Contemplation, This Morning

I woke up this morning…

ThinkerWith a “contemplative” mind. Not on any one area of thought, but on many fronts. I have often taught that every side of a story as 40 sides, sort of a “generational” view to how many ways you can view an event, or situation, or even a person.

Analytical comes to mind.

Poly-visual (yes, I know – a made-up word!)

Yet an earlier email, a situation that I need to put some thought to, some questions that need to be answered, and a future actions to consider…. all of this made me consider the critical thought that needs to be applied. And I might not like the answer, or the answer may totally surprise me.

William of OckhamSo, I put it to the Razor Test. You might not know my meaning, but the phrase often used is Occam’s Razor.

“With all things being equal, the simplest explanation tends to be the right one.” ~William of Ockham

In the 14th century, he was an English Franciscan friar and scholastic philosopher and theologian – and he got away with it! Somehow he could discuss philosophy and theology and produce some remarkable discussions on the subject. His razor produced scholarly work on physics, logic and theology.

Notice the middle of those last three words. Logic. I love logic, and logical thinking. Many things I believe today are part and parcel of who I am because of logic. This is not a blind denial of everything around that I cannot prove, rather, it is the acceptance of things I might not be able to understand. Yet I can prove that they exist and work together for the good of all.

Perhaps this is missing in the minds of people today. They end up focusing down one pathway of thought (or study) and they miss all the other paths that augment and support each like the pieces of an automobile move in sync with all the other pieces, sort of magically supporting their role and the whole.

For too many, their logic works only in one discipline and they never sense the articulation of everything working together, albeit from a different angle of explanation.

King David, a major influencer in Godly thought, was a warrior, as well as a thinker. He followed after God, yet he was easily swayed by tempestuous storms of human frailty. But the words he leaves us over the centuries are critical to our way of life as a follower of God today.

Psa 27:1-4 KJV  A Psalm of David. The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?  (2)  When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.  (3)  Though an host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.  (4)  One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.

Separate from my studies, which are eclectic and exists with many holes, I am blessed to consider many lives, teachers, examples and simply people I enjoy knowing.

Consider my birth year. Famous births include Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, along with famous deaths that include James Dean and Einstein. Though I care little about the death of James Dean, it seems like there are many who were greatly impacted just 9 months after I was born. The other three men, however, produced a world around which I revolve. Technology and Thought. I don’t have the brain capacity or experience of any of these men, but as I look back I can sense their framework affecting my own life.

Some may think it strange to remember any of these men, but I have contemplated their lives, and of many other who have impacted my life.

Comparing myself to these two giants in the arena of technology sent me down several rabbit trails… What have I accomplished with my life? How will I be remembered? Will I have any good quotes? Will I have done anything special that anyone anywhere will take special note of at my passing? What will be my legacy?

When it comes to Pastors, there have been several that have touched my life and I have honored them in previous writings, but Bishop James Kilgore and Bishop Frank Jones and Pastor Brett Jones have done more to shape the person I am today than they could even imagine. Again, I honor them for their touch that keeps me focused. There have been some teachers of my younger years that were my favorite for a variety of reasons, but Kitty Sue Barber rises to the cream of example – 8th Grade Literature…

Hence, my focus on this chapter of David’s Psalm, and more importantly, this one verse. You see, David was a giant of his day. It may not have been apparent at the time of his various stations of life, but historically, we all see him as a powerful person in scripture. Abraham may be the “father and friend of God” and Moses the “savior” and Saul the “first king”… But David is totally different than all these others. He was the youngest, the simple shepherd, the slayer, the singer, the writer, the anointed one to be King, … Perhaps this list is too long to do it justice in these few short sentences.

One of the things I see in David is the example of how to turn a bad choice around and reconnect with God.

Even with all of these thoughts, I find that David gives me an opportunity to “fill in the blank” of how I would like to be remembered. For every situation in life there may be different answers to this “one thing”, but I ultimately want to be known as a child of God.

How would you finish this sentence? “One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; ____.” What is the desire of your heart? However you choose to answer will reveal a lot about who you are and what your priorities in life may be.

In the city where followers of Christ were first called “Christians” (Acts 11:26), Paul shares a brief history of Israel to a synagogue in Antioch. One translation of Acts 13:22 declares that God called David a man whose “…heart beats like mine…” This, of all other translations, set me to thinking what it must be like “To have the heartbeat of God.”  I started looking for this concept of a heartbeat…

Take note of this thought…

heartbeat  is a single complete pulsation of the heart or a very short space of time, while a pulse  is the rate at which the heart beats or the underlying feeling, emotions, or sentiments of a group of people.

Your epitaph may read like history to the world, but that normally occurs after your heart stops beating. What does your life say about who you are right now? Is your heart beating like God’s?

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