I painted this twilight scene of Mackinaw Bridge based on our trip in early September. One evening we parked near the bridge in time to see the lights come on at twilight. I chose it for today’s thought—‘Resources’. It takes many resources to keep the 70+ year-old “Mighty Mac” safe and fully operational. Paint crews, metal inspectors, electricians, snow crews, designated drivers and much more. It takes lots of resources to maintain it’s goal—safe, reliable transportation across the Straits of Mackinaw. Perhaps the greatest resource is the one who coordinates or coaches all these resources toward that goal.
For two weeks we’ve considered ‘Thinking’ by first defining it: the mental activity of rummaging that recalls, organizes and arranges, and suggested two questions: (1.) What helpful resources are available? And, (2.) What have you learned from these resources that help toward the goal—‘To follow Jesus’?
Then, last week, we applied a critical thinking practice suggested by Brian Oshiro’s Ted Talk (Ted x Xiquan) last February in Guangzhou, China. Brian raised awareness of the importance of the questions we ask. He organized questions into three levels. Using a third level question requires synthesizing known information, and is an example of questions that require critical thinking toward goal attainment.
What’s the ‘take away’ from this review?
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a coach to guide us toward our goal? Have someone helping us to formulate and answer questions, moving us forward? Well, we actually have that coach!
Whatever path led you to the desire to be a follower of Jesus, at that moment, the Spirit of Jesus was supernaturally actuated into your life for the expressed purpose of, not only identifying or sealing you as a spiritual child of God, but also to be coach in your life journey.
Last week you may have selected Paul as one example from the New Testament of someone who was a follower of Jesus. Hear what Paul said: “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”–1 Corinthians 11:1. So, what is the ‘example of Christ’ Paul followed?
Jesus answered in John’s Gospel 5:19b, 20. “I tell you the truth, the Son [Jesus] can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does.”
Neither can we follow Jesus by ourselves. We need a coach to guide us into use of the available resources. The Spirit of Jesus, in us, has been given to us for that purpose. Jesus said…
“All this I have spoken while still with you, but the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you”. John 14:25,26
You are indwelt by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is now your guide in carrying out this assignment Jesus expressed in John 15:9, 12. “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love. …My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
A primary resource of the Spirit is the Old and New Testament. Through these the Sprit will train us into the life of a Jesus follower, demonstrating Jesus’ character—learning to love as God loves. It becomes a natural way of living and becomes evident to our sphere of influence.
Paul defines it as a fruit metaphor in his letter to the Galatian followers of Jesus (and us!) “…the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22,23a
A Place to Start
- Meet with your Coach every day. Set an amount of time that works for you. Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God…”
- Take into your meeting your Bible, pad of paper and pen. I suggest start by slowly reading through Colossians…many times. It may take weeks.
- Write down whatever you think may be applicable in your life each day.
- Through your day, ask God to help you see where what you wrote can be applied. Journal what happened or didn’t! Repeat tomorrow.
Review Psalm 1:1-3 and Philippians 4:8-9.