"What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!'"
January 30, 2013
We have all had those moments when we've unwittingly done silly things. It may be anything from inadvertently pouring milk in a glass and orange juice in the bowl of cereal in the mornings; to wearing unmatched shoes or socks; to looking for your glasses/sunglasses when they are on top of your head; to looking for your cell phone only to realize that you are talking on it; to saying the wrong thing at the wrong time; etc.....
Most times you just end up feeling scatterbrained and goofy, but occasionally there can be repercussions for your thoughtless actions. This happened recently to me; which wasn't the first time I've had to deal with my unintentional mistakes.
Generally, I shower and dress as Jon is getting ready for work in the mornings because the water is already hot and the bathroom warm. But this particular morning I decided that I needed to color my hair, so I would wait to shower and dress after I finished. I saw Jon off the work, put a load of laundry in to wash, did some emails, took Sammie out to potty, then went upstairs to color my hair. While I was waiting for the color to work, I cleaned our bathroom and bedroom. I showered and dressed and grabbed the dirty towels so I could do throw them in to wash. I saw that my housecoat was dirty, so grabbed it too. When I got downstairs, I threw the towels and housecoat into the washer and turned it on.
I went into the living room to do some things and realized I didn't have my cell phone with me. I looked around, then decided that I must have left it upstairs. I was thinking about it and didn't remember seeing my phone before coming downstairs. Suddenly, I had this thought, "I think I may have put my phone in my housecoat pocket when I took Sammie out, before going upstairs to color my hair!"
I ran into the utility room and opened up the washer (which was filled with water by that time) and looked in the pocket, and sure enough, there was my cell phone immersed under water. It wouldn't turn on or do anything whatsoever. I had heard that putting electronics in rice would help draw the moisture out so they would work again, so I hurriedly took the cover off my phone and put it in a bowl of rice.
When I told Jon about it, his response was, "We already talked about getting you a new phone and agreed that you could have one! You didn't have to go to all the trouble of ruining this one just to get a new one." He was laughing and enjoyed giving me a hard time about this.
Honestly, I hadn't had a new phone for several years. But I really wasn't in a huge hurry to get a new one. I was using Jon's old iPhone and it was working fine. But I did end up getting a new phone when this happened -- and I really do like it!
There have been several times when I have unconsciously done or said something that has hurt Jon's feelings or made him feel like I was ignoring him or being rude or was pushing him away. When he later points it out to me, I honestly don't know what he's talking about and don't remember doing what he said and am unaware that I had acted in a way that he found upsetting. I was either caught up in the situation or had my mind on other things or was scatterbrained or oblivious or was busy talking or whatever, and had no intention of making Jon feel unimportant or unwanted. It's hard for him to understand how I could unconsciously do something that he considers hurtful and rude, because to him it seems as if I'm doing it intentionally to push him away and ignore him.
Having those moments when we do something unintentionally and no one is involved is not really a big deal; but when we do things or say things without thinking and someone's feelings are hurt or it causes offense, then it is something we need to deal with and try to become more aware of.
It is sometimes easy to shrug it off as the other person's fault or to find excuses for our actions, but the bottom line is, it is we who need to find a way to control our unintentional acts and find a way to keep them from recurring over and over again. And that is not always easy to do when you are unaware when you are doing something that someone finds hurtful. I still don't have it right and am still struggling with working on this issue.
We always want others to forgive us when we've upset them, but we're not always so quick to forgive someone when they have said or done something to hurt our feelings or offended us; even though it may have been unintentional and done without thought. We don't always respond to others in the same way that we desire them to respond to us when we make mistakes and fail.
On the flip side, our actions and words are not always unintentional or done without forethought. Sometimes we meditate and stew and ponder about a situation for days or weeks, and we eventually act or speak out of our agitation and emotion. We know exactly what we're doing yet do it anyway, without thinking about the possible consequences. Or we may think about the consequences, but are so worked up that we just don't care -- at the time. It's only later as our conscience bothers us or someone confronts us about our conduct that we wish we had kept our mouth shut or not acted irrationally. We too often repent later than sooner! Instead of praying and asking God to prevent us from sinning, saying things we shouldn't, or acting in an ungodly manner, then repenting of our attitude and thoughts before we can act upon them, we wait until after we do something then feel bad and try to make amends and repent.
For the past few Sunday evenings, our pastor has been teaching on the beatitudes found in Matthew chapter five. We read the "blessed are the poor in spirit.... meek..... merciful.....pure in heart.....peacemakers" and think that there is no way we can ever have all those characteristics. It seems too hard!
There are individuals who don't want to become a Christian because they think there's no way that they can be perfect enough and do everything right all the time. What they don't realize is that none of us are perfect and we all have our struggles. Even after we become a Christian, it's still a daily struggle and learning process that lasts our entire life. Hopefully, we do improve in areas and mature as time goes by. I've been a Christian since I was five years old, and I'm 47 now, I still mess up way too often and find myself repenting about something almost on a daily basis, or so it seems.
A few years ago, Jon and I bought a picture with this poem (by Carol Wimmer) that sums it up best:
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I'm not shouting, 'I've been saved!'; I'm whispering, 'I got lost! That's why I chose this way.'
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I don't speak with human pride; I'm confessing that I stumble -- needing God to be my guide.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I'm not trying to be strong; I'm professing that I'm weak and pray for strength to carry on.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I'm not bragging of success; I'm admitting that I've failed and cannot ever pay the debt.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I don't think I know it all; I submit to my confusion, asking humbly to be taught.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I'm not claiming to be perfect; my flaws are far too visible, but God believes I'm worth it.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I still feel the sting of pain; I have my share of heartache, which is why I seek God's name.
"When I say, 'I am a Christian' I do not wish to judge; I have no authority. I only know I'm loved."
Ephesians 5:25 says, "Husbands, love your wives just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her".
Think how many churches show love for Christ on Sunday mornings, then forget about Him by Friday. If your wife forgets to get you another tea in the evening, love her anyway.
Some churches make mistakes, like trying to have big neighborhood parties, but forgetting to bring food, tables, or entertainment. If your wife makes a mistake and washes her cell phone, love her anyway.
Consider how many churches talk about what great things God has done for them when they are together with Christians, and then complain how they can't stay up late Saturday night so the sermon won't put them to sleep in the morning. If your wife says great things about you when she knows you hear her, but complains about you behind your back, love her anyway.
Peter denied he even knew Christ. If your clothes embarrass your wife so much she doesn't admit to being at the comic book convention with you, love her anyway.
[I want to be clear, I'm not talking about my wife.]
And remember that whatever you do, Jesus will still love you. Ask Him forgiveness and repent, and He will forgive anything you do.
1-2 lbs. Hamburger
1 can whole kernel corn
2 cans Ranch-Style beans
2-3 cans Ro-Tel
1 pkg. Dry Ranch dressing mix
2 pkg. Taco seasoning mix
1 can diced green chilies (optionals)
Brown hamburger and onion together; drain. Put all ingredients in a crock-pot. (You can substitute stewed tomatoes for some of the Ro-Tel if you want. Also, I don't add the extra can of green chilies since I use all Ro-Tel tomatoes.) Slow cook. You can cook on high if you are in a hurry, or on low if you are busy and need it to cook slower. To serve: crunch up tortilla chips in bottom of each individual bowl, ladle in soup, top with sour cream and shredded cheese. This is also very good reheated the next day.
Make God your first priority..... not your last resort. - unknown
We love you!
Loretta & Jon