trying to keep it simple
(Today's musings of a man in thought.) I’m sitting. Typing. Thinking quietly, “The world is an incredibly complex place.” The world, it’s systems, it’s social standards, it’s economies, it’s arts and entertainment, it’s families, it’s governments, it’s desires all originate in the heart of man. There are more than 6 billion complicated people on this planet, all interweaving their lives with each other.
We are complex, complicated and full of intrigue all by ourselves. Take our hearts, passions, dreams, fears, worries, concerns, anxieties, celebrations, etc. and weave them with someone else, and then someone else, and then someone else....and well, the complexities become exponential. Visually I could imagine a web of a billion fibers, woven together. To look at it from a macro perspective, it may appear to be chaos and confusion. To be involved in the micro it would appear to make perfect sense, as we travel those complicated strands of the human web. How do we make sense of it all? I propose in the beauty of the complicated tapestry of humanity stands one figure, one man and one identity, who brings definition to it all. His name is Jesus the Christ.
History is filled with known and unknown heroes. At my early age of 39 I am growing more and more fascinated with history. In part, because I want my life to make a difference. Therefore, I seek to learn from those who have contributed their lives to making the world a better place. We have seen heroes and villains. Maybe we have felt their powerful touch. When one passes from the human chapter and enters into the eternal one we wonder if the world will again have another hero. Of course millions of heroes are alive today. They are fathers, mothers, servants, public officials, the unseen, the unheard, the undisclosed. I love them. I respect them. I admire them in the deep places of my soul. But I am speaking about more than every day heroes, I am speaking about those who have been given the high privilege of giving voice to a movement. You and I, if we were to sit, could make a long list of heroes and a lengthy list of villains. The world as we know it, is not short on such characters.
But the human character that stands alone, in my humble opinion, is Jesus the Christ. He split time into two periods. Thousands of years after his death he is still, a most controversial figure. He role modeled love in such a way that people like Mother Teresa were inspired to pour out their lives like a drink offering for the poor of Calcutta. She is one of thousands, even millions who have been changed by the love of God, by the man Jesus. God looked at the complexity described in the paragraph above and chose to give his son. Jesus willingly came for the salvation of such people. He knowingly died a painful and shameful death, so that we do not live simply existing in the web of humanity, but so that we can live with a joy whose satisfaction penetrates deeply into our souls. Somewhere in the cold web of the human story a thread goes from dull, lifeless and grey to illuminating a thousand brilliant colors of life. Can you see it? Can you see the power his death, burial and resurrection is having on the “web of humanity?” Can you see the grey web of societies coming to life, full of color? Some may call it a social anomaly, a flicker or just coincidence. But we must know different. We must believe something is happening. Could it be the seed bed of something coming to life? The love of God is awakening the human heart. We are becoming aware that there is more to life than the rat race of “everyday activity.” A spark ignites the heart. It begins to glow. White, reds, yellows, oranges and even blues shade the arousing heart. Something comes alive. How do we know? If for no other reason, because, as in The Matrix, the Sentinels of Despair, Reality, Discouragement, Finances, Disappointment or Intimidation begin to attack the infant life and strength of the human spirit. Something is coming alive and that something is the human heart. In Jesus’ death and resurrection, as well as the giving of the Holy Spirit, he empowered us to be loved and to love. He has given us the power and privilege to love others so that they too experience ultimate freedom. People do not want to live “black and white” lives. The best way I know to illustrate this is with television. Most of us by now have an HD television in our home. We watch, in great detail, our favorite athletic team, favorite movie, etc. No one I know wants to go back to the quality of television broadcasting as it was in the 50‘s, 60‘s, 70‘s, 80‘s or 90‘s. As a matter of fact, most do not want to go back even 5 years. My point is that people want to live lives in HD. They want a life that is full of color, detail, thrill, adventure, laughter, etc.
That life is found in Jesus. Freedom is full of color, not black and white.
As I look at the complexities of my environment, I must boil it down to a simple idea and thought. [The alternative is to let complexity paralyze me because I am overwhelmed and out smarted by the system.] The simple idea for me is to: a) love God and continue to fall in love with his beauty; b) love others without condition and without agenda. In doing so, my heart is awakened, becoming vibrant and alive. Color explodes from our living. Here are a few examples:
- Your joy that is unspeakable, full of God and strengthening your inner man will be noticed by all.
- Your peace in the midst of storms will be a rich, full color that others will notice and want.
- Your gentleness will be a hue and tone that looks excellent on you and on anyone else that chooses to wear it.
These are just a few examples of how the love of God and the purpose of the Holy Spirit awakens us and makes us fully alive. Is the world complex? Yes! Will it get more complicated? Probably! Does it have to overwhelm us? No! How do we live successfully in the midst of it? Surrender our cold , dark hearts to Jesus and let him awaken our inner man. He will give to us his love. He will give to us His Spirit. He will give to us his power. He will develop in us his nature and character. He will lead us with wisdom, revelation, knowledge, understanding, counsel and might. To God be all adoration, praise and celebration for the great things He has done. The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come Lord Jesus.”