Out of Sync

Daily Post: Synchronize

sync

Being out-of-sync is the bane of good golf, and has spiritual applications for life as well.  Let me show you what I mean.

Out-of-sync in the golf swing usually means your arms and body are swinging independent of one another, or “disconnected.”  This swing fault is the culprit of many foul words, thrown clubs, and lost strokes on the course.  The disconnected out-of-sync swing can be resolved if you’ll do three simple things.

First, learn to hinge your right hand (for right handed golfers) early.  To fix a late, or no-hinge in your right hand, address the ball with the club, then take you right hand of the grip, and put your right hand up under your left armpit and hold it there.  Without your right hand on the grip, it should be easy to hinge the club up.

Second, with your right hand under your left armpit pull back with your right arm and feel your body move to the right and behind the ball.  You’ll have the sensation that your weight moves more onto your right leg, stabilizing your swing.

Third, as you begin the downswing, hold the tension in your left side as you drop the club downwards toward the ball to unwind your hips.  This move allows you to remain tight and connected, the arms and body working together to strike the ball.  This sensation is a synchronized swing which results in crisply hit, powerful golf shots.

Ok, that’s the golf application.  Now what does the Bible have to say about an out-of-sync life, and how to fix it?

Sometimes we are so busy doing “spiritual” things, that we don’t have a clue about how out of sync with God we really are.  Discovering the cause of this disconnectedness with God can often be revealed by examining our spiritual search activities.  Prayer is like the right (dominant) hand in golf.  How we pray can be a real eye opener for us.

Sometimes we mistake defiance for devotion.  We argue with God about something instead of surrendering to God’s will.  Sometimes we just refuse to look and see the results that demonstrate how clearly we are wrong.

In my spiritual search for connection with God today, I discovered these questions posed by Oswald Chambers:

“Have I been asking God to give me money for something I want, while refusing to pay someone what I owe him? Have I been asking God for liberty while I am withholding it from someone who belongs to me? Have I refused to forgive someone, and have I been unkind to that person? Have I been living as God’s child among my relatives and friends?”

How do we fix things, when we are spiritually out-of-sync?

First, don’t just take your right hand off; take both hands off your life and surrender to the Lordship of Jesus.

Second, move back and away from your own earthly agendas and spiritual measuring. With your hands removed from manipulating your life, and your willingness to move back or forward at God’s will, you are poised to be closer to God than ever before.

Third, embrace the tension, trial, or circumstance of the place where you are this minute, and trust the Spirit of God to lead you.  This place is THE place where you may discover just how in-sync you are with the Spirit of God, who always has your BEST in mind.

Acts 17:28
For in Him we live and move and exist.

1 Corinthians 2:9
Just as it is written:
“Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.”

Disastrous Ramifications

Daily Post: Disastrous

Billy bookcase instructions

I know a guy who has never read an instruction manual, not once.  This man figures he can open the box, layout the pieces, and figure out how they go together by looking at the image of the finished product.  He rationalizes this approach as though the item were a jigsaw puzzle as opposed to a bookshelf.  He says jigsaws are much harder by comparison.  All this often concludes with disastrous ramifications.  While reading would be easier, smarter, faster, and safer, none of that really matters.  What matters, to him at least, is that he can’t acknowledge that the engineers at Ikea could have a better way than his for assembling this Billy shelf.  He simply can’t submit to their authority over the correct way to build the shelf.

Some people approach the Bible in the same manner as an Ikea instruction set for building a bookshelf.  They convince themselves they are probably smart enough to figure out life on their own, without any help or instruction from the Creator of life.  They’ve done ok so far, and can’t see any reason for that to change in the future.  So, hey, when they need some help they’ll ask.  Until then don’t confuse them with the instruction manual.

Jesus, whom John calls The Word, does not control people’s lives, as though He were a taskmaster or puppet master.  He’s not demanding you submit to His authority or lordship.  He’s offering you the opportunity to learn the safety and security of that choice.  Jesus offers grace, but we must choose it, in order to be blessed by it.  At one point He said to the disciples, and the crowd nearby, “No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.” [Luke 16:13]  It was a really awesome maxim then, just as it is today.  We choose whom we serve… or what worship.

Jesus never says “You must submit to me.”  In fact just the opposite is true.  The choice is completely yours and mine to make.  We can spit in His face, use His name as the ultimate height of profanity, crucify Him daily by denying His right to be Lord, and He will never speak against it.  However, to believe these actions and attitudes would have no consequence is not a wise choice at all.  Oswald Chambers says, “It is simply the unworthiness within me that refuses to bow down or to submit to one who is worthy.  When I meet someone who is more holy than myself, and I don’t recognize his worthiness, nor obey his instructions for me, it is a sign of my own unworthiness being revealed.”

Refusing to submit to Jesus as Lord has disastrous ramifications.  Failing to acknowledge His grace, given freely at great cost, will not just be disastrous in itself, but will have eternal consequences most people can’t even imagine.  The simple truth that Jesus stated to His disciples then, and now to us today is:

John 13:13
You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.

Say it well with your words and your life today, call out to Him as Teacher and Lord.  Proclaim His glory rather than your own.  If you need help with this, there’s always the instruction manual, where men and women of old gave us images in the proper exclamation of God’s great glory.

Psalm 150:1-6

Praise the LORD! Praise God in His sanctuary; Praise Him in His mighty expanse.
Praise Him for His mighty deeds; Praise Him according to His excellent greatness.
Praise Him with trumpet sound; Praise Him with harp and lyre.
Praise Him with timbrel and dancing;
Praise Him with stringed instruments and pipe.
Praise Him with loud cymbals; Praise Him with resounding cymbals.
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD!

 

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