Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

Warning Signs

I Corinthians 10:11 – “These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come.”

Ready to change lanes on the freeway last week, my car’s warning system notified me that there was a vehicle in my blind spot. 

This allowed me to avoid what would have been a horrific accident.

There are a lot of early warning devices nowadays and although some may be irritating (like the one on the thermostat of our home’s heating/cooling system) they are meant to help consumers avoid catastrophes.

There are many warnings in the Bible, too.

The Apostle Paul’s name always comes to mind when I think about those who were sent to warn others. I would like to tell you his words were always heeded, but that was not the case. 

Some of the saddest and most tragic stories in the scriptures are those about men and women who failed to heed God’s warnings—and the consequences they experienced.

Thank God for His Word and for those, like Paul, who were obedient to His commands. It is their stories that make us aware of the results of certain actions/decisions.

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The New Normal

8479540406_1a89fe4025Acts 22:14,15- “Then he (Ananias) said: ‘The God of our ancestors has chosen you to know his will and to see the Righteous One and to hear words from his mouth. You will be his witness to all people of what you have seen and heard.”

Things are forever changing in our world.

Foods we were told that were good for us in the past, are now reported to actually harm us. So, we change our diet.

A friend or relative requires our care. We rearrange our daily schedule to accommodate the added responsibilities.

Retirement, divorce, catastrophic illness.

All of these changes create what we now call the “new normal.”

A wedding, a new job, the birth of a baby, the purchase of our dream home—even these bring changes in routines—and we adapt to them by assimilating the new normal” into our lives.

Paul had a life-changing experience on the road to Damascus. As a result of meeting God, his life of persecuting Christians was transformed to one of preaching and defending other Christians. As a result, he often lived for months and years in prison—the Apostle Paul’s “new normal.”

When we meet Christ, our lives…relationships…desires…past habits—our very focus changes as he calls us to live a new life in Christ—our “new normal.”

But, we are not alone. The The Holy Spirit guides us through each adjustment on our way to our eternal home and the


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Character Arc

Acts 9:27– “(Barnabas)…brought him to the apostles. He told them how Saul on his journey had seen the Lord and that the Lord had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had preached fearlessly in the name of Jesus.”

Yesterday, at a writing workshop, we discussed the “character arc”. This simply means the change that happens within the character, over the course of a movie or book. In other words, the growth resulting from what they learn along their journey…the transformation.

Real life is like that, too, isn’t it? It’s a journey. Hopefully, we learn a lot along the way so that, by the end, we are not the same person we were when we started out.

We’ve changed.

Paul was someone with a HUGE character arc. He went from being a persecutor of Christians to being called of God on the road to Damascus.

What made the change?

It was the experience of meeting Jesus.

He was transformed from being a person filled with hate to a man so filled with compassion and love for others that he spent the rest of his life as a missionary, taking God’s message wherever he was led.

The change on the inside was manifested by a change on the outside—in his actions and behavior that everyone could see.

Because of this, he was beaten, thrown into jail, and eventually martyred.

This is character arc of the highest degree. A person so changed that he willingly gives his life for the cause.

There are brave people in our world right now who are being persecuted and killed for their belief in God. When asked if they are Christians, they bravely answer “yes”, giving their lives for the sake of the cross.

We may not ever face death for our beliefs, but let’s ask ourselves if we are willing to give our lives for our beliefs…an hour or two a week to help those in need…60-90 minutes to share the gospel?

If we know Jesus—if we have met Him and allowed Him to change us as we journey our own Damascus Road—then we will be willing to help bring His message to a lost and dying world.

One hour, one day, one compassionate act at a time.

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