Archive for May, 2010

patronizing or honor?

May 21, 2010 2 comments

I’m enjoying a new book that gives me detailed descriptions of specialized SEAL training for the US Navy.  The writer is furnishing explicit  narration and colorful images of this process.  These SEALS are some bad boys who are doing  jobs all over the world that no one else can handle or would want, except for maybe Arnold, back in his movie prime, before he got the cushy desk job.

One of the thoughts that has captured me is the explanation from the writer, on why the training is so brutal.  Yes, the right word is brutal.  He reflects on a conversation that he had with his C.O. after he had completed the training.  I won’t use exact wording, but here is the main ideal conveyed:  THE TRAINING IS BRUTAL AND UNJUST.  IT HAS TO BE THAT WAY.  IT IS THE ONLY WAY WE CAN FIND OUT IF A MAN JUST LIKES THE IDEAL OF BEING A SEAL OR IF IT IN HIS HEART AND EVERY FIBER OF HIS BEING TO BE A SEAL. One other ideal stuck with me:  IF A MAN EVER ENTERTAINS THE IDEAL OF QUITTING…HE IS DONE FOR.  WHAT WE DO EXTERNALLY TO THE CANDIDATE EXPOSES WHAT HE THINKS INTERNALLY.  WAIVER FOR A MOMENT AND THE PAIN WILL MAKE THE CALL FOR YOU. We ought to simmer on that one for a while.

So Patti and I are at another Training Camp for THE WORLD RACE. We know what these 135 kids are in for, they do not, not yet anyway.  These racers will get the opportunity to learn the difference between real honor as compared to only patronizing.  Patronizing means that you go through the motions of honor, but it isn’t what is really in your heart.  Motivations and attitudes are still too self-focused and the bottom-line still hovers around “what about me?”  Honor means that the heart has already decided.  THINK ABOUT THIS! “Come hell or high water, just or unjust, happy or sad, easy or hard, black or white, taste great or less filling…I’ve already made the choice to choose-in, commit, serve, prefer others and go the distance!” The development of true spiritual sons and spiritual daughters weighs in the balance as these potential racers figure out what they are going to commit too; whether or not they really heard God.  And, if they choose to run the course and endure the test, their life will be changed…FOREVER!  Of course it IS hard and that is what makes it great!  YES, this is a word and lesson for every one of us…ESPECIALLY the church.


Categories: Uncategorized

nasty suggestions

May 13, 2010 5 comments

Have you figured out that most of the things we fear never occur?  Alfred Hitchcock knew this and made millions  of dollars off of the concept.  The spooky old filmmaker knew that a shadowy suggestion with some creepy music would send your mind reeling into great depths of terror.  His modern protege, M. Night Shyamalan, uses the same technique.  The suggestion ignites our imagination and our “fear” drives the rest.  In other words, we do it to ourselves.  Think about all of the things we deny ourselves, our friends, our family, our kids because of our fearful speculations that will never happen!  How many relationships have been circumvented because we are afraid of being vulnerable again.  How many couples have defaulted into just sharing space and ignore the marriage covenant because one or both are afraid of being wounded?  If we give-in to every fear that the enemy suggest, we might as well lock the doors, have our food delivered through the mail slot and experience the world through the eyes of virtual technology.  It is stinkin’ ridiculous!  If you breath  air on this planet, you are going to get hurt (maybe even often), rejected, ignored, overlooked and most-likely stepped on.  BUT, you can also risk the profound possibility of love and friendship, experience divinely orchestrated union and likely know the holy joys of real covenant.  But, it is going to require you to  risk some head shots, trust again, be vulnerable, ask for forgiveness on a regular basis and be willing to forgive and move on!  What a horrible way to live, when we allow the nasty suggestions about our future to come only from the pits of our past hurt.  Significant relationship prove there worth and depth not in calm seas, but when the storms roll in.  How else would you ever know if the boat has leaks?  I guess you could live in your comfort cave and never experience anything that is real, but that feels more like prison.  Assuredly, that is prison.

The more I watch and the closer I listen, the more I am convinced that in our culture (Christians may be worse than non-Christians) we are absolutely immersed and inundated in fear.  You would think that we would have a better grip on this, but we do not.  Much like Saul and Israel when they heard the words of Goliath, fear is rampant and spreads like a bad rash with every negative report.  I am not totally sure how the devil has convinced the church that he is more powerful than God, but we seem to have swallowed the bait whole.  Yes, satan is a formidable opponent, but he is also destined to the depths and ultimately defeated and he knows this better than we do!  He roars a lot, we listen a lot and it is about time for the Body to remember who it is that has its back and to take captive the thoughts that have us scampering for cover like a cockroach on cake once the light gets flipped on.

Where is our faith?  Where is our trust?  Where is our God?

We need to develop some serious spiritual spine or get some major deliverance.


Categories: Uncategorized