Monday, December 31, 2012

Not Asking Jesus if there are Good Benefits or Stock Options

And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptized thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?  John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth One among you, Whom ye know not; He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, Whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose.  These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.  The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.  This is He of whom I said, After me cometh a Man which is preferred before me: for He was before me.  And I knew Him not: but that He should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.  And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon Him.  And I knew Him not: but He that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on Him, the same is He which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.  And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.  Again the next day after John stood, and the two of His disciples: and looking upon Jesus as He walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!  And the two disciples heard Him speak, and they followed Jesus.  Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye?  They said unto Him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest Thou?  He saith unto them, Come and see.  They came and saw where He dwelt, and abode with Him that day: for it was about the tenth hour.  One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother.  He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is being interpreted, the Christ.  And he brought him to Jesus.  And when Jesus beheld him, He said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.  The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and saith unto him, Follow Me.  Now Philip was of Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter.  Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found Him, of whom Moses in the Law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.  John, Chapter 1, verses 25-45.

I think this passage is very moving.  It shows the dedication of the followers of Jesus.  John the Baptist spent his adult life not earning a good living, gaining status or climbing the ladder of success; but instead, he told people of the coming of Jesus.  John the Baptist had a very humble, but magnificent job!  Jesus’ disciples gave up their previous jobs and lifestyles to join Him.  They didn’t ask Jesus if there would be good benefits, what the stock options were or what was in it for them.  They just followed Jesus.
It’s sad that it would be difficult in this day and age for most of us, including me, to totally give up everything and follow Jesus.  I want to go in the direction where Jesus needs me just like the disciples who were willing to do as Jesus asked.

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. Debbie


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

Thursday, December 27, 2012

God Is There Loving Me When I Find it Difficult to Love Myself...

And while He yet spake, behold a multitude, and he that was called Judas, one of the twelve, went before them, and drew near unto Jesus to kiss Him.  But Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrayest thou the Son of Man with a kiss?  When they which were about Him saw what would follow, they said unto Him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword?  And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear.  And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far.  And He touched his ear, and healed him.  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 47-51.

I don’t know if I could do something nice like heal a person who was part of a plot to kill me.  I’ve been known to remember situations for over twenty years where someone has been rude or hurtful to me, yet I am dependent on Jesus’ forgiving nature.  If He remembered all my sins the same way I have harbored resentments toward others, there’s no way I would ever make it to heaven.  He forgives me over and over, even when I don’t deserve His forgiveness.  He is there loving me when I find it difficult to love myself.  I’m so fortunate to have Jesus as my Savior and Redeemer.
I write these things and find I’m very two-faced.  I say things like Savior and Redeemer in my writing and realize that I would never be caught dead saying these things in public.  I think that’s because I don’t want to sound like a religious fanatic to others.  I might say that I love Jesus, but that’s usually as far as my profession of faith goes.  I need to pay attention because I could be faced with Jesus saying, “I love Debbie, but I can’t allow her to have Salvation because she is afraid to risk the condemnation of others.  She is afraid that if she says I’m her Savior and Redeemer, others will think she is a religious fanatic!  What a shame.  She had such potential, but if she can’t acknowledge Me, I don’t feel obliged to acknowledge her.  Such a shame!”
Actually, this reminds me about the passage I had just written where Simon Peter denied Jesus three times.  Well, Simon Peter still received Salvation, because he learned from his mistakes and realized how terrible it was that he had denied Jesus.  Simon Peter turned his life around where he became someone who readily proclaimed his love for Jesus.  Now I need to be able to do the same.  I need to turn my life around and not hide behind my fear of what people will think of me.  I’m still very weak in this area and need to ask that God gives me the willingness to let Him guide my actions and my words, now and always, not just when it’s comfortable.

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. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

I've Said There's No Way I Will Slip Into Temptation

And He came out, and went, as He was wont, to the mount of Olives: and His disciples also followed Him.  And when He was at the place, He said unto them, Pray that ye enter not into temptation.  And He was withdrawn from them about a stone’s cast, and kneeled down, and prayed, Saying, Father, if Thou be willing, remove this cup from Me: nevertheless not My will, but Thine, be done.  And there appeared an angel unto Him from heaven, strengthening Him.  And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly: and His sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.  And when He rose up from prayer, and was come to His disciples, He found them sleeping for sorrow.  And said unto them, Why sleep ye? rise and pray, lest ye enter into temptation.  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 39-46.

As a Christian, it’s easy for me to say, “Oh, no problem.  I love You so much, Jesus; that there’s no way I will slip into temptation.”  Well, if the disciples who loved Jesus very much could slip into temptation, then we need to learn from their actions and realize the importance of praying for God to keep us from temptation.
I recognize that sometimes when I say the Lord’s Prayer each night, I tend to ramble through it even though I know I shouldn’t.  I’m not sure that God acknowledges prayers when we just ramble through them in a repetitive manner.  When I say my prayers in the morning, I ask God to take care of all sorts of things: my family, the world, and me; but I don’t ask Him to protect us from temptation.  This has made me extremely aware of my need to add that to my daily prayers and to slow down and focus on what I’m praying.
Here are some related passages:
*Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.  Matthew, Chapter 26, verse 41.


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, December 20, 2012

All Too Often I'm a "Luke-warm Christian"

And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.  And he said unto Him, Lord, I am ready to go with Thee, both into prison, and to death.  And He said, I tell thee, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny that thou knowest Me.  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 31-34.
(I’ve skipped some verses.) 
Then took they Him, and led Him, and brought Him into the high priest’s house.  And Peter followed afar off.  And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them.  But a certain maid beheld him as he sat by the fire, and earnestly looked upon him, and said, This man was also with Him.  And he denied Him, saying, Woman, I know Him not.  And after a little while another saw him, and said, Thou art also of them.  And Peter said, Man, I am not.  And about the space of one hour after another confidently affirmed, saying, Of a truth this fellow also was with Him, for he is a Galilean.  And Peter said, Man, I know not what thou sayest.  And immediately, while he yet spake, the cock crew.  And the Lord turned, and looked upon Peter.  And Peter remembered the Word of the Lord, how He had said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny Me thrice.  And Peter went out, and wept bitterly.  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 54-62.

When I read this Bible passage, I reflect on how I sometimes think I am very dedicated to God, but really I’m a “Luke-warm Christian!”  In my mind, I feel like God is the most important part of my life, but when a situation arises where I could share my faith with others, I avoid it.  I say to myself, “Well, this isn’t the right timing for me to discuss Jesus and all He’s done for me.  Another time would be more beneficial and the person would probably be more open to it then.” 
Baloney!!!  Who am I trying to fool?  I guess the only one I’m trying to fool is myself, because God knows when I avoid situations where I could have shared my relationship with Him.  Although I don’t deny God openly as Simon Peter did, I’m denying Him in my heart through my choice not to share my love for Jesus with others.  Sometimes, the truth hurts!


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. 

Monday, December 17, 2012

Difficult for Me to Comprehend Such a Truly Selfless Love for Others

But, behold, the hand of him that betrayeth Me is with Me on the table.  And truly the Son of Man goeth, as it was determined: but woe unto that man by whom He is betrayed!  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 21-22.

I remember times in high school when I thought people were talking about me when they looked in my general direction.  They might not have been doing anything at all.  I was just very self-conscious, as are many teenagers at that age.  I had a difficult time associating with those people that I thought were disloyal to me, whether it was real or just perceived.  It amazes me how Jesus didn’t just think someone was going to betray Him, He knew it!  He didn’t avoid the whole situation, as I would have.  He continued to associate with the person that was going to betray Him.
What love He had to have for us to bear these interactions, even when He knew the very people He loved were going to be disloyal to Him.  It’s difficult for me to comprehend such a truly selfless love for others.  I’m so very fortunate Jesus is my Lord and Savior!


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, December 13, 2012

Forgiven Though I Get Self-Righteous at Times and Puff Up My Ego

And when the hour was come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him.  And He said unto them, With desire I have desired to eat this passover with you before I suffer: For I say unto you, I will not any more eat thereof, until it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God.  And He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves: For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.  And He took Bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is My Body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of Me.  Likewise also the Cup after supper, saying, This Cup is the New Testament in My Blood which is shed for you.  Luke, Chapter 22, verses 14-20.

These words are very significant to me each time I prepare to have Communion.  They remind me of how Jesus knew what was going to happen to Him and He still went through it anyway…for me.  He gave His life for me, even though I get self-righteous at times and puff up my ego…For me, even though I can get cranky with my family, especially when my blood sugar is low…For me, even though I look at the angles to see how I can keep more of the money I think I deserve rather than giving it to Uncle Sam…For me, even though I have a difficult time giving up control and trusting God to take care of me…For me, even though I have some hateful, jealous thoughts in my mind, at times.  I could go on, but you get the picture.  I’m a very sinful human being and Jesus gave His life for me…and He gave it for you, too!

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.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Those With No Remorse for Evicting Widows

Then in the audience of all the people He said unto His disciples, Beware of the scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; Which devour widows’ houses, and for a show make long prayers: the same shall receive greater damnation.  Luke, Chapter 20, verses 45-47.

This reminds me of old westerns I used to watch on TV.  It would show the banker (not to imply this is the way bankers are or this behavior is limited only to bankers.)  He would appear nice enough, saying hi to the husband, tip his hat to the wife and did “coochie coos” to her baby.  This banker is a good upstanding churchgoer.  He appears to be the pillar of society, a role model to others.
Then as the plot thickens, the banker and his cohorts try to squeeze the farmer and his family off their land.  He secretly knows there is a lot of profit to be gained by that particular piece of property.  The husband dies in a freak accident which is highly suspicious.  Then the banker comes to give the grieving wife his condolences and tell her how sorry he is about her loss.  He says that out of the goodness of his heart, he will give the wife an extra month’s extension on paying what is owed on the property before he forecloses on their mortgage.
The rest of the movie is dedicated to showing how the banker and his cohorts try to make it difficult for her, and those that befriend her, to pay the money owed.  Of course, in the movie, good wins out over evil and the lady and her baby get to stay in their home.  But, in real life; that doesn’t always happen. 
There are some who are very cunning and would have no remorse for evicting the widow and her child from their home, because they are within their rights as far as the law goes.  These people would continue to go to church without a guilty conscience, because they have rationalized their actions.  The thing is…God knows what they do and no amount of rationalization is going to cut it with God for those who take advantage of widows and orphans!
Here is a related passage:
*Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!  For ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.  Matthew, Chapter 23, 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.

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

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Trying to Give Caeser a Little Less of What Seems Mine

And they watched Him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves just men, that they might take hold of His Words, that so they might deliver Him unto the power and authority of the governor.  And they asked Him, saying, Master, we know that Thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly: Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no?  But He perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye Me?  Show Me a penny.  Whose image and superscription hath it?  And He said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar’s, and unto God the things which be God’s.  And they could not take hold of His Words before the people: and they marvelled at His answer, and held their peace.  Luke, Chapter 20, verses 20-26.

I keep having problems with this one.  I’ve sold several different products in side-line businesses for the sole purpose of trying to give Caesar a little less of what seems mine.  (Now there is nothing wrong with having a side-line business or selling things to gain a profit.  My goal was distinctly motivated toward being able to legally keep more of my money, although I did everything in my power to do it legally.)
Writing this book has made me more aware of my motives.  I have given up the side-line businesses, since my motives weren’t in-line with what God would want me to do.  I keep letting worldly things sneak in and put a wedge in my relationship with God.
I guess I have two options when God makes me aware of these things.  I can try to ignore them and pretend that I have blinders on and don’t really understand what He is showing me, or I can make the changes necessary to be in-line with what God wants.  In order to do that, I am donating the profits I get from this book to a non-profit organization or a charitable cause.  Money wasn’t the reason I wrote this.  I felt strongly led to share these insights with you, with the desire that you would better understand the positive influence the Bible can have in your daily 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. Debbie


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

Monday, December 3, 2012

Salvation Given to Anyone Who Believes That Jesus is Their Savior

Then began He to speak to the people this parable: A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time.  And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty.  And again he sent another servant; and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty.  And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out.  Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him.  But when the husbandmen saw him they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours.  So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him.  What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them?  He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others.  And when they heard it, they said, God forbid.  Luke, Chapter 20, verses 9-16.

After reading the parable, this is my opinion of what God might say.  “I protected My people and promised them a Savior (Jesus).  Then I sent them prophets to tell of Jesus’ coming and they ignored them.  I thought that they just didn’t understand that I’m trying to help them turn their lives around so that they can have Salvation with Me.  So, I decided to send John the Baptist and they ignored and killed him.  I figured surely they will acknowledge My only begotten Son, Jesus, so I sent Jesus to them.
“They totally ignored the fact that Jesus is the Son of God, and then they had the audacity to kill Him.  That way they didn’t have to feel guilty anymore for living their worldly lives not focused on My teachings.  They didn’t have any idea about who they were dealing with, because Jesus arose from the grave on the third day to fulfill the Scriptures.  He conquered death so that all who truly believe in Him will have eternal life in heaven.
“You are ungrateful people!  You killed My only begotten Son and don’t deserve the gift of Salvation that Jesus has provided for you.  I’m going to give that gift to anyone who believes that Jesus is their Savior, because you aren’t worthy of it!”


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. Debbie

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

How to Know Jesus Is God's Son

Christian Overeaters Past and Present Support Link

Christian Overeaters Past and Present Support Link
Read 100s of Christian Overeaters Past and Present Blog Posts and You Tube Videos

Zoe Ministry.org

Zoe Ministry.org
Empower Orphans to Raise Their Siblings

Heifer International.org

Heifer International.org
A Gift of an Animal Can Change People's Lives