Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Tan Lines

I must admit that after spending the last three months teaching tennis outdoors, in the sunshine, my tan has never had a more solid base and my body has an incredible healthy golden bronze hue. I am looking pretty good these days!!

The other day I took Faith and Joshua to the pool and when I took off my shoes and socks and my t-shirt I realized something very horrifying... My feet are the most brilliant pasty white you have ever witnessed. My torso is equally pale in color and hue. I am not looking so good these days!!

Reality set in quickly as I realized I am only tanned and bronzed where the sun shines.

My iWitness...

To further complicate things, after making this awful discovery I quickly lathered my pale body parts with sunscreen that had the sunblock number 250 on the side of the bottle. I did the best I could to keep the pale parts exactly that - PALE!

The harsh, stark reality is that I only let people see the tanned parts of my body of which I am most proud.

This raised a very deep question for me as I sat poolside wallowing in my own dilemma.

My spiritual life is only "tanned" and "bronzed" and worth showing off to the world around me where I allow the "Son" to shine.

Those areas of my spiritual life that are "pale", I go to great lengths to cover them up with "Sonblock"!

The time has come for me to take off the "shoes and socks and t-shirts" of my spiritual life and let the Son shine His light on me in such a way so as to have a more evenly "tanned" life.

Let the "Son" shine today and let the "pale" parts of life soak in the life giving rays of His love and grace!

And that's my iWitness...
Laugh often and Fear not!

"Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, 'I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.'" (John 8. 12)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Best Friend, Worst Enemy

I ran into a friend of mine yesterday that I hadn't seen in a long time.
We have a very unusual relationship.
He's been my best friend.
He's also been my worst enemy...

My iWitness...

We stood face to face and acknowledged one another.
Yesterday our relationship was somewhere between friend and tolerable acquaintance.
He looks much younger than I remember even though the gray around his temples would suggest otherwise.
His compassionate eyes still have that sparkle but they also looked tired and lost, longing for something of which I wasn't quite sure...
I inquired, "How ya doing?"
His response of, "You know..." left me wanting to scream, "No! I don't know!"

That awkward moment finally eased into a gentle conversation about life, family and transitions.
He seemed a little out of sorts, a little off balance, as if his "A" game was playing at a "C-" level.
He is a man of great faith and devotion. Talented and gifted in many ways. The best I could tell was that he had taken some hits lately and simply needed a few "W's" in the win column to get back on his feet again.

I tried to offer some assurances.
His green/hazel eyes stared back at me, penetrating my deepest intentions with a look of, "I've heard all of this before."

His hearty laugh broke the tension and I laughed with him. O how many times we have laughed out loud about so many of life's events and peculiarities.

Our shoulders seemed to relax the more we talked.
Before we knew it a good chunk of time had passed.
The silence that announces that the conversation is over for now arrived...

We stared at one another, "best friend, worst enemy" and then he gave me that look...
that look that belies the circumstances, issues and feelings of the day and offers with supreme confidence that God willing, he will be back, he will run again, he will even soar as if he were an eagle!

He flashed me that brilliant smile..
His left eye gave me that knowing wink that I have come to love for many years...
It was time to say goodbye...
And with that I turned and walked away from the mirror...

And that's my iWitness...
Laugh often and Fear not!

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right spirit within me.
Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit." (Psalm 51. 10-12)