What’s On Your Lamp Stand?

Okay – Although lately I haven’t had much time for television, I’ve probably been watching too many episodes of “Criminal Minds.” Recently, while exiting my car a young man @ 15 years old unexpectedly approached me from behind and said; “My mom has a car just like that.” Ordinarily, I would engage such conversation except that the young man had this half smile look on his face and he was holding a shovel in his hand. I’ve seen a lot of kids in the neighborhood but he was new to me and my heart was racing. I kind of dismissed the issue with the car and decided to ask how he was doing, did he or his mom go to church etc. and eventually asked what was he going to do with the shovel. He replied, “I’m waiting for the snow to finish falling so that I can shovel some sidewalks. It was a great reason for having a shovel except he didn’t have the rectangular shaped shovel generally used for snow. He had a shovel generally used for digging holes and based on my “Criminal Minds” education the kind often used to hit people over the head. So I mentioned he probably had a long wait (suggesting that he may want to go inside) because although the flurries were heavy  they weren’t sticking to the ground and that might take some time. He thought about what I said and with the shovel still in his hand, went back to my inspecting car. Now my heartbeat is doing double-time so I decided to simply listen to his full inspection and comparisons and together we concluded that his mother did in fact have the same car. On one had I felt good about my attentiveness to the situation and even with my heart still racing I did invite him to church. Yet, on the other hand I felt silly and embarrassed when I learned from others that this young man was no “criminal mind” and in fact harmless.  Not every encounter or situation is a harmless one but I realize that sometimes, it doesn’t take much to affect the actions of our heart and mind. Thank you God for I better understand the importance of what we daily put on our “lamp stand,” and the effect we sometimes experience when we give room on that lamp stand for things that do not belong.

Is a lamp brought in to be put under the bushel basket, or under the bed, and not on the lamp stand? Mark 4:21-34   Be careful then how you live, not as unwise people but as wise… Ephesians 5:15-16