Posts Tagged ‘ Forgiveness ’

A Faith Old Enough To Vote

Today is my 18th Re-Birthday! [For more details, see hereherehereherehere, and here.
Yep. 18 years ago today I succumbed to Jesus’ bear hug of forgiveness and grace. My faith is now legally an adult in most of the world.

Do I feel accomplished?

Honestly, I will always know there is more to do until the day I no longer need to number my days (Psalm 90:12), for The Wisdom of God made flesh has been made fully known to His Creation.

Rather, I am beginning to feel the pressure of time. I was a teenager when entering the Christian fold, so I am only in my mid-30s. However, the Lord has been teaching me to number my days (ask those who know me best! There are stories!), so I can see “missed opportunities” and periods of disobedience in my past. I see faces of people I could have been “That person” to.

Yet, these should not be seen as regrets … at least of I truly believe my sovereign Lord truly is sovereign. Rather, these are moments to glean from and push forward. 

I think Paul put it best.

. . . and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.

Philippians 3:9‭-‬16, ESV

Therefore, I finish as I have in the past:

 . . . by quoting Jude (3):

Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.

Let us celebrate our common salvation and share this faith with our fallen world!

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 11/12/2017 – Psalm 139

I realized late that I forgot to click “Schedule” on this, so it is appearing a day late!

As we are in the midst of my pro-life themed-videos, I thought it fitting to share THE pro-life psalm in its entirety, with only minimal commentary.

Psalm 139  English Standard Version (ESV)

Search Me, O God, and Know My Heart

To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.

139 O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
    you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
    and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
    behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
    and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
    it is high; I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit?
    Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
    If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning
    and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there your hand shall lead me,
    and your right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
    and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to you;
    the night is bright as the day,
    for darkness is as light with you.

13 For you formed my inward parts;
    you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
    Wonderful are your works;
    my soul knows it very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
    intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
    in your book were written, every one of them,
    the days that were formed for me,
    when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
    How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
    I awake, and I am still with you.

19 Oh that you would slay the wicked, O God!
    O men of blood, depart from me!
20 They speak against you with malicious intent;
    your enemies take your name in vain.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord?
    And do I not loathe those who rise up against you?
22 I hate them with complete hatred;
    I count them my enemies.

23 Search me, O God, and know my heart!
    Try me and know my thoughts!
24 And see if there be any grievous way in me,
    and lead me in the way everlasting!

My only commentary today is for verses 23-24:

For any who is involved with a sin in which they struggle – and, for the main purpose of this week’s topic, especially those who have been involved with [an] abortion[s] – the best place to start is by asking God to search you.

“Please, God, look into my heart and my mind. You understand everything I am thinking and feeling! Help me! I know I messed up – that I am messed up! I know have done something horrible and wrong, and it is tearing me up! I can’t handle it!”

And He is faithful and true. He will judge your heart, yes, but if you trust that He is truly Lord and the source of salvation, He will “lead [you] in the way everlasting!”

God will forgive you and help you to move forward, if you trust in Him and His sacrifice and the mercy and grace that it afforded.

Trust in the risen Savior, Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ. The lover and forgiver of your soul.

Shooting at God?

Another shooting happened this week.

This time, it was in Sutherland Springs, TX, at the First Baptist Church.

Let us remember all of those affected and pray for peace, forgiveness, and strength to move forward.

It looks like it may have been a “domestic dispute” between the shooter and his in-laws.

It also appears he was a preacher of Atheism and the downfall of Christianity.

Regardless, and before I knew these tidbits, I could not help but think:

Is this the post-Christian America we have been promised for years?

Here are some of the reasons I ask:

  • The usual call for stricter controls on guns and people began immediately.
  • Groups like Antifa (Anti-Fascists) are calling for stricter laws across the board.
  • There have been calls for how this is Christians’ fault, anyway, and to see how obviously their prayers were not being answered so how could there be any god.

First, Atheist and other non-religious groups have been calling for all forms of religion to be abolished and for “true human freedom” to reign, but without solid examples of how one must live. Now people wonder why our society seems to be going down the toilet. We removed moral absolutes, and they wonder why we act more like animals. It seems that without the Christian God to help teach us how to be self-controlled (Galatians 5:22-23), we rely on outward control. (i.e. More and stricter laws.)

This leads to the second point. We see groups claiming to be anti-fascist that promote known fascist governments. We see the call for the breakdown of walls between cultures with new walls to be up (such as wanting to celebrate what is great about other cultures but not letting those outside of those cultures dress up as them for Halloween). Because we cannot trust people to self-regulate (control their emotions), society must help by saying what others are allowed to think and do.

Finally, Christians and our God get mocked and blamed when this kind of violence erupts. Am I complaining about this as other prominent Christian leaders have been doing, perhaps calling for more protection for our religious beliefs\?

Actually, no.

This is what I expect to happen. Especially if we truly are a “post-Christian nation” … and if I believe the Bible.

“Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Matthew 5:11

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me. If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have been guilty of sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. Whoever hates me hates my Father also. If I had not done among them the works that no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin, but now they have seen and hated both me and my Father. But the word that is written in their Law must be fulfilled: ‘They hated me without a cause.’”
John 15:18-25

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.

As we see society move farther away from God, I expect to see more people shooting at God — through shooting and otherwise attacking His people, the Church.

These things are crazy, stupid, and sad, but in a fallen world that lashes out at the very idea of God I expect it.

This should push us to pray all the more for peace, repentance, and the swift return of our Lord.

Let the Waters Rise …

In all things, seek the wisdom of God, and get started at Proverbial Thought!

I am a fan of Mikeschair, and I have posted about their music before over here.

When many preachers and teachers talk about God assisting people, they like using the stories of Jesus walking on water (John 6) and calming the sea (Matthew 8, Mark 4, Luke 8). These are stories that show God’s power and sovereignty over creation, therefore showing His power and sovereignty in your life.

One verse I have always enjoyed since reading it many years ago is Isaiah 43:1-3a (ESV):

But now thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
    he who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
    I have called you by name, you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
    and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
    and the flame shall not consume you.
For I am the Lord your God,
    the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.”

Knowing we have a Savior, One who can control our circumstances, who sees our brokenness, hurts, and fears, who saw our hopeless state of sin and rebellion against Him and sacrificed Himself for our forgiveness, we can follow Him in confidence and hope!

Let the Waters Rise – Mikeschair

Don’t know where to begin
It’s like my world’s caving in
And I try but I can’t control my fear
Where do I go from here?

Sometimes it’s so hard to pray
When You feel so far away
But I am willing to go
Where you want me to
God, I trust You

There’s a raging sea
Right in front of me
Wants to pull me in
Bring me to my knees
So let the waters rise
If You want them to
I will follow You
I will follow You
I will follow You

I will swim in the deep
‘Cuz You’ll be next to me
You’re in the eye of the storm
And the calm of the sea
You’re never out of reach

God, You know where I’ve been
You were there with me then
You were faithful before
You’ll be faithful again
I’m holding Your hand

There’s a raging sea
Right in front of me
Wants to pull me in
Bring me to my knees
So let the waters rise
If You want them to
I will follow You
I will follow You
I will follow You

God Your love is enough
You will pull me through
I’m holding onto You
God Your love is enough
I will follow You
I will follow You

Ohhh

There’s a raging sea
Right in front of me
Wants to pull me in
Bring me to my knees
So let the waters rise
If You want them to
I will follow You
I will follow You
I will follow You

Ohhh

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 07/27/2014

Stop questioning wisdom and find some at Proverbial Thought!

I recently heard a quote that “You know you are preaching grace right if people think they have license to sin.” (See Romans 6)

The thing is, I think most people either take this idea to heart or completely forget about God’s grace.

In either sense, they forget what God has said, and then they question what God has really said. In one direction it is sinful, and in the other direction it is misleading.

We must remember that He has said, “Go and sin no more.” (such as in John 8:11)

We must also remember that He has said, “You are forgiven.” (such as in Matthew 9:2; Mark 2:5; Luke 5:20, 7:48; and 1 John 2:12)

Also, it seems that it does not matter who you are, but a message similar to the poem today can hit you in the face, knock you down, and help you appreciate God and His grace in a new way.

That is the power of His grace!

 
___   ________   ___
Who are you to question Me?
You came before Me stricken,
I tell you you are healed,
Yet you go right back to your sin.
Still, I have said you are free.
You come back to be forgiven.
JUST STOP! Listen, please.
When you go that way again,
Turn to me, and you will see
You were forgiven for ever when
I sent my Son to that tree!
Stop sinning, my loved children.
You were made whole … complete,
When you said “I repent. Amen.”
Who are you to question Me?
Remember, I have called you friend!

 

Weekend Words & Sunday Stanzas – 11/24/2013

Heed the call of Wisdom through Proverbial Thought!

Every single person on Earth has been issued the same calling in this life by God. Most people will not heed this call.

This calling is simultaneously simple and the most difficult to accept on many levels.

This calling is only found through faith in the life and work of Jesus of Nazareth.

This calling is to believe and follow Jesus Christ, the living Son of God.

This week is Thanksgiving. May those of us who have been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb be thankful for this calling and freedom!

Your death on the cross is an invitation
Your resurrection is a call
You invite us into love and forgiveness
You call us into life and repentance
i accept that this is all true
i accept that You have done and do these
my response is to come to You
my response is to turn from my old life

His Love Never Fails with Passion

Get over to Proverbial Thought for some wisdom!

Recently, while listening to the song “One Thing Remains”, I was reminded of several things in general and one thing in particular.

The general things are easy:

  • We may face many things that may seem or are to big for us to handle, but God is always there loving us.
  • We may face things that terrify us, but God is always there loving us.
  • We may feel like no one in the world understands or loves us, but God is always there loving us.

What if I Stumble?

The thing that really hit me this time was how much God loves us … when we really mess up.

We may be forgiven, and we may be growing ever more like our Lord Jesus Christ. However, sometimes we stumble. Sometimes we outright disobey. Sometimes we walk into situations we know we should not.

Sometimes, we revert right back into our old selfish, prideful, arrogant, perverted mindset and do things our own way.

And God is always there loving us, calling us to repentance and grace.

What was accomplished through Christ on the cross at Calvary still covers our hapless, unthinking, uncaring, snubbing, defiant, sometimes unintentional sins.

Because His love never fails.

One Thing Remains – Jesus Culture (at Passion)

Your love never fails it never gives up
It never runs out on me.
Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me
Your love never fails, it never gives up
Your love
Your love.
Never gives up on me.
And it’s higher than the mountains that I face
And it’s stronger than the power of the grave
And constant in the trial and the change
This one thing remains.
Yeah.
Higher
And it’s higher than the mountains that I face
And it’s stronger than the power of the grave
And constant in the trial and the change
This one thing remains.
Your love never fails it never gives up
It never runs out on me.
Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me
Your love never fails, it never gives up
Your love.
On and on! Come on!
And on and on and on it comes
Yes, it overwhelms and satisfies my soul
And I never ever have to be afraid, this one thing
Remains!

This one thing remains!
Your love never fails it never gives up
It never runs out on me.
Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me
Your love never fails, it never gives up
In Death! In light! We sing!
In death! In light! I’m confident and covered
By the power of Your great Love!
My debt is paid! it’s nothing that can separate
My heart from Your great love.
Your love never fails it never gives up
It never runs out on me. sing it!

Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me
Your love never fails, it never gives up
Your Love!
ON AND ON AND ON!
And on and on and on it goes
It overwhelms and satisfies my soul
And I never ever have to be afraid
This one thing! Remains!
Your love never fails it never gives up
It never runs out on me.
Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me
Your love never fails, it never gives up
It never runs out on me!
Your Love
It’s Your love!