“Christianity is a relationship, not a religion.” When we hurt; rules, guidelines, and comments don’t ease the pain. Trust, commitment, and being present do. Finding out about sickness or loss can bring an ache into our heart that only a relationship with our Redeemer will start to ease. Being surrounded by a God who cares and listens gives great relief to the aching soul. Have a blessed day!!
This morning I sent Joanna and my dad a picture of a wheelchair accessible pickup. This is something that we have looked for and something I dream about on a regular basis. One day I hope to have one! They say, “Where your heart is, there will your home be as well.” Not that living in a pickup down by the river would be any better than a “living in a van down by the river,” but where I set my heart spiritually is much more important. If my heart is dwelling on pure, unadulterated, eternal things then I will have a home, here and heavenly, that will be eternally pure and in the presence of God. We must be very careful of letting ourselves get preoccupied with temporary, shiny, or new things. While God created us to be able to enjoy pleasure, have fun, and love life, placing any self gratification above Him elevates ourselves above God and that is way out of our league. Have a blessed day!!
Power is empowering. When loosing weight the biggest hold up for most people is the doubt that such a goal could actually happen. “What happens if I try and then fail?” This is why diets work so well. “Follow these steps and you can loose weight too!” Having a known plan to follow empowers us and every result we see empowers us more. Now, what of we wanted to get more spiritually fit? Jesus tells us what to do, He has ways to progress our spiritual growth. One that is mentioned in Matthew 6 is fasting. Do we know our own strength in Christ (“With Christ all things are possible”)? If we do not practice the self control that God is willing to give us then we will loose it. Have a blessed day!!
Most holy God we come to You as the One True and Living God. Here we are, living one day at a time, use our lives today to further Your kingdom where we live. Thank You for the people who make up Your church who encourage us and share with us in our joys and sorrows. Father we depend on You in every way and it goes beyond our words to describe how much we need You. May our life make a bold statement of our need and appreciation for You. God, You know our struggles and You understand that we are searching for purpose and strength to finish strong. Help us forgive our family, friends, and enemies when they hurt us and give us Your power to find ourselves in Your will. As we find where we are to be, Lord reign in us that we would overcome temptation. Amen. Have a blessed day!!
There comes a time in every persons life that they have to do something they would rather not do. This post is one of those posts. While going through the sermon on the mount it is expected that conscience readers will come upon verses that will make their walk with God closer. With that said, who are you trying to please? When I post photographs, status updates, or videos through text, Facebook or Instagram what is my motivation? The likes and comments are a huge encouragement to me but I sometimes get caught up in wanting more. If I loose my focus in sharing my life with people from glorifying God to “How many likes did I get today.” Then I need to carefully examine my thinking and habits. What makes your ego swell? Whose praise brightens your day?
Does anyone else get mixed up sometimes in thinking that the Bible commands us to not have enemies? God has much to say about enemies but never says that you will not have one or some. There will be some on our enemy list who are there for a long time like people who spitefully use us for their own gain even taking what may have been rightfully ours. We have some who are only there for a short while, like the old lady or friend who freely lets us know how much weight we are carrying around now a days. And sometimes we are our own worst enemy. When we encounter such people is where God has the most to say about our enemies. God, give us strength to love our enemies. When I see someone who has hurt me give me the opportunity to help them. When I feel the pain of a hurtful comment or action give me the patience to talk to You about the situation. Amen. Have a blessed day!!!
In the first century there were problems with fake Christians and false teachers and today there seems to be an over abundance of them as well. In the first century there was a sure fire way to tell who was fake from who was a faithful Christian. Faithful Christians received the word of God with all of its power, His Holy Spirit, and in full conviction. Today it is just as easy to spot those in Christ. When the word of God has power over my life in what I do, how I act or treat my friends or enemies, where I spend my time, or what I think about. If I do not quench the Spirit by doing things my own way in my finances or worship, or if I have a strong conviction that leads to humility in accepting God’s grace and plan for my life. God help us to stand out as people who live with Your power to have joyful, peaceful, and gentile lives fueled by a strong conviction found in your grace. Amen. Have a blessed day!
Six years ago today, Friday, August 15, 2008, I lost a friend and man I looked up to as my mentor as a husband to his wife and a father to his kids. We spent the day in conversation about knowing who to marry, raising kids, and about the way God leads those who listen. That day my life changed forever physically, but what I miss most are the times that I heard him answer his phone every morning saying, “Hello momma!” To his wife as she woke up, the joy he had in telling me about Avery and Cooper, and the passionate example he set as a Christian for his babies and wife. I’m glad that I got to see it first hand and I treasure every moment that I learned from him. God thank you for putting such special people in our lives who teach us how to live like Jesus through their everyday life. Let me remember to live every moment on purpose never forgetting that life on this side can end so suddenly. Amen.
In this world of contracts, terms & agreements, and other legally binding documents it seems that some have made a game of trying to get out of being personally responsible for their actions. Long gone are the days of shaking hands and taking a man at his word for most living today. We all struggle to follow through with commitments from time to time but Jesus made extra effort to do what He said He was going to do, and so should we. When making a commitment to a friend, spouse, child, or parent I should be extra careful of my promises. If I say I can be there or do that, then an excuse later on won’t cut it. God, help us to live as men and women of integrity doing what we say. Give us strength to not over promise ourselves to those around us by saying no when it is needed, so that Your glory would be seen instead of disappointment. Amen. Have a blessed day!
One of the easiest things to join in on is talking with friends or acquaintances about friends, family, or strangers failures and shortcomings. When things are not exactly right we tend to find others “who know much more than those who are in control” and point out what is lacking or how we would handle the situation better. While making sure that the job is done right we can be insensitive of the heart, soul, and pride that others may be putting into and taking in their job. Jesus dealt with many who were wrong but never insulted them or took part in sharing barely/half/or mostly truths about them or anyone else. God help me to be careful about basing my opinion about those closest to me and even strangers on their failures. Give me the courage to know that I am saved by the same grace that can see past their mistakes. Amen. Have a blessed day!!