Friday, June 29, 2007

What Are We?

I have so much "rolling around" in my head today with revival going on (It is wonderful, by the way) and Anita's post on Lutheran worship. I am not sure that she is a "typical Lutheran" by standard. Not that I would know what the typical Lutheran is since I haven't known one until I *met* her. I am only resting this on the evidence I have witnessed in her writings, which brings me to my point. It is so easy to have a mental conception of some one else's denomination or style of service. What I mean by style of service is how a person lives their life daily for the Lord.....not their church program. That is why we are serve HIM and by serving Him, we will serve others. Anita makes it clear that she is a server. I like that.

I don't believe God EVER intended us to be segregated by religious labels. He hasn't tried to "trick" us with different choices that we hope is the "right" one that gets us to heaven. NO. No. No. He has made it so simple, but man is responsible for "cluttering up" the way with " you have to do this" and "you can't do that" or " if you're not a believer in this particular denomination" and blah, blah, just goes on and on.

Because of these labels, we have a society that is full of fear. Fear of not doing the "right " thing or saying the "right" prayer that they will lose their soul forever. This is not of God. How does being afraid of our Father bring Him glory? It doesn't. Just imagine your own children. We know it has been said that children are a reflection of their parents. What are your children saying about you if they are cowering in fear while trying to carry out simple chores of everyday life? We know these chores were being done ONLY because of their fear and not because of their love and respect for you. There is a difference. Just as we want a close relationship with our children, one of love and respect, so does our heavenly father.

Another reason labels can hinder one is because they make a person think they have act or behave like everyone else in "their" belief system. It will cause them to stay "stuck" in a group because "I am not supposed to worship or act like that." Even though their heart is longing to feel what others are experiencing. Why are people so afraid of the Spirit of God? Labels. I am convinced it is being labled. Again, I am not saying we should be "willy nilly" and just do "whatever feels good." I am saying get on your face before God and don't be afraid to pour your heart out to Him. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you and He will. Once we do this, we'll know how to serve. His spirit is real and alive. Some have tried to make Him a figment of imagination or a cold, dead statue, but HE IS ALIVE! Don't be afraid. Don't rely on what man tells you.... Find out for yourself!

I have witnessed the Spirit of God this week in revival. It has been glorious. Praise God! I have seen walls coming down while people of different faiths have been worshipping. That is what we were created to do......worship! I have seen people weeping before the Lord with hearts and hands raised. I have seen some sitting on the pews quietly engulfed in the secure presence of the Lord. I have seen others that would have been too embarrassed to lift a hand in honor to God raise both hands. I believe lives are being changed forever! God will pour out His spirit where there is a hungry heart. I don't know about you, but His Spirit is Life to me.

There's only one way to heaven and this doesn't include a *magic formula* or "seven steps to self-righteousness" found in some book written with the intentions of making the top ten. Before you think I am against reading other books, let me just say that I am not. What I am saying is the bible must be read first so that you will be able to comprehend what is truth and how it should be applied to your life or what is false that should be tossed out. JESUS is the ONLY way to heaven. How do I know? The bible tells me so. I believe Jesus is the son of God, that He died for my sins, was resurrected on the third day and now sits on the right hand of God making intercession for me. Hallelujah! Do you believe this simple truth and share in love of Christ with me? If not, you can. Are you ready to trade the tumoil of life for the peace of God? Ask Him to forgive you of your sins and come into your heart to live. He will and it will be glorious and life changing!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

A Sermon Worth Repeating

My friend Sara has a way of posing some interesting thoughts to chew on. She has challenged me to think on more than one occassion. One of the recent discussions made me think of this. Particularly the quote at the bottom.

The message, though written years ago, is a timely one. I hope you are blessed by it as I was I.

"Having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust."—2 Peter 1:4.

VANISH for ever all thought of indulging the flesh if you would live in the power of your risen Lord. It were ill that a man who is alive in Christ should dwell in the corruption of sin. "Why seek ye the living among the dead?" said the angel to Magdalene. Should the living dwell in the sepulchre? Should divine life be immured in the charnel house of fleshly lust? How can we partake of the cup of the Lord and yet drink the cup of Belial? Surely, believer, from open lusts and sins you are delivered: have you also escaped from the more secret and delusive lime-twigs of the Satanic fowler? Have you come forth from the lust of pride? Have you escaped from slothfulness? Have you clean escaped from carnal security? Are you seeking day by day to live above worldliness, the pride of life, and the ensnaring vice of avarice? Remember, it is for this that you have been enriched with the treasures of God. If you be indeed the chosen of God, and beloved by Him, do not suffer all the lavish treasure of grace to be wasted upon you. Follow after holiness; it is the Christian's crown and glory. An unholy church! it is useless to the world, and of no esteem among men. It is an abomination, hell's laughter, heaven's abhorrence. The worst evils which have ever come upon the world have been brought upon her by an unholy church. O Christian, the vows of God are upon you. You are God's priest: act as such. You are God's king: reign over your lusts. You are God's chosen: do not associate with Belial. Heaven is your portion: live like a heavenly spirit, so shall you prove that you have true faith in Jesus, for there cannot be faith in the heart unless there be holiness in the life.

"Lord, I desire to live as one
Who bears a blood-bought name,
As one who fears but grieving Thee,
And knows no other shame."

C. H. Spurgeon


Pray For Revival

We're in revival this week so please pray for a mighty outpouring of God's Spirit upon us. I would also like to ask you to pray for my daughter and a situation that involves her. We are praying God's will in this matter.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Ten Commandments

While searching online I found the Ten Commandments of Helen Steiner Rice. She is one of my favorite inspirational poets, but I had not heard of these before. I enjoyed them so much I wanted to share with you. Have a blessed day, everyone!

1. Thou shalt be happy

2. Thou shalt use thy talents to make others glad.

3. Thou shalt rise above defeat and trouble.

4. Thou shalt look upon each day as a new day.

5. Thou shalt always do thy best and leave the rest to God.

6. Thou shalt not waste thy time and energy in useless worry.

7. Thou shalt look only on the bright side of life.

8. Thou shalt not be afraid of tomorrow.

9. Thou shalt have a kind word and a kind deed for everyone.

10. Thou shalt say each morning -- I am a child of God and nothing can hurt me.

Helen Steiner Rice