Friday, June 27, 2008

You are not going to believe what I saw

If I told you that I saw a rhinoceros forced off the road two days ago by a caterpillar, I suspect you would either think I am writing this from Africa and that there are some monstrous caterpillars in Africa or that I am heavily medicated.
Actually neither is true but me seeing a rhino forced off the road by a caterpillar is true and it happened on the main highway that I drive on every day.

Here's what happened...I was driving behind this very large delivery truck when all of a sudden, it veered off the road onto the shoulder and slowed down considerably before returning completely back on the road. Then I saw what was happening, a very large truck designed for carrying massive heavy construction equipment (and was doing so) backed out of a construction site into the path of the large delivery truck causing it to leave the road and scaring me half to death (figure of speech of course).

Once the truck went off the road the construction truck pulled back in and let me pass on by.

When I got down the road a little bit, I started laughing out loud as I noticed the picture on the truck in front of me. It was a large Blue Rhinoceros and this was a Blue Rhino Propane Gas company delivery truck and maybe you've guessed it by now, but the piece of equipment on the other truck was a Caterpillar brand Excavator.

So, yes, I did see a rhino forced from the road by a caterpillar.

Two ways to go with this...
#1- There are days when we feel incredibly inaffective and inadaquate, like we have nothing to offer. Or that our course before us is too difficult or the wall is too high or the giant is too big... you get the idea... but with Christ in our lives we need to understand there is nothing he cannot handle. Paul says " I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me". Trust Him and lean on Him and when you feel like a caterpillar facing a Rhino,
let Jesus do the driving.

#2- This is a totally different perspective... Not everything is exactly as it seems. Yes I told the truth about what I saw, but the specifics of what I saw were only emblematic of what is real.
The world has a lot to say about religion and the bible and Christianity and eternity. Make sure that you are dealing with a real rhino and a real caterpillar before you accept whatever the world has to offer. Deal with what is real and you will be safe.

So, drive careful and keep your eyes open ... you never know what you are going to see.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Summer time and loving it

Today is the first day of summer.
Some of my best memories growing up were in the summer.
I remember going out in the morning, coming home for lunch, unless I had lunch at a friends house, then back out till supper and out again until dark. Army...cowboys and Indians...race car (do you remember ballons or playing cards in the spokes to sound like a motor)... swimming in the river or a sandpit (not a great idea there) delivering papers...cutting yards...reading comic books...summer camp.

Summer camp...we take our church youth to summer camp every year...but it's a little different from the camps I went to. Today our kids stay in college dorms or similar type housing and they have a power packed day. Live, loud and uplifting praise bands lead them in music...some high energy camp pastor comes out in shorts and flip flops and captures the campers attention with funny stories and optical illustrations, etc. One year I watched a guy blow up a cake with a fire cracker for his sermon illustration...hey, the kids payed attention. High tech games and group exercises, along with traditional stuff like softball & swimming are also utilized.

When I went to camp...canoing, swimming and softball and hiking were the extent of activities. At night we met around a camp fire and some local pastor would show up in his black dress pants and white dress shirt and skinny black tie (90 degrees out side) and after somebody played kumbaya on the guitar a few times, the "camp" preacher preached his sermon. Things have changed.

However, what hasn't changed is the life-changing message of the gospel. And one night, when that fully dressed preacher shared that story almost 40 years ago by that camp fire, my heart was stirred and I responded to his invitation and it was then that I asked Jesus Christ to come into my heart.

My life has never been the same.

Man I love summer. Still making good memories.

Have a safe and happy and fruitful summer.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Where There Is Smoke ...

Driving in to work this morning I was once again met with thick smoke in the air. This situation motivated us on Monday to purchase several Oreck air purifiers and we have upped our contribution to sinus & allergy medicines. Our lives have been altered by the smoke in the air. I don't know who gets credit for the statement, but someone has said "Where there is smoke, there is fire". True enough there is fire, in fact at least two serious wildfires burning near us. One is south of us and the other is north/northwest. And though both are serveral miles away they are changing some of the ways we are doing things. For example, I am staying inside more and have even resorted to wearing a mask while watching TV one night.

Isaiah speaks of a fire inside of himself. We often talk about being on fire or having a fire lit under ourselves. The facts I mentioned in the previous paragraph is truth in our spiritual lives. If we are on fire there will be evidence (smoke) and if there is evidence, it will affect those around us. I must ask me a I on fire and is my fire big enough to produce a significant amount of smoke and is my smoke reaching hearts and lives around me?

I do hope the wildfires are soon doused and that I will be less affected by them but I also hope the fire in me is never quenched and that I will have an affect on those around me in a positive and life altering way.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Short Timers

My wife told me about a boy (man) that grew up in her community who simply passed away with a massive heart attack yesterday. Not yet 50 years old. Her brother spoke to the man Thursday in his sign of the end coming that was apparant.

NBC's news reports have been dominated this week by Tim Russert's death at the age of 58, also of a heart attack.

Last night at 10:00 I received a call about a 13 year old boy who had suffered a head injury in a skateboard accident and possibly not going to make it ... the good news now is that he is going to be okay... and this morning I was listening to a sermon where the preacher described his day on August 16th of last year when his young wife was killed in an automobile accident.

Those are depressing stories but they serve as reminders of what James says in James 4:14 "For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time, and then vanishs away."

Our time on earth is short for sure even if we have 80 years as in comparison to eternity.

Hebrews goes on to say that " It is appointed to men once to die but after this the judgement".

So what we believe when we are alive will determine where we end up after we are dead.

We are short timers, my prayer is that you have come to a place where you have received Jesus into your life and have surrendered yourself to him.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

First Blog

Well, here is yet another first of something I never expected to do. Having heard of blogs, bloggers and blogging I was a little afraid of getting blogged down with all of it...SORRY...

I'm not sure I understand the whole purpose of somebody actually going to read what I write and will it add any appreciable value to their life? Well, perhaps not but maybe we can at least provide a smile or two along the way.

So...I attended the Southern Baptist Convention in Indianapolis last week .There wasn't a great deal of controversial action and I don't think we succeeded in offending a whole lot of people this year. Except for the attempt to support an amendment that would call for the removal of all Southern Baptist children from California public Schools. I understood the heart of the man who made the motion but wholeheartedly disagreed with it as the proper action to take. I know it is an emotional issue and will only be so more and more as the days go by, but removing the influence of Christian children (light) from a world that needs Jesus (darkness) is not the answer in my opinion. The motion was soundly defeated.
Well, I hope you will appreciate the historic value of this special first BLOG!