Semicolon

semicolon

The first printed semicolon was the work of the Italian printer in Venice named Aldus Manutius the Elder in 1494. Manutius established the practice of using the semicolon to separate words of opposed meaning and to allow a rapid change in direction in connecting interdependent statements. 

A famous quote by Lynne Truss, (Eats, Shoots, and Leaves) states, “Just as there are writers who worship the semicolon, there are other high stylists who dismiss it – who label it, if you please, middle-class.” – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semicolon

Who knew a semicolon had such a life!

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if your work in life was limited to things like arguing about the value of semicolons? Oh, I knew there was an easier employment path than the one I chose! Well, my negligent and reckless career decision is now a speck in my life’s rearview mirror.

Now, the modern use of semicolons is to join two independent clauses without using a conjunction like and. As an example from Grammarly.com: We can go to the museum to do some research; Mondays are pretty quiet there.

So how does a semicolon provide value to us in our walk with Jesus? “This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.” – Romans 13:6-7 NIV

Christianity requires our full attention.

There’s no doubt that our walk as Christians requires our full attention. I find myself quickly sucked into Facebook memes that people send me. Some are pure entertainment, while others are funny but run contrary to the will of God.

Paying taxes and revenue are generally not too challenging for us, it’s those last two semicolon commands that trip us up.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mattimattila/

Show respect. Show honor. These two are not limited to when we are in the presence of a person. No, we need to do these two even when no one is around – that’s part of our character. It can be difficult when we read a meme or watch a video or see a caricature that is truly funny but is disrespectful or dishonors a person or people or a country or whatever.

We will be giving an account.

Romans 14:10-12 (ESV):

Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written,
“As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me,
    and every tongue shall confess to God.”
So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.

Enjoy your reading and online activities but don’t let your guard down. Jesus is watching (really).

Feature Photo from Wikipedia

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Wisdom

My wife and I went through what I call the “Clumbsy Dance of Should I”. We were together in the same gospel group. Should I ask her on a date? The “How I met your mother” TV show postulated that in every relationship, one person is a “reacher”, and one is a “settler”. In that show, Marshall was upset to find out he was considered the “reacher”. In my case, I knew I was the “reacher.”

We started dating, and during that phase, I was fearful I would do something that would disappoint her. I was fearful because I wanted to please her. That is a simplistic example of the fear of God.

It can be confusing to read in Leviticus 19:14 or Job 28:28  to fear the Lord. In Psalms 111:10, it says, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow His precepts have a rich understanding. His praise endures forever!”

So, we’re not talking about the kind of fear a person typically experience when diagnosed with cancer. “Barnes’ Notes on the Bible,” says concerning the “fear of the Lord”, that it is the “fear of offending him, which will lead us to do right. This fear is not that of a slave; it is not mere dread; it is not terror. It is consistent with love, and springs from it. It is consistent with calmness of mind, and promotes it. It does not produce terror, but rather delivers from it, and preserves the mind from alarms.

God loves us. However, it’s futile to pray for wisdom if we don’t already hold in our hearts the fear that we will disappoint the LORD our God.

Photo by James & Carol Lee on Unsplash

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