Focus    on Purpose
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
© Focus On Purpose July 2017 - 2018

Honour and

Drought

“Honor must start in the heart, but if it

ends there, it isn't honor. Honor must be

expressed through words, symbols,

actions, or gestures. Honor is among the

most incarnational of the virtues. It must

have feet and hands.”

Douglas Wilson

Honour in Creation

There are two basic versions of the creation account: Evolution and Creation. Evolution is the story of death. Creation is the story of Life. The story of evolution starts with chance, fate. The story of Creation starts with God. God, the eternal, mysterious One - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; three, yet one. In essence, Love working itself out in honour, cooperation, faithfulness, and unbreakable unity. Love by it's very nature, requires order and stability, and it brings order and stability to whatever it touches. Not a controlling order and stability, but a mutually cooperative order and stability. So in Genesis 1, God, whose essence is Love, comes into a place of formlessness and transforms it into order and stability; a mutually beneficial and cooperative order and stability. He created the planets, moons, suns, and stars that, in ways in which we do not yet fully understand, provide the environment that is exactly right to sustain life on planet earth. Then, after separating the water from dry land, He planted seed-bearing trees and other plants. The leaves of these trees and plants take in the carbon dioxide from the air, use it for its internal processes, and then give off oxygen and hydrogen into the air as by-products of those processes. Some oxygen molecules remain as oxygen, others combine with hydrogen to form water. The condensation of this water is experienced as dew and rain. The trees and plants produce fruits which contain seeds that perpetuate the existence of the plants. Later God created the birds, insects, animals, and man. The birds, insects, animals, and man, breathe in the oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide, completing the cycle which benefits both plants and the creatures of the earth. The creatures of the earth, including man, eat the fruit and leaves of the trees and plants for food, and in the process, disperse the seeds so that new plants may grow, and not have to fight for the same piece of ground as the parent. The by-product of the fruit and leaves that have been eaten, as well as fruit and leaves that are not eaten, but fall to the ground, replenishes the soil, providing food for the plants. This is called symbiosis. It is God's created order, relying on Love and honour. The sea, lakes, dams, and rivers have their own environment, but they too operate according to symbiosis. At the time before the fall, there was no death. Every creature was vegetarian; every creature's life worked towards the sustaining of life in another. This is honour. The law of Love in the Kingdom is equivalent to the law of gravity on earth. Breaking it results in injury or even death. Honour flows from love. Honour and gratitude are symbiotic, but there is an order.  Honour must begin at the Source - honour for God, the originator of all life. But man no longer recognizes nor honours God. He therefore, no longer recognizes God's creation and it's delicate designed order. Instead, we talk of evolution which resulted from random chance circumstances, and miss the designed purpose and order. The result is that as we Iook at our drought here in SA, we look to develop 'water wise' gardening. Of late, what I see as being interpreted as 'water- wise' and 'low maintenance' gardening, is the cutting down of trees, removal of plants, and the laying of paving, stones, or artificial grass, instead of natural grass or natural plant ground cover. There has been a strange trend over the past few years,in which the first thing a new home owner does in his garden, is cut down the trees and shrubs, leaving the barest minimum as a 'garden'. On a greater scale, trees are being cut down and plants removed because they are deemed not indigenous, but indigenous trees and plants are not planted in their place. People move into tracts of land and set up basic forms of dwelling, and in a very short period of time that land is nothing but dead sand. The ensuing change in weather patterns, due to the destruction of trees and other plants, as well as the filth of pollution, is then labelled 'climate change.' If God is brought into the picture at all, it is to shift blame and say the climate change is the result of His judgment, anger, and wrath. We point to end-time prophecy and say climate-change was prophesied. But is climate change the result of prophecy, or was the prophecy speaking of the end result of man's actions? Actions flowing from a refusal to honour God, though He put within each one of us a knowledge of Himself?  (See Romans 1:18-32) The only way we will reverse the destruction is by getting back to the place of honouring God, valuing Him and all He has given, and getting back in step with His created order. But man rages - and is that rage not so clearly evident in this country? God's laws are not there to restrict and control us. They are there to keep us in the bounds of His greater creative order, so that we can benefit from a well-designed system that was put in place to sustain life. The Story of Dishonour In Romans 1, Paul tells us that though man knows who God is, because He has made it evident within us and around us, we as humanity, do not honour Him as God and we are not thankful. According to Paul's writing in Romans 1: 18-32, this begins to bend the frames of our glasses, leading to the blurring of our vision, so that we veer off on a path of destruction. This is the story of Cain. This is also the story of every one of us. This is the basis of sin. It is the subtlety of familiarity leading to a taking for granted. Subtly self moves into centre stage with all others, including God, becoming resources to accomplish our desires. But because of our blurred vision, we cannot see the deathly trap set in this path. It is the trap of intensifying desire, the fulfilment of which only leads to a greater hunger. We are taught by psychologists, motivational speakers, self-help materials, and coaches, that gratitude is the secret to fulfilment and satisfaction, but to whom are you grateful? Have you not achieved as a result of your own efforts to please the gods who gave you favour? Was it not your efforts to focus your mind to vibrate in synch with the universe? Was it not just your own hard work over many hours, that made you a 'self-made' success ? But how can you be grateful to yourself for achieving something that actually does not provide what you are looking for? You have not actually been successful in satisfying the deep cry of your heart, have you? So what are you grateful for? Some 'things' you have gathered along the way? And what have they brought you? God tells Cain that his countenance would be lifted when he did what was right. In other words, if he did what he knew was right, he would be that elusive thing we call 'happy'. The source of 'doing what is right' is honouring the One whose signature you bear; the One whose image you carry. It flows from the place of valuing and respecting the One who formed you and gave you life, the One who knew you and loved you from before the foundation of the world. Honouring God, means we will value and respect those around us, because everyone - everyone - carries a unique image of God within them. It all starts with honour. When you honour God, you will be thankful. Thankfulness and honour go hand-in-hand; you will be thankful to the one you honour. But if you do not honour God, then just starting with thankfulness will take you further down the road of destruction because you will be giving your thanks to anyone or anything other than God, thus dishonouring God even more by disregarding Him as your source. Building on a faulty foundation will cause the walls to crack and crumble. You have to start with God to get the order right. What Does it Mean to Honour? The Greek word translated as 'honour' in Romans 1: 20 (or 'glorify' in some translations), speaks of valuing God. If you don't value God, you won't be thankful to Him, nor will you obey Him. And being thankful to others is not going make you value God when you don't start from the place of valuing Him above all. According to Romans 1, when we start on the road of not valuing God, He allows us to experience the consequences of our actions. Isn't it bizarre how we then blame God when we experience the outworking of our dishonour towards Him? God does not need our honour or attention, but honour is a life-enhancing atmosphere within the Godhead and within God's Kingdom. Honour is essential to healthy living because it is love focusing outward. Let us intentionally foster a culture of honour as we purposefully search for the unique image of God in the person in front of us. Sometimes we are going to need the Holy Spirit’s help, because that image may be buried very deep beneath layers of infected wounding, or even arrogant pride. But it is there, for every one of us is created in God's image. Let us search to find it and honour God by speaking life into that aspect of His image. This is like water on a parched tongue, or even spiritual mouth- to-mouth resuscitation, restoring life to that which has died. Let us intentionally link in to God's life-giving creative order of symbiosis, by returning to the place of honouring Him as God, living a life of gratitude for all He is, and all He has done, and honouring His imprint in every created thing, and every person, we encounter.
Prev Next
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
© Focus On Purpose July 2017 - 2018  

Honour and

Drought

“Honor must start in the heart, but if

it ends there, it isn't honor. Honor

must be expressed through words,

symbols, actions, or gestures. Honor

is among the most incarnational of

the virtues. It must have feet and

hands.”

Douglas Wilson

Honour in Creation

There are two basic versions of the creation account: Evolution and Creation. Evolution is the story of death. Creation is the story of Life. The story of evolution starts with chance, fate. The story of Creation starts with God. God, the eternal, mysterious One - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; three, yet one. In essence, Love working itself out in honour, cooperation, faithfulness, and unbreakable unity. Love by it's very nature, requires order and stability, and it brings order and stability to whatever it touches. Not a controlling order and stability, but a mutually cooperative order and stability. So in Genesis 1, God, whose essence is Love, comes into a place of formlessness and transforms it into order and stability; a mutually beneficial and cooperative order and stability. He created the planets, moons, suns, and stars that, in ways in which we do not yet fully understand, provide the environment that is exactly right to sustain life on planet earth. Then, after separating the water from dry land, He planted seed-bearing trees and other plants. The leaves of these trees and plants take in the carbon dioxide from the air, use it for its internal processes, and then give off oxygen and hydrogen into the air as by-products of those processes. Some oxygen molecules remain as oxygen, others combine with hydrogen to form water. The condensation of this water is experienced as dew and rain. The trees and plants produce fruits which contain seeds that perpetuate the existence of the plants. Later God created the birds, insects, animals, and man. The birds, insects, animals, and man, breathe in the oxygen and breathe out carbon dioxide, completing the cycle which benefits both plants and the creatures of the earth. The creatures of the earth, including man, eat the fruit and leaves of the trees and plants for food, and in the process, disperse the seeds so that new plants may grow, and not have to fight for the same piece of ground as the parent. The by-product of the fruit and leaves that have been eaten, as well as fruit and leaves that are not eaten, but fall to the ground, replenishes the soil, providing food for the plants. This is called symbiosis. It is God's created order, relying on Love and honour. The sea, lakes, dams, and rivers have their own environment, but they too operate according to symbiosis. At the time before the fall, there was no death. Every creature was vegetarian; every creature's life worked towards the sustaining of life in another. This is honour. The law of Love in the Kingdom is equivalent to the law of gravity on earth. Breaking it results in injury or even death. Honour flows from love. Honour and gratitude are symbiotic, but there is an order.  Honour must begin at the Source - honour for God, the originator of all life. But man no longer recognizes nor honours God. He therefore, no longer recognizes God's creation and it's delicate designed order. Instead, we talk of evolution which resulted from random chance circumstances, and miss the designed purpose and order. The result is that as we Iook at our drought here in SA, we look to develop 'water wise' gardening. Of late, what I see as being interpreted as 'water-wise' and 'low maintenance' gardening, is the cutting down of trees, removal of plants, and the laying of paving, stones, or artificial grass, instead of natural grass or natural plant ground cover. There has been a strange trend over the past few years,in which the first thing a new home owner does in his garden, is cut down the trees and shrubs, leaving the barest minimum as a 'garden'. On a greater scale, trees are being cut down and plants removed because they are deemed not indigenous, but indigenous trees and plants are not planted in their place. People move into tracts of land and set up basic forms of dwelling, and in a very short period of time that land is nothing but dead sand. The ensuing change in weather patterns, due to the destruction of trees and other plants, as well as the filth of pollution, is then labelled 'climate change.' If God is brought into the picture at all, it is to shift blame and say the climate change is the result of His judgment, anger, and wrath. We point to end- time prophecy and say climate-change was prophesied. But is climate change the result of prophecy, or was the prophecy speaking of the end result of man's actions? Actions flowing from a refusal to honour God, though He put within each one of us a knowledge of Himself?  (See Romans 1:18-32) The only way we will reverse the destruction is by getting back to the place of honouring God, valuing Him and all He has given, and getting back in step with His created order. But man rages - and is that rage not so clearly evident in this country? God's laws are not there to restrict and control us. They are there to keep us in the bounds of His greater creative order, so that we can benefit from a well-designed system that was put in place to sustain life. The Story of Dishonour In Romans 1, Paul tells us that though man knows who God is, because He has made it evident within us and around us, we as humanity, do not honour Him as God and we are not thankful. According to Paul's writing in Romans 1: 18-32, this begins to bend the frames of our glasses, leading to the blurring of our vision, so that we veer off on a path of destruction. This is the story of Cain. This is also the story of every one of us. This is the basis of sin. It is the subtlety of familiarity leading to a taking for granted. Subtly self moves into centre stage with all others, including God, becoming resources to accomplish our desires. But because of our blurred vision, we cannot see the deathly trap set in this path. It is the trap of intensifying desire, the fulfilment of which only leads to a greater hunger. We are taught by psychologists, motivational speakers, self-help materials, and coaches, that gratitude is the secret to fulfilment and satisfaction, but to whom are you grateful? Have you not achieved as a result of your own efforts to please the gods who gave you favour? Was it not your efforts to focus your mind to vibrate in synch with the universe? Was it not just your own hard work over many hours, that made you a 'self- made' success ? But how can you be grateful to yourself for achieving something that actually does not provide what you are looking for? You have not actually been successful in satisfying the deep cry of your heart, have you? So what are you grateful for? Some 'things' you have gathered along the way? And what have they brought you? God tells Cain that his countenance would be lifted when he did what was right. In other words, if he did what he knew was right, he would be that elusive thing we call 'happy'. The source of 'doing what is right' is honouring the One whose signature you bear; the One whose image you carry. It flows from the place of valuing and respecting the One who formed you and gave you life, the One who knew you and loved you from before the foundation of the world. Honouring God, means we will value and respect those around us, because everyone - everyone - carries a unique image of God within them. It all starts with honour. When you honour God, you will be thankful. Thankfulness and honour go hand- in-hand; you will be thankful to the one you honour. But if you do not honour God, then just starting with thankfulness will take you further down the road of destruction because you will be giving your thanks to anyone or anything other than God, thus dishonouring God even more by disregarding Him as your source. Building on a faulty foundation will cause the walls to crack and crumble. You have to start with God to get the order right. What Does it Mean to Honour? The Greek word translated as 'honour' in Romans 1: 20 (or 'glorify' in some translations), speaks of valuing God. If you don't value God, you won't be thankful to Him, nor will you obey Him. And being thankful to others is not going make you value God when you don't start from the place of valuing Him above all. According to Romans 1, when we start on the road of not valuing God, He allows us to experience the consequences of our actions. Isn't it bizarre how we then blame God when we experience the outworking of our dishonour towards Him? God does not need our honour or attention, but honour is a life-enhancing atmosphere within the Godhead and within God's Kingdom. Honour is essential to healthy living because it is love focusing outward. Let us intentionally foster a culture of honour as we purposefully search for the unique image of God in the person in front of us. Sometimes we are going to need the Holy Spirit’s help, because that image may be buried very deep beneath layers of infected wounding, or even arrogant pride. But it is there, for every one of us is created in God's image. Let us search to find it and honour God by speaking life into that aspect of His image. This is like water on a parched tongue, or even spiritual mouth-to- mouth resuscitation, restoring life to that which has died. Let us intentionally link in to God's life-giving creative order of symbiosis, by returning to the place of honouring Him as God, living a life of gratitude for all He is, and all He has done, and honouring His imprint in every created thing, and every person, we encounter.
Focus    on Purpose
Focus    on Purpose
If I have faith to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing
Prev Next