Sunday, September 27, 2015

Reckoning the Real

Reckoning the Real

If you have listened to me for long enough you will have heard me speak of little "t" truth and big "T" Truth.  In this blog I dub little r real for the visible world and big R Real for the spiritual world.

The following thoughts were formed by meditating on a section from The Pursuit of God by A.W Tozer.  The section is at the end of section 4 about the word reckon.

According to Tozer we need to reckon by faith the invisible, spiritual world.  The spiritual world is the big R Real world, while the visible world is actually the little r real world.  Most of us concentrate on the little r real world?  Why is that?
Tozer claims we have bad thought habits.  He says the world of the senses intrudes on our attention the whole of our lives. We habitually think of the visible world as real and while not denying the reality of the unseen world we doubt the realness of it.  In other words, we flip the capital and the lower case letters.  We deem the big R Real world to be the one we can see.

Part of our bad thought habits, and our uncorrected thinking as Tozer sees it, is the contrast we make the spiritual and the real.  That contrast does not even exist!  Yes, a contrast between the spiritual and the material, the temporal and the eternal, the visible and the invisible but between the spiritual and the real?  NO!

If we want to truly follow God in Spirit and in Truth we must correct these thinking errors and seek to be other-worldly.  In other words we need to have a big R Real world focus.  To Tozer:

 "The "other world", which is the object of this world's disdain and the subject of the drunkard's mocking song, is our carefully chosen goal and the object of our holiest longing.  BUT, we must avoid the common fault of pushing the "other world" into the future.  It is not future, but present."

I have taken road, path, journey, as my metaphor for the race talked about in the New Testament.  Hebrews says we run our race looking unto Jesus. I, like Christian in Pilgrim's Progress, am on my way to the Celestial Kingdom with my little scroll of God's word in hand.  Lovely picture, right?

But while reading this passage in Tozer I began to see that although my goal is to stay in the middle of the path and not wind up in Doubting Castle or Vanity Fair....maybe I'm not most of the time "looking unto Jesus".

What if one of my eyes symbolically is seeing the little r real world and the other eye is seeing the big R Real world.  My eyes are working together but my concentration is on the visible little r real world because hey, it's visible.  Which kind of makes sense for me because I keep wondering why I can't stay present to God throughout the day.  I keep getting sucked back into the visible world.

This got me to thinking, what if I patch up the eye (symbolically) that is constantly seeing the visible world, to the point of mostly living like the visible world is the only world?  What if I put a patch over that eye?

This led me to do some reading about eye patches.  I thought this info from WebM.D. was so interesting:

Amblyopia, commonly called "lazy eye," is an eye condition in which one eye is not used enough for the visual system in the brain to develop properly. If one eye is weak, the brain ignores the images from it and uses only the images from the stronger eye, leading to poor vision in the weak eye. Normal vision develops with regular, equal use of the eyes. Treatment for amblyopia includes patching the stronger eye to force the weaker eye to develop better vision. Early treatment can usually reverse the condition.

Did you hear that?  Normal vision develops with the regular, equal use of the eyes.  But I don't want normal vision.  I want that spiritual vision, the vision that sees the unseen, the big R Real. 

Most of you know that I recently got off FB.  I'd say I was prompted by the Spirit to from reading this book, another book called The Shape of Living by David F. Ford and doing a Beth Moore study on the book of Daniel. 

Some think that you can be so heavenly minded you are no earthly good.  I think Tozer would reject that.  After all, even with an eye patch I will still be able to hear, smell, taste and touch the visible world.  But I will be seeing more of Jesus, high and lifted up.  I may even see the powers and principalities and be able to shout out some warnings to others.

Maybe getting off FB is my attempt at an eye patch. 

I have really appreciated this book.  So much food for thought.  So good that my plan is to read it every year on New Years Eve.  Maybe we can do it together.

As usual PEACE OUT, or maybe with my eye patched,  the new sign off should be MAY THE PEACE OF CHRIST BE WITH YOU!

If you like what you are reading on my blog, could you please share it with your friends on Facebook and on other social media?  Thanks!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

So Long Facebook

This world is not my home.  I am just passing through, trying to be light in the darkness.  My light is but a flicker here and a flicker there.  I find my mind and feelings overwhelmed by the culture around me.  Understandably sitting in a culture numbs me to the effects it is having on my life.  

I am choosing to get off Facebook  because my presence on it does more harm to me than good to least from what I can tell.   I will miss some of you, but there are other ways to be in touch with people. 

Many recent thoughts, at least in the last year or so, have me convinced that this is the right thing for me to do.  Off the top of my head I can think of these:

1.  The beginning of Hebrews 12 :  We are told to lay aside every weight and the sin that clings to us.  I have to say that FB is a weight.  If I am trying to run my race, I don't need the weight of FB around my ankle.  This weight takes the form of time spent on FB when I could be doing more profitable things.

2.  The gospel verse about more of Him and less of me.  That takes intention and intention takes time and energy.  FB is about me, mine, my opinions, etc.  Yes, some of it is about others but for me, it is a way to express MYSELF.

3.  Paul in the New Testament says he is determined to know nothing but Christ.  Novel!

4.  I have been told I am preaching to the choir.  Well, that sounds like a colossal waste of time to me!

5.  I have just started a study of the book of Daniel and am struck by the resolve of Daniel to not be polluted or watered-down by the culture he finds himself in.  That took a lot of guts.  Desperate times call for desperate measures. 

6.  The end is near.  No, I have no idea when.  If the Lord returns today, would I want Him to find me on Facebook?  No.

7.  People are perishing all around me.  You'd think I could find some more profitable uses of my time.  For example, how about praying more?  Hmmm.  Good idea. 

8.  And like I have said before, for me, Facebook is pretty isolating.  And no, I don't just want to share pictures of my food....which seem to get the most attention of anything I happen to post!

I had the most wonderful weekend.  I went away with Linda and we had some of the most spiritually uplifting conversations I have had this year.  Ditto to Alicia Harley when we discussed Benner's Presence and Encounter.  I want to interact like this with others often. Ok, actually I'd like to do it daily!   I don't know how to make that happen BUT I am sure it's not going to happen on Facebook. 

I am very interested in what you are reading, thinking, and praying about and how it is effecting your life.  I hope you will email or text me about it.  Maybe we can meet for coffee or Face Time (whatever that is!) or Skype.

Thanks for listening.