Thursday, October 23, 2014

Day 296- A Ramping It Up First

I did not notice a lot of "first" opportunities today. I went to visit some friends at the nursing home. I did think it would be cool to see how fast I could push someone in a wheelchair down the hall in the nursing home.  When I got to a corner, I could sort of power slide around it.  I chose not to try that for my "first."  I was in my office this morning and there are not a lot of "firsts" in there.  As I was driving to town, it hit me that I could pull up to someone's house, ring their doorbell, and then run away real fast for my "first."  It's been at least 20 years since I've done that so it would count.  I chose not to do that either.

Earlier in the year, I shot a pine cone out of a tree for a "first."  Today, I decided to try to shoot 2 pine cones out of a tree in one shot for my "first."  This would be sort of ramping up an earlier "first."

Pine cones tend to grow where a couple are kind of connected.  I did not know if I could put a .22 bullet in the right place to cut 2 down at a time.  I found a pair and shot them both down on the first shot.  I know, I know, lucky shot you say.  I choose to say that it was a blessed shot. The hand of the Lord guided me on my first shot.

Well, methinks, why not try to improve that?   I decided to try to get more than two in a shot.  I picked out a cluster and went after them.  I did not get any on the first shot.  After several shots, I was able to cut down 4 in one shot which was pretty cool because I thought it was 3 in the cluster.  You can call that the favor of God.  I had a nice harvest of pine cones in a short amount of shooting time today.  Anybody have a recipe for pine cones?


If you look close, you might see the whirly-birds from the pine cones I shot
 Joel's fall ball team- league champions!

I thought about 2 Peter 3:18 today which says, "But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen."  It is rather meaningless to grow from shooting one pine cone down to four, but it is very meaningful to grow in our faith.  I find that one of the temptations I battle is the temptation to mediocrity. It is the temptation to sort of just settle in where I am spiritually and not be intentional about growing. That's one of the reasons I chose to do a year of  "firsts."   I've been a Christian since I was 17. I've been a pastor since 1982. One might think I have it figured out by now, but one would be wrong.  There is so much about me that is not like Jesus.  So, there is so much growing for me to do.  This is not the place to settle in.  Yet, I find that is a big temptation to battle.

The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 3:18, "But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit."  Followers of Jesus are being transformed.  We have not yet been fully transformed. That means there is more growing to do. 

Ruth Graham came home one day and told her husband Billy (yes, the Billy Graham) that she found what she wanted on her tombstone. There had been a lot of road construction near their home.  When the road construction was completed, the people responsible for the construction put up a sign that said, "End of construction. Thank you for your patience." She said she wanted that on her tombstone.  It is on her tombstone.   While we are here, the construction is still going on. Let's not quit now.

Growing in the abundant life

3 things I thank God for today
1. The life of Ruth Graham
2. God is still working on me
3. Philippians 1:6-  For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.

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