A Throwaway Life

What has been my driving force to live and witness for the Lord throughout my life? It began with messages like the following that I heard in every Thursday’s chapel from Dr. Percy Crawford during my four years at The King’s College. He was a man of God who literally gave every ounce of his strength to serve his Lord in his brief 58 years. I share excerpts with you.

“What’s the good of living to 70 or 80? Of course right now way up there in age just seems an eternity away. It sneaks up on you, and that time comes right along, moves right along, moves right in, whether you like it or not.
“Life is short. We should look at life in light of the ultimate of that which is sure to come which is death. In other words, when I get through with my life, and we look back, what has been the purpose, the motivating power in our lives, that caused us to spend our lives as we did?. . . .
. . . .“There’s nothing wrong with being a teacher or an engineer or a housewife. But my objective is to use these means to ultimately bring men and women to a knowledge of the Son of God. Use every avenue possible, every dollar you can lay your hands on. To me that’s life.
. . . .“And if you’re going to be a soldier of the cross of Christ, if you’re going to be called and answer his call, you’ve got to have the equipment down pat, and know the Word of God…Not an armchair critic of it. Not saying, ‘I believe that doctrine and this doctrine; this one I’m not quite sure of.’ But letting these things grip your heart and grip your soul.
. . . . “We’re not sold out. We’re not yielded. We haven’t got the vision. ‘Where there’s no vision the people perish.’ And they’re perishing by the carload! My prayer is that The King’s College will prepare you mentally in all of these various subjects and inoculate you and indoctrinate with the horrible fact of an everlasting hell, and that you may make decisions in life in the light of the ultimate of that which is sure to come so that when you’re through you can look back and say, ‘Lord, I loved you, and I failed you so miserably. But I threw down my life. I’ve thrown it away for you.’ What an honor! What a privilege! If The King’s College fails to do that, and to turn out men and women with that objective, we have failed. We’re simply another educational institution.”*

*Excerpted from A Thirst for Souls by Dan D. Crawford

“Those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars.” Daniel 12:3
Are you motivated today to reach out to friends and neighbors to share the gospel?

What’s On That Truck?

I couldn’t believe my eyes. “Body piercing saved my life!” There it was. Painted on the back window of a pickup truck in the parking lot at the county fair.

I sneered, Has anyone ever assumed that punching holes in your body could save you or help you?

Then I looked again and saw the picture behind those words: A rough-hewn brown cross.

Body piercing isn’t new. The prophet Isaiah knew about it, for he says, “He was pierced for our transgressions and by his wounds we are healed.” (53:3) On imperial orders, the Romans soldiers fulfilled that prophecy about 750 years later.

Yes, I began to consider another kind of piercing, the cruel piercings done on a rugged hill.

As nails ripped through the wooden symbol of death for transgressors, the nails also ripped through muscles and bones and splattered blood–his holy blood. A Roman spear sliced his side, the side of the kindest and only sin-free man who ever lived.

After his resurrection, Jesus showed his disciples his pierced hands and feet, proof of his identity. And we’ll recognize him the same way, not by the crowns he wears, but by the scars he bears.

We may boast in the status and “in thing” of piercing our nose, tongue, navel, and other body parts. But these offer nothing more than moments of attention and fleeting gratification. Christ’s body piercing does not give us status and those fleeting moments. Instead, because of the piercing of his hands, feet, and side, we have a Savior–for eternity.

Yes, definitely, body piercing saved my life.

Haiku Images

I thought you might appreciate reading through the Haiku Cluster that the judges thought were worthy of first place winner in the competition. All of the haiku spring from the Scriptures related as listed.

Appropriate for the Easter season is “To say ‘I love you’ God sent a cross.” The truth that we are co-heirs with the eternal Godhead is incomprehensible, but the Scriptures certainly remind us how rich we are in Christ.

If a haiku or two moves you and you would like to share your thoughts, I would love to meditate on them with you.
A HAIKU CLUSTER
I bequeath to you,                                                                   Romans 8:17a
every sunrise I’ve painted,
all originals. -God

Adam, while you slept,                                                           Genesis 2:21-22
God slipped Eve into your bed,
then he left, smiling.

To say “I love you,”                                                                  John 19:17-18
we send flowers or a card,
but God sent a cross.

Five little fingers                                                                       Luke 2:7
squeeze young Mary’s nose and face
as God lies on straw.

Often mothers ’ prayers                                                         I Samuel 1:27
mend the broken jars of clay
they molded from birth.

Silent, by a grave,                                                                   II Corinthians 1:4
arm around a friend, healing
a hole in the heart.

Before life’s bookends                                                         Amos 4:12b
squeeze away your last-held breath,
prepare for closure.

Newtown, Connecticut

O, little children,

   may we find you in heaven,

      laughing and loving.

This haiku, written by my 33-year-old grandson to share his grief over the loss of the dear children at the elementary school in Newtown reminds me of two contrasting Scriptures. First, “Herod, realizing he had been outwitted by the Magi [and not caring about children], gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity two years old and under. A voice, weeping and great mourning, refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” Second, Jesus saying, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Unless you accept God’s kingdom in the simplicity of a child, you’ll never get in. He took them in his arms, put his hands on them, and fervently gave them his divine favor.” In doing so, he personified the Hebrew customary act of the father blessing the children.

Jesus, showing his caring attitude toward children, used them as examples of, not their innocency or humility, but their spirit of openness to receive and their dependence on others for daily provisions and care.

This simple but profound warning, unless we accept the kingdom of God with the spirit of a child’s dependence and abandonment, we will eternally miss out on that “laughing and loving” in heaven.