May 31, 2020

Pastoral Nuggets: Following the Instructions

Believe it or not, I am very mechanically inclined.

99% of the time, if given enough time, I can figure out how things work and repair them when necessary.

But note, I said, “99% of the time!” There was this one time that comes to mind …

The drain was leaking on the kitchen sink.

So, this necessitated the services of that little-known superhero, “Mr. Fix It!” (Me!)  (I can fix anything but a broken heart!)

The sink was a double sink and had that old “aluminum type” drain plumbing installed. Seeing as it was old and leaking, I decided to just replace the whole shooting-match with a PVC drain. This shouldn’t be difficult. After all, I had the old plumbing for a template.

So, off I went and purchased the necessary materials to make the repairs. I sat in the floor in front of the double sink and began to assemble the new drain.

After about an hour, Marianne came in and asked me how it was going. Wrong move! I exclaimed to her that somebody had left out some of the parts I needed!

She asked, “Have you read the instructions?” Have I read the instructions? What? Didn’t she know who she was talking to? I’m Mr. Fix It! And I certainly don’t need any instructions to know how to assemble a sink drain! Besides, the assembly wasn’t the problem.

The problem was that somebody had left out a couple of parts that secure the drain trap assembly to the drainpipes. All they had put in the plumbing package was two rubber band looking things!

Look, I may have been born at night, but not last night! I didn’t need anybody, or any instructions, to tell me those rubber bands weren’t strong enough to support the drain trap assembly. So, I threw the stuff down and walked off in a huff!

I came back about ten minutes later, only to discover that Marianne had assembled and installed the new drain. I exclaimed, “How’d you do that?” To which she replied, “I read the instructions and figured out how to install those two rubber band things you said wouldn’t work.”  Awh, man! Puh-lease!

It seems that mankind has always found it difficult to follow instructions – even the females of the species!  Exhibit A would be Adam & Eve in the Garden of Eden! And we all know how that one turned out! But it certainly didn’t stop there.

I’m specifically thinking about the instructions God gave regarding the night of the Passover. Moses told them that The Destroyer (Death) would pass through all of Egypt that night and destroy the firstborn of every family – including the Children of Israel.

Their instruction was to take the blood of a sanctified sacrificial lamb and place it on the doorpost of the house.

The Lord promised that when The Destroyer saw the blood applied, he would pass over that house. The reality of the situation is very plain: They could follow the instructions and live or ignore them and die.

I find it quite amazing that those instructions didn’t ask the people what they thought about God, Moses, or Pharaoh.

Those instructions didn’t care about their political beliefs, socio-economic standing, marital status, parenting skills, their belief in God, or their opinion regarding the instructions. They were simply instructions! That’s it; period!

In closing, regarding this Coronavirus, we’re facing something that we’ve never faced before.

And it doesn’t matter what you think about President Trump, or any other politician or health official. What matters is that “people in the know” are giving us instructions.

It’s this simple: Follow the instructions and there’s a good chance you’ll live; ignore them and there’s a good chance you will die.

And sadly, you may unknowingly cause somebody else to die! Now is the time for us to lay aside all our differences, pray, trust God, trust those in authority, and follow the instructions!

Brother Aaron  

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