Gospel Obscurity

Me Like A Bird

We love our home in South Escondido. We don’t own our home but we feel settled here and a big part of the love is the birdsong so prevalent here. We have all sort of birds, looking out the window we have a hummingbird nest in a front yard tree as well as a finch nest near our door. The doves, mockingbirds, blue jays and even the screech of lizards acting like birds all join together to make you feel like you live in an aviary!

This morning as I contemplate the purpose of God in setting our places and seasons, one encounter with a bird in our house makes me realize how I usually approach his plan.

We often leave our patio door – into the dining room – open. It is easier for the dogs to come and go as they wish and we love the fresh air, which living in Southern California we have year round! This particular morning, some weeks ago, I heard rustling coming from the dining room. As I investigated, I saw a blue bird had somehow flown into the room and was as the bay of windows in the front of the room trying to fly free – through the window.

He was even panting from the the exhaustion of aggressive flapping with no result. So I gingerly approached the bird trying to figure out how to get it to move the 15 feet to the back of the room where the open door was. I moved the shades out of the way to remove any obstacle but the bird still thought his freedom was found through the glass not the opposite way.

I didn’t want to grab the bird, probably because I was a little freaked and scared I would harm it. So instead I went outside, to the other side of the window with the plan to startle the bird to fly the other way.

As I made my way to the window in our front yard, another blue bird was on a branch near the window loudly cheering on its friend. I assured the bird I meant no harm and was trying to help! Then I approached the trapped bird from the other side of the glass and tried to scare it.

It worked. The bird flew away from me and through the open door.

I felt accomplished and like a friend of the animals in that moment.

Now, like the bird, how often have I been trapped up against some glass, assuming it was my path but ending up exhausted. Usually it is me running from God when he has opened the door I am meant to travel through and thankfully he does what it takes to get me back to soaring. Oh how I need to look more to him as he guides and cares for me.

I wonder if you ever find yourself up against the glass? You are there in order that you might seek God. Look to him, see how he pursues you in Jesus and follow him. You will catch your breath and fly just like you were meant to.

Adventure, Gospel Obscurity

Right Where You Are Supposed to Be

“And he made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us,” – Acts 17:26-27 ESV

We don’t like to look at most situations in life and settle on the idea we are right where we are supposed to be. Quite the opposite, we are always on the move to the next thing. Ever persuing the station of life that draws us toward it. Further forward always marching.

But here we have one of the more famous sermons, or shall we say lectures, in the New Testament and Paul makes clear to the crowd in Athens that they are right were they are supposed to be. That God determines time and stations, situations and the flow of the calendar. All on purpose. A wonderful purpose.

You are where you are so that you will seek God. The circumstances you find yourself in, good and bad, hard and maybe even devastating are unfolding so that you will seek the One that seeks you. God so desires real relationship with you that he has set you up to feel your way toward him and find him.

He is to be found. In fact Jesus, the God-man came to seek and save the lost, that’s us, his seeking meets us in the midst of life, wherever you are. Right where you are supposed to be.

This is not only for those that might “find” God for the first time, but even for those that believe in the life, death, and resurrection of Christ – that his sacrifice in your place saves you for eternity. Each situation is an invitation to seek all the more, to keep pressing toward God, to keep learning and resting in him.

How will you face today? You are right where you are supposed to be. Seek Jesus.

Gospel Obscurity, Quote

Moving Where The Spirit Invites

I think I am nearly done shifting the Holy Spirit’s guidance into the American dream and ready to do the opposite. To be used for the glory of Christ. To go where he sends, empowered as he equips. Sure it will be costly, but only as the world sees it. It is the most worthwhile endeavor.

This from Jim Eliot who gave his life to bring the gospel to the unreached.

“Surely those who know the great passionate heart of Jehovah must deny their own loves to share in the expression of His. Consider the call from the Throne above, “Go ye,” and from round about, “Come over and help us,” and even the call from the damned souls below, “Send Lazarus to my brothers, that they come not to this place.” Impelled, then, by these voices, I dare not stay home while Quichuas perish. So what if the well-fed church in the homeland needs stirring? They have the Scriptures, Moses, and the Prophets, and a whole lot more. Their condemnation is written on their bank books and in the dust on their Bible covers. American believers have sold their lives to the service of Mammon, and God has His rightful way of dealing with those who succumb to the spirit of Laodicea.”

And this from Jesus to our weary hearts.

“And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God.” When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished, saying, “Who then can be saved?”  But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Then Peter said in reply, “See, we have left everything and followed you. What then will we have?” Jesus said to them, “Truly, I say to you, in the new world, when the Son of Man will sit on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life. But many who are first will be last, and the last first.” Matthew 19:23–30 (ESV)