Monday, July 4, 2011

All fixed--for now

9:58 p.m. Today's project was to have our Jeep transmission replaced by our mechanic and brother in the Lord, Steve Kirkwood.

He arrived at 9:30 on the 4th of July, the only day he had open in his busy schedule of working for a couple of businesses and helping friends with his tremendous talent. His wife had to work today at Barnes & Noble, just like our son Kriss had to work at Starbucks. The sun never sets, it seems, on popular retail chains!

The first half of Steve's day was taken up by removing the old transmission, and thanks be to the Lord that there was at least a breeze flowing under the (literally) jacked-up Jeep! It was a hot, heavy kind of summer day, but he worked right along. His first break came at lunchtime, when he joined my husband Steve, my dad and me for barbequed hamburgers, potato salad, and corn on the cob. My Steve did a great job with the gas grill, as well as keeping up all his regular chores. We all discussed biblical child rearing, especially the ministry his oldest son has with Mission Aviation Fellowship, now living with his family in on the other side of the world.

Back to work for Steve, leaving my husband, my dad and me to visit for a while longer. Daddy had to go, having had a fine afternoon, and that gave me time to make my notes for Thursday's Bible study on I Samuel 19. In this chapter, jealous King Saul first promises his son Jonathan that he won't harm military hero and son-in-law David; then, in a fit of rage caused by an evil spirit, hurls a javelin at David while he plays the harp to soothe Saul's nerves! Thanks to some trickery by his wife Michal, David manages to escape from his house.

In an interesting wrap-up to the chapter, David ran to Saul's former mentor the prophet Samuel, and "told him all that Saul had done to him" (v.18). The King sends group after group of messengers to take David, but they end up joining Samuel's group of prophets and prophesying themselves! Finally, King Saul goes to Samuel's town of Naioth in Ramah to capture David himself. In an amazing turn of events,

Then the Spirit of God was upon him (Saul) also, and he went on and prophesied until he came to Naioth in Ramah. And he also stripped off his clothes and prophesied before Samuel in like manner, and lay down naked all that day and all that night. Therefore they say, "Is Saul also among the prophets?"

Boy--off on a mission with murderous intent, only to be touched by the Spirit of God! Does that mean that Saul was delivered of his eveil spirit permanently, or that he would stop pursuing David? We know the history--Saul pursued David for 10 years!

More to the point in our walk with the Lord, do we consistently walk in trust and obedience to Him no matter what hardships or disappointments come our way? Or do we wait to experience an occasional spiritual "high," whether by fellowship with strong believers, or inspired by a Sunday morning message, vow to do the right thing once again, but return to living under Satan's control like before? Are we counting on religious experiences and actions that appear to be operating in Jesus' name for proof that we are saved?

Be very, very careful!

Jesus said in Matthew 7:21-23,

"Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, 'Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?' And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!' "

Don't be like my Jeep, a material item that is fixed and will be running beautifully for a period of time, but will inevitably wear out and end up on a junk heap like very other car ever made, given enough time.

Make a true, real, commitment to Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, come what may in this life, and reap the reward of eternal life in His presence!

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