FIVE FEET of snow

IMG_7612FIVE FEET of snow

That’s what I see when I look out the window today. The weather is expected to add another 4 inches before the day is over.

Let’s be clear, this area of Canada did not receive 5 feet of snow this year at one time. In fact, it hasn’t received that much snow over the course of the winter. So, why do I see 5 feet out the window?

Very simple, we call them snow drifts. The wind blows the snow and when the snow reaches an obstacle, like a building, it starts to build up. The more wind, the higher the potential for a snow bank. It’s very common around the world in wintery areas.

IMG_7611In fact, I’ve seen many snow banks this week even underneath drive thru awnings, and other canopies intended to provide a barrier from the weather, and clear walkways. One rather large canopy had over a foot of snow underneath it this morning when I walked through, even though it never any snow fall directly or vertically down into its protected zone. Yet with each breeze, the wind blew snowflake upon snowflake into this “protected” area and influenced its new look, one flake at a time. In these “protected” zones, people still had to walk with great attention to their surroundings, so as not to slip.

Like snow, we can see a similar result with the Gospel. By yourself, you might feel your impact on the world is little. However, when we all put in a “little” effort, the impact can become large. Eventually, our influences, one witness at a time, can add up to a tremendous effect on the world as a whole. We can create a “Gospel-bank.”

Even in “protected” areas of religious freedom (such as workplaces and schools), our witness can slowly build upon others’ witnessing, and impact to an extent that we would never be able to do alone.

Let your light shine and be that little patch of snow (Gospel) that brings somebody to be more cautious about how they “walk” in this world. You might have more of an impact than you think!

It’s bitterly cold out there!

After a week of cold temperatures in Greenville, some people have decided that they are just not cut out for cold weather. On the other hand, some have decided that it’s “not that bad.” I was in the latter category until just hours ago.

With the wind chills in the single digits, I was cold, but not necessarily overwhelmed by the colder than normal temperatures. That all changed yesterday evening as I went outside in the -20 degree wind chill. In addition to the biting cold, the high winds which blew sleet and frozen snow into my face did a great job of convincing me that I’m done with cold winters. I’d rather move even further south to avoid the biting cold of northern winter air.

However, none of this has anything to do with us being Christian. Except one thing: the exact opposite. You see there will be a day in the future (actually an eternity of days) when those that fail to accept the Lord will have to endure similarly unpleasant times. Truth is – they won’t have to endure biting cold temperatures, but instead, they will endure fiercely boiling temperatures in the lake of fire as described in the book of Revelation.

Now first of all, I don’t know why anyone would want to live (and choose to live) in such a northern climate where they have to endure biting cold winters. However, they can choose to bundle up, stay out of the cold, stay indoors, and a variety of other methods to stay warm.

Yet, those in the future will have no option afforded to them to avoid the lake of fire. That choice must come now, while they are on earth. The choice to choose Jesus (and Heaven) versus choosing satan (and Hell) is really not a hard choice to make. The problem is, most people don’t make an “active” choice. They think by putting off the choice until sometime later in life, that they have avoided making a choice. “I’ll think about it” – they say. Unfortunately, that’s a major problem. Because you see, it’s not a matter of choosing Jesus or satan. It’s a matter of accepting Jesus or failing to accept Him. By not accepting the Lord, one has rejected Him (which is choosing satan by default).

Don’t let someone you know fail to make the right choice now, while they still have time!

Am I supposed to read something here?

Today, I was asked by someone “Am I supposed to read something here?” The question was posed with a finger point in the direction of my desktop Bible. The individual, who claims to be an atheist, said “I’ve seen your Bible open to the same passage for two weeks, what is so important to read on this page?” (I’ve paraphrased the individual).

The answer is a resounding “YES!” You are supposed to read ALL of it! Not just that page.

Moral of the story: We sometimes find ourselves impacted by what other people do, whether we want to be or not.

In this case, a simple, quiet, yet strategically placed Bible on the corner of my cubicle caught the attention of a pronounced atheist.

It goes to show that atheists, no matter how vocal, have an interest and even a desire, I presume, to be told the Word of God. I believe that many pronounced atheists are not really atheists (defined: don’t believe in God), but are really more agnostic (defined: they haven’t really given God much thought, or don’t care whether God exists or not).

It is therefore our job, as Christians, to care for them. Not only in the meaning of care about God for them, but care about THEM for their soul’s sake.

You may be in a situation where you are not allowed to “witness.” That’s fine, I am too. But that doesn’t mean you have to keep your religious beliefs to yourself. There are plenty of ways to witness, like having a Bible visible in your workspace, wearing Christian jewelry (like a cross), or other things like posting your favorite Scripture passage on your Facebook account, or merely sticking a Jesus fish on the back of your car.

There are so many inconspicuous ways to witness that are legal, that we have NO EXCUSE for not witnessing. What can you change in your life today to be more visible to those who “don’t care,” and start caring for them?

When you wish upon a star:

As the wintery weather approaches, I find myself (and many others) making wishes for a huge downfall of snow, just to enjoy the family outing that ensues led first by a late departure to work (if at all going in), sledding down the closest hill (no matter how small), building a snowman, and the annual snowball fight that seems to get everyone a little rowdy.

However, we should note that despite the lyrics…

“When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you” *

…dreams are rarely fulfilled. However, prayers are answered daily. Does that mean we should pray? I’m not saying we shouldn’t. God has many more important things to worry about. However, your prayer doesn’t have to be about snow today. It could be just a thankful prayer that God gave you your family to spend time with on this cold wintery day.

I thank God that I have such a wonderful family. And not just my wife and child, but my extended family, friends, and church. Amen!

*Lyrics by Leigh Harline and Ned Washington

Obedience

Then [Jesus] got into one of the boats, which was Simon’s and asked him to put out a little from the land. And He sat down and taught the multitudes from the boat. When He had stopped speaking, He said to Simon, “Launch out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch.” But Simon answered and said to Him, “Master, we have toiled all night and caught nothing; nevertheless at Your word I will let down the net.”  Luke 5:3-5

I am Simon. At least I think I am. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing.

Was Simon obedient at letting down the net, or was he stubborn and let the net down only after implying to Jesus that it was a futile attempt.

Did Simon just want to prove Jesus wrong? Or did he truly want to obey, and unfortunately let his mouth speak before thinking?

Too many times I open my mouth before I think what to say. Unfortunately, our hearts are quick to respond, and when our mouth doesn’t close, we can say things we shouldn’t.

I’m not sure where Simon’s heart was, and I’m not sure it matters.

What I do know is that when Jesus tells us something, we should obey. And just like our parents taught us – don’t back talk! Especially to God!

What is He asking you to do?

Jesus Who?

Jesus died over 2000 years ago.

Nobody has ever referred to Him as the “Late Jesus,” not even heathens.

Nowhere in history,

Nowhere has He ever been referred to in the past tense.

He IS the LIVING God! 

 

Pretty Cool, huh?!?!

 

(Thanks to Nana for forwarding this reminder to me.)