Tuesday, August 29, 2017
Ever heard the song that goes, "be careful little eyes what you see, be careful little eyes what you see, because our Father above, He's looking down with love, so be careful little eyes what you see"? It's a children's song, but it still shows us something today.
It goes on to say "be careful little ears what you hear. Be careful little hands what you do. Be careful little mouth what you say. Be careful little feet where you go..."
I was wondering what I should post about today and well, God showed me (and convicted me).
We live in a dark, sinful, evil world. But I heard somewhere that it isn't just dark because of the dark, but because of the absence of light.
We are to be in the world, not of the world.
To be honest it's easy to be caught up in what the world does. But like that song says, we need to guard our ears, eyes, mouth, and watch what our hands do and feet go.
Sometimes it's easy to be able to tell what's good and bad. But other times it's easy to be distracted by what isn't exactly bad, but what distracts us from the Bible. An idol is anything that takes place above God. We say, 'of course I don't worship idols'... but are you putting something above God or your time with God? Is there something stopping you from doing what God wants you to do? Examine your life right now.
Romans 12:2 says, "Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God."
Do not be conformed to this age. Don't fall into the trap of this sinful world. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind so that you can discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.
Philippians 4:8, "Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things."
Whatever is pure, lovely, commendable, whatever has moral excellence, if there is any praise... dwell on those things. It's easy for your thoughts to wander, sometimes they can wander to bad things. Don't dwell on that. Don't dirty your mind with the world's garbage. It's not healthy. Dwell on what is good. Dwell on Jesus.
Matthew 16:26, "What will it benefit a man if he gains the whole world yet loses his life? Or what will a man give in exchange for his life?"
There is no benefit to gaining the world if you lose your soul. The world and it's things are temporary (Matthew 6:19-21). But God is eternal.
Jim Elliot, a missionary to Ecuador, who was killed for his faith, said these words, "He is no fool who gives up what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose."
It's better to give up what we can't keep, to gain what we can't lose.
Meaning: it's better to give up something that is temporary... like if something is taking its place above God, or if it's not good. To gain what we can't lose. Jesus is the One thing we can't lose. Our faith in Him, our joy and love in Him, we can never lose that.
Examine your life. Is there anything that takes place above God? Is there something you are more obsessed with than God and His Word? Something that you love more than God and His Word? Are there thoughts that you think about regularly that are not good? Are you shining His light on this dark world?
God has convicted me with this post. These are hard questions. Really think about them.
Always remember: this world is temporary, God is eternal. Look up.
Shine His light :)
Tuesday, August 22, 2017
Last Saturday night I was lying in bed awake, I couldn't fall asleep. As usual I had a million thoughts running through my brain and a question came to mind. I've thought about this question before...
What if someone told you that you had one year to live?
I started thinking about how I would be joyful all the time and share Jesus to random people and just live each day to the fullest among other things.
But then another thought occurred to me.
Why am I not living that way now?
We aren't promised tomorrow... that phrase is used a lot and after a while it loses what it takes to make me think about it. But for some reason the question about living just one more year really got me thinking. But then the question why I'm not living that way now really convicted me.
In Philippians 1:21 Paul says, "For me living is Christ and dying is gain."
Paul got the real picture. The thing is, while here on earth we get to bring glory to God's great Name, and if we die and we have confessed Jesus as our Lord and Savior then we get to go to heaven to spend time in His glory.
It's not about dwelling on the fact about us dying. It's about dwelling on the question how are we going to live each day knowing we will die one day.
I'm not trying to be morbid here, but these are facts we need to face. We aren't promised tomorrow, or next week, or a year.
How are we living our lives? Are we living with eternity in view? Because this world and it's things are temporary.
Matthew 6:19-21 says, "Don’t collect for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don’t break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
Philippians 1:27, "Just one thing: Live your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ."
We are to live each day, each moment, for what it's worth. We are to live in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ. There are so many ways we can live for Him in our day to day lives.
So let's live for Christ today.
How are you living each day? What would you do if you had one year to live? Are you living that way now? Are you living with eternity in view? Are you living your life in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ? Are you living each moment for Him?
These questions have really convicted me... so really think about them. Examine your own life.
Live for Him. :)
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
We all have talents or gifts. Something that we're good at. God gave us these talents and gifts for a reason.
There are talents, such as dancing, drawing, writing, being good with kids, cooking... ect.. And there are also spiritual gifts that God gives believers. So if you have been saved by God's grace then you have a spiritual gift.
It's important to know what talents and/or spiritual gifts you have so that you can use them for God's glory. Let's say that you are a huge people person and love to talk, well there you go. You can talk to people, build relationships, and share the gospel. Or strengthen people in Christ if you have the spiritual gift of encouragement. Or maybe you're the kind of person who likes to do the 'behind the scenes things'. Well at your church then there could be many things you could do. Just ask someone. And your spiritual gifts aren't limited to church. You can serve in your home as well.
1 Corinthians 12:4-6, "Now there are different gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different ministries, but the same Lord. And there are different activities, but the same God activates each gift in each person."
Now let's talk talents. Everyone has different talents. Sometimes your talents aren't as obvious. For instance, I have a sister who doesn't have a talent you might think of (besides cooking, she's a great cook) but she is great with kids. She uses that to bring glory to God.
So think about what your talent is or could be your talent. I have a couple of suggestions...
1.) Practice that talent. If it's singing then sing. If it's drawing then draw.
2.) Look for ways you can bring glory to God through it. For me, I love writing. I try to use this blog to bring God glory. I also sing so I sing in our youth band.
3.) Also, remember, whatever you're talented at, see if that's what you're passionate about.
It's great to be passionate about something, and to use that passion to bring God glory.
So no matter what you do: do everything for the glory of God.
Colossians 3:17, "And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him."
Tuesday, August 8, 2017
(Detroit, Michigan to the left. Windsor, Canada to the right)
This past week I went on a mission trip to Detroit, Michigan/Windsor, Canada. It was amazing. There are so many things I learned, so here are a few....
Fellowship : one thing about mission trips is that the team you go with... well, you're with them almost 24/7 so you'll get to know them. The fellowship is amazing and you feel more comfortable around them... your brothers and sisters in Christ.
Going out : going out and sharing the gospel in different cultures. We are called to show love to everyone, whether Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and so on... they are people, like us. We are called to show them hope, to shine His light in the darkest of places.
Flexibility : over the past two years or so then flexibility has been a key word on the mission trips to Detroit, Michigan/Windsor, Canada. No, not the flexibility in gymnastics... otherwise I would be in bad shape (no pun intended). But sometimes we want everything to go according to plan. Well, that's not going to happen most of the time. Our plans will change, and sometimes we end up doing something completely different then expected.
Patience : flexibility has been a key word, but along with it has been patience. And let me just say that patience isn't exactly my strong suit. But no matter where - whether on a mission trip or just a regular day - patience is very important. The Bible says that love is patient (1 Corinthians 13:4). Let's try to be patient :)
Trials : we are going to go through trials. Being a Christian isn't easy, you're going to have a hard life because of it. But it's worth it.
Let's not forget to be on mission for Jesus everywhere, all the time. Let's shine His light :)