Petty People, Passing Opportunities and Life in Perspective

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I would doubt that there is anyone who has not suffered with pettiness. I can get petty over the dumbest of things. People (aka grandchildren) getting into my art supplies. I have cheap colored pencils that I keep for the grandkids to use and then I have Prismacolor Colored pencils that cost up to a $100 for a relatively small number. It is a rarity that they even want to use them. Now, of course that’s being a good steward, but how much of the lead will they really use if under guidance. Some would not even consider that petty, but I do. Now, I can also be petty over favorite cookies. I have a few that I am big fans of, I have six grand children, who like their grandmother, love cookies. They of course are not picky, nor do they understand the cost of “high dolla” brands or generic brands, or the fact that many of the individual cake brands now come 5 to a box and I have six grandchildren, so two of us get left out. I told you I could be petty.

I’m a tad petty over favorite seating in the house, and children who don’t respect their elders. Wow… I officially sound like an old, old granny. But it’s how I was brought up. When an elder walks into a room, you offer them your seat. And if you happen to be in Noni’s or Poppy’s favorite chair, you get up without being ask. See… petty.

But this morning I’m wondering how many people in Ukraine care who’s sitting where. I’ve read the posts of some who are there, hunkered down in a basement or a shelter, praying not to be found by the Russians. That dear friends is life in perspective.

Although there were no tanks or bombs in the story, the attacks on the early church and the persecution they faced was much like what the Ukrainians face. They did nothing to warrant becoming a target. They were not aggressive, they were just there. Unlike Ukraine it was not about geography but about believing something different. It boiled down to a group of people believing they deserved something that they had no rights to.

Petty Desires – a story as old as eternity

1 Peter 1:12-25 KJV
[12] Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

Angels are an entirely different order of being than humans. Human beings do not become angels after they die. Saying someone got “their wings” may sound spiritual, but it’s biblically working. Angels will never become, and never were, human beings. God created the angels, just as He created humanity. The Bible nowhere states that angels are created in the image and likeness of God, as humans (Genesis 1:26) Angels are spiritual beings that can, to a certain degree, take on physical form. Humans are physical beings, but with a spiritual aspect, they have the Spirit of God living in them. If not, they can be controlled by evil spirits. The greatest thing we can learn from the holy angels is their unquestioning obedience to God and their desire to serve Him.

Like us, angels have the ability to learn and they have desires. But their desires are God focused. When God placed the Holy Spirit within humans, it said the angels desired to look into it. It was hard for them to comprehend why God loved man so much that He would allow Himself to be crucified and then place Himself through the Spirit into mankind. Imperfect mankind. You know… petty people like me who hide the “good cookies” from babies!

Passing Desires – a story as new as the moment we live in

[13] Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; [14] As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

“Gird up the loins of your mind?” My mind has loins? No, but just as it takes a “girdle” or in new terminology a “pair of spanks” to suck in the worldly effects of Little Debbie cakes, the same is true on the worldly effects of things on my mind. With the girdle of truth; see Ephesians 6:14, since angels desire to look into the mysteries of grace, do we protect our minds as they and control our thoughts to those of a godly nature? I need a pair of brain spanks. Or maybe God just needs to spank me harder than He does for not being in control of my mind and my passing desires. I can choose such petty things to garner my attention with. When I say “a story as new as the moment we live in,” that seems to be how often my desires changes. There’s something new every few minutes in the world and my desires change the way the winds blow. Petty desires for petty things that will be yesterdays news.

Passionate Desires – a story written by the lives we live

[15] But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; [16] Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. [17] And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man’s work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:[18] Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; [19] But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: [20] Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, [21] Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God. [22] Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: [23] Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

My mind cannot wrap around the thoughts of Ukrainians and Russians alike who are passionate enough about what they believe in to stand up for it in the face of death. Those who would sooner die at the hands of evil than hide from it or run. That is true passion. I fear praying for passion for fear of what God might allow to create it in me. Have you ever had that fear? Getting a deeper understanding, (as the angels desire to have) is what I need to create in me a heart for the things of God. Perhaps then Little Debbie cookies wouldn’t be on my mind so often, and I’d use the gifts God gave me to be more expressive of the images in my world. I spend so much time thinking rather than doing, doubting rather than believing I can. There is no room for doubt in the mind of a Christian. It is another thing that I need to protect my mind from.

Perishing Desires – a story never written

[24] For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away: [25] But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

God gave us the seasons for an example of life and death and rebirth. Eternity is forever but opportunities are not. So today my thoughts and prayers are for those in harms way of petty people. Be it at war, or in this blessed place we live in today. I pray my thoughts serve as a reminder when I see someone in need of the love of Christ, that my desire will be to share with them the grace that angels desire to know.

Blessings! Shari

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Shari Johnson. (aka The Jesus Chick) has been encouraging women of faith and youth for a closer walk with Christ for over ten years. Having a burden for the leadership in American Churches, much of her writing is meant to spear on the servant of God to do more for the cause of Christ in these uncertain times. With humor, transparency and solid bible teaching Shari outlines messages that are easily understood, life applicable, and often with easily remembered points to ponder in hopes that they’ll be reflected on throughout the day and serve as encouragement on the go. Her servant’s heart is grounded in her own local church believing that it is there that the greatest impact can be made and unfortunately suffers the greatest neglect across America. Shari speaks at women’s gatherings in hopes of leaving a giggle in their soul and a burning desire to serve in their own local body of believers having it said of her “I laughed, I cried, and I was drawn to the foot of the cross…” Which is what it’s all about. For information on scheduling Shari, call her direct at (304)377-6036, message her via email at talk2shari@gmail.com or find her on Facebook!

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