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Apologetics

Apologetics:

What is Apologetics? No it doesn’t mean how to apologize for doing something stupid. Apologetics is defined as the following, “reasoned arguments or writings in justification of something, typically a theory or religious doctrine.” Why is this important you ask? Well, I’m glad you did, because as a Christian this is tremendously important. How do we share the gospel to those who believe in something different? The study of apologetics will allow you the ability to mount a plausible and reasonable defense. Recently I have found that as well as I know scripture, and as well as I am able to articulate coherent thought, the art of apologetics is still something to be studied and practiced on a regular basis. I have found it difficult for me to not explain what Christianity is, but rather why Christianity is the truth. Many people struggle with this aspect of their faith. It’s not that they doubt their faith to be truth, it’s that they don’t know how to articulate Christianity. First thing that must happen is you pray, you need to pray that God will give you the words and that God will open the heart of the person, or people you’re talking to. For me, as the personality type INTJ, I use facts in every single argument I make. I don’t argue unless I know those facts to be true, and that I know for sure I’m right in that particular argument. If I’m not right, I stay away from the argument, and if I’m not sure, I research facts first. The problem with facts is, no matter the facts I can present about the truth and Gospel of Jesus Christ, people just don’t accept facts as truth. For an INTJ this can be incredibly frustrating.

The Facts:

  • Scripture was written over a 1400-year time span by many different authors and without much influence by previous writings.
  • Physical evidence proves the existence of many characters from biblical account.
  • Scriptures accounts of Creation mirrors the account attributed to the ‘Big Bang’ in many ways. Although the timeline doesn’t match up, the process is still the same. Scripture was written long before the theory of the big bang.
  • Jesus Christ lived, and was crucified for blaspheming and as a threat to those in power.
  • 13 people saw Jesus Christ’s miracles and teachings every day. Thousands saw Christ throughout his ministry. The Roman Empire failed to prove Christ was a fake. Christianity survived the largest most powerful force on the planet.
  • The soldiers at the tomb would have been elite Roman Centurions and knew failure meant death.
  • Even after the tomb Jesus was seen by over 400 people, still performing miracles. The Roman Empire tried to quiet the movement but was unable to because everyone they interrogated preferred death over lying about what they saw and experienced.
  • Paul, known as Saul at the time was a high ranking member in the Jewish synagogues and was responsible for persecuting the church. He was responsible for murdering Christians hunted them with extreme ferocity. Saul experienced a life changing event on the road to Damascus where he was struck blind. There were eyewitnesses to the account. Paul experienced a radical 180 in his beliefs after that event. He went from being one of the most feared men in all of Christianity to one of the loudest voices for Christianity.
  • Each of the Apostils faced execution for their positions on Christ. Prior to execution and during stays in jail these men were tortured and beaten beyond our ability to understand in 1stworld countries. Floggings were common, and the wounds from being flogged would have been deep and long lacerations across their entire back. Each of the men would have been given the opportunity to recant their statements, denounce Christianity and go along their way. Neither of them changed or recanted their stories, not once.
  • Many believe in the conspiracy theory that the stories about Christ were made up and rehearsed to add a new religion to the world. This however is easy to debunk when you consider what is needed to keep a conspiracy alive. Even today conspiracies usually fall apart within hours of being captured because no one wants to take the fall. When multiple people are captured and to get information from them torture is used, how many people would undergo torture for a lie? How many people would be able to give the same story over and over again never once wavering on the details, especially under torture. The reason torture is so ineffective in today’s world is because people will tell you anything you want to hear, just to stop the pain. This never happened with any of the Apostles. The Romans wanted to break Christianity and stop the uprising and were willing to do it any way possible, to include under Nero having Christians sentenced to die in the arena during his games. These games often included death by exotic animals to include tigers. Had any of the Apostles or eyewitnesses of Christ recanted their stories, the Romans would have capitalized on it, yet no one did. Further more, even if one were able to withstand the torture, how many people would be willing to die for a lie? These men saw with their own eyes the power of Christ.

There are many more reasons to believe that Christianity is the real deal. Eyewitness accounts and the facts that Scripture has withstood years of scrutiny from some of the most dedicated atheists and yet, many of those atheists have since converted to Christianity because the evidence showed them the opposite of what they aimed to prove. One such individual is Los Angeles Cold Case Detective J. Warner Wallace. http://coldcasechristianity.com  Another is A Case For Christ by Lee Strobel. Both men tell their incredible journey from Atheist to Christianity. These powerful stories can be heard over and over again as atheists and other faiths have left their long standing beliefs behind in exchange for the truth and salvation of Jesus Christ the savior of mankind. I myself have experienced the presence of God on more then one occasion but one event stands out above the rest.

A couple years ago I was bleeding out from a self inflicted gunshot wound. I was unconscious in less then a minute as the bullet went through my lung. I was loosing blood quickly and as I was starting to turn grey and purple the paramedics didn’t expect me to survive the trip to the hospital. As clear as any waking moment I recall telling God I was sorry. The response would forever change my life. I heard the Lord say, “You’re Forgiven.” The words themselves were powerful, and felt like a jolt of electricity rush through me. (No I was never hit with the paddles) I instantly awoke in the ambulance to the shock of the EMS team working on me. After hearing the voice of God I wanted nothing more then to ‘go home’. God it seems kept me alive and forgave me of my sins for a purpose. That purpose would be found not long ago, but even that event would serve as an experience I would be able to use in my ministry and my walk with Christ.

As a Christian we are obligated to study and learn the word of God. We are told to take scripture into our hearts and minds and live what we learn. When we follow the Great Commission we will encounter those of all faiths and all levels within those faiths. We must learn how to articulate the truth without exaggeration, and without watering down the truth. You will never be able to talk someone into Christianity, because anyone who can be talked into it will be talked out of it. Facts only hold so much weight for the non-believer so share the gospel, share personal experiences, a little facts, and pray God opens their hearts. We cannot save everyone because much like the matrix, everyone who’s still plugged in is apart of that system, and not everyone is ready to be unplugged.

 

 

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It’s a wonderful thing to be able to share the blessings and teachings of Christ with all of you. For those who read my works in Christ, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Recently I came across an amazing home business based in Travel and Entertainment that’s the real deal. The savings found through this business are amazing. If you shop online, like to go to movies, or travel, this gift card for you can save you up to 50%. Please enjoy your gift as a symbol of my appreciation and gratitude. God Bless.

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Hold On

Hold On:

In the course of our lives we will go through a mound of trials, one more intense then the next, but what are we really doing with those experiences. My personal experiences have left scars and those scars have been an irritant for many years. I’ve struggled most of my life with low self esteem, and that’s had a major impact on my adult life. When we go through painful events if we don’t have a strong foundation those events can start to pile up and leave us feeling self-conscious, bitter, and sometimes resentful. I know for me, I have argued with God on many nights why would He allow me to go through so much. I have often asked what I had done to deserve so many tragedies. I have been angry with God for so many people abandoning me. The thing is though, had I been more mature in my faith I would have understood the true nature of being a Christian. I would have understood that God loves us, but He is first and foremost our father. He disciplines us when we are bad, and allows us to make our own decisions, good or bad. He cries when we cry, and laughs when we laugh. Jesus Christ is always with us whether it be the green meadow, or the valley of death, the Lord is always by our side. Somewhere I lost sight of that, and begun to self-pity. I failed to realize that we are the metal, and life is the forge. We have the ability to face life with a smile on our face, or we can let life beat us down and take away our joy.

Scripture is full of promise concerning living life. We are told that life will not be easy. We are told that to be a Christian is to suffer. We are warned that we will face trials, and persecution for our faith. 1 Corinthians 4:8-9 8 “[We are] troubled on every side, yet not distressed; [we are] perplexed, but not in despair; 9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;” If we build our faith on good soil, allow Jesus Christ to fill our hearts and let it take root, we will have good fruits for our labor. We will not wither under the hot sun. When we allow Christ to be our foundation we can build our lives on that, and when the storm comes we will not loose everything. Philippians 4:13  “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”Do not become angry with God for the sins of man. Do not become bitter with God for the trials we face simply makes us stronger. In every situation both good and bad draw closer to God. Give thanks for the good times and the bad. Pray for God every day and every night and in all things bring glory to the father. 1 Peter 5:10  “But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].” We know that we are ambassadors for Christ, and to be an ambassador that means we are not on our homeland, but in a foreign land. We are not home in this world, but just passing through. That knowledge, that viewpoint allows us to grasp the true nature of this life, and understand it’s purpose. We are lowly servants to the Lord and we deserve nothing, but through grace and love we are saved. We have been shown mercy and in that mercy and love comes a cost, the cross. Christ suffered in this world for us, and for the gift of salvation the price we pay is a little suffering on our path. 1 Peter 4:12-13“Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed.”

Though we face the fiery trials we are not alone. We are the church and we must stand together and help one another bare burdens. We must lean on one another in our times of need. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too.” Christ tells us we will suffer, and he was telling all people who follow him what the future would hold. This is prophecy, and we should take heed to it. John 16:33“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”Heaven has never been free. While the price was paid in blood, it is us that must understand that Christ is the only way. Loving Christ and having faith that he is our one and only savior is how we get that golden ticket. We are tested in this world, tested if our faith is strong. We are forged in the fires and when our time comes, we will be strong, courageous, and faithful to our Lord.

Just know that following Christ was never promised to be easy. Just when you think things are going well, and you’re on a winning streak a pipe burst under the house and floods the crawl space. The Devil doesn’t want us to be happy and He wants us to turn on God and walk away. So keep the faith, deal with one problem at a time, and keep pushing forward.

 

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It’s a wonderful thing to be able to share the blessings and teachings of Christ with all of you. For those who read my works in Christ, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Recently I came across an amazing home business based in Travel and Entertainment that’s the real deal. The savings found through this business are amazing. If you shop online, like to go to movies, or travel, this gift card for you can save you up to 50%. Please enjoy your gift as a symbol of my appreciation and gratitude. God Bless.

Surgery, What Surgery?

Surgery, What Surgery?

It’s been a year, but it hardly seems like it. With so many things different now then they were a year ago, it’s hard to believe it’s been that long. My recovery from a C5/C6 spinal injury and surgery has been slow, but in that year I have grown. I push myself and although there is a consequence, I decided early in my recovery I didn’t want to allow my injury to define me. Yes, there were things that changed forever, and I would always have difficulty doing certain physical activities, but I have come farther then I imagined in a year. Ironically, as I am at my anniversary I am starting physical therapy once again.

In a year since my surgery I have learned how to surf, I have rope climbed, and I have done a 40+ mile bicycle ride on a recumbent trike. I have come far, and I trust that I will continue to grow. I know I wouldn’t be where I am today had I not pushed myself along the way. There have been days when the pain was horrible and I could barely move, and there were days when I felt like I could run a mile. The difference between having pain, and allowing that pain to control you is strength. We must learn that to grow sometimes it means to suffer a little pain but the end result is worth it.

Christ tells us those who will pick up their cross and follow Him will have trials and tribulations. They will suffer persecutions, and will undoubtedly have friends and family turn their backs on you. He tells us that love suffers long, and if we are to love Christ we to must endure the sufferings because we are just ambassadors in this land. This is not my home. My home is a Heavenly one, and to get there I walk in a land that is not my own, amongst a people that will undoubtedly hate and despise me. The beautiful thing about human beings is also the most heartbreaking thing, free will. Although my options were limited when it came to my surgery, I still had a choice. I could have done nothing and likely died of meningitis, or I could have the surgery. While it doesn’t seem like much of a choice, I could have chosen death.

In the last year I have made the choice to become much more active with the Wounded Warrior Project, in which I’ve posted about extensively. During those times I was given the distinct pleasure of meeting some amazing people, amazing veterans, and I’ve made some wonderful friends. It all started with a choice to take a chance and move out of my comfort zone. I made the choice to go on my first adventure to South Carolina and that trip changed my life. Before my South Carolina trip I went on a non WWP trip to Hawaii. I would say that trip set the tone for me to explore beyond the walls of my house. I watched as I pushed myself just months after surgery to do things I never thought I’d be able to do again. I explored my ability and found I am capable of far more then I ever gave myself credit for. A capability that without doubt has been a gift from God.

In the last year I had surgery, I moved out of my house, I lost my job… twice, due to my injury. I got divorced, yet I’m still friends with my ex. I have continued with this Blog, and now I’m back in school. Beyond all of that I am looking at my future plans within the church and continuing my biblical studies accordingly. While my career has not advanced, and I’m not living where I’d like, I feel I am exactly where I am meant to be. I also feel I’m doing exactly what God wants me to do. I have faith in my Heavenly Father, and I know that regardless of my injuries, my status, or where I live, I will be used to further glorify my Father and bring honor to his most Holy of Names. Jesus Christ has saved me time and again and I shall continue to try and be contempt in where I am. Like Paul before me, I had my own Damascus road. I can’t simply go back and undo what happened to me. I know I must continue to push through my physical and emotional pains, and find strength in my own weaknesses through Christ my Savior. No matter how low your life looks, just know that it won’t always be that way. There is always hope. On the 3rdday scripture says He rose again. The disciples before that were hopeless, they felt lost, as most of them questioned who Jesus was. He rose again, and thus proved forever who he was, and settled the word as stone. Have faith and for every season, times will move forward. Don’t loose hope because Christ is with us always till the day we are called away from this land, then we shall finally go home and truly sit with the King.

 

PSA: I will be away for a few days, and thus, this will be the last post till I return. As always, you can email me if you need anything, or you can post your prayer request on the prayer request page. Go forth and look into your life and see how God is using you, using your gift to spread the love and Gospel of Jesus Christ. Don’t let whatever is holding you back keep you from your purpose. God has created each and every one of you with a mission and know that so long as you trust and have faith in God you can do anything. Keep fighting the good fight, and I look forward to posting on Monday…. Or Tuesday.

The Life

The Life

All my life I was bullied. I was teased, picked on, and even beat up. From being pushed in the halls, to the locker room. From my books being taken, and swirleys being given. From being punched or even my things being stolen, I would endure day after day, time after time. Growing up I wasn’t the biggest person in school. Growing up I wasn’t the smartest, or the fastest. Growing up I was average for most areas of my life. Perhaps looks which I was teased a lot about was slightly below average, but no matter what others thought, I was made by God just the way he wanted me. Faith for me has always been apart of my life. I wish I could say that it was faith that carried me through, and maybe on some level it was, but I cannot stand here and say I came through stronger for it. On the contrary, although I made it through, I came out with scars. My whole life I’ve been self conscious, and I’ve had a low self esteem. I never held my achievements in high esteem because I never felt they mattered. I argued with God every night about the life I was given, and why. I argued every night that He wouldn’t deliver me from my hell. I remember one night I was 10 years old and I had recently had surgery. There were complications and unexpected physiological changes, which caused tremendous amounts of pain. I cried harder that night then I think I had any other time in my life. The pain was unbearable and as I laid next to the toilet I begged God to just kill me already. I prayed for deliverance from this life because I knew God hated me, and I was being punished. At 10 years old I had endured so much emotional pain, and physical pain, and if that was all by the age of 10 what would my life be? I knew I didn’t want to be a punching bag my whole life. I was at a cross roads and I didn’t know where to turn.

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Not long after that surgery I returned to school where I would befriend a classmate. He was always quiet and reserved, but our friendship didn’t come of our own doing. No, it would come as a compromise to a problem we faced in class. We both wanted to do our report on Abraham Lincoln so our teacher proposed we do the report together. Agreeing to her terms, we set out to do the best report we could, and after a weekend at his house I foresaw a great friendship rise. All these years later me and him are still friends, and in fact after living with them on and off for 6 years, we became brothers. Had it not been for that relationship, at that time in my life, I cannot say where I’d be now. Looking back I realized God had answered my prayer, He just didn’t do it in a way I thought he would. The weeks turned to months, and then years, and now looking back 24 years later at everything I’ve endured, I have learned one simple truth. God does not choose the strongest, or the smartest, he chooses those he knows will endure the test of time. Look at the Apostle Paul for instance. Here’s a man that hated the Christians. He persecuted them, and in his hatred and rage hunted them and in some cases executed them. Christians knew his name and were in fear of him. I think we all have our own Damascus road. Paul was chosen I feel for many reasons. First was his unique citizenship, he was both Jewish, and a Roman citizen. He knew scripture front and back, and he came with a high education, and authority. Of all these things, Paul would be able to use his past to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He would be made to endure hardships beyond our dreams. He would face physical and emotional pain the rest of his life. God didn’t choose him to stand up to the Romans and fight an army. God chose him to build a legacy. God knew Paul could faithfully endure and in those hardships he showed as an example of how to live in Christ. His teaching changed the face of the Church forever, and even though he would be tortured and eventually murdered he shows us how much a man can take in the name of the Lord.

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When the bad things happen, trauma, death, sickness, economic hardships, we often ask the same question, “Why Me?” The bigger questions, is why not you? I know this doesn’t sound fair, but give me a moment, and I’ll explain. First, bad things happen for a few reasons, either A: Your own choices caused it to happen. B: Someone else close to you caused it to happen. C: God allowed something to happen. No matter the reason, it happened, and we have a choice on how much the why will bother us. We can ask God for an answer but if I have learned anything it’s the answer may not present itself for years or in some cases decades down the road.

We cannot expect an answer because if life is the test, what kind of test would it be if the professor gave you the answers? Sometimes we need to learn things for ourselves, and we have to do the one thing that’s stated over and over in scripture, and that’s to have faith. Growing up through so many hardships I know my faith was on rocky ground. I know for a long time I was angry with God for allowing me to go through so much pain and suffering. I was so furious that for many years I barely spoke to God. He became the estranged father and even though I was angry and we didn’t speak, I always knew he was still there. God let me be angry, but never left my side, and never stepped letting me know He was still there. When I moved in with my Grandpa life had turned around for me. School was good for the first time in forever, and even dating started for me. Life wouldn’t be without it’s ups and downs, but for the first time in as far back as I could remember I was genuinely happy.

As the years would move forward I would find myself going through horrible situations, but I never asked God why. It would be years before I would beg God for release and when he said no, and this time I heard him, I knew the power and grace of God. I finally got it, and would understand the purpose. I have spoke in depth about the process of sword making, and I have realized that even though I wasn’t the strongest physically, or even the smartest, I would have one quality that God wanted. I would be able to shoulder the responsibility and walk with Christ. I could carry my cross and preach and teach the Gospel, but only because all those years of suffering, of pushing through, I was being trained. Everyone has divine gifts but no matter what they are they must be used and practiced. We must put forth effort in order to have these gifts grow and become useful for God. The things I endured I would be able to look back and see how I can now use it to preach the Gospel. One thing I’ve learned is God waists nothing. Every hardship we face God can turn into a blessing for us to use to Glorify His name. God wants those who can fight the good fight and will shoulder the cross. Often times those who have been broken will be the ones to be remade in Christ and set forth as soldiers. If you think about it, it makes sense that if someone’s lived off the silver spoon and never had to work for anything; on what authority do they have to speak of hardships? Those who struggle and have made it through have experience on their sides. We can share our testimony and people can relate to hardships.

Psalm 118:6-9“The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? The Lord is on my side as my helper; I shall look in triumph on those who hate me. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.” Trusting in the Lord isn’t easy, and it takes a lot of work, but the rewards for that trust are beyond our imagining. I realize now that each and every one of my horrible things has been preparing me and guiding me down where I would be able to use those horrible things in my life to help others. Romans 8:28“28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.” For all things God is working out the plan. I never would have dreamed my experiences as a child would be so useful as an adult, but now with my direction as a crisis chaplain I will undoubtedly encounter small children and I can put myself in their shoes. Have faith that just because you don’t know the reason today, doesn’t mean you’ll never know it. Trust in God’s big picture, and you will do just fine. Change your perspective from the negative to finding something positive. Remember your brain is like your body, if you put bad stuff in, that’s what you’re going to get out of it. If you put good stuff in you’ll be positive and healthier. Changing your focus isn’t easy but with hard work and practice you’ll do just fine. God Bless.

 

 

It’s Not The End, Just Different 

It’s Not The End, Just Different: 

Nothing lasts forever. This life is a fleeting moment in the totality of the universe. Sometimes in life we have a hard time with change. We can have a difficult time letting go of the past. I know for me, I have struggled in the past with relationships when they end. I have a hard time understanding why it ended. I don’t understand the human emotion that causes people to walk away from something that seemed good. I have a hard time understanding how someone’s feelings can change without negative interaction. I have a hard time understanding how the heart can change and people who were once beautiful, kind, and caring, can turn so cruel. The change comes when sin takes hold, and the fight against it goes south. The attacks of the Devil can over time wear you down and if you’re not careful you can succumb to the enemy.

When the river changes are you going to be prepared to face those changes? Are you prepared to deal with the storms when they come? My whole life I thought I could handle anything that came my way, and one afternoon I was caught of guard and when I wasn’t looking I stepped into the fist of Satan and fell to the mat. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to get back up. After more then two weeks in the hospital, I emerged with a new drive, a new direction, and rebuilding the foundation that cracked beneath my feet. God was changing my direction, and I felt like my world was ending. The thing about life is sometimes it’s truly about perspective. Had I looked at my life and saw it from a different point of view, it’s likely I would not have been in a worse situation from the one I started out on.

Realizing the end was there I panicked and my life spun out of control. When it seems like everything is upside down, and the hurricane is all around you, you have to remain calm, and focus on God. Had I taken some time I could have seen it wasn’t the end, but the beginning of a new chance to fix what I didn’t like about my life, and push forward. That’s not what happened for me, but now going on two years later, I can look back and realize everything I went through was growing pains. We can either choose to be destroyed by life, or we can rise above. We can choose to be hit by the lemons, or we can make lemonade. We can allow Satan to destroy us, or we can command Satan to flee before the name of Christ. We have the opportunity to learn, and to grow each and every minute we’re in this life. Yes, there will be horrible things, and things will often be painful, but consider how much you’ll be able to grow and change. No one likes pain, and no one wants to endure hardships, and while some will go through more, understand that in every situation both good and bad God is still in control and working things out. Our part in the matter is so small, yet we have the power to do great things, or screw up our lives royally. I’ve seen people destroy everything they had worked for and was forced to start from scratch in their lives.

Don’t look at life as what you’ve lost, instead look at it as what you have the potential to gain. Instead of me looking at what I was loosing, I could have instead taken the position that it wasn’t my doing, or my choice. I could have looked upon my life as a season of change, and taken that to move forward in my life in a healthy positive direction. I could have thought I am stronger, and I am capable of finding someone who better suits my personality. Sadly, I did none of these things, and I didn’t turn to God in my hour of need.

Scripture tells us to do two things in times of struggles. First, we must turn to God and pray for guidance and peace, and direction. Second we must turn to our brothers and sisters so we may seek Godly counsel for wisdom and guidance. Both of these things are important, and needed to ensure the compass continues to point North. It’s so easy for the Devil to get into our heads and pull us just a degree off course ever so slightly. Eventually we will find ourselves headed for a waterfall, our engines are broken, and we can’t steer. The Devil will laugh as we tumble over the edge and he’ll watch as we smash into the rocks at the bottom. The Devil delights in watching others suffer and if I had to describe the Devil in human form, he’s the guy sitting in a Corinthian leather lazy boy, sipping on a Martini, smoking a cigar, watching lives being destroyed on a thousand TV’s at once. Don’t give the Devil the satisfaction of good entertainment. Stand firm in your Christian convictions, and repel the attacks coming your way.

We change as we grow, and change is either good or bad, but one thing is certain, we have a say in how we change. Trauma’s and tragedy will come, but those who’s faith is cemented in Christ will withstand the storms far better then those with no hope. No one’s perfect and we’re all going to fall and fail, but making the choice to get up, change course, and keep pushing forward is all we can really do. God will guide us if we let Him. If we give up our selves, and trust God the journey will go much smoother. We will still hit the storms, but they won’t seem so scary anymore. While I was scared to change the way my Blog is posted, going from everyday to part time, I have found it difficult to take my fingers off the keyboard and make that change permanent. I know one day the time will be right for me to skip a day, or take time off, but as for right now, that’s not today. We can’t worry to much about tomorrow, instead focus on the here and now, focus on today, and focus on how you can glorify God in this moment.

 

It’s a wonderful thing to be able to share the blessings and teachings of Christ with all of you. For those who read my works in Christ, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. Recently I came across an amazing home business based in Travel and Entertainment that’s the real deal. The savings found through this business are amazing. If you shop online, like to go to movies, or travel, this gift card for you can save you up to 50%. Please enjoy your gift as a symbol of my appreciation and gratitude. God Bless.

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http://hangout.paid2save.com/

I Gotta Do Just One Thing First

I Gotta Do Just One Thing First

Throughout most of my life I’ve gone to church and in that time I’ve heard many people tell me, they can’t go because they have some things in their life to ‘get right’ first. In my opinion saying you need to work on you, or anything before you step foot into church is like saying you’re going to get better before you go to the hospital. Others have raised concern about going to church and being called a hypocrite. No one sin is greater then another at the foot of the cross. Because of that, we all fall short. There are no such things as a good person before God. There are believers and non-believers. We are all sinners and if our works before God are no better then a menstrual rag (yes that’s what it means in the Hebrew)

Ephesians 2:1-2 “2 And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, 2 in which you once walked according to the [a]course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience,” Before Jesus we were sinners with no hope of salvation. After Jesus and the sacrifice needed to pay the blood debt to reset the balance, we are still sinners, but we are sinners by Grace we are given the Golden Ticket to Heaven in which the price is our heart. We all must one day stand before Christ at the foot of the cross and understand that it’s not about if we’ve sinned or not, it’s about where our heart and loyalties lie. If we truly believe that we need to be sinless before entering church you don’t have the fist clue who Jesus Christ is. No matter if you’re Christian, Buddhist, Wiccan, Muslim, or any other faith on the planet you are a sinner and thus all are welcome at the table of Christ, and his blood was spilt for everyone.

If you want to be happy in this world it’s important for you to be walking in Christ, and once you submit to that authority of the universe, you will then seek your spiritual gifts in order to pursue your God given talent in ministry for the Lord. It’s in purpose we find fulfillment, and it’s in that purpose we find our happiness. Must like our founding fathers knew that the pursuit of happiness would be one of faith, they also knew that many will seek it, but not all would find it. If you are not walking with the Lord you are walking in the world, and if you’re walking in the world, you’re walking with the demons in this life. You will walk in the lusts of the flesh, and you will only find the thorns never the rose.

God the father loves us, and when we wrong we expect to be disciplined. A fathers love, a true fathers love will never take enjoyment from punishing your children. As a parent disciplining your children is inevitable, but life never prepares you for the difficulty ahead. Our Father set the rules for us to follow, and how to love Him, but when we break the rules, we need that correction. Our Father gains no joy from our punishment. It’s never our works that will earn favor with the Lord. We can never do enough, but when we find ourselves longing for Christ, that’s when our hearts open, when we can submit to the Lord, and stop running from our calling. Ephesians 2:8-10“8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Since works along will never be enough to save us from the dismal fate of Hell, we must seek a higher understanding of what it is the Lord wants of us. It seems so simple an idea, so beautifully crafted, that the only need necessary for the triumph of evil in your own heart, is hate. The difference between life and death lies solely in our own power. We can choose our own fate and yet, so few will know the Lord because of one reason or another. 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 “11 Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power, 12 that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

We want to believe we are the masters of our own ships, that no one, not even the ‘cosmic fairy’ from above can make us do something we don’t want to. While it’s true many people will fight the calling from the Lord, and many will be faced with signs that they should be doing something else, the Lord never forces anyone to do anything. Sure, much like a father, suggestions are made, guidance is given, but ultimately we still choose to follow or not. “Ask not what God can do for you, ask what you can do for God.”(Unknown)We are terminally sick, and the only cure is found in love. Strange so few will realize this, but its pride and vanity that will keep people away. When we think what we do is us, which I did something, that’s boasting and that’s like telling God you’re better then Him. In Ephesians 2:10 it talks about how we are created to be workmanship, that God is the potter, we are the clay, and we were made with divine purpose. I don’t know about you, but so many people ask their entire lives what their purpose is, and the answer is right in front of them the whole time. Follow Christ, submit to the Lord, and your purpose will flourish as your works in the Lord grows.

Everyone has a purpose, and when you say you have things to do before going to the Lord that’s your own pride talking. Equally if sin is a disease and you won’t go to the Doctor, you allow that stubborn sensibility get in the way of finding the cure for your sickness. Faith isn’t easy, but look at the Polio vaccine. While it wouldn’t cure Polio it did eventually eradicate it from existence in the 1stworld. People were skeptical of the vaccine and thought it was a trick, or too good to be true. Salvation is much in the same. It’s so easy; we are saved by love and grace. We love the Lord, and we are saved. It’s such a simple and small thing, yet so few will find the cure to the sickness that has engulfed our world. Don’t wait for you to get your life right before coming to Christ because there will always be one more thing, one more issue to deal with, one more problem you’ll face, and you’ll never find peace till you step up and accept Christ in your heart. Don’t waist your life in search of something that’s been right in front of you the whole time. God knew you before you were created. God loved you before you were conceived. God made you in your mothers womb for a purpose only you could fulfill. Stop looking for the meaning in your life in all the wrong places. Find your purpose, the reason for your existing in the only place that matters, at the foot of the cross.

 

 

Sufficient

Sufficient

The morning sun rises, and never can we know for sure what fate will bring. The pain that can infiltrate our hearts in the blink of an eye is very real. It doesn’t matter how good the day, one thing can change it all. We all have pain, and we all have sorrow, and I know that in my time of need, that when I’m not strong there’s one place I can turn, Jesus Christ. I know that I need his grace because my own is nothing. I know that in my pain and my drop in faith, I know that in my weakness there is strength. I know that I can call on my Father above and I can lean on Him. No matter what problems I have, I know that Christ is sufficient in all of my needs. 2 Corinthians 12:9 “But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” Weeks such as these, this is the verse I recite in my head. We all have them, and it doesn’t matter how faithful you are, we are human, and the Devil is always on the prowl. All we can do is put our faith in the Lord. We must go to the Lord on bended knee and rise up our sorrows, rise up in our weaknesses, and allow the Lord to make us strong. Live can be hard, and it can be unfair, and heartbreaking, but in each of these the Lord is making something beautiful. We must trust and have faith. No matter how many times we are hurt, or beaten down, no matter how many struggles we face, the great and love of the Lord will always triumph over all things.

We always want more as people. I’m single, but I want more. I don’t have a hiking pack, but I want one. I want a hiking tent, and other toys and gadgets. There’s always just one more thing to add to the shopping cart, or the wish list. What about things that aren’t stuff? When we look to our significant others, people we claim to love, are we wishing for the ‘just one more’ things? Going through two divorces both from affairs, I often asked myself what I was missing. I asked what the other person had that I didn’t have. I blamed myself over and over for their actions. I’m not perfect, and now coming up on two years with no forward momentum in my romantic life, I have found myself asking the question, ‘what’s wrong with me?’ As I have been battling with depression for some time now, it’s a constant battle to stay focused on what’s important. One of the hardest things we as people have to do is be patient. For me, patience on God with a romantic relationship, and a career has been the most difficult. I’m not a personality type that likes being alone, so for me these last two years have been trial by fire.

No matter what your ‘thing’ is that you desire, we must always remember that though we will want things, we must never want them more then the Lord. We must stay away from idol worship which is anything we put as more important than God, and that includes ourselves. In my walk with the Lord I am constantly asking for my path to be made clear in my relationship life, and I’m constantly asking for understanding of the plan ahead of me. It’s not easy being in a situation that causes discomfort, but looking back at the Apostil Paul and everything he endured for the Church, I cannot honestly say my loneliness, or desire to find a new place to live outweighs what he endured. So I pray that God’s grace is sufficient for me, and I continue to explore options for my life as I follow in Christ. Above all the relationship with Jesus Christ always has to come first, even when it’s not easy.

 

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