A reflection can be an image we see of an object, or it can be a means of thinking, of looking back on events and seeing them again, either in joyful remembrance, or in disappointment and shame. This collection of stories, parables, and illustrations, does both. To see Christ and His great love reflected in our lives is the call given to all His followers. Regrettably, often our reflections center not on Christ but on our rebellion, the times we were lost in the wilderness of life, running from the scars of our past. In this book, see that glorious redemption, and how Jesus shows us His scars in order to move us past ours. The author uses the humor gleaned from a life lived in the wilderness, to remind us that no desert is too vast, that Jesus cannot find you. He knows you by name, and He has a plan for your life.
|Reflection||Swing Set Speedway (Scars I)|
|For Whom the Rooster Crows (Scars II)||Momma’s Solution (Scars III)|
|It’s All in the Landing (Scars IV)||Upstream|
|Poppin’ Stumps||All In|
|What if…Merrily, Merrily||An Intersection in the Wilderness (Part 1)|
|Shovels in the Wilderness (Part 2)||Cut it All|
|Ode to a Tree (Even a Tree Can Be Scarred)||Too Much Manna in the Yogi|
|Morale Will Drop When the Dr. Pepper Runs Out||Trams|
We were burning piles on a property one summer day. It was already 90 degrees without the heat from the fire, so the heat between the rows was brutal. For this reason, I hired some young college kids to help. Good experience, it would help them decide if they really wanted to go into forestry. I had brought a cooler full of ice, full of water, and various sodas.
As these young fellows came out of the flames for a break, one of the burners dug through the cooler to extract an ice-cold Dr. Pepper, his personal favorite. As he finished off the can, he declared the following bit of wisdom:
“Morale will drop when the Dr. Pepper runs out!”
Having spent many a day in the smoke, there are definitely times when you begin to fixate on relief, on finding a place out of the heat, a place where you can have a cold refreshing drink. In life, sometimes we are required to go into the heat. It isn’t pleasant; it isn’t something we signed up for even. Maybe it is a series of treatments, or a legal procedure. Perhaps it is a move from one part of the country to another. What we know without doubt, is that it is uncomfortable and draining. Before long, our enthusiasm is gone, and we are bearing down with gritted teeth. Our eyes burn with fatigue and sleeplessness. We stumble towards the cooler, looking for refreshment, for something to boost our morale, because we know we are not out of the fire yet.
If we ignore Jesus, then we are left with platitudes―empty words, clever sayings, no promise, no strength, no encouragement.
“Keep up the good work!”
“Tomorrow will be a better day!”
“That shirt/dress looks so good on you…when you aren’t hunched over.”
“O dear, you have such pretty eyes…even when they are bloodshot.”
Yes, if we ignore the words of Jesus, we ignore the very source of love and encouragement that he has offered us to survive in the heat and misery of this world we find ourselves in. We ignore his words of hope and promise, and then wonder why our morale crashes, and each day brings more despair. Perhaps we need to dig a little deeper in the cooler.
For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5b
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