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Understanding

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Lost or Misled? ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: November 2nd, 2016 | Category: Common Sense, Conflict, Deception, Inspirational, Truth, Understanding | Comments

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Is there something interfering with your pretty picture? You believe that simply because you’re a good, law abiding citizen, who once or thrice a year stops in at a church, that you’re good with God? You’re in the good minority as far as you can see, given all the crooks, cheats, liars and greedy sons of something you interact with daily, right? God has so many jerks to deal with that you must be a shoe-in for heaven … if there is such a place! No need to participate in any church, you already know all that you want or need to know, right? Nothing ventured, nothing lost. Giving God the freedom to go after those who really need some serious fixing, must be a good thing? Is that right about you on any count? Do you know a few people who also fit this description?

Because if it is or if you do, you’re kissing off the chance of a lifetime. You are the one whom God is trying to get through to. You are that lost sheep who doesn’t know that you’re a sheep or that you are lost, but you are. In many respects, we all are, in one way or another, at some time or another. We might be intrigued by angels and demons or disgusted by greed and selfishness but neither of these are allowed to shake our comfy world in a warming kind of way. As long as we’re healthy, mobile, fed and able to pay our bills, we’re OK with ourselves. Here’s the shaker, God isn’t OK with that or with us. Sure we live in times where God seems to have lost interest. Where people do pretty much whatever they want without consequences. Where governments reject God in favor of liberality. That has happened before. That’s not the answer or excuse we should be relying upon, that’s the problem we should be rectifying. ““My people have been lost sheep; their shepherds have led them astray and caused them to roam on the mountains. They wandered over mountain and hill and forgot their own resting place.” (Jeremiah 50:6 NIV). Jeremiah the prophet, whom God had set aside (about Jeremiah – ““Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”” Jeremiah 1:5 NIV,) was simply repeating the message for all nations that God had entrusted to him, some 600 years before Jesus was born. We have been led astray (again), we have become one of those nations, those peoples, where the lost sheep have begun to outnumber the saved flock. “My sheep wandered over all the mountains and on every high hill. They were scattered over the whole earth, and no one searched or looked for them.” Ezekiel 34:6 NIV. Ezekiel was a contemporary of Jeremiah, it seems that God really wanted to emphasize the perils facing the sheep who would be led astray. Jesus did search for us, when he finally came along, because he knew what had happened and would happen again. He is still searching. ““You will all fall away,” Jesus told them, “for it is written: “ ‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’” Mark 14:27 NIV. Jesus said, “What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off?” Matthew 18:12 NIV. This timeless concept of value still holds true today but the numbers are shifting. Now the flock is in the minority and the lost sheep are multiplying. Wandering away from the flock is the thing to do now, a new and widely accepted way of life. A freedom which will surely lead to death. This is a time when revival is necessary but I believe that God will let the chips we have chosen to play, fall where we have chosen to play them. God will continue His search for His lost sheep in the darkest of the coming storms we have brought upon ourselves. Within such storms, the lost sheep will better be able to see the light. His light. The lost and misled shall choose to seek God and come running when they feel His calming presence. God is our resting place. Our heaven. We do need reminding of this, but give some thought to being rescued before the darkness becomes overwhelming. Being saved means nothing more than coming home to the God we know. That said, being saved can only happen while we’re still alive. After that we’re simply being returned to the dust.

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Fresh Starts ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: October 18th, 2016 | Category: Conflict, Hope, Inspirational, Truth, Understanding | Comments

Sometimes things simply go our way and sometimes they don’t. We usually feel good when the wind is at our backs and then we start wondering just what we’re doing wrong when we face our harshest headwinds. Of course there are those among us who blame every headwind they encounter on something or someone else entirely. That might be a contributing factor here and there, but it’s rarely (if ever) the primary factor in our plight. We make choices every… read more

I Don’t Know ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: August 29th, 2016 | Category: Inspirational, Understanding | Comments

Has anybody ever watched or heard you do or say something remarkable and then asked you, how you did that? This query is not for magicians. Even if you’ve forgotten about the specific event(s), I suspect that this has happened to you. Your response was probably an apologetic form of “I don’t know”. There are so many things in this life which we don’t even attempt to explain, much less wrestle with. No second thoughts, we just move on presuming… read more

The Purpose ~ John C Calkins

Posted: May 9th, 2016 | Category: Christ Follower, Spirituality, Truth, Understanding | Comments

As we meander through life, whether running, walking, limping or sleeping, there must come a time when we wonder about the purpose of this all. The trials and tribulations, the loves and losses, the gains and gifts, debts and disorders, tears and laughter. Science certainly does not address these life issues. Those who never wonder are barely alive in the broader sense of “living a life.” While “living and alive” are biological terms, the nomenclature of life describes or at… read more

Earth Shattering ~ John C Calkins

Posted: April 16th, 2016 | Category: belief, Christ Follower, disciple, Inspirational, Jesus Follower, Understanding | Comments

Those 3 men of amazing influence. Have you ever wondered just what they talked about? “Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.” (Matthew 17:3 NIV). They were separated by thousands of years but they came together to talk? I have wondered, just what was said? The Bible doesn’t really provide any insight into what was communicated as the meeting was recorded in Matthew 17:3. The encounter itself illustrated life after death, which of course addressed… read more

The Harvest Of Perfection ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: February 2nd, 2016 | Category: belief, Christ Follower, Faith, Inspirational, Jesus Follower, Love, Understanding | Comments

Why does God want or need so many people in heaven? The answer seems clear if every person around us brings us joy. More joy with each person. More joy is better. Yet that somehow seems too simplistic. A bit below the genius and work of God. It is also unrealistic? Would joy even be special if we’d never known sorrow? We shouldn’t be looking at this from our point of view, we should just be looking at it from… read more

Never Underestimated Again ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: January 25th, 2016 | Category: belief, Faith, Jesus Follower, Truth, Understanding | Comments

Does anybody really know who you are? Yes you, that floating vessel moored some where in mystery. We might believe that someone close to us knows everything about us, yet in reality, that’s nearly impossible. It certainly would make life simpler, but that’s not how we’ve learned to live our lives. It’s not how our minds-eye works. We have fears, hopes, dreams, thoughts and secrets that we’ve consciously chosen not to share with certain people or in some cases with anyone at… read more

Together With God ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: January 6th, 2016 | Category: Christ Follower, Church, Love, Prophecy, Spirituality, Understanding | Comments

There exists a general, perhaps even lethal misunderstanding about the church or more specifically about the church which was referenced by Jesus. His church is not merely one or even many buildings. Neither the church as a structure nor any constructed temple by itself houses God. Believers no longer go to a church building to find God. In fact, quite the opposite should be true. We bring God with us into our church buildings. If relationship with God is our prime objective,… read more

We Did This ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: August 1st, 2015 | Category: belief, Common Sense, Hope, Prophecy, Truth, Understanding | Comments

We, or at least I, now live in a spiritually sensitive, relational world. Not everyone does. One where we are acutely aware of the gradual, yet accelerating degrading of our own ethics and general morality. This is a trend cloaked in naivety rather than nativity. We believers, on the other hand, embrace the good and pray for the bad. Sadly, we have some very demoralizing outlooks, despite our focused thoughts and efforts to see the hopeful and spread the compassion and… read more

Stepped On Toes ~ John C. Calkins

Posted: June 30th, 2015 | Category: belief, Christ Follower, Christianity, Hope, Love, Understanding | Comments

Civil rights? The rights of citizens to political and social freedom and equality. If I told you that I have been routinely barred from such freedoms and equality for decades, in my workplaces, public forums of every sort, public institutions, by being told that I could not even speak about my family in those places where anyone might hear me, am I a victim? I was told that such discussions might offend others who did not recognize my family, as my… read more