Taking a Big Gulp

Do you remember the 32 oz Big Gulp from 7-Eleven?  It was a catchy name and probably helped put 7-Eleven stores “on the map”!  43 years later, it’s still going strong. 

Kara Neilson, a marketing firm director had this to say about it:

“The Big Gulp represents a point where something changed in a radical way…” *

I don’t want to talk about soft drinks today or convenience stores, but I do want to share an “ah-ha” moment I had while reading in Isaiah this morning. 

To this one I will look [graciously], to him who is humble and contrite in spirit, and who [reverently] trembles at My word and honors My commands.” ~ Isa. 66:2b Amp.

Today was certainly not the first time I have read the admonition to “tremble”.  When you serve the awesome God we serve, it’s a given!  But the verse in Isaiah caused me to stop and think.

There are certain things I do “for the Lord” that are a pleasure.  They fall within my comfort zone and require effort, but certainly do not cause me to tremble. 

But then… there are things that the Lord has asked me to do that bring me to my knees and fill me with fear.  In other words, it makes me GULP!  And there has been a time or two, the direction God wanted me to take made me take a BIG GULP!  (And I’m not talking about sipping a soft drink!)

   Me: Really God?? You want me to do THAT?  But my life will “change in a radical way!”

   God: Yep, it will.  And what’s wrong with that?

No wonder wholeheartedly following God’s will for our lives takes Courage! 

Here’s a thought: If it doesn’t cause you to gulp, it may not be from God. 


I Think I Heard A Noise

Several years ago, David was out of town and I was home alone.  Please understand – I am not a “scaredy-cat”, but I must admit that I don’t relish being alone at night.  That particular night, I was in bed reading with ear plugs squashed in my ears and the sound of rain and thunder resonating throughout the room (thanks to a “Sounds of Nature” CD). 

Then came the dreaded thought, “Did I hear a noise??”  I took out one of my ear plugs… sure enough someone was pounding on the door. 

BE STILL MY SOUL!!  Who is it?  What is going on?

I crept downstairs, and peeked outside… Whew! Relief! It was my son-in-law, Jonathan.  David had dispatched him to check on me because he had been trying to call me but never got an answer.  (I didn’t know it, but the ringer of the phone in our bedroom had been turned off.)

I was ignorant of his calls and he was ignorant of my safety. 

Someone once said “ignorance is bliss.”  I choose to disagree.  In most cases ignorance is unproductive and can even be dangerous.  Case in point – the ignorant unbelievers of Jesus’ day.

Could our leaders possibly believe that he is the Messiah?  But how could he be? For we know where this man comes from. When the Messiah comes, he will simply appear; no one will know where he comes from.” ~ John 7: 26b-27

Were their assumptions true?  Were there no clues about where the Messiah would come from? 

Uh… what about – He would be born in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2); be called out of Egypt (Hosea 11:1) and bring light to Galilee (Isaiah 9:1-2)?   If they had only taken the time to study the Torah with open hearts, ask questions and seek to understand, they would have known the truth instead of making assumptions based on ignorance.

When it comes to the Word of God, the more we know, the better

Ignorance is not bliss.

Studying scripture and getting to know the God we serve, can mean the difference between turmoil and peace… brokenness and wholeness… life and death.

Is Someone pounding on your door?  Take out the earplugs and listen.  It may be the voice of Truth.  (Revelation 3:20)

Listening with you…