I gave my 8 chickens a mobile home. It gives them a space to run around in, scratching and pecking, eating and dust bathing to their hearts’ content. They can be in the open air every day as I move them to a fresh new spot. The barn is reached from an inside ladder and it has food, water and nesting boxes for eggs plus perches for snuggling to sleep at night. They are safe from predators, from storms and they can find shade when the sunlight is intense. What more could they want?
I provide every need and I look out for their safety from hawks and coyotes and other predators. So why aren’t they content to stay within this sheltered environment?
I move the tractor daily in summer and one day a rebel hen decided to make a break for freedom. She slipped halfway under the edge and the wood frame pinned her to the ground as it rolled to a new location for the day. Injuries sustained were fatal. You might say the arrangement that would provide and protect for the chickens became the agent of judgment for rebelling.
Lesson? Why do we resist the One who made us, provides for us, protects us?
God is the One who knows us better than we know ourselves and loves us more than anyone has yet to love us. Why indeed.
In Dad’s grip, we are secure in our Father!
Many of the world’s best and most famous Christians came to discover a certain secret even after serving their Savior faithfully for years. Hudson Taylor, the brave soul who moved to China to trust God to take care of him while he risked his life to preach there and even to find his next meal, is a prime example. Others, household names among Christian churches and families, had the same experience as Hudson – they came to the end of themselves. Maybe you too have run out of gas trying to be a genuine Christian. Well, the secret has been revealed! Colossians says it was kept secret from prophets and priests and kings but has now been make known. Are you ready for this? . . . . the secret to living the Christian life is . . . . Christ in you! Hudson and others, including myself (perhaps YOU are next) finally get it: it is not you and me living for Christ but Him living His life in and through us! It is the new birth and the new spirit in us is His Spirit. Now we have the right to be His children, to have His genes, His life, His breath, His mind and His power. Sounds like hyperbole maybe but it is the good news, straight up. Hudson and others, including me, including maybe you too, have found what it means that His yoke is easy and His burden is light. It is because He lives it in and through us as we simply yield and get out of His way. Meditate on the message of Colossians, Romans and Galatians and you will see that I’m not making this up! The word is out; the secret has been revealed!
I learned half way back there in my life that self-confidence is an empty bucket with a hole in it.
The challenges of life or of even this next new year can be terrifying with uncertainty. Did you ever stop to think that without uncertainty, challenges and crises we would never be in a spot to enjoy hope or faith? Hope, if the object of it is seen, isn’t hope at all.
This is the only opportunity in your life, this present life- in which you can honor God by believing/trusting in Him for the courage to do things you’ve never done before. So, enjoy the ride!
I keep meditating on Romans 5 and 6.
Wow! The Law proved we are terminally doomed. God provided the antibiotic, no more than that He provided a heart and brain transplant . . . but more than that, He freed us from the Law since He satisfied its demands which were impossible for us and put us into a new covenant: GRACE! He now lives in us and we live In Him and we are already seated with Him in the heavenly realm, at the right hand of God with our savior, our leader, our shepherd, our Lord, our God, our FRIEND! WaHOO!!
Since a good number of people responded to Diagnosis: SIN last week, I thought I would go to the treatment plan next.
What we need to fix the terminal condition called SIN is an organ transplant. The HEART is what must be replaced and our loving Savior will give us His own to replace ours. The new version will interact will all our other organs, especially the MIND. As a counselor I know the importance of getting the mind, heart, emotions and will all in sync with Him as our lifesource. We can’t change our nature any more than an apple tree can decide it would like to produce coconuts.
As mentioned in the previous blog, we may reject the transplanted organ as foreign. To our peril! The new heart/mind energized by God Himself will adjust the whole system to become healthy if we yield to His masterful plans.
No waiting for the donor or even for an appointment. Walk-ins are welcome!
Now that’s an inviting title isn’t it?
Reading this morning in the New Testament book “Romans”, chapter 5, I thought of an analogy. Without the law, it says, sin is not taken into account. Yet, according to the context, people were dying – ALL PEOPLE – before the law came to identify the cause. Kind of like finding the germ or the gene that is so deadly that it kills the entire race of humankind. The Law is good in defining sin for what it is. It is there and it is killing us but now we see how sin shows up in our selfishness, lying, stealing, prejudice/hate, and lustful emotional pursuits of life and pleasure apart from our Creator.
So, we’re stricken with a terminal and debilitating disease. Now what? We have two remedies to consider. One is to vaccinate and prevent the spread of the disease of sin before it destroys our children by training them in the ways of the Lord. Second remedy will heal those who are nearly ruined by sin (not just actions but the independent from God attitude.) That remedy is like an antibiotic. The whole course of medication must be taken to clear out the disease or it can rebound and come back to get us. Another way God’s forgiveness and new birth gift of cleansing could fit our analogy is that we really need a transplant: a new heart, a transformed mind. What happens when one gets a transplant besides getting a new life to live? Well, the old organs don’t recognize it and try to reject it. That takes continual medication to hold back the natural rejection process.
There you have the definition and cure of sin and the difference between sin and the flesh (the tendency to reject God’s life in favor of continuing to run things our own way.) Like Cain, the first murderer, we must master sin which is waiting at our doorstep. We can’t do that in our own strength and the law was sent to help us see that.
Let the law expose the reality of your needy condition, accept the cure and stay in recovery. It’s not shaping ourselves up but humbly accepting the remedy and staying in vital connection with our Lifesource.
What other points do YOU see in this analogy?
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Hey! It IS winter you know, so how is it that a few days of cold has gotten OLD.
I think we need some snow to help us really get into winter. We’ve been spoiled!
So, cheer up; in just a couple of weeks the days will get longer again.
Spring is coming!
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