Category: Reflections/ Messages (page 1 of 11)

On Work

 

A recent issue (2015) of the small journal of The Institute for Faith and Learning at Baylor University is entitled “Work”. In the introduction, Robert B. Kruschwitz, the journal editor, summarizes the contributions, all which extoll the positive benefits of work. Some of the themes that stood out as important seemed to be: 1) pleasure in a job, rather than focusing on the salary or prestige it provides; 2) an over reliance on technologies and their use, rather than on environmental issues; 3) underemployment and no employment, representing the poor in our society, with references to the poverty gospel, contrasted with the prosperity gospel; 4) the dignity of work and workers; and 5) offering whatever kind of work that we do as a gift to God.

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Random Thoughts on Heaven and Rewards

My thoughts for this study started out with the question, “How many heavens are there?” but it soon diverged quite widely (and wildly) into the matter of what heaven will like for us and if we will be rewarded for the work we do while here on earth.

We probably all like stories of heaven and there are innumerable books and movies about it. Two more receant and popular books have pursued the theme: 1) Heaven is for real: A little boy’s astounding story of his trip to heaven and back (HIFAR Ministries, 2010) and 2) The boy who came back from heaven: A remarkable account of miracles, angels, and life beyond this world (Tyndale, 2010). Books like this sell, but both books turn out to be false and we should not be surprised.[1] Heaven is not transparent until we are resurrected and in God’s presence.

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A Son Talks Back to His Father

The book of Proverbs is replete with advice and comments from a father to his “sons” (or daughters). A mother’s guidance to her daughter would be somewhat different than the father’s, but it would help her. In what follows, the “father” speaking in Proverbs wants to help his son and is warning him about potential dangerous friends and difficult situations.

But what if the son or daughter doesn’t want to heed the advice of their parents? Perhaps the son is convinced that his father is out of step with current times and that obeying him is going to take a lot of the joy out of life.

In the following dialogue, the responses by the son are imaginary and from the point of view of a disobedient one. The father’s instructions come directly from chapters and their verses in the book of Proverbs.

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HOPE and BLESSING

 

Introduction

“At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure…. Some day, God willing we shall get in.” C. S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory, p. 13.

As Christians we have this strong hope—what Lewis referred to as a “longing” for some other place. It is heaven that we long for and God has built this longing, this hope, within out souls.

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A Note about Gifts

 

 

“Where gifts be given freely—east, west, north or south—
No man ought to look a given horse in the mouth.”
(Attributed to John Heywood, 1497-1580}

We don’t have horses given to  us very often, so the meaning of the phrase is probably quite obsolete. Its central idea was not to spend time inspecting a gift, but to be grateful for it.

However, if you can take the time to look a “gift horse in the mouth”, you may notice that some teeth are missing. Or the teeth may be there, but the gums are bleeding. So, in truth, perhaps you should look into the mouth of a gift horse.

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