Monthly Archives: October 2012

Driving With Eggs in the Trunk

Yesterday, after grocery shopping, I was half way home when I realized my 18-flawless, all-natural eggs were accommodating my trunk space, intermingled amongst other seemingly impenetrable items of importance.  Quickly recognizing the apparent predicament, speed was decreased, turns were slow and meticulous, and gentle stops plagued my journey home.  As methodical as the trip became, the more cognizant I became of my surroundings, specifically other drivers.   Some may have been infuriated, some may have been annoyed, and some may haven’t even thought differently; or they may have been simply indifferent and unmoved.

Instantly, I realized it was no longer about the eggs; it was no longer about the principle to get the eggs home safely.  Instead, just as God continues to show perspective through a new lens each and every day; today, the catalyst was a measly package of eggs.

Now you have this elementary, yet necessary picture in your head; what’s the importance?  What’s the significance?

As mentioned above, I became conscious not only of the drivers around me being frustrated and confused by my highly conservative driving, but also recognized their unfamiliarity and distant perspective they had on my predicament.  They didn’t know me.  There’s no position to hold that would recognize something as little, yet profoundly important and fragile my baggage was.

These infirm, easily hurt, particular constituents were personal, they were unknown, they were in fact unique to my car and life only.  These eggs resemble our personal life.  We all travel through rough times.  We ALL experience hardships, whether that’s a loss of a friend, family, or relationship, we cannot go about the world, being disciples of the Lord to the rest of the world if we aren’t considerate and accommodating to others.  Some people may be going through the toughest season of their life and even though we aren’t aware of their eggs in the trunk, we can transform and alter their day by simply holding the door open, helping them with their groceries, or just saying ‘God Bless You.’

In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’-Acts 20:35

Believers go through tough times too.  Even though we may be exhausted or unsettled, we still must serve others as the Lord designed us, with respect, love, kindness, and courtesy.  Just remember, we’re all imperfect.  We will mess up.  We will have those moments of inferior treatment towards others or regrets, but the next person God brings along, it’s your time to shine for them and most importantly, Jesus Christ.

We weren’t meant to let these eggs break, but instead, encourage, empower, support, and confirm their existence.  We ALWAYS want them to safely navigate their burdensome climate with their eggs unscathed and unbroken.  


A Busted Heart

Isn’t it funny how we get into these “comfortable” stages and moments of our lives, where everything is going as planned, everything seems to be seamlessly happening in the exact order, the exact timing of our plans are all coming to fruition?  Whether it was for our own life ambitions, relationship, careers, family, or what, we think we have it all figured out, there are no doubts, everything is perfect.  But is it?

Are we sure we’re on the right path?  Do we keep on chasing the wind, from one selfish ambition to the next, as if we were all hummingbirds; expeditiously traversing God’s creation only to stall for a brief moment at the expansive medley of colorful, sweet, nectar-filled flowers, simply stopping for one mere gratifying accomplishment after the next, seemingly enough only to wet our palates?  In other words, sooner or later, we realize the emptiness these flowers, these accomplishments, the road traveled, has merely been the road to nowhere.  All of the wandering, all of the self-explorations for personal achievement have been all in vain, if one aspect isn’t straight, if one facet of your life is missing or suffering, and that is your relationship with the Lord.

Whether we’ve gotten ourselves into sinful relationships, made wrong career choices, or simply living our lives to buy the latest and greatest gadget, God can turn it all around.  Even though we may be lost, even though we may feel inadquate, even though one season may be ending, He will always meet us right where we are.  It doesn’t matter the hardship, whether it’s a major relationship disappointment or a broken heart, we must admit we’re in desperate need of Jesus Christ.  Because He is the only One who can mend us, to renew us, to reawaken our spirit.  First, we must realize all of these sinful components have torn us away from His Love.  He loves us so so much that He allows us to stray.  He allows us freedom.  He allows us to do all the aforementioned without Him being in our lives because He loves us THAT much.  Think about that again.  He lets us sin, He lets us go our own ways because He loves us so much.

“I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist.  Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” Isaiah 44:22 (NIV)  

Doesn’t matter your history of straying, doesn’t matter your inconsistencies, doesn’t matter if we have selfishly fallen on our faces, or lost our way innumerous times; only Jesus Christ, His unfailing love, the one who loves all, the one who IS love, will always meet you where you’re at and will never let you lose your way again.

Deuteronomy 31:8 “And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”

Professional Doesn’t Mean Perfection

Isn’t it interesting how much we value professionals today?  From doctors to plumbers, we take their word for gold.  We respect and trust their judgment, whether it’s a malignant or benign to a clogged or unclogged diagnosis.  Even though we hold these people and positions in high regards, the question remains, why is this so?  A further question, is it because it’s a specialty or a field of study for the minority, for the few, for the uncommon person to follow such a career path.

This infrequently traveled professional path negates restricted knowledge to the typical person.  Granted, everyone can research and educate themselves on the scientific inner workings of the human body or how plumbing fixtures are built and maintained, but it’s simply not equivalent and proportionately valued.  We can’t consider ourselves doctors because we’ve successfully diagnosed our friends and family through WebMD; or because we unclogged a perturbed toilet means we’re now officially licensed plumbers.  We’re naturally missing the formal education and the gained experience.

Through all of this, through all of the years of formal classes, training, and workforce experience, we expect complete perfection from these individuals.  We’ve undivided them from the rest because they’re “professionals” in that field.  But why do we consider them professionals?  Is it because we’re not in that career field?  Is it because we don’t have those same interests or cares?  Is it because we simply think it’s too inferior or superior for our own liking?  All of these questions begin to flood my mind about how we perceive and treat these people of categorical professional positions.

At the end of the day, we come to a point of reflection, not only with ourselves, but with how we have treated others throughout the day.  Did we unconditionally love on every single person we encountered throughout the day?  Did we forgive and forget the mistakes people made?  Did we conclude we’re ALL human and make mistakes?  The latter is the most important question to ask yourself.

We’re human.  We’re going to make mistakes.  We’re going to disappoint.  We’re going to occasionally achieve the minimum.  We may not finish.  Some will misdiagnose.  Some will utter hurtful words.  And most will perfect being flawless and judgmental, even though a simple self-reflection is needed to realize we’re all tarnished; we’re all completely imperfect.

Ephesians 4:32-“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”

Luckily for us, there is only One who is perfect, the ultimate Professional, the one and only who can treat ALL seemingly incurable problems, misfortunes, and mistakes in our lives.  As much as we think our lives are hopelessly traveling in the wrong direction, we can call upon the one and only, all curable, all life-giving, wholesome professional, that will never make a mistake, that will always construct our lives in His eyes.  Even though there will be misdiagnoses and leaks in the plumbing, God will always come through.  He is the ONLY professional that’s perfect!

AON vs. CON: What Is CON? Part II

Now that we’ve defined what an ‘all or nothing’ effort entitles, can you see these parallels in your life?  Just rethink or reread Part I and the message at hand.  Particularly, living our lives through an ‘all or nothing’ mentality and effort, only to realize, in the end, what we were striving for, is only finite accomplishments, only superficial absurdity.  So let me as you this.  If we aren’t suppose to be living this way, how should we be living?

CON is the answer.  As some of you may already have guessed, a ‘Christ or nothing’ effort is what we should be striving for.

Granted there are many, many circumstances God wants us to strive for our ultimate selves, strive for doing our best, but we simply shouldn’t be extrinsically motivated.  We shouldn’t be motivated to fill the empty space on our shelves to place a trophy or medal.  Superficial extrinsic motivation is not the answer.  Just like with our fitness and exercise goals, we shouldn’t always be focused on “feel good” pictures, but instead, much deeper, more lasting consequences of such lifestyle changes.  Exercise and a healthy diet is beneficial to not only aesthetics, but also to overall physical longevity.  In other words, because we’re (Americans) are heavily focused on the immediate, short-term, we’re not always thinking down the road, to the consequences of tomorrow, to what we choose to do today will what we be in the future.  We choose our healthy lifestyles yes maybe for aesthetics, but most importantly, we chose it to reap the future benefits, later in life.  To keep up with our children, to fend off diseases, to maintain a healthy, active body, and the list continues.

Our fitness, exercise, nutrition, or weight lifting goals and accomplishments shouldn’t be the sole purpose of why we continue to pursue these healthy choices.  Our ‘all or nothing’ effort is highly encouraged in some instances, if, and only if, we aren’t controlled by simply the results, especially the temporary, short-lived results.

I know the aforementioned may sound counterintuitive, but understand, we must live our lives to the fullest not to be continually pushed forward from one job to the next, from one city to the next, one education to the next, one certification to the next, in which these temporary highs, these “honeymoon moments” are what gets us by each day.  Instead, we need, we should be investing our time, our effort into the one and only Lord and Savior, when put first, He will provide all things we need!  Matthew 6:33 states “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

Remember, I’m not saying an ‘all or nothing’ effort is a bad thing, but instead, recognizing a difference between an ‘Christ or nothing’ effort, where all things are done for Him and Him alone, or simply driven by temporary rewards.  “I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus,” Philippians 3:14.

One is everlasting, one isn’t, you decide what kind of effort you’ll put forward!