Category: Faith (Page 1 of 2)
Many of you have probably seen this video. Everyone has been sharing it on facebook. It. Is. Amazing!!!! You have to watch it.
I am not a regular viewer of the Today Show. I also do not know much about Frank Gifford. I had heard of him. I had seen him on TV here and there, but didn’t know his “famous” story. The only thing I really knew about the two of them…and that was just a rumor..was that they had a home in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. (I lived there once for a short period. I used to walk by their house for exercise.)
But this story on the Today Show…rather, this testimony…is simply amazing. Here is why I think so…
- NO ONE shares their CHRISTIAN faith on national TV. It might offend someone. It’s the one religion you can’t talk about…or so it seems. But she does a beautiful job of sharing his legacy. The real legacy was his faith, not his football trophies.
- He knew what it was to be poor. “He ate dog food and he was grateful to have it.” (Click to Tweet) Can we even imagine? We want our kids to have this amazing character, but there is simply no way for them to know a lifestyle that breeds the kind of character we hope they have. Thank goodness, right? But, the lessons learned are invaluable.
- He was a grateful human being. How many truly grateful people do you know? We all say we are grateful, but are we really? There is always something stealing our joy and contentment. Business make their living keeping us non-content, scared of what might happen, worried.
- “His world got smaller as his God got bigger.” (Tweet this) #humbled Do. We. Even. Get. That??? That is what the Christian faith is suppose to do for us. His peace silences the big bad world.
- They went to the Holy Land! Really? Hollywood folks went to the Holy Land? Who knew this was even on their radar or of any importance to them?
- “Frank came back with a new perspective.” I have never been to Jerusalem, but I’ve heard the testimonies of many who have. Each person comes back different. They all say it really makes the bible come alive. It’s overwhelming…I hear.
- “Where are you going to throw your stone for the kingdom of God?” (Tweet this) #convicted This really spoke to my heart. Where am I throwing my stone??
- “If you are going to leave a legacy for your children, teach them friendship with God.” This statement just came out of someone’s mouth who speaks on national TV daily. I’m amazed, convicted, I want to cry… not because I’m sad but because I’m reminded of what an awesome God we serve! I’m amazed that his people are all around us and yet we didn’t even know!
- “Transform this hurting world that needs God so much.” Is this church? Because it might just be the best 8 minute sermon I’ve ever heard.
- “Spend the rest of your life trying to throw it well.” #encouraged
- The best statement… “He never had an entitled moment in his life.” (Tweet this) That is the mentality that built America. If I had to point my finger at one thing killing this country, it would be entitlement. Too many take and don’t contribute. But, even more than that, people who have the means to give, give to much…to their kids, to their grandkids… breeding the entitlement mentality. The greatest generation did amazing things because they knew what it was to have nothing. They made something out of nothing.
This testimony really touched me, and from the number of shares, I think it touched many others. Please continue to pray for this sweet sister in Christ. But, even more, I hope you throw your stone far for the Kingdom of God.
God Bless You!
Have you ever heard someone say, “Repent, the Kingdom of God is near!”?
What feelings or thoughts come to mind when you hear that?
One of the ways I’ve seen this verse was futuristic…Jesus is coming back soon, better get my life in order…oh my goodness! And, Luke 20:30 does lend itself to that thought pattern.
But, in John 1:14-15 we see a different concept. What Jesus meant when he said this was literally…the kingdom has come near...it is standing right in front of you!
How much closer can it get?
Jesus was standing there, offering people heaven on earth.
In the Old Testament, there was a system for getting near to God. People made long treks to the temple. They cleansed themselves before coming close to God. And even then, they needed a priest or a profit to tell them the things of God.
Fast forward to the New Testament. God, through his Holy Spirit, would now live on the inside of his people. Awesome news!
The Kingdom of God is near!
I’m so glad He lives on the inside of me, being my comforter, being my peace, my joy! While I love to go to church, I’m glad He doesn’t only reside in church…but in my heart…where I can access him anytime….whether I’m clean or dirty, full of sin or repented. He is there!
Yesterday at church I was reminded of heaven. We heard a beautiful sermon about heaven and all the things we would be doing in heaven. The pastor gave us some scriptures to look up at home because he could not get to all of them.
Today, I looked up one of them…Luke 16: 19-31. This not only gave me a little glimpse of heaven, but a big glimpse of hell. Take a look with me…
(scripture via www.biblegateway.com)
I woke up this morning full of anxiety. I hate anxiety. Don’t like the way it makes me feel…jittery….snappy….shaky…just don’t like it.
Drove the kids to school…still anxious.
Got to work…still anxious.
|Found this cute little scripture at http://courageouscowgirl.blogspot.com|
Then I grabbed my little bible I keep in my desk and read John, Chapter 19 titled, “Jesus Sentenced to be Crucified” and “The Death of Jesus”. This is my least favorite chapter in the bible for obvious reasons. It hurts me all over to read about my Savior being crucified. And, to know they killed an innocent man simply because they didn’t understand who he was or what he was telling them, just hurts me even more.
As I was reading this, I was reminded of a phrase I use often in my line of work, “We eat our own”.
The very people that are trying to do good in a community are the ones that get attacked and destroyed by others in the same community. Everyone jumps up and down about wanting progress, or wanting something new, and they want to “keep the town alive”. Yet, when someone starts making small steps in that direction, they chop them off at the knees, hoping they die out, much like the two men that were hung on the cross beside Jesus. They weren’t all the way dead so the soldiers broke their legs so it could all be over.
But, the bigger picture was that Jesus was a Jew who came to fulfill the Jewish law. He was the savior they had prayed for, waited for, longed for. And, when he came, they did not recognize him and they had him killed out of selfish ambition and fear.
Many times, in community development the person or people trying to be the change that the people want, are often times the ones that those same people devour. On a larger scale, America is much the same way. We devour politicians who are striving to make change for the better. We lump them all in one big basket and complain rather than being part of the solution.
Let’s not “eat our own”. Let’s not be divided on so many different issues. Let’s work harder to see all sides of the coin. Often times that means compromising and working together. Let’s work harder to find common ground. And, in doing this, it will help us all to “love our neighbor as ourself”…the one commandment that Jesus left for us to fulfill. We can do it.
Wrapping up, I want you all to know after cracking open my bible, my anxiety has subsided.
It works every time. Scripture cures all my ailments!
My problems still exist but God has given me peace.
My anxiety is not actually job related (today!), but reading this passage reminded me that we have a tendency to “eat our own”… so that is what I am sharing with you all.
May the peace that passes all understanding be with you today and everyday. God Bless!
|Luke 12:10 Be devoted to one another in love.<sup class="crossreference" style="font-weight: bold; line-height: normal; vertical-align: top;" value="(S)”> Honor one another above yourselves.<sup class="crossreference" style="font-weight: bold; line-height: normal; vertical-align: top;" value="(T)”>|
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 1:1-3
This week has been hectic and I’m feeling a bit worn and tattered! Can anyone relate? I’m sure many of you are in the same boat.
My family and I are still trying to get into the school routine. Up early, to bed late, too many activities starting all at one time and my kids want to go to each one! Then there is pay for this, pay for that, then try to do your regular job on top of all that. Woe. I am exhausted. And, we are commuting an hour back and forth so the car ride alone has me worn out this week.
So, for today’s blog I am focusing on relaxing. Just the word relax makes me feel better. 🙂
|This is cute and made me laugh.|
A heart at peace gives life to the body…Proverbs 14:29-31
It is rare our situations change quickly. We have to find ways to live within our situations and still find peace.
What situation is causing your life to be hectic?
For my family it is commuting that seems to be never ending. We are very close to closing on a house in the town we work in, but now that even looks like it might fall through!
All four of us in the car driving to school and work each day has the potential to leave everyone edgy. Kids are tired, dad is not a morning person, mom is overwhelmed with too many tiny details demanding her attention…you can see the potential fire hazard! (It is imperative we get moved soon, but evidently God has another plan.)
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness… Galatians 5:21-23
My best defuser is Jesus. If I can carve out time to spend with my bible, and listening to the Lord, I’m a better person. Sundays at church are a blessing and feed my soul, but my quite time refuels me more than anything.
So, this weekend, try to relax. You owe it to yourself and your family. And, things always have a way of working out. Have peace that God is in control. Give it to Him and take a break from controlling the universe. (Y’all know I’m preaching to the choir right?) Grab your bible and a cup of coffee and enjoy some time with Jesus this weekend. He adores you!
How do you relax on the weekends?
When the ark was brought to Jerusalem, David gave very specific orders in 1 Chronicles 15:16.
“David told the leaders of the Levites to appoint (emphasis mine) their brothers as singers to sing joyful songs, accompanied by musical instruments: lyres, harps and cymbals.”
The commentary from my NIV study bible reads: The great musical procession was designed as a worthy accompaniment to the great occasion. It heightened the excitement, elevated the people’s hearts and minds, and focused their attention on the event. It also helped seal it in their memory for years to come. Beginning any task by praising God can inspire us to give him our best. Develop the practice of giving praise to God and you will experience greater joy and strength to face anything.
|Photo credit to http://journeyfellowshipchurch.com/worship|
In 1 Chronicles 16:4 David “appointed some of the Levites to minister before the ark of the Lord, to make petition, to give thanks, and to praise the Lord (emphasis mine), the God of Israel.
Later in 1 Chronicles chapter 23, he divides up the Levites, giving them all very specific jobs. Six thousand were to be officials and judges. Four thousand were to be gatekeepers and four thousand were to praise the Lord with musical instruments.
From David’s time on, the use of music in worship was much more organized. Music for the temple became refined. Why do you think this was the case? Why did he put such heavy emphasis on music? Notice he assigned 4000 people to the job – the same number he assigned as gate keepers! Music and security were on the same level in his eyes.
My personal opinion is that David knew something about worship. David knew the power that it held. He knew strength could be drawn from this powerful praise. He had spent years in the wilderness running from Saul perfecting his worship skills. He drew his strength from God through worshipping him. He didn’t have fancy teachers and preachers. All he had was alone time, with God, to praise him.
Not only did he know the power of worship, he understood that worshiping God showed no favoritism. Notice in 1 Chronicles 25: 6-31 how David divided the musicians:
“All of these men … trained and skilled in music for the Lord …. young and old alike, teacher as well as student, cast lots for their duties.”
This is amazing to me. They divided them equally with no regard to age or skill level. My commentary reads “This division of labor gave order to the planning of temple work, promoted excellence by making training easier, gave variety to worship because each group worked a term and provided opportunities for many to be involved.”
I personally love worshiping the Lord through music. And, I think most people do. We may not agree on the type of music or what instruments should or should not be played in the church, but I think we can all agree that there is power power power in worshiping God! I can hear a song on the radio and go directly to the thrown of God without ever hearing a sermon or opening my bible. That is the power of worship. (Disclaimer: I believe strongly in preaching and teaching and especially reading the word of God. I’m simply making a point about the power of worship.)
David got this! He understood it like no one else. He changed the course of history because he believed so strongly in worship. We have to give it that same priority in the house of the Lord. We have to give it that same attention to detail. We especially need to divide the work load – appoint others – pass the baton. But, we have to keep it top of mind, and give it due diligence.
With that in mind, as a parent, I feel it is important to make sure my kids know something about music. I should devote as much time and attention to making sure they learn an instrument as I do making sure they learn their math or how to play baseball. I have not done this! I was not taught to play an instrument, and I regret not possessing that skill. I see the importance. It is a dying art form. Computers can produce music these days. I don’t even need an instrument! So, I really don’t have an excuse.
Today, I’m convicted to be more like David. I’m convicted to change the course of my little world by teaching myself and my kids how to play an instrument, and how to use that talent to praise the Lord. It is just that important!
At the age of 39, I would have expected the unpredictable to have leveled out a bit in my life. Yet, it seems quit the opposite. No matter what area of my life I seem to have under control, there are other areas that simply explode in my face. Can you relate?
For instance, it’s December, and you all know that means the holidays are among us. This usually means a little financial juggling for our family. Shifting some bills around to make a little wiggle room for presents. (This is where I hear Dave Ramsey ranting in my head: “Christmas comes every 12 months! You know this! Why have you not planned ahead and saved money for this????” Can I get an AMEN!!!) But this year, no matter how hard I try, I can’t seem to catch a break. I normally take adversity in stride, knowing God has a plan and simply waiting it out. This year He is really testing my patience…or my juggling skills, not sure which! lol
|Image by Renjith Krishnan.|
Recently, my husband had to go to the ER for a burn on his arm. He tried to go to the clinic, a $60 visit, but it was lunch time so they sent him to the ER instead: a $700 visit. Do the math on that one! A week ago, my son hurt his foot while playing. It appeared to be okay, but now it is hurting him again. This will require an x-ray very soon to determine what is needed. All of a sudden, my daughter’s eyes have decided they need glasses and her teeth refuse to come in straight! Not to mention we are still paying off medical bills from my broken leg a year ago! (Yes, we have some insurance but it never covers everything!)
Normally, we find creative ways to make all our ends meet. We catch a break somewhere and it all comes together. But, right now nothing is turning out that way. I know the Lord says to cast all my cares on him and be anxious for nothing, and that is what I’m trying to do. But, in the honor of full disclosure I have to say… I am anxious. I know I shouldn’t be, but I am. Not just because I may not get my Christmas gifts purchased, but because we have some real needs that are going unmet at the moment. Because I’m embarrassed that I can’t pay my bills on time or maybe even at all right now. Because I am letting people down – I don’t like to let people down! Because I am a Christian and I feel like I’m setting a terrible example! Because I am a responsible adult, contributing to society, holding down a good job (two actually) and it still isn’t enough. It is not enough.
So, I sit and I wait. I’ve done everything I can do in my own strength. I’ve turned over every leaf I know to turn. This one is out of my control.
Honestly, when I let go of that CONTROL is usually when God shows up and shows off. So, I sit and wait for him to do just that! While I may be frustrated and anxious, I know where my hope comes from! I am NOT without HOPE because I serve a mighty God. He hasn’t forgotten me. His ways are higher than my ways. So, I will sit and wait to catch my break from Him.
God bless you all! Merry Christmas.