Reach For More

Earlier this week, I wrote about celebrating ordinary & normal as I was traveling home from a long weekend in Singapore. But yesterday, I started reading the book of Judges in the OT & some crazy stuff happened in that book. Judges includes the stories of Samson, Jael (driving a nail through a guy’s head), Gideon & lots more. In the beginning, it talks a lot about how the Israelites didn’t drive out the Canaanites from the Promised Land. Israel allowed the common & natural to remain in their land & this shortfall became a stumbling block for Israel. The stories in Judges that are noteworthy aren’t the ones about what’s ordinary, believable or natural. 

Maybe we live common, natural & ordinary lives because we tolerate average & safe. 
Perhaps God wants us to live different lives:
Super + natural = supernatural

Extra + ordinary = extraordinary

Credible + in = incredible
Let’s allow more space for God in our lives & less space for ordinary, credible & natural ūüôā

don’t settle

We have a joke in our family about my cooking – when the smoke alarm goes off in our house, it’s a good sign that we’re going to have a great meal and the more smoke alarms that go off, the better the meal. ¬†It’s become kind of humorous among all of us and we’ve become somewhat accustomed to a dinner time smoke alarm – which can be a little scary. ¬†Alarms are meant to alert us that something is amiss and should be immediately checked upon. ¬†When we get dull to alarms, things can become severely dangerous and God forbid that we should sleep through such alarms!

I wonder if there could be some alarms in our lives that alert us to spiritual lethargy, passivity and languor. ¬†I wonder if we don’t sometimes become so comfortable, settled, cozy and tucked into our daily routines that our spiritual lives become dull, shallow and even moribund. ¬† Perhaps God is making a clarion call to our hearts to shake off the allure of comfort that can unknowingly poison us with a sleeping sickness that deadens our senses to God’s alarms

The enemy of great is good, the adversary of excellent is average and the foe of extraordinary is moderate. ¬†Let’s love God with¬†great sincerity,¬†excellent pursuit and¬†extraordinary¬†passion.

would you like an upgrade?

 When I was growing up, my parents did a great job of helping me to try out new things & to look for possible talents and interests that I might have.  One area that we explored quite a bit was piano playing.  I started taking piano lessons when I was 5 years old and over the course of several years, I had the privilege of taking lessons from a local family who was reknowned for their piano skills & abilities.  In this family, the father, mother & a few of the kids gave piano lessons.  They were all concert pianists and did their level best to improve my skills, with a minimal effort of cooperation on my part.  And that was the key problem.  I was settling for mediocre when they were striving for excellence.  As a result, everyone was frustrated:  my parents, this concert pianist family & myself.  

With this contrast between excellence & mediocrity, I think that there can be many areas in our lives where we settle for average when we could have extraordinary.¬† Let’s not allow our faith to be one of these areas.¬† I don’t want my relationship with God to be average – I want to be like Moses in Ex 33, a friend with whom God speaks face to face.¬† To me, this is an extraordinary relationship w God & Moses’ example stirs me up such that I won’t settle for an average walk w God.¬† How about you???