Jump Start # 2959
James 1:19 “this you know, my beloved brethren. But let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger.”
On this side of the pandemic we’ve come to realize that things are not “normal” or as they once were. Just about everywhere you go, there are signs asking for help or hiring. Short staffed is hurting hospitals, restaurants and the construction industry. Another sign that things are not as they once were is finding some shelves empty at the stores, some supplies are delayed, and some orders are taking a long time to be completed. Short staffed and out of supplies is a real problem. In many cities, large parking lots are filled with new cars and trucks, waiting for chips to be put in them. The supply of chips is extremely low.
There are some things that never seem to run out. Here’s my short list:
· Anger is always in supply. Tempers flare when people drive. Tempers flare when people get to work. Tempers flare when people go home. There never seems to be a time when society has just run out of anger. That just doesn’t happen.
· Impatience is also always in supply. Impatient people quickly become angry people. And, because supplies run thin and the staff is short, people become more impatient. It would be wonderful if there was a quota on how much impatience there was in a day. Once it was reached, there simply would be no more.
· Opinions are always in supply. Everyone has an opinion and everyone expects you to not only hear theirs but to agree with it. And, if you want to start an argument all you have to do is inject the topic of masks, vaccines and social distancing into a conversation. Blood pressures will rise, as will the volume of speech. Everyone knows what needs to be done, it seems. There never seems to be a shortage of opinions. They are always in supply.
· God’s grace is also always in supply. God never gives us a limit on how many times we can be forgiven. He never has a level or cap on forgiveness. Nearly every prayer we pray includes, “forgive us of our sins.” And, with all the impatience, anger and opinions mounting around us and within us, it’s a good thing that there is plenty of grace to go around. No one hogs it all. No one takes so much grace that you can’t have any.
· God’s blessings are always in supply. Today is one such blessing. Today is a gift from God. Jesus could have come last night. Your soul could have been required of you last night. But those things didn’t happen. Here you are, and you have a day given to you. Blessings of hope, prayer, love, fellowship, health are abundant to each of us. The blessings never run out.
· God’s love for you is always in supply. God loves you. He loves you when you do what is right. He loves you when you do what is wrong. He doesn’t want you to disobey Him. He doesn’t want you to walk freely away from Him. But if you do, He still loves you. God has given you His word, the Bible. He has sent the best of Heaven in Jesus. He has put people in your life to help you and guide you. God has never given up on you. The love of God is always in stock. It is always on the shelf. It is always available.
So, this is the world we live in today. We can focus upon the anger, impatience and opinions. We can be bothered by those things and live in such a way that we don’t see anything else. Or, we can focus upon God’s grace, blessings and love. Those wonderful things are what can fill our hearts and our conversations. We can be sour and bitter because of the way things are, or we can be thankful and hopeful because of the Lord.
I wish the devil would run out of ideas and leave us alone. He doesn’t and he won’t. But our God is greater than the devil. Focus upon the goodness of the Lord and walk closely behind Jesus. All around us are those who are centered and defined by anger, impatience and opinions. You can join that crowd or be one who joyfully and thankfully sees the sunshine of God’s grace, blessings and love.
We’re all out—that may be in some things. Thankfully, that can never be said of God.