In our measured lives separated from birth to death by a dash, it would seem far greater if we could use emoji's to describe the middle part. Laughter, grief, children, accomplishments, there would be a vast lineup of these that anyone could see and say that was a fulfilled life, or not. Hopefully mine would have many celebratory ones to symbolize a radically changed life.
There should also be one for pouring in to someone else's life. My life has been blessed with many such people, one who just turned 80 today that had a huge impact on my life and faith. His name is Wayne Collins and he has a gift to Evangelize without being judgmental. He handled teaching me and dealing with a virtual mess of a human being when I was coming out of addiction in a beautiful manner.
So, I too have tried, even after failing my own children for those years in addiction, to now be that one who also pours into someone else. It is so gratifying to watch someone grow as you lead them into a changed and meaningful life when their or your direction had been misguided. And then when you watch them do some special work, or become a leader themselves, and encourage as well as help others, it's a big win.
Jesus poured into his disciples, Paul poured into Timothy, they all poured into the early church leaders as the scripture also leads us all to do. And what is really amazing is that without the ability to rapidly communicate, no internet, no Tik-Tok or cell phones, they made a major difference in this world in such a short period of time.
That's what happens when God pours into us through his Holy Spirit, we can rapidly help to change the lives of others by simply taking the time by Pouring In! He does the rest.
Thank God for brother Wayne :) !!! *+* 100%!
Drinking The Kool-Aid
This phrase is so often used but as often misunderstood. It's origin supposedly came from the mass suicide that
happened in Jonestown with the Jim Jones cult when they were ordered to drink a juice laced with cyanide. More than 900 people died from it and a movie is being made about his life titled "Jim Jones'" starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
In so many words it is about having blind faith in something, in this case and most others, having a blind faith in a human belief. Such as technology can solve all our problems, or on a political scale, that the next great candidate can right all the wrongs. Jim Jones turned his back on Christianity and declared himself God, and his followers believed he was. Thus, they drank the Kool-Aid and perished from their blind misguided faith.
In todays society Drinking The Kool-Aid can be equated to believing that drugs can solve our problems and that the dope man will deliver the answer. Unfortunately, like Jonestown, it is becoming like mass suicide with the introduction of fentanyl laced product.
In Jesus ministry, when he came to a well in Samaria (Jacob's well), he spoke to a woman who thought faith in more husbands and relationships could solve her problems. That was her Kool-Aid. Most of us have read this story and understand he was not supposed to be speaking to her for several reasons that made sense to those in that era, but it makes total sense to us now. As always, he had a higher purpose.
When confronted with her doubts and insecurities he spoke these words to her: If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water. John 4
Her response was a blind faith in her ancestors and in that the well and in those men and in her knowledge of what happened in that well in the past. But Jesus re-directed her faith. He added: Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst.
Having a blind faith in humanity and the things this world can offer can get us killed or constantly leave us empty and looking for more. Having that same faith in the Lord can bring us a satisfied life now, and an after life of joy in eternity forever.
Forever and ever Amen!
Connect The Dots
Most of us want to be in control. We want to know how things work and what the payoff is. We want to be able to choose our path and not have it chosen for us.
In a perfect world this might be possible. But in the fallible world we live in there are so many variables of life that we can spend so much time trying to control things while spinning our wheels, when in effect God has the steering wheel and the right GPS for our destinations. Think about it.
Have you been hitting a wall lately? Do you pray and then try to answer your own prayer? Do you have a hard time letting go of the reins and just flow in the Spirit of God's call on your life? Join the crowd, I am sure we have all been there. In fact, some of us have nearly destroyed our families and lives because of it.
What's the answer to connecting the dots when we can't find where the dots connect? Speaking to those folks God brought out of captivity in Babylon to Jerusalem in the Book of Jeremiah (yes I am speaking to those of us in addiction recovery), he warns them to not listen to the deceivers (the promoters of false promises), and then he says these very encouraging words:
For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, and will bring you back from captivity. Jer. 29:11-14
God knows all the things that have put us in exile like money, drugs, alcohol, bad living and chasing fantasies. He knows that our trying to take control has spun us out of control. His original plan for us did not include these detours. But he can connect the dots again to a life that is worth living that takes the pressure off our trying to succeed when all he wants is us to talk with him, walk with him and find Him, which in turn finds us.
We come out of the lost and found department and into a future lit with son-light. The dots become connected!
Glenn is an ex-Marine Viet Nam vet who is also a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober for 30 years. He has been involved in start up and ongoing recovery ministry at North Atlanta Church and Campus for the last two decades. He has a passion for outreach and to spread the message that the answer to lasting and fulfilling recovery from addiction is in a relationship with Jesus Christ. He and the ATB team are available to assist in your questions or needs on an individual basis and will do so maintaining complete confidentiality. You may e-mail him at email@example.com.