Saturday, November 15, 2014

Where Did You Come From?

I knew this day was coming, and it still sideswiped me.
My firstborn is a teenager today.
He's still shorter than me,
but I expect next year that won't be the case.
We are giving him piano lessons as his birthday gift.

I remember how his dad looked out at a baseball field
on our drive home from the hospital with him.
His dad loves baseball.
But this son is not the baseball type.
His mind is not his dad's, and it isn't mine.
His dad made the phone call to arrange the lessons,
because he loves who this particular man/child is.

He picks up instruments and works things out on them.
He draws with an eye that sees things three-dimensionally,
and can spin them in his mind.
He delights in geeky books about relativity and chemicals.
He sat in public crocheting an angel a few weeks ago.
I do not crochet, but this boy,
when he was shown how to make a simple crocheted chain
at the age of six or seven,
hid under his covers with a flashlight and crocheted a functional mitten.
The other day, we were discussing lie detectors, and he casually said,
"I made one from my snap circuits a few years ago."
From what he said, it worked in some form or another.

Sometimes I look at my children, and think,  
"Where did you come from?" 
Because they came from us, but they are not us.
They are eternal beings,
but they have not always existed.
God still speaks life into existence,
and sends it into the world through the doorway of other lives.
It stuns me to have been the doorway to these living beings.

Happy Birthday, son.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Do The Opposite

Philippians 1:28 tells us not to be 'in any way terrified by our adversaries'.
I read this in a commentary by A.T. Robertson:
"The word 'terrified' means 'startled like a scared horse' 
or 'fluttered like a surprised bird'.
"War horses will stand the booming of cannon 

and the bursting of shells at their feet. 
Some Christians are like scared rabbits. 
They jump and run at the first adversary who says 'Boo!' 
They have no more courage than grasshoppers and shy at every shadow... 
Panic is the worst sort of defeat. It is rout... 
The signal of life or death comes from God, 
not from the fickle crowd at a gladiatorial show." 

Fear is the enemy to fight.
The enemy's tactics throughout the book of Nehemiah 

were concentrated in provoking fear.
Whether it was from declared enemies, or enemies in the guise of friends, 

Nehemiah was urged to act on fear. (Nehemiah 6:10-14) 
But the Lord's purpose 
was that he should continue the task He had given him,
and ignore the voice of the 'prophet' that said, 

"They're coming to kill you, 
and they're coming to kill you by night. Hide!"

In our day, too, sometimes the voices even of other believers 

urge us to fear, to run, and hide.
Let's rather do the work the Lord has given us to do, 

and not be terrified by our adversaries.
Those voices are propaganda

and they are attempting to get us to do the enemy's work for him, 
by laying down our tools and abandoning the Lord's work.
Make Satan fight his own battles: don't score victories for him.
The Lord is with us, as long as we are with Him.

A quote from a mother during German occupation of Ukraine to her sons: 

"Whatever they [the Nazis] tell you to do, do the opposite."
She recognized they were the enemy.
The enemy of our souls is not on our side. 

Obeying his voice will not save us from the things we fear.