As I grow older, one of the things I’ve been amused by has been how the meaning of words or phrases have changed over time. If you referred to someone as “bad”, back in the day, that was not a good thing. Now, I am not so sure. Are you saying he is bad, or do you mean he is really good to the point of being really “bad”? Huh? If something was “hot”, it meant you shouldn’t put it in your mouth or touch it with your bare hands, lest you got burned. Now, it just means it’s really popular or attractive. Refer to someone or something as “heavy” or “fat” these days, and you might hear, “Thanks man!!!” In days gone by, you might have gotten slapped or even punched in the nose. Am I the only one shaking my head a bit, here?
A few years ago, Tim McGraw had a big hit on country radio with a song called, “Back When”. He was basically singing about this very thing, how the meaning of words had changed (and not necessarily in a good way) and how the newer meanings have had an affect on how we view things or people, and again, maybe not in such a positive direction.
But for the sake of this post, I would like to discuss how the common understanding of one word has changed and see if maybe we can push the envelope even a little bit farther to see if there might be a spiritual application, one from which we can learn and see Christ more clearly in our daily lives. The word I want to focus on is “streaming”.
Where I come from, streaming was generally a word used in connection with flowing water, like a creek or a river or maybe even the flowing of teardrops down one’s cheek. It primarily meant that some form of liquid was flowing in a constant or steady fashion. Today, when we talk about “streaming”, more than likely we are referring to a constant flow of digital information. We are probably talking about TV shows, movies, music, or video games… “on demand”…which means whenever you are ready to receive, the data is streaming 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, just waiting for you to tap into it by simply touching a screen or clicking a mouse (I won’t even get into how that word has changed…lol).
In my brand new book, “Unlocking Creation”, I try to look “behind the curtain” to see if there are some important spiritual truths woven into the fabric of the things God has made and what I found was pretty amazing. So I wanted to do the same sort of thing, here, with the concept of “streaming.” And as always, a good place to start, of course, is the Bible. So let’s dig into God’s Word and see what it has to say on the subject:
Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. [James 1:17 ESV]
No variation, that’s good. It means we have a good connection, no dropped calls. I would say this verse indicates that our Father is “constantly streaming” every good and perfect gift from above and that they are constantly available for download. But are we receiving?
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. [Phillipians 4:6 NIV]
Looks like God also desires us to be “constantly streaming”, in real time, uploading our every need and request through prayer to Him. He is listening 24/7 on an “open channel” directly connected to our hearts. So what message are you transmitting?
Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. [1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NASB]
Here we have further confirmation that he wants us to be offering up a “live feed”, continually to Him. One of rejoicing, prayer and thanksgiving…no matter what the circumstances around us suggest.
It is a land the LORD your God cares for; the eyes of the LORD your God are continually on it… [Deuteronomy 11:12 NIV]
We humans may think we came up with the idea of having “live security cameras” watching over a certain location every minute of every day. Not so. God came up with the idea of “round-the-clock surveillance” long before there were even cameras.
Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. [Revelation 22:12 NIV]
And last but not least, this is an important one. How could God fairly hand out His just rewards to every man, woman and child who has ever lived, unless He had full and complete access to our every thought, word and deed….and every hidden intention of our hearts?
Well obviously He could not, which leads one to conclude that He indeed has all the information. Every second, every minute of everyday, from each and every person who has ever lived is being recorded, stored and securely backed up in such a way that the data will be available on that great and glorious day when we all stand before His throne. In fact, not one single “bit” will be lost (yet another common word that has taken on quite a different meaning these days). Amazing!!
One of my favorite Christian singer/songwriters of all time was Keith Green. He was very popular back when I first accepted Christ in 1979 (showing my age here), and his songs were so profound that their messages still resonate with me thirty-some years later. The one that sticks out regarding this discussion is his classic, “Make My Life A Prayer To You”. He was basically saying that he wanted to live his life in such a way that his every thought, word or deed would become a beautiful prayer to God. He obviously did not believe that Christianity comes with an “on/off switch”.
I tend to agree, not only for Christians, but for all of mankind whether an individual believes in God or not. We are all hard-wired from birth with a transponder that is constantly communicating in both directions with our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
What type of data we send out and how much we choose to receive from Him (or not) is up to us. Either way, I believe there is a secure and constant connection between all of God’s children and our Heavenly Father and not a single, tiny detail will remain hidden.
Don’t you wish someone had told you this years ago?
SMILE…..YOU’RE ON CANDID CAMERA!!!!