Monday, April 18, 2011

Convo with Pastor - Psalm 52:1-3

For the choir director: A psalm of David,
regarding the time Doeg the Edomite told Saul
that Ahimelech had given refuge to David.
 
You call yourself a hero, do you?
You love evil more than good
and lies more than truth.
Psalm 52:1-3
 
In my discipleship group, we follow a simple pattern to discover God's presence in the midst of our daily circumstances. We ...
  1. Observe (Me)
  2. Reflect (Me + God ... through prayer)
  3. Discuss (Me + God + Faithful Others)
  4. Plan (Me + God + Others + Me Again)
  5. Accountability (Me + God + Others + Me + Others Again)
  6. Act (Me + God + Others + Me + Others + God ... indeed action with God's power)
Makes sense, right? But here's the problem. I'm busy. So are you. Therefore how many of us simplify our decision making process to ...
  1. Observe (Me)
  2. Act (Me + Me)
Now, I'm a pretty faithful guy. I know pretty well God's revelation (his Word), our Lord's purposes (love God and neighbor), Biblical wisdom (general principals for faithful living). But when I'm in a hurry, I go on auto-pilot. I rely on past encounters with God to guide my present ... rather than seeking the fresh bread of a fresh revelation. (Indeed, I settle for the week-old bread from past encounters. Ever done that?)
 
That's the sad story of Ahimelech. He knew two things: First, he knew that helping the poor and hungry was godly and noble; therefore, Ahimelech helped David when David came to him in a time of trial. (Indeed, Ahimelech gave David bread.) Ahimelech also knew David's prominence in the court of King Saul; therefore, Ahimelech acted in a politically wise and expedient way by helping David. In other words, Ahimelech acted on autopilot. He observed and acted without reflecting with God and others.
 
And catastrophe struck. David was a wanted man, and Saul -- by the sword of Doeg the Edomite -- killed Ahimelech and eighty-five other priests.
 
Now, I don't want to pin that all on Ahimelech!!! Saul and Doeg were the evil ones with blood on their hands. And even David deceived Ahimelech by lying about why he was there. But the priest -- and you and me -- should not have gone so much on autopilot. We should all pause long enough to check for a fresh revelation -- a revelation as warm and wonderful as fresh bread.
 
In Christ's Love,
a guy who loves fresh bread
(so why don't I always stop to
look for a fresh revelation)
--------------------------------
Would it be better to work on auto-pilot and rely on past experiences with God than to do nothing? Better to eat or offer week old bread than nothing? But that is beside the point!!

And - the quick action without thinking can get you in more trouble than doing nothing while waiting for directions.  Loving evil more than good, truth more than lies.  Being more reflective and observing prior to making plans ... seeking God's guidance and will in ALL cases ... will go a very long way toward helping not making auto-pilot mistakes.

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Speak gently. carefully. thoughtfully. graciously. humbly.

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