Thursday, April 29, 2010

Nine Tips to Finding Things that are Lost

I am a world class finder if I do say so myself. That is, when it comes to finding things that are lost I am the go-to guy. I pride myself on being able to find it if it is lost. In fact, I can’t not want to try and find it (I’m aware of the bad grammar). It becomes a challenge.

1. It’s got to be somewhere. Everything is somewhere unless the earth has swallowed it up in some biblical fashion. Barring that, it has to be somewhere. In fact it is probably right where you (or someone else) left it. I say probably because sometimes strange things happen.

A few weeks ago, we lost our keys. There are only a few places where we put our keys and it made no sense that we could not find them. After a long search, I looked behind the shelf (again) on which we frequently place our keys and noticed that somehow they had been pushed off the shelf but had never reached the floor. Instead, they were caught in the phone wires and dangling in the air. Alas, sometimes we don’t find what we have lost. I lost some important keys a few years ago in our home and never found them. I suspect they accidentally fell in the trash or something. But, rest assured, in most cases, that which is lost has got to be somewhere.

2. Don’t panic! Panic makes you hurry. It causes us not to look thoroughly in each possible place. Then, later, when we haven’t found it, we feel like we have exhausted every possibility. In truth, we haven’t really searched properly and have to do it all again. We usually find things in places where we thought we had already looked.

I have a lot of books. They are not organized and so I am frequently searching the shelves for that book I know I have. Somehow, we can look right past the very thing we are looking for, especially when it is one lost thing among many things that we are not looking for. On top of that, panic doesn’t help. It has to be somewhere so slow down, and don’t panic.

3. If it isn’t in the likely places it must be in an unlikely place. This is simple yet profound (if profundity is allowed in such a banal discussion). So, if your keys, or whatever, aren’t where they are supposed to be, check the refrigerator.

4. If it is a pair of things and you have found one, the other is probably not too far away. Think about it: you can’t find your other shoe. Unless you have a habit of taking off one shoe downstairs, walking awhile with the other shoe still on and then taking it off upstairs, then probably you did what you always do. Search in the same proximity as the shoe you found.

5. Don’t automatically blame someone else. It will be egg on your face when you find it and realize that it was your fault or no one’s.

6. Don’t give up, don’t get discouraged. If you have looked every place you can think of with still no findy-find, take a break and try again a little later. Don’t hesitate to ask for help. Two sets of eyes are better than one.

That brings us to one last option that has proven to be a real help many times: Ask God to help you. I know there may be a number of reasons why you might not do that: you don’t want to bother him with small things, etc. But, the fact is that He cares about you and will get involved with you even in the mundane things. Besides, sometimes it’s not mundane. Just a few weeks ago, one thing led to another and I lost my eight gig thumb drive. Some very important things were on that drive. I looked everywhere (I thought) but could not find it. I prayed about it and it dawned on me to check a place where I had not considered and I found it! In time to keep it from going through the washing machine.

How about you? Do you have a process that helps you find things or a story about something lost that was finally found?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What do you believe about the Rapture of the Church?

I have known about the Rapture of the church for my whole life it seems. I can remember coming into the house when I was just a little kid (7 or 8) and being afraid that I had missed the Rapture because I couldn't find my mother right away.

Oddly enough, I somehow pictured the rapture to be a square platform with a cable attached to each corner and then each cable on the other end gathered together. Odd I know.

I have a question: If the enormous crowd in Revelation chapter 7 is a multitude of people rescued from the great tribulation, presumably for not taking the mark of the beast (which is typically what most Evangelicals believe and which is not depicted until Rev. 13), then who is the group mentioned in Revelation 15:2 who are specifically noted as the ones who were victorious over the beast, his image, and the number of his name? Are we really expecting a crowd that can't be counted to come out of the great tribulation as we have traditionally defined it (i.e., those who are beheaded for not taking the mark)?

Another interesting thought about traditional evangelical prophecy interpretation and what the Bible seems to say literally is the term "great tribulation." Normally, pre-trib preachers and teachers group the entire seven year period under the rubric of the great tribulation, when in fact, the great tribulation is a time of great distress that will come upon the world at the time of the abomination of desolation (3 1/2 years into the seven year "tribulation" period).

Anybody still with me?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Moving Experience

Went to see The Screwtape Letters in Manhattan last evening. I enjoyed it very much. I almost didn't make it though.

I have been having motion sickness lately. I had a life-changing encounter with it two weeks ago coming back from New Jersey. I thought I was going to die. I didn't. Death would have been a sweet release from the horrible sensation.

People say, "Does it help for you to be in the front seat?" I was driving!! Yesterday, I wound up taking the train into Manhattan just to avoid the car trip. I took Dramamine and all was going pretty well until I got into a taxi. The short taxi ride threatened to pierce through the Dramamine haze I was clinging to.

Bottom line? Go see The Screwtape Letters at the WESTSIDE THEATRE 407 W 43rd St. Take the train. Take Dramamine. Pray then take the taxi. Enjoy the program. Take more Dramamine. Arrive at home. Thank God.