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with Common Sense 4 Uncommon People

September, 2013


Escape From? ~ JC Calkins

Posted: September 30th, 2013 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, Inspirational | Comments

I don’t believe that I’ve ever known another person who didn’t, at some point, express the desire to just get-away, escape or run. Given the complexities of this life and our relationships, this expressed desire for a haven has become one of our new norms. The question we must ask ourselves is what are we really hoping to escape from? This is life, we can move from one place or relationship to another but geography won’t resolve our issues and nearly every natural relationship ultimately displays similar flaws. Then what is or who has the answers? “But the wisdom from above is pure first of all; it is also peaceful, gentle, and friendly; it is full of compassion and produces a harvest of good deeds; it is free from prejudice and hypocrisy.” (James 3:17 GNT). Our sought after haven is God but where is God? The first time I sought God, it was as though I was in a thickening fog, with darkness descending. There existed an almost imaginary illusion of being, as though cloaked in a yellow rain slicker, standing at the outside edge of my perceptions. Then the soft light gradually disappeared. There had been no haunting beckoning and despite my intentional progression this sought after being had never grown any closer. The storms around me continued to worsen and every step seemed to deliver me even closer to that which I most wanted to avoid. Where are you God?

I believe that God is most easily found at the center of life’s storms. Not because He causes the storms, He does not, but simply because if there is to be any satisfactory  resolution, then it will be delivered by God from his front row seat. Many of our storms are of our own making. Our wisdom is not pure, it’s not always peaceful, gentle and friendly.  It is rarely full of compassion and almost never produces a harvest of good deeds. Only God’s wise influence does that. So again I ask,  where are you God? Back to the original question of escaping from what? We are desperately trying to escape from a life where God’s absent presence is becoming too obvious. Such an absence leaves a void which can only be filled by misery, usually dressed as pleasure and fed confusion. Such a void dictates desperation, not solutions. Looking for God is like looking for happiness. Without a give and take relationship neither God nor happiness can ever be found. God is no farther away than just beyond the door to our lives. We needn’t wait for the storms to invite God in. There is no other aspect of life where we would intentionally wait for the storms to arrive, before arranging a shelter. By seeking God, we are taking our first necessary steps into the fog of our own humility. We are first suspending and then abandoning our faulty systems of self reliance and limited understanding. We are then challenged to surrender the rest of our self governing egos. We must trade them all for trust. We need face directly into the eyes of our storms to find the God we can totally trust.  He’s waiting for us. After that, we’ll always know where God is.



Enemy or Evil? ~ JC Calkins

Posted: September 28th, 2013 | Category: Christ Follower, disciple, Inspirational | Comments (3)

We could float around sunning ourselves while ignoring the world or we could make some useful decisions. OK now what to hate or love? It can at times be confusing, this Godly directive we are under to love our enemies and yet condemn or hate evil. This confusion results from misunderstandings. Our enemies are not always evil, even when they are in opposition to our ways. Our ways are not always right even if they aren’t evil. Loving and condemning are… read more

Supernatural ~ JC Calkins

Posted: September 26th, 2013 | Category: Christ Follower, Inspirational, Spirituality | Comments

There is nothing natural about the supernatural. Natural means “existing in or caused by nature“, which of course refers to the phenomena of the physical world or that which was not created by man. God is supernatural. God creates through thought. How strong then is thought, that it can turn imagination into the measurable realities of the physical world? God is not a figment of imagination, He is the imagination behind the figments of our realities. That takes a few… read more

Powerful Weapons ~ JC Calkins

Posted: September 25th, 2013 | Category: Christ Follower, disciple, Inspirational, Spirituality | Comments

When we think of weapons, we think of those items of destruction which we hear of on the evening news.  We think about those components of war where entire societies can be devastated. We think of terrorism. We also think of the equipment which hunters, soldiers and criminals carry to kill and bag their desired prey. These however, are not the weapons which have done more to change the world then those things which we tend not think of as… read more

Taken Away? ~ JC Calkins

Posted: September 24th, 2013 | Category: Christ Follower, Christianity, disciple, Inspirational | Comments

Immediately after learning of his children’s deaths, Job fell to the ground worshipping “and said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the [Lord] gave, and the [Lord] hath taken away; blessed be the name of the [Lord]. In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.” (Job 1:21, 22 KJVA). There are so many among us, who have studied the bible, seeking a more refined, definitive portrait of God, yet who… read more