Thursday, January 14, 2016

Christ Committed

What does it mean to be Christ Committed?  

Take a minute to think about that before you continue.  

What does it mean to you to be committed to Christ?

We can find this answer in the Bible.  Matthew 19:21Jesus said to him, “If you wish to be [a]complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

When put in that light are any of us committed?  There are a few, I'm sure.

Is this a true "definition" of being committed to Christ.  Was this an example throughout Scripture?

Were the Apostles committed?  

According to Acts 2:44-46 they were sold out for Jesus in this exact manner.

We're given the example of the widow in Mark 12:42-46 giving so much less than everyone else, but she gave everything she had.

How about the little boy with the fish and loaves in John 6?  He gave all the food he had to help Jesus' cause.

But is this an accurate definition of being Christ committed?  If we take things from Scripture absolutely literal it is, but then...

Matthew 5:30 says "And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell."

If we take everything we read in the Bible in a literal sense, there's not one of us that would have right hands, is there?

I believe the real reason behind the passage in Matt 19:21 is getting us to do a heart-check.  God is always challenging us to check our hearts and it's condition.  Romans 12:3 tells us to be honest in our estimate of ourselves because apart from Christ we're nothing; eternally speaking.  We have to evaluate ourselves according to God's standard - evaluating ourselves according to the standards of the world and those around us can cause us to think too highly of ourselves.

So... the meaning behind that "definition"; Matthew 19:21.

The young rich man needed to be rebuked.  

He needed for his inadequacies to be highlighted.

His covetousness defied the Spirit of the 10th commandment (do not covet).
His lack of desire to help the poor defied the second of the greatest commandments (to love his neighbor).
His love to stuff surpassed his love for God which defied the 2nd commandment (do not make idols)

See... God wants us want us to desire less of the "stuff" that is meaningless for His Kingdom and more of the right stuff for the right reasons (Kingdom "stuff"). He doesn't necessarily mean we can't have stuff -- He just doesn't want that stuff to have us.  For where our treasure lies, there are heart is too.

Think about the things you ARE committed to.  It might be health, nutrition, staying debt-free, modesty, home schooling, public school, Toyota, butcher block counter tops... whatever it might be.  You're committed.  You won't do it any other way.  You're absolved in that decision.  

Why?  Why are you not willing to be swayed?

Isn't it because you believe in it?  You believe in that particular cause?

The same is true for Jesus.  He was/is completely and totally committed to his Father's business - Luke 2:49 tells us that.

Understand this:
Jesus -- fully God.  Came to earth as man, born in a stable, slept in a feeding trough.  But not just any man, a servant.  And not just any servant, but a servant to death.  And beyond that - death of a servant put to death on a cross made for the worst of the worst.  The lowest means of death.

But He was so fully committed that He emptied himself of everything for me.  For you.  For everyone.  For the sin of humanity.

So how CAN you be committed to Christ in the same way as Christ is committed to you?

Run the race God has given you (not someone else's race).  And do it for the glory of God; being a first rate you, not a second rate someone else.

What race has He set before you?  It all starts at inception

male :: female 
husband :: wife
brother :: sister
father :: mother
daughter :: son
employee :: employer

Each and every one of us wears multiple hats at the same time.  And each hat we wear requires a different approach to ministry.  

How then, are you showing the world, today, that you are Christ committed?

Monday, January 11, 2016

Snippets From Syd: Hand Motions

Our second service happened yesterday - January 10, 2016.

Our entire family is involved in the calling of Church On the Way; we all have unique giftings and are using them as needed within this minstry.  I, for one, am doing the children's story & music time.  The new ideas of "children's church" is something we don't have for this congregation, instead we believe, whole heartedly, in parenting in the pews.

Anyhow... this Sunday we talked about prayer through the little boy Samuel - how his mother prayed for him and God answered her prayer.  We then sang a song called "Standing In the Need of Prayer"...

All this to say -

On the way home, our youngest daughter, Sydney and I had a very short, but sweet conversation regarding children's music at church...

Sydney:  "You know, Mom...  I remember learning new songs when I was little and it was so much easier and more fun when there were hand motions to go with it.  If it were me teaching - I would create hand motions to go with the songs."

Me:  "That is a fantastic idea, Sydney!!!!  What song will you be teaching them next Sunday?"

Don't you just love how God places the call in the hearts of His children (GodWink).

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Trusting God

Do you?   Trust God?   Really?
I've heard it said - "...if He's not Lord of all, He's not Lord at all..."
I think this is very accurate.  How often I've given God control over part A of my life, but part B is still mine to control.  Or I give control over, only to take it back because I think I can do it better.

We've been trusting God for many things throughout the past several years.  One thing that's been very difficult is trusting Him to provide the ministry that we can't even imagine happening.  My husband finished bible college over five years ago.  We thought for sure he would be a pastor by now.  It was very humbling when his dream was "reduced" to being a Sunday School teacher.  But where God closes one door, you can be assured He's faithful in opening another door - an even better door.

God had a plan in this too.  He always does.  He always has.

This past Sunday was [officially] our first service in the above little church; Church on the Way.  Old and very nostalgic, but let me tell you - this little building was brimming and flowing with the Spririt.  This was a vision God had placed in Daniel's heart years ago coming to fruition.  I am so very proud to support this man of God, that I am blessed to call my husband.  Our prayer now is simply this:  fill this building, Lord - with those you have in mind.

What are you trusting God for today?  
Is there something that you've been trusting God for that just hasn't happened yet?

No worries if He hasn't... His plans are not always our plans, but He does have a plan!

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