Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lies and Darkness

It all started with a lie.

Most of us know how the story goes. Adam and Eve are in the garden. God has blessed them with permission to do anything on earth except to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. He promises death if they eat of it.

Then the Devil comes in. And he feeds them a lie. “You will surely not die” (Genesis 3:4) And Adam and Eve bought it.

I believe the most destructive thing the Devil ever did was to create a lie. With it, he separated all of mankind from God. And lies today still have a lot of destructive power. Breeding mistrust, anger, injecting pain, etc. We can drown in a sea of lies never knowing our true identity that the Father waits for us. And that how we live now, where the world is headed is not what his master plan is about.

In speaking to the Pharisees Jesus said:
"You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies." John 8:44

Christ compels us instead to be truthful, and I believe that starts with our lives first and foremost. We cannot live lives of sin and claim Him as our Father. To lie in any way shape or form is disobedience, which doesn’t come from love for God.

"We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did." I John 2:3-6

Walk in truth. Don't let any part of you remain in the shadows hiding. Everything will be brought to the light at the end of days.

Its better living everything in the light.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Starting another blog, keeping this one going too.

Just wanted to give a heads up, I've started a new blog titled "Whimsical Thoughts on the Fridge." My purpose in creating the blog is to share writings that aren't spiritual. Sometimes I like to write to write, or to rant, or to write for the delight of others.


I'm keeping this blog going. I need to sort through some things before I post again. But expect it soon.

Covered in His Dust.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

In Different Shoes

As I was laying in bed, my thoughts turned to the story of the Lost Son in Luke 15. Click here if you haven't read the account before. My thoughts turned into a message, and so here I am at 12:30AM posting a blog with something God has laid on my heart so share with people, even if its just you dear reader.

There was this father who had 2 sons. One day the younger came to him, and asked for his share of the families wealth. Upon receiving it, he moved away and began to live every hour engaging in every kind of pleasurable activity. Eventually the son's wealth ran out, and he was forced to stoop to eating with pigs.

He came to his senses one day, and deciding that working for his father as a servant is better than his current life, he returned home. His father saw him coming off in the distance and recognized him instantly. His father had waited for him! When he returned he took in his son as his son and not as a servant and planned a celebration.

The older son meanwhile was out working, and when he came in, he was puzzled as to the reason for the party. When a servant told him his brother had returned, and they were celebrating he became angry and would not go inside. His father came out to him, trying to get him to come in and welcome his brother back, but the older refused. The story ends by the father reminding the older son of his love for both of them.

I’ve been the lost son before. I’ve left my Father because I was not satisfied. I look back on the pleasures I sought and I shake my head and ask "Why did I waste what I had on that?”

But at the same time that I’ve been the lost son, I’ve also been the older son. Working for the Father, I take little joy in doing what He asks of me. And even though I am receiving an inheritance from Him, that isn’t enough to make me happy. I become jealous and claim that the Father is withholding good things from me.

It is the younger son who we know of as the lost son who is humble enough to return to his Father, to admit his foolishness. And like the Shepherd who rejoiced more over the 1 lost sheep that was found compared to the 99 that didn’t go astray, the father in the story rejoices more over his younger son returning. But to both the father shows love. Equal love, not by our standards but by God’s who I believe is in fact the Father in this story.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Update, and needing feeback

I heard this week from a student I baptized at camp last summer. Its been great to finally be able to encourage him in his faith, and to continue to invest into his life.

I have an unusual schedule right now, that sees me eating lunch at 3pm now. Times with God also come and go, sometimes early in the morning. Sometimes late at night. I just finished doing laundry (12:30am) and turned the laundromat into a sanctuary where I began to sing and praise God while reading Psalm 97, slowly and purposefully.

I'm still mulling over thoughts from a recent retreat. Expect those up over the weekend.

But I need some feedback. While I feel like I'm investing well into the lives of people on campus, I'm out of the loop with my friends. I'm completely missing big updates on people's lives, and its not a one time occurrence. I'm wondering if I have tried to make too many close friends only to know many marginally. I can't just spend more time hanging with people, because what free time I have is devoted to studies, God, and personal items like keeping a clean bedroom (which I am marginally succeeding at).

I'm not sure what to do about this, but if anyone has some thoughts feel free to share.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Who am I?

This past week, I've given a lot of thought to my beliefs about God, and how they've changed over the past 4 years. I grew up in an Original Free Will Baptist Church. We're the smaller of the two Free Will Baptist Denominational groups in the U.S. (If you care about such things). My church at home is steeped in doing things traditionally, from the message, to the style of the service. Now we mix it up form time to time, but I say all that to give an insight into my background.

I consider myself above all else a Christian. There are times where I want to classify myself differently because of the bad image, Christians have given the world over recent history, but I stick with the name, to hopefully restore who God meant for us to be. A transformed living being in who the fullness of Christ is dwelling. I haven't attained that yet, but I know that is the ultimate goal, the end result, what a mature Christian looks like. Check out Stephen in Acts 6-8 sometime and see for yourself. It gives me chills.

I used to focus on keeping rules, and my faith was largely what others had told me to believe. That was a me who focused so much on staying within the boundary of Christianity like one might try to stay in bounds on the football field. I focused so much on being in bounds that there was no passion, no enjoyment.

Then I discovered a God who cares more about giving life, and about a relationship, than someone who rewards heaven to those who follow all his rules. I believe God speaks to me in subtle ways, and that He has a real power at work.

Now I am passionate, now I have inexpressible joy, now I have purpose to get up in the mornings, and leave my cuddly cocoon.

And now, I can begin love God, and his creation, because now, I am experiencing His love.

P.S. I'm getting to know the creative persona of God. That creator who has stopped me countless times in my tracks to observe a bit of nature, or a piece of art in its various forms.