Connection Check

Guest Post by Laurel Ferrell

My husband and I bought a used pop-up camper a few years ago. During COVID, we had the “opportunity” to rebuild the roof entirely after we noticed a leak causing damage to the camper. Thankfully, my husband is very handy and was able to figure out not only the rebuilding of the roof but how to make sure the electricity ran to the overhead lights and our newly installed air conditioner.

This April, we took our camper out for its first trip of the year. The new roof had worked great since the rebuild, and we expected a non-eventful setup process. Once we got set up, however, we realized that while the overhead lights were working, everything below waist-level on the camper wasn’t getting any power. That means the fridge, microwave, and all the electrical outlets were unusable.

We assumed that since the lights were working, the issue must be inside the camper somewhere. While it was great to be able to see each other, we needed power flowing to everything, not just the lights. So my husband sprang into action, trying to troubleshoot what the problem could be. He meticulously went through every fuse on the box, taking out each one, checking it, and replacing them—still, no power.

After an hour or so of troubleshooting, he went outside and checked the cable where the camper plugs into the power. After unplugging it and plugging it back in, all the power came on. It turns out there was some dirt and spiderwebs in the outlet box preventing the cable from getting a full connection to the power.

This scenario accurately represents how we troubleshoot the loss of Kingdom power in our lives. So many of us are walking around with only some power. Our lights are on. From the outside, everything looks normal. But inside, where we need power most, it is lacking. We can’t keep our food cold. Others can’t draw power from us because we don’t have enough. 

It takes what little current we have just to keep the lights on.

Many of us fall into the trap of checking the fuses. We want to swap out a house, a job, a ministry, or even a spouse. We think that if that “fuse” changes, we will feel the full current of power running through us again. However, the source of the power isn’t the fuse. The source of the power comes from outside the camper. We can change fuses every day, but if the spiderwebs of life are blocking our connection to the source, we will never get the power we need.

“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence.” 2 Peter 1:3

How do we stay connected to this power? 

The easy answer is that we stay connected to Him. The Lord wants us to have the power to acquire the things we need for life, to be excellent like Him, but we do this through getting to know Him more. Just like a plug has three prongs, we get this power in different ways. The first is through reading His Word. We gain knowledge by knowing what He has spoken. We have to keep the Word of God hidden in our hearts, like a wiring diagram showing us how the different elements in our life work. 

The second way to stay connected is through prayer. God is still speaking to us today, and He has direct insight into how to troubleshoot the challenges we encounter in life. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” We need God to explain to us even our own thoughts and intentions! A new job can’t give us that kind of insight. A change in circumstances may delay our own dissatisfaction, but it will return the next time we need to power something other than the lights. We can’t sustain our lives on our own batteries. That power always runs out. 

The third way to stay connected to power is through the community of other believers. Sometimes we get lost trying to figure out things on our own. Sometimes the answer is simpler than we even think. Staying connected to others helps us to hear God’s voice in a different way. 

“And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.”
1 Thessalonians 5:14

If you see that your brother or sister in Christ is struggling with power in their life, step alongside them and see if you can guide them back to the source. Don’t assume that just because they have lights, everything is working correctly. Anyone can fake it for a Sunday morning. It takes really walking in community and “doing life” with people that we get to experience how God is moving and working in their environment. 

When all else fails, check for spiderwebs. 

What in your life could be blocking your connection with the Lord? It might be unpleasant to try to clean that stuff out, but it’s the only way we get a good connection. Is there one prong of your plug to the Lord that is suffering? Maybe you are great at quiet times and reading the Word, but no one in your life really knows your dreams and your struggles. Reach out and find the community that you need. Take the time to read His Word. Listen to what He wants to speak to you today in prayer. 

Published by Shawn McCarthy

While serving as the Weekend Experience Pastor at Seacoast Church, I felt God prompting me to share the moments when He would speak His truth into my life through scripture in a way that made sense to me, giving me tangible ways to learn, grow and lead. These promptings turned into weekly emails that I would send my small groups and volunteer teams. I found myself enjoying the process of digging deeper into God’s Word, being stretched by the writing process, and encouraging others in the faith. My lovely wife, Anna, challenged me to begin this blog, so these moments that I have come to call, my “Red-Letter Moments,” can find a home. My prayer is that you will find hope, comfort, and inspiration here, and above all, you will come to know that the God of the universe loves you and desires a personal relationship with you.”

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