One of the things that I find most comforting in life is know how God sees our future. We tend to limit God based on how we think he works or how we think he should work. This is why the second commandment is such a big deal. When we make a physical representation of God, we remove him from being a God that is limitless to a one-dimensional caricature. We form Him in our image by assuming that he should look and act like us. He doesn’t work that way.
Here is one of the most freeing things that I have come to understand and appreciate in my relationship with God. When I stress over what the future holds I fail to see my future in the way God does. The way that God sees our future is exactly how we see our past. That understanding transforms our trust. When we look to our past, we see a vast array of unconnected dots that somehow worked together to bring us to the job that we have the person we married and the school we attend. Steve Jobs was a self-proclaimed Buddhist but as a result of common grace he understood this. He attributed the beauty of his products to an obscure class on calligraphy he took in college.
What God’s word tells us is that every seemingly unconnected dots that have been linked sovereignly and are how God see our future. We see disconnected dots God see our beginning from our end. It is that simple understanding that help us trust him in every season of life.
The ruling that came down this week was not unexpected. It was a slow build that started in the 1960’s with the sexual revolution. What the ruling did was place the final nail in the coffin of Orthodox Christianity as the majority viewpoint in our country. As a country we have been drifting for years and we have finally hit the sand bar of post modernism with full force.
Here is what we don’t need to do. Freak out and bunker down. We must love and engage. The beautiful thing about Orthodox Christianity is that it is about true love, costly love. We as a culture have fallen in love with love. Not real love but the idea of love. Real love is not loving those who love you but loving those who hate you. Love is not a constitutional right, love is a gift. A gift that cost God what was most dear to him to ransom back to himself what was most far from him. We must convey this kind of love in everything we do and say. We must fight tolerance by actually loving our neighbors.
I am a huge fan of Pixar (We all gave them a pass on Cars 2). Is it because I love cartoons? No. If that was the case I would have blogged about that aliens one that Dreamworks did that I can’t even remember the name of. I like cartoons but I love stories. Pixar is a company that tells stories and they so happen to use cartoons to do that. One of my favorite movies cartoon or not is UP. So my excitement for Inside Out was palpable. I loved it. It lived up to the hype I had created for it in my mind, ironically enough. There were so many deep themes that made you think, that made you laugh and yes made you fight back tears.
I could relate to being the new kid in class. I was always the new kid. Going to 10 different schools in your school career makes you the “new kid” far more often than any kid would wish for. So I could identify with Riley. As a parent of four kids I could identify with the parents in the movie. Pixar more than most movie production companies does an amazing job of making you feel what they want you to feel. There are many themes I could blog about but the one that was most interesting to me was the theme of Joy and Sadness.
The Journey toward knowing your calling. Are you called?
- Do you have a feeling of helplessness?
- Do you have a sense of willingness?
- Do you have a sense of significant-ness?
Jim Burns started writing phrases that he wrote when he realized that he wasn’t going to be around forever.
Life has pain – You choose the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. 1 Tim. 4:7
Find life-giving replenishing relationships
- Do you have a mentor?
- Peer Relationships?
- Are you mentoring someone?
Find margin – You have to leave room for God moments.
You need to take time to refresh, recreate, play and have a great attitude as a family.
For families and marriages you have to play together.
Invest in your staff.
Untended fires become a pile of ashes. – Self leadership is massively important.
A couple of weeks ago I was at the Gospel Coalition Conference. There were many sessions and breakouts that ministered to me personally. One of my favorite sessions was a panel discussion on justice. Panel discussions are temperamental they are fragile they can go bad quick. Much of that depends on the moderator far more than the panelists or the subject matter. DA Carson did a brilliant job moderating. The interruption with the various guys on the panel was lively and respectful. I left the session encouraged, challenged and hopeful. In light of the recent events in Baltimore which are just a string of many other events where justice is being sought, not in the way it should by any means. In light of these events I thought I would share the video of that panel discussion with you. I hope you find it as helpful as I did.