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THE QUIET CORNER
with Common Sense 4 Uncommon People
 

December, 2012

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The Odds Are Slim

Posted: December 30th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, Spirituality | Comments

When we think of the lottery, we probably know the odds, but we still rightfully conclude that somebody has to win.  Right?  So why not me? This is a much bigger question; why are some folks broken down and rebuilt in life and others are just left to be whatever they’ve set themselves up for? Nearly everybody likes to think that we’re a good or probable candidate for induction into heaven, but the bible or God refutes that idea, not just once but over and over again. “But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:14 NIV). “Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15 NIV). “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:21 NIV). These are just a few of the many such references. But the metaphor used above, ends here, it is absolutely not a lottery. Some people are not torn down because they don’t need tearing down, but those are few and far between. Others are not torn down because they’ve not invited God into their lives and given Him absolute permission to raze their castle and begin the makeover. And finally others may not be torn down because they are offering nothing to be rebuilt or any reason to be, they may well have chosen not to follow God and been definitive in that choice. Tearing down is just a thorough clean out, but it can also be particularly painful. You’ll never see a remodel begin until that which needs discarding has been painstakingly removed. Then God begins His work, from the inside of what’s left to the finishing touches of the outside. The outside is the part which will touch the rest of a tarnished world, but the inside is the reasoning, obedience and caring, which will define that touch. God will groom us to whatever extent is necessary for us to be able to fulfill His purpose. We may never even see the touch or touches which He’s deemed most needed, but if we are following Christ, He’ll make sure that we reach out, lean over, listen carefully, respond accordingly, sacrifice adequately when it’s needed. After that happens the world will be a slightly better place.

If you’ve had your world turned upside down and shaken out and you are a Christ follower, you’ve been chosen from a line of anxious followers, to serve The Lord. That certainly doesn’t mean that you were bad or not paying attention, it just means that your gift needs some restoration, alignment, fine tuning and focusing. It also needs to separated from any other uses which were not necessarily God approved or ordained. It’s often very hard to consider pain, heartache, fear or unexpected upheaval as a gift or an opportunity, but if you’re one of God’s prospective children, who’s been waiting your turn to please Him, it’s time. God doesn’t make our hardships, He uses them to get our attention. If life is rose garden without thorns, a bowl of cherries without the tart, or blue sky’s absent any clouds, you might want to consider re-devoting yourself to God. That lake of fire place doesn’t sound at all inviting or appealing. If you’re not yet a Christ follower, you’ve just been touched by one of his projects under repair.

JC Calkins with COMMON SENSE 4 UNCOMMON PEOPLE


 

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To Each His Own

Posted: December 29th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Spirituality | Comments (1)

To each his own. These four words are used like water, to live by, for consumption and for cleansing, but what do they mean to you? Generally this phrase is used to reflect the idea that each of us is entitled to our own opinion, choices, success or failures. It’s a very old phrase, translated from Latin, Greek and Hebrew. Whenever we disagree with someone, we think if not utter, to each his own. But what else in life is… read more

New Moon, New Year?

Posted: December 28th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Spirituality | Comments

New moon? Yeah.  New Year? Yeah.  Or have the planets just come full circle again? Since the dawn of time, everything around us has operated pretty much in the same way.  Sure some stars fall out of our sky vision and perhaps some new ones are born or come onto our vista, but all in all, everything stays the same. I have no idea if our galaxy changes it’s relative position in the big universal picture, but that matters very… read more

The Placebo Effect?

Posted: December 24th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, prosperity, Spirituality | Comments

There is something in life which we refer to as the “placebo effect“. It’s the power of belief working for us or what many popular inspirational writers have referred to as the “power of positive thinking.” It’s at least the fodder of motivation and at most an invisible, undefinable environment for mental and physical healing and well being. It’s the glass half full, the sun breaking through the clouds, a faith centered concept without formal attribution, and it works, somehow…. read more

Closely Not Loosely

Posted: December 23rd, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, Spirituality | Comments

We have two parts to our lives, the physical part and the spiritual part. Bringing these two parts together can be a lifetime project or something which many choose to ignore altogether. We can be strong in the physical sense or strong in the spiritual sense or we can be good in both but good as used here isn’t the same as strong. Most choose the latter approach, honoring Christianity with their lives, applying their beliefs in varying degrees to… read more

One Small Part

Posted: December 21st, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, disciple, prosperity, Spirituality | Comments

Have you known anyone in your life who lived for their job? That’s a step further out than just loving their job. It has nothing to do with how much is earned, where they work or the prestige received from their endeavors, it’s just a matter of doing something which they find rewarding in so many ways and which others find beneficial in still other ways.  It’s so rewarding in fact that they’d do it for free, in lieu of… read more

Children & Tarnished Lanterns

Posted: December 20th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, disciple, Spirituality | Comments (1)

Little children are certainly as at risk as any one else on this planet, in a strictly physical sense.  In the more important sense, they are significantly more protected than the rest of us. That referenced more important sense is of course eternal life. “Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them.  Jesus said,  “Let the little children come to me, and do not… read more

Until It Hurts

Posted: December 19th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, prosperity, Spirituality | Comments (2)

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted  by the devil.  After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.  The tempter came to him and said, … ” (Matthew 4:1-3 NIV).  What Satan said to or how he tempted Jesus is not the point of this particular article, what is important is that even Jesus, was to be tempted. Note that Jesus was led into the wilderness by the Holy Spirit, specifically to… read more

A Lasting Peace

Posted: December 17th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Inspirational, Spirituality | Comments

Jesus is the Messiah and as such we think of Him first as our Savior, and for too many it all too simply ends there. But there is the other part too often forgotten, the part that acknowledges from what and whom we need be saved. There would be no point to salvation or even Christmas if there were not first, the threats of destruction and death. “John (the Baptist) answered them all, “I baptize you with water. But one… read more

The First Christmas Eve

Posted: December 16th, 2012 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, Spirituality | Comments

Today, please imagine for just a few moments, that you are indeed the most fortunate person in the world. Your family is extraordinary. Imagine as well that you live in the most beautiful home, in the best place that you can envision. You have more REAL friends you’d hope to count right now. You have a fantastic job. People everywhere respect and love you for who you are, not for what you have. Those same people listen to your every… read more