In Featured, Pastor Paul's Blog

By Pastor Paul Gauche

Today’s Word: ‘world’ as in… “There’s a big world out there. Don’t miss it.” So said Gene Gauche.

From the first third of Gene’s life, which included a magical childhood in Lisbon, North Dakota, through the second third of his life, which included important callings as a husband, dad, and Navy pilot, to the third third of his life, which included travel, friends, a faith community, at least one hole-in-one, a lake home, grandkids, great grandkids and his last two and a half years with us in Burnsville, Gene’s mantra was clear: “There’s a big world out there. Don’t miss it!”

He didn’t.

Reflecting on his “there’s-a-big-world-out-there-don’t-miss-it” life, it wasn’t the stories of the places in the world that he had been that were so captivating. Rather, it was learning about the people he met and the enduring friendships he made that added a sense of thriving to his life.

This is instructive. What if we anticipated our interactions with others today as opportunities to establish and nurture authentic friendships? What would you have to give up, set aside, or rearrange to do that? What would you lose? What would you gain?

Specifically, how would a more generous worldview that includes those we don’t know, those whose belief systems differ from ours, change what happens down the block or in the Middle East?

When I think about thriving as generous people by seeking lavish interactions with “the world,” it makes it so much more human to be reminded that you can haul yourself from one time zone to another, drive from one climate to another, and even fly from one culture to another, and it will still always be about nurturing relationships with those with whom we share this place, this planet, this world, that helps all people everywhere thrive.

Thriving Reflections:

++ There’s a big world out there. How will you not miss it today?

++ What are the barriers you face when welcoming others?

++ What bridges into others’ lives have helped you most?

++ Who is responsible for writing your commentary on the world around you?



Paul Gauche is the Pastor of Life Transitions at Prince of Peace. His posts are part of his #100days50words project, where he blogs about a different word each week. You can follow his project on Instagram (@pgauche) or his blog, Thriving Rhythms.

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