It’s a Wonderful Life is one of my favorite Christmas classics. How could anyone ever forget the panic and helplessness of Bedford Falls,’ George Bailey, manager of the savings and loan? A bank examiner, going over the books, discovers a discrepancy. George is unsuccessful in attempts to find thousands of dollars, misplaced by his absent-minded uncle. The examiner, in his brief time of going over the books, changed George’s life and future.
God keeps information about each of us in a book. Will he find a discrepancy between what I claim and what my life reveals? “And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds (Revelation 20:12 NAS).” Actions do speak louder than words….
“Be a good little soldier!” A four year old takes a deep breath, wipes away tears on his shirtsleeve and tries to control his emotions. It is no easy task for a youngster, or adult. Yet, it ranks below the challenge of controlling our desires. A child wants to have things their own way, if we like to admit it or not, we do too. Paul tenderly reminded Timothy of the need for discipline in the lives of those called into active service.
“Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier (2 Timothy 2:3-4 KJV).” A good soldier is on call 24-7, relies on his basic training and his equipment. As a soldier in God’s army, I will be alert to his call, study his guidebook the Bible, and rely on his Holy Spirit.
“Would you like more coffee?” Smiling, “No, I’m good.” “Can I offer you some tea?” Shaking head, “No, I’m good.” These may sound like normal conversations but I have only one reaction: “Pardon me?” I simply do not understand how the word good came to replace I have plenty.
Yet, hidden in the misconception of good=plenty is a good lesson on faith giving. “Give, and it will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, they will pour into your lap. For whatever measure you deal out to others, it will be dealt out to you in return (Luke 6:38 NAS).” The Lord is good!
I very rarely go out to the movies. Yet; the increase in godly family oriented movies in the last few years is both surprising and encouraging. Those filmed and released through an Albany, GA church are entertaining, thought provoking, and inspirational. They have avoided profanity and explicit scenes; yet, they shed light upon troubling issues of the day.
Likely, many of today’s movie theatres have saved the expense of hiring people as guides from the lobby, to inside the seating area. In days gone by, they were carriers of bright flashlights. The management provided these guides as a courtesy to customers. Today, theatres are equipped with user-friendly track lighting along sides of aisles, at floor level. Customers can purchase favorite snacks from the concession stand, and easily maneuver their way to a favorite seat.
I not only need safety floor lighting in a darkened cinema; I need light in a world of spiritual darkness. Jesus lights my path. “Then Jesus spoke to them again: ‘I am the light of the world. Anyone who follows Me will never walk in the darkness but willhavethe light of life (John 8:12 HCS).” He is my guiding light, enabling me to carry the light and dispel darkness.
Parents and guardians have voiced it repeatedly, “I’m keeping my eye on you!” The statement is more of a warning than a message of protection. As children, we sensed the stories of them having eyes in the back of their heads might have some validity after all. We felt we were never actually out of sight. Maybe they had secret agents working in areas outside of their sphere of influence; they seemed to know even the slightest infraction.
As God’s children, we acknowledge that He is everywhere, judging not only actions but thoughts as well. Yes, He is keeping His eye on me, but it is not merely to observe my faithfulness to His commands. He lovingly never wants me to out of His sight. “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you (Psalms 32:8 NAS).” The Holy Spirit is my Counselor and guide; I never want to stray from His sight!