by Jim Hutson
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Remember when you were a kid and went to the pond. Maybe it was originally for fishing purposes, or swimming, or just to spend the day lazing away near some.....who am I kidding? We didn't ever just laze around a pond....well, I didn't. But, eventually, we would always windup tossing pebbles into the pond, trying to get them to skip....the biggest skipper had HUGE bragging rights.
Once again, God has thumped me on my noggin about how much I can relate to experiences in my past what He would have me do today. One stone can be infinitely larger than the actual mass, if tossed into the pond.....so it is with God's reaching power. I had dropped that stone last week (or the week before?) and didn't wait around for the skip or splash.
Glancing back, I must admit that the Holy Spirit has hold of that stone, 'cause it's-a skipping....and the ripples keep going and going and going....(NO, this is NOT an energizer bunny commercial plug). And it's pretty cool to watch.
My friend, the one to whom I feel God has led and continues to lead in a powerful spiritual journey that all who know him have been blessed, asked me why I was looking at this job (the one that I sent to the senior pastor who sent it to the ministry search team), and I replied. I explained how frustrated I was with no mentorship for potential leaders in our church, guidance into ministry, etc. He replied with some wise counsel and words and I replied back......the ripples......
Well, he recommended that I should find a brother to mentor me in ministry and I told him I was looking and praying for that very thing.......He said he knew someone he'd trust with the job and I told him to set it up.....I believe my reply to his, "Are you interested?" was "Do birds fly south for the winter????" So, that small little stone, while it didn't lead me in the direction I thought it was, has rippled out to something more.
And, with the mid-term elections over and the same people in office here in Michigan that had demonstrated against Christian values and ideals back in office, I was seriously depressed yesterday. One stone.......remember? Well, I decided to putz around and research the verses that I had referred to in one of the forums and blam......the ripples....
Paul tells us in Romans 13:1-4"1Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you." NIV.
And, then that blessing of a wife that I have the undeserved honor to be married to......another stone....and more ripples..............
Yesterday were Parent-Teacher conferences for my kids. As always, they were doing great with some stuff to work on. But the biggest 'Attaboy' was in this case a girl, my gift daughter. She's struggling in 4th grade, reading and math. But the teacher said that her attitude has changed, she'll keep at it no matter how long it takes for her to finish despite her best friend finishing quickly. The teacher said that she'd bank on that kind of student over the ones who get it quickly any day. Ripples.........I told my wife how me and the kids had talked over the summer and so far this year about how I expected nothing less than 100% effort, even if it wasn't adequate to the task. Because time and work would always master the deficiencies, but lack of effort would always cause you to fail. I told my wife how that's the path my life has taken, everything takes effort and dedication along with 100% of my best to gain. She said everything came easy to her. Ripple...... and BLAM!!! it hit me why she says some of the things she does and what lies behind her fears with the ministry and such.....and how I hit the button on that fear........
Isn't God a Great and Humorous God??? I know He's got to be shaking His head in laughter and amusement as He checks out my facial expressions each time He gets me with a "And.....BLAM!! There it is" kinda lesson.
I've come out of the wilderness. I think I'll relax by the pond of God's love and throw some skipping stones in. And just sit back and watch the ripples lead outward to the shore of His Kingdom.
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