Saturday, August 11, 2012

Work While you Work . . . .

I set out this week to write about the new school year and how all our school books came in and we’re ready to begin. But, while working around the house this morning another thought struck me . . . as I reflect on the past year I am amazed by how much I’ve learned. Oh yes, my babies learned and learned and learned some more and it is awesome to watch those little sponges soak in everything this marvelous creation has to reveal to them, but truly I am amazed by what I learn as their teacher. 

Last Friday I scrubbed the house down well and we’ve managed to keep the chaos to a low roar so I didn’t think I needed to do the cleaning job I did last week. I thought, “Well, I’ll just wipe down a few things and be done.” And you know what I discovered? This little poem we learned in school last year (and that I quote to my babies probably too often) is correct about life in so many ways. 

                                Work while you work.
                                Play while you play;
                                This is the way to be happy each day.
                                All that you do, do with your might.
                                Things done by halves
                                Are never done right.

The best part is that if you just do the work, often the job is easier and takes less time. In my morning wipe down I realized that the “easy” cleaning wipes were causing me to work twice as hard as if I’d just cleaned the bathrooms the way I normally do.

The Preacher working very hard!
I suppose that, yes, I should know this life lesson. I suppose that I should have learned at least this easy one by now. But, no. I am finding that it’s only been in the last few years that I am really learning and growing and acting like the adult I’m supposed to be. Too much of my life I’ve spent playing . . . I’ve played because playing is more fun, because it’s what I wanted to do, and because I wanted to avoid work. But the truth is - work is the life, the real life in which we all want to live and find joy. We forget that it’s only when we’ve exhausted ourselves in work that true play and relaxation and refreshment can take place. Without the work all is hedonism and there is no joy in hedonism.

I am reminded that God, in his graciousness, has set work before us; to both empty and fill. There are few areas in life that bring more genuine satisfaction than a job well done. The Bible reminds us in 2 Thessalonians that if a man doesn’t work, then he shouldn’t eat, but also shows us again and again the precept that hard work is an acceptable gift to the Lord. I am thankful that my Heavenly Father has seen fit to teach me and given me a spirit of willingness to learn so I’ll not waste more years on seeking the futility that is pleasure for pleasure’s purpose. And next time I am tempted to take the easy route, I’ll remember the poem I taught my children, the one that is teaching my own spirit the importance of working well.


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Why I ate Chick-fil-A Today

The recent political and moral outcry over the Biblically sound words of Chick-fil-A president, Dan Cathey, has weighed heavily on my heart. As a Christian, I find that I am both encouraged and appalled by the responses from both ends of the spectrum. I feel that most professing Christ have missed an amazing opportunity to share the true gospel with a world absorbed completely in its own sin.

  Christians taking a stand on biblical marriage must do so on the strong foundation of scripture that demands purity and holiness in every aspect of sexual life – not just the area pertaining to same-sex acts. If you choose to stand for Biblical marriage then you are choosing to make a statement about the appointed place of divinely created sexual activity and the recognized responsibility that sexuality bears. The resounding call for recognition of biblical marriage is first and foremost a call to Christians, to those who actually claim to be followers of Christ, to flee sexual impurity and to conduct ourselves in a manner worthy  of the gospel of Christ. We cannot afford to adopt the “Que sera’ sera’” attitude that seems to be pervading the Facebook posts and blogs. We cannot say, “You’re free to sleep with whomever you want to as long as you don’t tell me I can’t say what I want.” That is utter foolishness and is certainly not what taking a Biblical stand on marriage means.

 I am saddened that many of you are angered more because your freedom of speech has been questioned rather than realizing that the true, effectual stand to be holy and righteous in ALL our actions has been woefully neglected by the church as a whole these last hundred years or more. Beloved ones, this is tragedy in its truest form. I see that many of you are willing to trade this opportunity to repent and scrub your lives clean of sexual immorality because you would rather “speak your mind” and have no one find fault with your personal actions. Why in the world are we acting as though an angry response to a Biblical stand is surprising? We should expect the world to have something unfriendly to say about righteousness. As Christians, persecution is our lot in life. Jesus himself reminded us that the world hated him and it will love us no more. (John 15:18&19 explains this explicitly.) I find that not only are we surprised by any amount of negativity (I’ll not call angry posts on Facebook persecution), but our response is little better. We want to whine and cry that our freedom to speak our minds is being squashed. Beware of believing your freedom to speak is more important than your freedom to be a slave to Christ and of not using this opportunity to become more like Him.
My dear family, let us not forget that it wasn’t so long ago that we were the ones practicing sexual misconduct and any number of depraved and vile acts. We were separated from God by our sin, but thanks be to God for the glorious life, death and resurrection of his son, Jesus, by which we are free from all practices that separate us from Him. Are you born homosexual? I believe it’s probable seeing that we are all born in sin and not one of us is righteous. I was probably born angry with a terrible temper. Oh yes, we all have our struggles, and most of us, if honest, will confess to having some kind of struggle with sexuality. Guess what? As children of the King we are all called to the same righteous and holy standard of purity, regardless of our sin of choice. This is glory of salvation through Jesus that, in-spite of our pasts and who we were born to be, in Him we are NEW CREATIONS and we are made Remarkably Whole.