Christmas Stockings

The Christmas stockings were hung with care

Some were extraordinarily beautiful, others ordinarily fair

Some were hung by the chimney

Others were hung on the tree

Some were made with bright colors

While others must’ve been bought for a dollar

Some had lights that shined so bright

Others even glowed in the dark of night

Some had glitter that sparkled from time to time

None of these comes close to describing mine

On my wife’s she had written a bible verse

One of my daughters had Santa on hers

Another daughter made hers with good cheer

While another finished hers by writing the year

When we were all done we were quite pleased

Then we joined hands and prayed for the least of these

But back to the stockings galore

There’s so much to say, so much more

Some had to be at least three feet long

When those are filled, I hope the nail is strong

Some are just a little bigger than my foot

For mine, I gave Santa a list, in case he needed my input

Some are made with love, paint, and glue

Some are quite fantastic while others have a mistake or two

Some were stitched and crocheted with extreme care

Others looked like they came out of the drawer by your underwear

Some had stickers of Santa and Rudolph and such

Others had just a name, but that was enough

On that Christmas morning, I learned a thing or two

From these Christmas stockings and I’d like to share with you

It doesn’t matter what the outside is

Because there is one thing I know and it’s this

It doesn’t matter what’s on the outside

Because the outside is just a brilliant disguise

What matters the most the outside tries to hide

What really matters is what’s on the inside

Image result for bible verses on whats on the inside

GPS

March 29, 2015, a driver following his GPS drives his SUV off  a ramp to a demolished bridge in East Chicago, Indiana. His wife died in the accident. The road was marked with orange barrels and signs saying road closed.

In 2009, a driver in West Yorkshire, England followed his GPS up a steep “road” that continued to narrow until he stopped- on the edge of a cliff with his car dangling over the edge. The driver got out safely and said he trusted the GPS to get him where he needed to go.

In 2011, three women in Bellevue, Washington blindly followed their GPS down a boat ramp and into a lake. All three got out safely but the car was submerged in the lake.

In 2011 in East Brunswick, New Jersey a driver came to a T instersection. His only choices were to go left or right. Instead he followed his GPS and went straight, straight over a curb and into a house.

These are just a few of the hundreds of articles out there about people blindly following their GPS. They don’t trust their own eyes, common sense, or warning signs. I won’t even begin to tell the stories of crashes cause by distracted drivers that were looking at their GPS instead of the road right in front of them, totally ignoring stopped cars, people crossing the street, stop lights and stop signs.

I know my GPS has many times told me to turn the wrong way on a one way street. Many times it has taken me off a main freeway onto a bunch of slow side streets just to put me right back on the freeway a few miles later. I could’ve saved so much time if I followed my common sense but I was in a new state and I didn’t know. I know now and when I go there and the GPS says to get off, I stay on the freeway. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times it will tell me there is a long delay ahead and I never see the delay. Did it get cleared up in the fifteen minutes for me to get there or what happened? Only the GPS knows I guess.

Did you laugh when you read these stories? Did you say I can’t believe they would do that? Did you say use some common sense people? Has anything like this happened to you? I ask, what about you?  Do you use your GPS wisely? I’m not talking about the man-made GPS. I am talking about the GPS, God Positioning System, that God has given all of us.

How many times are we going through our lives and we do something we know we shouldn’t and we hear that little voice in our head saying don’t do this. This is wrong – and we do it anyway. How many times do we do it again when we know what a bad decision it was the first time. We simply ignore the GPS.

How many times has God asked you to talk about your faith, spread the Word, make disciples and we ignore God and keep quiet. I know I have done this more times than I would like to admit to. Fear. God are you sure? You want me to go clear over there to the other side of the room and talk to someone. Look at all those people in between us. By the time I get over there they will be gone anyway. We unplug the GPS.

Could you imagine being Abraham? I’m not even talking about sacrificing your own child here, that’s for another story. I’m talking about if God said “hey you, gather your things and head out. I won’t tell you where you are going or for how long you will travel but just go, and I will lead you.” Would you do that?

What about Moses? After wandering the desert for forty years God says 

at which Moses replied,

We all say who am I God? Why should I go? Can’t you send someone else?

What about Jonah?

He was swallowed by a giant fish then he was given a second chance.

What about Noah? He could’ve said no God, people will think I am crazy building an ark. What if he didn’t build it to God’s specific directions.

What about Jesus? Jesus was betrayed by a close friend, falsely arrested, accused, tempted, condemned, beaten until almost dead, crucified on a cross, and died alone and deserted by most of His followers. Yet He was never lost!

What about you? Are you following where God is asking you to go? If you head that direction but then realize the road is full of potholes and obstacles, do you turn around or keep going forward? Do you tell yourself you know a better way even though God is telling you to go a different way? I truly believe that sometimes God will have us crash into a building if that’s what it takes to get our attention. Sometimes He will have us hit rock bottom just to get us to ask Him for help.

God has given each of us an inner compass. A sense of right and wrong. Morals. Some of us choose to ignore these things and do what we want to do. Some of us will listen to the man-made GPS and not the God made GPS. Some of us choose to sit on the couch and not go anywhere.

When you are lost don’t be afraid to ask for help. When you run into an obstacle, don’t be afraid to go through it. When someone is telling you to go in the wrong direction, don’t be afraid to ask what would Jesus do? We can’t live this life living blindly. God has given us a purpose and a direction. He has also given us free choice to follow our ways or His ways. What GPS will you follow?

How easy it is for us to follow this world and its directions but not God’s directions. God doesn’t see only where you are at, He knows where you are going.

I Will Follow by Chris Tomlin – 

Move In The Right Direction by Gossip –  

You’ve Got A Plan by Karysn Robb- 

Circles by Anthem Lights – 

Put It In Drive by Tony Carter – 

Messengers by Lecrae (feat For King & Country) – 

Soul On Fire by Third Day – 

A Pep Talk from Kid President – 

Alive and Running by Kristian Stanfill – 

Running Out of Air by Rekoncyle –

Running In Circles by United Pursuit Band – 

I’m Running by Mary Mary – 

Keep Running by Satellites and Sirens – 

Running Away by Seventh Day Slumber –