When i get there….


The day i get to the pearly gates, will St, Peter really be sitting there with his clipboard in his hand? Checking my name against his clipboard, seeing if i have been naughty of nice? Did i really believe? Did i do more good than bad, what kind of attitude did i have when i did good? Then when he smiles at me and punches my ticket and says, go on in your room is waiting? And by room, hopefully he means a small cabin on the lake, secluded from others. Will i still be introverted in heaven? will i still have friends? will it be an everyday flow of constant worship? will i know others? Will Jesus and i have time chat about the whys and what nots? Will I get a big hug, and will there be dancing in the streets, a party, and will there be people there that will be shocked that i made it in? Will I get to see God’s throne, and will there be elders and disciples sitting on both sides? Who will be at God’s right hand and who will be at his left? Will i be in awe? Will anything i did on earth really matter? Will my scars be gone? Will my fears and doubts melt away in his presence? Will i hear well done good and faithful servant?

In the lord’s prayer, one line is”on earth as it is in heaven”. I feel like that there is so much that i am missing. Am i on track, am i veering to the left or to the right? Am i running a good race, am i fighting a good fight? Only God can answer these questions. On fear is that i won’t make the final cut. You were so close, but remember that time you were mad and swore, or you didn’t quite love your neighbor enough, you complained about their garbage too much. You worried too much and you lived in fear that the ax may fall. You worried about what others may think so you hid your talents away in a bushel basket. You were to busy playing video games instead of getting your oil for your lamp. You sought a prophecy instead of seeking me, you got a tattoo and now you are marked. You didn’t believe in grace and so on. You thought to much and tried to hard out of your own effort. You didn’t trust me and you always had a plan b. You didn’t love enough.

Hey i’m down here trying, doing the best i can with what i got. I may not be perfect, and i probably have more faults than i can imagine, i fall into temptation, and seek forgiveness, sure i can beat myself up better than most, i am my worst critic and at times my worst enemy,. I really don’t deserve anything. I went to church, i tithed, i taught Sunday school, i had a home prayer group. I gave ten bucks to some homeless guy standing along the side of the road with a sign asking for money. I gave away clothes to a shelter. I read the shack, i even crack open my bible once in awhile, surely you must have heard my prayers when i asked for help. hey, i am trying down here…….

Yet when it comes down to it, i have tried to love, i have tried to forgive and i have tried to have hope. i have fought with hatred and lost, i have forgiven but not forgotten and picked it back up and hated again.  I have tried to be good and failed. i give up. i am a wretched man who gets up every morning and puts his pants on and tries to get through another day. I am just tired. i have become fed up with the way some things are in this world and it is very draining. it’s like you have to chose sides and one side is just as crappy as the other. I just want to be happy, enjoy what i have left. Your mission if you decide to accept it is too be happy. What will really get me in, and i am in already, is that i have loved God, and loved Jesus and believed that the only way in is through Jesus Christ our lord. It may not have always looked pretty from my end, but in God’s eyes, i have loved Him and never stopped. I may have question, but trusted. I am in…….There will be dancing in the streets, it should be that way now, on earth as it is in heaven,,,,,so come on and dance

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QUESTIONS….


“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”…Romans 8…i am still trying to figure out my purpose and i have only come up with 3 conclusions,,,,to love God, love others and contribute laughter to this world. Well and maybe drink coffee. I am not always good at loving God, but what is the scale? Some days i pray, some days i read, and some days I think about Him. Most times i think i am just crying out for help, or God do this for me, or God do that, Like He is sitting on some marble bench waving a magic wand. I think to myself what kind of a relationship is this? It seems like some things that i pray for do not even happen. My favorite two prayers are, Lord help through this day, and help me get a goodnight sleep. The world is full of people that i think are intentionally trying  to ruin your day and half the time they don’t even know that they are, they are just so focused on their own needs that they don’t care about who they step on to get what they want.  My sleep usually comes under attack and i am woken up by some trivial nightmare about something i did wrong at work that isn’t even true, or i just have to go to the bathroom. I have to fight off the lie and try to get back to sleep.  I am thankful when i can get a good night’s sleep. You cannot put a price on a good night’s sleep.

As far as loving others goes, ,,,Well at times i fail miserably, it is hard to love others when you don’t see something to love in them. I don’t know how God does it, a couple of billion people on this earth and He loves them all. I even have a hard time loving myself. What about me is so lovable? I can be an ass, a jerk, a bonehead, a selfish person who wants their own way. I get tired of people and have to hid in a cave. Yet there are some people who see past the faults and have seen hearts shining with love as bright as the sun. Maybe they see Jesus in me? It is hard to see it in others, but i like those who make it easy. I just keep trying to let it out of me, but after you have been tramples on, you put up barriers or boundaries. You have to guard your heart, be careful what and who you let in. this old heart of mine has been hurt before by people who i thought i could trust. I can be gun shy. Being introverted you become a little more gun shy. I watch how people are, i am not blind.

As far as the last part goes, i was voted class clown when i was in high school, i was first insulted when i was younger, now i think of it as an honor. Making people laugh is a gift. It comes naturally, and i also think of it as a weapon, it should be listed under that spiritual gift list, because not everyone is funny. There is nothing like a good heart felt belly laugh. It can cure a lot of ailments, it can heal hearts and mend relationships. I don’t know why it is but fart humor is funny. Who would imagine? I had beans tonight and that might create some humor later on in life. I am sure God has a sense of humor,he is probably laughing at some of the things that i do. My angels are probably pleading with God hoping that i would get it right some day. So am i predestined am i called, or justified, I would like to think so, i have days i wonder why God would love a guy like me, or i wonder why i have to go through so much crap in life. Then there are times when i look back at that crap and realize that God was with me all the time. I may not understand, but i do trust.  If you want to help, then help.

 

What it’s like on the other side of the phone and or desk.


Thanks for calling lincare, this is Joe, how can i help you?  This is usually how I answer the phone at work. In an even tone and willing to help. On the other end of the phone are people who call me a dummy, an idiot, and even a f******g idiot. One even went and called a f****** ************. to explicit  for this blog. All because i could not take care of their problem, or order their parts or give them the supplies that they need. If i am not getting paid, you cannot receive what you need. So times this by about ten times a day, for a week. Four times in the first half an hour at work. Everyone wants what they think they are entitled to regardless who gets hurt. What’s worse yet is that some of these people claim to be Christians. This is what it is like to be on the front line, you never know what is on the other side of the phone when you answer it, or who is going to walk in the front door. Some come in with guns a blazing and shoot off their mouth’s and attitudes without a second thought. They don’t realize that the last three other people did the same thing.  I just got done with a beating and you are bringing another? what the hells wrong with you, can’t you see i am already wounded? Can’t you see that i am tired of taking offense? The barrage is relentless, i could go home and cry. No wonder i have high blood pressure and a weak heart.

I am a sensitive guy, i do not take it very well and i take it very personally, why would you do this to me? Just over medical supplies you are going to rip me a new one because i follow the rules and you don’t. Why is you poor planning all of a sudden my problem? I used to think i could take it, but i am not so sure anymore. I feel like i am in constant need of encouragement or uplifting, i don’t sleep well at night and it grieves me when i can’t help someone. I like to help, but if i can’t there is no reason to rip my head off and cram it down my throat. Some days i feel like a little of me dies inside. like it’s my fault and i want to go and hide in a cave. People make me sick at times and if i don’t have anything to do with them for days i can recharge. I ran into some people i went to church with a couple of weeks ago and they didn’t have the time of day for me. What do you do?

On the flip side tho, there are those who appreciate every little thing that you do for them. they thank you and are glad when you do help. When one third of the angels fell i think they all needed some medical stuff and were sent to my office, vomiting their b***s *** all over me. they probably do not even realize that they are doing it but sure cry wolf when someone does it to them. On the flip side tho, those people show me how not to treat others, they show me my need for God everyday. I would pray for them, but at times i can’t. it is hard to pray for your enemies, if that’s what they are. Do we through pearls to the swine? Do we shake the dust off our feet and move on? Does everyone who says yes yes Lord Lord really make it in? What about the wailing  gnashing of teeth? Are there really bad people out there that want to ruin your day for their own selfish pleasure. Are there still some of those old testament spirits hanging around to ruin your day? I am not saying that i am some sort of saint, i have had my share of rough road and made quite a few bad choices, i may have planks in my eye,. I will have to answer to God for my choices.  Please don’t make it harder for me by your actions toward me, you just may not hear what you want to hear when i tell you where to go. I do not extend grace to only have it trampled on over and over, eventually that favor will go out the window.

Tomorrow is a new day and i do not have to go to work for the next five, God is gracious and compassionate and i am not always, but i am learning. I will let my heart heal, my soul rest and i will take all the encouragement i can get. SKOL…….

YAKKITY YAK YAKKITY YAK


The older i get the more i realize i like meaningful conversations. I am tired of small talk and hearing unimportant trivialities from someone’s life. How their weekend went, or what they did, or who they saw, what they spent their money on. I can turn off a radio or the television. Don’t get me wrong, i like people and i care, but i am not interested in what you do with your time. If you did something deep and meaningful, then maybe. Well maybe i don’t care. Have we lost the art of stimulating conversation? Even social media gives me anxiety. I don’t always know what to say, and worry about what i do say. heck, i even get anxiety when there are more than three people in the same aisle as me at the grocery store. When the back alarm get stuck and keeps going for more than twenty seconds, it drives me crazy.  Humor is good hiding place, and so is the bathroom.

Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.”…Matthew 22:37-40…I must confess that i am not well at loving others. I hope that loving others as you love yourself is a two way street. In the world today it seems one sided to me, people just love themselves.  Maybe i am around the wrong people? At times i feel stuck. How do you tell people to shut up and let me do my thing? There are a couple of things that i see are wrong. The first is that people don’t take the time to get to know anyone anymore. They make their judgements on what they see on the surface. They make assumptions that you are like minded and try to form some sort of bond. The second is that we do not take the time to understand anymore. “It’s all about me” is the way of the world now days, what can you do for me, and how can i manipulate you to get what I want. Lord help me to see the good in others.

I think there is a difference in loving yourself and being in love with yourself. They way some people talk about themselves there is no one else in the world but themselves. What happened to the days of humility and putting others first? Days of being respectful of what others need? Being a gentleman. Being a lady. I am sorry if i have not been respectful of your needs. What if you really got to know me? Don’t see my introvertedness as a sign of weakness, actually i am a lot stronger than you think I am. I like who i am and who I am becoming in Jesus.  Some days are good and some days are a struggle. I  am thankful most mornings to get a good night sleep and be able to get out of bed. There is more than what you see on the surface.

 

this little light of mine….


As i sat at the stoplight, and it was green, I watched as cars ran a red light, almost creating an accident. I thought to myself that people don’t change. I see it day after day, the running of red lights, and i think that it will continue until something drastic happens and they are forced to change. There will always be someone bragging about themselves, telling meaningless stories, or there will always be someone who is loud, or one who is always lazy, or has a cop out attitude. One who blames others for their problems, or one who likes meaningless arguments to try and get some moot point across that does not change the way the world spins. People do not take responsibility for their actions anymore. I think they see vulnerability as a weakness.

I haven’t blogged in a while for a multiple or reasons, non which are really legitimate. I have been lazy. Also i have a fear that my blogs really suck, and people might think that my life really sucks, that i constantly go through life with a negative attitude. I just look at things different and hope for a better out come. i wonder if people will ever get it and realize the only one who has to get it is me. Some days i am just thankful to get out of bed.  What do i know, i just listen to the same music from my youth over and over hoping for a better sound.

This year we will have our thirty year anniversary,  my football team isn’t going to the super bowl, and tomorrow is Monday and i will go to work and it will be just another day. i am hoping for a better out come. the phone will ring, people will be nasty and everyone will think of only what’s in it for themselves.  Well there is always hope. The sun will come out, and i will have to pull myself up with my own boot straps and trudge along with a smile on my face. That serving on another with a smile on your face is more than a one way street. It is a lot easier to help people when they are less demanding.

The world will never change, there will always be protests, political arguments, major attitudes, because we all think we know what is right. I am guilty of this. I can micro manage like the best of them. Change has to come from within. Once in a while that little light bulb comes on and  i think all i am responsible for is myself. The only real change that i can do has to come from within. I can be thankful and look for the goodness that is out there. It goes a lot easier when i see it within myself. Christ lives within. He came to set the captives free. i can only be as free as i allow myself to be. Don’t let world put out your fire, extinguish you passion. There is always hope. I have to believe that in the end, goodness is going to prevail. That one day things are going to look different. That love is going to triumph. That all that has been taken away will be restored. That it will not just be another day. That there will be rejoicing. That we will truly know that we are loved. That we will find what we are looking for. We will know the truth and it shall truly set us free, free from the world. I know that it is there and lives in the hearts of mankind. God is real and i want to see Him in His purest form, not clouded by earthly perceptions. Show me Your glory…….

in my cave


one of my fears
A bystander said, “Master, will only a few be saved?”

He said, “Whether few or many is none of your business. Put your mind on your life with God. The way to life—to God!—is vigorous and requires your total attention. A lot of you are going to assume that you’ll sit down to God’s salvation banquet just because you’ve been hanging around the neighborhood all your lives. Well, one day you’re going to be banging on the door, wanting to get in, but you’ll find the door locked and the Master saying, ‘Sorry, you’re not on my guest list.’

“You’ll protest, ‘But we’ve known you all our lives!’ only to be interrupted with his abrupt, ‘Your kind of knowing can hardly be called knowing. You don’t know the first thing about me.’

“That’s when you’ll find yourselves out in the cold, strangers to grace. You’ll watch Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the prophets march into God’s kingdom. You’ll watch outsiders stream in from east, west, north, and south and sit down at the table of God’s kingdom. And all the time you’ll be outside looking in—and wondering what happened. This is the Great Reversal: the last in line put at the head of the line, and the so-called first ending up last.”

this has always been a fear of mine. i can read this book and listen to that teaching. i could go to this church or that church, i could think i know the right people, but if i don’t know Him and He doesn’t know me what is the point of anything. can you say that Jesus knows you and that you truly know Him? I believe that right know He is saying “get to know Me”

now i don’t know what to think, who to trust or who to believe, i am finding contentment in my cave…..

A Mantle of Love….


Joe's Garage Logic

This morning I spent some time reading in First and second  Kings. It is some of my favorite chapters in the Old Testament. If there ever where some people who would have been some badass bikers before motorcycles came around, it would have been Elijah and Elisha. Them guys didn’t take no crap from anyone. for instance,” Elisha was on his way to Bethel and some little kids came out from the town and taunted him, “What’s up, old baldhead! Out of our way, skinhead!” Elisha turned, took one look at them, and cursed them in the name of God. Two bears charged out of the underbrush and knocked them about, ripping them limb from limb—forty-two children in all!”. You just don’t mess with one of God’s prophets. You just don’t see that happening now days. Or this with Elijah,”The king sent a captain with fifty men…

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the life of a perfectionist….


No matter how hard you try, you just can’t make everyone happy. Especially yourself.  You try and you try and just nothing works. You feel a little bit of yourself dying by the way. There is no way to please everyone. The demand from people is so intense that you want to explode, yet you try to remain in a calm demeanor.  You try to do a good job, hoping not to create more work for someone else. The word perfect is tossed around to casually these days. You have expectations out on others, you think you know what is best for everyone else, and deep down, I don’t even know what is best for myself. You look for encouragement, a life line, only to get pushed down deeper and you feel like you are drowning with no life lines. You would like to phone a friend and you find out that you have been abandoned, left to fight this battle on your own. No one to vent to, or someone who does care you end up sabotaging that relationship because it is easier to run away than be vulnerable one more time.

So you live a life of afraid to make mistakes. You beat yourself up when you feel like you have made another one. I tried so hard, I thought I had the paperwork right the first time. I feel like it is just another blow to my self esteem. I feel like, i look more at what is wring than what is right. What a tangled web your mind can weave, only to ending up catching yourself. You just dig that hole a little deeper. One more shovel full won’t hurt. I can still see daylight. I think you finally get to the point where you do not know where to turn or who to trust. Your mind is a constant bombardment of  thoughts you wonder did I dream this or did it really happen. Am I going crazy, maybe I am and this is just some giant matrix and will my team ever win the super bowl. You hang on by a thread hoping that tomorrow is better than today and you find out that Monday just takes off after last weeks chaos and you think that everyone is nuts and you just want to escape the madness that everyone calls reality. Then you realize that this is how society has been for thousands of years and you just want to get away, but Friday is still four more days away.

Then when you do look for help, you see that everyone else is on this sea of madness, and we are on the Titanic and there is an ice berg with our name on it. Each person is caught up in their own little crisis and try to drag you into their chaos. “I need this now”, “I can’t sleep with out i”, “help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”, it’s all you hear all day.  You never here, “how can I help you”, or “let me take some of your burden”, “how can I make your life easier?”. It’s like this giant monster called, “it’s all about me”, is out to get you. It sickens you and makes you stay awake at night. You try to feed this monster and make it happy, but it keeps growing and growing. The bigger it gets, the smaller my self worth becomes, I can’t make this monster happy, no matter how hard I try. I can’t please everyone, and I take it personally when they lash out at you because their hunger isn’t satisfied, and they want to make sure to take it out on you even when it’s clearly not my fault. So they use weapons like shame and guilt to try and get you to do their bidding.

Lies, all lies, and i am the fool for believing them Your poor planning or your inadequacies are not my fault or my problem. Your guilt and shame have no power over me. How dare some people use control and manipulation to try and get what they want, when they want it.  I have had my body broken and bruised, I have been locked up in a cell for a while, I have seen all kinds of people across this country, but what I remember most is those who helped, those who were kind. I may not always remember names, but i remember face, the kind gestures, those who wanted to help when I was at my lowest. Those who offered a kind word, and a hug when I needed one. The ones who didn’t judge or thought they were better than me. The ones who were genuine, the ones who didn’t always have an answer, or tell you how to do something. The know it alls. There are still people who are out there that you can see Jesus in. They may look like outlaws or hoodlums or normal people. You can tell a pure heart. You can tell who is real and who is in it for themselves.

I can try and try and I cannot please everyone. Sometimes you just need to shake the dust off your feet and let them go. I still make mistakes, but the key is to learn off f them. As much as i try to be, I will never be perfect. I never got straight a’s. I wanted to, but could never achieve it.  Maybe by doing well I thought that maybe I would be loved more. If that’s the case how could I please anyone, let alone God. The endless battle of striving to gain love and acceptance is slowly killing me. I can never overcome. I am a bundle of mistake just trying to look good on the outside. Day after day I can bring a wheelbarrow of shortcomings to God and there is still more. He just looks at me and shakes His head, and says, “boy you sure are a mess, you have a lot of problems. Come as you are and we will travel together. I love you just the way you are, even with all your wheelbarrow full. You don’t have to please me, I am already pleased with you. Stop your endless striving and come carry my burdens, my yoke is light and easy”. The way of the world is too hard. There is too much pressure to do this or look like that, or follow this person or that person. How do you know what is best for me, unless you have walked in my shoes. Jesus has, and he wears a size ten. Sometimes He carries me.

mmmmmm……pie


I think i have it all figured out. My dog wants to go outside, in order to do that, I need to put his harness on him. He knows that, but it is much more fun for him to have me chase him around  and around the table while he is barking his head off. Finally i give up and go and take a shower and try again after he is ready to receive what i have to offer.

That pretty much sums up my life. I know what i want, and i can shout my head off and run around in circles and end up with nothing. God tries to give me what he knows is best for me and i pretty much run around the table, being chased by Him, laughing and complaining how much my life sucks and He is chasing me,,”come here, come here” and i am not listening or thinking that He does not care and why is He not helping me. Don’t you see that i need help? one more trip around the table.

When it comes right down to it, i have no one to blame but myself. I am responsible for my own actions. Everyone is so caught up in their own needs. There is no humility any more. We are always looking to blame someone else for our shortcomings. Do people say they are sorry anymore. Why is it always someone else’s fault? People are so good at playing the blame and shame game. Yet we are experts on how everyone else should live their life. Stop and take a look at your own. remember that plank in your eye thing.

As far as life goes, i am no expert, look at me, i am blogging and i think i know something. As far as it goes, i really don’t know much. Half the time i feel like my life is in a tizzy and i do not know which way is up. I feel like i do not have any one to share my misery with. I am not sure where i stand with God some days and if there where an Olympics for worrying, i would win the gold every single time. I feel like I haven’t had a good day with God in years. Yet here i am hanging on by a thread. A sliver of hope. Yet i run around and around the table, barking my head off, hoping that someone will see my needs and help me. I have pretty much given up on people, no ones going to come in and give me a hug and pat me on the back and say there, there there, it’s all going to be just fine.

So i’ll pull myself up by my boot straps, stuff my anxiety in my pocket and put on a fake smile, and pretend that everything is fine, while i listen to everyone’s stories about how they think their life is so grand. I am sick of it. “I am not interested”, i think in the back of my mind as they dribble off into some mindless chatter. no wonder i am introverted, it’s a wall i can hide behind from the outside world. Well today is a new day, i want to be left alone, and in some ways i do not.

Go to your window if you must…..


So I want you to get up and take back what belongs to you. The enemy has been trying to steal, kill and maim you for years. He whispers lies into our years and we believe his crap. He is just out to mess you up and make you miserable. He will use whoever and what ever. He will distort the truth and use scripture to mess you up. What do you believe and who do you believe? Who is praying for you and what are they praying. Who do you trust? What are you going to believe?

Take back what is rightfully yours.  Jesus died so you could have freedom.   Life is too short on this earth to put up with crap.  You are a child of the Most High King. Take authority. What you bind in heaven will be bound on earth and what you let loose in heaven will be let lose on earth and vice versa. A terrible paraphrase but you get the point. You have authority. You can do it. If you have the faith of a mustard seed and you believe you can do it.  I am tired of feeling like i am being beat up and downtrodden. I am tired of seeing those I care for be beat up.  Jesus came so that i could have life, not go forth in pain and suffering. Just hoping to get by and hoping that tomorrow will be a better day.

I am settling for mediocrity anymore.  I believe in God the Father, Jesus Christ, out Lord and Savior, The Holy Spirit and the Forgiveness of sins.

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.  He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.  He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.  Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. ”

So the next time i feel like i am on the battle field.,i am going to look for the table to sit at and the  waiter to comes around and ask me if I want sausages or pizza, i know that i am always in his presence and that God is with me. When I am sitting at God’s table, He always brings His best. His Goodness is always there. I am going to see His goodness. Daily