Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Must be Tuesday

Why do I bother? Typically, I have a sense I have not accomplished much of anything. Yet, it remains something I am compelled to continue to do because the alternative would be more than a sense of doing nothing but the reality of having done nothing.

I know I am not commanded to fast. I know fasting is not a guarantee or the quick (given the topic I chose this as the best word choice) track to spirituality. Up until about eight months ago fasting had never been a regular part of my life in my thirty years in the Lord. Then, from what I can only describe as an inner cry for my family, I purposed a time of fasting. I determined to declare a fast of four days. I will say my sustenance was limited to water. I can not remember if I had any coffee (black, no cream, no sugar) but I honestly can't remember.

What I cannot say, I am ashamed to admit, is that I feasted heavily on the word. Yes, the word was very much on my mind. Hunger pretty much subsided after the second day. Sitting with my family or co-workers during mealtime was not a struggle. I maintained, as I determined I would, my daily two-mile walk regimen. My dedicated time of prayer was not such as I could commend to anyone.

So, as I reflect on that initial time of fasting what did I gain? I pose this question mainly to show yet another example of my (I may be the only one) problem thinking to think fasting is for gain. The fruit of my fasting is that the Spirit has started in me what has become a regular, weekly practice of dedicating a day of fasting unto the Lord. I accept the charge that this sounds pious, but I will stand by it that it is unto the Lord. I have learned through many experiences how God answers my pray and prayerful requests only to go undiscerned by me until much later. God is too good. How can I say that when I turned around one month and added a second day to my weekly fast? God knows. He knows whether it was from the perspective of God-did-you-not-see-did-you-not-hear or Oh-God-my-God.

I have an abiding conviction founded in Jesus. He was without a doubt the ultimate spiritual man. Still, he never claimed it. He never taught his disciples from the How-to-Be-Spiritual manual, but he did model it for them as for us. Yet, the most captivating aspect of Jesus is that with the exception of that purposeful 40 day fast in the wilderness everything he taught and demonstrated the life of a spiritual in the streets among men, not from a mountaintop refuge. I would rather stumble in the street than fall off a mountaintop.

I no more mention my fasting here as some achievement than I care to reveal that when co-workers ask why I am not eating. My tenuous, brief reply: "It's Tuesday." Should they inquire further I elaborate. Tuesday is coming and I am compelled to do _ something.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Holy Spirit

This is not intended as a scholarly or exhaustive study of this topic of the Holy Spirit. However, my interactions with so many atheists, Christians, Muslims and others reveals the lack of understanding on something so fundamental in the Christian's faith is often troubling and a spiritual shipwreck for some. My hope is you will find englightenment and courage to embolden you in the proclamation of your faith in the Lord Jesus.


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Love triumphs

"Science will win". It's juvenile and although he never says just what it is science wins Stephen Hawking knows the value of, and is not above using, a good cheer. This after stating the fundamental difference between religion and science: Religion is authority based, science observation and reason based.

Hawking (one could say scientists, but lets not) reveals some thinking on aliens much like that for which theists are mocked. Theists are mocked for making a human-like being they call God. Yet, he imagines (yes, that's the right word) human-like aliens and attributes to them the more violent and aggressive human-like qualities. How is this speculation in keeping with the ever higher ever-improving intelligence model of evolution? This is Hawking, an atheist, projecting on aliens the human behavior of aggression supposedly the by-product of religion and theists. Hawking sees alien life forms as the embodiment of not all that is human, just the negative, evil or worse, _ whatever bring harm for humans. Lets consider this possibility: The idea does not set well with Hawking to be upstaged by an alien life form which suddenly reveals the pitiful level of his intelligence. His daughter Lucy shows a more reasonable view.

Secondly, Hawking is familiar with the ridicule cast on theists as refusing to face the facts of reality. It does not sound true to form to hear Hawking advise man ought not be looking to make contact with alien life. An intelligent life form (humans) avoiding contact with intelligent alien life forms? How is that any different were a northernmost people on earth to avoid looking to contact any probable peoples in the southernmost part of the earth?

Hawking is undeniably quite knowledgeable in his field. Yes, science does work. However, he reveals a science which imagines freely and qualifies those imaginations as reasonable or logical. Furthermore, Hawking would just as soon science work at not working to search for or contact alien life forms. He reveals his lack of unbelief and faith, words shunned by scientists, so lets say he trifles the work of man (to say nothing of God) such that he has given up the fight before the battle even begins.

According to evolution an alien visit to earth would be like Columbus' visit to the Americas a catastrophe where the weak perish and the strong survive. Science, says Hawking, will win.

It is therefore no wonder that in the Hawking mindset an alien life not of this world which visited earth in human-form with human-like qualities should be rejected as was Jesus. He looked human. He acted human. He did not fulfill the human expectation of alien life forms of aggression and conquest. Jesus is the embodiment of the love God. Hawking advises his children: if you are lucky enough to find love, remember it is there and don't throw it away. He may not have been lucky enough to find it yet, but it's there to accept or to throw away.
For God so loved the world,
that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life

Love triumphs not in those who remember to reason and observe it at a distance, but in those who embrace it.