Thursday, December 27, 2012

Painful Reminder

Last night I went to bed with back pain.  This morning I awoke with even more discomfort making me realize that I have a kidney infection.  This isn't the first time.  This could have been prevented.  You see, I have over indulged in sugar yet again and now I am reaping the consequences.  It is a painful reminder that we will reap what we sow (see Galatians 6:7).

Now I know that sugar is not the greatest analogy for sin.  After all, sugar in and of itself is NOT sinful.  However, it did remind me of the truth that followers of Christ cannot engage in the things of the world and not be affected.  We kid ourselves, though, don't we?  Just like I was kidding myself every time I picked up a chocolate almond cluster and shoved it into my mouth.  I thought, "A little bit won't hurt me" and "It's only during the holidays", but after several trips to the candy dish, a little become too much and now I am in more than a little discomfort.

Thankfully, there is a cure.  I know what needs to be done to get well.  First of all, I must STOP eating and drinking things with sugar in them.  Second, I need to drink a LOT of water.  And third, I need take the homeopathic treatments that have helped me in the past.  If I do these things, I'm confident I will get well.

Spiritually speaking, I also know what needs to be done to be well and stay well.  First, I need to repent of any sin in my life: "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" (1 John 1:9).  Second, I need to drink of the Living Water - a LOT, and third I need to pray so that I can be in communication with God, Who has helped me in the past.

A painful reminder of simple truths. 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

His Gospel is Peace

One of my all-time favorite Christmas songs is O Holy  Night!  The second verse is one reason why that is so:

Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace. 
Chains shall He break, for the slave is our brother, 
And in His name all oppression shall cease.  
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we;
Let all within us praise His holy name. 
Christ is the Lord! 
O praise His name forever! 
His power and glory evermore proclaim! 
Just recently a horrific event made headlines in America and across the world.  A school shooting in Sandy Hook, CT claimed the lives of 27 people, mostly children.  It's times like these that makes a person look inside and wonder just what can bring someone to such depravity.  Many times, and this time is no exception, people flock to churches in search of answers, comfort and peace.  Yes, God is the God of comfort and peace.  It saddens me that it takes a tragedy to remind people of that.  However, He never turns people away when they seek Him.  He is faithful.  He is our strong tower.  He is our refuge.
Jesus Christ is the Prince of Peace!  His gospel IS peace!  Knowing this is not enough, however.  You must confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead - then you will be saved (see Romans 10:9). 

So why am I talking about a Christmas song and a school shooting in the same post? Because if we will proclaim the Gospel of Christ to everyone we meet, they will have the opportunity to hear the good news of peace and accept it.  If they do accept it, that is one less person who will feel there is no other choice but to take innocent lives and then their own.  When man has no hope, he has no respect for life.  Not his own nor anyone else. 

Mankind does not originate from animals.  Mankind was created in the image of God and every person has worth.  Everyone has value.  Everyone has a purpose.  That purpose is to worship God, our creator.  It really does not get any more simple than that.  

Sunday, December 2, 2012

I Want More!

This morning I felt the Holy Spirit stirring within me, compelling me to approach my God in earnest prayer.  Even now, I still feel the Spirit moving me to act.  Sharing on this blog is a miniscule way, but I believe it's one way that pleases Him.

There is so much more that God wants OF us and FOR us (the Church)!  We are cheating ourselves out of witnessing God's miracles because we are content with complacency.  He desires to show us things, tell us things that we do not know: "Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." Jeremiah 33:3

God is a god of miracles! He need only speak and galaxies explode into splendor! He breathed life into a dusty form and man awoke to life!  The earth is filled with His majesty and yet we go about our daily lives barely taking notice of our Divine Maker.

Jesus performed miracles on a daily basis during His earthly ministry.  He said that we (His disciples) would be able to do even greater things! (see John 14:12) Jesus knew that after His death, burial, and resurrection He would extend that power to everyone who would believe in Him and confess Him as Lord!  (see Romans 10:9-10).  He knew that the Holy Spirit would come and fill us up with HIS power to continue His miracle-filled ministry on earth! (see Ephesians 3)

But we seem to think that those days are over.  Now is the time to sit back and enjoy our salvation, but nothing more.  We are not moved to reach out to the lame, the deaf or the blind.  We don't believe that God wants to do any more miracles.  If we did believe that, then we would be crying out to Him to do these very things through US for the glory of Christ!

Jesus did not spend His time on Earth quietly sitting in the temple listening to man's interpretation of the Scriptures.  He lived the Scriptures!

He attended to the needs of the sick, the dying - even the dead!  He rebuked demons and they had to release their victims.  He healed those with physical and spiritual infirmities.  He loved on people and told them how to find God for themselves personally.  I want to do that!  I want the Holy Spirit to move in me and move me to action!

God, help me, I want more!