Tag Archives: Romans 8

We Speak of Him

somethin

“Why on earth did You allow that to happen?” A question posed to God on a pretty regular basis with me; especially in the wake of the recent news reports. I don’t even watch the news but it’s so horrific that it’s a part of the conversation in every venue of life. So I’m pondering that question again today… “Why God? What could possibly be the purpose?” We know Romans 8:28 says “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”  We know the breakdown of it (all things work) not all things are. All things are not good. When people are born sick, killed in a senseless act of terrorism, there is no good in that. So this morning I ponder again, “Why?”

It took me 3500 years to get it… I guess I’m kind of slow.

Romans 9:17-23

17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.

Three types of news spread like wild fire on a dry windy day.

  1. Tragedy
  2. Miraculous epic events
  3. Absolute lies.

So to Pharaoh God said (to Shari quote it) “I made you who you are, because people would tell your story, even though technically… it’s My story.”

The history of the Exodus and the continual provision for the Jewish Nation of God is an ongoing saga and one that captivates the world. Saved and unsaved alike have a fascination in the lives of Israel because they are the chosen people of God. Their story has been filled with tragedy and miraculous epic events that are worthy of sharing… and in so doing… there are conversation of God.

So what does that have to do with the tragedy of the day in the news?

Read on weary pilgrim…

Vs. 18-23

Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth. Thou wilt say then unto me, Why doth he yet find fault? For who hath resisted his will? Nay but, O man, who art thou that repliest against God? Shall the thing formed say to him that formed it, Why hast thou made me thus? Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to shew his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,

The news:

  1. Tragedy
    • In tragedy we seek God to make sense of the unimaginable and we speak of Him.
  2. Miraculous epic events
    • In miracles we acknowledge God for the unexplainable and we speak of Him.
  3. Absolute lies
    • God may be unexplainable, but He is most certain undeniable. And we speak of Him.

If the world were rotating in perfect harmony, no sickness, no heartache, no unexplainable or unimaginable events…. Would we seek Him or speak of Him? No. Adam and Eve are proof. So in the heartache of it all, God allows (He does not create the chaos – we do that) but allows it so that we will see the only steadfast controlling factor of the universe is He Who created all. And we’ll speak of Him.

Speak of Him today…

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God’s Means May Not Mean Money

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I heard someone say, not long after I was saved, that we live far beneath our means. And it’s true. But I fear sometimes that prosperity gospel teachers and the flesh itself convinces believers that as children of God the world is our oyster and because of that we have a right to all we want. God’s means may not mean money. By definition the word means is resources, which could be financial or assets of an entirely different kind. It could mean that we survive by the skin of our teeth for a better day in glory where His world will be our oyster.

But until that day let’s take a reality check.

Romans 8:12-17

12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

“Brethern.” A reminder that they and we are no longer viewed by nation or blood but as children of God. Bought with a price and no longer ruled by the flesh but by the very Spirit of God, leaving us without excuse for falling to the flesh when it says “You deserve…” No, I deserve Hell. But because of the Almighty God engrafting me into His family as an adopted child of grace, I can live above my means. Because I now depend on His resources, not my own.

13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

People who live after the flesh are the walking dead. They are not living in the newness of Christ. It’s the same people that show up to church as 11:00 sharp and leave at 12:00 dull, having received nothing from the service because they had not yielded to the Spirit. They didn’t come at 10:00 sharp for Sunday School because they get “enough” God during the worship hour. Whew! If I stepped on your toe I’m not the least bit sorry. I love ya… but I’m not sorry.

14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Being led by the Spirit of God is tapping into those resources, those means that God grants to every believer for the asking. The resources that fill your heart with so much gladness you don’t have time to notice anything missing from your life.

15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

God didn’t take us to raise because He needed someone to take care of. He took us into His family because He had that much love. He created us… “the Uncreated Creator” as my Pastor says and filled us each with resources to be a blessing to Him. How awesome is it as a parent when your child returns to do something kind for you. It’s not that we need it… but it sure feels nice, doesn’t it? When is the last time that we’ve taken the gifts and talents that God has blessed us with and returned home… not in bondage because God controls us, but because He’s our Father and we love Him like that.

16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

If you’re a child of God, my words should have pricked your heart. It did my own.

17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

Whether or not you have a dime to your name or a matched wardrobe of Loui Vuitton it matters not. Because everything here pales in comparison to what’s there. But everything here has a purpose. Are you using it?

I Traded Jesus for Amazon?

Baby Jesus for free 2

It all began yesterday as I prepared a devotion for the teen Christmas Party and ended this morning as I prepared to write my blog. I told the teens about a woman who stepped out of her car and noticed that her Baby Jesus had been stolen from the Nativity set on her lawn. At first she was angry, and then she began wondering who it was that would have done such a thing? She first thought it was surely menacing teens, then her thoughts went much darker about certain religions that would take it symbolically. So the teens and I discussed who they thought would have taken that Baby Jesus and they basically came to same conclusions that the owner did. But for the rest of the story…

The woman was angry for a little while and then decided for the sake of Christmas she really needed to get past this, so she created a sign and placed it in the manger where the Baby Jesus once lay; it read “You may have stolen the Baby, but you can’t steal Christ! He was crucified, but is risen again and He is alive and well in my heart.”

Well played! And how true!

Nobody can take Christ from us. Romans 8:38-39 reads:

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And yet, my computer gave me a wake-up call this morning I hadn’t anticipated this Christmas. When I open up Google Chrome, there are about 8 pages that I can click on in the order of my most visited sites. Forever and a day, possibly less, my number one visited page is one that I use for my blog and bible studies, www.biblegateway.com. It’s where you’ll find the scripture links I use and it has very useful commentaries and such that are handy when studying the Word.

But today that was not my number one site, it was (I’m ashamed to say) www.amazon.com.

What! How did that get there?

I’ll tell you how it got there. That’s where my Christmas focus has been. Rather than running like a mad woman all over the country to Christmas shop I’ve been on Amazon.com ordering, ordering, ordering, and then checking the status every day. And in all my shopping and checking, I’d traded Baby Jesus on amazon.com, or at least that’s what it felt like when Google Chrome ratted me out this morning.

I haven’t been blogging for the past few weeks because of multiple responsibilities elsewhere, all of which allowed me to let my own immune system to get run down and allow a virus to attach itself to me, to the point I actually considered going to the doctor! But that was way too radical an idea, so I toughed it out, getting to the point of death or so I thought one day. But today I’m on the mend and sick of myself. I had not allowed the Baby Jesus to be stolen from my manger, I had given Him away on Amazon. I’ve not only been physically low I’ve been spiritually low for about two or three weeks with no one to blame but myself. I have allowed the temporary frustrations to take a permanent hold on me. Sad truth from the Jesus Chick.

So today I’ve set myself back on the Jesus journey. The one that puts the Bible back on the front row of Google Chrome and my life and puts my focus back on the whole meaning of Christmas which is Easter! Ha! Bring on the Holidays!

Seriously… You believed that?

I went to sleep last night with this outline on my mind and it was there again when I first awoke this morning; that’s how God works and I love that about Him! The problem then was I couldn’t go to sleep trying to think of scripture that would go along with my outline and why was this outline on my mind? Obviously something God wanted me to hear, and while I love the thoughts of being Spiritually Fed and Led, the thought of being Spiritually Dead made me nauseous. I’ve seen it far too often when a church just doesn’t get it. The only thing they’re missing is an undertaker to remove the bodies (spiritually speaking of course.)

The Spiritually Dead

Hosea 10:1 ~ Israel is an empty vine, he bringeth forth fruit unto himself: according to the multitude of his fruit he hath increased the altars; according to the goodness of his land they have made goodly images.

Israel’s altars were lined, but with images not with people serving God. It’s a crying shame that the altars in America are much the same. The church altar is empty while wealth and possessions have consumed the minds of two generations; it’s scary to think what the next generation will be like when history has proven “what one generation accepts as norm, the next embraces and goes deeper into it.” It doesn’t have to be so.

The Spiritually Fed

Hebrews 5:12-14 ~ For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

If we ate food like we’re fed on the gospel I’m pretty sure there wouldn’t be an obesity issue in America. It’s so easy to put God on the backburner in the course of a day. I speak from shameful experience; God is not always my main course. We wonder why America’s going to “Hell in a hand basket” and yet we have but to look in the mirror. Why else would Hobby Lobby have to fight for their right to their rights? Because Christians have stopped reading the Word of God and listened to the liberal media tell us what’s right. Well that’s wrong.

The Spiritually Led

Romans 8:14 ~ For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

I read a joke on Facebook this morning that Pinocchio entered a liars contest and lost to an American Politician. I won’t name names, mainly because he probably came in 432nd place behind every other knothead on Capitol Hill. (Fictional number, I have no clue how many liars there are). But that’s probably a low number. So you say Pinocchio’s not real… well I’m not sure honest politicians are either.

If you’re a child of God, should it not be God that you go to for the truth. After all He is the truth.

John 14:6

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

We need to stop being led by media and political factions and start being led by the gospel. Open the Word of God or go to a Bible preaching church and you’ll discover that the Word of God reads like what a modern day newspaper should read like. But our local media is filled with more tattles than truth, pointing out the faults of their opposing party.

I know, I’m likely preachin’ to the choir if you take the time to read “The Jesus Chick.” So… share me with someone you love. Perhaps it will give them the desire to come alive! Come to the well of Living Water to feed on the truth and be led away from the wiles of the world.

The Truth About Friday

good friday

John 18:38-40

Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all. But ye have a custom, that I should release unto you one at the passover: will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews? Then cried they all again, saying, Not this man, but Barabbas. Now Barabbas was a robber.

Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? I stopped when I read those words this morning. What is truth? Truth is what Pilate had standing before him; the only truth I’ve ever known. Even Pilate came to his defense ….I find in him no fault at all…. And yet they continued to insist He be crucified and a robber released. There has to be times in every Christian’s life where you say to yourself, ‘how does this make sense? Could there have been no other way?’ I think of what a great friend Jesus has been to me, how His Spirit has ministered to me in countless ways. He has been my Comforter in the days of sorrow, my Conviction in the days of sin, my Comedic relief when life got too serious, yes, He make me laugh. Again I asked and answered my own question.

The truth about Friday is none of that could have been, had Jesus not fulfilled the plan of God. He went willingly as an innocent lamb to slaughter so that we could have the hope of eternity through His resurrection and experience the Holy Spirit living within us. The truth about Friday is Jesus knew about Sunday. He’d told His disciples about Sunday, but in their fear, sorrow and loss they forgot. I’m not pointing any fingers, sometimes I don’t get it either. Like when I ask “Why?” and then I remember, “Oh yeah, He did that for me.” Pilate saith unto him, What is truth?

The truth about Friday is I wish it did not have to be, but I know in my heart there was no other way for me to have forgiveness, there was no other sacrifice worthy except the Lamb of God that would restore the relationship between God and man. Man messed it up with sin, God had to fix it.

The truth about Friday is, I’m responsible for it (and you); our sin caused that whole chain of events to be deemed necessary by God and yet it is good. It is good for us that Jesus was willing to pay the cost so that we don’t have to. It is good that for us Jesus won victory over the grave so that we don’t have to fear it. It is good that regardless of what life hands us, Jesus’ hands let us know that God is ultimately in control of everything and it is good.

Romans 8:28

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

The truth about Friday is it had a purpose… and that purpose was you.