Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 12/04/2011

As we are now in December, it is a perfect time to share the gospel message (any time is good, but being the month we celebrate the birth of Christ makes seem a little extra special, you know?). If you are not friends with me on Facebook, you may not have seen this one as of yet. Last year on Thanksgiving, I awoke, got into the shower, and then this poem sprang into my mind. I wrote it down, and typed it up. Today you can enjoy it!

How much does He love us?

How much does He love us?
Living in eternity;
Living in perfect unity;
Demonstrating community
In the Holy Trinity.

But He said it is not enough
And so He created stuff
All for His ultimate creation: us;
But we just had to mess it up.

How much does He love us?
Adam and Eve lost the Garden
And now we are born with original sin.
God knew our relationship with Him
To restore we could not even begin.

God looked on us down on Earth,
Seeing us in our moral dearth.
For some reason He saw some worth,
So He came to us through childbirth!

How much does He love us?
Jesus Christ gave up royalty
To live amongst our depravity.
Jesus in all of His divinity
Entered the world as a tiny baby!

He grew up living a sinless life
Until by John He was baptized.
Religious leaders He did chastise
While helping people to realize.

How much does He love us?
After a few years of ministry,
He went to God’s holy city.
In our backward objectivity
We nailed His sinless body to a tree.

He was aware of His Path,
That it included a painful death.
“It is finished” He said of forgiveness
As He took his final breath.

How much does He love us?
Through our Lord’s sacrifice
We can receive new spiritual life.
Our redemption came at a great price,
But we are washed in the blood of Jesus Christ!

Choose to believe in His grace
So that we may see Him face to face;
So that we may join Him in the eternal place
As His holy and redeemed chosen race.

Misplaced Thankfulness

This is a period of the year when happy stories gain prominence in the public sphere. This past week was Thanksgiving, that time when we express our thankfulness for what we have.

Unfortunately, there are still stories abounding that are less than happy (downright sad most of the time). On Wednesday night (11/23), I read a news story that was less than happy. If you do not have time to read through the article, here is a brief synopsis:

A South Korean couple wanted a baby, and they gave birth to a girl a few months ago. She was born prematurely, and they did not have jobs. This led them to feel inadequate for the job of raising a child, therefore they would spend many hours a day at internet cafes playing a game called “Prius Online” (a lot like The Sims and Second Life, if you know what that is). In this game, they began to raise a virtual baby named Anima. They would go home every so often to feed their real baby powdered milk (I am assuming they added water so that it was not just powder). This past September they came home from a 12-hour session of their game to find their daughter had died from malnourishment. The father said, “I am sorry for what I did and hope that my daughter does not suffer any more in heaven.”

Here is my take on this situation: the parents had a misplaced thankfulness.

We see this kind of thing all the time. People have something great or even perfect for them in their possession, yet all they think about are the things they can get. They are not focused on what they do not have, just what they can get. We know this is the case with these people, because they do not complain about not having something. In fact, this kind of people brag about what they do have and want to have (and plan on getting).

In the case of this child’s death, we can see that the parents wanted a child. We can see that they wanted to care for a child. Their problem was that they were not able to cope with their situation. While they wanted a child, to care for a child, they felt they were inadequate given their circumstances. Therefore, they shifted their thinking from being focused on their real child to being focused on their virtual baby. They misplaced their thankfulness.

  • It is just like the man who works 80 hours per week to provide for his family.
  • It is just like the child at school who bullies others because he does not know how to show affection.
  • It is just like the woman who gives gifts she can not afford to find acceptance.
  • It is just like the church who focuses on programs instead of people while trying to be hip and inviting.
  • It is just like the Christian who avoids “sinners” because of the desire for purity.

In all of these scenarios, people substitute something in place of real relationships. They want people around and to have things “perfect,” but they do not connect with others (at least not in a way that is good).

There is really only one answer for all people: Jesus Christ.

As I posted last week, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” (Colossians 3:15-16)

Also, read Hebrews 12 and 13 … and the rest of the Bible!

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 11/27/2011

My Thanksgiving Day post was about why I am thankful, so today’s poem is a reminder of that.

 

 

here is why
daniel m  klem

why were there screams
and all of the cries
that the Son of Man
should be crucified
the senseless violence that
could have been stayed
was acted through
on that horrible day

why did God allow it
if His Son had to die
it happened so you
could keep your life
Christ died to set
our souls completely free
and wash sin from everyone
including you and me

 

Taken from simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m  klem, page 116.

Why I Am Thankful

I am thankful when I have had a long day at work putting children in time out, reprimanding and coercing them for not and into doing their work, and as they are leaving having them hug me and laugh. Each child’s laughter is the voice of God saying “I love you and am proud of you.”

I am thankful when I can ride to work in the morning with the radio on and sing along with songs praising God. I can almost hear the angels singing along, as well.

I am thankful when I go to church and talk and sing with my family in Christ. I get a little taste of eternity with our Father.

I am thankful when I can wake up every morning next to my best friend. Seeing that face as the first thing reminds me that God wants to give me the desires of my heart, even after I have disobeyed. This moment is a reminder that His grace is amazing and His love limitless.

I am thankful when I look at my life and realize my God saved me by His grace through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

I am thankful, because God is I Am.

Thanksgiving 2011 Message

Here is a good message for you for Thanksgiving:

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is yourlife, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should. Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.

Colossians 3:1-17, 4:2-6

Remember Who deserves all of our thanks this week. Remember to honor Him by sharing your love and thanks with your friends and family … All of them!

Love, peace, and grace in our Lord Jesus Christ.

Daniel

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 11/20/2011

We have not stayed in the same place with our roommates of a year and a half for longer than a couple of hours at a time since Tuesday. After a year and a half of sharing a small amount of space with people, that feels weird. We might get used to it, but it still feels weird. The good news is that we are pretty much all moved … into our separate apartments across town from each other (it is just the way it worked out, honest!). In any event, missing each other is the inspiration for posting today’s poem. I have a hope you will enjoy!

AND HAPPY THANKSGIVING! Remember Who to thank for all of your blessings (and trials)!

too long away
daniel m  klem

i spent too much time
trying to please my friends
but that will not help
when my life ends
i would act a certain way
even when i knew
doing so at all
is not for You
but now i am back
and i know how to live
i will live the life
with my life to give
and Your Will will show
in everything done
and all will know
i live for the Son

Taken from simple words for God from a simple man of God by daniel m  klem, page 89.

Moving things

Like literally. There is a short break happening with this blog, because my wife and I are moving.

Your homework, then, is to think of an analogy which describes the nature of the Trinity. ALWAYS FUN TIMES!

God bless you until we converse again!