Just a few reflective personal thoughts as I was floating around on a houseboat on Lake Powell, Utah last week, with no phone, e-mail, or TV.
Recently a number of things have crossed my path in a variety of ways that hit my hot buttons; bottom line from my point of view: “the world is going nuts.” Just take a quick glance at Headline News.
When I scream at the TV set and threaten to throw a shoe through the screen my wife Nedra tells me that it’s time to unplug for a while and go on a news fast. By that I don’t want to withdraw in despair and become the proverbial ostrich and stick my head in the sand. After all in some way being salt & light in this world is part of the job of standing against the popular common current that is leading us to the edge. As Martin Luther once said, “Here I stand I can do no other!”
That should not be a self righteous posture but rather one that should take us to our knees.
As a media guy (among other things) and in real life, we need to be responsible to report what we see, but another part of that responsibility is to interpret as accurately as possible what is below the bottom line. Reporting symptoms are one thing, root causes and what to do about them is more to the point and in so doing, “Lay the axe to the root.” In other words, strike the root, kill the tree. We really do need an understanding of the temper of the times we live in, and then know the best course to take as individuals in our personal lives, our families and corporately as a people.
And talking about people…
A number of you folks who occasionally read these missives of mine are a real mixed bag. I also spend a lot of my time with people who do not share my beliefs or value system; but I do care about the personal relationships that we have developed over the years. We may not agree on a number of things, but I dropped my stones a long time ago since I am not without sin and have no license to be the leader of the stoning pack. I do, however, have a responsibility to lovingly share the truth, (make that TRUTH a Person, not an abstract philosophy) and then pray for each person and situation, and leave the legitimate seekers and the rest to God. I may plant, someone else may water but it is God who makes relationships grow.
And talking about relationships…
SYSTEMS VS. RELATIONSHIPS
An observation; the general populace looking in from the outside does not understand what this so called thing named Christianity is all about. The religious terminology, mixed beliefs, sniping, political posturing, hypocrisy (actors) and other antics in the Christian camp befuddles many. It just doesn’t appear to line up with what our Leader said we should be or practice. Breaking through that maze and getting down to the essence takes time, patience and real relationships; with people not a theology or a system. We who do profess to follow may be the only book or letter the questioners will ever read.
I’ll say this; I disconnected from the “Christian system” years ago when I made a commitment to follow Jesus, and as someone else once acknowledged, I am still “stumbling toward Bethlehem.”
For some of you, who are on a similar journey, please forgive me for not being a better example.
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