Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Grace in Motion

When I graduated from high school, I was given a 40-day devotional by Cory Asbury that is titled Reckless Love. This book was given to me by Shannon Rose, our school library’s paraprofessional, spring musical vocal coach, and a dear friend. As I’ve finally taken the time to dive into this powerful book, I came across a quote that really stood out to me. It made me stop reading to sit and ponder.


“...self-righteousness keeps us blinded to the beauty of grace in motion.”


Self-righteous is defined by Mirriam-Webster as, “having or characterized by a certainty, especially an unfounded one, that one is totally correct or morally superior.” If we become so focused on trying to earn the favor of God and others, we miss the beauty of the big picture. You see, the whole point of grace is that we don’t deserve it. Self-righteous people think that they have to earn everything they get, but this simply isn’t true. Grace comes in many forms, whether we earn it or not.

There’s a parable, or story, about a shepherd and his flock of one hundred sheep. Ninety-nine of those sheep are healthy and safe. However, there was one little sheep that was missing and in danger. The shepherd abandoned the ninety-nine to go and search for the one little sheep. Now you may be wondering, “Why would he leave the ninety-nine who were where they’re supposed to be and don’t need help for the one irresponsible sheep?” 

The little sheep knew he was in danger and he was crying out for the shepherd to rescue him. In all reality, the shepherd probably should’ve ignored the little sheep and focused on the ninety-nine. But the shepherd continued to search for the lost sheep until he was found. Those ninety-nine sheep were like self-righteous people that think they don’t need grace. They think they’re totally correct and perfect in everything that they do, so they miss out on the beauty of an overwhelming grace that leaves no one behind. 

Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable and ask for grace. Whether that’s an extension on a deadline, a second chance at a relationship, or simply asking for something without earning it, lean into vulnerability. When we finally let our guard down and stop viewing ourselves as righteous and self-sufficient, we see the true beauty of grace in motion. 


Humbled by His grace,

Evan Coblentz

State Treasurer


Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Stay Positive, Test Negative

Stay Positive, Test Negative

I would consider myself a big list guy. When I see a list, I'm intrigued to read it knowing that it won't be too much to read. At the same time, I know there's enough to keep me interested for a decent amount of time. So, I decided to make another list. A list of things that I can take away from the year 2020.


  1. Don't Forget Your Mask- I think this is one thing that everyone can relate to. I can't tell you how many times I started to walk into a store, gas station, or restaurant and then had to turn around and go back to my vehicle to get my mask. 

  2. Get Right With Jesus-  The excessive amount of time that we have spent inside is great for self-reflection and deep thinking. I was able to dig into my faith and get more of the Gospel. Although times seemed dark, my faith brought me light.

  3. Cows Are Still Great- 2020 may not have been that great,  but there’s still nothing wrong with some mighty fine bovine.

  4. Cherish Time With Friends And Family-  Nobody realized all the time that we spent with our friends and family could be taken from us overnight. It certainly taught me to cherish those moments.

  5. Don’t Forget Gold Bond- Almost as important as a mask, you can never go wrong with having some spare Gold Bond.

  6. Working Zoom Is Now Easier- Whether it was for class or for meetings, Zoom once seemed impossible, but now has become a common tool for most.

  7. Innovation Is Endless- The challenges brought to us by the past year were insane. This called for people to think outside the box and it was awesome to see. I have come to realize that with this type of thinking a lot of positive ideas, things, and lives are going to come out of this.

  8. 6 Feet Never Seemed So Far- I focus heavily on positivity, but sometimes you have to be real. I never realized that being less than I am tall away from someone could feel so far away until now.

  9. Stay Positive, Test Negative- Obviously 2020 seemed to be filled with more negativity than positivity which can really get to some people. It is important to focus on the positive things the year gave us and everything we have to look forward to.

  10. We Can Only Go Up From Here- By the end of 2021, we will all be reciting lyrics from Drake, “Started From The Bottom, Now We’re Here” because things can only get better from here.


Working on my next list,

Your Friend,

Loren Matlock