“…but you’ll need to look”

How many times have you crossed paths with a dear friend you haven’t seen in a long time, but you only had a few minutes before another important event?  Or how often have you come outside only to see the very end of a breath-taking sunset?  Those kinds of moments prompt us to wish we could turn the clock back and plan for them.  But we can’t.  The best we can do is plan for something similar in the future.

Today’s article announces an amazing event and gives us the chance to do just that.  Plan.  It also reminds me of many types of important events that the Lord announces in His Word.  All of them can be breath-taking – positively or negatively.  So, of course, He is calling us to plan for them.  Consider the example of two basics.

 

  • Leadership and support in human relationships and work:  From Genesis 1:26ff we know that the Lord created us to rule (lead, provide, safe-guard, etc. ) in His image.  Due to Man’s attempt to decide our own path, however, the earth is under God’s curse.  So, in Genesis 3:16-19, He warns us that life here will now be difficult for us.  He still calls us to bear the fruit of His image (to grow in His character and plan, discipling others to follow Him by faith in Him, and to be productive in all other works), but we will have to plan for difficulties, obey Him, persevere, and trust Him with the results.
  • Following God by faith in Christ:  In Genesis 32:22-32, we see Jacob wrestling with God.  Specifically, this was the pre-incarnate Christ:  Jesus before He took on human form.  We know it was not God the Father or the Holy Spirit because both are spirit, and Scripture is clear that no one but Jesus has ever seen the Father. (John 1:1, 6:46, and 14:9)  One of the most powerful images of the wrestling match is that the “leg-puller” (Jacob’s name meant “he who grasps the heel”, i.e., the deceiver) has his leg pulled out of joint.  A wrestler’s core strength, his hips, is stripped from the wrestler, and God renames him “Israel”: he who wrestle with God.  This reminds us that our relationship with God will be both hard (our wrestling is our own foolishness to have our own way) and simple:  He wins and blesses freely.

 

Perseid Meteor Shower 2017:  how, when, and where to watch the year’s best cosmic lightshow

 “…but you’ll need to look” by Chaplain Jeff Dillard (8 August 2017)

Most of us don’t experience amazing events every day.  But, depending on where you are this week, one could be coming your way.  Newsweek’s Hannah Osborne reports, “The Perseid meteor shower, one of the best shooting star displays of the year, is set to peak on August 12. It is expected to produce up to 150 meteors per hour and will be visible across the Northern Hemisphere.  The best time to watch the shower is late on August 12, or early the following morning. Stargazers hoping to watch the event should find an area away from light pollution and get settled in a comfortable position, allowing about half an hour for their eyes to acclimatize to the dark.  Alternatively, a live broadcast of the shower will be shown via the Slooh website on August 12 from 8 p.m. Eastern time.  Astronomers will discuss the Perseids and answer questions about the meteor shower over the course of the evening.” (http://www.newsweek.com/perseids-meteor-shower-2017-where-watch-647922) This incredible show is completely free and open to everyone, but you’ll need to look.
by Chaplain Jeff Dillard (8 August 2017)

Forgive me if I sound like Captain Obvious, but seeing usually starts with looking, doesn’t it?  We might see a shooting star every blue moon (pardon the pun) if we just happen to be in the right place, looking in the right direction at the right time.  But our chances of enjoying something amazing greatly increase if we identify what we want to witness and then begin a systematic search.  We have to look.

The most successful people and the happiest (not always the same people, by the way) know this is true.  They experience the amazing now because they know what they want and continue to pursue it.  They are focused, active, self-controlled, committed, and patient.  They know that, like annual meteor showers, just because we want something and work toward enjoying it, it may take time.

This may sound obvious, but many of us still don’t look for the amazing in our relationships, work, or other surroundings as intently as we could.  Consider three reasons why and one simple reminder.

Some people have had such hardship in their lives, they think nothing good will or should come their way.  They expect disappointment, so they don’t waste time and effort looking for what doesn’t exist.  Some, on the other hand, have had blessings all their lives.  They expect amazing things to come to them.  They don’t necessarily think they’re so deserving.  Life has just been easy, so why do more?  And some identified their vision, worked tirelessly, looked and looked for their efforts to be rewarded, and still only saw the dark void staring back at them.  The pain was so great, they gave up looking.

The simple reminder is this:  if we are always looking in only one direction, we may miss the amazing everywhere else.  Consider looking elsewhere for other beauties, pictures of strength, growth, etc.  Ask family and trusted friends what they see.  Keep looking, and something new may surprise you.

If you’d like to read other articles from this series on current events, you can click here.

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If you’d like to know more about who publishes the articles, videos, and other materials on tools4trenches, you can click on the picture of me and my wife.

 

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