Don’t Be a Porcupine

My daughter was meeting some new people & she was coaching me about my social etiquette, endeavoring to be helpful 🙂
At the end of her coaching efforts, she concluded with, “Mom, don’t wear your porcupine suit – smile!” While some people might be put off by her input, I was grateful. She wasn’t being disrespectful or belittling. She was sincerely trying to help me & I figure help is generally a good thing. And on that note, it’s also really good to be helpful!  

In John 14:16, Jesus says that He will ask the Father to send us the Helper, aka Holy Spirit. Seems to me that Help is kind of like the Holy Spirit’s nickname – so receiving & giving help can be like cooperating with the Holy Spirit in our daily living. Let’s endeavor to both give & receive help, as we stay in synch with the Holy Spirit throughout this day!

X-Rays

Going through airport security in foreign countries can be a very interesting experience, to put it mildly. The security in some countries is nothing more than a suggestion & in other countries, I’ve had some experiences that I just don’t talk about. But the whole point is that they want see past a person’s surface presentation, X-ray vision. 

It seems to me that the ability to see beyond the surface is really important. So many times in our lives we can be distracted & even deceived by mere appearances. Some people look amazing on the surface but if you dig a little deeper, they’re a disaster in every way. On the flip side, I’ve met people whose surface appearance was far from appealing. They’re disheveled & unimpressive from a quick glance, but underneath, they’re nothing less than magnificent humans.  And this is one of the things I most love about the Holy Spirit, Whom Jesus also calls the Spirit of truth. The Holy Spirit has X-ray vision, knows who we really are on the inside & remains deeply committed, faithful & loving with us. The Holy Spirit empowers us to be who God has made us to be 🙂

cheering!!!!

With some maternal encouragement (always the sports enthusiast that I am), my daughter decided to play soccer this Spring for the 1st time & she has really come to enjoy the experience.  While her first game was absolutely traumatic, it’s been an awesome learning curve for both of us.  Possibly her greatest take-away so far (we might be in the playoffs), is to not quit.  There’s lots to say about that, but that’s her story 🙂

For me, probably the greatest take-away is to stay positive.  My sideline role is to cheer, be encouraging, stay positive & upbeat, even when it seems discouraging.  Another take-away that I TOTALLY love is that while I’m limited to a sideline role of cheering, the Holy Spirit in our lives doesn’t have to stay on the sidelines, but can have an active & integrated role in helping us with our daily living.  Of course the Holy Spirit cheers for us, but let’s know that there’s lots more that the Holy Spirit can do in our lives, particularly when we let down our preconceptions, guards and boundaries 🙂

hot topic: sherpa people

sherpa-everest-trek-nepal

Sherpas are an ethnic people group in Nepal who are often hired by mountaineers to help with the ascent of various mountains including Mount Everest.  At the end of last week, there was a terrible avalanche in Nepal at the base of Mt Everest & 16 sherpas were killed.  Sherpas are amazing people & are often the unsung heroes of the Himalays (to quote a famous sherpa).  Sherpas do lots of work & help people achieve really amazing & super-human feats.  They’ve been doing this for many decades but are often overlooked or even unheard of.

In some ways, the sherpas kind of remind me of the Holy Spirit, our Helper Whom Jesus said would never leave us & Who helps us, even when we don’t know it.  Perhaps it might be a good idea to take a minute now to thank the Helper for being our constant guide & help in the journey of our life.  Maybe the Holy Spirit is kind of like our supernatural sherpa  ,)

volatile

Ok friends, I’m writing this blog knowing that I’m stepping into some very serious controversy.  In the past several weeks there have been lots of feedback on John MacArthur’s book, “Strange Fire”, a book that takes a critical position of the Charismatic movement in today’s world.  There are more than enough brilliant people taking sides on Mr MacArthur’s position – in both opposition and support.  Whatever your thoughts or opinions are about Charistmatics or Mr MacArthur’s beliefs, let’s keep in mind what Paul says about the works of the flesh in Galatians 5:19-21.  Such works include not only immorality and idolatry, but the works of the flesh also include:  enmity, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions and factions.  Let’s remember that Jesus prayed that we, His followers, would be one like He is one with the Father, John 17:21-22.

No matter if you agree or disagree with Mr MacArthur, if we are followers of Jesus, then we don’t need to be disagreeable with a fellow follower of Jesus – smile 🙂

Just Love

I think if we are honest, we all want to be loved rather than used & we do crazy things for love that we think is genuine. But I’m having a strange thought this morning – perhaps we are supposed to be the channel through which God genuinely loves others. Furthermore, we might just be the only encounter someone may have today with genuine love. And with this in mind, when God loves through me, there’s always more than enough love – no shortage of genuine love. So with the help of the Holy Spirit, The Supreme Helper, let’s let genuine love flow through us today 🙂