Your life has meaning …

BE SATISFIED WITH GOOD ENOUGH

You’ve heard this right? “You’re either green and growing or ripe and rotten.”

The choice is between fresh or moldy (as in spoiled).

When I’m ripe and rotten (self-satisfied e.g. with my Bible reading) I say things like:

  • “I know this already.”
  • “There’s nothing new here.”
  • “Ho-hum. Yawn. Zzzz.”
  • “Let’s get this over with.”

SETTLE FOR RIPE AND ROTTEN

I’ve done my duty. Check it off. One main reason I become ripe and rotten is because I settle for good enough and forget how nutritious fresh is. Sure in my better moments I realize I’m poisoning myself. But I fool myself into supposing “I can stomach this.” I barely notice the manna is rotting.

EAT BLAND AND TELL YOURSELF, “THIS AIN’T FRESH BUT IT AIN’T BAD.”

But what would happen if I pretended I’m reading these verses in the Bible fresh (for the first time)? What if I crawl inside the scene and make myself a part of it? What might come to pass? God’s Holy Spirit, like mama, tries to get me to quit eating junk and in its place eat healthy.

NEVER TRY ANYTHING DIFFERENT

In the beginning I resist. Why do I do that? Because that’s what mommas’ kids do. But what if I actually try something fresh? Will I maybe like it? Well I’ll never know if I refuse to put it in my mouth, chew it, and swallow it.

WAY OUT: DARE YOURSELF TO EAT FRESH

Digest this: I’m reading a series of six verses in my Bible (Mark 3) I’ve read before. I haven’t memorized all the words but I know this story almost like I know a 101 ways to use hamburger. Or so I think.

  • Jesus walks into the temple in Jerusalem.
  • Jesus notices a man with a withered hand.
  • Jesus is being set up.
  • Jesus’ critics hope to accuse him of a crime.
  • Jesus plays along.
  • Jesus taunts his critics.
  • Jesus’ critics are silent.
  • Jesus restores the man to health.
  • Jesus’ critics are ripe with rotten contempt.

YOU”LL MOVE FROM ROTTEN TO FRESH

So what’s fresh? Here are a few things I see, what do you see?

1)      Jesus intimidated his critics

2)      Jesus healed my withered hand

3)      Jesus transformed me forever

4)      Jesus desires to change the contempt of his critics.

IT’S A MINISTRY

Maybe it’s because it’s what I did for so many years but if you don’t know this let me say that there is another way that God has available to speak to you today: Christian music.

GOD USES PEOPLE

Let me give you a few examples of songs that speak to me:

  • Jeremy Camp “I Still Believe;”
  • Amy Grant “El Shaddai;” and
  • Avalon “Everything to Me.”

TO SPEAK

I’m always curious what the artist thought when they put their song together? What was going on in the background that made them say what they said?

Listen to Jeremy Camp “I Still Believe” because conflict happens but God hasn’t deserted you.

Or how about Amy Grant “El Shaddai?” God’s Holy Spirit can take your mind away from hopelessness and draw you into the calmness of worship.

I know what’s what so when I need a kick in the pants God might use Avalon’s “Everything to Me.”

WHAT YOU NEED TO HEAR

You can find your own songs but listen to some Christian music. It’s a way to find out for yourself that God’s alive and has something to say to you.

These three songs can be heard on http://www.youtube.com just search for the artist and title.

Have fun!

I’m Just Wondering

What kind of mind mixes time into eternity?

What kind of mind orders light out of darkness to craft day and night?

What kind of mind separates water from water to form space in-between?

What kind of mind fashions land and seas?

What kind of mind causes the land to erupt with all varieties of grasses and seed bearing plants and trees?

What kind of mind divides day and night with sun, moon and stars to regulate days, seasons and years?

What kind of mind supplies the waters and skies with life?

What kind of mind generates animals to fill the land?

Could it be the same mind that will transform believers in the blink of an eye?

Could it be the same mind that provides today’s breath of life?

Before I didn’t think I needed one.

Now I’m glad I have one.

Before I’d wander in the general direction I intended to go.

Now I don’t guess I just punch in the address and get there.

My GPS is a time saver.

Before I might glance at a map,

Now I don’t fool with anything accept my GPS.

My GPS is loaded with maps from Canada, Mexico and the USA.

My GPS gives directions and gets me where I need to go—the first time.

The Holy Spirit is a GPS (Global Positioning System).

Before I tended to think I didn’t need the Holy Spirit.

Now I follow God’s Holy Spirit (GHS) directions and GHS gets me from here to there.

Game Changer

How would you describe a game changer?

GAME CHANGER DEFINITION:

  • A Game Changer sometimes is underestimated, ignored and/or insulted. Still,
  • A Game Changer abandons what doesn’t work to do what does work.
  • A Game Changer lives on the cutting edge even when no one seems “to get” it.
  • A Game Changer repeatedly turns dreams into reality
  • A Game Changer causes surprise, excitement and occasionally shock.

GAME CHANGER QUOTATIONS:

  • “Forgive 70 x 7.”
  • “You feed them.”
  • “Faith exists beyond what you see or feel.”
  • “You must be born again.”
  • “Love one another it’ll prove you’re my follower.”

GAME CHANGER PRAYER:

[Father] you have given me some followers from this world, and I have shown them what you are like. They were yours, but you gave them to me, and they have obeyed you.  They know that you gave me everything I have. I told my followers what you told me, and they accepted it. They know that I came from you, and they believe that you are the one who sent me. I am praying for them, but not for those who belong to this world. My followers belong to you, and I am praying for them. All that I have is yours, and all that you have is mine, and they will bring glory to me. (Jesus from John 17: 6-10 CEV)

Locating the God Spot

IS THERE SUCH A THING?

Sitting on the bench waiting for the city bus Gary opened his newspaper.

Gary reads the printed news everyday.

Does anyone get their news this way anymore?

As if I was paying attention Gary asked, “Did you see this?”

“Uh what?”

SCIENTISTS THINK SO

He continued, “Scientists tested a theory that the brain has a location called a God Spot which makes people spiritual.” (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/religion/).

“Oh really.” Gary hooked my interest.

“Yeah, they didn’t find just one spot, they found that this God Spot comes from several areas of the brain.”

OTHERS THINK SO TOO

My mind went into motion. “Sure … yes … it’s more far-reaching than one location in the brain … that makes sense.”

Gary peeked over the top of his paper at me. “Oh …it does?”

“Of course, your article reminds me that God has planted something in our consciousness and heart that helps us identify right from wrong.” (Romans 2: 14, 15)

“And this is a God Spot?” Gary didn’t sound convinced.

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

“I think so. I mean the knowledge and law of God are alive in everyone—even though a person may hesitate to admit it.” (http://www.blueletterbible.org/faq/don_stewart/stewart.cfm?id=373)

Gary narrowed his eyes at me. “You agree with the scientists then?”

“Well I need to learn more but my head and my heart go along with the idea of a God Spot. What do you think?”

Getting an Education

It was a slow night at the radio station.

When he called I could hear from his voice that he intended to educate me.

I listened and took a sip of coffee.

“You know that God always answers prayer, right?”

“Okay.”

“Sometimes it’s ‘forget about it.’

Sometimes it’s ‘let me think about it’ and

Sometimes it’s ‘I’ll do it.’”

“Uh-huh, alright.” Pretty elementary so far.

“I like yes.

I have trouble with maybe and no.”

“Sure, that makes sense.” I drank a bigger swallow of coffee. I could tell I needed to stay alert.

“Even so the Lord always answers prayer.”

“Of course, so what’s your point?”

“I’m never in control of what God will do but I know I’ll get an answer.”

“And why, again, do you bother to pray?”

“I think it’s important that we keep talkin’.”