May 18, 2010

Thermostat or Thermometer?

The temperatures had been warmer than usual in Minnesota this spring and it appears that we are around one and one half months ahead of the normal growing season. But last week, we had a small cold spell. During this time last week, my boiler came on because of a little devise I have in my home called a thermostat. Like a night watchman, it waits to tell the boiler when it needs to be on or off. The thermostat gets a reading on what is going on in the environment around it and changes things.  

A thermostat regulates the temperature in the room. If the room is cold, the thermostat calls for change to the boiler until it reaches the desired temperature. If the room is too warm, it can turn on the air conditioner to cool things down.  

I have another watchman in my house called a thermometer. Its job is to simply report what the temperature is and do nothing about it. In fact, it doesn’t even tell the boiler anything. All the thermometer really does is give a report; nothing else. 

Two watchmen in the same house: One senses changes in the environment and responds to make changes. The other simply reports and does nothing else to make a difference. 

So which “watchman” do you tend to be? When you see problems in the world around you do you simply report them or do you try to do what you can to make a difference? In this “gripe-and-complain” society, we tend to like, or get used to listening to thermometers. Thermostats tend to make us uncomfortable because they challenge us to make a difference. 

Are you part of the problem or part of the solution? It isn’t enough to see and report; there are times when we need to do something to solve the problem. But often times we simply report with no real wisdom as to what is really going on. 

Speaking to the religious leaders in His day, Jesus said to them;, "When it is evening you say, 'It will be fair weather, for the sky is red'; 3 and in the morning, 'It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.' Hypocrites! You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times.” (Matthew 16:2-3)    

Jesus came into this world not as a thermometer but as a thermostat. He came, He saw, He conquered all. He made a radical difference to the world around Him that are still affecting the world today.  

The thermometers of this world are simply reporting many things today. I believe that Jesus is calling for some more thermostats to make a difference in the world around them.  

Matthew 9:35-38 “Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. 36 But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. 37 Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. 38 Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest."   

Asleep In The Light by Keith Green

Do you see, do you see, all the people sinking down,
Don't you care, don't you care, are you gonna let them drown,
How can you be so numb, not to care if they come,
You close your eyes and pretend the job's done.

Oh Bless me Lord, bless me Lord, you know it's all I ever hear,
No one aches, no one hurts, no one even sheds one tear,
But He cries, He weeps, He bleeds, and He cares for your needs,
And you just lay back and keep soaking it in, oh, can't you see it's such sin?

Cause He brings people to your door,
And you turn them away, as you smile and say,
God bless you, be at peace, and all Heaven just weeps,
Cause Jesus came to your door, you've left Him out on the streets.

Open up, open up, and give yourself away,
You've seen the need, you hear the cry, so how can you delay,
God's calling and you're the one, but like Jonah you run,
He's told you to speak, but you keep holding it in,
Oh, can't you see it's such sin.

The world is sleeping in the dark,
That the church can't fight, cause it's asleep in the light,
How can you be so dead, when you've been so well fed,
Jesus rose from the grave, and you, you can't even get out of bed,
Oh, Jesus rose from the dead, come on, get out of your bed.

How can you be so numb, not to care if they come,
You close your eyes and pretend the job's done,
You close your eyes and pretend the job's done,
Don't close your eyes, don't pretend the job's done.
Come away, come away, come away with Me, My love,
Come away, from this mess, come away with Me, My love.

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