Showing posts from March, 2021

"It's Not a Heaven-or-Hell Issue"

"It's not a Heaven-Hell issue ..." Abraham : "I know that God told me to leave my extended family and not take them with me , but I can bring Lot. It's okay. It's not a Heaven-or-Hell issue." Lot's wife : " the angel asked us not to look back at Sodom , but I'm going to ignore that commandment. It's not part of the salvation plan: it's not a Heaven-or-Hell issue anyway." Aaron & Miriam : " we can murmur against Moses . I know he's the man of God, but he's our little brother and we disagreed all the time growing up. I can't imagine there'll be repercussions: it's not a matter of Heaven-or-Hell." The 10 spies : " we don't have to cross over into the promised land here and right now . We're safe, and we're free. Anyway, Moses is just a man, and this is not a Heaven-or-Hell issue." Moses : " God told me to speak to the rock and not strike the rock , but I'm going to do

2 License Applications

2 men were applying for ministerial license. They arrived to meet the ministerial board with applications in hand, ready to answer some questions and get started with their publicly-accepted callings. I'll call the first man "Brother Rivers" . He was quiet. His application was full of surprises . First off, he had backslid early in life, and only recently had he returned. This was not the biggest issue - many men find repentance and good full ministries after such things. The larger issue was what he did right before all of this.  You see, Brother Rivers had a criminal record ; he was guilty of a very serious offense that would've carried a long sentence. Worse still - he ran from the authorities trying to bring him to justice. Even worse - it WORKED! He successfully avoided consequences to his criminal actions for decades of his life. He hid from justice, and now should the board license him? This was going to be a tough meeting. As for the second license applicant,

Wounded by a Previous Storm

A few years ago, I was at a friend’s house in Clawson, Michigan. He was hosting a fellowship party there after a Friday night youth meeting. As we stood talking in his backyard that evening, he pointed to a tree. "See that broken branch there?" I looked, and high up on the tree, a branch was broken off. You could see the jagged bark and wood where something had torn away. He said, "that branch fell one night this winter and knocked out the power to my house." I asked what made it fall. "That's the interesting part. There was no storm that night. Nothing we could see the night it fell. We think a storm a few weeks prior must have compromised it." I posed to him: "so a storm from weeks prior – wind, lightning, and elements had done something to that branch?" He replied, "yes. It held up for several weeks, but eventually it fell." No current storm had made that branch to fall: it was wounded by a previous storm . For a time, it endured