Looking Forward to the Future

Looking Forward to the Future

Looking Forward to the Future

My entire Christian life has been one of looking forward to a future when somehow, I find peace on Earth. I’ve always had this expectation that somehow, I was going to arrive on some vague plateau of personal peace, harmony and perhaps a state of being that was more like coasting downhill on a bike as opposed to peddling hard uphill.

But alas. It has never gotten easier for me and I have never arrived into that state of “coasting”.

I had a recent epiphany about the probable reality of my life as a Christian.

Allow me to use a football analogy to explain a new understanding of what the Christian life may be like for most of us.

Let’s say I was born into a football family.

The exposure to all thing’s “football” is continually around me. My identity is wrapped up in football and my destiny is playing football.

And so, I play pee-wee football in elementary school running and bumping into the little guys and more than likely going in the wrong direction on the field. Zero maturity but an intro none the less.

Junior high football comes next; learning the rules, listening to the coaches and growing physically into a football body.

With high school football comes growingly difficult opponents, more disciplines, teamwork, and life new choices as I consider how my behavior will affect my ability to play ball.

I developed closer friendships with the other players as we work on our game and my listening to the coaches becomes indispensable for any success. I choose to reject passivity and anything that will negatively affect my game. Hard dedicated work brings success.

Then, moving up to college ball…

… brings a whole new set of challenges. What are you going to allow in your life? Which distractions will you reject? What is your commitment, your motivating goal?

College brings you into contact with the better players and opponents from high schools all around the country. Bigger and stronger and smarter guys who play to win. The hits are harder, the losses bitter but the perks grow.

You have a host of new tools at your disposal to become a better player. Great coaches, facilities, support and exposure on national television plus fans that have higher expectations and demands but winning brings that taste of glory.

Life choices get more and more focused and, in some ways, stricter and limited. Disciplines grow and actions such as getting drunk on Friday nights are no longer an option.

Every choice can have a positive or negative effect on your game and so you are willing to choose the better things.

On you go to play at the next level, pro football; greater challenges but greater rewards. Your opponents are giants, the best of the best and you absolutely developed your body and skills or get seriously injured. Every choice you make must consider if it will hinder or help you win.

How you think controls the rest of it so if you’re thinking or perspective is off or wrong, your game suffers.

Depending on how you may play…

… in the Super Bowl and win but that is your last game, your eternal exit game. No retirement. You die.

The point of this is to consider that the Christian life is a game in action from the beginning to end. Even if you think you have checked out you are still a football player in the field of life.

The opponents real and their hits painful. There is no retirement so stop looking for it.

Stay focused and motivated and trust your heavenly coach with the goal of winning for yourself and your team.

 

Looking Forward to the Future

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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Extraordinary God Engineered Encounter

Extraordinary God Engineered Encounter

Extraordinary God Engineered Encounter

Just had an extraordinary God engineered encounter with an older, clean cut, brilliant, intellectual Christian whose focus sees “every spot, wrinkle and blemish” in modern churches, all pastors, all Christians, and the whole educational system in America.

Apparently, the Reformation was the only valid Christian age. He sounded so much like me.

He likes the same old preachers from the 1800’s, etc.

He no longer attends any church and doesn’t disciple anyone (I doubt anyone would be worthy of his guidance).

Statement after statement he spouted and, not arrogantly, by the way. He said nothing I haven’t said or heard from some of my friends say multiple times.

He was older than me.

So many similarities and yet he is lonely, not knowing that he is a prisoner of his intellect and spiritual discernment.

He can’t accept the world as it is, thus without seeing it or knowing it, he is unable to save anyone drowning because the water is too polluted.

A divine appointment with the man whom I could easily evolve into if not for the grace of God.

Extraordinary God Engineered Encounter

I challenged him strongly, emphasizing that ultimately this is about an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, the Lover of our souls, and our Lord is the one who jumps in the dirty, polluted waters, over and over again to rescue the perishing.

Lesson; get over yourself and focus on loving Jesus and others.

Amazing that God would bring a different version of yourself to Starbucks for a personal lesson in wisdom.

 

Extraordinary God Engineered Encounter

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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God Is the Author of Creativity

God Is the Author of Creativity

God Is the Author of Creativity

Allow me to share an experience that I had on my way back from East Tennessee to Phoenix this summer.

I took the Southern route through Dallas, Texas and decided to stop at The Dallas Museum of Art. I wanted to make this more than just a 2000 mile “drive back” trip.

The museum had a special exhibit on “Dior, From Paris to The World”. Needless to say, nether words nor images can adequately capture the sheer beauty of the magnificent pieces they have on display.

73 years of genius from the Dior creators. This is high fashion as art.

God Is the Author of Creativity

So, as a Christian I get my clues about beauty, art or esthetic design from God Himself.

God Himself is infinitely beautiful, but also creates incomprehensible beauty.

He is the author of creativity.

Look at the splendor of His creation.

Even though sin entered the world and infected everything we see, we still get glimpses of the extraordinary beauty God designed into creation.

Beauty is for God’s glory and is good:  beauty in and of itself is not a bad thing. I believe Satan hates any beauty unless it is corrupted to only glorify man.

As we are created in His image, we have the gift to create and some of us can create quiet beautiful works of art.

We take the raw materials God created and recombine them into something unique and with talent, and sometimes by accident, we create something extraordinarily beautiful like the Dior show.

“Satan became so impressed with his own beauty, intelligence, power and position that he began to desire for himself the honor and glory that belonged to God alone”. – Ron Rhodes

God Is the Author of Creativity

“We have only seen a creation affected and corrupted by the fall”

God Is the Author of Creativity

 

I enjoyed this spectacular exhibit of the design and craftsmanship of thousands of people who worked for Dior. 

It took various crafts to bring about the vision of the Christian Dior designs.

This artwork is not like looking at a painting by a single artist. It’s seeing the humble seamstress who knows the fabric and how to sew the perfect seam. 

The worship of what man creates is vain and empty because the very ability to create is merely a gift from God. Paradoxically, I still enjoyed and was overwhelmed by an exhibit that for all purposes “glorifies man”.

I dare say it was all done for the glory of man and the creators. And that cast a bit of a stench, almost like a wet dog smell, on the whole thing.

It was not right.

If the loveliest High Creator of all color, material, movement, texture, shine, sparkle, even softness of material is neglected it is a waste!

I really enjoyed Dallas but there was a better show that God had planned for me to see in Midland, Texas.

There is a museum called the “Petroleum Museum” that was created by 5 of the bigger oill firms in the U.S. In terms of museums, this is a real gem.

No expense was spared. The exhibits are massive and 1st class. They cover the history of the petroleum industry and of course, all of its geology.

The best part for me was their mineral and gem displays procured, from underneath the earth. I had no idea they had such a world class exhibit of gems and minerals! 

I can’t say that minerals and gems are a hobby of mine, but as I began to move through this exhibit, I was suddenly overwhelmed at the overall excellence of the collection the scope, and extraordinary beauty of these samples.

God Is the Author of Creativity
God Is the Author of Creativity
God Is the Author of Creativity

God Is the Author of Creativity

 

Specimens ranged in size from an apple to a basketball. Every subsequent glass showcase became more and more beautiful to me; more exotic, more extravagant.

And then… Boom!

I realized that I was looking at a display of God’s design sense and handcrafted beauty; far more extraordinary than what man can create and to beat it all, hidden under the earth, in the dirt! HIDDEN!

My eyes and my soul filled with gratitude and praise for this display of our Heavenly Creator then I realized I seen the best of the best that man could design in Dallas at the Dior show then in the middle of nowhere the greater show, the greater display, of beauty was to be found. I knew that neither stop was an accident as God intended for me to see both exhibits.

I felt God say to me: “Randy be grateful to Me for all of My gifts and remember you are only imitating your Heavenly Father.”

Only God as unique. Only His creation is original.

We are mere toddlers in the playpen. Children in a sand box.

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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When Will God Lower the Boom?

When Will God Lower the Boom?

When Will God Lower the Boom?

Why our Eternal God tolerates the wicked people who do wicked things and why does He even seem to tolerate gross wickedness in His children, especially those that continue to live in gross immorality?

Why does He not lower the boom?

And then I realized that a man who wastes his life and all the resources that God gifted him with, sitting in a lazy boy recliner, well why does God not strike him down also?

We look at thinks so differently than God and we judge things differently than God. 

I’ve had multiple Christians tell me without saying so that they had achieved some degree of self-righteousness because they hadn’t killed anybody or raped anybody or stolen from a bank.

And yet from God’s perspective not only are we held accountable for the sins of commission like breaking the moral law, but we are accountable for sins of omission. 

Those are much easier to Ignore. Living your life for self is still self-centered living.

You take the resources and the life that God gave you and your capacity for pleasure and you waste the bulk of it instead of investing in heavenly treasures.

Could it be from God’s perspective, that a man spending his life in a Lazy Boy Recliner is just as great a loss as a man who is in prison for taking the life of another?

We were all created for Christ’s glory!

Lord, please give me the grace to not waste my life.

Amen

 

When Will God Lower the Boom?

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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Keeping Prayer Intellectually Interesting

Keeping Prayer Intellectually Interesting

Keeping Prayer Intellectually Interesting

Christian’s of all intellects and IQ’s find prayer challenging at times. All the common prayers (without training) fall into words used like help, bless, protect, love, heal, etc.

Of all my “helps” in prayer, the most superior one by far is using the Scriptures from the Bible.

For example, in praying for another person I could try to collect thoughts from my own mind or look for inspiration directly from the Holy Spirit into my mind,  but if I really want to have a richer, deeper, far more interesting prayer I can use the Word as an inspiration directly from God.

God became a man and dwelt among us (Jesus Christ) and communicated with us directly.

James 4:2 relays the truth that “we have not because we ask not”, meaning, God has given us an incredibly gift of being able to go to Him and actually ask for Him to do something, possibly something He won’t do unless we ask.

He so wants us to be intimately involved with Him that He limits His doing certain things to our asking Him.

Keeping Prayer Intellectually Interesting

Think of a father responding to the request of a child. He is delighted to grant the request if it falls into his general will of what is ultimately in the best interests of the child.

So, if we believe our lack of prayer could limit what God wants to do, then we would want to know what His general will is for His children, and that is most clearly and easily for in His written word.

Why waste time praying if you aren’t confident about what you are asking for?

Scriptures teaches that Christ Himself is praying for us on the Throne in heaven.  I want to know what He is praying and be in agreement with Him. I believe I can clearly find His will in the scriptures.

And so, I come “boldly unto the throne of grace and find help in time of need” because I can clearly determine God’s revealed will in the scriptures.

So how do you use scripture to pray?

Literally, an easy way to begin, open your Bible and pray, ” What is Your revealed will for me or Jon or Mom?”. Look for His revealed will. Look for the point He is trying to make or communicate. And then agree with Him!

Can we actually release the will of God from heaven onto the earth?

 

Keeping Prayer Intellectually Interesting

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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Expectations and Uncontrollable Circumstances

Expectations and Uncontrollable Circumstances

Expectations and Uncontrollable Circumstances

After I had biked 16 miles on a paved bike trail that was perfect for seniors that goes from downtown Tucson up through Oro Valley to the base of Mount Lemon, I had to stop and reflect on a issue I had.

The first 8 miles I anticipated, which were all uphill, but because of the clear acceptance and understanding of the challenge I was, what I would say, emotionally stable and calm as I worked on reaching the goal of making it to the top. Conditions and challenge of this bike ride I accepted. I understood my limitations.

SO, the whole time up the incline I am thinking with happy anticipation the way down. It’s going to be a breeze coming back down the bike trail. I won’t even have to pedal.

And then, after making it up to the top, when I turned around at the 8-mile mark unexpected fierce wind, a ridiculous wind came up the valley. It was so strong I couldn’t keep my hat on.

Expectations and Uncontrollable Circumstances

Expectations and Uncontrollable Circumstances

 

I ended up having to pedal even harder going down the hill because the wind was so intense. Struggling against this invisible force I became increasingly irate, extremely angry and I don’t become angry very often.

And I realized that the source of my anger was my frustration and disappointment because the treat that I thought was coming from the second half of the ride, downhill biking, that was taken away by something that I had absolutely no control over.

You might say it was an act of God.

So how does one respond when your hopes, dreams and expectations are stopped mid-stream because of uncontrollable circumstances?

Did I have an intrinsic right to my expectation?

I believe if I had been there with a friend, I would have treated them to a very uncomfortable display of angry outburst.

In life we expect some hardship and anticipate those breaks where we can coast downhill but alas, life is not “fair” most of the time.

Peace comes from Christ if we can give Him our rights, hope’s, dreams and expectations and trust Him even while difficult circumstances would cause us to rage inside.

Does God owe me? NO!

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Two Measures Foolish are a Christian Apologetics group of writers that write from a Christian Perspective and Christian World View using the Bible as our core.

We all travel on an individual journey on this planet earth that God has put into motion from the day we were formed in our mothers’ body. We all have deep questions that need to be answered. Why are we here? Is this all there is?

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