Mar 31, 2019

Little Life, Big Life

I have a small life which I thoroughly enjoy.  It involves buying groceries with my wife.  And, that usually involves going by our favorite donut shop to grab an apple fritter and sit and talk.  And, that stop typically involves looking at the latest new born pics of the couple who owns the shop.

I love to putter in my yard.  I enjoy building small kayak type boats.  And, I like taking my wife for dinner, after work - and breakfast on off days.  And, I love a thousand other things which don’t really amount to a hill of beans in the larger scheme of things.  But, all in all, it is a pleasant little life. 

However, I learned long ago that there has to be more than just my small, everyday little life, because “little” tends to become empty if it’s not connected to “big.”  And, I actually found the door to “big” some years back, too.  It is a vital, daily relationship with the living Jesus.  Since then, He has constantly challenged me to embrace the bigger life, a life that involves something larger than the present moment, my small surroundings, my health issues, and my little hobbies and happy times.

Rather, His guidance, and sometimes insistence, connects me to the larger life issues of character growth, and principled living, and the values and truth of my Creator, and the needs of my neighbors, and my society, and even my world.   So, I still enjoy and find meaning in my little life.  But, praise God, my little life has not made of me a little person, because He has connected me to the “big stuff” too. 

And, I’m convinced that God is big enough to provide this same blessing for a needy America which has now become so widely self-absorbed in the infinitely small issues of materialism and technology.  Those little things only truly contribute when there is a larger context of bigger issues, those involving character transformation and truly principled living.  And fortunately, there is a wonderful “app” for that.  It is called penitence and humility before God (faith). 

Mar 15, 2019

Haughty Naivety

When I was learning to fly, I can remember how complex and sophisticated that little 2 place Cessna 150 trainer seemed as I sat looking at all of the instruments, gauges, and switches.  But, later, as I graduated to the cavernous, 4 place Cessna 172, I was then embarrassed at how I had struggled with the child’s play of that first little plane.  Surely, this 172 was the be-all, end-all of the general aviation world.

And, indeed, that was true.  Well – it was true until I went to check out in a Piper 235 with retractable landing gear, a constant speed prop, an autopilot, and a GPS navigation system.  And then, I knew for sure that I had finally arrived at the ultimate aviation experience.  It could not possibly get any bigger or more sophisticated than this.  And, that was, indeed, true – until…

Since those early aviation object lessons, I have discovered that it is actually typical of human beings to experience life, itself, in the same way as I did those airplanes – and for precisely the same reason – our naivety.  In other words, wherever we are and whatever we’re doing today is as big and important as it gets.  Well – until tomorrow, when yesterday is again dwarfed by today’s new level of bigness and sophistication. 

So, in our brave new world, we have watched digital swallow analog.  We have seen computers morph into multiple forms and become progressively faster, more sophisticated, and bigger – even as they slide into ever smaller cases and drag us in after them.  And now, we stand in the very foyer of an AI World.  And, again we think, “Surely, this is it, life’s final form of “Big and Sophisticated.”  But, as always, it is not.

In fact, in the space of one very consequential moment and one note from the divine trumpet announcing the return of Jesus Christ to this world, our present “techno-craze” will be instantly exposed for the child’s play that it is.  Then – all naivety past – mankind will be confronted by what truly is enduring “Bigness and Sophistication” – ready or not.