Friday, December 2, 2011

Our Main Focus

I was watching something on TV today, it was a Christian show called, Praise The Lord, when something struck me.  I've been doing it wrong all along.  I've been doing things for others, but my focus in doing them was wrong.  Instead of doing things for others to get recognition from them, I should be doing everything I do as unto the Lord.  I shouldn't be looking for recognition from the people that I do things for, but I should be looking to God for everything.  When I do something for another person, I should do the best job that I can do, with my eyes toward heaven, and fixed on Jesus.  If I do things with a worldly point of view then I will be disappointed, because the world isn't always as thankful, and ready to be greatful for the things that I might do.

I also think that if we look at worship as a once a week thing that we do on Sunday morning, then we are going to be greatly limited in our walk with the Lord.  Worship should be an everyday, every minute thing.  We should go about our day and give our whole being, and day to the Lord as an act of worship every day.  Worship is not just about singing Praise to the Lord, but it's is all about an attitude.  It's all about having our being completely consumed by the Lord, and doing His will.  

I must say that I've been looking at this incorrectly for quite some time, and I need to make some changes in the way I see things, and how I do things.  I need a complete attitude change.  Not only do I need to do everything I do as unto the Lord, I need to do everything I do as an act of worship.  God is Good.  Thank you Lord for helping me to see this, and help me to make these changes.  Amen!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Forgiveness--You've heard the term forgive and forget... I've always wondered how that could be done, but now I realize that forget doesn't mean that you should forget that it ever happened, it's more of a thing where you leave the pain, anger, and what ever other bad feelings you might have behind and go forward.  If we try to wipe something from our memory like God does, we will be frustrated, because that's not possible.  We can, however, put it behind us, and it can be used in a positive way to help others who might be going through the same thing.  Forgiveness is something that we all must do in order to live a victorious life.  I remember having a long period of unforgiveness, which brought about bitterness, anger, resentment, and finally depression.  Only when I started forgiving did I start finding my way out of the dark hole I found myself in.

Matthew 18:22
Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.

Matthew 18:35
So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.

So God doesn't like it when we are unforgiving.  There is a condition of forgiveness.  If we don't forgive then He doesn't forgive.

Reading for Reflection....

Never tire of forgiving, and so give the devil no hold.  Be merciful and compassionate, spontaneously and whole heartedly.  The Lord forgives you all day long;  in the silence of your heart, then, do the same, untiringly and sincerely.  ~From The Jerusalem Community Rule of Life by Pierre-Marie Delfieny.

We are not compassionate, forgiving people simply by reason of our birth.  We learn to forgive as we learn to love, beginning with early role models, continuing through life experiences and with reflection on the ways in which we respond.  Compassion is not a gift.  It is an attractive quality that we may wish to choose for our lives.  Like courage, it is born of a series of choices we make to forgive or not forgive, to love or not to love.  Courage, along with love and forgiveness, shows itself in adversity.  ~From Growing Strong at Broken Places by Paula Ripple.

My thoughts--Forgiveness is an interesting thing.  Without it there is no healing.  The way I see it healing starts with forgiveness and a willingness to put the hurt and pain behind us, and move forward.  Once we've been able to do so, then we are much better prepared to help other through to a place of healing.  Jesus forgave all the way to the point of death and beyond.  Because of that, I should be able to forgive others.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

It's Broken, But It's Beautiful

This all started with something a friend of mine said to me while we were walking on the beach this week.  She said as we looked at a broken shell on the ground, "It's broken, but it's still beautiful."  That statement hit me and I pondered it the rest of the afternoon.

I think that at the point when we become our most vulnerable and open to God and what he has to say is when we are broken and on our face before him.  We may be in a broken state, but what he see's is beauty, because he can see his plan for us, and he can see that we have become pliable, and moldable, and he can start his work in us.

You see, if we never come to a point where we become broken, and spilled out, then we never become soft enough for God to transform us into the person that we are to be.  No one ever see's what's inside, and the beauty of the Lord will never shine out from us.  If you are in a place of brokenness right now, know that you are beautiful.  You may not be able to see it, but God does, and others do also.  
Broken And Spilled Out by Steve Green

Perseverance or Patience

James 1:2-4
New International Version (NIV)
 2 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 1:2-4
King James Version (KJV)
 2My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;
 3Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.
 4But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

I put both versions, because one says perseverance, and the other says patience.  I like the word perseverance here, although the word patience is a good word also.

Perseverance is an interesting thing to me.  It's the hardest thing to do, but yet without it you don't learn and grow to maturity in faith.  The way we learn perseverance is when we go through trials.  The Lord may test my faith at times, but holding on and keeping faith and persevering through the trial will make my faith stronger, because I an exercising it.

Faith isn't just believing that God is who he says he is.  Faith is believing that he can do what he says he can do, and trusting him to do it.  Faith is continuing to trust even when you don't think you can continue, because you want an answer now, or you don't understand why God has said no.  It takes persevering through trials in order to make this faith grow.

Word of Jesus

John 3:14-17
 14And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up:
 15That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
 16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

John 3:16 is probably one of the most used verses in the Bible.  It's the first verse that I ever learned by heart.  I find the verse after it, verse 17, to have a great deal of significance also.  He wasn't sent to condemn the world, but that the wourl might, through him, be saved.  Jesus knew what his purpose was, and why he was here, and I believe in these 4 verses, he was telling Nicodemus what that purpose was.  I believe there was a purposed to everything he said and did while he was here on earth.  In this little talk with Nicodemus he seems to have revealed that purpose to Nicodemus.

In verses 14-17 Jesus pretty much lays out the plan God has for his life.   When he says, "evenso must the Son of man be lifted up", he was talking about himself on the cross, and then in 15 and 16 he talks about what the benefit for man would be.  That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life.  Then he goes on to say that he wasn't there to condemn, but to save.  

Every time I read these verses, I am reminded of what Jesus did on the cross, and the sacrifice he made so that I could be reconsiled with God the Father.  He didn't have to do it, but he did, because he loved us so much.  His love for us is what held him to the cross, and it's why we can have a personal, and vital relationship with God, not just God the Father, but with God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit also.  

It starts with having faith enough to believe that Jesus died for our sins, and that through Him we have eternal life.  It starts with letting him take the wheel and letting him drive us in the direction that he needs us to go, and trusting him for the strength, endurance, and faith to make it through.