April 22, 2012 Comments Off on When the Sun Goes Down
What about the parents who pray and their child never gets well? What about when the job loss comes? The relationship that never comes together because of the divorce or the cheating? We all have examples in our own life when we asked God for something and nothing happens. You didn’t do anything wrong, but the events beyond your control forced you away from your dream, your wish.
Sometimes the good, Godly people are the ones that have it the hardest because we think we are doing everything God has asked us to do and nothing is happening.
Nobody can answer what God’s will is, but it’s not a question of “why” God, but “what” do you want to do in my life God?
Seize the opportunity of your adversity to see Gods glory. What if our greatest hurt, our greatest crisis to see what Gods plan is for our life. Seek Him more in this time of pain and confusion.
What would it look like for you to be the miracle in a situation of pain for your life? Seize the potential of the pain to see what God wants to teach you- you have to trust in Jesus as the sun goes down.
God does not always answer our prayers, but He will NEVER waste our faith. God works on our behalf, even when it seems are prayers are being answered. Sometimes the greatest setback in our lives are the greatest setups to see God in our life and to grow a relationship with Him that will last us an entire lifetime.
April 22, 2012 Comments Off on Wrong Well
John 4:1-26 (Woman at the well)
We believe that we have to hide our sin to be a christian, we believe that we have to hide our deficiencies – that we have to be perfect to be a christian. But we have to allow ourselves to expose our flaws and sins to Jesus to be healed.
There are so many of us that go to the wrong wells that we go to draw our source of happiness and life.We go to all the wrong wells to satisfy our thirst. 3 wells that we go to that are wrong:
- Well, I am not worthy. We ask God why He would even want someone want us, a sinner. We feel that we are unworthy of Gods love and that we can’t be of any use to His plan. However, when God lays out commands for our life we are supposed to follow. But sometimes we feel like God is asking too much of us and we will always fall short. But I don’t have it and God doesn’t need it- holiness is not what God wants from me, it’s what He wants for me. It’s why Jesus died. God doesn’t command me to live life His way to deprive me of what is good, He commands me to live a certain way to get something that is so much better. If we knew how much Jesus wanted to bless us, we wouldn’t be focused on how much we are missing out on when all of our friends are having sex and drinking. We do not know that plan that God has for our life. Do not ever think that anyone has ever done something great for God that hasn’t sacrificed an even greater cost for the cause of Jesus on this earth. God’s commands aren’t about what we wants from me, but for me. If you knew who God was, you wouldn’t have to fall into sin to be satisfied. We tell God what He can and cannot do in our lives, even though Jesus is Lord.
- Well, it’s too hard. We feel like we really want to change and live our life for God, but we think our situation is too hard to live the way God has called us to live. It’s time to stop going to the same source of your happiness. The source of true satisfaction is what Jesus wants to do inside of us. We think that if we get the right relationship, the right GPA, the right salary, but we will never be satisfied because it’s the wrong well. We feel like the pain is too much, like we can’t go on because our life is so devastating but we are neglecting to realize the reality of what was nailed to a cross two thousand and twelve years ago. We do not need what the world tries to tell us what we need to do, what we need to sacrifice because we have a spring of living water inside of us- we have a God that loves us more than anyone ever could. Even if we aren’t feeling loved from the person we love, we have a father in heaven that loves us. God calls us out of our sin, He doesn’t overlook it and pretend it’s not there. We have to let go and leave the other wells of our happiness for the spring of living water that Jesus offers us! We think that the next relationship is going to satisfy us, the next hookup, the next girlfriend and boyfriend will do for us will make us happy. But it will never satisfy our soul that we have so longed to satisfy for years of pain we have gone through. It’s not going to work.
- Well, not now. We want to live our college life, we want to live the wild life and we will get our act together later. Jesus doesn’t ask for a raincheck, the time is now. We are placed on the earth for a very specific reason- every day we have to live for God. God wants to clean us up where we are at, to show us off and use us because He loves us and made us. Jesus wants to change us not because He is ashamed of us, but because He wants to use us and show what He can do through the least of these.
We are all human beings and fall short of the glory of God. But the moment when we put our foot down and realize that Jesus is our source of happiness, love, and joy- we find a whole new level of our relationship with God.
April 17, 2012 Comments Off on Call To Arms
For everyone that was ever told you weren’t good enough, for everyone that was ever told you weren’t beautiful, weren’t worthy, weren’t gifted- they are wrong.
We are all uniquely and wonderfully made, we are all molded and fashioned to be instruments and vessels of truth of the most high God. We are all made in the image of God, He spent time planning your life- creating the very individual hair on your hair. Don’t ever believe that you were a mistake, don’t ever believe that you have no reason to live or to go on another day.
God gave us our passions, God instilled the very strains of DNA that would be passed on for generations through our families. God created and perfected recreation of human life. God sent His only Son to become like man and to bare the weight of the world in His body that hang on the cross. He took both of our places, He endured a pain unknown to man as he bore the entire weight of the world for you and for me, so that we would have a chance to spend eternity with Him.
Let us set aside our lust. Let us set aside pornography. Let us flee from sin. Let us never forget the suffering and love that was poured out on a cross. Let us never forget that He is God and we are not. Let us set aside the aching feeling to belong to something when a loving God has his arms outstretched.
Let it rain God, open the flood gates of Heaven. We want to see more of you God, we want to be in your presence. We come before you in a time of need and time of brokenness, piece us together. Mold us Lord, create us to be the men and women that you have called us to be. Let us never forget our place at the Kings table, we are merely your servant your Lord. Strengthen our arms, sharpen our tongues, make our hearts beat quick for things that are pleasing and holy to you Oh Lord. We will not be silent.
Women are never meant to be possessed, to be raped or beaten. Let us find hope in You when there is no hope for us to see, we want to see you- show us your glory God. We want to know you. Let the men of this world honor and cherish, let them put a sacrifice before their family and their wife. May they never forget the commitment that have made to you God before their wives.
To know and believe in the name of Jesus Christ is to have freedom, to have love, and compassion for each and every person. Jesus was crucified so that we would know His name, so that we would know that He loved us and paid the ultimate sacrifice for each of us, individually. God specifically placed YOU on this earth for the year 2012. God gave you a beating heart to pursue the passions He gave you. Just put your hand over your heart, feel the beat- know that God hand crafted and designed every micrometer of your heart so that you could glorify Him.
We can be the change God, let us be the change. Use me God, use me to be your instrument. I am yours God, take control and never let go of me. Add and remove of my life, it is yours. Let my mess become my message of your enduring love, of your kindness and goodness in times of sorrow. You are all that I need Lord, in you I find my happiness. Let this be a time of change, let us rise up.
Grant me favor so that I may bring you honor, grant me favor so that I may proclaim your name from the highest mountain top. Choose me God, use me God to speak your word. I kneel before you oh Lord, for you are my Father that I love, for you are my Master, my strength. May you fasten the full armor on my body, may you sharpen my sword to do your work.
For many of us, the world gives us things to be interested in. The world flashes success in front of our eyes, just as the snake flashed the fruit to Eve in the Garden of Eden. We seek after our interests rather than our God given passions.
My prayer is that our life would be filled with our God given passions. We are so easily deceived by what the world offers because our generation is not able to look beyond what gratifies our happiness of today. Let us be the generation that rises up, let us be the generation that breaks down the walls. He has won the victory, our battle has been fought for us- on the cross. Death couldn’t hold Him down, He is the risen King, He is the reason for our happiness.
No cars, no clothes, not even the cheap thrills could ever fill us with the joy of living a life of God can bring. Let us be the college students God has called us to be, let us pursue God. We are not called to be silent, we are called and created to be aliens- stand outs from everyone else because we have a reason to be- Jesus Christ.
Let us be Men of God. Let us learn to forsake our childhood and rise to be Men. Let us not be tied down by immaturity and lust, let us break free from our bodies and chase God. We were never created to be boxed in and put away- we are created to rule and live with God. Let us be the future fathers of our generation that honors our families, let us restore leadership to our households. Let us be servants to our wife’s, let us rise up and fight the battle that God has laid before us- we are not silent.
Jesus never died so that you would live in condemnation, so that you would be a slave to your own sin. He overcame death, he overcame the grace, and He is conquerer, Almighty God, The Alpha and Omega. Let us never forget whom we serve, let us never be content with our faith. Let us want more of you God.
Though none go with me, I will follow Jesus. We have decided to follow Jesus, we have decided to be the difference. Let us unite together, as one voice, as one army, as one generation. Together we can be the difference, with men things are impossible, but with God all things are possible.
I will not be silent.
I will not be ashamed.
I am forgiven.
I am loved.
I am a child of the King.
I am created in His Image.
My sin is paid for.
My sin is was beaten into the flesh of my Savior.
Because He tells me so.
April 16, 2012 Comments Off on Box Builder, Box Cutter
But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” -Matthew 19:26
A box is a box, no matter any way you look at it or build it- it will always be a box. One of the most practical uses for boxes is being able to label them to notify you what’s inside for a later time. We write “house goods” and only put house goods in the box, but anything else has to go in a separate place and we won’t allow it in that particular box.
This is the exact manner that we so often times approach God, we put God’s ability to move and use our life in a box. We label our life (or box) and tell God this is what you can use me for today- that is it, nothing else. I am only capable of taking on this task or speaking to these certain people and that is it. We build a box.
Another way we use our box against God is we tell Him our capabilities. We tell God that we aren’t good enough to speak, to sing, to be a witness, to do the right thing- we tell God we are worthless and have nothing to offer. We build another box.
So I have a question to ask: are you a box builder or a box cutter?
I have already laid out the characteristics of the box builder, the one that tries to tell God their capabilities and limits. But the box cutter is someone special.
The box cutter is someone that admits his limits, but acknowledges that with God all things are possible. The box cutter makes a conscious decision every day to trust God, no matter the cirucmstances. The box cutter approaches God on their face asking God to use them in any way and to remove any boxes in any areas of their life. Fully stepping out of their box, cutting their way out.
So who are you going to be today? Are you going to continue to box yourself in your life and rely on your human abilities? Or are you going to step out boldly, in faith knowing whom you serve? The only name under heaven with the power to save, the only one that took a beating so that you could live in freedom and let the past go.
April 13, 2012 Comments Off on Vertical or Horizontal?
As we continue to grow into our lives, we have new objectives and new goals each and every day. As we continue to grow in our relationship with others, we get deeper and deeper with our feelings. And as we continue to grow in our relationship with God we continue to grow closer in our communication with Him.
However, sometimes we focus too much on our horizontal life and forget about our vertical one.
Jesus says in Luke 12:34 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Notice that Jesus did not say that we should put our treasures where our own hearts lead us to. So often times we allow our emotions and feelings to lead us into action, whether in a relationship, investment, or decision.
Prayer is our pathway to growing our vertical relationship with God. Becoming closer to Gods heart allows us to follow His perfect plan for our life better by having a better understanding of His will.
Spending too much time in our horizontal relationships trains us to lean on our own understanding; therefore, forgetting about God in general and only seeking what our flesh desires.
Spending too much time in our vertical relationships keeps us from being effective on others. You can never spend too much time with God, but it is possible to neglect the people in our daily lives that need Jesus the most.
Through it all, we serve a God that loves us and created us to spend time with Him- it’s why He created Adam. God wants us to be with Him, God wants us to have a relationship with Him, but a relationship is a two-way street and you have to be willing to make an effort to see your relationship grow with your Heavenly Father.
April 10, 2012 Comments Off on Unchangeable Easter
“He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said.” -1 Corinthians 15:4
Easter was this past weekend, but I wanted to touch on an aspect of Easter that I believe gets left out. An important significance of 1 Corinthians 15:4 that isn’t mentioned a lot.
To me, Easter is about an unchangeable situation that everyone deemed was unchangeable. It couldn’t be reversed by the standard of the times, the Romans did everything they could to prevent anything from going in and out of the tomb of Jesus. They had soldiers sand guard and sealed the tomb with an enormous stone that weighed tons. To them and the rest of the world, it was a situation that was unchangeable- he was dead.
For you see, both Daniel (in the lions den) and Lazarus had stones rolled over where they were as well. It was a sign of the time that there was no way of getting out of the situation these people found themselves in- it was unchangeable to society.
But we all know that Jesus was resurrected, Daniel survived the night in the lions den, and Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead. In all three situations, the stone that was supposed to have prevented anything BUT the original plan became a non factor.
Here’s the deal, throughout our life we are going to face situations that we deem would be unchangeable. We face immense trials and hardships that we believe will never end. Maybe it’s a illness, an immense financial crisis, a body image issue, a long drought of singleness without a spouse, or a divorce. All these situations seem unchangeable, we think that there is no way anything could possibly change, we believe that the circumstances cannot possibly ever support a change for the better.
But our unchangeable circumstance is no match for our unchanging God. Our Gods unchanging love, mercy, forgiveness, and freedom that He gives us everyday has far greater power than any of our circumstances. If we remember just how much He loves us and how awesome of a plan He has for our life, I think our “tomb” has a chance to be rolled away.
April 4, 2012 Comments Off on Duty of Honor
8 “‘These people honor me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me.” -Matthew 15:8
Honor (def): To esteem publicly, to value, or to esteem.
The word “honor” is becoming more distant with each generation that is born. The definition is being lost in a society that concentrates its efforts on appeasing the consumer through making life easier and more beneficial for each of their own.
For many of us, I think we know and accept who God is, but do not honor nor esteem God. We believe He is real and we believe that Jesus died for us in our mind, but we do not honor God with our lives.
Prosperity yields distance from honor. For so many of us we can so easily get caught up in our jobs, our futures, or other things that are going well for us that we forget to ever even thank the one who has given us this opportunity. We allow lives and accomplishments to become our own sense of honor towards ourselves.
Have you ever thought of the value that we place on honor? How do we assign such honor to something or someone? We place a weight (value) on that thing that we honor. Have you ever thought about how much honor is worth it’s weight? Have you considered that the weight of God is unbearable because He deserves so much honor?
More than anything, Gods word should carry weight in our lives. God’s word cannot and should not be taken lightly because when we begin to disvalue the weight of something that deserves to be honored, we lose sight of the true value over time.