Had to repost this via @youngnhealthy #love #sotrue
I'm a twentysomething, constantly realizing I know almost nothing. I study Human Resources, sell shoes and try to let my faith shine through it all. This blog is a bit of everything that interests me.
Had to repost this via @youngnhealthy #love #sotrue
Came home to surprise my mom and snagged these from her collection. She has the BEST books. 👌 #motherknowsbest
Best chats! Best food! Best girl! 👭@stephyds #mixedchicks #ethnic #preciousmoments
Lunch!!! #food #health #greens
Next weeks beauty supply #food #love #health
Beet juice and salad equals meal from heaven 😍#love #food
Day off equals food prep #health #food #love #cleanbodycleanmind
I wore a face that told the world I didn’t need anything
That made everything seem just fine
That pushed away Your presence
And shielded me from Your love
I was by all accounts a wretched case
Wrapped in white linens
And righteous as I thought I was
And smart as I perceived myself
I was neither
In some raw moment You stole
My wrong perceptions of myself
And cut down my pride
Till my facade broke and
An ocean flooded from me
And I crashed upon the rocks of regret
And my soul would have drowned
If You did not take me out of the waters
And set my feet upon dry land
And breathe Your breath in me
And bind up my wounds with your grace
In some way I was like an old instrument
Out of tune and broken by time and dust
And You were like a master musician
Scraping my surface and tuning my insides
Until I was beautiful
And then somehow you made music with me
Sounds of beauty coming from a heart that once was dead.
From a life that should have been lost
Before You came I thought I was strong
But when You changed me I realized I was weak at best
And at worst a dry and wilted rose
I was once my own God,
But when You came to me I remembered
what it felt like to be human
If I do not belong to You
Then I do not belong
And if I am not in Your presence
Then I am nowhere
The rhythm of
Your weeping is
And in heaven angels
Dance to it
Wounded in the unknown sea
It is impossible
How love can reach through levels deep
To take from us
The hurts we keep
He said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example…
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.
Img from: http://sallysjourney.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8341c7a9f53ef01538dfbd8cc970b-800wi
John 13 is a story humility sealed by service. The Lord Jesus gets up from the table at the Last Supper and ties the towel at his waist and then he does something so strange and so unfamiliar. He kneels. The leader kneels. He kneels at the feet of those who will intentionally and unintentionally betray him.
Here is an excellent picture of humility:
Jesus knew Judas’ plan. He knew Judas would wrong Him even after He washed his feet. Jesus knew Peter would deny His very name. Yet He did it anyway, kneeling in obedience to the Father’s will. The wrongdoing had not yet been committed so Jesus could not yet forgive them. But He did serve them. He knelt to serve them. He knelt to wash them. And so the true mark of humility today in the body of Christ, if we are to follow Jesus’ example must be service.
Can you serve the one who has wronged you? Maybe they have not yet asked for your forgiveness but can you have compassion on them, even if their plight is their own doing? Even if they are continuing to do what is wrong? Can you serve them by praying for them? If you can then you are following in the footsteps of the Lord and you are exemplifying deep faith.
The faith that what has been done to you was part of a greater purpose
The faith that all things are in the hands of Jesus.
This faith will make room for forgiveness in your heart.
For if you carry the grudge you will also carry the pain.
Lord, give us grace to do just as you have done, to serve just as you have served.
God’s word is a purifying agent in our lives. It cleanses. It is compared to clean water in Scripture (Eph. 5). Much of the renewal discussed in Romans 12 comes from God’s word. To discern prophecy we must understand God’s Word. This is the only way to decipher the Holy Spirit from another Spirit which is unclean and the only way to tell Spirit from flesh. David clung to God’s Word for comfort, peace, hope, healing. He clung to God’s Word for instruction. If you want pure love. If you want to live right. If you want to lay aside sexual filth and addictions than you need cleansing.
God’s Word is the mind of Christ.
This past year I have been privileged to attend an amazing church. My pastor is an excellent communicator. The only problem with this is that now when I attend conferences or conventions I sometimes notice a trend. Many speakers seem to focus more on the delivery of the message than the message itself. I will label this “self-indulgent” preaching for the sake of this post.
Of course, God is always faithful to move and to speak to his people by the power of His spirit. But it is dangerous when the point of a message (which is often simple and wonderful) falls prey to elaborate metaphors and incessant yelling. Self-indulgent preaching may hype up a crowd but it leaves us with little take-away.
Yes. Passion, stories, metaphors and excitement are often important elements to a sermon. I understand, they work well to enhance a message, illustrate a point, or help the audience better understand. But the danger, I feel, is when they actually end up becoming barriers to the message. When this obstruction occurs, we have entered the arena of self-indulgent preaching. This is the kind of preaching that seems to do more for the preacher than for those who are being preached to.
Of course, I am a layperson. I don’t know the hardships of prepping to speak to crowds full of thousands on a regular basis. I am not a preacher, I don’t have a bunch of preacher friends and I certainly am not going to be starting a preacher’s consulting business anytime soon. But I think this is what may make this feedback something to consider-if anyone even reads this. And, after all, we are all part of the church-we are in this together.
Here are 2 common elements I find that run through the messages that have impacted my life so intensely (yes, I do believe the preached Word has the power to change lives—it has changed mine).
Clear Communication: Clear communication is so amazing! When we know and understand your point we can actually use what you are saying in our daily lives. We can communicate it to others, and we can understand the Bible more clearly. Case in point: I just attended a youth convention where the preacher practiced clear communication. He told us the title: Uncaged. He discussed three ways God’s people become caged up. He used props to represent the cage. He used examples and photos and he was definitely excited about it. But again, these were all used to enhance the message itself and to help us understand. It was simple, Biblical and it helped so many of us.
Audience Consideration: Context context context! I am currently studying Human Resources and the concept of considering who you are speaking to is drilled into us. There’s nothing worse than going to a youth convention and the preacher decides to preach to the preachers in the room instead of the youth. Or attending a Holy Ghost crusade where the preacher doesn’t explain the Holy Spirit. Something else that falls under this category is the Pentecostal clichés. Of course there is nothing wrong with using phrases we know and find comfort in. But what about non-believers? Communicating in a barrage of Pentecostal clichés may get a crowd going, but it may also force those who are not so familiar with Pentecostalism to spend time decoding your message instead of receiving it in language they can understand and identify with. Would it hurt to take a minute to explain what is meant by phrases like “the blood”, or “Holy Ghost”?
I guess what I am saying in this little message (or “sermon” if you will) from the pew to the pulpit is this:
First, thank you preachers for speaking to us. I think I can speak for my fellow pew people when I say we love you. We need you. We are looking up to and trusting you to deliver God’s Word to us in a way we can understand and identify with. And breathe easy, if you’ve got a good point—we want to hear it! You don’t have to fluff it up or make it beautiful, we are hungry for the food, not the packaging. We want to understand God’s word and we want to use it in our lives. So preach preacher-give it all ya got! But please, preach it in a way we understand, in a way that makes sense, and in a way that our non believing friends can understand.
It is true that without faith it is impossible to please God.
Faith is a mustard seed that must be exercised, not a special emotion. Faith is simply a belief no matter how small, an inkling that leads you to an action. At the point your belief turns to action is when it has become faith. Faith requires action where hope does not, hope often is too tired for action. Faith may be tired, it may even be afraid but it acts. This is why obedience is better than sacrifice, and why obedience itself can be counted as faith as we see in the Old testament with abraham. Gideon’s experience is an example that can also be used. He was a little bit cynical, very afraid and insecure, but his desire was to be obedient to God’s voice and so he acted as god had asked. He obeyed Gods voice with a sincere heart and so was consecrated by god unto great ministry. Faith is the key ingredient which begins and then sustains the christian walk, allowing us to progress from conversion, to consecration, to ministry.