Finding a place…

Well guys. I’m broken. Any by that I mean my ankle. And by broken I mean I tore two ligaments on the front side of my left foot.

What this actually means is that I now have a minute to breathe, to contemplate, and to write. I’ve missed this blog. Though very few readers may actually make their way to this all but abandoned website of random disorganized musings, I have had a thought that I felt was important and perhaps worthy of sorting out and sharing tonight. My sincere hope is that the reader might be encouraged or enlightened by something I will write tonight.

We all have a place in this world. Some places seem more important because they are more visible; while sometimes places are coveted because they are more rare or require greater responsibility, and give a person influence or power. Still other places seem lowly, insignificant. Usually these places manifest themselves in ‘behind the scenes’ work– those unsung heroes whose lives are marked not by their power to influence, but by their ability to do the undesirable jobs– to keep things running smoothly.

Guys, I am a proud person. I am humiliated by my Savior in numerous ways every day. He shoots me down again and again and I pick myself up– only to proclaim my own strength and ability to fix any problems I create.

God has humbled me this summer. I planned to spend every evening of the week after work playing sports. I took the summer off school so I could focus on picking up my ultimate game and taking rec league softball wayyy too seriously.

Its all over now. One slide into second base last monday night ended all of my plans for an athletic summer. God, however, in His Grace, allowed me exactly one half of the summer to enjoy sports. But this second half will be spent differently.

Allow me to clarify something here. There is absolutely nothing wrong with sports. I feel as though God has given me a love and passion for sports and the outdoor, and that I have the responsibility to utilize this to the best of my ability.

But God had taught me something. And He had to do it the hard way.

In a more shallow way, I have tried to force my body to do things it wasnt really designed to do. I dont think this is a sin in and of itself, but my overconfidence and lack of honest humility may have necessarily caused the pain I am feeling this very night.

Jesus said,  “… everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.” (Luke 18:14)

Do you know what I think? I think the key to finding your place in this world is humility. If you are Gods child, He has a plan for you. If you are like me, you want to squeeze and mold yourself into the position you want for your life– Your desire is to exalt yourself.

In the same way, Pride causes pain, frustration, and quite often despair.

Humility allows you to be moldable. Humility frees you to focus on whatever place (position, career, even geograohic location) you are meant to serve.

Embrace the person God made you, be willing to serve others where you are. Recognize that God has for you the perfect will, that may likely not be your own. And when God speaks to you through wise counsel, listen.

Looking for your place in this world? It’s in service to Christ, and those He places in your life. Be used by Him.

Peace and Love!

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So tonight I was going to continue with my political rants about what horrible rotten shape the world is in, politically.

Politics.

I would probably have said something about how frustrated I am that people would count a smart, successful, principled constitutionalist presidential candidate out of legitimacy simply because the media has deemed him ‘unelectable.’

I would have challenged those who actually read my facebook garbage (few people, to be sure), “Give me one logical, constitutional argument against Dr. Ron Paul’s legitimacy to the Republican nomination.

More garbage would have ensued, name-calling would probably follow, and no legitimate lesson or conclusion could be reasonably drawn from the conversation that was destined to fail.

So I scrapped it.

Yep. like so many goldfish cracker crumbs imprinted by a tennis shoe onto the kitchen floor, I swept whatever hopes I had of ‘changing someone’s mind’ regarding who they would vote for in the primaries, tossing them into the waste basket.

A waste of time.

“The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever He pleases.” – Proverbs 21:1

So what am I saying?

is it not obvious?

Those who know me would probably not consider me the ‘giving up’ type. I argue a false position far too long, have a reputation for taking jokes much further than would be considered humorous, and have a knack for destroying my friends in Facebook poking wars.

Why, then, the apparent despair?

             Do not surrender your hopes, surrender your heart. Do not surrender your fight, surrender your will. Do not lose your temper, gain perspective.

             Remember that your hopes are not that we get a good president. It is that this country would bring glory to God. Not that you would prove your liberal friends wrong as the new ‘constitutional’ president brings economic prosperity, but that God would restore America as the beacon of hope, lending missionaries and much needed aid to the hurting, broken, and starving of this world.

             Surrender your passions to prove yourself right, to the task of preaching the Word of God. You cannot prove God right with arguments. But you can be used to do right by studying, obeying, and submitting yourself to the Words of Christ.

Do not speak, do.
Do not post, act.
Do not share links,
share Christ.

Advocate the Words of Jesus and His Salvation.

Salvation is in the cross, not a presidential candidate. Hope is in our Saviour, not a political agenda. Freedom is in Christ, not in a signed document. Words of life are in the Bible, not a presidential debate.

Neither President Obama, nor Dr. Ron Paul offer true, everlasting hope.

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.
So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is

. . . eternal.”
– 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Focus…

How long as it been since you had your focus adjusted? I don’t know about you, but I have definitely had an issue with becoming near-sighted. That is, I get comfortable with where I am in my relationship with God and begin to shift my focus toward myself.

When I focus on myself:

Nothing is good enough. Whatever I do, I am constantly searching for a faster, easier, and more efficient way to do it. That is my passion.

What I do lacks purpose. I go to work, sure. For myself. I work to impress my bosses so that I can work my way up and land a swell job to make more money and provide for myself.

I am my provider. Therefore I look to reward myself for my efforts with temporary things.

All of this draws me further from The Cross, and from God’s tender love and sovereign will. This cycle is painful to break and refocusing is much more difficult the longer you allow this mindset to perpetuate. But it must be done.

For when we focus on Christ:

God is good enough. No matter what we do, Christ’s actions atoned for our mistakes. Because of His perfection, there is no need for us to be ‘good enough.’

He is the Ultimate Purpose. He uses our professions to deliver the Gospel and His love to hurting people everywhere. It is not our job, and certainly is not merely ‘a way to make money.’ Work is a gift from God that we may spread His love to a set of people whom He has picked out for us.

God is the provider. This mentality causes one to look to Christ for every blessing, drawing us closer to Him as we pray and seek His face.

God grant us Your vision and Focus, that through You we may live effective lives for You. Yet not of our own works, lest any man should boast.

Afterthought: Confession

Today at work, God brought the passage regarding the confession of Jesus Christ to my mind.

“Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.”

– Matthew 10:32

Are there people in your life whom you would be ashamed to introduce to your parents or a close friend as your acquaintances? Sure, we all do. Maybe they never shower, or cuss like sailors… maybe they make foolish choices or have a horrible reputation… whatever the reason, we are afraid of what others may think of us were they to know that we associate with them.

Ever been proud of a friend? Maybe your third cousin twice removed appeared on an NCIS episode and you just have to tell all your friends of your fortunate relative… maybe your friend graduated top of his class at Harvard and landed a job with a top law firm. We are excited to tell people we know them because we are proud of them, and we want others to associate us with them.

Think about it: Jesus is offering to confess us(!!!!), stained and tainted with sin… unclean and good for nothing to His Holy, Powerful, All-knowing Father. Yes, He cleans us up and makes us fit for His Father with His perfect sacrifice, but just think — ALL He asks us to do in return is confess Him (Perfect, Holy, Righteous (and shall I add COMPLETELY AWESOME) to our friends.

Is that really so much to ask?

Go tell it on the mountain!

Discipleship…

Hey everyone! I told you all I’d be posting more often, and to fulfill that promise, I am now writing my second post in only… 1 month? Yeah, well… haha! I wish I could’ve written more, God sure has been doing a lot in my life lately.

First, do you have a person in your life that is unsaved? Of course you do. Maybe you’re not close friends with them, maybe you only know their name, but everyone knows someone that needs Jesus (and if you don’t, you might want to get out more. 😉 …

I know I know, you hear it all the time… You need to share Jesus. But I hope in this post to encourage you just a little bit to step further outside your comfort zone.

(WARNING: rabbit trail ahead… AAAAAHHH!!!)

But before I do, what is it with this whole ‘comfort zone’ thing anyways? We always ALWAYS hear that especially in regards to sharing our faith. You don’t hear nonchristians speaking of their comfort zone, pretty much ever. (Let’s get out of our comfort zone and share a cigarette with a non-smoker… O.o ) But Christians use it all the time. Why do you think that is? (Not a rhetorical question, btw… Chime in!) And if a Christian’s ‘comfort zone’ must be breached every time we share our faith, perhaps this whole comfort zone mentality needs to be thrown out like the stinky smelly dirty diaper it is. (A pleasant sentiment, no?)

Please take a moment and listen to this: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fv6sQKHdgOA&feature=related)

Back on subject now. 😉

We are LAZY.

Do you know how many people haven’t heard the Gospel? Sure, they may have seen a Christian smiling at them and thought, ‘hmm… that’s a nice smile…’ but people, we have to understand that merely being a nice person around non-Christians, though also a command of Christ, does NOT in and of itself tell anyone that they have sinned and need Christ for eternal life!

Did you know, sharing the Gospel can take as little as three seconds? Sure, you can take as long as you want, but do not let ‘I don’t have the time’ as an excuse stand in the way of someone hearing the Gospel for the first time. Imagine 80 years from now, when most of us are in eternity, the only moments that will matter are those few seconds in which we each decided whether or not to trust in Jesus for our eternal security. Do you not want to be used by God to plant a seed? (that was rhetorical.) 😉

(Luke 19:39-40)

“Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.”

But He answered and said to them, “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out.”

Jesus, here is speaking of His OWN disciples. People who had seen His miracles… He is declaring to all that if WE, Christ’s disciples, keep silent, He will use rocks! We ought to be ashamed of our silence, that Christ might resort to inanimate objects to proclaim His glory to creation. Ask God for the words to speak, and an opportunity to witness… God bless you all!

Fight for Christ, proclaim His name!

Resurrection!

Hello everyone!

Since I have recently found I am busier than I have ever been, with college prep, and working at McDonalds 40 hours a week, I have decided to resurrect this blogpost as a place to share things God has been teaching me. I hope to give it a face-lift here before too long, and post at least once a month. Thank you all, and stay tuned for posts! 🙂

 

“Look! He advances like the clouds, his chariots come like a whirlwind, his horses are swifter than eagles. Woe to us! We are ruined!”

– Jeremiah 4.13

Cheers!!

Hello readers! This being the first post in a rather long-ish time, I would like to introduce a topic that has NOT been on my mind much lately. At all. That is, until I was reading through my Bible, and I stumbled upon a verse in it that thoroughly convicted me.

So, I do not know if any of you have this problem or not, but, for me at least, whenever I’m doing something hard that I’m supposed to do that I do not want to do AT ALL, I tend to feel sad. Now, if this is a RIDICULOUSLY hard thing that you are doing, I am not saying you have to always be happy about it right off the bat. But, try this verse on for size…

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

Random Reader (RR): WAIT, but this is a RIDICULOUSLY hard thing!!!! Aren’t I allowed a little sad-ness??

Read the verse again. And remember, this is Jesus talking.

RR: Uhh… so what am I supposed to learn from this?

Look, you think what you are going through is hard, or tough? Maybe it is, but is it as tough as anything Jesus had to do?

For one, He lived a blame-less life, then He sacrificed His entire life for His ministry on earth. Then, after all that sacrifice, He was attacked ruthlessly by people He could have vaporized into thin air with merely a thought in His head. Keeping His patience on the Cross while beaten by sinners, and even continuing His ministry there, as He witnessed to a thief who was crucified next to Him… He TRULY overcame the world.

If you claim Jesus as savior, and Lord of your life, you have EVERY reason to be joyful, and happy. 🙂 And that’s more or less the point of this point. 😀

A very good friend of mine reminds me often “things we think are big deals often seem a lot smaller in hindsight.”

RR : Why do bad things happen to Christians? Why can’t God just make everything perfect for us, since we have Him?

Answer:

1st, tough things happen to grow us. When we are stripped from all comforts, the things we thought we could not survive without, God gives us grace to continue, and uses these times to draw us closer to Him. We adjust our perspective and recognize that God is the only thing we cannot live without.

2nd, tough things happen to witness to others. God uses us in the most difficult times, to prove that we have Something… bigger than life itself, guiding us, and giving us joy. When we have what we care about most, a hobby, a talent, something we care about more than anything else, taken from us with the world watching- THAT is when the world is watching- we have an opportunity to show them that life is not about what you gain, who you know, or what you do. It’s about WHO KNOWS YOU. 🙂

None of these good things come about with poor spirits… so I guess that was where the conviction kicked in.

If we are commanded to try to be like Jesus, and are commanded BY Jesus to be of good cheer, why not?

Thank you, and I hope this post is convicting you as much as it’s convicting me. :-/

Cheer up, everyone! 😀