Thursday, March 8, 2012

Green Arm Bands and The Words of Job

I wanted to post a pic of the wicked-cool scar
but it probably wouldn't get past the censors.
Some of you know that I've been in a hospital in Singapore since Tuesday letting the docs give me a wicked-cool scar across my neck...all in the name of taking out my wayward thyroid.  The troublesome organ had a tumor and some other growths in it and it was just time to kick it out of the house.

They band you up in these places like a migrating waterfowl.  The white one reminds my anesthetized mind who I am.  I forget what the orange one is.  The green one classifies me as a "high fall risk".  Translated into real terms, this means you're not allowed to go to the bathroom by yourself because they think the drugs they've given you, so that you will feel no pain, may make you keel over and bump your head...thus causing you some pain.  But what are we worried about?  You're full of narcotics so it wouldn't hurt, right?

High fall risk.

Isn't life simply one extended high fall risk?  We're all standing on the cliff of eternity...we just don't sense it most of the time.

After a couple days of waiting for results, the surgeon just came by to let me know that the biopsy on the tumor was clear.

I guess I had been preparing myself for whatever road the Lord wanted to take us down...but I really, really didn't have any desire to veer down the cancer road at this point in life.

I have no idea how I'd have reacted if the news had gone the other way...but all day I've been chewing on the words of Job:

Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him.

What a thought.  This world is not my home...just passing through in the arms of Jesus...if he takes me now, so be want me to question his judgment?  What peace there is in not having your roots down in this transient place.

Saturday, March 3, 2012


Reading in the Gospel of John these days.  This morning I came across the following laser sharp words that Jesus directed at the religious establishment of his day: accept praise from one another, 
yet make no effort to obtain the praise that comes from the only God?

When I consider the different groups of people that Jesus engaged and I try to figure out which group I would fit into, I'd really like to hope that I'd fit into the 'disciple' group, but I have a fear that drives me to conviction and watchfulness that I'm on the edge of falling into the 'religious establishment' group.  Two thousand years ago, Jesus spoke those brutally loving words to the guys who had the most to lose.... and I can easily imagine him speaking them to those of us entrenched in organized Christianity today.

We commend each other heartily and are delighted when our peers think we're cutting edge, latest-thinking, missional people of ministry.  But how often do we actually set policy, shape vision and apply resources with the specific goal of hearing God say "well done!" ?

Guilty as charged.  And again grateful for the powerful, penetrating, life-changing Word.