Thursday, August 30, 2012

I've Been Just a "Sunday Christian"

And it came to pass, as He spake these things, a certain woman of the company lifted up her voice, and said unto Him, Blessed is the womb that bare Thee, and the paps which Thou hast sucked.  But He said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the Word of God, and keep it.  Luke, Chapter 11, verses 27-28.

God lets me know in this passage that it’s not good enough to hear the Word of God.  We are supposed to live the life that He suggests.  It reminds me of teaching math to children.  I would explain a new math concept to nodding heads.  I would ask if anyone had a question, but they rarely did.  I thought they really understood the concept, but as I walked around the room, I found that although the children thought they understood the concept, they weren’t applying it and were lost.
It’s pretty easy to hear things in church and feel it’s impacted your life.  If we are just “Sunday Christians” cussing at other motorists, yelling at our kids or being rude to others the rest of the week, we may not be living our lives as examples of how God works in us.
Here is a related passage:
*For whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sister, and mother.  Matthew, Chapter 12, verse 50.

Because this example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life only focused on a portion of the passages, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages.



This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

Caught Up in My Own Little World

But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?  And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed leaving him half dead.  And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.  And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.  But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him, And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.  And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.  Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell, among the thieves?  And he said, He that showed mercy on him, Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.  Luke, Chapter 10, verses 29-37.

It makes me think of all the people that need help on the side of the road that I ignore.  I have a dilemma.  It isn’t very safe to be picking up people by the side of the road these days, but I bet there are things I can do to help anyway.  I could probably ask them if they need me to call a tow truck or something.  That might be risky too.  What I have been doing is using my cell phone, at times, to call the highway patrol to tell them the approximate location of the broken down car.  I know it’s not as big an effort as the Samaritan made, but I think we all need to start someplace.  I get too caught up in my own little world and tend to ignore the things that make me uncomfortable or that I really don’t want to deal with.  I need to be more sensitive to the needs of others, being an example on a regular basis of how God works in my life.

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.


This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I've Been a Self-Righteous Chrisitan

Then there arose a reasoning among them, which of them should be greatest.  And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a child, and set him by Him, and said unto them, Whosoever shall receive this child in My Name receiveth Me: and whosoever shall receive Me receiveth Him that sent Me: for he that is least among you all, the same shall be great.  Luke, Chapter 9, verses 46-48.

Being a “Self-righteous Christian” too many times to mention, this passage reminds us that we shouldn’t get caught up in determining how great we are for all the good things we do in God’s Name.  That isn’t what it’s all about.  God says, For he who is least among you all, the same shall be great.”  I need to make sure that I’m focused on living the life God wants for me rather than trying to look pious to others by attaining religious status.

Because this example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life only focuses on a portion of the passage, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.


This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Monday, August 20, 2012

God and American Graffiti

For whosoever shall be ashamed of Me and of My Words, of him shall the Son of Man be ashamed, when He shall come in His own Glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.  Luke, Chapter 9, verse 26.

This relates to a situation that made a major difference in my relationship with God.  One time, I was doing something that was an outward sign of my faith.  It was in a place where other people could see what I was doing and would have known I am a Christian.  I’m ashamed to say that this had made me really uncomfortable.
The thought in my mind shortly after this was about the movie “American Graffiti”.  One of the main characters had been in charge of keeping an eye on a young pre-teen or teenage girl.  He had a reputation of being “cool” and didn’t like being a glorified babysitter.  Later, he and the young lady got to know each other better and became friends.  Then there was a point in the movie where he was driving down the main drag and he saw a group of his friends.  He realized that they would see him with this young girl and it could hurt his “cool image” if they knew he was babysitting.  So he asked his new found friend to duck down in the seat so his other friends wouldn’t see her sitting in his car, thus maintaining his reputation.
Well, that’s what I was doing with God.  I was saying to God, “You are really important to me and I love you a lot, but I don’t want other people to know how important You are to me.  I want to look ‘cool’ to others and don’t want them to think I’m a religious fanatic.  So, God, please duck down so they don’t know I’m a Christian.”
This movie impacted my life and my relationship with God because it helped me realize that I used to shy away from mentioning anything about God or my faith to anyone.  I can’t say it’s all that easy for me now, because I’m still very weak and have a hard time risking ridicule from others.  I do try to say things like, “Boy, God was really looking after you,” when there was a miracle in someone’s life that they may have overlooked.
When I do this, I’m generally anxious because I never know how anyone is going to respond to these statements.  I’m always afraid that they are going to think I’m a fanatic and shy away from me, but I have never received that response from anyone.  In fact, people have been very appreciative and it has opened up opportunities for the other person to share their perspective of how God has influenced their life.  I need to continue to focus on being more willing to take risks for God.  I would never want Him to turn His back on me the way I have done to Him.

Because this example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life only focuses on a portion of the passage, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.



This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Losing Your Salvation in the Process

And He said to them all, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for My sake, the same shall save it.  For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away?  Luke, Chapter 9, verses 23-25.

I think God is telling us that we have to be totally dedicated to Him.  It’s all too easy to get caught up in our daily lives and focus on getting ahead in the world.  It’s especially difficult since there is so much pressure to try to keep up with the Jones’s that we might lose sight of our goal.  To paraphrase what Jesus said, “What good is it to have all these worldly things and lose your Salvation in the process?  Those that are willing to give up everything, including their worldly lives for Me, will have eternal life in Heaven.”
Here are some related passages:
*He that loveth father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.  And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me.  Matthew, Chapter 10, verses 37-38.
*Then said Jesus unto His disciples, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.  For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for My sake shall find it.  For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?  or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?  For the Son of Man shall come in the Glory of His Father with His angels; and then He shall reward every man according to his works.  Matthew, Chapter 16, verses 24-27.

This an example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life and it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages.


This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Monday, August 13, 2012

Subtle Things Can Shake Our Foundation

Whosoever cometh to Me, and heareth My sayings, and doeth them, I will show you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.  But he that heareth, and doeth not, is like a man that without a foundation built an house upon the earth; against which the storm did beat vehemently, and immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was great.  Luke, Chapter 6, verses 47-49.

I need to make sure that my faith in God has a firm foundation like the house built on rock, because my faith has to withstand all the human temptations that arise.  Some of those temptations are very subtle and can let little things into our lives that seem very minor but still shake our foundation.  Food has always been one of my bigger vices.
My younger brother was always very giving.  I’m ashamed to say that I took advantage of him when he wasn’t even in school yet.  Being the youngest and the only boy in the family, he had a piggy bank full of money.  When my parents weren’t around, I talked him into breaking into his piggy bank to get all his money out to take with us to the movies.  Being the generous person that he is, he shared all his money with his older sister.  I bought ice cream after ice cream, followed by enough candy bars to make a person sick.  He had trusted me, but my ulterior motives interfered with being an example of my faith.  Like I said, we have to be careful about the subtle things in life that sneak in and shake our foundation on rock.  Something very minor could cause that foundation to crumble!
Here is a related passage:
*Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.  And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.  And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at His doctrine.  Matthew, Chapter 7, verses 24-28.

Because this an example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages.
This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Critiquing Other People's Behavior

And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?  Either how canst thou say to thy brother, Brother, let me pull out the mote that is in thine eye, when thou thyself beholdest not the beam that is in thine own eye?  Thou hypocrite, cast out first the beam out of thine own eye, and then shalt thou see clearly to pull out the mote that is in thy brother’s eye.  Luke, Chapter 6, verses 41-42.

From what I have read in the Bible, God doesn’t want us to get to the point we EVER feel so self-righteous that we can be critiquing other people’s behavior or choices.  We need to focus on our own choices and make sure we are being the best example of our faith we can possibly be.
Here is a related passage:
*And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?  Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?  Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.  Matthew, Chapter 7, verses 3-5.

Because this an example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages.


This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please share by clicking on comments below. Thanks! Debbie

Monday, August 6, 2012

I Don't Want to Fall in a Ditch

And He spake a parable unto them, Can the blind lead the blind? shall they not both fall into the ditch?  Luke, Chapter 6, verse 39.

Sometimes we get into a routine of doing whatever everyone else is doing.  If they are going to a particular church, we try it out.  If our friends use God’s Name in vain, we forget what we learned in Sunday school while we were growing up and start using His Name in vain too.  If everyone else is doing it, it must not be all that bad.  Right???
We need to make sure the people we choose to follow are those who make choices God would approve of, or we just might be following someone right to Hell (the ditch).  That definitely isn’t the direction I want to go!
Here is a related passage:
*Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind, And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.  Matthew, Chapter 15, verse 14.


Because this an example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages. Debbie



This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please share by clicking on comments below. Thanks! Debbie

Thursday, August 2, 2012

You Can't Con God!

Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven: Give, and it shall be given unto you, good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.  For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.  Luke, Chapter 6, verses 37-38.

This message reminds me that I would NOT want God to judge me by the same standards I use to judge other people.  I’m very thankful that He reminds me of this, because I often find myself being critical or judgmental of others.
When we genuinely give to others out of our need, God will always make sure we are provided for.  This is a miracle unto itself, similar to the loaves and fishes.  I do have some concerns though.  There are some supposed churches that promote giving to others as a plan to get financial reward in return.  They talk to their parishioners about giving lots of money to the church or to causes in order to get great wealth for their good deeds.  Well, this is God we are talking about and He’s all-knowing.  He can tell when we are genuinely giving to others and when we are giving to others with ulterior motives.  You can’t con God!
Here are some related passages:
*And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto Him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, they say unto Him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act.  Now Moses in the Law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest Thou?  This they said, tempting Him, that they might have to accuse Him.  But Jesus stooped down, and with His finger wrote on the ground, as though He heard them not.  So when they continued asking Him, He lifted up Himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.  And again He stooped down, and wrote on the ground.  And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone; and the woman standing in the midst.  When Jesus had lifted up Himself, and saw none but the woman, He said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers?  hath no man condemned thee?  She said, No man, Lord.  And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.  Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the Light of the World: He that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life.  John, Chapter 8, verses 3-12.
*Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things.  But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to Truth against them which commit such things.  And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?  Romans, Chapter 2, verses 1-3.
*Judge not, that ye be not judged.  For with what judgment: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.  Matthew, Chapter 7, verses 1-2.

 
Because this example of how I’ve applied these Bible passages to my life only focused on a portion of the passages, it doesn’t necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passages.


This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please share by clicking on comments below. Thanks! Debbie

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