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Posts Tagged ‘Revelation 3:20’

Have I ever mentioned that I love my job?

I get to work when my kids are in school. I get a great summer break (with no pay, I might add). I get to work with a fantastic staff. I get to work in a setting that is not contrary to my core beliefs. I get to work more directly with parents than most school staff. But, most of all, I get to spend my work days as a personal investigator … Carole Wheaton, PI … love it!

You see, although my job is all about IEP’s (individualized educational plans), adapting and modifying curriculum (which, of course, I am not qualified to do 😉 ), ensuring that personal safety of the students is achieved, and integration of the students into the ‘typical’ world, the best part of my job is not in my job description, was not in the SETA (special education teaching assistant) program I studied, and will never be something that is asked of me. The best part of my job is the PI part …

door800I spend almost every minute, of every work day, looking for door knobs, handles, and deadbolts. I am terrible at journaling my observations, but I never stop observing, never stop asking questions of others, never stop hunting for the way into the mind of the students I have the privilege to work with. They amaze me!

The observations come in the midst of teaching an individualized math program when the student has an aha moment and he or she gets it!

Or, in the midst of a class, when the student who normally does not appear to be paying attention faces the front when the teacher stops talking about a subject, and reads the equivalent material in story form.

Or, when a student drifts off for almost five minutes, and I take the time to await his ‘return’, and when he does he looks sheepishly at me and says, “I wasn’t here, was I?” To which I could smile and say, “no worries, I’ll wait.”

Or, when a student is having the equivalent of what a mother would call a hissy fit, or tantrum, and when time and a place to regroup are availed to him, he returns as a person wanting nothing more than reconciliation.

Or, when a student gets to spend time with like minds, like abilities, away from the stress and conformity of the school setting, and, for the first time in the time I had known him, asks a total and proper question.

I wish I had the ability to turn the knobs, the handles, the locks and throw open the doors that sometimes stand between these meaning-filled individuals and their world. I wish I could open the doors for them …

I bet that is what Jesus feels too.

Like a personal investigator (except he already knows everything, right down to the number of hairs on our heads), Jesus spends his time outside a door … but this door has no handle, no knob, no lock. The only thing that keeps it closed is our refusal to welcome Him in.

I do not know the will power it must take for Him to stand there and wait, but I think I understand the value of not forcing ourselves through the door. Part of the joy of being a PI is knowing that the student achieved their eureka moment on their own, with hard work, determination, and their will.

Jesus is not an ogre who forced himself in, He is a gentleman who will wait patiently, knowing that when we finally open the door, and invite Him in, the case is closed, the case is won … and there is no going back!

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock.
If anyone hears My voice and opens the door,
I will come in to him and dine with him,
and he with Me.”
Revelation 3:20

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“We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner!”
Bilbo Baggins
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Cleaning this summer, I came across a few papers with notes that I had gotten from the Drama teacher at the school I work. She had used the notes as she was introducing The Hobbit play to our high school last spring.

I cannot remember exactly what it was about those notes, or her delivery of the introduction, that caught my imagination, only that they sparked an idea for a blog post. As I read them this summer, there was no particular line that jumped out, and yet, the entire message of black on white, was one that left me nodding in agreement as I read.

If you are familiar with The Hobbit, you will know about Bilbo Baggins, the middle aged hobbit who likes his life … comfortable … safe … predictable (I can relate). What Bilbo does not realize, in the beginning of the story, is that his comfortable, safe, predictable life have also created within him an acceptance of life without adventure, without risk, without … living.

The moment when Gandalf enters into the scene, the house, the life of Bilbo … it is then that Bilbo’s life begins to change, because it is then that Bilbo gets distracted from what he had wanted to do. For some (uncharacteristic for a hobbit) reason Bilbo invites Galdalf back for tea, and it is in the invitation that Bilbo’s adventure, and his life truly begin (even though he becomes late for dinner).

An adventure, is something people often speak of wanting, but not many venture beyond their comfortable, safe, predictable daily lives. To venture in such a way would be to choose change, and with it comes the possibility of discomfort, the unexpected, danger and rejection. To choose not to change has consequences as well … missing out on opportunities, on relationships, on learning … on life.

That one small act of opening the door was all it took for Bilbo to begin his great adventure and his really living.

Christ also comes to the door of each of our lives. Sometimes He seems to break the door down, but more often His knock is barely audible, except to the heart of the one whose door He is knocking. When Christ walks in, and we make that most adventurous decision to open the door and let him enter, it is then that our lives begin to change and we begin to live.

That living comes from being so distracted by the adventure designed for us that we forget what it was that we wanted to do. His purpose becomes our purpose, and it is then that we can live … really live life’s adventure.

So, is not being late for dinner worth not answering the door?

Or will not answering the door make you late for dinner?

 “Look at me. I stand at the door. I knock. If you hear me call and open the door, I’ll come right in and sit down to supper with you.”
Revelation 3:20

“It’s a dangerous business, walking out one’s front door”
Gandalf

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Knock knock.KnockKnockV
Who’s there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock knock.
Who’s there?
Orange.
Orange who?
Orange you glad I didn’t say “banana”?

There was a stage of my son’s childhood when the above ‘knock, knock’ joke was told multiple times a day. It seemed there was no stopping him in his quest to share the giggles he would get by telling it (usually the giggles started as soon as he started to speak).

I think that what children like about knock, knock jokes is that they get to ask us a question that we have to respond to. They are initiating, providing an opportunity for us to respond. They know how we should respond, but we do not always follow through on fulfilling that expectation (after the millionth time we hear it).

It is easy to reach the point of apathy towards what is offered to us, over and over again. We hear it, we know how we ‘should’ respond, but we do not always follow through in responding in line with what is being offered.

As I was reading from Revelations recently, I was captured by the knocking.

“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock.
If anyone hears my voice and opens the door,
I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.”
Revelation 3:20

God is the initiator here, He is at the door, knocking.

The door this speaks of is the door to our hearts … the hearts that He first knit together in our mother’s wombs (Psalm 139:13).

And He leaves it up to us to choose, of our own free will, whether or not to open the door, and let Him in.

I think that it is common that we open the door, only to close it again, leaving the Initiator at the doorstep, maybe even many times.

But, like that preschooler with a gem of a joke to tell us, He waits, and knocks again, and again, and again. His offer is always there. He does not leave His post, continually initiating the offer of his pearls, desperate for us to see the eternal value in what He has to give.

It is easy to reach the point of apathy towards what is offered to us, over and over again. We hear it, we know how we ‘should’ respond, but we do not always follow through in responding in line with what is being offered.

He takes the first step and knocks, but God does not force himself in.

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