Monday, August 20, 2007
I love change. I love how things are constantly moving - growing. I think change means growth, but there are times when change doesn't necesssarily mean growth. There are times when change happens because things refuse to grow and the only thing that can happen is something changes.
Think about a plant that hasn't been water. Before it dries up and dies, it changes. It goes from something green and full of life, into something brown and brittle. Before it becomes lifeless, it goes through stages of loss. First it begins to droop, then it becomes brittle and dry. Finally it begins to lose its color and dries up. These stages happen at different paces for different plants.
I think the same can be true for our spiritual lives as well. We all go through various stages in our lives. If we don't continue to grow, we continue to wilt. It's up to us to decide which way we change. It's all a matter of what we are watering our lives with. Just like a plant, we need to be feed by the right thing. If you try to water a plant with soda or OJ, you're going to soon realiize you're not helping the plant. Same goes for our lives, if we don't water our lives with the right things (reading the Bible, growing in the Word, good friends, etc), we will soon find ourselves beginning to wilt.
The choice always seems so simple, but too often we make it so difficult. Water makes plants grow, but it does us no good to know that if we don't apply it. In the same way, knowing what's right for us spiritually isn't enough to make us grow. We have to apply what we know.
Friday, August 10, 2007
Have you heard of the phrase "My life is an open book?" I've been thinking about that. What does that really mean?
I used to think it meant you were transparent. Meaning everything you did was always out and in the open, but now I am not so sure. Only beacause if you take a book and open it up, you only see two pages from the entire book. So how can two pages tell you everything about the book? You may be able to pick up on the current chapter that you're open to, but there is really no way to really know what's next, is there?
I think life's the same way. I believe we can choose to open up or be transparent in a particular season (or chapter) in our lives, but there really no way to know what's next. For me the phrase may allude more to the fact that our lives need to be like a book that no matter what season we are in, we remain transparent. Think about there are certain chapters in books that are very fun and easy to read, but then there are some that are so complicated and confusing (maybe like this blog for some ... lol) that you have to read over and over to try and make sense of it. Sometimes our lives can be just as confusing as those chapters.
Just to be as clear as "an open book," I guess what I'm saying is that no matter the season (or chapter) of life you are in do your best to live life in the open. No matter how complex, confusing or hurtful your season is there's probably someone out there waiting to hear (or read) about it.
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
My dog has had a spot on his paw for a couple of days now. He keeps licking it. My sister, who is a nurse, got me some bandages and spray to put on it, but the stuff will only work if he keeps it on - which he doesn't. My roommate called me yesterday to say the dog had torn the bandage off and shredded it into pieces. I wrapped his paw several times in one day, only to have him tear it off. So I had to resort to benedrayl. I had to knock him out to get him to leave the wound alone. He had no clue I was giving him pills to keep him from chewing off his bandage, he just knew he would be getting a peanut butter sandwich twice a day!
I began to think about that ... as the person applying the bandage, it was extremely frustrating that he wouldn't just leave the bandage and sore alone. But then I began to think about when I've had to wear a bandage or had a wound. It's not so easy to ignore then. I can kind of understand my dog's need to take the bandage off. About five years ago I had to have three serious surgeries in one year. I am not sure I have experienced as much pain as I did during that time, but the thing that sticks out in my mind the most about that time in my life wasn't just the pain. I also remember how I just wanted to be past it. I remember just wanting to take the annoying contraption, which was screwed into my bone, off. Somehow I thought if the contraption was gone, then the pain would go away. But somehow just like my dog, I often had to resort taking some pills to knock me out in order to forget about the pain.
What about you? Is your pain something you are constantly trying to digging at? Is God trying to heal it but you are too busy trying to tear the bandage off? Are you too busy focusing on your wound to know you're in the healing process? Or does God often have to knock you over the head to get you realize he will bring you through it?
Sunday, August 5, 2007
When you are born an American citizen, you sometimes tend to forget exactly what that means. There are certain rights and freedoms that are just a part of your life. You know that they came at the cost of many but you don’t always feel inspired to take advantage of them.
Recently I got to witness one of my closest friends take an oath of citizenship. Wow! What a truly amazing experience. It was very powerful and inspiring to hear all the opportunities and rights she instantly received. It kind of made me look at my citizenship differently. Before it was just a right I had, now it’s more of an opportunity for me to seek out. Somehow a right is more of known thing but an opportunity is more of something to you are challenged to take on.
It was awesome to hear a judge express verbal what it really means to be an American. He talked about how America is filled with a diverse group of people and how that’s what makes America unique and full of culture. I love people and not just who they are but who they can be. He talked about how each person has something of value to bring to America. And I began to think of what value I have to offer America. I think too often we wonder what America has to offer us, instead of what do we have to offer America.
Thursday, August 2, 2007
Have you ever set out to go somewhere, only to realize you are not so sure where you're headed? It happened to me yesterday. A trip that was supposed to take me a little over an hour ended up taking me what seemed like forever. Before I left, I printed out directions. There were step by step directions to get to my destinations, but as soon as I started out there was a detour. I'll admit I continued to follow the directions, even though there was a sign saying the road was closed ahead. (I know I was just asking to get lost.) I thought just maybe the detour didn't apply to me ( I know that's what I get for thinking.) Needless to say I finally got where I was going after spending a couple of hours just driving, praying Jesus had my wheel ( alittle something for all you Carrie Underwood fans ...lol).
The point I am trying to make it that in life how often does God give us detour signs and we just choose to ignore them. How often do we choose to look past them, assuming they may apply to thers but not us. I guess now I am going to try to pay alittle more attention to the obvious signs right in front of me.