Friday, March 12, 2010

Stink Bug Theology

Matthew 6:34: "Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes. (The Message)

In this neck of the woods we have a common visitor known as the stink bug. These are nasty little creatures about the size of your fingernail, brownish, and the shape of a shield. These particularly ugly critters are loud when they buzz around – we’re talking helicopter dive-bombing you loud! And if you should catch one and smoosh it, they emit an enormously foul stench – hence, the name “stink” bug. While I’m no theologian or scholar, I am sure these creepy crawlers showed up on the scene three seconds after Eve bit that apple – a direct creation/result of the Fall (right up there with war, pestilence, wrinkles and cellulite)!

So the other day I was getting ready for work, puttering around in my semi-comatose early morning state, not yet having had my three cups of tea to get me going. I grabbed my blow dryer, went to plug it in and… what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a creepy crawly disgusting stink bug parked directly over the outlet. He was totally blocking the path of my dryer plug. This bad boy was huge - the size of Milwaukee! And let me tell you, nothing wakes you up as quickly as stumbling upon the stealth attack of a stink bug on your outlet first thing in the morning! I ran screaming for the nearest tissue, plucked said evil visitor from my outlet, and sent him onto glory with a dramatic FLUSH! (My apologies to all animal rights friends out there). Needless to say, I still get the “willies” when I think of the incident.

I did a bit of research and found that stink bugs don’t generally bite, but they can cause damage to leaves, flowers, fruit and crops. They are attracted to light/warmth, will work their way into a home (under siding, into soffits, under roof shingles, etc.), and you can wind up with an infestation problem.

How does this relate to anything? Well, I got to thinking… stink bugs are a lot like those commonplace little problems and worries we have so often in life. They silently work their way into our thoughts throughout the day and night, destroying our peace. Have you ever had worries come flooding into your mind when you’re trying to pray? Ever have angst keep you up at night? Just like that stink bug on my outlet, worries can block us from connecting to our Power Source. We get so focused on them (and unfocused on God) that pretty soon those anxieties have eaten away at us, and we’re left with a ruined, fruitless day. Like an infestation, worry piles upon worry, anxiety upon anxiety and as Joyce Meyer calls it, we’re left with “stinkin’ thinking”! Now while I don’t recommend that you run screaming for your nearest tissue, I would suggest running to your Bible, and finding comfort and peace in the verses of His Word. Take all those foul troubles in prayer to the Lord – leave them all with Him.

Yeah, the junk of daily life often stinks.. but you don’t have to deal with it alone. Just hold your nose with one hand, grab those troubles with the other, and leave them with God – let Him be your “Spiritual Exterminator”!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Isaiah 33:6 “He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure.”

Today I was watching a segment of Life Today featuring a teaching by Beth Moore discussing a renewed mind. I highly recommend it!

She mentioned the verse in Isaiah above, and said one translation worded the beginning of the verse as “He’s [the Lord] my constant source of stability.” I looked up the word stability online and in my Hebrew-Greek Key Word Study Bible and Word Study Dictionary. I found the definition was from the transliterated Hebrew word which meant “firmness, fidelity, steadfastness, and steadiness”. I also found the word origin meant “trustworthiness, faithfulness, or dependability”.

I’ve been going through some turbulent times lately that have just put me in a tailspin and taken me to the edge of a meltdown. But God has been faithful. The world spun around me as if I were encircled in a hurricane, but I found that if I kept my feet firm/anchored on His truth and His promises, and kept my eyes on Him (Hebrews 12:1-2), there was peace in the midst of the storm.

Please understand I am NOT saying I am “Miss Stable” or super-sanctified or anything like that – I have fallen on my face (a lot) in recent days and come up muddy, bruised and one big shameful mess. What I am saying is, in spite of all that, God has been there for me, He has been my Rock, the One Who listens, Who always loves me, comforts me, supports me… and the One and Only Who in all of life remains forever my true source of stability. Like the old hymn says, “On Christ the Solid Rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand… all other ground is sinking sand.”

Are you about to give up? Feeling like you can’t take one more thing or you will just lose what little is left of your mind? Go to God and tell Him. Yell, scream, cry… whisper… or just be silent before Him letting your tears speak the words your heart is too crushed and tired to say. Hang on to Him when you can no longer hang onto anything/anyone else – He will be your stability, when nothing else makes sense. Depend on Him, trust Him and He will do this for you. Hang onto Him for dear life.