Friday, January 23, 2009

Without the Holy Spirit, man is as deaf as a post

In the 15th century, a French monk named Brother Lawrence, who washed dishes in the monastery, began a love affair with the Holy Spirit.

His work is published in a book and is sold in numbers only eclipsed by the Bible.

His observations have echoed through time...

One of his stated beliefs were that with the help of the Holy Spirit, truths revealed to man will stay as pertinent from the time given through the centuries to those who open themselves up to the Holy Spirits voice. A truth uttered in the 2nd century is applicable to those living in the 21st century.

The flip side of the coin is that without the leading of the Holy Spirit, man is as deaf as a post. It is like trying to explain a complex engineering principle of a 5 year old child. Sure, they can hear the words coming out of your mouth, but they mean absolutely nothing to them.

Unfortunately, the American Christian church is filled with folks who not only don't hear the Holy Spirit, but have no idea when he is NOT there.

It is no more than a group of folks who are going through the motions, worshiping church doctrine. And they are only doing so because that is the tradition they were taught.

And this grieves the Holy Spirit. They might has well been praying to the sheet rock above their heads.

Never being challenged. Never graduating to meat...merely surviving on bottled formula. Unable to grow through Christ. And that's the way they like it.

Poor God. When he gave his people free will, he allowed them the choice to grow or not. To become the people that God intended, or not.

Just like kids who refuse to grow. To take on responsibility . To become the people, according to their own bent.

Without opening up their minds and hearts to the Holy Spirit, they might as well be hooked up to a ventilator and fed through an IV. Their muscles going into atrophy.

This is not what God had in mind.

And I hear Him weep...but am surrounded by people who hear nothing but the wind.

I cannot share the things of God with them...I might as well be speaking a foreign language.

Lord, I apologize for them. And ask you might give them site.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Goodness and Light

Jesus came, died and rose again so as to bring us goodness and light.

Now think about that for a minuet. Goodness and light. We are commanded to be the light of the world. We are to have our lamps full of oil, wicks trimmed and lighted.

You will find nowhere God commands us to have our lamps put up, stashed somewhere in the back of some overstuffed closet. God Himself told us that those who do not carry the light are going to miss the boat.

The other side of the coin, or the constant pattern that anyone watching will observe, is this:

When it comes to things of God, the answers are simple, not easy.

You come to Jesus and hand Him all the trash, the awful things we have done in our lives that Jesus had to bare so that we might be worthy to see God. We have to hand over all of those hidden things we keep buried behind that locked closet door of our lives. Denial will do no good here. The Lord knows what's in there. But He will not make you. He will not do it for you. It's your closet, you clean it.

He does this thing for us so that when we pick up our lamp what others see is God's love.

Too often folks who are filling America's churches are just lost souls, yelling in the dark. They seek others to affirm that even though they are feeling around in the dark, they are heading in the right direction. Afraid to take the lamp which Jesus freely gives us all, because admitting (confessing, if that works better for you) is too painful to bare.

I can speak from personal experience that when you walk into a dark room full of hyper-religious people with your lamp way up high, it is going to push many of these folks out of their comfort zones. When that happens, stand by. You will hear voices coming from the dark, with weak attempts to invalidate your relationship with God.

Remember, there is always going to be more of them than there is of you. Satan loves stoking up the fires of peer pressure. No light here but lotsa heat!

If you find yourself in this position, rejoice!!

Monday, August 6, 2007

That's Good Enough

Ever wonder why when you are relying on someone to inform you about a certain action, say directions to a geographic location, it ends up being way harder than it should have?

Because for you, that's good enough.

I hear and read all the time about companies customer service being the linchpin of their business. "We have customer service second to none!" Or, "Customer service, after the sale. 24/7"

They open their mouths and the verbal equivalent of rotting meat just spews from their mouths.

What they, and most others don't realize(or admit) is that customer service BEGINS when something has gone wrong. If someone has the unmitigated gaul to question their lofty claims, they are submitting themselves to tired(and mostly fictional) claims of all the legions of satisfied customers who have nothing but praise and adulation to heap upon anyone who might care to listen.

Case in point: Epoxy coating my garage floor. I wanted to coat my garage floor so that it might be more easily cleaned(If you've ever tried to actually keep bare concrete clean, you know where I'm coming from) and to stop the never ending source of dust that bare concrete is. If you walk on it, it wears. Dust gets tracked into the house. Not to mention that I wanted to use my 500sqft garage for woodworking/finishing. You never appreciate dust until putting a clear finish on something you've put a lot of hours in, and having to contend with dust settling on the finish.

I was in the NAVY for six years, and the NAVY likes to keep the rust off their stuff by applying regular coats of epoxy paint...stinky, a pain and very tough. So I'm familiar with the stuff.

I read countless unhappy posting in the newsgroups about folks using water-based products, which didn't surprise me. So deciding on a true epoxy was easy. That leaves two choices: 100% solids(which are great. No fumes, single coat. 10mil Very expensive), or a lesser, more affordable semi solid(you need two coats. Fumes are brutal. A fraction of the cost).

I decided to go with a company called Durall. I read all of the information on their website. I downloaded the instructions in .pdf format. I read the claims of customer service, and took them at their word. So I called them four times prior to purchasing from them. I spoke to them at length about preparation and application. I bought two kits, which include the epoxy/hardener, acid etcher, soap/degreaser, vinyl chips in the color of my choice, putty for filling two cracks and two paints stir sticks.

I spent 12 hours with a rotary floor scrubber prepping the floor. I purchased a new wet/dry vac so I could get every speck of dust or grit off the floor prior to rolling the epoxy.

I followed the instructions, and laid the first coat down. I then filled the cracks with the supplied putty, and then sanded the cracks to feather them in.

The trouble began on the second coat. You are instructed to mix part a and part b and then wait for 30 mins for the reaction to begin and then paint. I ended up having to wait over an hour and a half before the epoxy was thick enough to cover the putty used to fill dents and cracks. I began rolling the floor. About half way through I noticed that the color wasn't consistent across the floor. I had to finish what I started, so I completed the coat.

The instructions indicate you can walk of the floor in four hours. Half of my floor stayed sticky to the touch for five days. And everywhere there was the slightest use of the crack/pit putty, there were hundreds of terrible fisheyes.

I called and left multiple messages on their 24/7 customer service number over a period of four days. I finally got hold of one fellow, who mumbled about bad batches and how I needed to get another coat down and that would fix it. He told me that they could mix me a batch with some anti-fisheye additive that would fix that for me as well. They had my information, so I waited.

Stupid me.

A week later I spoke to another gentlemen, who I had spoken to at length about how to apply their product. He started telling me things like "We like to stir the epoxy 200 strokes. Then pour it from one container to another several times so it will be properly mixed"


Where was all this advise BEFORE when I was asking you about application?

Ok, so where is the epoxy that was promised to be a week before? You know, the one specially mixed for me?

"We don't do that. You'll just have to buy another kit." I didn't even get a discount on the shipping.

This brings me to the point of this post.

All that time talking to him about the details of applying their product?

It was good enough.

They weren't going to get stuck with a buggered up floor. As long as I bought their stuff, that was good enough.

There was no motivation to provide customer service. As long as they sell their crap...

Well, that's just good enough.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Simple but not easy.

Life is full of pot holes and other hidden features. But there is hope. My philosophy about life, and all things spiritual boils down to this. It's all about truth.

God knows us, always has. He describes and illustrates us in perfect detail in His word. His word, that does not change. It doesn't become obsolete. The reason for that is simple. People don't change. Now I'm not talking individually here. A person can change(although few do). But in general, as a group. People don't change. Our styles do, how we look at the world can. Governments come and go. But relative to who we are, that stays the same.

There is hope, however. That hope is in embracing the truth. Identify it. Name it. Claim it and call it our own.

The process is more often than not, simple.

Simple, but not easy.

God didn't just dump us here and leave us to suffer. There is a way to navigate through all the muck and debris. We don't have to come out on the loosing end. You've got to identify the truth. That is the simple part. Then we apply that truth to our selves. That is where it quits being easy. It's not easy. Especially at first. When you practice your part of the lie for a lifetime, stepping away from that can be unnatural. Add the fact that everyone around you is still playing the lie card, you'll find it takes commitment to stay with it.

Identify it. Name it. Profess it. Deal with it. That is what you do with the truth. And the truth will set you free.

It's not your job to be a cosmic cop. God was running things long before you showed up on the scene. He's watching the phone. This is about YOU.