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"An Inside Perspective"

Christmas 2012


                           


My Dear Family in Christ,

Ever precious greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ! ! I love to come before you during this special time of year. It’s a wonderful time for us to reflect on, tweak and refocus our walk with the Lord Jesus Christ. Indulge me, please, in some reflective observations. For a week or so leading up to the landfall of superstorm Sandy, we were all inundated with meteorological information. This now includes prognostic weather maps with their celebrated and often perfidious spaghetti models. It was just a constant barrage of opinions concerning said storm’s arrival and the potential consequences thereof.

I sat back in awe and marveled at how the world just believes whatever they are told by the TV. The world’s media shapes their conversations and determines the topic of the day. It is then aped, or should I say preached, by all who embrace it. It’s to the point that people will lay hold of their favorite broadcaster and then trumpet that particular perspective. Be they right or wrong or should I say, be they left or right, it matters not. Sometimes they’re right and other times they’re dead wrong and I don’t use the word dead lightly.

It is written, “Even him, whose coming is after the workings of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” (2 Th.2:9-11)

Bear with me. I know it’s Christmas time but my goal is always to set before you a challenging Truth. I want to remind us that each season draws us closer to our Lord’s return. The enemy is tightening his noose around the neck of the world and make no mistake, soon he will cinch it.

It was Monday evening and Carlos and I were snug in our cage. As the storm approached, I sat in our window and watched the developing chaos. The cook-pots were already simmering and the smell of spaghetti sauce was sweet in the air. On an aside, we love to cook and make a nice meal when big storms arrive. We like to feed into the hoop-la to some degree because it promotes and soups up our desired end. (two puns intended) You might say that our palates are being provocatively teased in anticipation of the coming gourmet delight.

Usually, custody will call us back from work and lock the prison down in preparation for a big storm. That is our first cue that a good meal is coming. In fact, we save special food for just such occasions. Our final cue is when the prognosticators start with their noted spaghetti models. As soon as I see one, and much to Carlos’ delight, I jump up, do a little jig and into the cook-pots goes the spaghetti! Hallelujah!

The storm was beginning to rage and I sat in our window overlooking the Greenhouse. I saw some of the huge 13’x4’ roof panels being lifted off and carried away to who knows where. My first thought was, “Poor me.” Isn’t that something. People dying, their homes being destroyed, their very lives changed forever and I was worrying about my stuff. “I” was exposed as on the throne and that is the root of why we needed Christmas.

I then thought about what it must have been like for the Lord to sit in the window of Heaven and watch the fall of man. I pondered the Lord watching the roof panels of man, His prized creation, being blow off as he tumbled headfirst into sin. The Lord’s first thought was not, “Poor Me.” Man died with eternal consequence and behold - - -God Himself became the First Responder!

Beloved, the Lord our God was indeed the very first First Responder. In fact, His plan was put into place long before the Fall in anticipation of the coming villainous event. God is not a prognosticator. He is Truth and acts according to it. God does not need the world’s storied spaghetti models. He has a Son Who is all. Christ has come and He is yet coming.

Beloved, what is your first response when the proverbial panels of your roof get blown off? Note the difference between God and man. Our first response is me and mine, His is them and theirs. That is why we can rejoice this Christmas season that God has sent His Son Jesus Christ to us. He came the first time just as promised and you can be sure He will come again according to the Scriptures. That is no spaghetti model beloved, that is a forecast founded on a ROCK that cannot fail!

It is written, “Behold, He cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see Him, and they also which pierced Him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of Him. Even so, Amen.” (Rev. 1 :7)

Let us honor Christ’s first coming while anticipating His second. Are you prepared? Is your neck in this world’s noose of relative truth? It is tightening very slowly. When Christ comes again, what will be your first response? I know what mine will be! Much to Carlos’ delight, I will jump up, do a little jig and off I’ll go!

“MERRY CHRISTMAS BELOVED”

JOYFULLY IN JESUS,
LOVE, PHILIP