Saturday, August 29, 2009

To think or not to think…

Romans 11:33…Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!

Indeed, God’s ways are beyond tracing out. I have tried, and continue to try tracing them out, and though I come up with a multitude of thoughts and angles, I’m never completely sure if any of them have merit. The question then becomes ‘is it worth attempting to understand’ the whys and wherefores of life and of God or would we be better served by just accepting whatever comes and not doing any probing for answers and/or understanding?

When you read the book of Job, I guess you could say that everyone was trying to put reason to circumstances. In the end, God basically said ‘just trust me’. Right?

I do think that the best case scenario would be that we ‘accept’ our circumstances gracefully and with humility, but it also seems appropriate that we should be introspective? How else might we uncover the error of our ways, if indeed whatever circumstances we find ourselves in are, in actuality, self-induced?

So, should we be looking for God behind the circumstances, or should we just be looking at ourselves? Or should we do both?

I suppose that would depend on the circumstances themselves. For example, if there is a tornado in your neighborhood and it misses many homes, but blows yours to smithereens? This would seem like a scenario that is completely beyond your control…you might even call it an ‘act of God’, therefore it could be a good time to apply ‘accept gracefully and humbly’. After all, what are the alternatives here? Blame yourself? Blame God? Blaming yourself, if you aren’t the responsible party, is self defeating…and blaming God is ALWAYS a bad idea. How do you benefit from that? Of course, if a tornado does blow your house to smithereens, you might want to at least ponder your relationship with God….just in case something is very askew.

On the other hand, suppose you are texting while driving and cause an accident? This would definitely be a time for introspection, and hopefully repentance and self improvement. After all, God didn’t cause the accident, you did. But what if you were in the other car and suffered severe injuries due to the negligence of the texting driver….what would your thinking be then?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Just a reminder…

Luke 21:6-36 "As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down." "Teacher," they asked, "when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are about to take place?" He replied: "Watch out that you are not deceived. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and, ‘The time is near.’ Do not follow them. When you hear of wars and revolutions, do not be frightened. These things must happen first, but the end will not come right away." Then he said to them: "Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful events and great signs from heaven. "But before all this, they will lay hands on you and persecute you. They will deliver you to synagogues and prisons, and you will be brought before kings and governors, and all on account of my name. This will result in your being witnesses to them. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict. You will be betrayed even by parents, brothers, relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death. All men will hate you because of me. But not a hair of your head will perish. By standing firm you will gain life.

"When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those in the city get out, and let those in the country not enter the city. For this is the time of punishment in fulfillment of all that has been written. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! There will be great distress in the land and wrath against this people. They will fall by the sword and will be taken as prisoners to all the nations. Jerusalem will be trampled on by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled. "There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near."

He told them this parable: "Look at the fig tree and all the trees. When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near. "I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away. "Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man."