Posts by Gene Longley

Posts by Gene Longley

FIND YOUR PLACE — PRESCHOOL, CHILDREN, YOUTH

So Many Reasons to Say No “I don’t have the patience to be around preschoolers!” “I’m not a teacher.  I could never come up with a bible lesson every week!” “I can’t relate to teenagers, I’m not trendy enough!” And there are many other thoughts as to why someone CAN’T be involved with Alsbury’s ministries to children (AKM), teens (ATM), or individuals with special needs (IDD). But there are more important questions to ask yourself that are a better indicator…

“I have to be part of that!”

True Story One of my favorite stories from past Vacation Bible Spectaculars involves a dad that came to see what his kids were up to at Alsbury. He didn’t have much experience with “church folks,” so he wasn’t sure what to expect. After walking into our worship center decorated to look like a swamp, he was a bit perplexed. When everything got going: He saw kids leading other kids in worship with some catchy songs. He watched two grown men…

Finding purpose among Crazy games and corn dogs

Last week I was reminded of how beautiful (and loud) it can be when God’s people work together to share his love with others. Love God/Love Others At Kidz-n-Play, over 100 kids spent part of their Spring Break playing crazy games, singing and dancing in worship, eating kid-friendly lunches, and being loved on by Americans and Europeans. People of all stages of life came together to meet a real need for families and build relationships with kids who might never…

More than the “Big smile” moment

Big smile moments Night to Shine is one of those nights when my worlds collide. Among the volunteers are faces I know from Alsbury, Burleson ISD, Holy Cross Christian Academy, Nazarene Christian Academy, Way FM, Burleson Police Department, Center for ASD, etc. People from all over our community come together at our church for one reason… to serve a group among us who are often forgotten, ignored, and dismissed. I see volunteers working hard with smiles on their faces because…

The Peace Jesus Brings

My Peaceful Place It’s quiet. The sun is coming up over the rolling hills. I’m alone with a cup of coffee. All I hear is the gentle wind making music through the wind chimes. The pressures and concerns of the day haven’t kicked in yet. Surrounded by cedars with hills in every direction, I can just be. When I think of peace, my mind takes me to that screened-in porch on Rock-N-Horse Farms in Festus, Missouri. When you think of…

Make Room for the Outsider

Going from Unsure to Belonging A few weeks ago, a little girl tentatively walked into the LAB. She held onto her mom, unsure she wanted to let her leave. In an effort to help her feel more comfortable, I introduced her to an older girl named Mady. By the end of the hour, I overheard that same shy little girl ask Mady if they could be friends. The response was an enthusiastic “Sure!” It was that easy. They had spent…

When Life Feels Like a Shipwreck

What do you think of when you hear the word “shipwreck?” You might think of an epic movie, or a campy TV show. When I get past the pop-culture references and really think about a shipwreck, tragedy, loss, and damage come to my mind. So why is our Vacation Bible Spectacular theme “Shipwrecked?” Our reality sometimes resembles a shipwreck. We experience tragedy, loss and damage on a frequent basis. It can be hard to remain hopeful in the midst of…

Keep Your Eye on the Ball

Back in the day, I was a catcher for my high school baseball team. During batting practice, one of my jobs was warming up the pitcher. There was no batter, so I often caught without my mask. One day, I learned how bad an idea that was. One of my teammates was being tried out as a pitcher for the first time. He threw a couple of pitches in the strike zone, then bounced one in front of the plate.…