Saturday, March 21, 2009

I Don't Know!

No, I haven't become an agnostic! But I am compelled to write a brief note here concerning something that at one time in my life was absolutely earthshaking, & I'm not even sure that fully explains the importance it carried in my mind at that time. It was literally a matter of life & death to me. The issue I refer to is knowing the exact time that I was born again. There was a time in my young Christian life in which I had heard that unless a person knows the exact time he or she was saved, that it is very likely the person is not saved! For whatever reason, I uncritically accepted it at that time as truth & feverishly tried to delve into my past (what a waste of time!) to figure out the exact moment so I could have assurance! Talk about a total waste of time & energy, but I spent years, yes I said years, trying to do just that. It literally spent much of my spiritual as well as physical energy. Then, I heard of some very well-known Christians say that they could not point to an exact time, & for a brief moment I experienced a euphoric relief! But, whether it was ingrained habit, or just my rabid introspective nature, I went back to hunting down that elusive exact moment! Then not too long ago, I ran across the teaching ministry of a dear brother who is with the Lord now. His name is Chester, or as he was known, Chet, McCalley. Great Bible expositor. He founded & pastored a Bible Church in Kansas City for nearly or maybe it was over 40 years before his Homegoing. There is a great web site for his teachings in audio format, He made a statement that really hit home for me. In a lesson on some Bible truth, I forget what it was now, he made the off-hand statement that he had absolutely no idea when he was born again, & then he made an even more startling statement! He said he was very thankful that he did not know! I thought, "I sure would like to know why you are glad!" Then he told us! I hope any of you fellow strugglers who may be dealing with this will hear what he said next. His reasoning was that he thought if he did have an idea, he would make a "shrine" out of that time, & never move on with the Lord. That is not his exact words, but it is the jist of what he said. It reminds me of the bronze snake Moses had put on the pole for the bitten Israelites to look at in faith & be healed back in Numbers 21 that the people of Israel in later times had made an idol out of & worshipped it! Nehushtan good king Hezekiah called it & then summarily destroyed it! I am not sure but I do think I know my heart well enough that if I did know the exact time, I may almost worship it as well, & never really live in the present & look to the future while walking daily with Christ. I still don't do that anywhere near as much as I would like, but I am learning to trust God with the exact time & just rejoice in His salvation through Christ & hopefully tell as many about it as possible.

Before I end this post, may I say that if you do know the exact date & time, then praise the Lord! You have a great gift as well, & there is certainly nothing wrong with that! Every soul is unique & we have our own needs that God is certainly aware of & sensitive to. He knows how to get our attention & what we need. I just wanted to make that clear before I concluded.

OK, this short note turned into a long one, but I just wanted to share that in case anyone else may be going through something similar. If not, then I guess the Lord knew I just needed to get it off my chest! May the Lord bless you all!

Friday, March 6, 2009

The 1949 Ford

This post is obviously a little different than most for me. Actually it is a lot different. But, don't run off on me yet! I do plan to bring all this around to a spiritual concept in time. But for now consider this. General Motors & Chrysler are in dire straits financially, especially GM from what I read & hear. GM is said to be in its worst shape in 75 years...75 years! Part of the problem may very well be that these companies are just not producing automobiles that are worth what folk have to pay for them. Let's now go back to 1949. The year my Mom & Dad were married! (Obviously I don't remember it!) Ford was about to go bankrupt. Their post-WW2 cars & trucks (1946-1948) were pretty much the same-old, same-old & folk were just tired of them & weren't buying them. Then came the 1949 Ford. An all-new design, & one that I still say was way ahead of its time, just like Chuck Jones' animation in cartoons! All of a sudden, Ford was back in business! They were producing a car once again that people wanted. So, they sold like hotcakes. My point is that if GM is to survive, & I really would like for them to, my heart still skips a beat whenever I see a 1957 Bel-Air, they need to do the same thing Ford did in 1949, start making a product that folks want to buy once again, one that is at least in enough people's minds worth the purchase price.
Now, to move this up to a spiritual plane. Jesus said to let our light so shine that folk would see it & glorify our Father in Heaven (Mt.5:16). But before that He said we are the salt of the earth, & one thing salt does is to create thirst. Our lives ought to create a thirst in folks for the Living Water that we have & offer! We are not offering them a life of drudgery & pain, & that if they sweat & work hard enough, they might make it. We are offering them eternal life as a gift, bought & paid for by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely. Revelation 22:17!
We are offering the very Best in Heaven & earth, time & eternity! But, if we do not let Him shine through us, then as He said, we are like the salt that loses its saltness, it's only good to be thrown out & trampled on, like Jesus implied in John 15:6.
Oh well, this post may be a big disjointed mess, but it was like Kris Kringle in Miracle on 34th Street when young Marvin was being used by a shifty so-called psychiatrist for his selfish ends, & Kris said to Marvin, Something just popped into my head & I'm going to SAY it! May the Lord bless you all.