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  • You are here: Blogs Directory / Personal / Living In The Rockies Welcome Guest
    Living In The Rockies
          On he road to Cheley Camp, Estes Park, Colorado

    Thu, Oct 7th - 3:05PM

    Is It Me?



     Many stories in the Bible hit me crosswise. One of them is the passage beginning in Matthew 26:21, where Jesus says to his disciples that one of them will betray Him. I’ve always been interested in their responses; each one asked if they were the one. The parable in Matthew 25:1-12 continues to bug me. Like the disciples in Matthew 26, I read this parable and wonder, is it me? Am I wise or foolish?

     I confess I’m guilty of not presenting anything new. I’m not particularly entertaining or innovative. Any “revelation” I may have is no more than that which is given to many by the Holy Spirit. It comforts me that I really don't care to be entertaining, innovative or revelatory. I deeply care to present what I feel the Lord is telling me to present – when He says to do it. That said, here’s some un-original bread – fresh for today.

     There will be incredible judgment some day for those who lied to us, telling us that “believing” in Jesus was all we had to do to be “saved”. That is simply not true. It’s not that simple. Leaving the erudite discussions about the underlying meanings of the groups in Matthew 25 to others, let’s back up and look at the bigger picture.

     Numerous places in the Gospel accounts of the life and ministry of Jesus, recount His commands for us to “follow”, and I submit, following is a lot more involved than just believing. In fact, “following” follows “ believing”. By stopping at the believing part, we have simply begun to read the instructions and excluded every point after bullet #1. Then, for some reason, we begin to pat ourselves on our backs, fat and happy over our good decisions. It is not good enough. There are more instructions, and they clearly indicate there is a personal cost – something we conveniently bypass if we don't read further.

     Put yourself in the place of the five wise virgins. If you have studied the Bible, prayed, fasted and begged for more intimacy with God, done your dead-level best to hear the daily directions of the Holy Spirit to you from the heart of God, turned your back on any form of known or revealed sin, begged for your hard, intractable heart to be cleansed and softened, begged for more ability to love God and serve Him – while realizing all that activity not only does not obligate God but is only reasonable – would you risk your trip to the clouds to explain to some Sunday pew-warmer how they can make the trip too? 

    I can't answer for you, but I wouldn’t even take their phone call. I’d be too occupied with the trip! After all, if they didn’t want to hear the whole truth when they had the time, they won’t be able to understand it when time runs out. That’s too bad.

     I know this is going to sound like spiritual arrogance to some readers. I realize it could be interpreted as some “holier than thou” person lecturing to the unwashed masses, but believe me, that is not true. We are all in the same boat, but we need to understand the ride might get rougher before the Master calms the wind and the waves upon His arrival. 

    There are trip expenses, and it could get expensive for each one of us, but I would be cheating reality if I was convinced it was free. Even the Hell’s Angels used to charge for the ride, and I wouldn’t trust a Salvation that cost me nothing! It wasn’t free for Him, and it shouldn’t be free for me – if I’m truly following.

     And when He does arrive, as He surely will, I for one, don't want to be running hither and yon trying to crib for the trip. I want to be ready. 

    The good news – right now there’s still time.

     

    John

     

     



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    Thu, Oct 7th - 3:03PM

    Lessons From Our Dogs



     

      Many years ago I remember when my kids were old enough to go squirrel hunting with me. They individually expressed an interest in going with me, so I made it a special event. I took them out one at a time on three separate occasions; one of those father/daughter trips good authors make a living writing about.

     We would get up early and head for the woods in the dark, arriving just as the woodland creatures were beginning to stir. I told each one of the children in turn to pay close attention to my directions. Specifically, I told them that if I said “Don't move!”, they were to freeze instantly in place. 

    I told them there were snakes in the woods, (Missouri/Kansas) and I might have to order them to do something, or not to do something, that they might not understand. I told them not to ever question me about an order, but to obey me instantly! I said I’d explain it all to them later, when we had the time. Then we practiced how they would instantly obey my orders. It was a game to them, but I was deadly serious. On those outings, my children had fun, and nobody got bitten by the copperheads. They obeyed, and their ability to obey was an honor for each of them. 

    But we American adults are like children without honor. We whine and complain about nearly every aspect of our lives – I’m talking to professing Christians here – and if (God forbid!) God would actually order us to do something, or refrain from doing something, we ask “Why?” instead of instantly obeying. We actually demand to understand before we commit to obedience. Is it any wonder why we get “snake” bit? Why is it we are blind to our own arrogance when we demand understanding before obedience? Perhaps we don't see our responses as demands, but they are.

    I think the underlying issue has always been rebellion, plain and simple. While we pay lip service to “serving God”, we’re demanding that He serve us. How dare God request (order) us to give up something we like? Would a good God do that? Would I be a bad father to order my child not to play with the pretty snake under the rock? If I had to raise my voice and risk hurting their feelings, would I be a cruel father? Would my order be misconstrued as unloving? Sadly, within the confines of real time and space, rather than this essay, the answer is often “yes”.

    I think we are dealing with two issues: rebellion and trust, and as long as we give a home to rebellion, we won't have any room for trust. We gravitate to rebellion (or whatever we like to call it), and refuse to trust God until He proves Himself to us – over and over. Frankly, if I were God, I would have more hope in my dog. Which brings up a point I’d like to make. 

    Some modern churches are fond of catchy slogans they proudly post on their signage. I suppose the signage is supposed to take the place of evangelism – sort of a 24-hour pastor – he never sleeps…. 

    I’m sure you’ve seen the same one I have: “Be the person your dog thinks you are”. Well, that’s catchy, but the real point is the other way around. That sign should read: “If your dog acted towards you the way you act towards God, he’d be up for adoption”. And honestly, my dog obeys me much better than I obey God. 

    For my dog, obedience was a learned response, but he did learn it, and it wasn’t easy for either of us while he did. My dog trusts me completely. Again, he learned that too.  And my dog hears MY voice; now he also hears other voices, but he obeys mine. My dog knows he belongs to me, and never doubts it. And here’s the clincher: my dog knows I am the boss, and he is NOT. And it is because of all this that I also learned to trust my dog! See the point?

    In these End Times, with the world around us spiraling into Bible prophecy, perhaps we should at least try to learn some lessons from our dogs.

    God is Kingwe are NOT. 

     

    John 



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    About Me

    Name: John Miltenberger
    ChristiansUnite ID: jmilty
    Member Since: 2006-08-22
    Location: Estes Park, Colorado, United States
    Denomination: Born-again believer
    About Me: Retired from Overland Park, Kansas and now living in Estes Park, Colorado. Another escapee from the Midwest!! Email: jmilty@q.com

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