Reboot Me Lord Part 2
I often find my life corrupted similar to the way my computer becomes corrupted. There is an old computer acronym, G.I.G.O.----Garbage In, Garbage Out. If we overload our computers, or allow viruses, worms, or other organic-sounding things to get inside, they stop performing correctly, and let us down. Sometimes a minor tweak will correct the problem. Sometimes the power must be shut down, and the computer needs to be rebooted. In extreme cases, the hard disk must be wiped clean, and new operating system must be installed in its original, clean state.
As we lean back and think about this analogy between our own lives and the life of our computer, can we see some parallels? There may be many that come to mind, but let's look at three.
First, we can both become overloaded. When that happens to my computer, it crashes. At first , it begins to behave erratically, then it just plain shuts down, and attempts to reboot itself. Wow! I sure see my life there. I am one who feels that if something is worth doing, it is worth doing to excess. Working, eating, in my last life--drinking, gardening, driving. I have learned that I tend to do it all in excess. In November of 2005 I began this SeniorARK website. It is a worthwhile project, I think. But I confess that it has become an obsession with me. I can find myself getting up at 3AM to update the site with today's date at the top, and with fresh news on the news page. I am not walking and doing other physical things often enough these days. I need more balance in my life at the moment.
Jesus experienced this, I think. We read often about the crowds who "pressed in" on him, and the disciples were ever-present with questions and concerns. And we are also told that at times he "went apart" from them, and the crowds. These were times for rest, quiet contemplation, and prayer. We need to find these things in our daily routine. Learn to walk around the house, or to sit in your favorite chair---quietly. No TV, No background noise. No book. Just you, and maybe God.
Second, it may be time to have a look at what is entering us through our senses. You know, the eyes, ears, touch. Is it something that builds us up, or subtly wears us down? If we are allowing garbage to enter our lives all of the time, how can we expect a positive result with emotions, or spiritual satisfaction, or physical rejuvenation? Now I'm not talking about the Calvinistic work ethic, though my Presbyterian background certainly tugs at me on that score. I'm not saying that we cannot relax in mindless nothingness at times (no I don't mean booze or drugs). Work and betterment need not always be on our plates. But if our lives allow nothing but the trivial, or the meaningless, or the destructive to enter, then we could be in danger of some form of crash. And a simple reboot may not correct the situation. It may require some kind of basic rebuilding. If we do regular maintenance on our computers, they should function well for years. We understand that when speaking of a piece of technical equipment. Why do we forget it when speaking of ourselves? Are we not infinitely more important?
Third, I think we need to stay clean with God. Oh. I don't mean we need to follow a set a series of rules so we don't look dirty in the eyes of God. The life, death, and resurrection of Jesus made us fully clean. Nothing can ever separate us from the cleansing love of God. No sin or misstep of any kind. I cannot earn my salvation, nor can it be unearned.
What I am talking about is my relationship with God. If that relationship is fouled by my corrupted life, nothing else will work very well for me. If my basic operating system in the computer is fouled, then all of my programs are in danger of failing. When that happens, I have to start with repairing "Windows". If I am successful at that, everything else seems to fall into place and work just fine. I need to talk with God, and perhaps some human that I trust very much. I must share with both, my feelings, fears, failures. This can begin the repair process. And if I can begin to sense that my relationship with God, and the world is being repaired, then it is amazing how other things begin to fall into place.
If you have a dog, you know how it can misbehave from time to time. Have you ever chastised your dog and watched his/her ears drop? It is the picture of guilt. Do you still love your dog? Of course. But that dog will mope around, and maybe even hide, until it approaches you, licks your hand. You smile, say "good girl", and the ears come up, the dance begins, the eyes brighten,-----and the dog looks better too! Just kidding. You know what I mean. The relationship between you and the dog was broken. She knew it, and she was suffering. Only when she sensed that the relationship was being repaired did she feel rebooted and whole. Don't delay on step 3.
I have decided to use the same hymn and prayer as last week. They really seem to work well with this subject..
"Dear Lord and Father of mankind, Forgive our foolish ways.
Re-clothe us in our rightful minds, in purer lives Thy service find,
In deeper reverence, praise."
PRAYER: Reboot us Lord. Reclothe us in our rightful minds. At this moment we let go of all those things that cause any destructive input in our lives. Nudge us back to a healthy place with the allure of your love. Today, reboot us so that we may reappear fresh and clean and ready to rumble., in the name of Jesus, Amen