For several years, before my wife Donna and I had ever heard of Agape Asia, we inadvertently practiced what you could call sponsoring a child. How? We would often reach out to young adults (married or single) at church who were from away from home and family. We would have them in our home for meals and activities. There have been many of Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners that we had non-family visitors at our table. They became like our own sons and daughters.
I call it "My Wall of Fame" with apologies to any other Hall of Fame. To me, this isn't just any Hall of Fame, it's "my" Hall of Fame, er, I mean my WALL of Fame. I do realize I run the risk of failure to include everybody, but I wanted to add a photo of me with every one of my majors that I oversaw (advertising), and many other of the students that I hope to have made a profound impact on their life. I know they have made an impact on my life.
"And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”
II Corinthians 3:18
Change is sometimes very hard for me. For a guy who never likes to do something twice the same way -- I am often at odds with myself. On one hand I know what I like, and I know what works. But I get bored… easily, so I change.
Today, as I posted the grades for my last Chinese Communication Principles class, I paused for a moment of reflection… I took some time to thank God for allowing me 12 great years for the amazing opportunity to teach our Chinese students!
When I was a 20-year-old young man, young women my age were always on my mind. But they were not my priority in the fall of 1974. Instead, I needed to get off to good start in school, I had a scholarship campus job as the yearbook photographer that absolutely consumed me, and I was tired. I was tired, and the semester had just started!
Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place The Lord Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the Lord it will be provided.” Genesis 22:13-14
What did you want for Christmas when you were 11 years old? After all these years, I can’t really say I remember exactly what I wanted, but I know what I received was not something I had thought about. I was so surprised to see a gift-wrapped box under the Christmas tree that was much smaller than the thing I wanted. I thought maybe it was a part of something that would lead to a bigger prize in another room or outdoors, because that was sometimes what my parents did. Little did I know the contents in the box was actually the perfect gift for me. Inside the box was a camera. Not just any camera, but a Kodak Instamatic 100, cartridge-loading, flash-cube-popping camera. As I said, I was surprised, but not disappointed. The idea of a camera settled in quickly because of the intriguing possibilities of what I could do with it. I didn’t realize it then, but that gift would change my life!
I Thessalonians 2:8 - Having so fond an affection for you, I was well-pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become very dear to me.
Nie Xin walked into my ESL-level Principles of Communication classroom full of energy and began enthusiastic verbal activity with the other Chinese students. In other words, she was laughing and talking a lot. That was not normal for my new Chinese students. But it was a semester that was starting in January. Spring semesters were always a little different because most of the students had been at Harding for a semester and already knew each other.
Jesus increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and man. Luke 2:52
When people ask me what “I do?”, I like to tell them “I’m a professional story teller!” I speak. I write. I’m a blogger, photographer, audio-recorder, rinse and repeat. I’ve worked as a broadcast journalist, photojournalist, speech writer, and a copy writer.
When I first heard the name Kara Rogers, my youngest son Aaron, was calling home from college to say hello, but that was a guise for what he eventually got around to as the real reason he called. I suspected that something else was coming even though I did not know what that was.
In January of 2015 there was a gentle knock at my office door. My office door is almost always open, so before I turned around to see who wanted to see me I heard a soft female Chinese voice that said, “Hello, are you Professor Shaner?”
It was the summer of 2012. Everybody that loved me, gently but firmly said, “Steve you need to lose some weight!” And they were right. At 5’3” and 217 pounds I WAS overweight! I was endangering my health, and my future.
For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. -- II Corinthians 5:1 (NIV)
It was July 1, 2011. This day was three years in the making. Or was it 24 years in the making?
It was our final move day from 8123 Westview Lane. Donna and I had moved out slowly over the course of the last three years and that move had accelerated in the last three weeks. Now, the move was coming to an end.
Give to everyone what you owe them,... if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Romans 13:7
In 1967 I was 13 years old. I’m bad in math, but as I write this that makes me 63 now (well next month). That was the year I was in the eighth grade and I first walked into my English class at Middletown High School, in Middletown, Rhode Island. I met my English teacher for the first time. Her name was Dorothy Fisch, and she became a turning point in my life!
Steve Shaner, is a professional storyteller that delights in traveling to meet new and old friends. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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