Follow me on Twitter at

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Lean Not On Your Own Understanding

For the last three months, my health has improved to the extent that I have been able to deliver a short gospel message from the pulpit in our chapel.  Since I am scheduled to speak again in two months, I have spent hours researching how I could use Lozanne’s iPad in order to combine a PowerPoint presentation of prepared slides with my speaking.  Since I am of the generation that was introduced to the digital age after we turned forty, new computer skills can provide a rather steep learning curve. The Apple equivalent of PowerPoint is called Keynote.  When I was ready to purchase and download the Keynote software, I then discovered that I must download the latest operating system for Lozanne’s iPad.  Knowing first hand the devastation of lost data that can be the result of an operating system update, I then researched for hours the new IOS 5.1 update recommended before I could purchase Keynote.  With some difficulty and much trepidation I successfully backed up all of the data on her tablet computer.  That completed with minimal damage done to my wife’s iPad, I then purchased Keynote, whereupon I spent hours learning how to make a presentation in Keynote on my iMac and then transferring it to her iPad.
Having completed these challenging feats, I then researched how to use an iPad with a conventional digital projector.  After considerable reading and asking a Christian brother for advice, I purchased the proper VGA adapter.  Adapter and iPad in hand, I planned to test out a sample Keynote presentation on the chapel digital projector between services last Sunday morning.  With the assistance of the young man who looks after the audio-visual needs of our chapel and who possesses towering technical knowledge as compared to mine, I connected the iPad to the digital projection system.  I turned on the iPad and brought up the Keynote software.  I opened my sample presentation and was immediately disappointed with the huge blank and dark screen behind the pulpit.  I tried every imaginable variation of  settings on the iPad.  He tried every possible adjustment of the projector with absolutely no success.  Exasperated,  I went into the crowd in search of the brother who had advised me which adapter to purchase.  I knew he had successfully shown a Keynote presentation with his iPad on the chapel projector.  I asked for his help and he willingly came up to the pulpit.  
He took one look at the setup and simply said, “Did you press play?”  Alas, with a red face I had to admit that I had not pressed play, not that the arrow before me was anything but obvious!  My delight with the successful projection of slide 1 overshadowed my embarrassment for being so dumb. The irony is, of course, that I had figured out all of the complexities, but in the end was stumped by the most simple of all the steps in the process.  Upon pondering the situation later, the words of Proverbs 3: 5-6 came very clearly to mind.
 5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding;
 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. 
When left to our own devices, we inevitably will forget to "press play".  How we need the Lord!  I had in my human wisdom turned the simplest of steps into something highly complex.  Then I looked again at my first test slide and realized that the simple truth on that slide should not and shall not be made complex.  It is the simplest yet the greatest of truths.
16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
(Comments, corrections, suggestions or rebuttals are welcome.  My email link is contained in “About me:  view my complete profile” to the right of this page or use the comment section below which requires that you have a Google account. All are welcome to follow me on Twitter at


  1. I am blessed with many things. Today, I find out that that list is growing. The thought that you are on a health upcurve makes my heart sing.
    The good book gives us the basic instructions before leaving earth. b.i.b.l.e.
    In most things i think through music and the song Jesus take the wheel comes to mind.
    For myself, the trick is to not pull it from His hands.

  2. Thank you so much Jim. I truly appreciate your thoughts and the fact that you are in a upcurve yourself.