Take Your Shape!

I’m kinda wishing I would have gotten it before.

Every year when it finally gets warm outside (if we’ve connected on Twitter or Facebook, you know this has been a thorn in my side), I inflate the younger kids’ pool.

I take it out of the box, unfold it, and hook up the electric compressor.

It starts out flat, wrinkled, and out of shape. Once I hook up the compressor and turn it on, it starts inflating and metamorphosis begins.

Ok so maybe it’s not that dramatic, but in a few minutes the air takes it from flat, useless piece of plastic to a beautiful, fully inflated pool that’s ready to be filled with refreshing water that will be the source of little laughs, screams, and phrases like “It’s so cold!”

When the person of the Holy Spirit fills us, it takes us from a shapeless, purposeless human to a formed, called, and destined son or daughter through Jesus Christ. It’s that big of a truth.

No Holy Spirit, no shape.

Yes Holy Spirit, you experience what you were created for. Your Purpose.

Sometimes during the summer, the pool will need to be topped off with some extra air. Just to keep it solid.

Sometimes I think we need that too.

I know it’s not perfect theology, but the bottom line is this: we need the Holy Spirit to gives us shape, direction, and destiny.

Remember the disciples experience at Pentecost when the Holy Spirit came and Jesus called Him the Great Comforter? The disciples got a new shape, new affirmation, new purpose.

Don’t you think it’s better to ask the Holy Spirit what shape He wants you rather than to live like a flat empty piece of plastic in a box?

When’s the last time God used something ordinary like a blow up pool to teach you about Himself?

Independence Day

photo credit: sunsurfr via photo pin cc

I can’t believe it’s July already. I love summer in Minnesota, and July marks the middle of the warm weather to me. It’s baseball, fishing, swimming, camps, MLB All Star break, really green golf courses, fireworks, and, of course, Independence Day.

July 4th carries so many memories for me. Growing up on the farm near Hitterdal, MN, we would spend the day mowing the lawn, hand washing all the vehicles, blowing things up with fireworks, and then we would travel to Detroit Lakes, MN, for a picnic, swimming, watching fireworks with the family on the beach, and then falling asleep in the back of station wagon as Dad drove us back to the farm.

I loved those times. My dad and mom did so much to make it fun and yet didn’t say yes to everything we wanted. They would try to be economical and pack as much food and drink so we wouldn’t buy anything we didn’t need. They provided all the blankets, sunscreen, sand castle making equipment, water, coffee thermos (for Dad), mosquito spray, and sweatshirts for the evening show. We were free to enjoy the day with no needs to be worried about. Freedom feels good.

That’s what Independence Day is about right?  It’s about the Founding Father’s declaring they no longer subject themselves to the tyranny of the King and England itself. Even after the declaring independence, the cost to achieve that freedom would not be measurable until it was attained. The cost of human lives sacrificed on the battlefield was not projectable. The attitude was “whatever it takes to get it done.”

It got done, and this freedom has been challenged, defended, protected, and preserved with many more lives “no matter what it takes.”  Freedom is just that important and worth it.

It’s a freedom that doesn’t allow us to do whatever we want but a freedom that says we can pursue life, liberty, and happiness.

Look, my friends, I want to point you in a direction to remember the most important freedom you have. That’s the freedom from the bondage of sin that God gave us through the death AND resurrection of His Son Jesus. That Independence Day is eternal. It’s not just heaven and eternal life but it’s also freedom to pursue the Father God’s love, presence, will, grace, and not have to be afraid. No worries. It’s all been provided for you to approach your Abba Father God.

In John 14:6 Jesus said “I am the Way, the Truth, the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  Jesus took care of all your needs so you can have the freedom and independence to come into the presence of God and have no fear. The cost and sacrifice was great. In Jesus, your freedom from death has been challenged, defended, protected, and preserved. He did whatever it would take because you are worth it to Him.

No more tyranny of sin and condemnation.

Thank Jesus even as you read this for your freedom and celebrate Him. Sing. Dance. Fireworks.

God is good all the time!