It is What it is

2 07 2017

I suppose you could blame it on the many years I spent in my chosen field as an Rock _nindustrial technician and analyst. Early on I was taught to never be content with the first answer you get in analyzing material or a test specimen. Can you get the same answer when repeating your test process twice and even three times? Are there other methods you can use to examine your sample and do answers match up with what you use for your normal process? At times, a testing procedure can devour hours, even days until you finalize the results and come to a conclusive answer. Generally speaking the final answer is one that is expected, but unfortunately there are moments that do not produce what had been hoped for or expected. It can also prove to be fruitless in understanding the given results; at those moments, we use a term I’m sure is used broadly in the analyzing world and other scenarios: “It is what it is.” So with this type of influence and background it’s little wonder why I approach many subjects the same way.

Over the course of my adult life I have pursued many interests: people, music, history, family tree, businesses, technology, machines and even vehicles. In every case I research as many avenues on a subject that I can find, trying to exhaust every bit of info each has to offer. If several sources agree and give the same answers, you can be rather sure of the findings. However, if a subject matter results in differing conclusions (say tracing a historic person or event) and in some cases theory takes place of solid facts, “It is what it is.”

As far back as I can remember I’ve always had a belief in God, that He’s out there somewhere watching over me and that the Bible was His Word; I may not have understood everything about Him or what’s in the Bible, but I believed it to be true. Then came a moment in my life that I call my “Dark Period.”  During this time, several occurrences entered my life; an accident that nearly took the lives of me and my family, another where a dear loved one was killed, failed business, financial ruin, and accusations aimed at me for suspected wrong doing. Each time I prayed to God for help, only to suffer another setback. I admit I began to question if the Lord really cared what happened to me, and frankly if He was even there or if the Bible could be trusted as truth or mere historical writings that seemed to contradict each other. Reading the Word became mundane as did attending church so I chose to isolate myself; if I couldn’t find comfort than I would just as soon be alone. But the more I closed up the more, it seemed, God was talking to my heart. There’s much wisdom in Max Lucado’s words, “God loves you just the way you are, but He refuses to leave you that way. He wants you to be just like Jesus.”

“Okay God, if you’re really there and Jesus, you really came to earth and Holy Spirit, you’re actually there to help and guide me, let’s just see if the proof is in the pudding!”  I began a two-year quest to put my hands on and study every piece of material on who God is and what the Bible really says. I studied men and women who dedicated their lives to serving a Being they had never seen and still gave that Being praise and glory no matter what became of them. I studied a score of authors and books on apologetics, the study and defense of God and the Bible. I read scriptures from numerous versions, English, German, Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic to see how they matched up against each other. But mostly, I dug into the Bible to get understanding of what it was saying and I prayed as one brother who was facing more trouble and heartache than he could handle saying, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

At the end of my sojourn, “Traveling the Rock Road,” to a better understanding of the one I call Lord, my heart and mind (besides at times having a headache that could kill a bull elephant) were at peace, knowing my God was there and His love, no matter what came, was beyond measure. Now I could give you quotes and scriptures to back my study that would easily fill ten more pages if not more.  But after all is said and done one of my favorites comes from Paul writing to Timothy. “That is why I am suffering as I am. Yet this is no cause for shame, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him until that day.”

As for quotes, well I like how old Billy Graham put it: “God has a plan for the life of every Christian. Every circumstance, every turn of destiny, is for your good. It is working together for completeness. His plan for you is being perfected. All things working together for your good and for His glory.”

So did I find an answer to every question that I had? Well in one word, nope! If I am to be honest with all you wonderful people there were a few questions, they were a few minute, or as we say in metallurgy, “trace elements” that I never could come to fully understanding. So where do we go from there? Getting back to what we used to say in the lab, “It is what it is.” In talking to one dear old saint, who has since gone to be with the Lord, about the unanswerable question, he softly smiled at me and said; “Oh the wonderful mysterious ways of our Lord that won’t be revealed until heaven!” In other words, he summed up “It is what it is” with just one word and belief–Faith.

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”

In closing today let me sum up what all my studies, all the labor and hours dedicated to understanding the God of the universe taught me most. And I can do that with the words of an old, old song written by Anna Bartlett Warner that perhaps you might have heard sometime or other.

Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so;

Little ones to Him belong, they are weak, but He is strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me!

The Bible tells me so.

See ya next time.


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One response

7 07 2017
Beverly Crane

“Faith”, such a powerful word. But what is life without it? Yes, Jesus Loves Me, one of the first songs I was taught in Sunday School. I love reading your stories. When I am done I feel a sense of peace surrounding me. Thank you John.

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