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Archive for June, 2013

Did you just say that walking with Jesus is hard?

The Duke was on the right track, but suffice it to saythat’s foolishness.stupid

Do you want to know what’s hard? Walking in the flesh is hard. The truth of the matter is that whenever I conclude my Christian walk is difficult, or challenging, or wearisome, that’s not my thinking — it’s the Holy Spirit reminding me that I’ve crawled back into my old skin. I believe my Father reminds me of this because I routinely ask Him to…

Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties; And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139: 23-24

Remember this, Christian: a life lived one hundred percent in the Spirit is the easiest thing we can do this side of Heaven. If somebody tells you otherwise, don’t listen. Don’t listen because they’re either struggling in their flesh and they don’t perceive it or they’re struggling in a sin and trying to justify it. There may be other reasons, but these two seem to be the most significant.

Do I walk 100% in the Spirit?

Not quite yet, but that’s not the point. The truth be told, even as I am writing this, I am walking just a tad in my flesh — I’m the one who needed this counsel this morning, but the meat on this bone is so satisfying, I just had to share it. Recognize that one hundred percent is the ideal. No one has achieved it, but we should try to surround ourselves with those believers who seek it. Do not put yourself under the yoke of those who complain or suggest the Christian walk is hard. That sort of negativity reveals that they are distracted from the goal and to some varying degree, focused on themselves.

Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints. Jude 1:3

Ask yourself this simple question, “Is Jesus a liar?”

Obviously, He is not. So what was Jesus trying to convey when He said…

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

If Jesus said His yoke (that is to say, ‘His way;’ His teaching) is easy, that is exactly what He meant. Jesus qualifies His own remark by adding that with every yoke there comes a burden, but His burden is light.  James told us to be ‘doers‘ of the Word, not just hearers, with the understanding that the ‘doing’ is the light burden Jesus spoke of. The teachings of Jesus, and the application of the word that must follow, is the most rewarding, most manageable, mild, and pleasant thing a person can do (unless of course you’re doing it in your own flesh).

If you think it’s hard, compare His method to the ways of the world. You know, the ways that lead to everlasting death.

Meditate on this passage:

But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors–not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs–heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. Romans 8:11-18

Suffering?

What about it? You do realize that with Christ or without Him, a person will still experience suffering. whineI am here to tell you that any suffering you encounter with Jesus will be far easier than any you undergo without Him. God promises to be with us through every trial. Nobody of this world can make such a claim. So stop whining and start walking in the manner in which He has prescribed for you. And if you should face a situation where you errantly think your Christian walk is hard, rejoice, don’t lament. God is merely revealing to you that you’re entertaining your flesh. Acknowledge and obey the Lord and then share it with someone. Confession is good for the soul!

Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain. Philippians 2:14-16

Christians who embrace hardship are essentially putting off Christ and quenching the work of the Holy Spirit. Nobody who has removed filthy clothes would put them on again, when clean ones have been made readily available. You might even agree that doing so would be stupid, and as the Duke has already pointed out, stupid is hard.

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Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. Galatians 6:7

An Open Letter to President Obama

Dear President Obama,

After the attack on our American consulate in Benghazi, whereby four Americans were killed, including changeU.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, and ten others were injured, you erroneously blamed the attack on a poorly produced, anti-Muslim video. At a reported cost of $70,000.00 to American taxpayers, you authorized and starred in a television advertisement, to be aired overseas, to denounce the film. In this government sanctioned ad, you shared how you reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. Hillary Clinton added that America rejects the anti-religious content and message of the video.

We have since learned that the anti-Muslim video was not the cause of this murderous, terrorist attack. But be that as it may, you did get one thing right: there is no place for hate-filled, anti-religious rhetoric in America. So as a result, I have a question for you Mr. President…

Where’s the outrage of this effort to denigrate Christian religious beliefs?

Or this one…

These movies mock God, His Holy Word the Bible, Christians, and the Church of Jesus Christ. Seriously Mr. President, this is all okay with you? Is it not within your power to scrape together another $70,000.00 and make a commercial for Americans outlining how these types of movies are denigrating and hurtful? The fact remains that you could merely share your outrage (if you have any) at your next press conference or public appearance.

Would you at least do that? 

And just so we’re clear Mr. President, I am not suggesting you take away our First Amendment right to free speech (Heaven forbid), but rather you share with this nation what it means to be tolerant of all religions. Honestly Mr. President, the message you are sending is that you only care for the Muslim religion. Is it because American Christians are typically peace-loving and we don’t react to the mocking of our ‘God and faith‘ by burning buildings and killing people? Do you assume because American Christians are not radically destructive, that these videos are acceptable?

Mr. President, it’s time for you to step up to the plate and be a leader. America is a nation of many religions and it is shameful that you only respect the beliefs of a small portion of our citizens. Your lack of leadership, represented by you silence on the issue, is both troublesome and appalling.

Mr. President, we are eagerly waiting for a change.

“So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 7:12

Sincerely,

David Wells — Christ follower, and tolerant American

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 It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.  Proverbs 25:2

People throw out the best stuff. 

Vacation Bible School (VBS) season is upon us and for me that can only mean one thing: time to do kingdom rocksome serious garbage picking. Last year’s VBS theme was focused in and around Babylon, so my wife and I set out to recover ever-so-slightly used items that might represent that Chaldean dynasty look the church was going for. We recovered many lovely Persian-esque rugs, pillows, lamps, and vases to decorate the classrooms and craft tents.

This years theme is similar. It’s called Kingdom Rock, and although not Babylonian, were going to need much of the same type of items. At this point you might be wondering,

Why didn’t you just save the stuff you collected last year?”

There are a few reasons. First, where’s the fun in that? Do you know how much fun dumpster diving is? Second, at the end of the day most of the stuff is still junk and not worthy of holding onto (you get the picture). But then there is a third reason . Every once-and-awhile you find something like this…

DSCN1524

Can you believe someone actually threw this out? Solid, vintage oak, without a scratch worthy of mentioning! They discarded the hurricane lamp too! And it was buried in someone’s trash. Sadly, (wink, wink) this treasure isn’t going to make it to VBS.

I have found and redeemed it and it is mine!

“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” Matthew 13:45-46

This all kind of reminds me of how Jesus often operates. It is my testimony that the Messiah found me at the curb amongst the rubbish, brought me home, cleaned me up, and redeemed me — all at a great cost. Jesus took the time to seek me out and restore me to what He had always intended me to be and today, I am back with my rightful owner! He didn’t have to go garbage picking, He wanted to go. Our Lord takes great pleasure and delight in these finds. Fact is, the angels rejoice and celebrate with Him in Heaven when He brings home one of His treasures.

…When (Jesus) had found him, He said to him, “Do you believe in the Son of God?” He answered and said, “Who is He, Lord, that I may believe in Him?” And Jesus said to him, “You have both seen Him and it is He who is talking with you.” Then he said, “Lord, I believe!” And he worshiped Him. And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” John 9:35-39

The truth be told, I pulled a few other treasures from this curbside heap. I felt for sure that these people didn’t know what they were doing, so I knocked on the door and spoke with the lady of the house. I even offered to give her some money. This woman was so gracious, she simply told me that she was aware of its value, but she was quickly moving and it all had to go. She would not take my money, but assured me that she was grateful the items were going to a good home. Her grace reminded me of our Savior who taught us that we cannot repay Him [either] for the things He provided; priceless things that we do not merit.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:8-10 

If you do not know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, it is not a coincidence that you have read this far — Jesus has found you and led you here by His Holy Spirit. As kooky as it all may seem, it is true. The choice that you now have is to follow the One who found you. My recommendation would be to stop reading and pray right now, asking Jesus into your heart. Jesus went to the cross for all our sins and He is the only way to Heaven. Believe it (no one said you have to fully understand it) and pray right now.

If you prayed, let me know by leaving a comment. I’d like to connect with you.

Here’s a way to find a church near you: HERE

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Overcoming The Times

Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.

Whosoever Believeth in Him

Whosoever believeth in Him (Jesus Christ) should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Dedicated 2 Jesus Christ and Jesus said, Take Heed that No Man Deceive You

For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.

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