Dirtiest Job

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Several years ago there was a show on Discovery channel named Dirty Jobs that was hosted by a man named Mike Rowe. To be honest, I had to look up how many seasons they filmed because I couldn’t quite watch it due to a soft stomach. Believe it or not, the show was filmed for 9 seasons, and for many people it was a favorite. I could never imagine myself going to work in environments such as the deadly snake wrangler. How do you even interview for a job like that? There were also jobs like sludge recycler, sewer inspector, garbage collector, road-kill collector, and pig farmer, and those are just from Season 1 alone. I guess someone has to do these jobs and believe me, I’m just glad someone does since I happen to like bacon. Here is a list of the top ten dirty jobs according to the show:

 

Garbage Collector

Gastroenterologist

Dairy Farmhand (Shout out to Dean Hammond)

Sewage Cleaners

Oil Rig Personnel

Coal Miner

Embalmer

Hazardous Material Remover

Pest Control Removal Specialist (Shout out to Jeff Terwilliger)

High Rise Window Washer

 

As we think of the Cross, we must remember that Jesus truly took the lowest position for all so that we could experience eternal life. Jesus showed His disciples just how far he would stoop to serve them. In John 13:4-8 you see this incredible act of love and service to his disciples.

 

  1. ” So he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.6. He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?” 7. Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”8. “No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”

 

Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”

 

If you have ever participated in a foot washing service you know how humbling it is. This act would have shocked the disciples because in Jesus’ day, this act was reserved for the lowest servant. It was a task that a Gentile slave may do for their master or a host or hostess might have washed the guest’s feet. With that understanding, we can see why Peter would say never! But Jesus was clear with him, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”

 

The Cross is the most humbling act and is hard for us to look to. That Jesus was willing to lower himself for me? That’s incredible love that I cannot understand. We must remember that without this humble servant, without the Cross, and without the empty tomb, we could have no part in Eternity. Praise God that he was willing to humble himself for you and me.

 

 

Philippians 2:6-7

  1. Who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7. But emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. 8. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.…

 

May we learn to truly live in that example, to empty ourselves for the sake of others. It has been said that humility is not thinking meanly of oneself; it is simply not thinking of oneself at all. True humility grows out of our relationship with the Father. No one, in all of history has fulfilled that definition better then Jesus Christ.

Brian

A hard RESET

Reset

Have you ever wanted a “reset” in life? I remember growing up I was a pretty avid gamer. The graphics on Pitfall were amazing! What I remember is that if you got in a jam on the game or maybe if the game froze up, there was a simple thing that you did. You just hit the reset button and you got a fresh start. Game on!

When it comes to life, we all wish we could hit that reset button. I know that in my ministry throughout the years I have let a lot of people down. I am sure that through the years I have hurt my family by not being there when I should have been. There are many days that my spiritual life has been pretty weak at best and I have rushed into my day without asking for God’s guidance. There are times when I have said something and the moment I said it I wished I had never spoken. It would be easier to put the toothpaste back in the tube, but the real truth is we can’t even put the toothpaste lid back on let alone back in the tube.

Life can be pretty messy and we end up hurting people along the way. I’ll never forget my first day on the job working at Bethel IGA. I was the new guy so I was told to fill the milk, which was the rookie job. I had to load the crates up on a two-wheeler and take them out about six to eight crates high. Everyone was scrambling around to get their work done so we could get out of there at 10 o’clock.  Of course, I was moving quickly too with that awkward first day on the job trying to impress everyone urgency. Did I mention that I was a rookie already? Did I mention that it was the first day on the job and that I was trying to really impress the boss?  Did I mention that you are supposed to hold the crates of milk as you pull back on the two-wheeler so the crates don’t fall over? Well, no one mentioned it to me on that day either so the next question is, do you know how much square footage about 20 gallons of busted milk will cover? Go home today and bust just one gallon on your kitchen floor to see. Needless to say it was in that moment I desperately needed a reset button. I cringed in that moment and felt pretty stupid. Also, by the way, my big brother worked there too and in that moment he did not have the gift of encouragement.

It’s one of those experiences I can laugh about today. In life however there are really messy hurts and brokenness that we don’t forget. There are moments when we let someone down and created a real mess for their lives. Even if you have done that, you may not be able to change what you did but can I tell you about the greatest reset button of ALL time? Jesus Christ on the cross said “IT is finished”, and with that for those who put their trust in him, RESET!!!

Psalm 103:11-12

“For His unfailing love toward those who fear Him is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth. He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.”

RESET!!!

Revelation 21:5 (ESV)

“And He who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also He said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

RESET!!!

May we learn to live and trust in those words,  RESET!

Brian White

 

 

Never Stop Seeking!

Every year on Christmas Day TBS shows the classic “A Christmas Story” where Ralphie, of course, is waiting for that perfect gift: The Red Rider BB Gun. Just mention the words Red Rider and the first thing that comes to mind is, “You’ll shoot your eye out kid!” The truth is we have seen the movie a thousand times thanks to TBS taking a break from their regular programming to give us those memorable scenes. There is the “triple dog dare you”, the granddaddy of them all. Also, “the bunny suit”, getting his mouth washed out with soap, and the major award that could be seen from Cleveland Street. If you have never seen this movie, then you must have your TV off on Christmas day. There is one scene where Ralphie is so excited after receiving his Little Orphan Annie secret decoder. To his surprise he would now be able to decode the secret message. The anticipation was lifted when he received the final word, “Be sure to drink your Ovaltine”. Let’s just say old Ralphie was not impressed.

Sometimes I think we approach God’s word as if there is this great mystery, or that we need some sort of decoder to understand the message. I don’t believe God’s word was ever meant to be a mystery. There are things about God that we certainly do not understand; things that we must take in faith. However, I feel that He has given His word so that we can begin to understand who He is, and what He desires for us to have.

Luke 8:10 Jesus said, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is in parables, so that SEEING THEY MAY NOT SEE, AND HEARING THEY MAY NOT UNDERSTAND”. This was of course after the Parable of the Sower and He goes on to say the seed is the word of God. He explained how each different person had placed themselves in a situation that did not allow the word to take root. When I read this, I don’t see barriers that God has placed in our life. I see barriers that we allow. God’s desire is for all to be with Him in heaven. His desire was so strong that He would send his Son to be with us. So if I were to unlock a mystery, what would I do? Let’s start with four areas.

  1. Be Present. How many times do we see God call someone in the Bible and the words that come out of their mouth are “Here I am Lord?” I do not believe it is by accident that these words occur in scripture. I believe God is saying if you want to find me, you need a willing heart first. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” Jeremiah 29:13.

 

  1. Be Proactive. Is there something in your life that gets in the way of seeking Him? Is there a distraction or sin that you need to take care of?

 

  1. Be Purposeful. Jesus taught us the greatest commandment, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Our purpose is found in loving God and loving others.

 

  1. Be Persistent. James 1:5 says if you need wisdom ask our generous God and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. That doesn’t sound like a God who is throwing up roadblocks or mystery to block the way. He calls us to be persistent and not give up. When we are persistent we will receive the crown of life. NEVER STOP SEEKING!

Who’s In Control?

Jesus said, “Come and follow me and I will make you fishers of men.” When we read those words or talk about the disciples following Him, the most amazing part is that they left what they knew to follow Jesus. They had no idea the places He would take them, the things that He would teach them, or certainly how it would end; or shall I say begin. I would love to think that I would have gone if called in that moment. However, there is a good chance that I would have declined. Honestly, true discipleship isn’t easy and true discipleship goes against our very nature. First, we are comfortable. We like things just the way they are. There are churches that sometimes fall into this category of being content with the current “sheep pen”, and almost go out of their way to make sure that the pen stays the same size. Why do we do that? I feel it’s because we are creatures of habit. We sit in the same pew (chief sinner here), we go to the same places to eat, and do the same daily routines. So, what is the common denominator in being comfortable or retaining habits? I believe we do these things because they are the things we can CONTROL. The real beauty about the disciples and their first steps away from all that they knew to follow Christ was by doing so they were essentially saying, “We don’t know where we’re going, but we’re ready to follow the One who is in control of all things”. What would it take to allow Christ that opportunity in your life? If we would only do so imagine the places we could go.