Friday, March 28, 2008
Christian pastors often face a similarly futile chore. Everyone who has spent much time in church knows what it is like to deal with brethren who are wholly sanctified, and proud of it. In fact, they can't stand brethren who don't have perfect love.
Mere mortals believe that no one this side of heaven is perfect. But what do they know? The really mature saints have already put in their time doing the "grunt" work of lay ministry, so it's about time they were in charge ... as in accountable to no one.
Something is obviously wrong with that attitude, unless you're the one holding it. God has called countless young--and not-so young--pastors into His service as under-shepherds. His commission on these servants should be fairly simple: guard the flock from Satan's attack, and guide them into godliness. Simple, right? It's simple until they encounter brethren who are already godly, and have no use for any suggestion otherwise. If only they knew who they were.
It's often been said, "I is in the center of sIn." We know that's right, especially when applying it to those who need to hear it. You know who I'm talking about--them. The problem is, everyone who applies hard preaching to anyone but themselves isn't listening very closely. Whether speaking through His word, or through His man's preaching, God never speaks to others. So if any of the saints listens to preaching with one finger mentally pointed at someone else, he would do well to notice how many fingers are pointed back at himself.
Let God take care of them, and help keep the preacher's boots dry by minding your own sIn.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
My heart broke, today, for a young woman in Southeastern Australia whose beloved husband was jerked out of this life in a freak(some would say freaking) boating accident. Somehow, she pulled herself together enough to report the tragedy in her blog, South East Country Wife. I appreciate Bonnie Calhoun's notice in her e-mailed newsletter from the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
They love the evening, dining after hours, procreating with anyone who'll give 'em a tumble. "Sleep all day, play all night," that's their motto.
Las cucarachas never sweat the consequences; they don't sweat at all. As long as their egg sacks survive to spread their posterity, they're happy ... uh ... campers? These dark-populating insects scamper about obeying nature without question--until the light is switched on. Then, allowing just a few seconds of startled stillness, they scurry to the nearest dark haven to continue their instinct-ruled lives.
One might expect the race of highly evolved, two-legged night crawlers to follow a more enlightened path. As with their six-legged comrades, however, these human denizens of the night have a two-fold motive: First, evade the light. And second, leave their filthy imprint on an otherwise clean world.
Most two-legged residents of moderate climes routinely call pest-control when they detect an insect infestation. But they would balk at the idea of exterminating the purportedly human, night crawling, instinct-driven pests. In fact, only those people whose human sensibilities are similarly jaded would entertain such extreme measures
Human to a Fault
"If the animal is classified homo sapiens, it is human!" chafe the true egalitarians. Although such assertions are technically true, this breed of instinct-ruled pests is nothing like it was created to be, nor is it anything like it could be once again.
Rather than exterminating the pests--who would be left to exterminate the exterminators?--the only viable option is to exterminate the darkness they require. This is a job for none other than, Su-per Light.
Faster than mere physical light, more powerful than a universe of super novas, able to defeat evil wherever it lurks, Elohim came to earth as the common son of a carpenter. After going about the land healing the desperately ill, raising the dead and feeding the hungry, he single-handedly confronted the hypocritical religionists who demanded that he die.
But die he did! And just when the authorities felt safe in exalting over their enemy's defeat, he defeated death and depravity by rising from the grave, restoring the eternal life that originally made humanity unique. Instinct yielded to wisdom. Darkness yielded to the Light, and the two-legged denizens of the night went scurrying.
Infernal Prison vs. Eternal Refuge
There are, however, pockets of darkness left to attract the pests, furnished complete with the most delicious pest-bate. The master exterminator saw to that. And the instinct-driven pests stand in line to gobble down the slow death it conceals. Tragic, isn't it, that those mindless creatures of instinct swallow the bate so easily? They don't have to. Though it goes against their nature, they can seek out the Light of destiny. And finding the Light, they can accept the rebirth freely given them by the Light of the world.
And how does one find the Light? Though it's not easy, it is infinitely simple. The Bible says, "If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord, and Believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved."
To Know Him is to Love Him
Jesus doesn't appeal to everyone, but only those who tirelessly seek the true Light. He doesn't come to just anyone, only those who want him with their whole heart. And while he loves his creation enough to die for us, only those who realize and acknowledge that love are able to love him enough to obey him.
That simple beginning takes a whole lifetime to complete. And after completing a life of loving the light, he draws us to him for an eternity of unimaginable joy.