Tuesday, 30 June 2009

the highest crime

God forbid, that we complicate, categorize, or compromise the beautiful simplicity of the most important command in all of Scriptures - to love the Lord Jesus (with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength!).

I plead guilty of disobedience, of neglect. I have committed the highest crime, in the highest degree. I have 'lost Jesus' in my Christian walk. But God is faithful in awakening me to the possibility of that paradox, and it is frightening, folks. To overlook Jesus (the Saviour, my Saviour) is something I'm afraid we all do more than we would like to think.

I now see my pride, and it is ugly (very ugly). I've been impressing myself lately with applying Biblical principles, good conversations, going to church, encouraging others, and even trying to share the Gospel. All of which, are (very) good things, if done because I know and love Jesus. Those things should follow naturally a love for Jesus, but never be done independently or primarily. And so, I'm disgusted to admit, that in it all, I have failed in what is most important- knowing Jesus.

Is He just an acquaintance? A 'go-to'? A refuge? A 'get-out-of-hell card'? Or is He our everything? Our most precious Jewel? Our most intimate friend? Our most beloved Father?

He keeps His promises (thank Him for that!). How about we start keeping His commandments?, starting with the first, "love Him".

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

what's it gonna be, folks?

You have two choices, ladies and gentlemen. Either you will be a thermometer or you will be a thermostat.
[A thermometer is an instrument for determining temperature. A thermostat is a device for regulating temperature.]

In other words,
(option one - thermometer)
- You are thrown to and fro in the ebb and flow of life. You let the ups and downs of life put you on a never-ending emotional roller coaster. You're happy one minute, upset the next. You allow circumstances to dictate your mood. You panic. You pout. You disregard His promises. You act as though you do not have a Heavenly Father.

or (option two - thermostat)
You cling to the One who is unchanging and let Him keep you still. Take that thought a step further, and you'll see that our attitude ought not to fluctuate because the good character of our God does not change (ever!). You let His Gospel govern your thoughts, and thus peace, hope, strength, and joy are all your's (all of the time) in Christ Jesus. You rest and rejoice, for your Heavenly Father knows what you need.

Remember, two choices. Let's be thermostats, steady and steadfast in our Lord!

Sunday, 21 June 2009

cracked pots and crackpots

D.L. Moody once said, "We can never be too small for God to use; only too big."

Ever noticed that God deliberately chooses the weak and the foolish to do something great for His name? God loves to use the nobody because, by doing so, He will get the greatest glory, [as He is due]. He is the only worthy Somebody.

He says, "This one I esteem: He who is humble and contrite (repentant) in spirit, and trembles at My Word."

It is good to know and feel our inadequacy, for it is true. We are incapable to even breath, if it were not for His life-giving grace. The beauty of it is though, that He will still glorify Himself by using us, as silly and stupid as we are. He uses cracked pots and crackpots.

Our limits do not limit God. (Hallelujah! for that.)

Saturday, 20 June 2009


Words are heirlooms. They are passed down from generation to generation, and are of more value than anything else. These days, I'm collecting old lyrics, old rhymes, old sayings, and old quotes.

To live for Christ,
you live again.
To live for self,
you live in vain.

[as Granda Gordon says]

And you know what I'm realizing? Time cannot age certain things.
Truth stays true.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

the immortal beetle (not for much longer)

So, in the office where I work, we have a problem with water beetles. The other day, one scurried across the carpet, and I near had a heart-attack. I mean these things are massive, the size of a blue whale (and I'm not even exaggerating!). Anyways, thanks to the brave Lisa, he was squashed immediately. (Serves him right, thinking he can share our office!) However, that wasn't the end of it. His brother decided to make an appearance yesterday, and what a fast little critter he was. After many savage attempts to exterminate him, we dubbed him the immortal beetle. He refused to die and scurried away behind the filing cabinets, where he still probably resides, sneering at his human hunters. But not for long, beetle you, not for long! Bug exterminators are on their way. Victory to the humans! and we will lived happily ever after.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

still strumming at seventy

Ever leave a c.d. in your car, so good, that you actually can't wait to drive so you can listen to it? Well, I do. And let me tell you, it's great incentive for the 30 minute commute to work during the ridiculously early hours of the morning. The c.d. (entitled: La Cruz) was given to me by an elderly woman from my church. Se llama, Lupe.

She is a dear woman, and perhaps the funniest old woman I have ever met. Oh, the laughs I've had because of her. But what I love most about Lupe is her passion. Nothing (and I mean nothing!) can stop Lupe from praising the Lord. And the best part is, she loves to praise Him with her guitar. (She has this great, little, old guitar from Mexico.) Still strumming at seventy. Now that's a testimony!!

Anyways, every Sunday, she always has a Spanish song printed out for me. But this past week, she greeted me with un regalito (little gift). And it is this regalito that keeps me singing all the way to work. Gracias Lupe.

(p.s. I love that we have a multilingual God!!)

Sunday, 14 June 2009

wisdom. laughter. memories.

I will never forget last night.

Listening about my grandparent’s lives. Hearing my granda’s impersonations. Listening to some of their favourite ‘numbers’ as they would call them. Hearing them sing along. Watching them waltz together. Learning a few steps myself.

They met at a postcard stand in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1957. She was seventeen. He was twenty-five. Still now, he says he married the ‘right wee girl’. I’ve never met two people still so in love. I near cried twice.

Memories are in the making.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

stupid little me

I wrote this a while ago and just came across it the other day.

"The other evening I was riding home after a heavy day's work. I felt very wearied, and sore depressed, when swiftly, and suddenly as a lightning flash, that text came to me, "My grace is sufficient for thee." I reached home and looked it up in the original, and at last it came to me in this way, "MY grace is sufficient for thee"; and I said, "I should think it is, Lord," and burst out laughing. I never fully understood what the holy laughter of Abraham was until then.

It seemed to make unbelief so absurd.

It was as though some little fish, being very thirsty, was troubled about drinking the river dry, and Father Thames said, "Drink away, little fish, my stream is sufficient for thee." Or, it seemed after the seven years of plenty, a mouse feared it might die of famine; and Joseph might say, "Cheer up, little mouse, my granaries are sufficient for thee." Again, I imagined a man away up yonder, in a lofty mountain, saying to himself, "I breathe so many cubic feet of air every year, I fear I shall exhaust the oxygen in the atmosphere," but the earth might say, "Breathe away, O man, and fill the lungs ever, my atmosphere is sufficient for thee." Oh, brethren, be great believers! Little faith will bring your souls to Heaven, but great faith will bring Heaven to your souls." --C. H. Spurgeon

I find myself at times, thinking and living like that little fish, that little mouse, and that man. drowning, starving, suffocating, all because I fail to believe, to trust, to rest .... in Him.

May it not be so when I consider His grandeur, vastness, depth, breadth, and width, His love, provision, and mercy.

A God, so high, so strong, so loving, so lovely - what have I to fear? What have I to want?
I never have, never do, and never will lack, because of Him.

His grace has brought me hitherto, helps me now, and will always continue. The times when I fret, are the times I have forgotten.

His grace is sufficient, and that is the story of my life.

God grant me a better memory.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

thank God for nothing

Thank God for nothing. Sounds heretical, right? Well, I assure you, it's not.

This past Sunday my dad spoke on Psalm 103. And that was his sermon title. I went back and forth between two plausible causes for such a title. Either it was a very misfortune typo, or it was yet another clever play on words. The latter proved true quick enough.

Let us not just thank God for everything, that He has given us in His grace; but also let us thank Him for what He doesn't give us, in His mercy.

"He forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
satisfies your desires with good things."
.... thank God for everything.

"He does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities."
.... thank God for nothing.

Saturday, 6 June 2009

confessions of a happy sheep

I love babysitting because it brings out the kid in me.

Tonight we made a fort, but not just any old regular fort. Noooo sir. We made a mansion-fort. Three rooms. Loads of pillows. Perfect roof. I mean, I don’t mean to brag or anything, but it was one heck of a fort!! But I must give credit where credit is due. Please put your hands together for Daniel, the mastermind behind the design, the emerging architect of this day. He made the blue-prints. (Official, I must say. He even used a blue sharpie.) And he even directed the construction. The fort lasted an hour. Success, ladies and gentlemen, success.

And then we had ice-cream, in the fort, of course. The kids say it tastes better that way.

Anyways, onto more important things… this week I pulled out some old sermon recordings of my dad’s. The ones I listened to were entitled: Confessions of a Happy Sheep, and were on Psalm 23:1. “The LORD is my Shepherd. I shall not want (for anything).” David here, when he penned those words, was looking back to his shepherd days and draws one of the most beautiful metaphors in.all.of.Scripture. What David was to his sheep (provider, protector, companion), he says that God has been to him infinity times more!!

David had what everybody wants, what everybody is searching for, what everybody would give everything for… and that is: sufficiency and security. David says, “I shall not want. And I will not fear,” *BECAUSE* “the LORD is my Shepherd.” A.W. Tozer put it well. “The man who has God for his treasure has all things in one. For having the Source of all things, he has in one – all satisfaction, all pleasure, all delight.”

Because God has always been to Himself what He needs Himself to be, is He not (more than) enough for us? Because He is self-sufficient, is He not, thus, (all) sufficient for us?

They “lacked nothing”. (Deuteronomy 2:7)
Neither will we, only if we fill the hole in our soul with the ‘fullness of God”.

The psalmist tells us –
For my weariness, I have green pastures.
For my anxieties, I have still waters.
For my faltering, I have restoration.
For my perplexity, I have guidance.
For my fear, I have comfort.
For my enemies, I have a table.
For my hurts, I have an anointing.
And for my end, I have the Father’s house. (What about that for a happy ending?)

Martin Luther once commented that “personal pronouns are the difference between true religion and false religion.” I am so glad that He is my Shepherd. I hope that He is your's.