It’s good to be back in a pattern of weather that somewhat simulates four seasons. Even though we experienced a mild winter, that’s why I live here, the more-than-welcome rain and some rather blustery cold north winds made it feel more normal for this part of the country. With the continuing rounds of rain coming our way, it looks like spring will be a beautiful season this year.
I’m glad because personally I was getting sort of tired of 20 shades of brown. The winter rains have also put us back into some forgotten patterns of nature. It’s sort of like belonging to a “something” of the month club. You put in a request of what you would like, but you generally get sent what there is an abundance of. If you belong to a movie of the month/week club, it’s rare you receive what you really want to watch in a movie. The same with books, cookies, candies, candles, so on and so on.
Well, in South Texas, when we’re in a “normal” weather situation, with tongue-in-cheek, I sometimes think I belong to a nature club of the month. What I would like is for my grass to grow slowly and beautifully green. I like to see butterflies and the return of wintering birds with their songs of spring. What I get is a weed of the month choking the progress of my lawn development. At the same time, I, like everyone else, have to deal with the bug of the month which loves to invade every possible square inch of personal space. Then there’s the mating season of everything on the planet. The past couple of weeks my immediate neighborhood has had to listen to two male woodpeckers chasing one female, dive-bombing one another and squawking this horrible battle cry. It’s been quiet the past two days so I guess a winner has been declared. That doesn’t discount the lovely scents lingering in the morning air deposited by lovesick skunks or the nightly screams of out-of-control cat population growth. I have to admit, though, I wouldn’t trade one weed or bug to live anywhere else. Every day is paradise in Texas.
The following “true story” speaks a lot about the quality of Japanese products and their quality standards. Supposedly they’re still chuckling about this at IBM. Many years ago, it seems the company giant decided to have some parts manufactured in Japan as a trial project. In the specifications, they set out that they would accept three defective parts per 10,000. When the delivery came in, there was an accompanying letter stating: “We, Japanese people, had a hard time understanding North American business practices. But the three defective parts per 10,000 have been separately manufactured and have been included in the consignment. We hope this pleases you.”
[2 Corinthians 5: 1-10] I did not write last week as I was in the midst of a storm. No, it wasn’t the weather; it was the devil tearing into my faith. My tent flaps were whipping in the wind, pegs were coming out of the ground, and I feared my tent was about to be damaged beyond repair. Emotionally, I came unwound, a known defect in the human anatomy, leaving me far from the fit spiritual mindset I need to be in for the success of these messages. My faith has held strong and another attitude adjustment, through the faithfulness of my brothers and sisters in Christ, has enlightened me with a better understanding of my Christian walk. James says this is good for me (James 1:2). Peter says I should not be surprised (1 Peter 4:12).
I don’t like my human defects invading my spiritual life, but once properly addressed, I’m stronger on all fronts.
Thomas W. Bonham is an associate minister with the Floresville Church of Christ. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Find his column on his blog at http://wilsoncountynews.com.
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