Tag Archives: fort worth

Aurora theater shooting reveals numbing reality

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By Charme Robarts
Special to Inside The Pew

Editor’s note: The views in this piece are of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Inside The Pew staff.

Reeling from shock and pain we rush to issues of justice and blame and gun control and violence in entertainment. The pain arouses our passion.

But we cannot rush past the grief.

Through our TV windows we see a rush of images. Lives snuffed out, agony creased faces of survivors, innocent, unknowing children hoisted on the shoulders of their dads attending the memorial gatherings. We mourn it all.

Down in the grief where we all try to breathe underwater, we may see in each other’s eyes questions of how and why things have gone so wrong.  Could the struggle for breath in these murky waters cause us to slow down, to think hard about how anyone of us could become so disaffected and isolated as to do unthinkable things?

Psychologists know that when we experience disappointments, rejection, and humiliation in our lives, we respond around what is called the Compass of Shame. These responses or reactions to the hurt we endure in life range from withdrawing and isolating to attacking others. We all make our way around this compass, most of us in fairly mild ways; but obviously some are extreme in their reactions. It is hard work to deal with our pain in healthy ways.

As we grieve this new tragedy in the city named for the bright mysteries that sometimes grace the sky, I hope we can reach for light and find ways to deal with hurt and disappointment in non violent ways. That is what we wish James Holmes had done.

Fort Worth resident Charme Robarts, a graduate of Abilene Christian University, is a caseworker with First Street Methodist Mission in Fort Worth.  Read more of Robarts’ writings on her blog, Speak What You Feel.

Building better relationships for stronger marriages

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By Donald Lee
Special to Inside The Pew

With the divorce rate – roughly 50 percent of marriages in the United States – continuing to threaten the family unit, we must do everything we can to reverse the abysmal pattern many homes are falling into.

The best way to combat this epidemic is to lay down the foundation for a wholesome home by sharing the biblically based, yet practical, principles that lead to changed attitudes toward self and relationships. And it is for this reason that I am teaming up with a fellow Christian author, Dr. Aimee (pronounced I-may) Colbert, to host the Christian Couples Conference in the Fort Worth area on July 7 at Grace Church, 4740 Western Center Blvd., in Haltom City. There’ll be two sessions, one from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and the other from 5 to 8 p.m.

The conference is free.

“The purpose of the conference is to help each individual, married or not, to increase his or her emotional intelligence and self-awareness,” said Colbert, an evangelist, faith-based counselor and author of the upcoming book, “Reality Check: Relationships.”

“I hope that attendees come to a better understanding of themselves, get answers and go forward with a passion to change and a new perspective on love,” Colbert said. “It’s not only for couples. It’s for couples and anyone seeking to be married some day.”

The idea is to reinforce the need for individuals to understand themselves, to have a healthy appreciation of their own self-worth and discern whether someone else has the wholesome spirit that is needed to best complement them. Strong relationships are built on wisdom and humility. And they thrive when those entering into them have genuine, sincere hearts rooted in the spirit of giving.

When someone approaches a relationship with the mindset of seeing what they can add to that relationship to help make the other person’s life easier, better, that produces a powerful connection, one that reflects the attributes of God. But when someone enters into relationships with a “gimme” attitude, always seeking to make withdrawals from the other person’s heart and rarely (if ever) making deposits, then that not only strains the relationship, but it gradually tears down the other person.

So, we want to stress that people have a health attitude toward themselves. A person can’t be sufficiently good to someone else if he (or she) has a negative view of himself (or herself).

Topics Colbert and I will cover at the conference include: “Twenty Questions You Must Ask Your Mate Before You Get Married”; “Twenty Signs That He/She is Not the One”; “Are You Addicted to Bad Relationships?”; and “Evaluating Your Expectations in Your Relationship,” just to name a few.

The conference will be recorded on CD and some video. The content will be available following the conference.

“The conference will be very eye-opening,” Colbert says. “Couples and singles should come prepared to learn. They should invite as many people as they possibly can, as we will be sharing information that they will probably never hear anywhere else. This will be a life-changing event in their lives.”

For more information about the free conference, including registration, visit http://www.christiancouplesconference.com.

Donald Lee is founder-pastor of Kingdom Living Christian Center in Dallas and co-author of “Married to Commitment,” the powerful Xulon Press-published book on relationships. To order “Married to Commitment” online, visit http://www.xulonpress.com. Follow Lee on Twitter at @donaldj_lee. Dr. Aimee Colbert also is on Twitter at @aimeetweets4u. The first chapter of Dr. Colbert’s book, “Reality Check,” already is available for download from the conference’s Web site. Also, call in to their Blogtalk radio show at 1 p.m. (Central Standard Time) every Saturday by calling (646) 652-4405. Lee’s and Colbert’s e-mail addresses are pastordonjlee@yahoo.com and aimee­_colbert@yahoo.com, respectively.

Pew devotional: You are valuable

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By Nick Perez
Inside The Pew

When we read the word of God we lose grasp of the idea that the Lord is speaking directly to us. The word of God is the will of God and it’s

Nick Perez

God’s heart poured out to us. The word shows us we are valuable to God. Our value to God goes beyond human understanding, for example; Psalm 8:5 says, “For you have made him a little lower than the angels, And you have crowned him with glory and honor.” The word “angels” in Hebrew is Elohim, meaning God. This alone shows how valuable we are to God. Another prime example is 2nd Samuel 14:14, “… yet God does not take away a life; but He devises means, so that His banished ones are not expelled from Him.” Here God shows us that our lives are so valuable to Him that even when we’ve departed from the Way, he devises a plan to bring us back. I’m sure that many of us remember that person who invited us to church or to some kind of fellowship event. So a word of encouragement is this: When somebody puts you down, or when you start feeling down about any situation life comes with; remember that your life is valuable to God, and nothing could ever

Massachusetts resident Nick Perez, 19, is on fire for Jesus and looking to spread His truth, the gospel. He is a product of grace, a servant and son, for His glory. Visit Perez’s blog at http://therootsministry.blogspot.com/.