Friday, September 13, 2013

A Lesson from Tombstone

I'm sitting on my couch, watching Tombstone right now... I stinking love this movie... at the moment, we find Wyatt Earp walking into the Oriental for the first time, trying to get himself a stake in the house take. As he walks in, he purchases a cigar from the owner/operator of the establishment. The owner identifies himself, and Wyatt returns the gesture by telling Milt that he is Wyatt Earp. Milt just chuckles to himself in disbelief as Wyatt smiles, an unrecognized hero.
Wyatt then confronts the house dealer, who is bullying the few gamblers who wander into the room, managing to defeat the man with mostly words... the dealer, armed with a shotgun then approaches Wyatt on the street (still not recognizing who the man is), as he begins to shoulder the gun, he is called out by Doc, Wyatt's oldest friend. It is only after Doc identifies Wyatt in front of this man that the dealer trembles and backs down.

It strikes me this morning, as I am watching, how often we fail to recognize the presence of Jesus in much the same way. We struggle in our circumstances, we get impatient, wary, and frustrated that our life is not going down the path we would choose. We even get a glimpse, a direct introduction, that perhaps our situation is coming from God, that He is trying to help bring us through something. But even still, we watch skeptically, and when we again grow tired of waiting on God's timing, and trusting his sovereign grace, we begin to allow ourselves to elevate to anger, and wish to take the matter into our own hands. At times we only stop when someone else clearly shouts a warning to us and allows us to see that the object of our frustration is the work of God in our lives. And at that, we must choose our course to either drop our weapon and yield to His will, or continue to press through and accept the consequence of our deeds.

I am in a season of many trials, being made to wait through many things. Very few, if any, of these trials are even all that unpleasant... it is much more of a knowledge that on the other side of these trials lays a much different, and much better future for me, and my family. I am blessed to have the support of my family as I am moved through these times, and at times I am better at resting in the grace and sufficiency of God... but at times I start to rise up again, and threaten to attempt to retake control over circumstance. I forget the promises of scripture... and, sadly, at times it is only when I am on the edge of taking an ill-advised shot that someone is able to break my focus and remind me of the power of God's word and the effectual grace of His will.

These moments bring me back to remembering the promise found in Paul's words to the church at Ephesus:
        For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12

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