Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What's Your Bio?

One of my practices in meeting with the Lord is to use the devotional, "Our Daily Bread." Today's brief devotional presented an interesting challenge. The author of the message described trying to convey a unique concept to his writing class about writing a biographical sketch. The idea he came up with was to challenge his class to write a biography in six words. It seems like an impossible task but you may be surprised how much can be said and how much can be revealed in six words. The author pointed out how writer Ernest Hemingway wrote a rather poignant six-word bio: "For sale; baby shoes, never used." There is a sad reality behind those six words. The author went on to think about the Scriptures and searched for any six-word biographical descriptions of God's people. To his surprise he found quite a few. For example, David of whom God said: "A man after My own heart" (1 Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22)  Paul in the book of Ephesians described himself as: "An apostle of Jesus Christ." (Ephesians 1:1) Paul also describes Timothy as: "My true son in the faith." (1 Timothy 1:2) Lest we forget what was said about Mary: "The virgin shall be with child." (Matthew 1:23). Finally, there are many descriptions given about our Lord, but one of the most powerful is: "Became flesh and dwelt among us." (John 1:14) The author concludes his meditation by asking the question: "What six-word description would best describe me? Would it be positive or negative? Would it be "Not an easy person to love" or "A shining light for the Lord?" (italics mine) Think about it. What would your six-word bio say?
Pastor Sheree
"Blessed and highly favored mantle bearer"

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Lesson from Kindle

 I really enjoy my Kindle. Whether you are a fellow Kindle user or a fan of the Barnes and Noble version, the Nook, e-readers have become a significant part of our technological culture. I have to confess I was one of those naysayers who felt that e-readers were an assault on the good old fashioned paperback or hard cover book. But the reality for an avid reader like myself is there is not enough room in my house to keep adding bookcases. So after consulting with a few of my friends who were already "converts" to e-readers, I decided to take the plunge. My husband bought me a Kindle for Christmas and it is one of the best gifts (after Jesus) that I have received. The marvelous thing about the Kindle is the ease and immediate download of books. No hassle, no fuss. You look at your choices whether a book, magazine, etc., choose your title, and press the "buy" button. Within seconds you have your purchase literally at your fingertips. The other beautiful thing is the cost of each book is minimal with no shipping or handling charges. Recently as I watched my latest book purchase download it struck me that while technology is a wonderful thing it has its limits. As much as I marvel at what appears to be this "magical" transfer from cyber space to my e-reading device, I know that any thing can go wrong in the process.  Some mechanical glitch could prevent the download. My sister-in-law recently had her Kindle stop working properly and had a struggle getting her problem corrected even with the help of the technical support  site. And of course in time, like my bookcases, my Kindle will run out of space to store books. How very opposite that is in our relationship with God. When we accept Christ as Savior, we marvel at how the Holy Spirit instantly comes to dwell within us. No hassle, no fuss, no shipping or handling charges. And the price has already been paid through the shed blood of Christ. There is nothing that can interfere with our receiving God's free gift. No mechanical glitches. Moreover, we don't have to worry about ever running out of room in terms of the things God teaches us. We will never be able to exhaust His grace and love. It is eternal. So unlike my Kindle that one day will become unreliable and "forsake" me, God promises, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you." (Hebrews 13:5) The next time you find yourself enraptured by the latest and greatest technological toy, remember, "The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion, and sin." (Exodus 34:6-7a)  He is the only One who is constant and reliable all the time.
Many Blessings in Christ!
Pastor Sheree