I Am Concerned

Today’s Journey Through the Bible Readings
Leviticus 1-3; Matthew 24:1-28

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32 “Learn this parable from the fig tree. After its branch becomes tender and it sprouts new leaves, you know that summer is near. 33 In the same way, when you see all these things, you know that the Human One is near, at the door. 34 I assure you that this generation won’t pass away until all these things happen. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will certainly not pass away (Matthew 24:32-35, Common English Bible).

I am concerned. I have memories as a kid with the Boy Scouts going along Highway 90 in Southwest Houston picking up litter. I am concerned. When in the Navy I remember seeing a film from petroleum products across miles of ocean. I am concerned. When it is clear the polar ice caps are melting and endangered polar bears are drowning because they can’t climb out of the water onto the ice. I am concerned. I am concerned about the cloud of air pollution that regularly sits over the City of Houston.

Yes, I am concerned. I am concerned about all these things and more. I fail to understand how, when we see all these things happening, we can say there are no problems in our environment. I am concerned that we seem to become the proverbial ostrich with our heads in the sand. Still, these are not my greatest concern.

Verse 35 of our lesson from Matthew there are two things that are clear. We have them in Jesus’ words. First, this world will pass away. Will it be those things I mentioned concern me that bring the end to this world? God didn’t put me in charge of that department. Jesus clearly says no one knows when but I think the circumstances could be included with that. And, I think we have a responsibility to be stewards of the planet, including the environment. Could God hold us responsible for our lack of leadership? I don’t think I want to find out. We might want to rethink our poor stewardship of God’s creation.

But, these environmental issues are not what concerns me most. Actually, it is in the last half of verse 35. Jesus says, “But my words certainly will not pass away.” You might ask, “Keith, why does this concern you? It sounds like a good thing, God’s word will not pass away.” Well, that God’s word will not pass away also would mean it isn’t going away. Friends, we don’t do so well in sharing that word in the world around us. We, who are charged with making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world, don’t act like we have responsibility at all.

But, we are all still here. That means heaven and earth have not yet passed away. We believers still have time to share Jesus’ words with the world. That my friends is a really good thing.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,
Keith

Copyright 2018, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

 

Author:

Spirita Spiro (Esperanza for "Spirit's Breath) is rather new in my life. But the blog is not. I began writing a blog several years ago. It lived under the title, "The Pastor Ponders." Over the years I have tried several different names and "The Pastor Ponders" always seemed to fit best. I am trying again with Spirita Spiro. For 27 years I was a full-time pastor in the United Methodist Church. This year, August 2018, I semi-retired (I can't actually retire quite yet) and began teaching social studies. It is something I have always wanted to do and if I was going to do this, I needed to make it sooner rather than later. So, I made the move. I thought with the career change there also needed to be a name change to the blog and other things, such as spiritual direction. Spirita Spiro is my attempt to share some of my thoughts. I often share what I am thinking with my dog "Bishop," but he keeps his thoughts to himself. He will even go to sleep sometimes while I am sharing my thoughts with him. The truth is, if it doesn't involve getting his ears scratched, his belly rubbed or some kind of treat, he really doesn't care. I will say this for him, he never argues with me or tells me I am wrong. So, I decided to share some of my thoughts with whoever might come across this blog in their ramblings around the Internet. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 27 years as a full-time United Methodist pastor. Most recently I served as pastor of First United Methodist Church in Sweeny, Texas. I have also served United Methodist congregations throughout East Texas including rural Madison County (Elwood UMC), Lovelady (First UMC) and Kennard (Center Hill UMC), Canton (First UMC), rural Smith County (Mt. Sylvan UMC and Union Chapel UMC), Grapeland (First UMC), Tyler (Pleasant Retreat UMC), Santa Fe (Aldersgate UMC), Freeport (First UMC) and Oyster Creek (Oyster Creek UMC), Diboll (First UMC), and now Sweeny (First UMC). My wife Cindy and I have been married for over 40 years. We have two grown sons. Wayne and his wife Nikki and all our grandsons (Kaleb, Noah, and Jaxon) live in Southern California. Christopher and his wife Morgan and both our granddaughters (Jenna and Natalie) live in Tyler Texas. I enjoy preaching and all aspects of preaching from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading, playing the guitar as well as a bit of drawing. I have spent quite a bit of time over the past two years working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I sing bass with a local barbershop chorus called The Coastalaires. I have also recently begun doing a little wood carving. I also enjoy playing with Bishop, something he likes a great deal better than listening to my thoughts. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, specializing in Microcomputers from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, Texas, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. When I was a student at Carolina, the school was in Iron Station North Carolina. They have since relocated to Manassas Virginia (Yeah, go figure, a school named Carolina geographically in Virginia). This blog is mostly devotional writing, but there are other things here too. Just about every week I will either post my sermon manuscript or a video of the worship service. On occasion, I will post something I see in society. Occasionally I write a short story, a poem, or a song and will post it here too. I will say this, my motivations for writing this blog are really selfish. I write it to get what I am thinking out of my head and onto something a bit more permanent. They say, after all, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. And, should you desire, you can one-up Bishop and actually tell me what you think. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. With Joy and Thankfulness, Keith Sweeny, Texas May 2018

One thought on “I Am Concerned

  1. How timely for me. Yesterday my daughter in law and I were conversing about sharing God’s word. She stated how amazed she is with her 8 yr old son Wade. He doesn’t hesitate to ask his friends and new kids he meets, if they have asked Jesus into their hearts. Such a babe to think of others salvation.

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