Thursday 31 January 2019

The Medium is the Message!

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After yesterday's quote from Malcolm McLuhan, about humans not having 'Earlids', I stumbled across another quote of his and thought it is worth thinking about.

“In Jesus Christ, there is no distance or separation between the medium and the message: it is the one case where we can say that the medium and the message are fully one and the same.”
― Marshall McLuhan 

The well known phrase, "The Medium is the Message", comes from McLuhan and so when you take his quote (above) into consideration we come to a greater understanding of what he is getting at. In simple, he is implying that "how" we deliver a message (and in what manner) determines how people receive that message. It is all in the "way" we communicate that a message is received.

So, when it comes to the person of Jesus, I believe that he always spoke with a heart of love, grace and mercy. And when he communicated, people could sense his TRUE HEART and so they received his message in that way. His medium of communication was 'love' and so was his content. Love was at the heart of all he did and said.

What do you think? I would love to hear from you....

1 John 4:16 - And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

Living in Grace

Wednesday 30 January 2019

We have no Earlids!

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Marshall McLuhan makes an unusual observation about our ears and how they relate to 'hearing' and 'listening.' In his comments he states the obvious that God never created any 'earlids' for humans. We have eyelids to protect our eyes and to help us 'block out' anything visual, but we can't do the same with our ears.

"We hear sounds from everywhere, without ever having to focus.
Sounds come from “above,” from “below,” from in “front” of us, from “behind” us, from our “right,” from our “left.” We can‘t shut out sound automatically. We simply are not equipped with earlids."

The reason I share this with us today is because there is a profound difference between 'hearing' and 'listening.' Barring those who are hearing-impaired, most people will 'hear' things, but tune out the sounds they don't want to engage with. However, when there are sounds we like or are prepared to focus on, then we start to listen more attentively.  

This principle then applies to our Christian faith too. We can't use the excuse that we couldn't receive God's message, because our 'earlids' blocked it out. That is a poor and unfounded excuse. What tends to happen is that we choose to receive some messages from God and then ignore those that don't seem nice. Essentially we are in danger of having Selective Spiritual Hearing!

Proverbs 8:32-35 -
Listen to my instruction and be wise;
    do not disregard it.

Blessed are those who listen to me,
    watching daily at my doors,
    waiting at my doorway.

For those who find me find life
    and receive favor from the Lord.

Living in Grace

Tuesday 29 January 2019

For a reason

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Here is a moving prayer. May it help you and encourage you. Think and meditate on the words in the prayer, but drink deeply from what the Spirit reveals to you through the prayer.

"God has created me to do him some definite service.
He has committed some work to me, 
which he has not committed to another.
I have my mission.
I am a bond of connection between persons.
He has not created me for naught.
I shall do good.
I shall do his work.
I shall be a preacher of truth in my own place,
while not intending it, 
if I but keep his commandments.
Therefore will I trust him.
Whatever I am, I can never be thrown away.
He has nothing in vain.
The Lord knows what he is about." - John Henry Newman

Exodus 9:16 - But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth

Living in Grace

Monday 28 January 2019


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I was listening to a devotion from Our Daily Bread this morning, when I was struck by a word in the Scripture reading. In fact, the word was unrelated to the overall theme of the devotion, but it stopped me in my tracks. It was the word UNLESS.

¨       Psalm 94:17 - Unless the Lord had given me help, I would soon have dwelt in the silence of death.

In my spirit I felt a nudge from the Lord and so I dwelt on this word for a little while.What could this word mean for me today?

Unless I train for the marathon I won’t make the distance?!.
Unless I where a hat in the sun, my head will get sun burnt!
Unless I leave time for the bad traffic, I am going to arrive late to my appointment.

Of course, these are quite frivolous things in some ways, but there are a lot of very important things to also consider:

Unless …. I spend time in the WORD, I am going to lose touch with Jesus
Unless …. I fellowship regularly, I will lose touch with God’s people
Unless….. I spend time with my family, we will all grow apart
UNLESS …. (you fill in the gap for you)

There are a few other times that the Bible contains this word 'Unless.' Take a look at these two examples and see if there is anything for you in these verses.
Psalm 127:1 - Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labour in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain.

¨        John 15:4 - Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.

May the Lord helps us reflect on this word for us today.
Living in Grace

Sunday 27 January 2019


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At some point David felt as if there were no LOYAL people left in the world around him. He lamented: 

"Help, Lord, for no one is faithful anymore; those who are loyal have vanished from the human race." (Psalm 12:1)

Of course, there were still many faithful and loyal people in his community - he just needed to be made aware of who they were. I think the same applies in our time. There are many good people out there and God is still calling each one of us to remain Faithful and Loyal to the Gospel and to each other. The following quote speaks volumes: 

"Don’t' waste your time waiting and longing for large opportunities which may never come. But faithfully handle the little things that are always claiming your attention." - F.B. Meyer

Look for opportunities to show your faithfulness today.

Living in Grace

Thursday 24 January 2019

Don't you know me?

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Many of us want to know what God is like? We think that if we could just get a handle on God, then it would make our faith a little easier and we would be much more committed to the cause. 

Philip was having a conversation with Jesus about some important matters, when Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? (John 14:9)

For me, this reveals a key truth. If we want to know what God is like, then we can begin by reading about Jesus. The life, character, words and person of Jesus will give us the clearest image of the Eternal God. Of course we can start by opening up a Bible and starting in the Gospels - that is the best place to begin.

Let us stop looking for signs of God that may not appear and instead study the ones that are right in front of us.

Living in Grace

Wednesday 23 January 2019

In his hands

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"Father-like He tends and spares us;
Well our feeble frame He knows.
In His hands He gently bears us,
Rescues us from all our foes.
Praise Him ! Praise Him !
Widely as His mercy flows." -
Praise my Soul

There are so many things that come out of this verse from the popular Hymn, Praise my Soul. 

  1. We are reminded that God is like a parent, tending to our weaknesses and needs.
  2. God knows our frailty and he gently holds us in his huge Hands.
  3. Although we still have troubles in life, God rescues us from the biggest foe of all - death. 
  4. God's mercies are wide and never ending.

Reflect on these incredible thoughts today. Picture yourself in the hands of God.

John 10:29 - My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.

Living in Grace