Fun With Electricity

Filed in PersonalTags: Missouri, Saint Louis

While today saw more deadly storms raging across the Saint Louis area, sparks were flying inside my apartment.

I noticed this morning that my lights and power were flickering. The problem seemed to get worse toward the late afternoon, when a power spike fried three of my surge protectors and took out the GFI outlet in my bathroom. Inside the breaker panel, I found sparking and arcing going on at the common line - an indicator of a short somewhere.

I tried isolating the short by systematically turning off each breaker in turn, but could not find a specific culprit. So, right now, I've got all the breakers off, except the essentials: the breaker with the refrigerator, and one with the bedroom outlet with my alarm clock. (The laptop is running on battery power right now.)

Worse yet, nobody was answering the emergency maintenance line for the apartment complex. I'm pretty sure I've mitigated any risk of an electrical fire tonight, and hopefully someone can get over first thing tomorrow to find out the problem.

OYB April 2

Filed in ReligionTags: Christianity, Devotions, One Year Bible

Today´s reading:
OT: Deuteronomy 21, Deuteronomy 22
NT: Luke 9:51-62, Luke 10:1-12
Ps: Psalm 74
Pr: Proverbs 12:11

Today´s notable verse:

1 If you see your brother's ox or sheep straying, do not ignore it but be sure to take it back to him. 2 If the brother does not live near you or if you do not know who he is, take it home with you and keep it until he comes looking for it. Then give it back to him. 3 Do the same if you find your brother's donkey or his cloak or anything he loses. Do not ignore it.

Deuteronomy 22:1-3 (NIV)

Reading these verses, I am reminded of the words of James:

Anyone then who knows the good he ought to do, and doesn't do it, sins.

James 4:17 (NIV)

We are called to holiness - to perfect, Christ-like love of God and man. We are told here very clearly that passive willingness not to do something in love is just as sinful as acting willfully contrary to love. We must seek out and be observant of the needs around us, and we must act upon them when we see them. Ignorance and apathy are entirely contradictory to Christ-like love.

The One Year Bible Blog notes:

Deuteronomy chapter 22 has various rules & regs, including sexual purity. It makes sense that there needed to be rules & regs for 1 million+ Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years - and for them as they are now about to enter the Promised Land. Essentially, these rules & regs kept the peace. But, hopefully more than that, they kept the Israelites minds & hearts focused on God and not on sin.

Similar sentiment to what I was discussing earlier, though I focused in one one particular regulation from the passage. What I am loving about reading the books of OT law is how clearly they foreshadow the more perfect Law of Christ. When we take the time to look past the "dos and don'ts" and see the underlying principles, we realize that those principles - specifically, love and holiness - lead us to a place of understanding in which the decisions represented by the OT Law are no longer even salient. We become so focused on knowing what it means to love one another, to love God, and to pursue His holiness that the rules and regulations codified in the OT Law would become meaningless. In other words, when I act in love in the pursuit of holiness, I will never need to concern myself with choosing between acts that are sinful or not. If I truly act in love toward my neighbor, I never risk sinning against him. If my entire being is focused on presenting my life as a sacrifice to God and my every thought captivated by becoming conformed into the likeness of God, then I never fear sinning against Him.

It is a lofty goal, to be sure; but, it is one to which each of us is called.

13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:13-14 (NIV)

Remember, the pursuit of holiness is not a destination but a journey. Press on!