with a Cupid Card. Why? Because that would not be a very good way of saying that they are special.

So how does this connect with the Torah Reading? Well, for that, we have to look at why Aaron and his sons had special vestments to wear and I can think of no better way of finding the answer then looking at that last piece of the coordinated outfit, the frontlet that the priest was to wear on his forehead, because that piece was inscribed with the words “Holy to the Eternal.”

Of course, reading this, you might think for a moment that only the Priests were special to G-d, that only the priests were to be holy. But we are told to be “A Kingdom of Priests …”

In other words, we are all supposed to be special and we are all supposed to be holy. We are also supposed to emulate G-d. If G-d feeds the hungry, then we are to feed the hungry. If G-d clothes the naked, then we are to clothe the naked. And, if G-d finds people holy … if G-d loves others, then we to are to find people holy and love them.

Now, please don’t get me wrong, in Judaism we are not exactly fond of tattoos, so I am not suggesting that you have your loved ones tattooed on the forehead with the words “Holy to me.” But, I would suggest you try this to add to the holiness and the love in your life … each time you look at those you love, imagine those words on their forehead. Remember that we have the ability to decide what is holy and special to us.

In a perfect world, we would all be special to one another; but, for now, having just celebrated Valentine’s Day, at least see those words on your spouse, on your parents, on your children and then let those words change how you treat them.

Before you do something like getting angry or giving the silent treatment, before you tell them you don’t have time for this or that, don’t just imagine the words “Holy to me” on their forehead. Show them how Holy they are to you and show them how very much you love them as, when you do, you truly show them that they are consecrated unto you.

Shalom my friends,

Rabbi Craig H. Ezring

Rabbi Ezring is the spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel of Deerfield Beach. We welcome you to join our warm and caring family for Shabbat and festival services. We’ll make your heart glow…who knows, you might even fall in love with Shul all over again.

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CLERGY CORNER: Have a plan

Posted on 13 February 2014 by L.Moore

JEREMIAH 29:11

11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

NLT

God has a plan for you and He wants to help you and give you hope. We all plan and build our lives around things. We plan around all of our extracurricular activities: dinner, dancing, sporting events, gym, golf, tennis, etc. We plan for death by making a will to make sure everything goes to the right place. We plan for our vacation by making sure we know where we are staying and what activities we will be doing. We even plan the times we are going to certain places and what rides we want to go on in the amusement park. When we get ready to build something, we get a set of blueprints or plans done to know what we want to accomplish. There is even a plan for the plumbing, the electrical and for the walls.

God has a plan for you because He loves you and cares about you. God wants you to be blessed and happy. If God has a plan for you, because of His love for you, then make sure you do the same for those you love. Valentine’s Day is here and I want to encourage you to plan a special day because of the love you have for others in your life. We plan so many things in our lives that we need to make sure we have a plan to make Valentine’s Day special and memorable. It is that time of the year when we can let those who are special to us know exactly how we feel. Valentine’s Day is not only about romance, but it is also about love. Love comes in many different forms in our lives and we usually use it for not so important things. I could say that I love my wife, my children, my parents, going to church, eating out, buying electronics and my job. That would actually mean something a little different for each one on my list, but we all tend to use the word “LOVE” for many different things. Let’s all show those who are special to us how much they mean to us by telling them we love them and also telling them why. I know sometimes it is hard to express our emotions, but it is OK; it is Valentine’s Day, after all.

Just do it, and make a plan to go buy your cards, candy and flowers (today) ahead of time, and do not wait until the last minute. Plan now and make sure those people in your life know that you love them and make sure they know why you love them. Let God be our example and plan for those we love the same way He has a plan for us. The plan doesn’t work if you don’t work the plan. God has a plan for your life and now you have a plan to follow God and to tell others that you love them.

Tony Guadagnino is a pastor at Christian Love Fellowship Church, Weekend Services are on Saturdays at 6:30 p.m. and Sundays at 10 a.m.

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