Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I hope my mailman knew I was a Christian before I told him. He explained to me that he learns a lot about people through sorting and distributing their mail: what they read, where they shop, how they give. He knows when they receive late notices or divorce papers. He knows when their names change or when two people live in the same house with different names. He draws assumptions, sometimes inaccurately, but nevertheless he draws them. All around us, people are watching. The men who pick up our recycling know what we eat and what we drink. The meter readers know how much electricity and water we use. The man at the camera shop has seen my photos. The world does not always see my heart as God does, so may the satisfaction that I find in Him manifest itself in such a way that a watching world is compelled to ask, "Why do you have the hope that you have?"
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
My psychologist counseled. They suggested on the Today Show. My friend told me. Our pastor preached. The small group agreed. My feelings tell me. A book I read said. These are all openers to advice I've been given in times when I have sought spiritual help. They all came from Christians. I have come to look for certain criteria in my counselors. Do they spend time daily soaking in God's Word? Do they meditate on it and find it valuable enough to memorize? Do they point me to it and show me verses to support what they are saying? Do they spend time in prayer and do they pray with me? Do they love the Lord Jesus and does their life reflect it? Advice abounds; wise counsel is rare. "We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ..." (2 Corinthians 10:5)
Monday, December 8, 2008
Sitting in a doctor's office. Standing in line. Waiting. Creeping through a toll plaza. Calling customer service. Waiting. We can convince ourselves that we have a right to better service. We can convince ourselves that our frustration is warranted. Don't they know I have to get back to work? Is this the best they can do? Don't they realize I have better things to do with my time? As our minds whirl with thoughts like these, we are demanding that others conform to our expectations. Join me in waging war against the subtle sin of impatience. Fill your mind with His Word. Sing songs of praise to the Lord. Pray for the others in line or the one on the other end of the line. "Love is patient." (1 Corinthians 13:4)