Monday, October 10, 2016

"A healthy attitude is contagious but don't wait to catch it from others. Be a carrier." ~ Tom Stoppard, British playwright and screenwriter

Yep. It's that time again. This particular 'embrace the day' falls on back-to-work Monday, October 10, 2016. Lately, I have been reminded of the frailty of the human condition. At 70, I think you have to know you are in the last quarter, but, when day after day brings you news of family, friends, co-workers, and associates who are the same or younger, dealing with life-threatening health challenges, well, it does make for a sobering thought process. Cancer and heart problems seem to be at the forefront as folks continue the journey here. I'm not immune from having all these reports work on me. It causes me to notice this, that, and the other and to think that maybe it could be a this, that, or the other problem. Some of it is mental. Some of it is the fact that I don't move exactly like I did a few years ago. Don't get me wrong. I could not be more thankful that I'm as able as I am to get up each day and do what I am able to do. The other evening I talked to my dad who is 86 years young. Emphasis on the young. I know he has a number of health challenges he is dealing with. I asked how things were going with regards to these chronic ailments. However, he wouldn't own up to any of them. He was bubbling over with confidence in his ability to do all that he set his mind to do. We all know that mindset and attitude play a huge role in our perception of our well being. After talking with dad I thought to myself that I would like to order the same thing he is having. With some extra butter, please.

The old joke about reading the obituaries each day to see if your name is listed can become a reality when we allow the ebb and flow of life to wear us down. That's when we need a fix. Not from a drug, but, for me, that's when I need a faith fix. One person reported they had counted 3,573 promises in God's Word, the Bible. Another site listed 5,000. I mention that because it's the place to go when your faith is feeling sickly. Those promises are real if God is real, and, He is, therefore, we can read them again for the first time and allow Him to revive our heart. That will help one to have a healthy outlook regardless of the news or the experiences encountered in what can be, at times, a tough-row-to-hoe life. As I was pecking out this paragraph and thinking about God's promises, one passage from Romans Chapter 8 immediately came to my mind. ~ What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is he who condemns? It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ (Verses 31-39)

I challenge us all to examine that catalog of blessed truths as given in that passage. I couldn't really find any wiggle room in identifying an exception as it relates to the problems faced in this life. That word from the Lord as given through the Apostle Paul writing to a local fellowship of believers meeting together in Rome, Italy, is all encompassing for anyone who has put their faith and trust in Jesus and His finished work on the Cross on their behalf. It may not remove the very real and present challenges we face, but, my oh my, what a blessing to know that He will never leave us, never, never, no never. You likely recognize the situation of that well-known trio: me, myself, and I, as being the first and most likely target in today's episode. That, my friend, is a very astute observation. At the same time, as the late Dr. C. H. McBryde had it, "We all are fellow strugglers." This means that God's Word ministers to us all and when I share personal matters that God helps me with, that same help is available to us all. Now. If only I had one of those 1-800 numbers where you could call and make a pledge or give an offering. Joking only. I feel encouraged, and perhaps someone out there does too. Could it be God? May He bless each one is my prayer. Amen. ....More later.

No comments: