Saturday, May 31, 2008

Whoever Has Ears to Hear...

Recently I changed my blog title from "Collin Packer's Blog" to "Sightings, Sounds, and Sniffs of the Kingdom." While I thought my old title got the point across, I thought a little more creativity might be worth my time.

I like the new title. I believe God is still very much at work in the world today. Scripture does not describe our God as one who created the world only to let it spin without his hands at work in the world. From the beginning, God has remained among his people. He always seems to show up in different ways though. For instance, off the top of my head I can remember God showing up as a gardener, a bush on fire, a cloud, a pillar of fire, a group of strangers, a presence among the Tabernacle, and as the God-man (Jesus). Apart from these specific instances, he also shows up in a variety of other ways. He sends manna and quail for the Israelites, fire down on the altar on Mt. Carmel, tongues of fire on the heads of several people at Pentecost, etc. Yet at other times, he shows up in a whisper to Elijah or he remains silent for hundreds of years. It's really all a mystery to me.

Signs of God continue to show up in all of our lives. At times, he is easily sensed through miraculous healings. At other times, we pray to him and wonder why he never chooses to show up. I believe if we are honest, we have all sensed God's obvious presence in our lives and sensed that he has completely forsaken us at other times.

In Mark 4, Jesus says to the Twelve, "You've been given insight into God's kingdom - you know how it works."

For those of us who have committed our lives to Christ and become transformed into his image, God has given us insight into the kingdom. As we live in the world, we must be committed to always looking for sightings, sounds, and sniffs of the kingdom in our own lives. At times, we will be amazed by God's kingdom when we praise God in a worship assembly. At other times, we will be amazed at the way God shares his kingdom through secular movies and music where we might expect never to find glimpses of his reign.

God is at work in the world! We are his representatives and ambassadors to people who seek him without even knowing the object of their pursuit. As detectives of the reign of God in the world, may we all begin to sense the ways he is active in our lives.

How have you seen, heard, or smelled the kingdom this week?


Gus said...

I caught a little of the Annual Academy of Country Music Awards a couple of weeks ago, and tuned in just in time to hear George Strait sing "I Saw God Today" -- that was a "sound" of God, especially the phrase "His fingerprints are everywhere." Yes indeed!When you get here, Collin, every day (well, almost every day) you can open your office blinds, look west and see, not just his fingerprints, but the work of his mighty hands! That view is the "sighting" of God. The view is across the Chapel Hill cemetary, which will one day errupt with resurrection - that'll be some sighting!But I am most amazed at the "sniffs" -- the little, minute, intricate, daily things of God -- details only he could design. And especially the "soul work" he does -- the transformations, the redemptions, the small steps toward his son, which eventually culminate in re-birth ... forever!By the way, I heard him last night on the phone ... really! In the small, sweet voice of my youngest granddaughter, Kelsie, he said, "I love you, Papa." I don't need any more.Blessings from the office next to yours,Gus at Littleton

Collin Packer said...

Gus, thanks so much for your testimony of God's presence in your life. He is all around us we just have to open our senses to his work. Imagine what would change we were always aware of God's movement in the world. How would that change our lives? Where would we spend our time?

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure it's "WhoMever" and this "sniffs" a bit like Pantheism to me.