Saturday, February 4, 2012

Seize The Day!

The year 2012 is a leap year. We get an “extra” day! What will we do with it? February 29, 2012 falls on a Wednesday, so most of us will likely be going through our normal Wednesday routines: work, school, etc. but anyway you look at it, 2012 will have 366 days in it. How will we treat this bonus day? Every year we have daylight savings. We spring ahead and then we fall back. When we fall back, you always hear people say, “We gain an extra hour of sleep!” but is that really true? How many people say up a little later watching a movie or browsing the internet, knowing that there is an extra hour in the schedule? Bars that normally close at 2 AM suddenly get an extra hour to operate their business, and subsequently, people spend another hour drinking. As a consequence, the day after the Fall changing of the clocks is not often filled with well-rested people. Just to prove that we’re never satisfied, when Spring rolls around and we set the clocks ahead, we lament the loss of that hour of sleep, even though we squandered the hour we had gained a few short months ago.

In Ephesians 5: 15-16. Paul tells us to “make the most of every opportunity”. What does that mean? The Latin phrase “Carpe Diem” is often used – “Seize the day!” The Greeks would say, “Eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we may all die.” Is that what we, as Christians should be doing with our time? Paul warns us to be careful how we live and to make the most of every opportunity. Verses 17 through 20 warn us not to spend our days just having fun and feeding the desires of the body but to be filled with The Spirit, giving thanks to God in everything.

The movie, “Groundhog Day” stars Bill Murray as Pittsburg weatherman, Phil Connors, who comes to Punxsutawney to cover the Groundhog Day ceremonies. He becomes trapped in a never ending cycle of repeating February 2nd every time he wakes up. It’s always the same and he’s the only one who is aware that this is happening. At first, Phil does everything he can to escape. When he realizes that he can’t escape, he spends his time doing things that he wouldn’t normally do – he steals, overeats, drinks heavily, tricks a woman into a one-night stand with him and even goes about trying to end his life. Ultimately, Phil embraces the extra time and decides to spend it on less selfish pursuits. He roams the town every day helping people. He catches a boy who falls from a tree, changes a tire for a group of elderly ladies; he nurses an old homeless man who is sick and dying. He also spends his time getting to know the townsfolk and learning new skills (piano, ice sculpture, etc.). Phil finally seizes the day and makes the most of it, breaking the cycle and freeing him from his never ending Groundhog Day.

That’s all fine and well for a movie, but what about us? How can we make the most of our days? It’s all here, in the bible. You can start by reading it daily. Pray daily. That extra hour at daylight savings? Spend it in prayer rather than sleeping, watching TV, at the bar, etc. Our extra day this year? Find one day in your schedule to help someone who really needs it, to attend a Christian conference, volunteer at a mission or the soup kitchen, attend or even lead a bible study. The opportunities are numerous; we just have to seize them.

In Luke, Chapter 9, verses 57-62, Jesus and the disciples are traveling to Jerusalem and he is talking about his coming sacrifice and attempting to prepare his disciples for what they must endure. The Message relays the story this way:

57On the road someone asked if he could go along. "I'll go with you, wherever," he said. 58Jesus was curt: "Are you ready to rough it? We're not staying in the best inns, you know." Jesus said to another, "Follow me." 59He said, "Certainly, but first excuse me for a couple of days, please. I have to make arrangements for my father's funeral." 60Jesus refused. "First things first. Your business is life, not death. And life is urgent: Announce God's kingdom!" 61Then another said, "I'm ready to follow you, Master, but first excuse me while I get things straightened out at home." 62Jesus said, "No procrastination. No backward looks. You can't put God's kingdom off till tomorrow. Seize the day."

In the movie, Star Trek: Generations, Captain Piccard says, “Someone once told me that time was a predator that stalked us all our lives. I rather believe that time is a companion who goes with us on the journey and reminds us to cherish every moment, because it will never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we've lived.” How we’ve lived is certainly important – we need to live as citizens of Heaven – heirs to the kingdom and servants of the Living God. As Jesus said, “Announce God’s Kingdom!” Every day we do will certainly be a day that we have seized.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's come to my attention that a good friend of ABMOPAD is undergoing treatments for a brain tumor. Tim Schwartz, former ABCOPAD pastor and keynote speaker at our 49th retreat in 2003 has been doing disaster relief in Galveston. You can read about his story on his blog -

Please pray for Tim and his family!

Friday, February 19, 2010

A new year is upon us

Greetings bloggers! I would like to wish everybody a happy and joyous New Year and pray that 2010 is meaningful and glorious for you, to the glory of God.

Our theme for the 2010 retreat will be "Serving the Lord with Gladness", based on Psalm 100. Please prayerfully consider joining us on August 6 - 8, 2010 at Shippensburg University.

More to come!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

55th Retreat!

Hi everyone!

Tomorrow (July 31, 2009) begins our 55th Annual Men's Retreat at Shippensburg University! We were printing badges last night and have 178 pre-registered. Not a bad number. Hopefully we'll have a number of guys arrive to register on-site and put us up over 200.

It should be a great time! I hope to see you there!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Retreat Discount Extended through March 2009!

Hi Bloggers!

I just wanted to update you on the fact that our discount for early registration for the 2009 ABMOPAD Retreat has been extended through March 2009.

Simply register for a full conference attendance and pay a deposit of $75 by March 31, 2009 and we will deduct $15 from your final fee. Per-Diem registrations and Youth registrations are not included in the discount, but Youth registrations are still 50% off the regular full conference registration.

Any way you cut it, the 55th Annual ABMOPAD Retreat is a GREAT DEAL!

Visit to find registration materials.

Thanks and God Bless!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Look! Discount for early registration!

Hi everyone! I haven't updated this blog is quite a while but I figured I'd drop in and note that we've created a new Penn-Del tips. It's available from our website Among other things in the newsletter, we unveiled that there is a $15 discount for anyone who registers for the 55th Annual Retreat and pays a $75 deposit by January 31, 2009.

That's right, just print out and complete your registration form, mail it with a check (payable to ABMOPAD) for $75 by January 31, 2009 and your final total will be reduced by $15. That's a real bargain!

Visit for more information.

Hope to see you in Shippensburg!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Hold on tight!

I recently traveled to San Francisco for business. I have been to this city more times than I can count and I always love to go there. One of my favorite "touristy" things to do is to ride the cable cars. They are a wonderful contraption and truly an engineering marvel.

With the cable cars, there is a cable that is constantly moving at approximately 9 miles per hour under the street. In order for the car to move along its track, the leverman pulls a lever causing a clamp to reach into the channel in the street and grab the cable. At this point, the car simply comes along for the ride on the cable. It's important to note that the leverman cannot simply pull the lever and let it go. He needs to hold on tight and keep pressure on, otherwise the clamp will slip and the cable car will either not move or even start to roll backwards.

The same can be said about our relationship with Jesus Christ. Christ is always moving in our lives. We must take an active role and hold onto him, though. Especially when the hills get tall, we just hold on tight to our Lord and Savior, otherwise we will either not move forward or we will start to slide backwards.

How do we hold on? Read the Word. Pray. Fellowship with other believers. These are so important to our Christian walk. Jesus is ready to cary us with him up the hills of life. Are you ready to hold on to Him?

Proverbs 3:5-6 says "Trust in the Lord, with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path."

Visit the ABMOPAD website at