Friday, January 20, 2017

Pledge: Stop debating on Social Media

“Jesus traveled through all the towns and villages of that area, teaching in the synagogues and announcing the Good News about the Kingdom. And he healed every kind of disease and illness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭9:35-36‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I'm addicted to social media. I love politics and news, I can't get enough. But, in 2017, I have pledged to stop debating people on social media. So far so good. I have compassion for people. My only desire is they know Jesus. How can I tell them about Jesus if we have a political barrier between us? I will never be able to force someone to change their minds. My only hope is to show, by example, the love of Jesus. 

Stop debating and arguing about "stuff" on social media. Use that tool to show God's love. If it is not uplifting and supportive, don't post it. I have passed up multiple opportunities to continue the rhetoric from the election. I haven't changed my views, I'm just not going to build a wall between me and those that I disagree with. Show compassion, work to serve, love, and honor others, just like Jesus!

Monday, January 16, 2017

My prayer

“For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭5:8-9‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The time is almost here. Inauguration Day, the day this wonderful country smoothly transitions power from one leader to another. We are told live as people of light and I want to celebrate this event with prayer.

We all know how contentious this election has been. Our country is divided, but Christians can not be divided. We all know God is in charge. We know the ultimate victory has been won. The battles of this earth are meaningless. But, we can pray for the people. We can pray for our leaders. So today I do that. I ask you to join me in genuine, heartfelt prayer for Donald J Trump.

Dear Lord, I am humbled by your presence in my life. You have allowed me to live in, maybe,  the greatest country on this planet. Friday we swear in our 45th president. We know that he only has power you grant. He has no knowledge, no wisdom of his own. Fill him Lord, with your love, mercy, and grace. Give him a clear mind with one purpose, to unite our country under you.  Let the Holy Spirit rest on his shoulders, guiding him through these next four years. May he feel the needs of the poor, the disenfranchised, and the lost. May his actions serve the needs of all Americans. Give him the strength that brings about a world peace. Help him to avoid war and conflict whenever possible. Help him to lead our military with your wisdom and when they are called to serve to watch over them. Protect our new president and his family from those who are blinded by anger and hate. Help him to choose his words carefully as to not anger those who are enemies while still maintaining strength and resolve to do what is right. Lord speak to him. Help him to be aware of your presence and help him to draw closer to you every day he serves this great country. We love you Lord and are honored to be your servant. Amen!

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Grow up!

“Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭4:14-16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I bet each of you can think of some adult that has never grown up. You know the type of person I'm talking about. Nothing is serious to them. Life is lived in the moment, they care only about themselves and they seem to destroy every relationship they have. They also are tossed around by every new thing that catches their eye. They lie, steal and cheat anyone. These "mature" adults act more like toddlers and kids than adults.

As a faithful follower of Jesus, we also need to grow up! We need to keep our focus on Jesus and not follow worship fads and temporary doctrine. We need to know the word of God and not count on others for our faith. We need to actively seek God, not as Santa Clais, giving gifts to anyone and everyone. We need to treat our ministry, our witness, solid and confident. We need to go through life with more than  playing as our focus. We need to help and serve others instead of us being fed with selfish motivation. We need to grow up in our faith!

When we are growing we are living when we stop growing we are dying. Praise God for life and growth in our faith!

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Resolve to eliminate hostility!

“For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups. Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:14-16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I am appalled by the video released showing the torture of a man just outside of Chicago. We are on a path that needs to end. If we can't live in peace within our own country where we share a common heritage and share the same ideals and dreams, how can we expect peace to thrive on this planet. 

We have to put and end to it now!

If Christ can bring the Jews and gentiles together, he can bring demorcats and republicans together, black and white, rich and poor, Muslim and Christian. He can bring us all together. 

How will it start?

You. You are the key. I just listened to a wonderful message from Trey Gowdy. One key point, "who has ever been convinced to change their views because of and insult." Can I ridicule you into following Christ? Can I make a liberal conservative by calling them names? Of course not! We have to stop the HOSTILITY! Make this your New Years Resolution! Do it on social media. How about resolving to not post anything hostile on facebook? How about committing to being a positive role model, lifting up people. I know it will be hard! I will be tempted to post that sarcastic post or that political slam. I'm not out to agree with everything you say. I'm still going to share my views. But will you join me in lifting up people and not all the hostility? As far as I am in control, I pledge to be positive with my life in as many ways as possible. I will love my neighbor as myself.

Please Lord help us. Do we remember that when all else fails? Love is the answer! Remind me Lord!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

But God!

But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:4-6‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The absolute bedrock of what I believe is in these verses. In our society it is not popular to take a stand, to draw a line between good and evil. We are taught there is no such thing as black and white, good and bad, right and wrong. My faith is billed as one of many ways to God. But, God, here in these verses, gives us one way to be saved. He gives us the narrow way. We must accept Jesus. We must accept we are sinners. We must accept the only path to eternal life is through the power of God's grace.

We do not deserve eternal life. We have sinned and we are sinners. Who amongst you have not denied God? Which one of you have not tried to control your own life instead of letting God? We have all rejected God's plans. We ignore the path before us to pursue greed, self interest, and pleasure. Since the beginning of time we are all, like me, sinners. Our sins have killed us. There is nothing we can do to recover from what we have done. But God, through Jesus sets us in the heavenly realms to be with him forever. It is only through Jesus death, for sins he did not commit, that we are saved and given eternity!

Praise God for his perfect love!