Monday, June 29, 2009


"Your attitude should be the same that Christ Jesus had."
-Philippians 2:5

Surprise, surprise! When will the surprises end? Today the crew went to Logan International Airport to pick up Carly Decker and we did. Because of the traffic in Boston and because of being in downtown Boston we decided to take the subway system. Great idea and it worked well. At Logan International we waited and welcomed Carly when she arrived. Then the surprise . . . Katie, our granddaughter had come with Carly. Another reunion, another surprise! We have had a number of surprises and they have made the whole trip more special.
This was a tourist kind of day and we sure have done some tourist-ing. We did it the easy way too by purchasing tickets for Upper Deck Super Tours. All we did was get on board and someone else did all the driving, all the honking, all the parking, all the squeezing in and out of traffic, and and all the talking to us about Boston for the whole trip.
There is lots of history here. We visited John Hancock's grave, Paul Revere's grave, and the grave of Ben Franklin's parents. We saw Boston Commons, Chinatown, the Old State House, the Federal Reserve Building, Boston Harbor, Trinity Church, Old North Church, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, Longfellow Bridge, Bunker Hill Monument, the Theater District, and Dunkin Donuts on every corner. (Dunkin Donuts here is like Starbuck's in Seattle!) I suppose the place that meant the most to me was the old cemetery where we saw the graves of great revolutionaries who fearlessly put their lives on the line to make us free. For me, it was a short time of standing on hallowed ground. For these men I am grateful. These men thought of more than themselves when they did what they did.
We finished the day, the seven of us (Barry, Sarah, Katie, Carly, Jonathan, Margaret, and me), by going to supper at Legal Sea Foods. The food was great and we had a fun time. On the place mats in Legal Sea Foods I noticed the restaurant's pledge. It begins with "We Pledge:"
To inspect and prepare the freshest, highest quality fish and shellfish.
To assure you of a clean and comfortable environment.
To promote diversity and respect for all human differences.
To provide prompt, friendly, and courteous service by a knowledgeable and highly-trained staff.
To be sensitive to special dietary needs and provide a list of ingredients upon request.
To deliver all foods and beverages, prepared to guest satisfaction, in a timely and efficient manner.
To feature a wine list that represents the best overall value in America.
To respond in a rapid, sensitive and non-confrontational manner to requests that will enhance your dining experience.
To provide you with an experience that will encourage you to return.
The Pledge was then signed by the company president, Roger Berkowitz.
I thought about that pledge as I read it and wondered how many Christians have some sort of pledge, some purpose statement, or some Biblical guidelines by which to live. What about churches? Do churches have some list of standards by which to live and interact with those outside the church? What if our purpose was to provide encouragement, purpose, love, and hope to enhance the living experiences of people who live around us? Even other Christians need that!
Philippians 2:1-4 sure could be the foundation of a Pledge for believers.
We pledge:
To encourage you.
To comfort you.
To provide spiritual fellowship.
To be tender-hearted and sympathetic to you.
To agree wholeheartedly with you, loving you, with one heart and purpose.
To be generous with all we have and are.
To make you a priority.
To be humble servants with willing hearts.
To think of you as better than ourselves.
To be sincerely interested in you and what you are doing. We'll even listen more than we'll talk!
To provide you with an experience that will encourage you to return.
I know what you may be thinking. That all sounds good but how do you do it? The secret is in verse 5, "Your attitude should be the same that Christ Jesus had." That's it, that's the secret. Since attitude determines actions, if we change our attitudes that will change our actions. And, if our attitude becomes like that of the Lord Jesus the actions will do likewise. It's sure worth the try.
Someone once said:
"To live above with those we love, oh that will be glory.
To live here below with those we know, that's a different story!"
We all have folks in our lives who we have to love. We really don't want to love them, or maybe even like them but . . . if we adopt a pledge based on the attitude of Jesus, all that will change. Sure, we all have our list of hard-to-love-people, right? What if . . . we pledged? Is it worth the try? I believe it is.
And . . . when you think about it, you may be on somebody else's list.


  1. This is the place I want to go....this and Alaska. Maybe you can go there next. And in the meantime, I'll show my hubby this blog with all the revolutionary folks listed to convince him Boston is not just a hang-out for Liberals.

    Katie is so beautiful! Give her a hug for me. She has really grown up.

    Oh, by the way, no comments about the Steinway piano Margaret is playing, along with the marker about its maker??

  2. You have inspired me to make my own pledges, some guidelines, if you will, on how I will live my own life from now on. I would like to share a few with you:
    I pledge to support the family - Mom and Dad and Grandma...and Uncle Tom who drools on his pillow and has tourette's.

    I pledge to be at church every Sunday - unless there's a good game on.

    I pledge to fight for equality, equality for matter how stupid they are and no matter how much better I am than them.

    And people may think I'm crazy, but I pledge to fight off the aliens that plague America, particularly the mid-American region and regularly kidnap our citizens and fling their shoes over power lines and who also steal my luggage.

    I pledge to lead the way in demanding that every reality show be fought with guns.

    I pledge to do my best to help others see that President Obama can make this country what it once was - an arctic region covered in ice.

    Those are a few I can think of right off the bat. I will keep working on my list so I have focus to my life and bring order out of the chaos that others live in.

  3. Where is the photo of you writing the check to buy Margaret that fancy-smancy piano? Come on, after all these years, and after all of her navigation/event planning/restaurant & lodging selecting skills doesn't she DESERVE IT? I suppose you have already answered, "NO she is indeed NOT worth it" if you allowed her to walk out of that showroom broken-hearted. Tear, tear, sniffle, sniffle. Margaret, my heart aches for you and I feel your the time I wanted a G.I. Joe with Kung-fu grip and never got it. I trust you will not walk away as scarred as I was and that you don't grow up to shoot a President. If it makes you feel better, a legal way to vent is to go out and throw Barry's sneakers over power lines. It's NOT just for aliens anymore.

    Seriously, THANKS BURR for continuing to bless our hearts through these blogs. I hope you never get tired of it!! Glad Katie joined Carly. As Gomer Pyle would say, "Surprise, surprise, surprise!" Did Carly tell you we bought her dad's Ford Ranger for JM? He is ecstatic! Much love & prayers!