Thursday, May 27, 2021

Growing Up in a Theater....and a Lesson on Justification


Awwwwww...dear Martyn Lloyd-Jones,

This is the story of Galatians.

The story of our JUSTIFICATION.

Thank you for the reminder this morning.


I lay awake for a lengthy amount of time on Sunday evening, stewing over my own disappointment in myself. 

Often I find myself in that place, knowing....

I could have said something a little differently, or more clearly, or...

I should have prepared myself more for...

I allowed myself to run off track so easily, and this could have been prevented by...

I fell short, because I...

I didn't quite measure up to the expected standard, and could have.....

Here's what I could have/should have done differently...

You might relate to these types of musings.

As I let that pot in my mind bubble and boil, just before it spilled over, a comforting reminder played out, as the Lord pulled from the movies stored up there in my brain a random picture-show.

I've mentioned before that I "grew up" in a movie theater. This one...

(Perhaps someday I should write an exposé on lessons learned...)

However, in the midst of my stew-fest, I found myself in the old projection room, upstairs, overlooking the theater below.

I didn't go up there often, as it could be a hectic place during those times my dad frantically switched reels (manually), making certain there wouldn't be any lag time resulting in skips or hesitations of the current movie.

(my dad also ran the movies in Point Barrow, Alaska where he was stationed in the Navy during WW2, circa 1944)

Cluelessly, those in the seats downstairs watched with no idea what went on behind the scenes.

But, Dad's skill and expertise kept their big-screen-experience humming.

Most of the time.

Occasionally, of course, glitches happened and chaos ensued...

...especially, when the film broke. 

When that happened, the reel of film would spill out all over the floor - piles of film, miles of "video tape" running rampant around that narrow space where the magic of the movies played out. 

(OK, so there's nothing comforting about this so far, but I'll get there.)

That's when Papa Jack might load up a cartoon he had on hand, as the folks waited for him to "do his thing."

After dismantling the lacerated film, he'd take the two reels to his work bench behind the two monster-projectors. 

There he would slice, dice, tape, and repair the problem.

Because each scene of a movie is comprised of multiple frames, once repaired, Papa could load that movie back up and resume with nary a missed moment...and the audience, while grumbling about the inconvenience of the pause, went back to their Friday/Saturday/Sunday night entertainment.

This is what was comforting...

As my dad gave movies a "do again," so my Heavenly Father offers me "do agains," too...

Sometimes there are glitches, breaks, inconveniences, and a failure to meet expectations in the current running movie of our lives. 

However, the Lord, the one who runs the projectors that are showing our life stories, can easily slice, dice, tape and repair the issues of our hearts.

He's a God of second opportunities...and He often gives us the gift of making things right (more for our sakes than His).

John 1:9 uses this word for the process:  confess

Confess - to speak a word of admission that's in agreement with another (in this case, the Lord); to admit or declare the ways in which one has missed the mark of God's standard...

That's the beauty of justification...when we confess, God (the JUST ONE) looks at us and says, "What sin?" 

All sin was taken care of (sliced, diced, taped, and repaired) at the Cross....

But for our sakes, we keep running to the Father, again and again and again, to be reminded of just how GREAT justification is. 

And over and over and over again, the Lord says, "Innocent. Yes, even this one was taken care of at Calvary."

And there in the projection room of heaven, the film continues - no skips, hesitations, or noticeable problems connected with the event that left all that mess piled up on the floor...

It's DONE! ✔

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