One Thought at a Time

"There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." (Proverbs 16:25) Schools of thoughts

Do you ever think about how the simplest of thoughts will lead down a radically different tangent you thought you'd achieve? What I mean is, we all hope to end up where we're meant to be. As I write this, I realize that you're meant to be where you are (how was it worded?) because God put you here. This is something my Dad would say so I can't lay claim to its brilliance. I suppose I might have thought up something along those lines somewhere down the road. What I did, rather, was grow into it. The phrase is, "With all due respect, I didn't ask to be here." And so, working our way up from this simplest of realizations--read it again if you have to--see that every moment you live is a gift. One that scales, that is stacked on top of the next. If you need a refresher or a do-over, all you have to do is ask. But you're here. For better or worse, God wanted you here and, wow. Here you are. This is why it's important to dial in one's mind and mental capacity. Because the slightest slip-up--without the mercy of God--will end in launching us out on a course from which we may never return. That falls over the edge of the world.

"They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course." (Psalm 82:5)

This is one of the reasons why it's important to "Walk with wisdom toward them that are without, redeeming the time." says Paul (Colossians 4:5) It takes time to change one's thinking. It takes more than time, however, to change one's heart. A person's toward-God heart condition can go through one mindset after another. But if they haven't humbled themselves to receive the free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ, they'll ever be without. Paul continues to the Colossians: "Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man." And woman. The best thing you can do is, not walk in knowledge only towards those who disagree with you (either spiritually or doctrinally) but love. Love is something, cliched as it may sound, that comes from the heart. Not the head. I would say that wisdom--the true wisdom of God--is an aggregate, an amalgamation of love and knowledge, mixed with time. This is what my dad knew when he expressed what I mentioned earlier. He'd lived life to the point that had almost curved back in on itself. Wow. I'm here. I'm cognizant and I'm aware and now I realize that I wasn't always.

Unintellectual Property

"In your patience possess ye your souls." (Luke 21:19)

Or you don't have to. Jesus is merely making a suggestion. Your soul is up for grabs and if you willingly over time trade your moments and attention to God by giving them to Him, He'll give you the transcendent, the superlative. It takes time, sure. Hard work and extremely delayed gratification. And you can press on in faith believing that God is that mirror you want to see your reflection in. It's not easy but it is simple. Or, you could go along with the undercurrent that says that any image we get is purely neuronal and a mirage at that. I mean, if you wanna get real picky, how do you know you have a brain? Have you ever seen it? No? Well, unless you've had an MRI or CT scan or been X-rayed in the head. Silly, I know, but think about it.

"But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed." (James 1:25)

James just finished giving us the spiel regarding being a "doer of the word" (see 1:22). In chapter two, he gets into the whole "faith without works is dead" paradigm. Very pithy and true. And this is where the rubber meets the road, so to speak. If you take on this tack that says that everything you think is springing from one neurosis or another and that your very free will and personhood are merely the outworking of your brain doing its thing, you will end in missing God. The God who loves you, who made you and wants to both remake you and then give you to yourself, again.

"And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel." (Matthew 8:7-10)

The reason is because the centurion was so disciplined in his thinking that he knew Jesus could affect change along every line.

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