I want to thank those of you who came to our house on Memorial Day. I think we had a whole bunch of good food and even more great fellowship!
There was one situation that came up, though, that I think we can ALL learn a lesson from. It seems that “Person A” offered to retrieve some lawn chairs for “Person B” out of “Person B’s” car. This was very thoughtful of “Person A.”
However, when “Person B” was ready to leave, the keys to his/her car were nowhere to be found. “Person B” had not seen them since giving them to “Person A.”
“Person A” thought they had returned the keys, but “Person B” was sure they had not returned the keys. So “Person B” called the police and had “Person A” arrested for stealing their keys...I’m just kidding!
A great search was initiated by many of the good folks who were at our house. Several retraced the steps from the trunk to the back yard, thoroughly searched where everyone involved was sitting...but to no avail: the keys were not on the ground.
Finally it was decided that “Person A” had accidently dropped the keys in the trunk of “Person B’s” car. “Person B’s” spouse did not have their keys, so “Person B” secured a ride to their home to retrieve their spouses keys to the car.
After opening the trunk, it was discovered that the previous conclusion had been incorrect: the keys were not accidently locked in the trunk.
“Person A” offered to buy a new key (“smart” keys that are fairly expensive), “Person B” declined and finally everyone left our house.
With everyone gone, “Person C” (that’s me) decided to make one more pass through the back yard, car port and driveway. Just as “Person C” was going in the house, he glanced at the hood of “Person M’s” car...and there was the key!
“Person C” happily called “Person B” to report the good news. “Person B” called “Person A” and, well, all’s well that ends well.
So what’s the point?
I think I figured it out...everyone who had been retracing the path from the car to the back yard had been looking at the ground. They looked under the car, in the grass, under fallen leaves, everywhere low.
If someone (myself included) had taken their eyes off the ground and looked up, they would have quickly discovered the key.
So many times when we are facing problems, we look down, kick the dirt, and, when we don’t find a solution, we keep looking down and keep kicking the dirt and only find more frustration.
In Psalm 121:1-2 the psalmist says, “I lift up my eyes to the hills—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.”
The next time you have lost something or have a problem, remember to “lift up your eyes to the hills…”
God has given us a wonderful gift (several actually). But the one gift I would like us to think about is our mind. The mind is a very powerful tool.
Did you know, though, that we can use the power of our mind to actually impact the physical world around us? It true!
Your mindset can and does impact the type of day you are having (and yes, the type of day you are having can also impact your mindset, which is what happens most of the time).
We may not be able to control everything that happens to us, but we can control our response to those things.
Bad things are going to happen to us. People are going to say rotten things about us or even to us. Circumstances are going to pop up that really try our patience (to say nothing about our Christianity).
We cannot control any of these “bad” things...but we can and must control our response when these type of things happen to us.
For example, lets say you are driving to work and have a flat tire. You grumble, “What a GREAT way to start to the day!” You call the office, let them know what happened and that you’re going to be late. Then grumble some more as you change the tire. You pull into a tire shop and, as it turns out, your flat is unfixable. Now you have to buy a new tire. You grumble some more as you begrudgingly pay for the tire.
Throughout this process, it is all about you and the bad day you know you are now going to have. But, at any point during the above example did it dawn on you that God was leading you to a person (the tire shop person) that needs Him and that you can be His hands in ministering to that person?
Some people, once they have made up their mind, there is no changing their mind. Sometimes this is a bad thing. Sometimes, though, it can be a good thing.
The psalmist tells us, “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it” (Ps 118:24).
Make up your mind to “rejoice and be glad in it” no matter what type of day you are having...and don’t let anyone or anything change your mind.
Truthfully, we all have been guilty of “jumping the gun” at some point in our lives. We think we know what we are doing...we think we know what we are getting into: but it turns out that we don’t.
Take this reporter, for example...
His request approved, the CNN News photographer quickly used a cell phone to call the local airport to charter a flight.
He was told a twin-engine plane would be waiting for him at the airport.
Arriving at the airfield, he spotted a plane warming up outside a hanger.
He jumped in with his bag, slammed the door shut, and shouted, “Let’s go.”
The pilot taxied out, swung the plane into the wind and took off.
Once in the air, the photographer instructed the pilot, “Fly over the valley and make low passes so I can take pictures of the fires on the hillsides.”
“Why?” asked the pilot.
“Because I’m a photographer for CNN”, he responded, “and I need to get some close up shots.”
The pilot was strangely silent for a moment.
Finally he stammered, “So, what you’re telling me, is... You’re NOT my flight instructor?”
In Luke 14, Jesus talks about the cost of being a disciple of His. He speaks of giving up everything we have to be His disciple...that Jesus has to be FIRST, even ahead of family.
Then He goes on to talk about two scenarios: building a tower and a king whose troops are outnumbered 2 to 1. In each case Jesus says the builder and the king should count the cost before making the commitment.
Same is true with us. We need to understand “what we are getting into” before we blindly jump on a plane. We have to give up EVERYTHING to be His disciple; and that is not easy.
Is there something you refuse to give up? If so, you might want to make sure Jesus is really in your life’s pilot seat.