I had the chance to go to Mount Magazine a few weeks ago while on a retreat. I sat on a ledge overlooking just an incredible view of the valley below and the Ouachita Mountains to the south. The wind was howling, but the sun was shining. I saw what I thought was an eagle soaring majestically at eye level coming down the ridge. My mind went to Isaiah 40:31, “Those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles…” Wow! I thought, what a neat God moment. I watched as he came near me with absolute grace. And then I realized it was a buzzard. He passed me and then circled. And he kept circling right above me...pretty soon four of his friends showed up. I did shower that week, so I was fairly certain it wasn’t me they were smelling. At least I hoped not.
This week marks 10 years. I hadn’t thought about that week for quite some time until this past weekend. It was a week that had it all. From the highs of a well-thought out plan and a ring, to a concert and a cruise ship; to the lows of a call from the captain and a funeral. It was certainly a week I won't soon forget...
One theme that runs throughout the scriptures is… “Trust Me.” That is our message from God. When I started flying lessons my instructor asked me, “Larry, do you trust me?” Of course I said yes. “But do you trust me enough to believe that there is no situation that you can get this aircraft into that I cannot get it out of?” I had to think on that a minute. I had to trust him enough to believe that he was not going to let anything bad happen.
One of the advantages of the division of time into cycles is that of enabling us to regard the commencement of each day as a time of new beginning. The opportunity of a fresh start is made available even to the most disheartened. Happy is the person who echoes the words of the Psalmist with the resolve to begin each day, “in the strength of the Lord.”
One of the major themes for me has been in regards to our “response” to God’s grace. This theme of response in regards to salvation has brought so much clarity for me, not only in how I think about the Christian life, but also in regards to the language that I am using when talking with others about salvation or in my teaching as well.
Humanity’s need and desire for trust is something that can be found in each of us. I know that I searched and searched for friends and people that I could trust, and seemingly always wound up disappointed and hurt by others who betrayed my trust.
My first job in high school was back in the warehouse at a local mercantile where I loaded feed, hay, and propane for the good folks of Maize, Kansas. The store was run by a husband and wife who had very different styles of leadership, especially in regards to discipline and resolving conflict. One day I made a mistake...
If you were to do an assessment on your own relationships, would you say this might be an area that needs some work in your own life?
We hear a lot today about regulations that control what we can or cannot do. We all have an independent spirit because of the freedoms we have enjoyed since the day of our independence as a nation.
Have you ever been to a concert or a sports arena where you could just feel the energy in the room? It’s the kind of spirit that gives you goosebumps, or “goosies” (as my wife calls them). I have always enjoyed the excitement and the passion of people that are keyed up when their favorite band or team is performing. Do you know the feeling I'm talking about?