Photo by seabreeze on Morgue File.
There are 344 days remaining in the year. Describe what you’d like to be doing on day 211. (Hint: that’s July 30th.)
Having consulted my calendar, I found that the two-hundred and eleventh day of the year, July 30th, is on a Wednesday. It is a hump day. Hump day, for many, is the divider of the week; assuming, you work a five-day week. Hump day is the proverbial half empty/half full scenario. It is ambivalent: it could go either way. It all depends on your viewpoint; for most, they celebrate hump day as being half way to the weekend.
By the way, have you ever noticed we do not pronounce Wednesday as it is spelled. Now, in English this is not all that uncommon, we have a habit of not pronouncing letters are omitting vowels in pronunciation. If you are a native English speaker (or a native American speaker!) you just become use to this sort of thing. But, if you are ESL, it has to drive you up the wall! As far as Wednesday is concerned, we do not pronounce it the way it is spelled, because somewhere, way back in time, it was deemed too difficult for our linguistic palette. And besides, if you pronounce it the way it is spelled, it takes too long to do so. Try it: break it up into syllables and pronounce it the way it is spelled: Wed-nes-day. Now, say it as fast as you can . . . you will probably feel like you are conjuring up Sylvester the puddy-cat from Looney Toons as you spit all over your shirt!
So, instead of making a mess out of our shirt and taking too long to say a word, we pronounce it as if it were spelled Wendsday. There is a technical term for this phenomenon, certainly not unique to English, called metathesis. Metathesis is a word derived from the Greek that, as it relates to linguistics, is the rearranging of sounds or syllables; typically, to make the word more convenient to pronounce.
Okay, we will move on from the linguistic lesson!
I am sure, Lord willing, on that particular Wednesday I will be working and going to church that evening. Our church, like many protestant churches, has as its schedule to meet twice on Sunday and once during the mid-week for services. This schedule is changed from time to time for such things as holidays, revivals or the like.
Basically, on that day I hope and pray to be well and healthy. I pray my family is the same. I pray to have the full function of my facilities, physical and mental, and to carry out the tasks of the day as God appoints them to me.
It is too often true, that even as Christians, we take so much for granted. We assume too often upon God’s grace and kindness. We should, everyday, thank God for our health. Thank him for our hands and arms, feet and legs, joints and muscles. We should thank him for the ability to stand upright and move and walk and work and play. We should thank him for our eyesight and hearing and our reasoning abilities. We tend to take many of these for granted, until one of them is lost to us, either permanently or temporarily.
If you have ever sprained an ankle, or hurt a finger and not had the normal use of that part of your body, even the smallest part, you soon realize how much you depend upon it without even realizing it. You suddenly become very grateful for that part of your body.
Not only should I be thankful for my physical health, but my spiritual health as well. Not only should I be thankful on that day, and everyday, but I should be striving to live the life Christ has called me to live.
There are rich and sacrificial challenges given to us, as followers of Christ, in God’s word. Jesus commands us to take up our cross, daily, denying ourselves and follow him (Luke 9.23). (I have written concerning this HERE if you want to check it out.)
What is this command about? It is about taking up a cross, which in his day meant nothing short of death. As a Christ-follower, I am to die daily to my self: it is a death to self. A death to my ambitions and my will and a submission to his. So that I can exclaim as the apostle Paul, I am crucified with Christ, yet I live, yet not I, but Christ lives in me. (Gal. 2.20) In fact, Paul puts it this way, in reference to this life of discipleship, I appeal to you, therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God. (Rom. 12.1)
In his letter to the church in Colossae, Paul will put forth this challenge to believers, Whatever you do in word or action, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God, the Father by him. (Col. 3.17) That is no easy task. It is not for the faint of heart. The fence sitters and the wafflers are not going to make the cut. It is a life of sacrifice and submission to his Lordship and authority.
In fact, if that was not enough, Paul goes even further, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, saying, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ . . . (1 Cor. 10.5)
As a professed Christ-follower, I am called to do exactly that: follow Christ. I am called and commanded to live life pleasing unto him, honoring him in my thoughts, motivations, attitudes, opinions, desires, hopes, dreams, wishes, goals, plans, perspectives, words and actions.
The prayer of my heart should be, Lord, by the power and grace of your Holy Spirit, make me truly, wholly Thine. Take the thoughts of my mind that they would be trained under the mind of Christ. Take my hands that they would perform your work this day. Take my feet that they will be on-mission to share your gospel. Take my eyes that they would see the things unseen. Take my mouth that it would speak in truth, love and gentleness. Take my ears that I would listen to your voice. Take all that I am, all I hope ever to be, and consecrate me to your service, as a living sacrifice, bearing my cross for the glory and honor of my Lord, my Savior, my Messiah, my God, Jesus Christ. Amen and Amen.