Friday, September 16, 2011

A Laundry Room Talk with God

I just had an interesting conversation with God in my laundry room. Why He cares to join me in my messy laundry room while I perform boring tasks, I don't know. But He does. And the conversation went something like this...

Me: "Lord, I need to find that white shirt to make sure there's no spot left on it before I dry it. Help me to find it."

I search through mounds of wet white laundry to no avail. Where is that shirt?

Me: "Okay, Lord, I know you're in control, but I just need to find that shirt. I don't want it to be permanently stained if I dry it."

I search a little harder.

Me: "I can't find it and I really need to! I know it isn't your fault Lord, and you are in control. But please help me to find it! I'm getting frustrated here."

God: "Maybe I don't want you to find it."

Me: That can't be God talking. God wouldn't say that.

I then search piece by piece, even pulling open the sheets to see if it is entangled in one.

Me: "Now this just doesn't make sense!"

God: "Maybe it's my will that you don't find it."

Me: "But that's just silly! Why would you want me to ruin a perfectly good shirt? What a waste! I know I put it in the washer and now it's vanished! This doesn't make any sense and I can't accept something that doesn't make sense as your will."

God: "Do you hear what you just said? Listen to yourself. Don't you trust me? You know that what I do doesn't always make sense to you."


"Okay. Fine. I don't understand it at all, but there's nothing I can do anyway. I give up. . . I trust you."

I throw the armloads of stubborn laundry into the dryer, close it, and stand up. . . only to discover the mysteriously missing shirt had fallen under me and was right there on the floor. At that moment, I hear the garbage truck outside and run to take my overflowing can out to the street. I would likely not have heard the truck, had I found that shirt earlier because I was headed for the shower right after that menial task.

And here's the (probably obvious) lesson: If we can't trust Him to help us with the little things in our days, like something as insignificant as laundry, will we trust Him when the big things come? Listen when God talks to you in the laundry room. He's saying something important right there through all the routine daily monotony, too.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

A Loving Judge

I've been contemplating lately the idea of God's mercy versus his justice. We all fully embrace the concept of His mercy and love. We seem to have no philosophical issue with that. Yet, it seems as though His justice is forgotten and even defamed in our culture today. But why? None of us vacillate in demanding justice when it benefits us, when it rights those wrongs done to us. We are satisfied when the rapist is sent to jail. We are mollified when the child abuser is locked away to pay for his crimes. Would anyone argue that demanding retribution for such crimes against innocent victims is unloving or unkind?

But God? His name is treated as a curse; His holy nature and character brought to trial by those who despise Him; His children hated, tortured, and martyred. Does God deserve justice? Does the Perfect One who breathed the very life into us deserve recompense? Or do we think we are more important than God, holier than God? It is permissible for us to demand justice. We deserve it. But God is supposed to be all love to all people in all circumstances...and nothing more. He is expected to just overlook all the wrongs and offenses and turn a deaf ear to His children's cries and a blind eye to the evildoers who mock His holy name.

I don't want a one-dimensional God who is unable to impart justice when such justice is the only right course of action. I want the God who both embraces and condemns. This is the God who makes sense, the God of the Bible who loves enough to judge...and yet is always willing to extend mercy even to those who fall under His judgment. That is the God that I love.

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Profitability of Truth

I enjoy a good debate, not because I enjoy proving myself right, but because I love truth. I sometimes engage in debate to proclaim and champion the truth and other times to actually search for and find the truth of a matter. I don't always know for certain that I am right, but the process of proving or disproving something is a pursuit that can be very fulfilling when you are truly seeking truth...or seeking to proclaim it to others.

So, I am not intimidated by someone pointing out errors in my logic...or the fact that I'm a complete idiot on a topic! In fact, have you ever noticed that those whom the world labels as weak or foolish are usually representatives of the truth? So, call me foolish! Because truth is worth becoming foolish for. Truth is worth insult and intimidation. Truth is worth the struggle to set it free because in the end, it is The Truth that sets us free!

"And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32

"But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, so that no man may boast before God." 1 Corinthians 1:27-29