Friday, October 14, 2016

Blessings in the Cereal Aisle

You wouldn't expect to be in awe of the cereal aisle, would you? I guess that depends on your perspective.

My first few years at NASA, I occasionally worked with Russian cosmonauts who came to train in Houston. Many of them brought their spouses with them.  

I'll never forget the day I went to a grocery store with one of the cosmonaut's wives. She was wide-eyed as we walked around the store.  

Accustomed to an open market where she bargained for meat hanging in open stalls, she marveled at the already cut-and-packaged chicken, beef, and pork. She couldn't believe the selection.

The canned vegetables, the seasonings - many she'd never heard of - and the mound of toilet paper amazed her.

But what captivated her the most was the cereal aisle. She walked along it, her face glowed like she'd just found a pearl of great price. Shredded Wheat to Lucky Charms, Bran Flakes to Cocoa Puffs - she was in a breakfast wonderland.

To me, it was just a meat counter, just a vegetable aisle, just a row of cereal. 

How often is it just salvation, just His grace, just His presence?

When did I last 

  • Gaze wide-eyed at His majesty 
  • Marvel at His love
  • Stand amazed at His provision
  • Worship, captivated by His love

When did I last worship the Pearl of Great Price, Jesus, with total abandon? 

Do I remember the awe I felt when I first met Him and realized the grace and mercy He freely offered me?

Do I take Him for granted?

Lord, please give me that lady's perspective when I consider the riches I have in You!

Blessed? Please share!

Friday, October 7, 2016

Start at the Wall!

I am the vine; you are the branches. ...Apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5

Some things are so obvious, they should be automatic. Like this one: When a piece of equipment won't turn on, start at the wall.

One of the experiments my team worked on required three pieces of equipment. We built the first rough prototypes and, after we got each piece running OK, we scheduled the first test of the whole system. 

We set the whole thing up - all the cables it looked like a pile of yarn the cat tore up. kind of like behind your TV or computer. 

Remember, there are three engineers standing around the rack; that's important to the story.

One of us turned on the power strip and two pieces hummed to life. A green power light and lots of flashing lights. One unit just sat there, mocking us quietly. 

We scrambled into action. We moved the rack away from the wall and checked all the cables that connected the system; everything looked good. We checked the wiring in the misbehaving piece, A-OK.

Unfortunately, none of us looked down to the power strip. Finally, a team member glanced down and saw the problem: the silent unit wasn't plugged in. We all laughed in embarrassment and plugged it in - Wallah! It worked!

It's a proven fact: a machine won't work without a power source.

How many of us struggle through hard times or with difficult decisions without tapping into our power source?

We look at our circumstances and feel powerless and overwhelmed. We look so together but know one knows we're a wreck inside. 

When we face hard decisions, we balance all the pros and cons but uncertainty lurks inside. 

Are we plugged into our power Source? 

Only Jesus can provide the wisdom we need. Only Jesus can strengthen and empower us to stay upright in the hard days.

How do we plug in?

  • God'sWord
  • Prayer
  • Our dear Christian friends
  • Praise and worship

When we feel weak and overcome by life, start at the Wall. If our connections to the Vine are strong, we can hum to life through trials and challenging decisions. 

Check your power cord and plug it in!

If you are blessed, Please share