Posted in Christian Service, Evangelism, Leadership, Life Inspiration, Political

Tired of Politics? Find Yourself a Mars’ Hill

chick at mars

Monday morning. The start of the work week and for me a refocus following an awesome Lord’s Day. I was reading in Acts 17 this morning about one of the many adventures of Apostle Paul and was literally getting frustrated with the characters in the story. It was playing out in my mind like a movie screen reality and I could see the religious lot, with their pious faces, plotting the demise of the man who preached Jesus. Their faces would likely go flush, as men and women alike, one after another, believed Paul’s teaching and gave their lives to Jesus.

My heart broke for the family and friends of Jason who was arrested because they couldn’t lay hands on Paul. They’d take anyone; somebody had to pay for price for the upset in the community. And it was an upset. In verse 6 of that chapter they said of Jason and his friends “These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also.” I wonder if that would be said of any of us. Not me… But in this political climate the name of Christ certainly has an impact.

I think I may have torqued Satan off when it comes to my blog because he has attacked my computer from every angle. This morning was another day of frustrations trying to get this blog posted. After umpteen restarts, a system restore and virus scan, I’m back in business but how mild in comparison to what Paul and his crew went through. I mean really, here I sit whining over computer glitches and these men were paraded around in public and beaten. Now I’m mad again, at me as well as the pious people of religion.

Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill speaking to the men of Athens (vs. 22b-27)

I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious. For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, To The Unknown God. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you. God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:

So to those who have declared war against the God fearing nation of America, those within and without, I reiterate Paul’s message in kind.

You may not like my God, and you can ignorantly choose to serve the god of the unknown, it’s America, you have that right. But my God, Who, by the way, created everyone, regardless of their nationality or faith,  has determined already what day you’ll meet Him face to face. He will only let you go so far. He’s set the boundary on how far this godless bunch of office-bearers can go before He jerks a knot in them. And the God that you choose not to know, and the One that I am proud to know is very close. That brings me peace, and should bring you fear.

“Technical Stuff” and “Political Stuff” may drive me crazy, but knowing God, and that there is no limitation on what God can do causes my soul to joy and gives me the desire to find Mars’ Hill in my own  community and tell someone about Jesus so that others “haply they might feel after him, and find him.”

Posted in Christian Service, Church attendance

Cure for the Common Cold

chick in the snow

On a recent internet cruise (where I randomly google ideas) I googled the words “spiritually cold” and the following question came up on a thread.

What if u r just plain spiritually cold and nothing holds any significance? I go to church it helps for the moment. I read the Bible and I believe what I read only to come back to a place of distance and coldness. What must I do not to be cold…?

My first thought was, “that’s so sad,“ and then I thought “that’s weird place to find someone searching for answers to such a question.” But it was a spirituality forum on, so I guess that’s not so strange after all and praise God they were searching for answers. Most people who are spiritually cold just sit there freezing rather than searching for a solution to their inward drop in temperature. Nobody is immune; this morning it’s a balmy 7 degrees in my neighborhood, and if anyone goes outside without a coat, they’re gonna be cold. If I didn’t have the fires burning in my home this morning that arctic blast would work its way through the walls and windows and the house would be cold too.  The same is true of our spiritual house; if I don’t take some initiative to keep myself warm, the fire won’t go out, but it will get pretty chilly.

So how do we keep the fires burning when life gets chilly? When our pastor of 22 years left in 2014 I worried about our church growing cold as time passed without a new pastor in place. I’d seen it countless times in other churches when the pastor left, slowly the congregation dwindled and struggled to stay encouraged. I don’t take it lightly that God placed me in a church that when faced with the loss of a leader, there were leaders in place that took charge and our church actually grew a little during those times. So how did we do it?

Body heat.

Funny thing about the temperature of a cool room, get a bunch of people in it and it can be sweltering hot quickly. As a church family we stuck closely together. When the doors of the church were open, we were together.

Key – stay faithful. Regardless. No Excuses. Satan will give you any number of excuses that you’ll deem worthy for staying home from church. Don’t buy into any of them, because he knows that there is safety in numbers, both physically and spiritually speaking. Are you in a place of frustration…if at all possible stay put for a while and pray harder until God clearly shows you a path. I hate cold weather, it’s painful to my bones and I immediately want to be warm. But there’s also something about it that invigorates the body. It cause you to get moving! Spiritual coldness can do the same thing if you’re aware of it. Start looking for a place to get moving, a ministry or place of service.

This morning as I prepared this blog I had an “oh snap” moment where I realized it was trash day… 7 degrees… ugh! But it’s a necessity of life and so I bundled up and headed out. A few minutes of getting my things to the curb and I felt the need to do more, so I trekked next door to my Mother’s home and carted her trash to the curb too. Woohoo… bonus points with Mom! A few bonus points with God too no doubt. If I’d stayed in the warmth of the house, necessary things wouldn’t have gotten done and I’d have missed out on a blessing.

The common cold, is a plague in the church. What is it with human nature that causes a comfortable life to be a less productive life? Whether we’re spiritually cold or just in an uncomfortable place we need to stay connected to people. There are times to get away and let God speak to us alone, but that’s not usually a place of service, that’s a place of discovery.

If you’re in one of those moments in time where you just can’t feel God moving, maybe it’s you who need to get moving.

Not satisfied with the direction of your church? Start moving in the direction you feel God leading you and see if anyone follows. They may be waiting on you.

Not heard from God lately? Start moving closer to Him, read His word, hang with His people, listen intently.

That thread on was from 2010. I hope that gal got moving. This morning, I hope we’re all moving!

Acts 17:27-28

That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

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Posted in Christian Service, Leadership, Life Inspiration

Not a Few!

rockstar mom

Acts 17:4

And some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few.

Elevated to an uncommon plateau, the women of Acts 17 must have made quite the impression on Luke, the writer of the book of Acts.  Important women in the community now consorting with the Christians and being saved… and not just a few of them! My oh my, what a testimony of the influence that we can have on our communities. If women of that day, who were more often than not viewed as a piece of property, could influence a multitude of people in their city, what can we accomplish if we’d set our minds to it.

It’s been a heavy burden on my heart lately that I don’t speak out as often or as boldly as I should; that I waste more time than I can afford on nonsense when I should be about the Master’s business. There are days I wish I was as brave as those street preachers who sacrifice themselves on the altar of ugly. Because that’s how people treat them when they see them open air preaching… ugly! I know why, because they’re convicting, but that doesn’t make it right in this supposed free country. Everyone wants the freedom speak their mind but Christians are not allowed to have an opinion at all. And not until the anarchy that’s making its way across American in rapid speed takes the rights of non-Christian’s as well, will they understand. But enough of that soapbox.

My point here today is defining your chiefdom. We’re all famous in our own world but what are we doing with that influence. I have no doubt that my children love me, they both verbalize it quite often for  which I’m grateful, but how much do I use that influence to encourage them for Christ? I try not to be a nag about church… I know it will have an adverse effect. After all they’re grown women. But am I vocal enough in a non-judgmental way to let them know that time is running out? Look at our world and the control that the Islamic State has over us by inciting fear. It consumes the television news and the internet cyberspace constantly. So instead of talking about Jesus, we’re talking about them… there’s something wrong with that.

Today we need to talk about Jesus. You’re a chief in your own land… use it wisely today. Commit to talking about Jesus as much as they’re talking about Islam. If we all did that, we’d influence “not a few!”

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