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People Are Not Like Pandora

I’ve found a sweet spot this morning.  For those who must know, it’s a second hand wicker chair in a dark bedroom, a small space heater humming to my right, my dear wife sleeping on the bed to my left, and an eight year old boy crashed on a love seat positioned across a coffee table from where I am.  He’s got a gnarly cough so we wanted him near us over the night time hours.

I’m listening to a Pandora station of worship music dialed to perfection with relentless pushing of the ‘Like it/Don’t like it’ buttons.  It’s been a while since it’s played anything I didn’t like….and if it does, I am comforted with the fact that I can vanquish it with the press of a button.

I’m reading Romans and finding my heart remarkably tender towards the Lord. A nearly palpable presence of the Holy Spirit rests in the room.   I find my spirit responding to His.   Here in the dark, He is near.  Can it get any better?    Of course not, but it’s about to get worse.

  • In a few minutes, The Compound will explode with the fury of all my children, which is a real life daily drama, and, as I understand it, a television show too.  Right now, some who are awake and should not be, and others who are asleep and should be awake.  Neither group will be happy in a few minutes.
  • After rushing the pokey ones and restraining the fast ones, I will run out the door with some of them to drop them off. Hopefully I will not find two gallons of milk in the back of the truck like I did yesterday, having forgotten to take them in the night before.
  • Then, I will try and find a parking spot at IHOP.  It is Tuesday, meaning finding that spot will be something akin to finding the ark of the covenant, minus the pits with pungi sticks, but adding the challenge of international drivers unaccustomed to American blinker traditions.

I’m thinking if today is normal, I’ll be annoyed within 15 minutes of leaving this sweet, Holy Spirit infused spot in my bedroom…and I’ll be annoyed with people who I just read about in Romans.  You see, sitting here in the dark, I’m reading Romans off my laptop screen – and I’m finding it very touching.  Set to a custom soundtrack of worship music and a snoring little boy, this book makes a remarkable amount of sense.   I understand this ‘we are members of one body, prefer one another, take the low place, submit to authority, love your neighbor’ stuff.  I’m moved by it.

…but the wheels fall off when I can’t apply the Pandora Like it/Don’t Like it buttons to people I meet. Here in my bedroom, in the predawn hours, I can control the environment and in doing so, I find Jesus near.  My lack of ability to find Him in the very body of people He sends my way to have relatiionship with is appalling, though.

This would be a good time for a warm, gentle blog wrap up that makes one feel better about being alive…the digital equivalent of a Hallmark card, but I’m getting no card this morning.  All I’m getting is a word from the Lord telling me that He wants to be this near for the entire day – in fact, He often does come this near during the day, but I manage to push Him away because He comes in a form that I’d rather not deal with….the life of another human being.

I have more thoughts on all this, but need to run.  Pandora just picked a song I don’t like and I want to send it away.

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6 Responses

  1. This is exactly what I have been praying about. God has sent us these 2 new foster sons. I am supposed to be showing them Jesus. Instead I am showing them that I am no different than other mothers they have had. Easily irritated, impatient, sometimes angry. Lord, you sent them, please give me the grace to love them the way you do. Heal my body so the constant pain and mental fog don’t get in the way of following you. I want to show them Jesus…

  2. The Lord has been dealing with me about this same issue! Learning how to love God through relationships that I don’t really want to be in. Uggghhh… This is where following Jesus gets difficult. Yikes.

  3. That sweet spot, the thin place, that hidden moment is life and peace for the day, the Ever Present Presence.

    Thanks Randy for reminding me of the need to daily go there so I can give His response as people contact requires it, always.

  4. Ouch.

  5. Thanks! A great reminder and much-needed spurring on.

  6. ..speaking/correcting with gentleness to my exuberant, loud, stomping-through-the-house toddler boy : )

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