Sitting, Running, Giving

The bible makes me laugh so much of the time….

Many of us have read or heard the story about Jesus feeding the five-thousand.  For those who haven’t, check out John 6.  The story is in Matthew, Mark and Luke also if you want to compare.

Anyhoo…

The people gather, they want something to eat and three types emerge.

There were five thousand men plus women and children.  Those aren’t the three types.  It tells how the Lord told them to sit down.  So the men sat.  The fact that we don’t hear about the women sitting is what makes me laugh.

We’ve all been there.  The guys sit down to watch the game while the children are climbing the walls, causing trouble.  The moms are running around after them saying, “put that down, quit hitting your brother, don’t eat that…”

So there were three groups, the ones sitting, the ones running.  But, then there was Jesus and by association, his disciples.  They were giving.

I have been the one sitting.  Waiting for something amazing to happen.  Looking for God to move so that I can see for myself that He is real.  Not lifting a finger except to put food in my mouth.

I have been the one running.  Chasing my tail.  Busy with so many things, so many good things.  Mainly just running.

I want to be someone that is giving.  Giving Jesus the little that I have, all that is me.  Letting Him break it and bless it.  And then giving to those that God puts in my life.

It’s easy to get caught up in sleeping, apathy, checking out.  Just as easy to be caught in the race to prove myself, to follow the chaos, chasing dreams that evaporate before I can put my hand on them.

But nothing compares to being a vessel.  Being the one that God calls to touch and bless others.

We are not consumed 

I have been praying over some difficult situations lately.  There are several things that are weighing on my heart.  There are so many things that we’ve lost, so many dreams unfulfilled.  I am aware of hurting families, lonely singles, broken marriages, the addicted, the depressed, the discouraged.

At my job lately, I’ve been working a lot of hours.  Sometimes I am amazed at the strength God has provided.  It’s like I am a machine that just goes full steam, nonstop.  I did twelve hours yesterday and didn’t feel all that tired.  The ride home from work reminded me that I am not a machine.  Machines don’t get back pain or have trouble walking into the house.

I thought of the verse:

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” (‭Lamentations‬ ‭3‬:‭22-24‬ NIV)

I just kept repeating the phrase, “we are not consumed.”  

Broken hearts consume us, but we are not consumed.  Sickness consumes us, but we are not consumed.  Hatred, bitterness, fear, sadness consume us, but we are not consumed.

How can we go through life, friends dying, hope crushed, some facing pain and sickness, torture, catastrophe and not be consumed?  It doesn’t even matter if you are a Christian or not.  Living begs the question, “how are we not consumed?”

And maybe you feel like you are consumed.  I feel like that sometimes.  “I can’t take anymore.  If one more thing weighs me down, I’ll die.”

But, I AM NOT DEAD!

I can take more.  I can still move.  I will take one more breath, think one more thought.  You will too.

All because of the love of God.  

As I say this, I see a picture that was posted recently.  The guns of Isis warriors pointed at and poking a small child.  I do not believe that child lived, and it’s last moments were horror.  That is an environment where God’s love has been shoved aside, where man has fully denied God’s heart and run after evil.  That is what would consume us all if God’s love was removed.

I will not accept lethargy, complacency or apathy.  Depression and despondency will not rule my days.  I will wait for the Lord and live in such a way that I bring honor to Him. 

Because I am not consumed.