The Broken Ones

What kind of people do you think Jesus likes to have around Him. You may have gotten the idea from some church people that Jesus prefers to be around preachers and Sunday School teachers and other good people. After all Jesus said be perfect because I am perfect and these people are perfect Right? Righttt!

I guess there are some people who think that Jesus would never choose to be anywhere near a drug addict or alcoholic or anyone who does bad things. And Jesus would never chose to be around anyone who does not go to church, would He?

I know that a lot of you have serious problems in your life. Maybe you are an addict of some kind. Most of us are. Maybe your marriage is closer to hell than heaven on earth. Some of you may have a child who has broken your heart or a parent who has broken your heart. Do you have scars and pains from past mistakes? Do you have wounds on your heart that still festers years after someone hurt you? If so I have some good news for you.

You are the kind of person Jesus likes to hang around with. Jesus loves broken people. The Bible tells us that “The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart.” So if you have a broken heart or a broken marriage, if you are the victim of broken promises or broken dreams you can know that God has a special love for you.

All people have an element of brokenness within them but few find the blessing that God has for them in there brokenness. Jesus said “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.” Many of you have a darkness in your hearts that comes from brokenness. But Jesus says you do not have to walk in this darkness because His Light can overcome your brokenness.

There is blessedness in brokenness and it is this, God will draw near to you in your brokenness. He says to you come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

A Gentle Old Soul

A gentle old soul walked into the shop the other day and called out, “Is anybody at home”. I looked up to see a precious friend of myself and most everyone in the community. I asked, “can I help you?” By the way he answered, I recognized he was lost in the fog of Alzheimer’s disease. He told me he was looking for his wife and I knew she was probably frantically looking for him.

Putting my hand on his shoulder, I walked with him to where his family was. As he shuffled along he talked about things that only he understood. He kept telling me he had something for me and that he was going to take care of me. I wish I could have made him understand that he truly was giving me something very precious. You see, Alzheimer’s had taken my daddy and as I walked with this gentle old soul, I felt as if I was walking with my own daddy once again.

In Genesis there is a story of a man named Enoch. The story goes that Enoch walked with God everyday. But one day Enoch could not be found, because that day God took him home to heaven. Now I think that like Enoch, those who suffer from Alzheimer’s walk close to God in ways you and I cannot understand. As these gentle old souls shuffle along on their last journey, I think that God walks with them. He listens to their jumbled words and untangles their confused thoughts. Then one day they are no longer here, their journey has ended. God has taken them home.

These gentle old souls with Alzheimer’s have much to give as they walk their last mile. It is easy for us who are mere mortals to be impatient and misunderstanding in their presence. But if we listen to their rambling stories, we might hear a conversation with God. If we put a hand on their shoulder and walk with them, we might find ourselves walking with The Father. Myself, I truly believe that God sent this gentle old soul into the shop the other day so I could walk with my daddy one more time.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

Pavement Ends Ministry

Jesus Will Not Send You Away

One day Jesus and His disciples were traveling to Tyre when a Gentile woman began to follow them. She was begging Jesus for help. Her daughter was demon possessed and she knew that Jesus was the only one who could help. The woman was not the kind of person the disciples wanted to be seen with so they urged Jesus to send her away. Because she bothered them!

As I read this story I was reminded of when I served as the pastor of different churches. Sometimes people who did not fit in would come to worship with us. Some of these people had bad hygiene; others had emotional issues or maybe addictions that they could not overcome. These people had needs that only Jesus could meet, but they were not the kind of people we wanted to be around. Often as the pastor I would hear insinuations that we should send these people away because they bothered the congregation.

The sad truth is we who are church people like to surround ourselves with other people who look, act and sound just like us. Since we have been commanded to love our neighbors, we try to make sure that our neighbors are people that we want to love. We do not like to have people in our midst who scare us or challenge us or make us uncomfortable. So we hope that these people will just go away because they bother us.

I have some good news. Good news for us good Christian church people who have needs that we keep hidden, because we do not want to bother anyone. Good news also for those who don’t fit into the church because their needs bother the people of the church. This good news is found in Psalms 145:18-19, it says “The LORD is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He also will hear their cry and save them.”

The gentile woman bothered the disciples so they wanted Jesus to send her away. But Jesus would not do that. Instead He allowed her to exercise her great faith. Then he met her need and He healed her daughter.

Today you have a need that only Jesus can fill. People may try to turn you away, because you bother them. But you don’t bother Jesus, have faith in Him, keep calling out to Him and I promise you Jesus will not send you away.

Douglas Huff

From Down Where the Pavement Ends

Eyes of Compassion

I must confess, what I am about to say I find it difficult to practice. You see, I am a child of God. That means I am in Christ and Christ is in me. In Christ, I am a new creature. This means I can no longer see the world through the filter of the culture I was raised in. The love of Christ compels me to see people with the eyes of Jesus.

Consider the tenderness you always have for a small child. Most of us will always treat children with kindness. We know that their view of the world is simpler than ours. Because of their innocence, they do not have a complete understanding of their surroundings. For this reason we will stoop to their level and speak to them with words they understand. We don’t expect them to act like grownups

The tenderness you have for a child, our Savior has for all people. When the Pharisees falsely arrested and condemned Him to death, Jesus still loved them. When Pilate tried to wash the guilt from his hands, Jesus would gladly have taken him by the hand and led him into righteousness. And when the soldiers beat Him and nailed Him to the cross Jesus prayed, “Father forgive them because they don’t understand.” Jesus did not come into this world to condemn anyone. He came to bring salvation to all people. Because He sees everyone through eyes of Compassion, it breaks His heart when people reject His love

We often look down on people who have made bad decisions. Emotions, personal situations and cultural peer pressure often lead people to make poor life choices. We tend to see these people as people to avoid. But the people we try to avoid, Jesus sees as precious souls. If indeed we are in Christ and Christ is in us, then we will love as He loves and learn to see everyone through His eyes of Compassion.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

Mother’s Day

Towels, washcloths, Kleenex, baby wipes, dish towels, and aprons. I believe that these things could be seen as emblems of motherhood because mamas are always wiping something. They wipe stinky bottoms, snotty noses, skinned knees and they have been known to wash a dirty face with spit and a Kleenex. Their time seems to be filled with wiping down kitchen counters, bathroom floors and the tears of broken hearted children. There is one thing for sure, mamas are always wiping something.

In the book of Judges there is woman named Deborah who served as a Judge and leader in the nation of Israel. She was a genuine hero in the history of God’s people and yet when she referred to herself in Judges 5:7, she spoke of herself simply as a “mother in Israel”. She was a poet, a prophetess, a judge and a heroic leader but her greatest source of pride and joy was in the fact that she was a mother. I believe that she knew that there is no higher calling on earth than motherhood.

The fact is while mamas might think that all they do is dry tears and wipe noses and bottoms in reality what Mama is doing is molding young lives and shaping the future. For this reason, we should all rise up and call our mothers and wives blessed. Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing, but a mother who fears the Lord and loves her family should be praised.

On this Mother’s Day, I want to honor the memories of my two grandmothers and my mother-in-law. I also want to give honor to my Mama and my Wife, their worth is far above rubies or any other earthly treasure. To all mothers, on this day and every day you are highly favored and greatly blessed. Thank you for always wiping up our mess.

Douglas Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends

Email-pavementendsministry@gmail.com

Reconciliation

He walked into the shop early on a Monday morning. With my usual greeting I asked him, “ how are you doing today?” His answer was “ I don’t know yet.” My pastor senses were triggered, telling me that he had some problems on his mind. I said, “ Jesus loves you, so everything is going to be alright.” His face lit up and he said, “ Brother, you know you are right, and I really needed to be reminded of that this morning.”

His name was Harry and he and I immediately became friends. We are about the same age and have a lot in common. Both of us love Jesus, our families and America. In our conversation, we talked about the craziness in the world today. We are both concerned about all the riots and the hysteria over the corona virus. This causes us both to worry about the world that our grandchildren will inherit. Thankfully, we both know that Jesus is in control.

Oh, by the way Harry’s skin is dark and my skin is light. But our different skin color does not matter to us. We became friends because of all we have in common. It is our common prayer that America would return to the God of our salvation and be healed.

In this world we live in, racism is a commodity of small minded and manipulative people. Many politicians, most of the news media and some so called preachers, exist only for the money they make by causing heartache and division. These evil and wicked people thrive most when good people suffer. They hate it when good men like Harry and I ignore our differences and come together over the things we have in common.

Hey, let’s turn this world around. Just turn off the news. Those talking heads on television will only tear us apart. Love God with all your heart and your world will be changed. Love your neighbor as you love yourself and you might change their world. Understand this, you cannot be reconciled with your fellow man until you are reconciled with God. I am paraphrasing Romans 10:12-13 when I say; “ There is no difference between Black and White, because the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:12-13

Let us all call on the name of the Lord and let the reconciliation begin.

Douglas & Deborah Huff

From Down Where the Pavement Ends

Great is Your Reward in Heaven

Blessed are the poor in spirit because you realize that God has chosen you to be rich in faith. Your poverty will be rewarded with the Kingdom of Heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn over their sinfulness because Godly sorrow brings repentance. Repentance leads to Salvation that leaves no regrets.

Blessed are the meek. Your gentle power comes from the knowledge that you can do anything through Christ who gives you strength.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness. You know that the righteousness of God is the only thing that will bring justice to this world. You have this promise, one day God will satisfy your hunger.

Blessed are the merciful. Your life is full of compassion, kindness and humility. You forgive as quickly and completely as Jesus forgave you. Because you show mercy, you will receive mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart. Your desire is to live a life free from sin. In order to serve God, You store His Word in your heart. Because of the purity of your heart, you will draw near to God and He will draw near to you.

Blessed are the peacemakers. You have let the peace of God rule in your heart so you will be known as a child of God.

You are blessed when you are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. This world is not your home. The people who are at home in this world will always hate God’s servants. In this world you will be abused and harassed. People will always report evil lies about you. However through it all you can find joy and great happiness because yours is the Kingdom of Heaven. You are truly blessed because great is your reward in Heaven.

Douglas Huff

From Down Where The Pavement Ends