The Write Place- Curtis Bruce Kessler

August 22, 2017

Faith That Defies Logic

Filed under: Uncategorized — Curtis Bruce Kessler @ 3:18 am
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Dad and I

I was a young boy who lived in the best little town in the south, Rincon, Georgia.  Rincon was a bedroom community of Savannah, Georgia.  Tall majestic pines swung in the southern breeze, massive oaks decorated by moss completed the scenery. I never feared walking the town or playing late at night.  It was just my dad and my family.  The world was ours.

One particular day my dad and I were walking with my uncle Allen and my best friend Wayne (cousin, I had one on every block).  The Rincon branch flowed through the town and along the property of my uncle William.  The water reminded me of the color of tea: however, you could still see clear to the bottom easily seeing the minnows and crawdads.  Lots of children played in this area. A pool had formed naturally at this spot.  This day the branch had swelled as we were graced earlier with a rain shower.

Wayne and I were poking around the branch, throwing rocks, watching them skip.  Without explanation and warning, we were instructed to strip down to our skimpies and cross the rapid stream.

I was downright puzzled.  This seemed to defy logic, at least from a boy’s perspective.  I was perfectly happy in my dry clothes.  I didn’t outwardly question my dad’s sanity.  But, we did as we were told.  Into the swirling water we went and traversed to the other side by using an old gas line for stability.  We were met on the other side with our dry clothes.  Nothing was ever said again.

I think about day often.  Never questioned my dad as to why this ever happened.  If someone had passed by and asked me why I was crossing a branch in my skivvies, my answer would surely been met with bewilderment and scorn.  After all, it defied logic.  But I loved my dad, trusted him, knew he had my best intentions in mind, even if it meant getting down to my skivvies.

I think about how the simple message of the cross is so perplexing and stunning.  We just cannot grasp the particulars and fit them all in an easy bag of logic.

“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” 1 Co.1:18

God’s logic is perplexing.

“But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty;and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not..”

Why would God move in this way?

“….to bring to nothing the things that are,that no flesh should glory in His presence.”         1 Cor.1:27-28

Faith is rooted in the cross.  What appears to the world as illogical or a lapse of logic, is in fact the difference between life and death.

“For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.”              1 Cor.1:21

Let’s bring this full circle.

“But of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God—and righteousness and sanctification and redemption—that, as it is written, “HE WHO GLORIES, LET HIM GLORY IN THE LORD.” 1 Co.1:30-31

Don’t listen to the noise around you.

God’s intentions for you are demonstrated on the cross.  No, he isn’t asking you to do something off the wall, but, do you trust Him?  Do you trust His judgment in the area of eternity? Defy worldly logic and defy your many doubts. God provides the wisdom needed to overcome the world- Jesus Christ.

Kess

 

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January 24, 2013

The Look

Filed under: Uncategorized — Curtis Bruce Kessler @ 11:59 am
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eyesI could never escape “The Look”. Wordless, timeless; a defining moment filled with meaning, conviction, purpose, hope, and love. The Look has all this and more.  I can get away with a lot of things but The Look transfixes me, anchors me, and grounds me.

The Look forces me to see the truth of things like no other.

We all come across a similar Look in the faces of those we love, those we respect, or people in position of authority like teachers or policemen.  I remember as a teenager in church one Sunday the guest speaker was anything but interesting or lively.  I decided to take matters into my own hand.  So, I began to write notes or use my index finger and middle finger pretending to be a person running a mad race over books, knees, and anything else.  We began giggling and soon my dad was standing next to the pew giving me the Look.  Red faced, I wanted to disappear.

Wives are famous in their art of simulating The Look.  Husbands are caught flat-footed many times and are frozen in mid-sentence with that magical Look from their lovely wives.  Parents have this art as well.  Just argue with your parents kids and the Look will quickly surface with amazing results.

However, all such Looks pale by comparison to The Look that stirs the heart of our soul. Who has The Look that causes such drama?  Jesus Christ!

Consider Peter whom Jesus specifically picked out to be an apostle.  Peter was excitable, strong willed, emotional, brazen, bold, and courageous.  But Jesus knew that Satan wanted to sift Peter like wheat.  The Devil had inside knowledge (as he does with all of us) that the outwardly strong Peter had a weakness of the heart.  Jesus prayed for the battle ahead, “But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to me, strengthen your brethren.” Lk.22:32.

Based on Peter’s own rash statement Jesus predicted he would fall away.  Peter subsequently became filled with pride, cussing, lying, and denying Jesus Christ. Sound like anyone you know?

Then the most important moment in Peter’s life occurred.  “…Immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed. And the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Then Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how He had said to him, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” So Peter went out and wept bitterly. Lk.22:60-62.

The Look from Jesus was a monumental shift for Peter.  Peter, who had wept so bitterly, would later write in 2 Peter 1:1 “Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ.”  He was once a rebel but now a servant.  What was once lost was now found in the righteousness of Jesus Christ.

The message of the cross cuts through the riff-raff and looks right into the heart of your soul. Jesus died to address your heart problem. God has always been interested in your heart.  1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”

Breathtaking and pivotal is The Look from Jesus Christ.

He is Looking at you through the Gospel message of Saving Grace. His love probes and stirs your heart.  Just as Noah found “favor in the eyes of God” so can you. You may feel far from help but salvation is only a Look away.  Will today be the life-changing moment for you?

Bruce

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