Monday, July 27, 2015

On the Mountaintop? (Revisit)

© by Gailen Mapes, All Rights Reserved
This is another of those images that evokes interesting thought trains.  It’s Scotts Bluff, in Nebraska.  And the fog has set in.  I looked at this and immediately my mind leapt to the various concepts people create of our relationships with God.  Many create a mental image of God sitting on the mountaintop, aloof from what goes on down here, undisturbed by the fog because He has no real interest in our circumstances, and wants to keep a distance and mystery in our experience of Him.  But is that myth or reality?

Saturday, July 25, 2015

On My Own - Part 5 (Revisit)

The Dark Traveler

Mark 4:24  And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.

We said , last time, that there was a way to avoid being run aground in spiritual shallows.  We’ve spent quite a bit of time dealing with how not to remain spiritually safe.  Now it’s time to look at how to safely navigate life.  The verse that starts the last post and this one summarizes it all.  But it's more detailed than that.  So, let's take a look.

Monday, July 20, 2015

On My Own - Part 4 (Revisit)

The Dark Traveler
Mark 4:24  And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.

In the beginning post of this series, we said that the photograph at the beginning of each post in the series is the inspiration.  And it is.  Mary Kay, the copyright holder, created a stark and compelling message with her photo of "The Dark Traveler".

Whether we’re intentionally false teachers, whether we preach incorrectly because we learned incorrectly, or if we’re part of the flock and misled by either of those types of leaders, we still have a way toward a different result than we see in that image.  So, look closely at the picture.  And let’s weave a storyline or two into that image and see where they take us.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

On My Own - Part 3 (Revisit)

The Dark Traveler
1Timothy 4:16  Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee. 

In the previous segment, we talked about false teachers.  False by choice.  False because their focus was on themselves and their own gain.  Instead of on God. But that kind of teacher or leader is rare. Though, by their own need for wealth, power and attention, more in the spotlight than others.  So, what are we likely to see in most leaders?

Monday, July 13, 2015

On My Own - Part 2 (Revisit)

The Dark Traveler
Isaiah 56:10-11  His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber.  Yea, they are greedy dogs which can never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand: they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter.

In Part 1, which really was an introduction to this series, we talked about man going astray and still considering the path we take as being clean, error free, righteous.  That dichotomy between reality and mental understanding comes from misunderstanding.  Either intentional or because of what we’ve been taught.  And what we’re mistaught is either out of honest error by the teacher or intentional deception.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

On My Own - Part 1 (Revisit)

We've been resharing a series of posts that have been inspired by photographs from a variety of photographers and artists on Google+.  Some also share on Facebook, others don't.  But God put it on my heart to edit and repost these for two reasons.  The thoughts evoked by the images are important.  And it's an opportunity to highlight the image creators, again.  They're that good. We're far from done with that.  Some honed my focus on a single thought.  Others, like today's image, took me to a broader subject that requires a multi-part series.

You could probably write several novels and “how to” self help books based on this photograph.  It’s by Mary Kay and titled “The Dark Traveler”.  We appreciate Mary having allowed us to use it,. When it was first posted, Mary mentioned in the discussion that the ship had been stuck there for a very long time and was a well known sight.  And that added dimension to my original thought, when I saw it.

Monday, July 6, 2015

What's the Score?

image used under Creative Commons license, courtesy of, photo by Joel Solomon
The title fits because of several things.  First, when I juggled things around to post about the shootings in Charleston, SC, I apparently tossed one of the items I was juggling high enough that it didn't come back down on July 6, 2015. What's the score on that one?

That mistake left room for this post to cover a couple of interesting topics, one of which is a joy to talk about.  The other, not so much.  Let's start with the fun one and go from there.

The picture to the left is from the 2012 Summer Olympics.  But, by now, you should recognize the two ladies with the flag.  That's Hope Solo and Carli Lloyd, both essential parts of the 2015 US women's soccer team, winners of the women's World Cup.  Congratulations to all the ladies on the team!  It was a spectacular win and it got me thinking about the lessons they have for the church.  Because there is some sound Biblical principles that were displayed on the road to that win.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Hard Knocks? (Revisit)

We're continuing from our repost of "A Far Off Goal".  Our illustration for both reshares is a picture of the Queen Mary, now permanently docked in California, taken from across the harbor by Neil Kremer.  Thanks again to him for allowing us to use it.  Even the gray coloring fits the thought of the two posts.

We talked about Saul in our last post and we’re not quite done with him.  One of the pastors I work with told me that there have been times when he’s gone to God and gotten no answer.  He took that as his answer.  Compare that to Saul’s reaction that drove him to the spiritualist.