The miracle of a body

The trainer I followed today really emphasized her “why” and encouraged everyone to do the same.
Her why was because she can. There are so many people that cant move their bodies and work out so her motivation is because she has the ability to do so. She then thanked her body for allowing her to work out.

Broke my heart.

Thanking a creation instead of the Creator.

That made me think of how special our bodies are though. God created all things. But He didnt give a tree a soul. He didnt give a flower a heart beat. He didnt give animals the desire to know Him.

But our human bodies are full of those things. A soul, a heart, a desire for Him.

So many times we look at our bodies and pick apart every flaw. Would we do that to a tree? A flower? A precious kitten?

We are way more apt to thank God for a beautiful sunset He created and less likely to thank Him for this body He created.

Maybe we feel convicted for how little we have cared for our bodies. How little attention we have paid in keeping them healthy. How much we have chosen to please fleshly lusts over taking care of a vessel that God thought enough of to install a soul, a heart, and a desire for Him. The ONLY creation He decided to do that to.

Lets not let that turn into condemnation. Let grace take care of that and lets get about our Father’s business.

Lets see our bodies as special as He does and take care of these vessels that house His most precious Spirit.

That is our why. A why that glorifies Him and shows Him gratefulness and reverence.

Lets be sure and thank Him today. Truly thank Him that we can participate in taking care of the miracle that is our bodies. Let what our bodies are to Him be our focus more than what we would rather our bodies look like.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 – “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

To seek like your faith depends on it

For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of Him who sent me. John 6:38

Jesus spoke these words after He fed the 5000 with nothing but five barley loaves and two small fish. Jesus had just preached to them about who He was and why He was there. Many already knew the prophecies of a coming Messiah. There He was, right in front of their eyes. Some conspired to grab Him and force Him to be their king and solve all of their political and social problems. Jesus, knowing their thoughts, left to be alone in the mountain. There is a story in between about Jesus walking on water, but that is not the point of this post.

The people came to seek Jesus after they realized He had left. Isnt that wonderful? Seek and ye shall find, right? Jesus wants us to seek after Him and that is what they did.

Well, yes, they did, but for the wrong reason. They did find Jesus, but all they could see was a human capable of great powers and strong teachings. Their hearts were not open to who He actually is and what He was actually offering. F. F. Bruce said it perfectly; “What they wanted, He would not give; what He offered, they would not receive.”

In verse 38 He tells them that He is not here to do His own will but the will of HIM that sent Him. Kinda confusing, huh? Isnt Jesus God in the flesh? So, why is He saying that He is not here to do His own will? Wouldnt His (God the Son) will be the same as HIS (God the Father) will? Yes, of course it is. But since all the people were willing to see was His human form then He was telling them that He is not like other humans with some human agenda. He is not here to make Himself look good or to please everyone in order to be applauded by all. He isnt here to solve all the social and political problems of human nature. He is here for so much more.

The people came to seek Him because they saw a man able to feed 5000 people with 5 barley loaves and 2 fish. He fed them til they could eat no more and still had food left over. I can imagine instead of them running to tell people “The Messiah is here!! Come find Him with us and follow Him and be saved!” They were running to tell people “There is this man with great powers so magical that he fed us all til we were stuffed! Come find him with us so when we are hungry again he will feed us!”

Ok, so doesnt the bible say God will always provide our needs? Then what is wrong with them seeking Him for that?

Well, the problem is, if that is the only reason they are seeking Him then it is simply not enough to grow their faith. If their love for Him is simply based on what He can do for their human needs and not based in who He is and why He came to the world then they will be like the seed that gets trampled on, ate up, withered, and choked by life’s circumstances. (Luke 8:5-8)They will never take root in true faith and reap the harvest of that faith.

As soon as their needs are not met on their time table or in the way they think their needs should be met then that shallow love they have for Jesus will quickly turn to anger and hate. But a faith rooted in who He is will be a faith that can withstand the waiting. That can withstand the suffering and struggles. That will be able to see the joy set before them. That will not need Jesus to perform miracle after miracle to prove He really is who He says He is.

A faith rooted in who Jesus really is will be a faith that trusts His will over all. It is a faith that trusts Him when He says “I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

A faith rooted in why Jesus came to the world will be rooted in eternity. It will be able to see past this world and into heavenly places. It will be rooted in gratefulness no matter the struggles of this temporary world. “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
2 Corinthians 4:17-18

What is the will of the Father?
“And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:40

Seek Jesus like your faith depends on it. Because it does.

“Still other seed fell on good soil. It came up and yielded a crop, a hundred times more than was sown.”
When he said this, he called out, “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.” Luke 8:8

Gentle yet powerful

John 6:44
No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up at the last day.

Anyone who has come to Christ didnt do so because it just seemed like a good idea one day. No. We came because we were drawn by the Father.

So, does the Father pick and choose who He draws? No. According to 2 Peter 3:9, He desires for no one to perish but for all to come and have everlasting life. At some point(s) in our lives we all feel the draw to come to Christ.

What really grabs me in this verse is the word “draw”. Marcus Dods describes this draw as a “gentle but powerful moral attraction.” This also reminds me of Matthew 11:28-30 that says “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Why is His yoke easy and burden light? Think about this: Oxen are yoked together with their master behind them cracking the whip. They are expected to drag a heavy load behind them with only their brute strength. Time and time again in the bible Jesus shows that He has “gone before us” and that we are “drawn to Him”. Therefore, His yoke is easy and burden is light because He stands before us instead of behind us, gently yet powerfully drawing our yoke while offering His strength to lighten the burden.

Are you feeling the draw to Jesus but pushing it away? Lean in to His gentle drawing just a bit and you will find how powerful it really is. Allow it to draw you to our Savior that creates an eternal relationship that will start this very day!

Lean into His gentleness and let His power draw you home.

Fear vs. Fear

Fear of the LORD means the highest respect and reverence for Him. This type of fear the bible speaks of is not a trembling in the corner waiting to be punished and condemned type of fear.

This type of fear brings us to the Lord for a solution of sin in our salvation. The other type of fear is what the enemy wants you to have so you never choose salvation. Which ultimately will lead to trembling in fear of hell and losing the presence of God because He was never chosen by you although you were given chance after chance

When you have a healthy fear of the LORD then you want to know more, see more, understand more….therefore you start to gain knowledge that turns to wisdom. But the ones that despise such wisdom turn from it and start living their own internal hell before they even reach their eternal hell.

That does sound pretty foolish to me.

Call me a fool if you like. Tell me I am the one in the wrong. But deep down you know that isnt true. Deep down something is saying….listen. Something is telling you this is all true. That is why you feel anger when you hear these words. That is why normally you scroll past or turn off anything that has to do with God. But not this time. You may be scowling and rejecting but you are still here.

The bottom line is someday you will know for sure that this is truth and you believed a lie. I am not even going to try to put a fear in your heart of a fire filled hell with flames lapping at your flesh. No. I want you to know how alone you will be without the presence of God. You think you dont live in His presence now? You think He has totally forsaken you already? No sir, No maam. He is still very present in your life. Full of love, grace and forgiveness. While you are on this side of death He is with you. Otherwise what would you be rebelling against? If He wasnt trying to constantly show you truth then what are you fighting to reject?

Romans 5:8
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Maybe you have lived rejecting so long that you cant even come close to understanding the love in that verse. Maybe you look at that verse in Romans and see hate instead. I can pour truth in you all day long about God’s design, about Jesus’ joy set before Him that brought Him through the cross, and about His great and glorious love for you. Yes, you!! But will you hear me? He is calling to your heart. Will you hear Him?

Lord, I pray they see You. I know You are there. They know it, too. I thank You Lord for being there. I thank You for choosing them. I know You only long for them to choose you. Lord, break their hearts for what breaks Yours. Help them see Lord. Til their very last breath, I know You are there. Thank You Lord. In Christ name I pray, Amen

Jesus prayed for you

Would you like to hear a prayer that Jesus prayed over you? Go read John 17. Or even download the bible app, choose for the app to read it to you, close your eyes, and picture Him in prayer over you.

Take comfort in what Jesus desires for you. He desired it so much that while He was on this earth He prayed it over you just before He was arrested and took the wrath directed towards sin for you.

Take comfort in Jesus as your Savior. A relationship with Him that leads you to spending eternity with Him is His greatest desire. A relationship that brings about obedience, trust, and fulfilled pomises He has spoken over the ones that love Him.

Do you feel like your life hasnt been showing your love for Him? Make that first step today and tell Him you want to be different. Ask Him into your heart so all of His promises can be made complete in you. Come into agreement that you are a sinner in need of a Savior and ask for your heart to be directed towards Him instead of your sin. A year from now you will be amazed at how different you have become all thanks to Jesus calling to your heart and you welcoming Him in.

Dont worry about being enough for Him. That isnt the point. He is enough for you. That is the point.

Let Jesus talk to your heart today. He is exactly what you have been missing.

Grace like Joseph

As I was studying over the lesson we will be talking about in Sunday school, I was just thinking about the story of Joseph and Mary. They were engaged to be married when Mary became pregnant with Jesus. Engagements back then were different than they are now. An engagement then could last a year and were meant to be a show of purity to each other and to God. The couple was basically married without living together or consumating the marriage yet. So, it was more of a commitment than just having a ring you can return if you change your mind.

During this engagement, Mary comes to Joseph and tells him she was visited by an angel, impregnated by the Holy Spirit, and would be giving birth to the Messiah.

I am sure you can imagine the shock for both but especially Joseph. He had not been visited by an angel and had all of these things explained. He is hearing it from his soon to be wife. The wife that was supposed to be behaving with purity and fully commited to him. Of course his first thoughts are going to lean to her cheating on him.

But even still, he didnt blast her out. He chose to secretly divorce her and just move on with his life. Was he hurt? Oh, without a doubt, I am sure that man’s heart ached. What love he had for Mary that even though he thought she was unfaithful he couldnt stand the thought of her being humiliated. He couldnt stand the thought of her whole community coming against her. Stoning was fit punishment for adultry at that time. That is how serious it was regarded, but for Joseph, he was willing to just cut the ties and deal with his pain in secret.

An angel did come afterward and tell him that all Mary said was true and he should marry her. Which, of course, he did. But before he knew that he still treated Mary with such mercy and grace. I can see why God chose him to raise His son and be a part of the most important event of all of man kind.

It makes me think about what we tend to do when we are hurt. It can be a huge hurt like being cheated on or many times just something that slightly inconveniences us or hurts our feelings. Take a scroll through facebook and I can bet you will find a newsfeed full of posts calling people out, calling businesses out, or blasting life in general. Go stand with a group of people for a few minutes and you are likely to hear how onry, wrong, or foolish someone else is.

I am not pointing fingers here. Just yesterday morning I was brought to tears on my drive to work when God let me feel the pain of my sin of letting my mouth run away more and more and allowing bitter roots to form.

None of us are perfect. But that is the whole point. None of us are perfect yet we all receive the same grace from our loving Father. Let us remember that the next time we feel we have become the victim to something or someone.

Hurt is real. Pain is real. Anger is real. Justice is God’s.

May we remember to keep our words small and hushed until God deals with our emotions. God will deal with making things right.

Isaiah 30:18 – “Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!”

The sin struggle

Struggling with sin and lounging in sin are two different things.

When you accept Jesus as your savior then His Spirit comes to reside in you which causes a struggle between the Spirit and your flesh over sin in your life. The Spirit begins a work in you that changes your heart and your flesh fights against that. Rest assured, the Spirit wins in the end but you do feel the struggle.

If you are proclaiming that you believe in Jesus and that He died on the cross so you are forgiven and saved, yet you are still sitting pretty in your sin with no worries over it then you may want to reevaluate your relationship with Christ.

I dont speak this in judgement or in anyway trying to declare whether you are saved or not, but I was once one that claimed a salvation I dont believe I truly had. You see, there is a big difference in knowing who Jesus is and what He did and in actually believing IN Him and following Him. Even the demons know who He is and what He did. Knowledge is nothing without wisdom.

I truly love you all. Therefore, I want you all to hear the truth and know Jesus. He is everything. You are His everything. Know the truth so it can set you free!

Matthew 7:21
Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

Romans 12:2
Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Romans 8:9
However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.

Ezekiel 36:27
I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

His treasure

Matthew 6:21
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Do you know what God proclaims as His treasure?

1 Peter 2:9-10
“But you are God’s chosen treasure…”

We are His treasure! He chose us to come to this earth. His desire is for us to choose Him to be our treasure, too!

Why? Let’s read on in 1 Peter 2:9-10

“He called you out of darkness to experience his marvelous light, and now he claims you as his very own. He did this so that you would broadcast his glorious wonders throughout the world.”

Why should we broadcast how wonderful He is?

“For at one time you were not God’s people, but now you are. At one time you knew nothing of God’s mercy, because you hadn’t received it yet, but now you are drenched with it!”

God shows mercy over His treasure because His heart resides with us. The creator of the universe considers us His treasure and His whole heart is for us. Why would we not treasure Him the same? Why would our hearts not reside with Him and be all in for Him? Why would we not broadcast this good news to all we can so they can be drenched with His mercy, too?

Is there something you treasure more than God? Is there something taking your time away from Him? Is there something you broadcast more than the glories of God? While we are made to enjoy each other and all His creation, we were not made to worship anyone or anything except the Creator.

Make sure God is your treasure today. You sure sparkle bright in His eyes. That pull you feel…that is Him trying to pull His treasure close to His heart.

Fall into His embrace. Let Him treasure you. No thing and no person will ever be able to treasure you the way your Creator does.

Have you been hit hard by life and feel like there is no way God considers you His treasure? Let’s talk about that. I am hear to listen. And, as always, talk to Him about it. He is here to listen, too. He walks us through everything, even if that “thing” is your anger and doubt over Him.

Choosing your leader

People can only go as far as their leader. The leaders of this world will someday die. Even sin has its end. But Jesus has gone all the way. He is eternal. His love and glory are eternal.

How far do you want to go?

Choose your leader carefully. One way will lead you to destruction and punishment of sin. The Other Way will lead you to salvation and forgiveness of sin.

Choose the eternal love that surpasses all understanding. Choose real love. Not what comes to decieve and destroy. But choose what makes you able to escape from the snares of sin that try to entangle you.

He is waiting for you to make your choice. What are you waiting on? I would love to be here to help work through those things that are holding you back. If not me, then find a trusted Christian friend. You know, that one person God has put in your life that you have been avoiding because just their presence leaves you questioning your ways with a heavy feeling in your chest? Yeah, that person. Go talk to them.

Most importantly….pray. Talk to Him. He is always listening. The closer you get to Him, the better you can hear Him. He can take away that heavy feeling in your chest.

John 10:10
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

Psalm 124:7
We have escaped like a bird from the fowler’s snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped.