Archive for January, 2013

Charlie Benter

Posted: January 30, 2013 in Uncategorized
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I waited patiently for the Lord;
and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry.
He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay,
and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings.
Psalm 40:1-2

His name was Charlie Benter. That’s a name I’ll never forget. He was a customer of ours that we worked for on several occasions. He was from Michigan and he was your stereotypical northerner. I live in the holy land of the south with sweet tea and grits, so I was not used to that culture. He was a little rough around the edges, but a very nice man.

A coworker and I went to work at his house for a few days and, when we arrived, we discovered that he was in bad health. His wife had recently passed and he sat in a lonely living room watching tv from a recliner. He could barely walk.

Most of the work we had to do was outside and in the basement. We spent one particular day in the basement. As the day neared an end, we were working steadily and I kept hearing a faint tapping noise. I heard it several times, but I passed it off as nothing. We finished for the day and waked upstairs to tell Mr. Benter that we were done, but he was nowhere to be found. Then we heard him calling for help.

We followed his voice and found him laying helplessly in the bathroom floor. He had fallen and wasn’t able to pull himself back up. I felt terrible. That tapping I heard was Mr. Benter beating on the floor in a desperate attempt to get our attention. We asked if we needed to call an ambulance, but all he wanted was for us to help him to his recliner. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

My coworker was a big guy. 6’4″. 240. I work out at the gym regularly and think I have a respectable amount of strength. It took ever last ounce of strength we had to move him. He couldn’t walk at all, and we had to drag him to his recliner. After what seemed like an eternity, we finally lifted him into his chair. We were all sweating and exhausted. We asked if he needed anything and he said no. We left feeling totally traumatized.

Like most Christians, I have seen my walk with The Lord go up and down. There have been times that it seemed like God was walking by my side, and others where my prayers seemed to stay below the ceiling. This was a time that I felt very close to The Lord. As the days passed, I felt the Holy Spirit urging me to go see Mr. Benter. I felt like the situation we experienced would be a great way to witness to him.

I could tell him that we are all helpless and laying on the floor of life with no hope or strength to pick ourselves up. If we send for help, The Lord will come to our rescue, and lift us up out of the miry clay. I couldn’t hear the taps on the floor, but God hears the faintest cry. It would have been so easy to witness to him, but I never went. I am not proud of that fact.

The days went by and my boss told me that Mr. Benter was in the hospital. His was a wealthy man and my boss told me stories of a Mr. Benter handing out wads of cash to everyone at the hospital. Then he told me that he had died. That shook me to the core. I can only hope that God sent another willing vessel to give the gospel to Mr. Benter. If not, he is probably in hell and his blood is on my hands.

When the Holy Spirit whispers in our ear to share the gospel with someone, we should respond right away. That person could be a step from eternity. I’m not perfect and I don’t witness like I should, but I try and be a light to those around me. Whether it’s through telling someone the gospel, or giving out a tract, I try and obey The Lord. I still have a long way to go. Charlie Benter taught me that there may not be a second chance.

Perhaps you are reading this and you don’t know The Lord as Savior. He can and will save you if you pray and ask him to. We are all born helpless sinners laying bound for hell after death, but God can reach down and pull us up. Romans 10:13 says, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” That’s all there is to it. Jesus paid for your sins when he died on Calvary. Ask Him to save you and He will.

We had great difficulty in helping Mr. Benter, but God is mighty to save. He can and will reach down in the miry clay and pit and lift you up to new life in Him.
Trust Him today.

Passing Clouds

Posted: January 23, 2013 in Uncategorized
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“For ever, O Lord,
thy word is settled in heaven.” – Psalm 119:89

I was working one day in a gas station parking lot to repair some inoperative pole lights. We have various methods for working on these type of light fixtures. Depending on the height of the pole, we usually rent some sort of a motorized lift.

In this particular case, the poles were not very high, so I decided to use my extension ladder to reach the light. This is not the safest way, so I wouldn’t recommend it. I tend to be a little adventurous at work and I try to complete the job as efficiently and with as little cost as possible. Lifts are expensive to rent.

I climbed the ladder, removed the light fixture’s cover and began to work. It was a beautiful day filled with blue skies and white puffy clouds, and, as I was working, my eyes drifted to the clouds. As I watched the clouds pass by, I suddenly felt dizzy and began to loose my balance. My heart jumped into my throat as the thought of falling overwhelmed me.

Then, I focused my eyes on the light. I was able to steady myself and regain my balance. It took focusing on a stable object to help me regain my footing.

This world is an ever changing mixture of opinions and philosophies. Entire television shows are devoted to debating the latest political topics. Social media provides a stage for millions to voice their thoughts and opinions on every subject under the sun. The only certainty in this world is that nothing is for certain.

Scientists, politicians, movies stars, and many others tell us how we must think and feel, and others say that there is no absolute truth. “If it feels good, do it.” “Love whoever you want to. ” “It’s a woman’s choice.” And on and on it goes.

God said that His Word was forever settled in Heaven. That’s a comforting thought.

It’s high time we got our eyes off the world and on the Word. Every day another Christian looses their balance and falls for the schemes of the world. We must not allow the passing clouds of opinion to catch our gaze.

Is your world unstable today? Do you need to regain your footing? Turn your eyes upon Jesus and his eternal unchanging Word.

Jesus Preached from a Boat

Posted: January 18, 2013 in Uncategorized

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” And it came to pass, that, as the people pressed upon him to hear the word of God, he stood by the lake of Gennesaret,

And saw two ships standing by the lake: but the fishermen were gone out of them, and were washing their nets.

And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon’s, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship.”

Luke 5:1-3

I arrived at work one morning and I was handed my work order for the day. I was pleased to see it was for a job at a friend of mine’s house named David. We had become acquainted at a local mega church where we did a lot of electrical work. He used to be the facilities manager but was no longer working there. It had been a long time since I had seen him.

One of the perks of my job is that I meet a lot of nice and interesting people and David was one of them. He was a great guy to work for. He used to call and say that he had “gravy” work for us, but we would wind up working there for days. It was one of my favorite places to work.

David had recently suffered from a stroke and was forced to retire. I think it was hard to go from managing a multimillion dollar facility to staying at home all day, but this was where the Lord placed him. He and his wife were going to sell their house and, during the negotiations, it was discovered that the house had aluminum wiring. That’s where I came in. I was there to replace all the switches and outlets with aluminum compatible devices.

David followed me around as I worked and helped as much as he could. He would remove the wall plates ahead of me and replace them when I was done. We talked a lot during this time. We reminisced about various projects we completed at the church. We talked about how crazy it was working for a church.

The last day I worked at David’s house, he cooked us some bratwursts on the grill. We sat and talked and the subject turned back to the mega church where he had worked. We talked about the multimillion dollar sanctuary and how no expense was spared during its construction. The sound system alone cost a million. The heating and air system was placed in another part of the building and giant mufflers were installed on the vents to make the sanctuary quiet as possible. The place is a sight to behold.

Then David spoke with me honestly and said that, in some ways, it bothered him that all this money was spent on what was just a building. We talked of how people were lost and suffering all around the world, and millions were spent on a building instead. Then he said something to me that I’ll never forget. It was brilliant in its simplicity. He said, “Jesus preached from a boat.”

How true that is. We are so blessed in America. Our sanctuaries are built to honor God with padded pews, fancy paint jobs, expensive sound systems, projectors and the list goes on and on. Some cathedrals have gold lined walls and, yet, Jesus preached from a boat. We worship and sing in the comfort of air conditioned rooms where we are shielded from the weather, yet, Jesus preached from a boat.

The gospel can be declared anywhere. Whether it be spoken from behind an expensive pulpit or in the jail downtown, it’s still the gospel. Jesus preached from a boat.

I’ve never been to Bible college, but the Lord has been my professor for a long time. He teaches me lessons in various ways and, that day, He chose a retired facilities manager to show me that the gospel is the gospel, no matter where it’s preached.

“In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths” Proverbs 3:6

I arrived at the job site with a truck load of assorted parts and 33 pages of blueprints. We had been hired to install some equipment at a local distribution center. I had never seen most of the parts that were sent to us and I had no clue how to install them. It was boxes and boxes of camera, motion detectors, and door lock controls. I was scratching my head and trying to figure everything out. I am an electrician and I have very little experience with security systems.

It’s an old saying, “when all else fails, read the instructions.” I tend to subscribe to that philosophy, but, in this case, I was so lost that I had no choice but to consult the blueprints. After four hours of studying the blueprints and a long lunch break to think it over, I was beginning to get an idea of what needed to be done. In the following week, I had to consult the blueprints many more times to make sure that I was handling everything properly. We finally finished the job, and, by the grace of God, everything worked!

In life, we make many of our decisions based on the knowledge we have. We take the “when all else fails” approach and we only go to God if we absolutely have to. But there are times that come that are so perplexing that don’t know what to do. Life sends us a truck load of assorted problems and situations and we are not sure how it all fits together. We are so lost and confused that we need some blueprints for life.

God has provided the blueprints we need in His Word and through prayer. His Word says, “In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” All we need is to just acknowledge God and He has promised to guide us. I try and make this a constant practice in my life. Each day I pray over the jobs that I work on and I ask God to bless them. I ask God for guidance in purchases I make and every aspect of my life. I have never asked God for guidance and had the situation turn out bad. God blesses every time

Maybe you’ve recently had a truck load of problems come your way. Maybe you have lost your job. Maybe you are having marriage problems. Maybe you have lost a loved one. Consult the blueprints of God and He will guide you and bless you.

Darkness and light

Posted: January 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

“This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.” – 1 John 1:5-8

It inevitably happens. I work at a business or office where they have a lot of lights out and, when I’m through upgrading the lights, the reaction is always the same. “The lights are too bright!”
The people working in these place had become used to the lack of light. Over time, the bulbs became less efficient and the light fixtures had worn out. Day by day the people had worked and the light had diminished more and more. Before they knew it, they were half way in the dark and they didn’t notice.
One by one I repair the lights and the room becomes brighter and brighter. “We need sunglasses!” “Now we’re going to have to clean up around here!” And the comments go on and on.
And so it goes in our walk with God. At salvation, the light was as bright as the noon day sun and our path was clearly illuminated. But, as time goes by, we let the light dim without even noticing it. A besetting sin, time out of God’s Word, and soon we walk in darkness.
Let in the light of God’s Word and it will reveal the dark and dirty places of your heart. The bright light may bring discomfort at first, but soon you will have joy in a fully lighted path.

Well, here goes. This is my first try at a blog. I’m not sure what I’m doing, so I don’t know how this will turn out. This post will serve to explain purpose of my blog.
Years ago, I felt as though The Lord was calling me to preach, but, so far, The Lord has chosen to keep me in a secular occupation. I pursued going into the ministry many times, but God always closed the door. It seemed like I would always be “just an electrician.”
I struggled with this for years, wondering why The Lord kept me out of “the ministry.” I was intimidated by people in “the ministry” who I felt looked down on me for being “just an electrician.” Well, through many circumstances and lessons from The Lord, I learned that, if you are Christian, you are in the ministry. We are all to be a light to those in our circle of influence. There are people out there that those in the “ministry” could never reach, but you and I can. Don’t take me wrong. God has a special purpose for those in “full time ministry”, but that shouldn’t make the rest of us feel less used of God.
So, if you are a plumber, carpenter, lawyer, or whatever secular occupation there is, God can and will use you, if you let Him. I am in the ministry. I am called of God to be an electrician. This blog will be a platform to express the thoughts and lessons God lays on my heart as I work from day to day. I call it “electric theology.”