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Showing posts from August, 2005

PLAGUES!!!

Now here’s a nice light topic for you. I am reading through Exodus and the story of the plagues that God sent on the Egyptians is just gross! Really…just picture an infestation of frogs, or all your water turning to blood, or flies covering every surface in your home. Ugh. Why would God send such disgusting torments on anyone? Because they were stubborn and hard-hearted.

In order to move something that is hard - like a large stone - you require forceful means, and if the rock is very large and resistant to your best efforts, you bring in explosives. However, if you are trying to move something soft – like a nest of birds - you will use care and delicacy in order to keep it intact. Hard things are treated totally different than soft things, and so it is with hearts. In this age of tolerance, people can get very upset by a God who presents himself as judgemental or disciplinary. But let us not forget, God IS the ultimate judge since he knows what is in our hearts, and in order to develop…

does this look like rescue to you?

I love this interpretation of Exodus 5:23 from The Message. Moses was expressing his annoyance at God for things getting worse instead of better, for not going exactly as he had envisioned in this rescue operation God sent him on. Well, the problem with us here-and-now, time-bound, earthy homo sapiens, is that we often assume that things are as they seem, that the situation is exactly as it appears, that ‘right now’ is an accurate picture of where things stand, but from my experience, that is seldom the case. The story is never finished, there are always new developments, and what initially appeared to be a setback very often turns out to be a catalytic factor in directing one to a better way.

I have sometimes been told by well-meaning Christians that what I am doing ‘looks’ like something that is associated with some form of ungodliness, at least in their mind, and I can tell they are uncomfortable with the whole thing. What the heck am I supposed to do with that skewed bit of informa…

Getting Younger

I received a letter from my mother this week and amidst all the newsy bits, she included this piece of wisdom:

“Some people are always excusing themselves for their looks, etc. So I said, ‘We are created by God, made in His image and then we look in the mirror and say, I don’t like it. Where does that come from?…’ The way I see it, the growing older, balding, greying, etc., it was all in God’s plan. Besides, the fountain of youth that we would all covet for our bodies is not as important as our character that we build by allowing the Holy Spirit to minister to us the Fruits of the Spirit.”

One of my main gripes about our current society is how we have made staying young more valuable than growing old. Now there are certain things that I deem are worth fighting against as we grow older, and they include the loss of such things as strength, vitality, flexibility, bone mass, general good health, a sense of adventure and a willingness to learn. But I will not fight against the maturin…

WALK

I heard a story the other day about a man, an evangelist, who wanted to make an impact in a certain country, but he had no contacts in this land and therefore, no opportunities to do anything there. So what he felt he should do was visit the place every year and walk around - nothing earth-shattering happened, he just walked around. For five years he made periodic visits to the country and walked and walked and walked. During the sixth year, on one of his visits, he met a person who introduced him to someone else and this contact gave him an invitation to work with and speak to the people in this country and thus the door opened to doing the very thing he had envisioned all those years.

I found this story strangely encouraging, because most of my life seems to be spent walking around. I would love to be thrust from one thrilling adventure to another, leap from one success story to the next, have one vision after another fulfilled, but alas, many of my days are spent plodding along. One…

a.s.k.

I don’t like asking for things. People say men don’t like asking for directions. I don’t either, and I am not a man. I would much rather figure things out for myself, complete a project knowing that I did it myself, or prove that I can learn something new or do something I never did before by not giving up, or at least not asking someone else to assist me. There is some merit to this dogged determination, but most days I would have to say I probably don’t like giving someone any power over me: the power to say NO and thereby reject me or some part of my life by refusing my request, the power to take part of the credit and satisfaction for something I might have accomplished on my own. And most of all, I don’t like to be needy, weak, or helpless in some way; it makes me feel stupid.

This means that I also ask God for very little, at least specifically. I ask for great and vague things such as wisdom, truth, courage, strength, protection, direction, love, purity, forgiveness…you get the …