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  • Gomer Pyle, USMC

    For God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty.
    (
    I Corin 1:27)

    During my recent convalescence, I wasn't able to do much, but was able to sit and revisit Gomer Pyle, USMC. At the close of episodes, I have found myself weeping with considerable contrition, asking God to forgive me, and to make me a little more like Private Pyle. Maybe something inside me has finally snapped.. or maybe there was something more behind the Gome's wide and wacky smile. Perhaps it was more than blissful ignorance. Maybe it was an inner child-like joy that could overcome dour circumstance, and somehow leave a resultant peace in its wake.

    Would a naive, innocent gullible backwoods dolt really be able to do that?? Would a dolt be able to feel the suffering of others and administer rebuke against those in the wrong? Could a dolt feel shame and regret over his own shortcomings?

    To be sure, Gomer was wrapped in the swaddling clothes of an absent-minded brain, cartoonish expressions and a North Carolina accent. But possibly, he wasn't nearly as gullible as he was simply overwhelmingly kind. Perhaps he CHOSE to see folks through the refraction of rose colored (blood bought) glasses. Perhaps gullibility did not blind him to their present evil nature, but maybe Love CAUSED him to see them at their highest potential according to faith. Is not faith the assurance of things hoped for but not yet seen? And perhaps he realized that the only way people could become transformed was by SOMEONE treating them well, assuming the best about them, and BELIEVING in them.

    What if they laughed and made fun of him?
    What if they even took financial advantage of him?
    What a small price to pay to gain a forever friend for all eternity!!

    Some would walk thru the door that he had opened for them and some would not. But only the ones that BELONGED in the kingdom would go thru. The haters, the doubters, the cynics and the fearful could not go thru until they humbled themselves to be escorted by someone as foolish as Gomer Pyle.

    Gomer cared not about praise for himself, but gave it freely away to others. He always chose the low seat in the back so everyone else could see just a bit better. His own shortcomings were painfully focused in front of his face, but still garnered joy from watching others succeed. As a result, Gomer was quick to apologize for himself or accept an apology from others. He sought community with even the most unpleasant, being able to find a hidden rose where others only saw thorns. He gave them a leg up and a shoulder to stand on. And by accepting his effort, they were introduced to Love.

    Gomer willingly gave despite the risks of rejection or failure and his own limitations. He called Sgt.Carter the most upstanding individual he knew, was willing to follow him anywhere, and wished never to be separated from him. Gomer is my hero. I would like to have a friend like that..and BE a friend like that.

    I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.
    And my speech and my preaching were NOT with persuasive words..
    But in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power,
    That your faith should not be in the wisdom of men,
    But in the Power of God. (l Corin 2:3-5)

    For I long to visit you so that I can impart to you the faith that will help you grow strong.
    Then too, I need your help. I want to not only share my faith with you, but also be encouraged by yours.
    Each of us will be a blessing to the other.
    For I owe a great debt to you and to everyone else, both to civilized people and uncivilized alike;
    Yes, to the educated and the uneducated alike.
    So to the fullest extent of my ability, I am ready to come to you. (Rom 1:12-15)
    Last edited by RoyDavid; January 30, 2018, 04:25 PM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by RoyDavid View Post
    For God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty.
    (
    I Corin 1:27)

    During my recent convalescence, I wasn't able to do much, but was able to sit and revisit Gomer Pyle, USMC. At the close of episodes, I have found myself weeping with considerable contrition, asking God to forgive me, and to make me a little more like Private Pyle. Maybe something inside me has finally snapped.. or maybe there was something more behind the Gome's wide and wacky smile. Perhaps it was more than blissful ignorance. Maybe it was an inner child-like joy that could overcome dour circumstance, and somehow leave a resultant peace in its wake.

    Would a naive, innocent gullible backwoods dolt really be able to do that?? Would a dolt be able to feel the suffering of others and administer rebuke against those in the wrong? Could a dolt feel shame and regret over his own shortcomings?

    To be sure, Gomer was wrapped in the swaddling clothes of an absent-minded brain, cartoonish expressions and a North Carolina accent. But possibly, he wasn't nearly as gullible as he was simply overwhelmingly kind. Perhaps he CHOSE to see folks through the refraction of rose colored (blood bought) glasses. Perhaps gullibility did not blind him to their present evil nature, but maybe Love CAUSED him to see them at their highest potential according to faith. Is not faith the assurance of things hoped for but not yet seen? And perhaps he realized that the only way people could become transformed was by SOMEONE treating them well, assuming the best about them, and BELIEVING in them.

    What if they laughed and made fun of him?
    What if they even took financial advantage of him?
    What a small price to pay to gain a forever friend for all eternity!!

    Some would walk thru the door that he had opened for them and some would not. But only the ones that BELONGED in the kingdom would go thru. The haters, the doubters, the cynics and the fearful could not go thru until they humbled themselves to be escorted by someone as foolish as Gomer Pyle.

    Gomer cared not about praise for himself, but gave it freely away to others. He always chose the low seat in the back so everyone else could see just a bit better. His own shortcomings were painfully focused in front of his face, but still garnered joy from watching others succeed. As a result, Gomer was quick to apologize for himself or accept an apology from others. He sought community with even the most unpleasant, being able to find a hidden rose where others only saw thorns. He gave them a leg up and a shoulder to stand on. And by accepting his effort, they were introduced to Love.

    Gomer willingly gave despite the risks of rejection or failure and his own limitations. He called Sgt.Carter the most upstanding individual he knew, was willing to follow him anywhere, and wished never to be separated from him. Gomer is my hero. I would like to have a friend like that..and BE a friend like that.

    I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.
    And my speech and my preaching were NOT with persuasive words..
    But in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power,
    That your faith should not be in the wisdom of men,
    But in the Power of God. (l Corin 2:3-5)

    For I long to visit you so that I can impart to you the faith that will help you grow strong.
    Then too, I need your help. I want to not only share my faith with you, but also be encouraged by yours.
    Each of us will be a blessing to the other.
    For I owe a great debt to you and to everyone else, both to civilized people and uncivilized alike;
    Yes, to the educated and the uneducated alike.
    So to the fullest extent of my ability, I am ready to come to you. (Rom 1:12-15)
    Seeing the divine message in a TV sitcom is not something the world can do. The Holy Spirit within you "CHOSE to see folks through the refraction of rose colored (blood bought) glasses." It is marvelous the things the Lord uses to pound truth into us. I had never observed what you described until you exposed the message. I will never think of Gomer Pyle in the same way again. Yea! It does speak to the essence of who we are called to be, and yet, at the same time expresses our resistance to be made such a fool in the eyes of the world.

    Comment


    • #3
      Thanks Roy. Hope you have recovered completely.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hiya Glen..good to hear from you! How's things in the Lone Star state? If its a little too warm down there I could probably sell you a few tons of snow to take the edge off..would be a little cheaper if you took it out of my driveway..

        Comment


        • #5
          I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling.
          And my speech and my preaching were NOT with persuasive words..
          But in the demonstration of the Spirit and of power,
          That your faith should not be in the wisdom of men,
          But in the Power of God. (l Corin 2:3-5)

          For I long to visit you so that I can impart to you the faith that will help you grow strong.
          Then too, I need your help. I want to not only share my faith with you, but also be encouraged by yours.
          Each of us will be a blessing to the other.
          For I owe a great debt to you and to everyone else, both to civilized people and uncivilized alike;
          Yes, to the educated and the uneducated alike.
          So to the fullest extent of my ability, I am ready to come to you. (Rom 1:12-15)



          Wouldn't that be something if those words above were not just written by Paul, but were actually the thoughts and feelings of the Lord Jesus being conveyed to US?? He longs to visit US?? He needs OUR help?? He would be encouraged by US?? He owes a debt to US?? To the civilized and UNCIVILIZED, educated and UNEDUCATED?? And to the fullest extent of His Ability, I AM is ready to come to US?? Maybe THAT is why people are willing to die for Him...
          Last edited by RoyDavid; February 5, 2018, 09:29 PM.

          Comment


          • #6
            Seems to me that Jesus would have to stoop far further to be with the best of us, then the best of us would have to stoop to be with the least of us. And Jesus prefers the company of the least of the least of us. Who do we think we are? If Jesus is a Good Teacher, what shall we learn from Him?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by RoyDavid View Post
              Seems to me that Jesus would have to stoop far further to be with the best of us, then the best of us would have to stoop to be with the least of us. And Jesus prefers the company of the least of the least of us. Who do we think we are? If Jesus is a Good Teacher, what shall we learn from Him?
              RoyDavid,
              You posted:
              Wouldn't that be something if those words above were not just written by Paul, but were actually the thoughts and feelings of the Lord Jesus being conveyed to US?? He longs to visit US?? He needs OUR help?? He would be encouraged by US?? He owes a debt to US?? To the civilized and UNCIVILIZED, educated and UNEDUCATED?? And to the fullest extent of His Ability, I AM is ready to come to US?? Maybe THAT is why people are willing to die for Him...

              What seems to you appears revealed by the Apostle Paul. Perspective is an essential part of having a relationship with God as you said "Who do we think we are?" If the Holy Spirit is the master of our thoughts and our perspective just as you describe, then we know who we are.

              Philippians 2:5-8 KJV
              5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
              6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
              7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:
              8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

              2 Corinthians 8:9 ESV
              9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.
              ==================
              The over ridding issue for all Christians since Pentecost is the same. Surrendering to the Lordship of Christ so completely that what we think is the opposite of what was thought before we confessed Christ.

              The ugliest aspect about Christians is not that they continue to commit sins, but that that their thoughts are not that of the Holy Spirit but that of worldly, selfish, carnal man; and they think what they think is what Jesus thinks. Such is not just ugly it is blasphemous. We must recognize that we must choose against ourselves, our own interests, our finances, and against the politics of the nation in which we reside if we are to follow Jesus. Jesus commands disciples to pick up their own cross and follow Him.
              He must have meant it because it is recorded six (6) times in the gospels.

              Matthew 10:38
              And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

              Matthew 16:24
              Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

              Mark 8:34
              And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

              Mark 10:21
              Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me.

              Luke 9:23
              And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.

              Luke 14:27
              And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple.

              AND WHERE DID JESUS GO WHEN HE PICKED UP HIS CROSS.
              NOT TO TEACH OR PREACH –- NOT TO HELP OTHERS –- NOT TO DO MISSIONS
              BUT THE LORD JESUS WENT TO DIE ON THE CROSS HE CARRIED AND TO DIE WILLINGLY.
              HE DID JUST AS PHILIPPIANS 2:8 INFORMS THE READERS.
              THE KING OF KINGS, THE LORD OF LORDS, JESUS WHO SITS ON THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD THE FATHER - HUMBLED HIMSELF, AND BECAME OBEDIENT UNTO DEATH.

              AND THIS SAME JESUS SAID “FOLLOW ME.”
              CHRISTIANS ARE NOT TO CONSIDER WHAT THEY NEED, OR WHAT THEY WANT, OR WHAT IS IN THEIR OWN INTEREST.
              CHRISTIANS ARE TO DIE TO ALL SELF INTEREST.

              IT IS THE COST OF DISCIPLESHIP.
              WHEN CHRIST BIDST A MAN, HE BIDST HIM COME AND DIE.
              Last edited by glen smith; February 6, 2018, 12:30 PM.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thanks Glen..I perceive that we may be brothers in this. I have had a stirring inside of me for quite some time that seems against the status quo. The further down the road I go the stronger it gets; and the more I look around at our world the more relevant it appears. Our church, country, and world are fractured by dividing walls of denominations, political parties, economic levels, nationalities,ect.,erected by us for our own safety and comfort. Within those walls, we devise our god that thinks and looks just like us. We shout the scriptures we claim support us, and then ignore or diminish the verses that don't. Armed with "scriptural" authority we raise a holy war against our alternative viewpoint citizens, of whom we most assuredly have NOT walked in their moccasins. But we have judged THEM evil and worthy of destruction. But the only worthy war will begin by our acknowledgement that WE are the most worthy of God's Judgement, by taking His Grace and Forgiveness for ourselves while actively plotting the destruction of others; before even considering their position and viewpoints.

                I am quite unsure of how to walk this out Glen. I would be interested in how you are working your way thru this conundrum of old friends and alliances and where Jesus may be leading. Being alone in this is rather fearful and unsettling. I believe last year God gave me "Musings from the Farm Path 2" that may give us a clue about following Him. What do you think?

                For Christ himself is our way of peace.
                He has made peace between the religious and the nonreligious,
                By making us all one family, by breaking down the wall of contempt that used to separate us.
                By His death, he ended the angry resentment between us,
                Caused by the religious laws which favored us and excluded others,
                For He died to annul the whole system of religious legalism.
                Then He took the groups that had been opposed to each other, and made them parts of Himself;
                Thus He fused us together to become one new person, and at last there was peace.
                As parts of the same body, our anger toward each other has disappeared,
                For we have all been reconciled to God.
                And so, all the feuds ended, at last, at the Cross. (Eph 2:14-16)
                (Roy's Living Translation)

                Comment


                • #9
                  That will preach!
                  Your first paragraph - had me and had me.
                  It is the sin of my selfishness.
                  I know but do not.
                  How can a man be more rebellious?
                  I would rather argue, debate, and interpret with others like me than follow Jesus.
                  Following Jesus is for radicals and fanatics.

                  Those who have lived following Jesus, written of their struggle and love, and then died a martyr condemn me daily.
                  How do you walk this out, you ask?
                  You ask the wrong coward.
                  I have too much to loose.
                  I suppose, the disciple must become reckless, whatever the cost or risk, for His sake.
                  Become a fool for Christ.
                  Forsake all.
                  Die to self.

                  You remind me to look at the path I have worn.
                  It makes a circle, round and around.
                  It is deep for I have been on it for a long time.
                  It is is at the foot of my cross.
                  It is but a short step from the foot of the cross to accept ones place on the cross.
                  But that step is the longest trip there can be for a coward.
                  You have exposed me.
                  -------------------------------------------
                  Roy's Living Translation of Eph. 2:14-16 is wonderful.
                  You are encouraged to do this often.
                  It may be among the best methods of Bible study.
                  It is similar to memorizing or reading a passage hundreds of times.
                  Only in this does the word overcome our provincial perspective.
                  As the passage dwells in our thought the Holy Spirit illuminates the meaning to our heart.
                  Miracle of miracles - we are changed from carnal man to spiritual man - a new creation born again.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    No Glen, I did not ask the wrong coward..I asked the RIGHT coward. The coward that openly admits it, has already taken the first step towards valor and becoming one of the King's mighty men. And we are by the way, in the same coward club..far be it from me to expose you!

                    I believe you have spent much time looking into the Master's eyes and have seen His inner thoughts and feelings of His Soul. You have done well to tell others. As He reached to draw you closer, you spontaneously confessed your cowardice unwilling to have that cloak remain between Him and you. You admitted this publicly on the world-wide-web without even thinking of the risk it could be to your present situation. In a split heartbeat you chose to be nearer to Jesus than to all of your other stuff.

                    I don't know the way Glen, but I know your first step has been right. He is not asking us to go over Niagara in a barrel (yet!), just kinda take another baby step in the general direction. The way out of the rut is not up..its down. His Waters always flow that way. Look for the erosion and follow it out. His people will be lying along the creek bed, thirsting desperately for the Water that you have. They will not be arguing or debating doctrine. They just simply NEED a drink from Jesus. His River of Life begins as a trickle from beneath the altar and becomes ever deeper and ever stronger, (we becoming ever less), until it eventually becomes the raging River of The Healing of the Nations.

                    I would consider it an honor to be able to stumble along with you, down the path.

                    My Lord knows that the children are weak,
                    And the flocks and herds which are nursing are with me.
                    And if men should drive them too hard one day,
                    All the flock will die.

                    He will lead on slowly at a pace which the livestock and the children
                    Which go before me will be able to endure,
                    Until I come to my Lord in Seir. (Genesis 33:13-14)

                    Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden,
                    And I will give you rest.
                    Take my yoke upon you and learn from Me,
                    For I am gentle and lowly in heart,
                    And you will find rest for your souls.
                    For My yoke is easy,
                    And My burden light. (Math 11:28-30)

                    For with stammering lips and another tongue,
                    He will speak to this people,
                    To whom He said, "This is the Rest with which
                    You may cause the weary to rest,"
                    And "This is the Refreshing";
                    Yet they would not hear.

                    But the word of the Lord was to them,
                    "Precept upon precept, line upon line,
                    Here a little, there a little,"
                    That they might go and fall backward,
                    And be broken, and snared and caught. (Isaiah 28:11-13)

                    [Haha...I WANT caught!!]
                    [No.. I NEED caught!!]
                    Last edited by RoyDavid; February 9, 2018, 08:53 PM.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Everybody is a coward. It takes a brave person to admit that. Nobody is worthy. Everybody deserves condemnation. It is only possible for a God such as the One we serve to forgive us and show us the way. I certainly am incapable of accepting my lot and not judging my neighbor. I need His help every second, in order to cross the line to the other side where He is patiently waiting for me. I have to ask and many times do not out of my apathy and foolishness. God forgive me and guide me out of my foolishness and out of the dark.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        RoyDavid,
                        You know a rut is nothing but a grave with both ends kicked out?
                        Before you think to "consider it an honor to be able to stumble along with you, down the path" you might wish to notice the dates within and at the end of this post.
                        There was a time back in 1970 when I attempted to forsake all for the Lord.
                        Sold or gave away everything.
                        Made restitution for ever sin I could remember.
                        Lived a life of mere substance to go to seminary.
                        Accepted a ministry with the 7th largest congregation in our denomination.
                        Gained enough recognition to be in the plans for coveted positions of our denomination.
                        Ministered seven days a week from six am to nine or ten pm.
                        Studied and prayed every night to two or three am.
                        During one period I decided the only way to be like Jesus was to be familiar with every detail of His life.
                        So, I read all four gospels everyday for forty days.
                        At the end of forty days I was so down trodden because I was no more like Jesus than when I started.
                        My conclusion. No one can be like Jesus like Jesus can.
                        The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer spells out discipleship.
                        Every time I tried to read it I became so convicted that by pages 90 to 110 I had to stop.
                        After a few months I would try reading it again with the same results.
                        After four years and starting over five times I finally read the entire book.
                        Reading The Cost of Discipleship did nothing but illuminate my refusal to follow Jesus.

                        Study and service became my substitute for spirituality.
                        Academics became my stumbling block while denominational politics was the means God used to remove me.

                        The conversation from the foot of the cross of Christ continued for another 15 or 16 years.
                        I was doing all the talking, not Jesus.
                        The oppressed feeling eventual broke my stubbornness.
                        I quit talking and started listening.
                        All my efforts, my study, my service, and sacrifice are worth nothing - gains nothing.

                        As I said:
                        I know, but do not.
                        Following Jesus is always before me - in all I see, read, observe, or think.
                        I never think of what I want but what He wants.
                        Yet, I do not.
                        -------------------------

                        The Paradox Riddle: Where Do I Stand?

                        It is the longest of journeys
                        But only a step away.

                        Everyone could make it,
                        But only a few will try.

                        No one can afford the cost,
                        But everyone has the price to go.

                        No one knows the path
                        But everyone can know the way.

                        It is an impossible demand
                        But is possible for a little child.

                        It is the hardest of fights
                        But requires no struggle.

                        It demands unconditional surrender
                        But provides complete victory.

                        All must be left behind,
                        But all there is, is gained.

                        No one can take this journey with me,
                        But it cannot be made alone.

                        This journey will cause my death,
                        But because of this journey I will live.

                        I stand looking at one who has died,
                        As he calls me to my death.

                        At the foot of the Cross of Christ
                        I see the cross he has for me.

                        I hear him as he pleads,
                        "Pick up your cross and follow me."

                        From the foot of the Cross
                        It is only a step away.

                        Glen B. Smith
                        2/2/2000
                        9:00 PM

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Nope, did not change my mind other than it would be an HONOR to stumble along with you.
                          So lets just say IF you were going to become a radicalized Jesus nut, where would He take you Glen? What would He have you do that would cost too much?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            You make me lay it out?
                            To examine the possibilities?
                            To determine if it is doable?
                            Just the simple thing in front of me.
                            No planning - just doing.

                            Immediately, I would hit the street with money in my pocket and my Bible.
                            I would boldly testify to the Lord to all - even if they did not listen.
                            I would give to those in need and serve those unloved.
                            I would find a congregation that would allow worship in their sanctuary 24 hours a day seven days a week because I would expect for the Presence of the Lord to be in that place.
                            I would find musicians who would volunteer.
                            I would demand the congregation pay all the bills and clean the building.
                            I would promise them the filth and the broken of the world.
                            Also, I would promise them the Kingdom of God.
                            All, from every tribe and nation would be compelled, not asked, to come and worship.

                            Failure or success would not be because of my limitations.
                            Either way, I die with a crown.
                            Last edited by glen smith; February 11, 2018, 11:22 PM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I like the way you are thinkin. We might have a long walk before we find that church you're talkin about. Maybe we would have to take ourselves to where the filth and the broken live. Plant some love there and see what grows. I have been reading a book called "The Irresistable Revolution" by Shane Clairborne. He says to leave your title at home and not to underestimate the power of the broken to minister to the ministers. In fact it is imperative that ministry occur between everyone so everybody feels loved and needed..and to have success. Some of the things he has seen poor people do for him and each other has left him feeling in awe and inadequate. Pretty incredible story of the ability of Love to cross over divisions and boundaries in what would seem to be God-forsaken places. Yes, Love compels..legalism demands. Open 24/7 huh? No locked doors? A true sanctuary for those in need? No matter their color or creed? I like you Glen..when are we gettin started? Maybe Steve wants to go too..

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