Saturday, June 7, 2014

Will the Real Christians Please Stand Up!

Luke 18:18-30 (NLT)

Once a religious leader asked Jesus this question: “Good Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?” “Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked him. “Only God is truly good. But to answer your question, you know the commandments: ‘You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not testify falsely. Honor your father and mother.’” The man replied, “I've obeyed all these commandments since I was young.” When Jesus heard his answer, he said, “There is still one thing you haven’t done. Sell all your possessions and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” But when the man heard this he became very sad, for he was very rich. When Jesus saw this, he said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the Kingdom of God! In fact, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God!” Those who heard this said, “Then who in the world can be saved?” He replied, “What is impossible for people is possible with God.” Peter said, “We've left our homes to follow you.” “Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, will be repaid many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come.”

So, me and Rebekah have been to a lot of churches in the last few years and we are having trouble finding one that feels like home. It is hard to find anybody that wants to be real. To be real friends, and do real life together. Everyone we meet seems to just want to go to church on Sunday and maybe Wednesday and then get back to their own busy lives. It's like they're afraid of anyone seeing who they really are outside of church. Like if you spent any time around them for real you might see that they aren't perfect.

As I was reading my Bible I came across the story of the rich young ruler (or religious leader depending on your version). The thought came to me that maybe that is the trouble with Americans. We are all so rich compared to the rest of the world and it takes up a lot of time and energy to keep it that way. Maybe so few people in America can be real because if they met the real Jesus and spent some time talking to Him they would find themselves walking away very sad.

Do you have what it takes to meet the real Jesus? To walk up to Him and ask "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Could you handle the answer? Are you willing to try?

I think we need to get real with ourselves and with Jesus. Start asking the tough questions. Dig deep. Are we ready to do what ever it takes to inherit the kingdom of God? Shouldn't that be the only thing we are really concerned about? Does anything else even matter?

I will be writing more on eternal perspective next!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Intimacy With Our Creator

Why is it so hard to listen to God? Is it because we never try? Or maybe we never knew we could. To hear God, straight from the source. That is what I need in my life and what I have been missing for most of it. I have always believed that God was there for us, believed that he was real and that he cared for us. But I always struggle with really getting to know Him. I look back and wonder how many messes might I have avoided if I had just stopped and asked God what to do. Life is hard enough even with help. Why would we try and do it all on our own. This is where I am at, learning to listen, learning to trust, learning to follow.

It has been a rough year for me and my wife and kids. A lot has happened. In all the craziness I grew lazy with my relationship with God. Other things got in the way. I stopped making time for God. 

This is a little update of what has happened and where things are at. I also want to share a couple songs that are good pictures of where I am at in my walk and that have helped me pull through. 

A little over a year ago, my father-in-law past away. It was a very hard time for Rebekah and a hard time for the whole family. After dealing with that and all the craziness of raising a baby and a toddler, I realized that, due to some poor decisions and bad money management on my part we couldn't afford to live in the house that we were planning on staying in for the next four to five years. So, in January we moved in with my mother-in-law who was nice enough to let us invade her home. Now we are trying to get out of debt and figuring out what the next few years will look like.

That is some of what has happened that has brought me to the place of realizing how badly I need to stay focused on God. How I can't keep going along, trying to do the best I can. I need to be communicating with God on a personal level, hearing His voice, and asking Him what he wants me to do and what He wants for my family.

I heard this song and God kind of woke me up:

Then He used this song to start speaking to my heart and drawing me back to Him:

And this song is a good picture of where I am at now:

So, that is what has been happening and where I am at. I should be posting more regularly again from now on.