Sunday, May 31, 2020
Foundations - Justice
Friday, May 29, 2020
Wednesday, May 27, 2020
Tuesday, May 26, 2020
Keep your eyes on Jesus, stay grateful, and be blessed this week!
Sunday, May 24, 2020
I'm a fixer. If there's a problem, I don't like to just wait for someone else to fix it or try to put up with it. I wan to do something about it! The problem is, sometimes the solutions we are able to provide just won't fit well with the problems we have. The question is then: are we thinking about the problem the right way?
We see all around people that are down on their luck, hurting, or in poverty. Sometimes, we would rather blame them for their situation than help. Sometimes we feel like the help we can offer won't make a difference. Sometimes we let these discouraging thoughts stop us from fulfilling our purpose.
Perhaps, we can change the question. What if we begin to see people in poverty as a real people in need of compassion? What if recognize that in poverty, we have an ongoing opportunity to bless and to be blessed through showing compassion.
Yes, we want badly to help pull people out of poverty. Yes, we want people to be paid fairly and treated fairly. But if the solution to poverty is simply hard work and dedication then it becomes a moral judgement we pass on those in poverty that they are not good enough, not worthy, not loved.
What if instead we realize we have people right in front of us that need love and compassion. They need Jesus and the Kingdom. We fool ourselves if we think we can help one person or a few over our lifetime and the problem of poverty will go away. No, Jesus says: "The poor will always be with you, so what does that mean but that the work of the church continues!
The work of compassion will never end. The mission is fulfilled in doing the work. When we focus on the task at hand, rather than blaming people for their mistakes, we can finally fulfill our purpose and calling as a people of love and compassion.
Thursday, May 21, 2020
Wednesday, May 20, 2020
Tuesday, May 19, 2020
Faith in Action
Monday, May 18, 2020
Romans 4 & 5 -- Peace
Sunday, May 17, 2020
Foundations - Building Intentionally
Friday, May 15, 2020
To Know God, and To Be Known By Him
Do we have in our mind a God that only cares about rules and doesn't care about you? Some people thought that the rules were more important than the people the rules applied to. But Jesus illustrates the point perfectly in Matthew 12:11-12.
Jesus describes a situation where there are two competing goals. Often in life we can face a similar conundrum. We want to be meeting together, worshiping together, singing and speaking to one another but at the same time the more we are around one another the more risk we are asking others to accept. We want to be a loving and caring people that place others' needs before our own. We want to follow God's will and His commands and the teaching of the Bible. But somehow, these two goals seem to clash with one another.
Jesus tell us in Matthew 12:11-12 that if we are faced with a choice of letting only a mere sheep lose its life in favor of us keeping a commandment, he would rather the sheep live. He goes on to ask, "How much more valuable is a person than a sheep?" A lot!
Therefore, if we have a God in our mind that has a greater desire for us to comply with the rule-keeping of meeting together even in the face of the potential loss of life -- I would ask is that really the God as He has revealed Himself to us in His word and His Son?
1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
1 John 3:16 This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.
Psalm 23:3 He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Colossians 1:17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
2 Timothy 4:18 The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Ephesians 6:16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;
God knows you, chose you, loves you, restores you, sustains you, helps you, rescues you, and shields you from the evil one. Jesus tells the people of his day plainly, "it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath" (Matthew 12:12). Remember, this was at a time when everyone in the audience would have let a sheep die to avoid breaking the Sabbath law.
Jesus challenges them and challenges us: is the image of God we bear in our hearts and to others, true?
Thursday, May 14, 2020
Stay the Course
Is Jesus leading you?
Tuesday, May 12, 2020
Sunday, May 10, 2020
Foundations - Love
I believe the Bible tells us we are loved and we can know we are saved. There is "more to the story" going on in the exchange Jesus uses to warns us about judgement.
Thursday, May 7, 2020
I don't know about you, but I feel like week has been a long month. Yes, I had to think about that before I typed it. Change is hard. Change is stressful. Change is uncomfortable. But do you know another word for change? Growth.
When God uses me, when I pray and study and serve, I grow. I get the blessings of growing in my faith, closer to my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, and close to the people we get to serve. When God uses me, I find that my wants and desires changes.
How I choose to spend my time or express myself changes. Growing means life changes. Change isn't always bad, like not changing can sometimes be.
As we go through life, life will change us. We have a chance to decide how.
Praying for you all!