Tag Archives: heart

#wheresHISwindow?

#wheresmywindow. That’s the recent hashtag trend from disgruntled airlines passengers. They are supposed to have a window seat, but they find themselves next to a wall with no window. In some cases, passengers even paid extra for a window seat. So they express their displeasure on social media…with #wheresmywindow!

Of course, we all know the problem. In an effort to increase profit, airlines cram more passengers onto planes. But they can’t change the size of the plane or the location of the windows. So they add more rows; and when they do, some passengers are off-center from the windows. In some cases, there is no window near them at all.

Personally, I like the aisle. Despite the danger of being hit in the knee with the beverage cart, the smaller window seat is no fun at 6’3”. But, in all fairness, I understand the anger. If you want a window, and you paid extra for it, you don’t want a wall!

I wonder though, if most people don’t do the same thing as the airlines. We claim we are giving window seats, with a view of our hearts, to loved ones and to God. But there’s usually a wall there.

We cram our lives full of things that push others into a seat that has no view of our hearts, our minds, our very souls. We don’t do it maliciously; we are just trying to maximize our efficiency. And we get so busy that we lose focus on things that really matter.

We would do well to remember that we do better with windows than walls. When I give brothers and sisters a window seat, they can help me know when I am off course; they can pray for me; and they can help me with my sins (Galatians 6:1; James 5:16).

God, of course, sees everything, regardless. But He prefers it when we purposely give Him the view, admitting our faults and asking Him to watch over our souls. Give Him the window seat; after all, He paid for it by the blood of Christ.

#HISwindowseat

Dying For A Selfie vs. Dying To Selfie

selfie in carThe Selfie. Harmless self-promotion? Or deadly danger? You decide! Up until recently, I would have said Selfies were mostly harmless, but maybe I was wrong.

Lately, the headlines are getting worse: “Couple Killed After Falling From Cliff While Taking Selfie,” “Train Selfie Kills Three Indian Students,” “15 Year Old Dies Taking Selfie In Front of Train,” etc. And the most recent? A Selfie was blamed for a plane crash!

That’s right. Based on information found on a GoPro camera at the crash site, the determination was made that the pilot of a small plane probably caused his death and a passenger’s, all because he was distracted…while taking Selfies.

Now, Selfie-danger isn’t new. In Greek myths, a young man named Narcissus was so in love with his own reflection in the water that he was unable to stop staring at himself. He ultimately drowned and was turned into a flower. Like Narcissus, some people are so enamored with themselves that they ignore the dangers around them. Like Narcissus, they would rather die because of a Selfie than die to Selfie.

What does dying to Selfie look like? Glad you asked. Take a look at Luke 9:23-24:

And [Jesus] was saying to them all, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake, he is the one who will save it.”

Jesus is the perfect example. He wasn’t into self-promotion, and He always put the Kingdom first.

I’m not against using “Selfies” to capture memorable moments. This message isn’t really even about photos. But it is about your heart. And each day we take “Selfies” of our hearts and post them online…no, not Facebook…but in the Book of Life.

My question is, “Does your record promote self or show you following Him?”

If you follow Jesus, and die to selfish needs and desires, He promises the abundant life. But if you insist on Selfie first…well, I hope the danger was worth the shot.

A Heart To Make Things Right

Alex Collins, HuntingThe Chester County Sheriff’s department runs a program to take kids hunting and fishing as a reward for good behavior. The program is meant to keep kids out of trouble by getting them interested in the outdoors. When 9-year-old, Alex Collins, learned on Facebook about a contest to get selected for the program, he was ecstatic…he had never been hunting, he had no one to take him, and he desperately wanted to go.

So Alex wrote a letter asking to be chosen, and his mother went to the sheriff’s office to deliver it. But when she arrived, the Sheriff’s office said there wasn’t a contest. The problem? It was the wrong Chester County Sheriff’s department! You see, the information Alex had seen on Facebook was for Chester County, South Carolina, not Pennsylvania where Alex lives. Alex was heartbroken!

It turns out, though, that the two Chester County Sheriffs are friends who met at a conference last year. They got on the phone, and made Alex’s dream come true. Donations poured in from all over the country, the Pennsylvania Sheriff’s Department chipped in to get Alex to SC, and the South Carolina Sheriff’s department chipped in to get him his gear and take him hunting. And, as of yesterday, the news reports that Alex is having a great time!

Chester County SheriffsNow, there is no confusing the two Sheriffs on the outside. One is a self-described, short, white, female,   “Yankee,” while the other is a tall, black, male, Southerner! But on the inside, they both had a heart to make things right for Alex. So a heartbreaking misunderstanding turned into an “Awesome” day!

Usually misunderstandings don’t work out very well. People misread signs and instructions every day. Consequences range from minor inconvenience to major damage. And sometimes misunderstandings lead to spiritual destruction.

In the Garden of Eden, Adam & Eve were harmed by mistaking bad advice for good. In Jeremiah 23, many people misread the signs and thought peace was coming, an error which led to their destruction. In Mark 12:24, Jesus told the Sadducees that they were in grave error about the resurrection because they had misread scripture.

Thankfully, for those who hear His voice today, there is still time. God made arrangements to overcome all our bad decisions and misunderstandings of the past if we will just accept the gospel of Christ today. He has paid for our trip to Heaven with the blood of Jesus because He has a heart to make things right. There is so much misleading information out there; don’t be fooled! Look to the Word of God today!

“…we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not as pleasing men, but God who examines our hearts” (1 Thessalonians 2:4).

Amputee Gets Brain Transplant?

Brain transplant? Seriously? Well, not quite yet. But a recent story about an amazing development through Johns Hopkins got me thinking about it. 26-year-old, Sgt. Brendan Marrocco, made history by having the first successful double arm transplant in history! Sgt. Marrocco’s arms and legs had been blown off in a roadside bomb in Iraq. Incredibly, he is now making history with real, human arms from an anonymous donor who had offered his body for use upon his death.

Attaching the donor’s arms to a new body was very complicated! The bones were attached, then the muscles, the tendons, the blood vessels, arteries and veins. But that isn’t enough. The body is smart – too smart. It recognizes that those arms don’t belong to it. In order to prevent the body from attacking the new appendages with anti-bodies, they introduced a sneaky solution. They took bone marrow cells from the donor’s spine and injected them into Marrocco, fooling his body into thinking the arms were his!

As difficult as that surgery is, God’s children face far more difficult transplants. First, God promises to give “a new heart and a new spirit” (Ezekiel 36:26). Then comes a real challenge, a transplanted mind! It is for those who turn away from a life dedicated to sin, amputate the old mind, and adopt a new life dedicated to righteousness. Paul writes that “we have the mind of Christ” (2 Corinthians 2:16).

Was Paul proposing something like a brain transplant? Is it possible to replace my thoughts with Christ’s so drastically that His mind is in my head? Something along these lines happens when a believer submits in baptism to His death, burial, and resurrection. The problem? From day one, the old, sinful self, starts rejecting the “Christ-mind.” The solution? Inject some of him daily: His words, His life, & His teaching. Grow in such a way that your body thinks His mind is yours. You will be even more thrilled with the result than Marrocco is with his new arms!