What was I thinking? We’ve all had those moments. Mine happened a few Saturday’s ago. I woke up with the theme song of “Mission Impossible” running through my mind. The voice-over said, “your mission should you choose to accept is to take your little blue shovel and conquer the reality of last night’s storm.”
We’d receive 10 inches of snow with blowing. The drift on the deck was at least waist deep. So I pulled on my overhauls, my heavy winter work coat, my 120 grain gloves, and my newly acquired ultra-warm boots. I grabbed my faithful little blue shovel and went to work against 10 inches of snow, the massively pack snowdrift, and the 10 below wind-chill factor.
The plan was simple I headed out the door, started digging with my trusty little blue shovel, and realized the heavy packed waist high snowdrift was not going to move.
Time to switch to plan B: wade through the waist high snowdrift, reach the snow thrower, start it up, and show the snow who was boss. I was determined that one way or another me and my sturdy little blue snow shovel would win the day. I reached the garage, pulled the cord to start the snow thrower until my shoulder was too sore to pull one more time. I turned around and decided to give it another hack with my previously undefeated little blue snow shovel.
At this point another voice-over started running through my mind. You know the one, yeah that one, the voice of the preacher quoting is most sanctimonious voice, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.” [Philippians 4:13]
How many of us have been told over and over again that “all” means “all.” This idea has even shown up in a new diet book that suggests faith is the key to weight loss. The book starts with a hearty cheerleading session urging the reader to believe that all really does mean all. Especially when it comes to losing weight.
There’s a problem with this. That is not what Paul is saying. In fact if you look at the context Paul is talking about being content in whatever circumstances he finds himself in. If we were to read this from the Common English Bible we would read this, “I can endure all these things through the power of the one who gives me strength.” What? Nothing about me winning the Super Bowl, bummer.
The reality was without the muscle of the mechanical beast known as the snow thrower me and my very sturdy little blue snow shovel stood no chance to complete the mission. No Bible verse could change the reality that my knee, which had just endured a procedure a few days before, could possibly accomplish the mission.
Was the Word of God wrong? No. Just the wishful thinking of the modern church that just might be at the end of its life cycle. Think about it. Who has to take things out of context to fit the meaning of what they want to say? Lawyers, politicians, and liars. Or maybe just an old worn out man, with an old worn out shovel, and a badly worn out knee hoping beyond hope that God would part the snow like He parted the Red Sea.
Prayer: Dear God, never let me preach the foolishness of man as the wisdom of God.