Backdraft Ignition

smokeFirefighters know that a room in a building can heat up to the point of ignition with no visible evidence. Not even smoke. And if oxygen is introduced by opening a door or breaking a window, flames can envelop the entire area almost instantaneously.

The backdraft phenomenon can happen to people. I know because it happened to me.

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Pummeled by Circumstances

PummelWe’re making our way through life and one thing after another goes wrong, expectations mount, and desperation threatens. It feels as if we’re running the gauntlet.

The phrase describes a type of corporal punishment practiced as early as the Roman military. It appears in European history as well as US and naval history. Men were stationed in a double line, often armed with a weapon—a club, rope, leather strap, cat o’ nine tails, or fists. A guilty prisoner or offending individual was sent down the pathway to be beaten as he passes.

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DANGER, Roses Ahead

RosesRoses are beautiful flowers. No doubt about it.
Have you ever spent time in a garden full of roses?
It’s possible to lose yourself there, as I have on Petřín Hill in Prague.

I don’t mean I got lost in the park above the City of 100 Spires. I’m talking about becoming so wrapped up in the beauty around you that any unpleasantness disappears—past hurts, annoying quirks, bad habits, heavy responsibilities, unsettling emotions, difficult relationships, _fill in the blank_.

Our surroundings absorb our entire load of burdens and we experience soul-deep peace. I trust you have a place or activity that brings you into that level of tranquility . . . and that you visit it regularly.

rose colored glassesThe danger comes when we take that interlude and set it in place of reality. We choose to see everything around us as only beautiful and positive, blinding ourselves to anything that might stretch or upset us. Thus the phrase, “looking at the world through rose-colored glasses”.

When we shift ourselves away from truth in any form, either internal or external, we step back from God. For God is truth and His Word is true.* Those who know Him, are called to worship Him in spirit and in truth.** As image bearers we pursue truth and communicate truth.

clear glasses 2We need to keep our lenses clear and seek God around the pitfalls and obstacles of life in a fallen world. Otherwise we’ll miss His guidance, and we’ll stumble at best and collapse at worst. Rose garden peace is a divine gift of refreshment. It’s not meant to take the place of facing our circumstances by His grace and power.

What’s your rose garden option for peace?
How do you avoid the rose-colored glasses delusion?

Asking the LORD to grant us all the balance we need in Him,

*Isaiah 65:16; John 1:14, 3:33, 8:26, 17:3; 1 John 5:20; Psalm 31:5
**John 4:23-24
***Exodus 13:21-22




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