Paying Attention…or Not

As I was out running errands today I pulled up to a red light along side an 18-wheeler. I glanced up at the cab as I came to a stop beside it and noticed the driver look down at me. I was listening to a CD that had just “cycled” around to the beginning and decided to change it while at the stop light. As I fished out the CD I wanted to listen to I noticed the truck roll forward slightly and stop. I continued to eject and then insert the CDs, not paying any attention really to any thing else. The semi-truck then revved up it’s engine and began to take off, so I did the same thing. But after moving about a car-length I realized the light was still red! I stopped quickly and glanced in my mirror to see the chucking driver: He has noticed I was not paying attention and waited on the opposite light and turn signal to turn green and then, when there was no oncoming traffic, acted like he was going through the light to kind of goad me out into an embarrassing but not dangerous situation.

After shaking off the ignorant thing I’d just done I thought how this reminds me of what the devil will do to us. We are most generally on the look out for, of aware of, the “roaring lion who seeks who he may destroy”. But it’s the laughing hyena, or more Scripturally correct the “wolf in sheeps clothing”, that can slip by us. Make no mistake, our’s is a cunning enemy and he will fly right under the radar, in a most unexpected manner, to make his attacks. We, therefore, have to always be vigilant in our walk in this life. Drawing close to our Lord, feasting on His Word, and being in regular fellowship with His children are the best way to do that. And the best defense against the overt and covert attacks we face.

Heard at Wal Mart

Philippians 2:2 Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, [being] of one accord, of one mind.

Today I had a few errands to run, including a trip to Wal Mart. To my pleasant surprise, shortly after entering the store I ran into three members of my church family. We had a very pleasant little conversation that included each of us making mention of our choir leader. For you that don’t know him, Bro. Buddy Merritt is one of the kindest, humblest folks I know and his love for our Lord just, well, radiates about him.

Anyway, the four of us agreed that more than once Buddy has stood and spoken almost verbatim what was on our own heart during his testamony. One of us even joked that it was kind of amazing how that could be; and that we ought to be more apt to get up and say what God has put on our heart as soon as He does so!

After leaving the store, on my way home in my truck I was thinking about our conversation and those thoughts led me to this conclusion: We are all different in how we express our love and our praise for God. But for four different people, five including Bro. Buddy, to get the same praise-filled thoughts, at times simultaneously, demonstrates that, even in our different ways and with our different “styles” of expression, we are truly in one mind and of one accord. Yes, I may say it differently than you, you may have more emotion than I, but we are still worshipping Him Who is worthy in “Spirit and truth”, just as He desires us to.

Frozen Solid

Hebrews 9:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

As most of you know I am disabled. I have one of those disabled-persons placards that hangs from my rear-view mirror so I can park in the handicapped parking spaces. Today I had a few errands to run. It was very cold out here today and I dreaded going out in it but I couldn’t avoid it so I bundled up and loaded myself into my truck. As I swung my cane inside to it’s “spot” between the center console and the passenger seat I accidentally hit the placard. It had been so cold out that the plastic placard had frozen and the impact of my cane against it made it break…into three pieces! Now that is pretty cold.

Have you ever met or know someone who’s heart is so cold and hard that you think there’s just almost no hope for them? I’m sure we all have. But I have some great news: The Gospel of Jesus Christ has the power to break and thaw the hardest, coldest heart on earth! God is still on His throne, the Lord still saves souls! As long as there is still a breath of life in a person the Gospel can penetrate, cutting asunder like a two-edged sword as the Bible says. Never give up on someone that hasn’t been receptive; the Lord may give you just the right word the next time you see him/her that will plant the seed that leads to the harvest.

It’s Got to be More

Psalm 42:1 As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.

I heard a portion of a song on the radio the other day. I don’t know who the artist was, the name of the song, or even the exact lyrics. But a portion of the chorus stuck with me.

The point of the song, as I understood it, was speaking about our Christian lives and what they should be like. It said something to the effect that “it’s got to be more like falling in love, not just something to believe in. More like giving my heart, not just following a cause”. (I’m sure the actual words were a bit different, but you get the general idea.)

I can’t help but to think how true this thought is. Our walk with Christ isn’t/should not be just about a cause or tradition, an idea or mere belief. No, our lives are anew in Christ Jesus. We are new creatures after our new birth. Our walk of faith is one of reality, of an intimate, personal nature with intimate, personal, Living Savior. Our souls should truly, as the psalmist wrote, pant and long for God’s presence and touch in our lives. If we are lacking that deep yearning we need to find an alter of prayer and stay there until He shows us why it is lacking. And then cry out to Him so as to set our relationship right with Him so we can re-kindle that passion. When it all boils down, this is all about love: Love for Christ, love for another.

God bless,

Greg

Amp’d Up and Ready to Go!

In a little while I’ll be leaving out for a local event (Amp’d for Christ).  It is a two-day event with praise and worship music, preaching, and much more, all aimed at the 30-ish and under crowd.  I am blessed to be a small part of this event; I’ll be manning an outreach table, witnessing and giving away tracts.  I have some 1500 neat (not your “ordinary” tract-stuff) tracts and would be ecstatic if I were to give them all out.  This is the first year for this event, with the hopes of it being an annual one.

Please remember this event and the outreach table in your prayers.  I know God will use it, us, and the materials as He sees fit.  But the intercession of the saints can only help the increase He will see.

Divine Touch

The following is a reply to one of last weeks devotions: the one about how it might be when Jesus returns. It came from a lady I’ve known since junior high and with her permission I share it with you:

“This message reminded me of the first time I really felt God was talking to me. About 6 or 7 years ago my dad was diagnosed with an aortic aneurysm that was so large it could burst at any time. The next morning I was driving to work and it was storming really bad. I was thinking about my dad and what if he died and how we would handle it. Needless to say I was crying as I was thinking. While stopped at a red-light, a sunbeam came out of the pitch black sky and shined right on my car. I had the most awesome feeling come all over my body. I looked up and said ” OK God, I know it’s in your hands and it will all work out” My dad later had surgery in Cleveland. He had a 15% chance to make it through the surgery and less than 5% chance of walking again. My dad walked out of that hospital after recovering from surgery!!!
Who says miracles don’t happen!!!! -Cathy”

Cathy says this event still gives her goose bumps whenever she thinks of it; I can understand that. To know that the Master Creator has just touched a person or part of your life out of His divine love is an awesome thing. What a wonderful God we serve!

Mark 10:27 And Jesus looking upon them saith, With men it is impossible, but not with God: for with God all things are possible.