Broken Down vs. What We Could Be

Have you ever felt empty? run down? plumb worn out?

This abandoned house reminds me that on our own, we sometimes don’t take care of ourselves the way we should.  We might neglect maintenance type things and then suddenly are are a broken down wreck of our former selves.

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Consider the words of Paul to the Corinthians:

“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?  You are not your own, for you were bought with a price.  So glorify God in your body.”

– 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Remember the precious gift that you are are.  The price that was paid to save you from sin.  Ask the Holy Spirit to guide and direct your choices, today and always.

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Strength When We are Weak

At the beach last year, we hoped in a van to tour the area.  On our way, we came across a herd of free range cattle.  I thought it was hilarious that this little guy was having a stand off with the van.

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He didn’t seem at all fearful about the risks of standing in the road with oncoming traffic.  It seemed crazy to me.

The same could be said of the Christian life.  I often see people that should be cowering in a corner with all the challenges they are facing.

And yet, like this calf, they are standing tall in the face of danger.  Amazingly enough they are trusting in the One that holds their future in the palm of His hand.

“I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” – Philippians 4:13

Let Your Light Shine

We see evidence of recycling and repurposing things every day.  There are many people driving around these vehicles collecting all manner of “trash”.  They sort and sell what they can to provide for their families.

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Recently I noticed a wall where the builder had creatively used broken glass to add protection at the top of a wall.

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Now bottles that weren’t broken would be sold back to a place that bottles drinks or possibly repurposed in a way that actually uses the bottle to hold something.  And yet in this application, the broken bottle gets a new life, a purpose beyond what the bottle maker may have imagined.

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Not so with our creator, He created us with a purpose in mind.  Sometimes with free will we head off in a direction that isn’t within the will of our creator.  When that happens, we are often broken and humbled so that we can see the Father’s will for our lives.

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Our calling and purpose is to reflect the love of the Son…like the glass on the wall reflects the light of the sun.

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” – Matthew 5:16

Hanging in the sky….safe or scary?

Some days life putters along at a predictable pace.  For many of us, that means COFFEE, study, feeding humans, cleaning the kitchen, laundry (and more laundry), more feeding of humans.  For others it might be to grab a slice of toast & COFFEE as you run off to work, answer phone/email/directives from the boss, down a quick lunch (2 min vs. 1 hr), then back to work…you get the idea.

This routine is something that we find comfort in even if  we don’t enjoy what the routine is.  We know what to expect and we feel somewhat in control of our responses, if not our circumstances.

So imagine your surprise the day Jesus comes by and says, “Follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” (Matthew 4:19)  You check your Google calendar and realize….that’s not on MY agenda for today.  But guess what, God calls us all to share the good news of the Gospel.period.full stop.  Sometimes he will disrupt our comfortable routine in order to get us focused on doing so.

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When your routine is interrupted you might feel like this praying mantis on the 20th floor balcony railing.  You wake up and wonder: How did I get here? What am I supposed to do now?  I’m scared and unprepared for this circumstance…

And there you are, humbled and calling out for help.

In that moment of brokenness and vulnerability, we are finally willing to accept the help of a Father that loves us more than we can imagine.  It is at this point we are able to let the words seep into our souls…

“Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” -Matthew 11:29

My takeaway from the praying mantis is to stop, assess where I am from a different perspective (maybe a high view of the situation) and make sure that my words & actions are moving me in the direction of the Father.  Because there, in His loving arms, I can feel safe not scared.