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Posts tagged with: selfishness

Trajectory – Shift Happens

One decision, one person, one integrity problem, one accident, one encounter…and your entire life trajectory can be altered for eternity. We are all just one decision from having our entire life trajectory being altered for eternity. I have never in my life imagined living in Orlando Florida. I planted a church in Phoenix Arizona and dreamed to be the Lead Pastor of that Church for 40 years and then retire and pass the baton to one of my sons and ask to have the Church broom so I could be the Church Janitor and best cheerleader the new pastor could dream of. To be perfectly honest I hate the phrase, ‘If you want to make God laugh just tell Him your plans.” I hate it, but I get it.

I am completely dumbfounded, flabbergasted, blown away, that I now live in Orlando Florida. My family’s trajectory change has moments of thrill and moments of chill…yah…the bad kind of chill. One decision… has me living 2,180 miles from anything I have ever known and facing giants and obstacles that make my skin crawl, my heart ache, my blood pressure to rise, and my heart to beat faster for the thrill of the challenge. One decision led to this. One decision that I know I was supposed to make. How do I know that I was supposed to make it? Because God told me to. It was so clear that, if I had to make the decision again, knowing what I know now, I would have to make the same decision because God was that clear. Steve Jobs said that we can never connect the dots looking forward, only looking back. Others say we all have 20/20 hindsight.

So the average comfy Christian would reply to my paragraph above, “Its okay, Trent…God must have wanted you to live in Orlando Florida and have you doing what you are doing now…or… what happened wouldn’t have happened, its all God’s plan…so let go and let God.” Isn’t that convenient. I’m not a Calvanist and I think that answer is a copout. Its wrong to place all the blame or responsibility on God. Its easy to blame God for the disasters/trajectory changes going on in your life. When you blame God nobody else has to accept responsibility. The phrase, “God’s Got This” is true but that is different than saying God caused this. Want an example?

Adam and Eve. Did God plan and intend for them to break His rules of not eating of the specific trees in the Garden of Eden? Did God tell Himself before He created Adam and Eve….”Hey I’m going to create this thing called people and I am going to love them because I made them in my image to be like me…but in my plan I’ve got this little fun twist I want to play around with…I’m going to cause them to screw it all up. I am going to watch them become ashamed of each other and then I plan on watching them kill each other and then I’m going to kill my own Son to pay the price for their screw ups and how fun it will be…because I”m gonna blow them all away by raising my son from the dead after I kill Him! God leans to His right and asks His Son…”Sound Cool, Jesus?” “You up for this great plan, Son?” Jesus says, “that’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard, Dad.” God replies, “Oh, Jesus…don’t be a bad sport. You can do it! Think of the adventure!” So God proceeds with his “will” and for thousands of years orchestrates rapes, gangster murder, divorce and hate, suicide bombers, as He leans back into His memory foam love-sac and from His game room in His gated community called Heaven, xbox 360 controller in hand, intensely playing through His favorite game called Life. Press X for Jump, Y to knife, UP arrow to receive prayer, DOWN arrow for eternal punishment…

Too cynical for you? Yah…me too…I’m in a sassy mood. Its been a rough week. It all makes we want to scream from my roof top that Life was never intended to be this way. If you can read through my cynicism there’s actually a good lesson here.

Trajectory Shift. Your’s might shift tomorrow. Everything you’ve been doing for the past 13/20/60 years could be completely annihilated before your very eyes…tomorrow. If it happens you’ll be put in a trajectory change that will make you question everything you thought you knew about life, the people around you and leave you screaming, Why?!” Ask yourself… Do you trust that person you are about to make the deal with? Do you trust your spouse? Do you trust your dad? Do you trust that taxi driver as you jump in the back seat. Do you trust the engineer who just built the bridge. Do you trust the man who put the bolt in the truss hanging over your head in that giant football stadium? Do you trust the driver on the other side of the dotted yellow line? Do you trust the councelor who is meeting behind closed doors with your child? Do you trust the guy working under you as he sees the rungs of the ladder above you? Do you trust the spiritual mentor you’ve had in your life for the past 20 plus years? Do you trust your preacher and how he handles the church finances? Do you trust the man dressed up in a SWAT uniform carrying a gun across the parking lot of the movie theater? Trust and Trajectory shifts…they go hand in hand.

Its tough to walk the fine line of trusting someone, something, and at the same time making sure everybody signs the dotted line of security.

In God We Trust…everybody else pays cash and signs the agreement.
I’ve learned in the past year about trust and security and trajectory shift. God is the only one we can fully trust without thinking much about it, without worry, without stress. He always has our best interest in mind, even if it doesn’t feel good. Everybody else…you will have to choose to trust, it will require some security backup like contracts and waivers. Even then its a finicky trust. Its a trust that if all parties aren’t seeking the best interest of each other it will end up in a trajectory shift in your life that will take your breath away and you will be bothered by it the rest of your life. Shift Happens!

I chose to trust. 20/20 hindsight proves that it was a blind and naive trust. I didn’t have anybody sign the agreement that I wrote up. I didn’t get perfect clarity before I committed. I feel like a dummy. I trusted. I quietly pulled back the paperwork, folded it in half and slid it in my back pocket. Oh…I’d like that 20 seconds of time back. I believed in the idealistic dream that everybody has everybody else’s benefit in mind. You see…it takes two to make a plan work right. It takes all parties listening to God and behaving like God to make God’s plan work. Even one entity thinking only for themselves and the deal is bust. Trajectory Shift starting in 10…9…8…

I do not blame anyone, but myself. I don’t blame the other party. I most definitely do not blame God. I’m just heart broken over all the shift! Its a load of shift. I’m sick to my stomach…frequently…about it all. What does a man do now? I know the answer to that question!

You get up, shake the dust off your clothes and put your feet on the ground and start over. What else can you do? It doesn’t work to keep laying in the dirt bloodied and pathetic. It doesn’t work to listen to the voice of the critic. It doesn’t work to listen to the voice of one who is celebrating as you suffer the shift. You get up! Tomorrow arrives consistently everyday. Time keeps ticking whether I want it to stop or not. I must choose to fully grasp the shift and make the most of it. Shifts make for new beginnings, new places, new plans. Pain and trajectory shifts are twins. Pain doesn’t mean its bad, its just reality. Trajectory shifts means somebody didn’t get what they hoped for. That causes agony, but new beginnings too. My trajectory shift has landed me in another part of the country and feels like another part of the world. My trajectory shift has me realizing that everybody is the same whether you live in Arizona or in Florida…Uganda or Peru…Jerusalem or Paris.

I am truly understanding for the first time in my life what the Bible means by all Creation groans for the return of the King, Jesus Christ. I used to think only weak people groaned for the return of Jesus. I’ve realized its just the opposite. People who really haven’t faced a crushing trajectory shift in their life, who sit under the umbrella of false security and false contentment are the soft ones who don’t understand why people groan for the return of Jesus. If you aren’t groaning for the return of Jesus you have the “blessed” position of comfort and a life truly unaltered. You’ve gotten your way for too long. To this type of person, it is alarming to think of Jesus returning, for life is too good to have it all end now. Death terrifies this type of person because life is too good. What a crazy, wild, out of control world we live in…its quite thrilling if you think about it. I guess its all how you view life.

I am astonished at the patience and love that Jesus carried with Him every minute of the short time He lived here as one of us. He encountered such selfish people. On rare occasions we can see when He encountered a person that “inspired” Him. It was usually a person who had faced incredible hardship and trajectory shifts in their life. It takes my breath away when I think about how much restraint, that God the Father must have, to NOT send His Son back down here to settle the score once and for all and end the nonsense, the selfishness, the clamoring for power and privilege and position. Fighting for who answers to who. Scheming to get what they want when they want it. I want to scream…Jesus…please stop the madness! God’s patience is maddening to me and at the same time a beautiful gift to me. And you!

Its enough to make a pastor throw in the towel of ministry to go work at Home Depot. But…

No chance.
I’ll never quit.
Yes…I said it…Never.

I have been crushed. The crushing has made me smarter, harder, more aware. I’m not sure if all of those things are good or not? I assume it depends on how I use those knew weapons from this day forward.

Time tells all things. Trajectory shift changes all things.
For now…the trajectory has shifted. Shift happens. I can handle it. It just makes me weary. I must rest…for tomorrow is guaranteed to begin. The sun will rise. The Son will return. In the mean time….
I’ll try not to screw it up. If I do…that’ll change the trajectory again. Trajectory change wouldn’t be so bad if it was just me that it affected. The trajectory shift I experienced a year ago…because of one decision,…affected more than 20,000 people. Their trajectory was altered, even though multitudes of them will never know. I wish it would have just affected me. I faced an incredibly scary decision just a few nights ago that I had to make. I made it and my trajectory has shifted again. This trajectory shift has affected nearly 1000 people. In the next few days and weeks all involved with experience more trajectory shift because of the choices of a few.

I wonder if there is a viewing room in Heaven where we can someday go to see what should have been or what could have been if all parties would have just acted like Jesus. I don’t think an actual room exists, though, because the Bible says there will be no tears. Sitting in the viewing room of what should have been, would make any viewer watching their “should have been life” flash before their eyes, cry. If there was such a room, it would have a no vacancy sign on because it would be full of those who insisted that their life stay the same. It will be full of people who clawed and fought for only what they want. The video playing in that room will terrify those who refused to change, stretch, grow, give and risk. If you haven’t faced tremendous trajectory shift in your life, it will only be a matter of time. I think there are two kinds of people in the world. Those coming out of a crushing trajectory shift and those who are getting ready to enter a crushing trajectory shift.

As hard as the trajectory shift is…the shift is actually a gift from God. This wasn’t all in God’s plan. I will never know what God had planned in the plan before this trajectory shift. I will be thought provoked for the rest of my life wondering what could have been if everybody would have stayed in God’s will.
The things that happened has caused God to have to change His plan. It has caused God to pick up the ashes
What does a man do in this situation?

It makes him simply say…What now Lord? Here I am use me.

Trust God that He didn’t cause this trajectory change. Man did.
Trust God at His word that He’ll make beauty from ashes. He will.

The Shift is a Gift!

May your past be the sound of your feet upon the ground.
Carry on.

Trent


HYDRATE — WINNING FROM THE INSIDE 3 (Mt.5:5) “Meek”


“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”
Matthew 5:5

DRINK IT IN:
Are you meek? The average person might respond, when asked this question, with, “heck no…I’m not meek!” This character trait, called meekness, is not one that the world determines to be of value. In fact, I would say, that the world believes that if you are meek you are weak. The world would continue to say, ‘If you are meek, then you are weak, which means you are going to get your butt kicked over and over and finish last.” Jesus would push back on this argument by saying, “The last shall be first.” Jesus also would say, “whoever exalts himself will be humbled and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.”

So, I suppose the big question is this. Who’s right? Jesus, or the world? When “its” all said and done…does Jesus win? When the world is finished as we know it today, will Jesus have been right? I’m not a betting man…but this one is worth betting on! This is one bet I’m willing to go, “All In!”

Let’s get right to it. What is MEEKNESS?

Maybe a better way to understand what being meek is, is to first understand what it is not. An easy way to understand meekness, is to first admit, that JESUS IS MEEK. We know that Jesus was strong and had all the power of God, the Father. We know that Jesus got angry and made a whip and used it to whip people out of the Temple. We know that Jesus called the Religious leaders bad names. So meek does not mean weak. Meek does not mean, to remain quiet. It most definitely does not mean timid. Meek does not mean, never get angry. Meek does not mean to think poorly of yourself. It does not mean that you should think of yourself as of little worth.

Meekness does not demand to think poorly of yourself, I think meek simply means that you do not think about yourself much at all.

A meek person is a secure person. A meek person accepts that they, in the big picture of life, are small and do not have real control. A meek person knows that their Creator is great and totally in control. A meek person knows that they have been made in the likeness of their Creator. A meek person knows that they are a child of Almighty God and that cannot be taken away. A meek person knows that God doesn’t NEED them, but wants to know them and work together with them to bring a touch of Heaven to earth. A meek person does not have to defend themselves, because they are already secure in who God made them to be. A meek person believes in what God says about them and ignores what other people say about them.

A meek person can have unbelievable power and strength and could dominate any situation they wanted to control. But a meek person doesn’t have to control and they acknowledge this fact and are okay with it. A meek person understands the Bible passage that says, “Where I am weak, God is strong.” A meek person’s major goal is to do his/her very best to behave like Jesus Christ and leave the results up to God. To the meek, ALL CONTROL belongs to God.

I think that is a solid idea of what MEEK is.

Now what does Jesus mean when He says that the meek shall inherit the earth?

Some people are confused about what Heaven is going to be like. Some people are confused about what the end times are really going to be like. Now, the reality, is that none of us knows every detail, but the Bible does paint a strong picture of what Heaven is going to be like. Its pretty clear in the Scriptures, that when Jesus returns to settle the score once and for all with the devil, that everything on the earth is going to be destroyed. It doesn’t necessarily say that the Earth is going to be destroyed. Everything is going to be destroyed by fire. That means that God is going to rebuild. Re-new and re-do. Maybe its kind of like when God “destroyed” everything with the great flood. God started over. The Bible says that a New Jerusalem will be built and placed on earth. Sin will be destroyed. Our earthly bodies will be destroyed and we will be given new bodies for our souls to live in. The Bible talks about relationships, food, worship, no more pain, etc. etc. when it explains Heaven.

Its very easy for me to read the Bible, and be able to say, that Heaven is going to be just as physical and real as our lives are today. Heaven is earth renewed to what God intended when He first created it all from the very beginning. If you would like to do a very technical study on Heaven, then I would highly recommend Randy Alcorn’s book titled, “Heaven.” It will excite you about the realities of Heaven. Your expanded understanding of Heaven will encourage you to work on your meekness…because the meek will inherit the earth!

Be meek. It will be worth it. It might make you finish last here on earth…but…the promise is…the meek shall be first in eternity! Hmmm…not a bad deal. Call it delayed gratification. The average life span is about 85 years. Eternity is forever. I’ll trade 85 years of potential last places for an eternity of Champion.

Have you ever said this phrase…”Your day is coming?” That phrase can be spoken to both the non-meek and the meek. Which ever one you are or choose to be…Your Day is Coming!

Its your choice which one you want to be.

SWEAT IT OUT:

Are there areas in your life where you are not meek? Maybe ask a trusted person in your life to help you notice areas.
Are there things you are trying to control and/or force to happen?
Who have you been “dominating” lately in life? What can you do today to elevate them and show more meekness?

How would your day look today, if you chose to let God have all the control and you focused only on behaving in a way that honors God?

Maybe, an easy way to remember how to live today as a person of meekness, is to remember these two words.

HONOR & DELIGHT.

What if all day…you focused on “honoring” the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, Jesus Christ & worked on “delighting” the people that God puts in your circle of influence?

Think that would make your day a good one? Ultimately it won’t matter if your day is a good one or not…what will matter is that you will be a person of Meekness.

If you are meek, then Jesus says you are Blessed!

Have a meek day.