Monday, May 14, 2007

The grapes of wrath

I went to Harry's Place in Colchester the other day and ordered a hot dog with the works and a grape soda. The cashier promptly told me that they didn't have grape soda. To which I replied,"Wow! I used to always get grape soda here."

The boy looked at the woman standing next to him and said, "Mom, when did we have grape soda? I never remember it." She responded, "Oh yes, we had it back when Coke was our distributor." Then I thought about it for a minute and I realized that I used to get my regular order about 26 years ago. The cashier probably wasn't even born yet.

Time is a funny thing. It passes ever so quickly and yet there is a part of us that continues to live in the past. We remember things as though they happened yesterday. I think that is why we hold on to grudges so long. We get5 angry over something and we can't seem to let it go. I know people who are still angry over some slight that happened twenty years ago.

I think God had it right when he called on the Jewish people to forgive all their debts in seven year periods and in the jubilee year, they were to start all over. Maybe we need to do that too! We need to let the past be the past and get on with the future.

So if you are carrying some burden around, give it to God and move on. You'll be happier for it.


Saturday, May 12, 2007

Better than a dumpster

It has been very nice outside and I have been walking a lot. The other day I was walking through a nice neighborhood when I saw something that caused me to stop and think. On the main street I was overcome with the beauty of some of the houses I walked past. Many of them were historic and well kept. But as I looked closer I began to look beyond the house in front and notice the back yards of the homes on the next street.

Whereas most of the front yards were well kept and the homes brightly painted and nicely decorated, many of the home on the next street had clutter in their back yards. As I turned down that street I was amazed to see that it wasn't because one street was nicer than the next. I found the front yards on the next street just as nicely kept. As I looked at the back yards of the street I had just walked down, I noticed the disarray that was hidden from my initial walk through.

It got me thinking about facades and the false faces many of us wear. The truth is that all of us are struggling with some issue in our lives. We put on a happy face but no one sees the back yard were we keep the junk.

I am so thankful that God is in the rubbish removal business. Jesus Christ is willing to come in and haul away all that stuff that is messing up our back yards. all we have to do is call. Jesus loves you so much that he wants you to live life in the wonder of God's grace. So go for it. Call on him.


Wednesday, May 9, 2007

No butts for me

I was driving down to the church yesterday and three times I had to dodge cigarette butts that came flying out of car windows from in front of me. I couldn't believe it. I actually tooted the horn and flashed my lights at the last person who did that. I took it as a personal insult. I began to feel that I was being persecuted.

The truth is that I know the flying ashes had nothing to do with me. It was a a nice day. People were driving with their windows down and the people who would normally put the butt in the ashtray just decided to flick it out. I was in the wrong place at the right time.

A lot of us take the insults of the world personally. We get all worked up and start walking around angry and ready to fight the world if we get insulted or wronged. The Apostle Paul tells us that we should look at every circumstance as an opportunity to bring praises to God. I thought about that after I finished my little tirade. Then I said a prayer for the person in the car in front of me.

We can turn every situation around. If Paul could pray for his prison guards, then you and I can certainly pray for someone who foolishly wrongs us along the way. In Paul's case the men were converted. Who knows what we can do when we give the bad situations to God and let God work his grace?