Time….

We count it and watch it, some days it seems like we don’t have enough of it yet we waste it too. So, what do you intend to do with the time that you have? How much time do you have? How much of it have you thrown away with games and silly things that don’t give you any reward? We look at a new sunrise and think that we have all day to do things when actually we have already lost six hours of that day since midnight. During the spring and fall we get two equinoxes  which give us twelve hours each of daylight and night, but as Jesus said to His disciples: “As long as it is day, we must do the works of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work.” John 9:4

I was curious about the hours and minutes and seconds that we have in a day so I am breaking that down here: In one twenty-four hour period there are 1440 minutes and 86,400 seconds. We tend to use part of those for sleep of course, but the point is that our time is limited. We don’t know for sure how long we will live and yet we fritter it away as if we will have a century or more.

Life begins with our conception but our breathing life begins at birth and from that point on we begin to die physically. Of course for a couple of decades we don’t notice the breakdown of our cells and our bodies, if we are lucky or blessed to be born healthy. Some don’t get that blessing though and are born with built-in limitations, which can be a blessing or a curse depending on how we look at it as we grow. The thing to remember is that GOD DOESN’T MAKE JUNK!

Physical limitations, disabilities or whatever you may call them are just points where we need to learn to lean on God more in our daily lives. The apostle Paul had a thorn that he had to deal with while he was serving the Lord and he asked God to remove it three times, but God told him that “my grace is sufficient for you“. Paul had to learn to live with it, whatever it was and he did some mighty preaching with it until his execution.

Time is given to us in increments of seconds and minutes and hours and days and months and years, but we are never guaranteed a certain amount of time. We get our days just one at a time, and no more. This is why I try to tell people about Jesus and His mercy for your life, provided on the cross and through His resurrection so that our sins are paid for. All that we need to do is to claim this grace and mercy from God.

Once you do, then you can use the remaining days that you have telling others about Jesus in your life. We are given this time to do just that, to tell others about our Lord and Savior. This is God’s will for a Christian’s life. We all don’t have glorious and grand ministries like some on TV do. But, in telling others about Jesus we do have a ministry. Because, God loves all of His creation. He doesn’t like the sins that many seem prone to live in on a daily basis, but He loves the people anyway.

Living a sinful life is not pleasing to God, whether you are a CINO (Christian in name only) or a true, born again Christian. One who truly has had their life and heart changed by the Holy Spirit cannot comfortably commit sin because you are convicted of it when the thought enters your mind even before you do anything with that thought! I don’t mean that Christians are pure and sinless because nobody lived a life on Earth that way except for Jesus.

We can live a life sanctified by Him, washed in His blood, and our records have been wiped clean from that point on, but we will still say things, think things, and do things that are sinful. We can claim His forgiveness for those sins at the point of conviction because we are covered by His righteousness. As long as we don’t choose to go back into a life of sin and ignore the Spirit’s prompting us to stop. We are still His, but like putting a white cloth in the mud we have soiled our life and our soul. If you keep on in your sin, it will get easier to ignore the Spirit’s prompting each time until one day you won’t hear it or feel it at all.

But…God is still with you. He hasn’t left you, you are the one who moved. Come back to Him, seek Him out and He will forgive your sins and take you back. Just because you have gotten off the path, doesn’t mean that you can’t find it again. Give your life and your heart to Jesus and the rest of the journey won’t be easy but He will give you the strength to get through each minute…each second…of each day that is ahead of you.

Our time is not our own

Life is something that we tend to take for granted. We always feel, it seems, that we will have tomorrow or next week or next month to do the things that we like to do, that we want to do. Our life is a gift to us from God so that we can understand Who He is and what our purpose in this life really is. He has something in mind for each one of us regardless of what may be happening in our lives.

In Jeremiah God says this:  “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  (Jeremiah 29:11)

This is the promise that all of us have to cling to, especially during times in our lives which are tough. We cannot and should not fall on our own human weaknesses, and yet we tend to do this especially in times of grief and sadness. If you are going to live in Christ‘s strength daily, then you can’t fall on your strength just because things go south one day. We have to depend on Him every day in order to live the life that He has for us and to be a blessing to others.

Pity parties like we tend to have when things are going badly are the one personal  vice that we all seem to have, but we have the strength of Christ if we will bring Him into our life daily. His love for us is more than we can imagine and He will sustain you every day when you depend on Him and allow Him to walk with you and guide you through life. We don’t have the answers to every problems, no one does except Jesus, because He is the answer!

God will provide for each of us the provisions that we need whether it is money, food, shelter or whatever it may be, when we depend on Him. I know that it is hard for many people to actually do this because it has been hard for me as well because the One that you are depending on is the Creator but He is not visible. His provision for you is enough, but it seems to be provided just in time and in the right amounts, not the way we want it…right now! We want our prayers answered today not next month or next year or even ten years from now, but God’s timing is the right time although we may not realize it at the time.

We have grown up in the past thirty years in a culture which has access to everything NOW! We have had microwaves for that length of time so we don’t pop popcorn in air poppers or on the stove, we want it in forty seconds from the microwave. In the past forty or so years, we have had drive-thru fast food places where we could just drive up, order what we want, pay for it and drive away and we didn’t even have to get out of our warm or cool car or truck to do it and usually we got our food, if you can call it that, in a few minutes.

Instant satisfaction and gratification is the norm these days, especially with the coming of the Internet and Amazon.com. We can find any amount of information that we need on a particular subject and buy books or most any other thing online in a few seconds and it will be delivered within a few days usually.

The biggest problem that this has created is that we don’t have much patience anymore. There is no delay in gratification, because we can get it almost instantly from anywhere. God knew that this was going to happen because He told Daniel about it and it is written in Daniel chapter 12:4 which says: ” But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.”

We need to depend on God every day to get us through, but we don’t like to have someone else in control. You have to give Him control, He doesn’t take it, so unless  you are willing to truly give Him yourself and follow His guidance in your life then you are not surrendered to Him. This is what is required and until you come to that realization, your life will be unbalanced and unfruitful toward the Kingdom of God.

It is true that your life may be going well every day, whether you belong to Christ or not, but it is a lie from Satan if you don’t belong to Jesus. All of these “good things” that you have and have been “given”, you have them because he is trying to keep you “satisfied” with your life, with your stuff, with everything that you have! Things don’t help. Stuff doesn’t do any of us any good…but Jesus can and does! Ask Him into your heart and into your everyday life because He has a plan for you and it will be revealed and accomplished when you give your life to Him and follow Him. Amen.

Can’t I do it without church?

Some people wonder why they have to go to church if they become a Christian and they complain about it. They even ask, “Can’t I become a Christian without being a member of a church?” Let me answer that question with another one–can a honey-bee be a bee without a hive? Can a sailor be a sailor without a ship? Can a person be a parent without a family? Can a father or mother be what they are if they don’t have children? None of these can be what they are supposed to be unless there is a reason for them to be.

Being a Christian is important for your salvation, but it is also important to God. He created man for daily fellowship with Him and they had that for a while. He will be with you whether you are in church or not, but your soul and your walk with Him will be much more blessed by having fellowship with other Christians.

While you can enjoy your fellowship with God whether you are in church or not, the fellowship that being with fellow Christians gives you will deepen relationship with Him. Living as a Christian will enhance your life here and give you a future to look forward to, unlike disregarding God as many people today seem to be doing.

It is unhealthy to ignore or disregard the existence of God as our Creator as many seem to feel the need to do today. You might ask “Why is that?”; well, the reason it is unhealthy is because you were designed by Him so your being, your soul yearns for fellowship with Him. If you continually reject Him, then you grow cold, distant and since you are dissociating yourself with the love of God, then you will reject love too.

By rejecting love, your personal relationships suffer, family relationships suffer, friendship suffers. God is Supreme Love, and by rejecting Him you are putting it (love) out of your life. You will have lust, and affection that can mimic love and make you feel wanted but it is not the same. Your life and mine were created to be more complete with love present in our lives and without it, there is an emptiness, a place which feels hollow that cannot be filled.

God loves each person on Earth and He provided a way for us to be reconciled to Him through the sacrifice of Jesus as the perfect sacrifice, the One that could pay the price for all of mankind’s sins. Jesus did pay that price for all of us and if you are feeling a pull on your heart, a tug at your soul that tells you that God wants you, then accepting Jesus as your Savior is the way to salvation. It is the only way to come to know Him and to have the hope of eternal life in Him.

Does our life really matter in the grand scheme of things?

The answer to that question is: “It depends on who you are serving, yourself or God.”

Do you ever feel that life and the living of it is just too hard or stressful? I do. There are days when I wish that a truck would just lose control and end my life right there regardless of whether I am going to work or coming home. But, most days I have my son in the car with me so I don’t pray for anything like that to happen. You do have to be careful about what you ask for, you know. Depression is an awful and deceitful emotion. It creeps up on you gradually, just a little at a time and then one day it hits you like a truck with no brakes!

Depression really does hurt. Especially when our daily grind is unrewarding or when you feel that life and this world are not treating you fairly. If you are not a Christian, days like this can cause all sorts of things to happen and most of them are not good. Being a Christian doesn’t exempt you from days like this.

In fact, it seems to multiply them occasionally. If you haven’t matured enough or if you have other things in your life that you haven’t confessed lately, that is when God gets out His polishing tools and puts you through some trials in order to make you into the Christian that He needs you to be.

He knows the outcome but that doesn’t stop Him from doing what needs to be done to bring out your best, even if it hurts. The pain that comes during these times is not unbearable because He said that He would not allow us to go through a trial that He can’t provide a way out of.

If you are serving yourself, the grand scheme really doesn’t matter unless it is a personal accomplishment of some kind. Because your personal “grand scheme” likely will not affect the whole world, just your piece of it, then what will become of your accomplishments and your family when your life is over?

If you are serving God, then the grand scheme should be His and you should be asking for His guidance to do whatever it is that is necessary to fulfill your part of it. He will provide you with exactly what you need, when you need it according to His plans for you. He doesn’t always give you what you ask for when you ask for it because He knows that we sometimes ask for things that we aren’t ready for or that we really don’t need.

Come to the throne of grace and ask Him into your life. Your life and your daily walk with Him will never be the same. It will be BETTER!!

Faith in Today’s Church, is it real?

 

The church that our Lord began two thousand years ago seems to be lost. Not from the lack of members or converts, but from a lack of conviction and purpose. We, as the Church that our Lord gave His life for, have become stale, bland and unappealing to those who need Hope the most. Like salt which has lost its saltiness and is good for nothing, and the message has lost its fire.

The message from the church only causes more strife and bitterness in the world at large rather than giving men hope. Why is that? Jesus taught us a message of hope and yet Christians today seem to be unable to give that hope or His message the fire and the flavor that they once did. The enemy seems to be able to quench the fire of our faith too easily, why is that?

It is because our lives have become too involved with “stuff”, not just our everyday existence but other insignificant issues which get in the way like so many thorns and weeds. The only way to overcome our adversary is to study God’s Word and get our hunger for it back. If we don’t do that, he will overcome us and our message, and the Church cannot, must not allow that to happen! The Spirit will guide us and protect us but we have to be willing to follow Him daily.

Our coming to God is not of our own volition because we are drawn by the Spirit. Once we claim our place in His service as Christians, God never lets go. We may walk away but He is always there waiting for us like a patient Father. The time which we have here on earth is to be of service to Him but so is our eternal service after this life. This will not be a chore, as some would think, but a glad and cheerful service as unto someone dearly loved.

The message which was given by Jesus to be spread to the “uttermost parts of the earth” was and is the good news of the Kingdom of God. This also includes the forgiveness of sins through our Lord’s suffering for all on the cross with His death and resurrection putting the final blow to the control over us by our sinful nature. Once we come to Him, believing in Him and the forgiveness extended to us through His sacrifice for us, we can never lose that which we cannot gain through any act of our own.

The sacrifice that our Lord made on our behalf is something that no mere man can accomplish, only the Son of the Most High God! Only the Lion of Judah could accomplish the forgiveness which was needed for the whole world. No law or man-made “thing” can accomplish this. Our so-called righteousness is as formless as a vapor and has no substance to it at all, especially from the point of view which God has. A perfect and Holy God cannot view imperfect man and his imperfect righteousness.

God, in your absence there has been a bit of a problem…

In 1962 our government started pushing any reference to God and the Bible out of public school. Ever since then, our nation has been going down the wrong path in many ways. Morality has slipped away, the smartest minds have been done away with (through abortion), teen-age pregnancy increased and divorce did too.

Prior to this decision, by our supreme court justices, achievement test scores were consistently around the 900 mark (SAT), the violent crime rate was very low as was the divorce rate and teen pregnancy. What happened? We legislated God and the Bible out of the education process!

When God’s word is taken from the government hallways and from the educational halls, the entire society suffers. Our nation was begun because of religious persecution and those who wanted the freedom to practice their religion and their beliefs without it. That doesn’t mean that America was to be a repository for all the world’s religions or even man’s manufactured “religion”. America was allowed to become a nation to be a light to the world because of our belief in God, the only God and Creator of the Universe!

In becoming that light, we also provided a persecution free place for others to come. Although, we have allowed that freedom to be used in ways that were not intended when this country was founded. By allowing God’s Word to be taken out of the educational process, our nation has dimmed the light of it to a point that it is barely seen at this time. Minorities in our nation now have a louder voice than the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. I am not being racist when I say minorities, I am speaking of those who only represent about one or two percent of the population.

Our Lord is punishing our nation due to the decisions that have been made in the past fifty years and those that are still being made daily in our capital. We have been very lax in the way we have exercised our voices in government, especially those of us who are Christians. I have seen some who claimed to be Christians and  claimed that they would uphold His Word and principles when they got into office, yet once they were sworn in something happened. Their memory became so short that they couldn’t remember those promises which were made in order to be in that office.

We must either take back our country and elect officials who will put God back where He belongs or resign ourselves to a future that would have been unthinkable just sixty years ago! My mother’s generation and most of the so called “Baby-boomers” would not have stood by while their freedoms were turned upside-down like our children’s future will be. This had to be said. I am not sure how many of you who read this will act on it but I am sure if this were happening in a Muslim or Islamic controlled country, there would be armed uprisings going on! Praise God! Ask Him for His guidance for it is He who holds our future in His hand not Allah or Buddha or any of the other “gods” that are being worshiped.

An image of Jesus

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Our image of Jesus is distorted from the way painters have portrayed Him as a weak, feminine type of man. In the time that He lived, and the vocation that He worked with His earthly father as a carpenter, weakness was not an option. A carpenter had to lift wooden doors, chairs, beams, and whatever else without a whole lot of help except for his muscles. The image that I have of Jesus shows a kind, gentle man but one with strength, not only from His spirit but from the work that He did before He started His ministry on earth.

Our Lord loved all of us and still does with a love that cannot be understood by today’s culture. He truly was and is the Messiah, the Savior of us all, not just some prophet whose body was hidden after He was crucified. One day He will come back and all will see who the Prince of Peace and the King of kings really is. On that day every knee will bow to Him and those who accepted Him in life will go on to their reward for eternity. Those who did not accept Him and His message, will be cast into the lake of fire and eternal punishment which was meant only for Satan and his minions.

Please, regardless of what you think of my site or its message, read the Bible. Pray that Jesus will forgive you of your sins and come into your heart and cleanse you of all unrighteousness. The smallest sin, like telling a lie to someone or even the sin of being a murderer or even a rapist are all equal in God’s sight. The only sin which will send anyone to hell is that of rejecting Jesus and His gift of forgiveness, that’s it! The love of Christ to you all and His peace too.