Thursday, March 01, 2007

A Better Return


Good day to you wherever you find yourself. Thanks for stopping by, I hope your time spent here will encourage and inspire you, or at the very least make you stop and think; all noble things in my estimation.

So, I find myself shaking my head once again at the human tendency to be critical and complaining. Honestly, I think it’s a hold-over from our childhood. As infants, it was our primary way of communication. A baby cries when it’s hungry or tired or gassy or whatever. It’s telling mom or dad, “Hey, help me out here!” As children, many of us realized that a temper tantrum helped us to get our way, or at least some attention. But do we really think that as adults, complaining and whining is an effective method of changing whatever situation it is that is rubbing us the wrong way?

God bless America for its freedoms, the greatest country on earth when it comes to individual human rights, period. Sure we have a host of failings we could discuss at length, but I’ll pass. The point I’m making is that we have the freedom to spend our time protesting if we choose. We can protest anything, march in the streets, make banners, shout catchy rhymes, etc. For my money, all that looks a bit like whining and complaining. May I suggest another approach?

I prefer a more pro-active strategy. And I must confess, it’s not an original idea. The phrase "It's better to light a candle than curse the darkness" is a very slight alteration on the less common Chinese proverb "'Don't curse the darkness - light a candle." The advice given is "if something is wrong, do something about it rather than complain." And while the Chinese may have summed it up in nice phrase (they do that often, don’t they?), I believe God Himself began this notion.

How often, when God didn’t like something, did He do something about it? Think back now……man needs a partner – make a woman. World filled with sin – send a flood, save a few and start over. It goes on and on, really. But what about today? I haven’t seen too many burning bushes, or entire seas parting so I can escape, have you? What about the miracle stuff now? How does God change those things that need changing? The answer my friend is staring at you in the mirror.

God has chosen to inhabit each one of us, if we’ll let Him. That’s the whole “believing that you need a Savior, accepting Jesus as yours, and inviting the Holy Spirit to live in you” thing, and it’s true. Consider the countless people who, in the power of the Holy Spirit, set aside their selfishness to live for others and make a difference in their lives. At this moment, there are untold people around the world who have left the comfort of life in these United States to live and work in impoverished areas just so those around them would know that Jesus loves them and cares about them. That simple gesture gives a human heart fuel to live and hope to carry on in places where your worth is tied to what you can produce for someone else. It changes lives.

Now, bring it back home for a minute. There is something that bugs each of us, something we find wrong. It may be something that impacts us in a very personal way or something that affects a whole bunch of folks. And while, I believe in the power of prayer, and that God does intervene in our lives on our behalf (I’ve experienced it personally), I believe he wants us to get involved. To be the hands and feet of Jesus to a world that needs Him.

Small example: Let’s say that a particular road I travel is littered with garbage and debris that I find unattractive. I can go to City Hall and voice my displeasure and hope something gets done, or I can spend the same amount of time rolling up my sleeves and picking up garbage. I promise you that the greater impact will be made doing the latter. And in the process I might just have the opportunity to share my faith and God’s love with someone. A very simplistic example, but perhaps you get the point.

God is still in the life changing, miracle business. I don’t know why He wants to use you and me in the process, but I know He does. If we’ll let Him, He will do things through us that will bring hope and healing to broken lives, including our own. I’m thinking that’s a better return for our effort than complaining will ever get. What about you?


Peace……

2 Comments:

At 3:09 PM, Blogger Shawn said...

Hey, found your blog refreshing to read! Thanks, it's nice to read something without having to overt my eyes, lol!

 
At 7:16 AM, Blogger Tom said...

Thanks for stopping by.

 

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