Thursday, December 3, 2015

Yes, as Long as My Friends Don't Know I'm Christian, Are We Selective Listening Christians?, Are we Making the Choices We Want Our Children to Emulate Posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling

In these lay a great multitude of impotent folk, of blind, halt, withered, waiting for the moving of the water.  For an angel went down at a certain season into the pool, and troubled the water: whosoever then first after the troubling of the water stepped in was made whole of whatsoever disease he had.  And a certain man was there, which had an infirmity thirty and eight years.  When Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time in that case, He saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?  The impotent man answered Him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.  Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.  And immediately the man was made whole, and took up his bed, and walked: and on the same day was the Sabbath.  The Jews therefore said unto him that was cured, It is the Sabbath day: it is not lawful for thee to carry thy bed.  He answered them, He that made me whole, the same said unto me, Take up thy bed, and walk.  Then asked they him, What Man is that which said unto thee, Take up thy bed, and walk?  And he that was healed wist not Who it was: for Jesus had conveyed Himself away, a multitude being in that place.  Afterward Jesus findeth him in the temple, and said unto him, Behold, thou art made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee.  John, Chapter 5, verses 3-14.

Something that impresses me about this passage is that Jesus asked the handicapped man, “Wilt thou be made whole?”  Now, it would seem any handicapped person in their right mind would say, “Sure I will.  I would do anything to be made whole!”  But I don’t think we always do that as Christians.  When Jesus gave His life for us and rose again to gain us Salvation, He is asking all of us, “Wilt thou be made whole?”  What would we reply? 
Would it be, “Yes, as long as my friends don’t know that I’m a Christian”?  “Yes, as long as I can still cheat on my spouse every now and then.  It really doesn’t mean a thing!”  “Yes, as long as I can still stab my co-workers in the back to get another wrung up the ladder of success.”  “Yes, just as long as I can party every now and then.  You know it doesn’t really hurt anything.  Besides, I need to relax now and then.”  When Jesus asks us if we will be made whole, all we have to do is believe in Him as our Lord and Savior.  The other part of being made whole is trying to live as examples of how He works in our lives.  I don’t think any of the responses above reflect that.  What will you say to the question Jesus poses in our lives, “Wilt thou be made whole?”

Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that heareth My Word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.  Verily, verily, I say unto you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the Voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.  John, Chapter 5, verses 24-25.

I had a hearing problem when I was growing up.  My mother took me to a specialist to check my hearing to make sure that there weren’t any major problems.  The doctor told my mother that I had selective-listening.  This meant I tuned out the things that I didn’t want to hear and only listened to the things that I wanted to hear.  Are we “Selective-listening Christians,” listening only to what we want to hear when it comes to God?  Are we only open to doing the Christian acts that are comfortable for us and don’t really require us to make any changes to grow as Christians?
You will notice that it talks about he that heareth My Word and believeth on Him that sent Me, not he that heareth only what he wants to hear and only believes when it’s convenient.  Hopefully, we aren’t using selective-listening in our Christian lives.

And when even was now come, His disciples went down unto the sea, And entered into a ship, and went over the sea toward Capernaum.  And it was now dark, and Jesus was not come to them.  And the sea arose by reason of a great wind that blew.  So when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs, they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the ship: and they were afraid.  But He saith unto them, It is I; be not afraid.  Then they willingly received Him into the ship: and immediately the ship was at land whither they went.  John, Chapter 6, verses 16-21.

I recently talked with my daughter and told her that I say the Lord’s Prayer or sing I Surrender All, when I’m feeling scared, stressed or like Satan is trying to pervade my thoughts to lead me astray.  She told me that she says: Be Not Afraid when she is experiencing similar things.  So, this passage has special significance for me for that reason.
I was thinking about the influence we have on our children’s lifestyle choices and their relationship with God, through the modeling we do.  My daughter has picked up some similar strategies to connect with God when she is feeling stressed, concerned, etc.  It’s much better that she picks up positive strategies like this, than seeing me turn to alcohol or worse, as situations arise.  You don’t realize the impact you have on your children by the choices you make.  Are you making choices you want your children to emulate?  If not, it’s not too late to change the way you turn to God in time of need, joy, etc.  It may have a positive impact on your child’s life, regardless of their age. Click on this post's title to read a related Bible passage.

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.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

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

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