You know the story of the guest pastor who visited a church in shabby attire, unshaven and maybe even unshowered? Churchgoers sidestepped him and certainly didn’t seat him at the front, so imagine their surprise/shame when he got up to give the sermon.
It’s a good example of the authenticity of our Love, and while Love shouldn’t be swayed by sight, any flesh and blood wrapped in labels like “Refugee” -“Homeless” -“Foreigner” -“Moocher” -“Homosexual” -“Annoying Friend,” will test our hearts.
This starts with a snail named Turbo who dreams of speed. When Turbo almost drowns in an engine filled with nitrous oxide–and my kids and I started getting nervous– I started to wonder: isn’t that stuff laughing gas??
SNL skits and Steve Martin flashed before me, and I checked wiki to confirm: sure enough, the stuff that numbs pain and causes giggles is the same stuff that turns car horsepower into unicorn power.
I don’t believe in coincidences so what’s God trying to say??
Speed and Joy can go together like Slow and Annoyed, but maybe the connection runs deeper. What if Fun, Laughter, and Joy are some of our Greatest Weapons in life?
You’re probably not expecting any love letters from Democrats, but this will come darn close. Sir, you didn’t have my vote but you do have my heart, and I kindly ask to share 3 things with you.
Firstly, you’re a Winner–not because of any item you own or title you possess, but because you Exist. That’s a 10 to the 2,685,000th power odd, and for reference the number of atoms in the visible universe is just ~10 to the 80th power.
Secondly, I’ve seen you say and do things that shame and hurt others, and from my heart I wonder: Who hurt you? What bullies did you face, or who dared lay hands on you? Only you know your story of survival and truly none of us is a stranger to pain, rejection, or simply being misunderstood. But resilience is in our DNA and we find ways to cope–anything from food or drugs, to money or sex, shopping, TV-watching, any thing. And every thing, from our own self-doubts to our possessions or fixes, seeks to enslave us.
The garden of Eden taught some hard and sad lessons, including that we wouldn’t trust God without testing Him first. Parents warn their kids not to touch a hot pan, but don’t they/we ultimately want to know for ourselves?
Bieber had it right:
“I got to learn things, learn them the hard way.
Gotta see what it feels like, no matter what they say..”
(“Ill show you” Justin Bieber, Purpose album)
(Sure, some lessons we never want to learn firsthand, but maybe that’s because we saw the result in the life of another…) Continue reading →
This post is part of the #GodsOneLines series–breaking hate and/or shame caused by people wielding bible verses. Instead I want to use single bible verses or events to encourage and reveal God’s Heart if possible.
This story starts with Tears– mine as I write, and Heaven’s one fateful day.
It starts with the return of Jews from Babylonian exile. Their repeated offenses, including refusing to set servants free, caught up with them despite divine warnings. Sure, they listened for a time, but soon after changed their minds, re-taking men, women and children into captivity (sounds like the Moses story with Pharaoh, right?)
Imagine with me. You have all the power in the world and want to showcase it. What would you do first? I asked this to a group of kids and their answers ranged from world peace and feeding everyone, to jumping out of a plane with no parachute, or bringing a loved one back from the dead.
How about you? Would you rescue someone? Is there a moment in time you would change?
Jesus, the reported “son of God” faced the same question. He also faced the hatred of God-fearing/revering religious leaders (Pharisees) who considered the “son of God” stuff blasphemy. After all, if you’re the son of God, you yourself must be “God” and thus all powerful (amongst other things). (And now we can all call ourselves sons and daughters of God..).
Whether you’re a Christian or a Christian from the “synagogue of Satan” (Revelation 3:9), don’t worry: there’s love here. Sorry to be blunt but with so many “Christians” holding bibles and speaking/doing hate, people need clarity. Luckily Love is the litmus test (1 Cor 13) and “a tree is known by its fruit” (Luke 6:44).
If your fruits are primarily outward like church attendance, wearing crosses, even big Bible knowledge, look out! It’s possible to be crazy about God, the Bible, and still miss His Heart–I’ve been there. Christians can even make God an idol (been there too, Ouch).
Whatever your identity, I’m writing this with a motivation to help protect, especially children, if things go Havoc on earth. America may be center stage for the only war that’s ever truly rumbled on earth: Love vs. Hate.