Wednesday, January 25, 2006

It was HIM that whole time? (Psalms 66)

A good friend of mine told me to read this passage. It opened up my eyes a little bit to something new. What really caught my eyes was verses 8-12. David begins it by giving thanks and blessings to God. Why? Because God had afflicted Him, had tested Him, had put Him through FIRE and water. Wait a minute! God is the one who puts affliction on us? I thought God loved us.

Well, He does. Part of His loving us is shaping us and molding us to be and to do what He has created us to do. He makes us go through trials and tribulations because He knows it is good for us. Yes, I understand that at times Satan does attack us and wants us to stumble, but who lets him do that?
We tend to complain. I’m a complainer. There have been certain afflictions I have asked God to take away, and for some reason or other, He hasn’t. I’ll find out later I suppose. But look at Jesus. He suffered immense pain on the cross for us. Remember what He said in the garden of Gethsemene? He wanted this "cup to pass before [Him.]" He knew that He was going to suffer. If God had spared Jesus from all that pain, we would be lost.

God has a plan and purpose and all this. You may be going through trials (I do EVERYDAY) but God wants to bless you in those things. Take time to thank Him. Look at a Job for a moment. After all those things he went through, don’t you think that perhaps his walk with the Lord was stronger than it already was? Our attitute with life usually reflects our walk with the Lord. Take 5 minutes today to spend time with the Lord.
He really does care.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Hurt, Pain...Blessings, Mercy (Psalms 13)

Have there been times when we feel like God isn’t answering our prayers? Times that no matter how much we cry to Him, it seems as though He doesn’t help us? I know I do. Other times I feel like Satan is attacking me, and all I can do is curl up into a pathetic little ball while he kicks me time and time again. Why does God do these things? First off, God has an awesome plan for our life. There are 2 choices. One, we aren’t walking right with Him. If we don’t hear His voice, or even know Him that well, then why do we expect Him to help us? Choice 2 is, we are walking but this whole thing is part of God molding us and teaching us to trust in Him.

Yes, I am a human. And I have been struggling with a few things. Time and time again, I have asked God to take these things away from me, but he has not. God has not told me why He hasn’t taken it away from me. But I know He has told me to trust Him. Despite everything, despite the pain and the hurt, I know God is going to make it all come to good one way or another. And yes, despite the pain and hurt in this situation, God has been blessing me.

Verses 5 and 6:

5 But I have trusted in Your mercy;

My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.

6 I will sing to the Lord,

Because He has dealt bountifully with me.

God has dealt bountifully! Look around you, what has He blessed you with. For me, God has been giving me wonderful opportunities to serve in ministry, and I totally love it! I know for sure that God has called me to ministry, and to be able to do it at a young age like this is an honor. I look at God’s mercy. I deserve to die! But yet He saved me from my sin, from going to eternal death in hell. I need to trust in His mercies today…

You need to trust in His mercies today.

P.S. For those of you who don't have your Bible handy, I included a link to the passage (that's what the "Read It" link is)

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Paul's Testimony (Acts 22:1-21)

Paul’s testimony is awesome. I’m not talking about how he met Jesus, although it would be awesome to be knocked over by Jesus and then have Him talking to you. No, I’m talking about the change and how awesome it was. Paul was one of the most religious men in the synagogue of his day. He knew the law forwards and backwards. He also hated Christians the most; he went around everywhere with special permission from the Jewish leaders that authorized him to kill Christians as he wished.
But God had different plans for him. In just one moment, a change took place. Paul realized that what he was doing was wrong, but that wrong wasn’t against Christians, but that the wrong was against God himself. And God had a special plan for him. He was appointed to "know His will, to see the righteous one, and to hear the sound of his voice." He was also to be a "witness for Him to all people what [he] had seen and heard." Paul was so excited that he wanted dot march out to the Jewish leaders and tell them what he had heard! But God was like "Hey wait a minute, not yet! They’ll kill you if you go out there, and you’re not supposed to die yet!" Paul obediently obeyed.
Look at what God appointed Paul to do. Is that not also our calling? We are called to Live for Jesus, to walk close to Him, to know his voice, to know His will. And He gave us a great commission: to tell everyone about the good news of Jesus! That’s what God wants us to do. Sure maybe, that doesn’t tell us what we’re going to be when we grow up, or who we are going to marry, but if we walk close God and know His voice, then we’ll know exactly what He wants! We’ll be able to hear him better. Isn’t that cool? God wants to talk to us, and He wants to tell us His will! God is our friend, He knows whats best for us, and He wants us to do it. It’s our responsibility to walk with Him and talk with Him. Who wouldn’t talk to their best friend?
‘Cause that’s what Jesus is.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

I am a human...

I'm a Christian. And you know what? Life isn't perfect. A Christian's life shouldn't be. You know why? It's because we are human.

Most people fall away from Christianity because a) they think that Christianity is going to make all their problems go away, or b) they would rather live for their flesh than for Jesus Christ.

Lately I have been struggling. This is a personal battle and if I told you, you would begin shouting "TMI! TMI!" (For those of you who don't know, that stands for "too much information.") I am a Human. If I make a promise, I will most likely break it. Not because I want to, but because as a human, things in life come up, and I may forget.

I fail God half the time. I tell Him that I'm going to live for him, but I end up failing. I feel guilty and sad that I fail, but God understands my condition. He looks at my heart and says, "I see that although you fail, you are willing to get back on your feet and start over again." God forgives me each time I falter. He always does.

My run with God was starting to become a walk. I was lagging, but yet He has stood by me the whole time. He is a God that love you and me and wants the best for us. He wants us to admit that we have a problem of being putrid sinful people, and that we need His help.

I am willing to admit that...

...are you?