Sunday, October 12, 2014

Word of the Day- Let Go and Let God

Luke 22:42- "Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done."

Jesus held onto hope that there was another way to save everyone. Surely, no one would want to do what he did. But Jesus left the choice up to God. Jesus came to God and basically asked him if there was another way to save mankind, yet he did not impose his will.

How many of you hold onto things when you really should let go? Jesus held onto hope, but he still chose to follow the will of God. Just imagine if Jesus held onto the fear of pain and death so much so that he decided not to die on the cross for us. Where would we be now? It's so easy to hold onto things that feel or seem better to us. For  widows who lost their spouse, they may be holding onto their anger towards God for taking their loved one. For any lonely person out there, it could be holding onto someone, or the hope of someone, that God never intended them to be with. For any driven and ambitious person, they may hold onto dreams and goals that were never a part of God's will. While these things seem great to us, and we question God why we can't have them, we never question why God doesn't want these things for us. When God said that he had "plans to prosper and not harm you," that is his promise to give you the best that he has to offer you, and that which is best for you. Because God never breaks his word, it means that he may not want you to "be with that guy" or "sing in that band" or "remain in that state of grief." What makes all of this difficult on us is that God gave us free will. God is a gentleman, and he will never force something on you that you don't want. However, when you say that you want God's will but still have an iron grip on what you want, you are tying God's hands. God can't move in your life when you don't give him the option to remove what you don't need or what may hurt you. I don't know if any of you, when you were in junior high, had to go through the classes about the consequences of drinking, but I did. When the officer came in to talk to us, we of course covered all the consequences of drinking and driving. The officer wanted us to actually have a visual understanding what of it was like for a drunk person, so we all had to try on the beer goggles. Now, most of us were just getting a kick out of trying to walk with the goggles on. Some of us veered so far off the straight line that we were running into desks or each other. This is exactly what we are like when we hold onto something too tight. We become so "drunk" on our wants, desires, and/or emotions that we start veering off the path that God wants us to walk down, and we start running into things that hurt us, or we run into other people that are wandering around just as aimlessly. It all comes down to trust! We love God, yet for some reason, we still have a hard time trusting that he knows what is best for us. The thing about love though is that "it always protects (God), always trusts (us)..." (1 Cor. 13:7)

So today, let go and let God! God has wonderful things in store for you!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Word of the Day- To Fear or Not To Fear?

Psalm 16:8- I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.

We are not of this world. We were never meant for this world. Death was never part of the picture. Sin was a completely foreign concept. Fear was never even a part of our vocabulary. However, when we were no longer ignorant of the ways of good and evil, we nailed the lids on our coffin, we fought against flesh and blood, and fear was no longer just a word. Most people forget that Jesus is always at our right hand. Here is a perfect example: most people, when they were really little, were afraid of the dark, mostly because they were afraid that something they couldn't see would get them...aka The Boogeyman. So when you were afraid, mom or dad would come to comfort you, and suddenly the dark wasn't scary anymore. You had someone there to protect you from the dark and all the monsters hiding in your closet or under your bed. Let me tell you something: nothing about that has changed. You may be older in this world, but you are still a child of God. So if you know in your heart that Jesus is with you at your right hand, then why do you still walk in fear? Jesus does not walk with you so that you would still be afraid. Fear holds you back from being who God intended you to be. When Jesus died on the cross, he bought back our life for us. He bought back our freedom from sin. He bought back our fearlessness. If you went to the store and bought something life-changing and the store owner tried to take back what you paid good money for, wouldn't you be upset?

John 16:33- "I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world."

1 John 4:18- There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear...

Jesus' love for you is perfect. You know that Jesus loves you... we go through trials and sorrows so that we may grow and thrive. So every time you face a trial, know that Jesus is with you, just like your parents were when you were afraid of the dark. Their love and protection drove away your fears, so let Jesus' love and protection cover you and drive away your fear. Don't take the fear back. Just take Jesus' hand and find your courage and your strength!

Psalm 27:1- The Lord is my light and my salvation- whom then shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life- of whom shall I be afraid?

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Word of the Day- The Scent of Life and Death

2 Corinthians 2:16-  To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life...

In this world, those who live for the world don't understand the ways of those who are saved. When you live for the world, giving up sinful ways is like death. Since the beginning of time, God has been portrayed as an ogre in the sky who is ready to strike you down if you sin. For those who don't understand who God really is, they see any belief in him as pointless or crazy. A relationship with God isn't viewed as a relationship with God. It is viewed as slavery. God gave us free will. What we as believers need to do is show others the difference between "the freedom to sin" and "the freedom from sin." Show the difference between love and judgement.

"If our love is tragedy, why are you my remedy? If our love's insanity, why are you my clarity?" -Zedd

Word of the Day- No Comparison

Sometimes you feel like you are behind... like those around you know something that you don't... People sometimes feel that way when it comes to their relationship with God. They look at their fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, and suddenly, they are comparing their relationship with God with those around them. Now, I have done this myself, so I am guilty as charged. But here is a great way to look at it: consider yourself married to God. In a marriage, what may work for one couple, may not work for another. Each marriage is different, and has it's own way of functioning. And in your walk/relationship with God, treat it like you would a marriage. So in this sense, considering that we are the bridegroom, we should "submit to our husband" (Eph 5:22).
Philippians 2:12-13- “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed – not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence – continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his purpose.”

Word of the Day- The Purpose In Knowing Your Purpose

Jeremiah 29:11- "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 a hope and a future."
Begin each day as if it were on purpose. You know why you should? You should because you HAVE a purpose. Don't let the struggles in life bring you down. Every day that you wake up is another day that you have a purpose, and each day has a purpose of it's own. And always remember that God is there for you every day, every step of the way.
Deuteronomy 31:6- "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."

Word of the Day- Knowing Your Authority

Matthew 16:15-19- He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” 

Never doubt your authority! This is something that I have been learning about. I was talking to a friend of mine about this very same thing. I felt like I had no authority over certain things happening in my life. I had began to feel like my authority wasn't existent or that I had done something wrong. But the truth is that it was never gone. When Jesus died on the cross, the authority that we lost when we fell into sin was given back to us. So if you are like me, feeling like you don't have the authority, remember it has always been there for you!