Recently, I flew from Fort Lauderdale to the West Coast where I was to speak at a convention in the San Francisco Bay area. Sure enough, I awoke the following morning at 5:55 A.M.
The only problem was that I was still on East Coast time. The little red numerals on the clock radio in my hotel room greeted me with 2:55 A.M.! I tried my best to go back to sleep, to no avail. Finally, I reached for the television remote control and flicked on the tube.
It doesn’t matter where you are in America or what time of the day or night it might be, there are always two things you can get on television: world championship wrestling and religious programming. And there they were in living color at three in the morning in Oakland. (And by the way, the world is asking the same question about them both—“Is it real, or is it fake?”)
Honestly, I could not take either one at that hour, so I got up and went to a desk by the window to work on some projects in my briefcase. I reached for the switch on the desk lamp and turned it on, but nothing happened. So I began a little detective work. I came to the brilliant conclusion that the lamp had only three possible points of connection.
First, I looked at the source. It was plugged in. Next I checked the switch. It was turned on. There was only one other possibility: the socket. Bingo! The bulb was not screwed down tightly into the socket. I gave it a couple of turns, and there was light.
Life is a lot like that lamp. Add up all our relationships and they boil down to three dimensions.
First, we have a relationship with God. This is the upward connection, or the Source. We have an innate longing to connect with the Source, to be plugged in to the only power that can give our lives meaning.
Second, we have a relationship with ourselves. This is the inward connection, the switch. To be happy and effective in life, we must have the proper self-respect and self-love.
Finally, we have relationships with others, in the home, the office, and the social arena. This is the outward connection, or the socket. To light up the lives of those around us, we need to be in right relationship with ourselves, with others, and with God. I like to call it the art of connecting.
Tearing Down Walls and Building Bridges, O.S. Hawkins, Pgs. 3-4, Thomas Nelson Publishers, c1995