August 29, 2016

What Sounds Good

My children are grown and have their own homes, so as an empty-nester I no longer have to have a plan for supper. Consequently, when it’s time to think about the evening meal Bill and I talk in terms of what sounds good — Mexican, Chinese, Italian. It’s as though we must tempt one another with different suggestions before we can make a decision. It’s a little embarrassing then when I hear Jesus say, “And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well” (Luke 12:29-30 NIV).

3 comments:

Steve Corey said...

Gail;

-----I would love the Lord to bring me breakfast in bed. I don’t need much for lunch. But I bet He’s really good at grillin’ rib-eyes for dinner! And I wouldn’t need to work so many long, hard hours to earn all that food. So I could spend more time reading the Bible -well- maybe just thinking about it. Then I would be in the Elijah Club. “’You shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.’ So he went and did according to the word of the LORD; he went and dwelt by the brook Cherith that is east of the Jordan. And the ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening; and he drank from the brook.” (I Kings 17:4-6)
-----Ok, oK, ok! Expecting the Lord to serve me is a bit disrespectful. Sorry, Lord. I suppose by now Elijah's ravens have learned to grill. I could settle for that.
-----This “…seek His kingdom, and all these things will be given…” thing never did completely square up in my mind until I flipped my carpenter’s square and checked its angle again. I've learned that we people are so faulty, even our own measuring devices can be off. If you really want to be sure the board is level, flip the level over and see if the bubble still centers. If it doesn’t, get a new level. If you want to make sure the cutting-mark is really square, flip the square over and measure from its other side. If you really want to know the Word’s angle, flip responsibility over, and check it again.
-----I love Paul’s estimation of the kingdom of heaven. It’s simple. And it lacks all that guesswork. “For the kingdom of God is not food and drink but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.” (Rom 14:17) When I finally considered what exactly “righteousness” might be, then the whole “…will be given…” thing flipped over quickly.
-----Maybe the first important thing about righteousness is what it is not. Jesus was not impressed with the tithing and gaudy prayers, and ritualism of the Pharisees. And how many times does the Old Testament state that God was not pleased with the sacrifices of bulls and rams? “Shoot, man! I own the whole world! If I’m hungry I’ll just go bag an elk,” or something like that God once stated. Righteousness isn’t doing religious things.
-----“Do I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats? Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High,” (Ps 50:13-14) He went on to say, probably not with elk on His breath. Thanksgiving is interesting. In order to be thankful, you must first correctly perceive your situation and what became of it by whose doing (or will become of it.) The reason thanksgiving is sacrifice is because we must flip our squares and levels over, testing them as much as they test the situation, and correcting them when they test wrong. That willingness to abandon your own misperception about some insufficiency and then to accept God’s viewpoint is sacrifice; it is an important ingredient of dying to yourself and coming alive in the Lord.
(continued...)

Steve Corey said...

(...continued)
-----Righteousness begins in the mind as a result of desire for it compelling your search for it. Of course, a thought does not end in the mind, but the substance of it extends on into actions. Therefore, righteousness is actions and habits squared with a mind squaring and leveling up to God’s Word. Righteousness is simply doing what God indicates as the correct solution for any given situation. Righteousness being a fundamental of the kingdom of God means the kingdom is sought by doing right from desiring right.
-----It is God’s Word which says the sluggard sleeping at seedtime will hunger at harvest time. It was Christ’s apostle who said that if you don’t work you should not eat. These ideas don’t mean that our food and needs are entirely our responsibility. God meets with supply in hand those laboring from responsibility in heart. We participate in each other, He in providing, we in doing rightly. And when we begin to habitually do most all things approximately right, peace results and joy becomes a rather accurate level and square.


Love you all,
Steve Corey

Gail Marvel said...

Steve Corey has left a new comment on your post "What Sounds Good":

(...continued)
-----Righteousness begins in the mind as a result of desire for it compelling your search for it. Of course, a thought does not end in the mind, but the substance of it extends on into actions. Therefore, righteousness is actions and habits squared with a mind squaring and leveling up to God’s Word. Righteousness is simply doing what God indicates as the correct solution for any given situation. Righteousness being a fundamental of the kingdom of God means the kingdom is sought by doing right from desiring right.
-----It is God’s Word which says the sluggard sleeping at seedtime will hunger at harvest time. It was Christ’s apostle who said that if you don’t work you should not eat. These ideas don’t mean that our food and needs are entirely our responsibility. God meets with supply in hand those laboring from responsibility in heart. We participate in each other, He in providing, we in doing rightly. And when we begin to habitually do most all things approximately right, peace results and joy becomes a rather accurate level and square.


Love you all,
Steve Corey