Skip to main content

Settle that Storm!

Brainstorming:  A technique for solving problems, amassing information, stimulating creative thinking, or developing new ideas, by unrestrained and spontaneous participation in discussion.  If you have ever been part of a "brainstorming" session in a large group, you know you can generate a whole bunch of ideas in a short period of time using this technique.  Yet, I find we don't always get the best from the most - we often get the best when we are able to filter it down to the least.  For example, when we have to choose between cookies on a platter, there may be ten different varieties.  The one "creating" the platter wanted to have a "selection" of all possible choices.  The one eating the cookies may have one thing in mind - satisfy my craving for chocolate and peanut butter!  The cookie-eater zeros in on exactly what will fulfill - not all the other sweets on the platter!

We humans keep brainstorming options and plans, but God’s purpose prevails. (Proverbs 19:21 MSG)

This proverb really tells us a great deal about how we humans interact with God and others.  First, we have all kinds of options and formulate all manner of plans.  It is like we have this continual "brainstorming" session going on in our mind!  We throw up ideas, often without much calculation, and see if any of them "sound okay" for us to be pursuing.  The danger comes in us "throwing up" so many ideas!  Have you ever had too many options?  What the brainstorming does is leave us in a mess - chaotic thought produces chaotic behavior.  By the very definition of the word "brainstorm" we see two things - the center of thought and the chaos it brings!  Our brain is the center of thought - as such, it is the place of understanding.  Now, add too much thought into the picture and you get the idea of a "storm" effect - you really don't know where the next thought will come from or what it will reveal!

Options and plans - doesn't this really reveal the idea of liking to have all our options available totally in a row before we start a thing?  We are constantly working out the "if-then" scenarios.  If this happens, then I will go this direction; if that happens, then this is the course I will pursue.  The danger in all this is the possibility of not getting God's direction before we make the choices which will set things in motion in our lives.

My brain shuts down after a while - I think it is kind of like a "preserving" factor.  When I get on "overload" because of too much "brain-storm" activity, I shut down!  Oh, I don't drift into some catatonic state, but I do withdraw, find a place to center myself, and just spend some time getting things settled again.  When too much chaos abounds, I just cannot function well.  If my friends have observed me for a while, they see the more demands made of me, the quieter I become.  Why?  My brain is on "overload" and I just need to get focused again!  

In examining our proverb this morning, let's not forget what Solomon says - the brainstorming and planning is okay, but there is a bigger purpose behind every choice!  God prevails!  He is the "force" which settles the storm - he doesn't contribute to it!  If you have ever been in the midst of a "brain-storm" of massive proportion, you might not recognize the source of the storm, but it is clearly NOT God.  His actions are those of peace, order, and pre-eminence.  There is but one purpose - to keep God first in our lives.  The "storm" settles when we get this right.  

I don't know about you, but as this Christmas is upon us, I want to take a few moments to "settle the storm" and to just focus on the one who makes this entire season of celebration a reality - Jesus!  We can get so caught up in all the plans and preparations so as to miss the meaning of it all.  Take some time today, center yourself again, allow the winds to die down in that brain of yours.  This is our chance to connect with him - his presence can prevail - but we need to give him access!  The best of our plans and the wisest of our schemes just pales in comparison to getting close to him!  Just sayin!  Merry Christmas all!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce …

Period!

When someone tells you that you need to wrap your mind around some concept, they are telling you that the subject at hand will take some effort on our part to actually get enough of a hint of it in order to even remotely understand it. The subject is complex, even a little overwhelming, and we will have to apply ourselves to really grasp it very well. We cannot wrap our minds around God's wisdom and knowledge - because it is infinite and our brains are sadly finite. We can only 'think' so far and then we have to 'trust'. Some of us think there is nothing we can trust if we cannot 'think' it through, but this will never work when it comes to our faith. Faith requires trust in what is unseen and not fully comprehended. The truth we believe is really building our trust, but until we approach God with more trust than 'thought', we will never fully grasp some of the things he has prepared for us.

We cannot wrap our minds around God’s wisdom and knowledge…

Give him the pieces

What or Who is it that causes division among you right now? Maybe it is more of a 'what' than a 'who' that is creating the division between you and something you need in your life. Perhaps you are struggling with an addiction to something that keeps coming between you and true liberty from the hold that thing has on you. Yes, addiction is really the worst kind of enslavement one can imagine - being so emotionally or psychologically attached to the 'thing' that any attempt to break free causes so much trauma in your life that you just cannot imagine being free. But...God is above that addiction - he is stronger than the emotional or psychological pull that thing has in your life. Maybe the dividing force in your life right now is a 'who' - a tough relationship challenge between you and a coworker, a spouse that seems to no longer share your interests or values, or even a relative that doesn't understand some of your choices and now chooses to withdra…