Archive for Devotional Thought

Memories

Posted in 1 Timothy, Devotional Thought with tags , , , on June 24, 2008 by Lee

I am always amazed how smells, sights, sounds stir memories in me. The other day, Rhonda, the kids and I are in Mr. Boots – the smell of leather, the sight of pairs of boots lining the walls, the sound of the bell “ding” as people enter and leave the store all take me back to my childhood of being in that very store. My grandmother would take us there for school clothes and the occasional pair of boots for the start of school. I wore many of pair of wranglers from there and a few other stores through most of my school days.

I am at Kids Kamp with my home church last week. The combination of running around to exhaustion, the heat, and the smell of wet grass bring back vivid memories of two-a-day football practices in high school.

Today, I am sitting in a hospital room with my son Micah. The sound of the IV pumping, the smell of a disinfectant in the air, the sight of stainless steel door knobs bring back the memory of being here with Micah only 3 months ago. This stay should only be precautionary; hopefully, we are going home in the morning.

Memory is a powerful thing. It vividly records the very experiences of our life which shape the future. Much of these recordings are stored away in the vastness of our memories. A lot like old photo albums boxed and put in a closet or attic. Some of our recordings will never be replayed. But others are awakened from their stored slumber, triggered by the right word, sound, smell or sight.

Paul seems to have one of these flashbacks. He is writing a letter to his disciple Timothy. In the 1 Timothy 1:12, Paul begins to talk of his past; he mentions who he used to be and what he did while he was this person.

I wonder what triggered this thought. Was it a sound from outside, the smell of dust in the air, or was it the sight of someone’s tunic. Was it a specific memory? Was he reminded of the day Stephen was stoned? I don’t know.

Paul talked about who he was, the memory aroused by something. Yet as the playback reminded him of who he was it also reminded him of the new person he had become. It aroused the playback of God’s saving grace lavished upon him, of God’s mercy upon him giving him reason to rejoice and celebrate. He was an example of what God can do in the life of “the worst of sinners.”

What has God saved you from? How has God changed your life? Make a list – let it give you cause for rejoicing as you consider the work of grace God has done in your own life.

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Trust – Part II

Posted in Devotional Thought, Disobedience, Jonah, Trust with tags , , on October 24, 2007 by Lee

tight rope walker “We have to be able to trust in order to have good relationships on any level. The same is true of a relationship with God. We have to be willing to trust.”

I want to use the lives of two people to talk about trust – Jonah and Daniel. I see elements of their life stories painting a great picture of trust that can teach us to trust God and others.

Let’s start with Jonah. Jonah may not be one you think of when it comes to an example of trust. Honestly, he is a great example of what not to do. But I think Jonah’s life story (the part recorded for us) can teach us some vailable things about trust.

The first chapter begins with “the word of Lord” coming to Jonah saying, “Arise and go to Nineveh.” God gives Jonah a very clear command to go. Jonah delibrately arises and goes the other direction (Jonah 1:1-3). Why would he do this?

Jonah Running

Chapter 1 does not give us any reason why Jonah turns and goes the opposite direction of where God wants him to go. (Chapter 4 gives some indication to the ‘why’ of Jonah’s fleeing “from the presence of the Lord.”) But we are not completely clear on the motive – but I think we can gather some real indications from the story.

I think Jonah’s disobedience is rooted is his unwillingness to trust God. This is the principle to see: Disobedience is rooted in unwillingness to trust God.

Often, areas of disobedience in my life are chained to my disbelief that God’s plan is better than my own.

More to come