speaking or doing…

 2 Do not be rash with your mouth,
      And let not your heart utter anything hastily before God.
      For God is in heaven, and you on earth;
      Therefore let your words be few.
       3 For a dream comes through much activity,
      And a fool’s voice is known by his many words. -Eccl. 5

Are you a talker or a doer?  This passage from Solomon (a very wise man indeed) reminds us that speaking or talking can make us foolish. The old saying “he talks the talk, but doesn’t walk the walk” is essentially what Solomon was trying to convey.

If we only talk about God, but don’t follow God’s Word through obedience, we are but fools in everybody’s  eyes, not just God’s. Therefore, next time you say something . . . anything . . . are you just saying it, . . .  or are you doing it also?  Food for thought…

Mary Had a Little Lamb (the modern version)

Mary had a little lamb,
His fleece was white as snow.
And everywhere that Mary went,
The Lamb was sure to go.

He followed her to school each day,
T’wasn’t even in the rule.
He made the children laugh and play.
To have a Lamb at school.

And then the rules all changed one day,
Illegal it became;
To bring the Lamb of God to school,
Or even speak His Name.

Every day got worse and worse,
And days turned into years.
Instead of hearing children laugh,
We heard gun shots and tears.

What must we do to stop the crime,
That’s in our schools today?
Let’s let the Lamb come back to school,
And teach our kids to pray!

                                       – Author Unknown

Let’s talk Commandments…

A Sunday school teacher was discussing the Ten Commandments with her five and six year olds.

After explaining the commandment to “honor thy father and thy mother,” she asked, “Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?”

Without missing a beat one little boy answered, “Thou shall not kill.”


a BIG step…

TODAY is a BIG step. After all, my wonderful wife turns 40!  So how does this have anything to do with God?

Well, first off, God gave us life.

Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture – Psalm 100:3

And we also know that God gave us long life (if we follow Him):

And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.” – 1Kings 3:14

The fear of the Lord prolongs life, but the years of the wicked will be short. – Proverbs 10:27
“Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” – Ephesians 6:2-3

I want to THANK Kimberly for her obedience to the Lord, obeying His commands, which resulted in her living a long life, and also led to my Salvation. Without her I would be nothing, have nothing, and be lost. So I want to say Thanks from the bottom of my heart and soul for helping to lead me to Christ!  I love you sweetie!

FREEDOM – at last

Many American speak of “freedom.” After all – isn’t that what our wonderful country was founded on? 

I believe so! Interestingly, this morning I found a passage of Scripture that altered my view of freedom:

 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. – 2 Corinthians 3:17

As one reads this passage, it is not meant to say that freedom exists everywhere (even though God can be everywhere). This passage’s context is talking about the soul, the inner-workings of our human bodies. Paul is telling us that WE can be free – we don’t have to be bonded in sin anymore. The next verse reads:

 And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.

With the FREEDOM comes a transformation – one of our body and mind that helps us change from our sinful nature into the nature of Christ-likeness!

Now THAT’S FREEDOM!

 

Liquid, Fragile or Perishable?

When a woman decided to send the old family Bible to her brother in another state,
the postal worker asked her if there was anything breakable in the package.

“Only the Ten Commandments,” she replied.

–author unknown

Jonah, the whale, and ____

Many of you know the story of Jonah and the whale, but for any that don’t, here’s a quick summary:

Jonah 1:1-3 And the Word of Jehovah came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their evil has come up before Me. But Jonah rose up to flee to Tarshish from the presence of Jehovah. And he went down to Joppa. And he found a ship going to Tarshish. And he gave its fare, and went down into it, in order to go with them to Tarshish, away from the sight of Jehovah.

Jonah got in the boat and went to sleep in the lower quarters. Then God caused a storm to rage on the sea because He was upset that Jonah didn’t listen to Him, and he was running away from God.

The men on the boat couldn’t figure out why God would cause such a storm, and decided to determine who God was angry at. The lot fell to Jonah and after struggling with the storm, the men threw Jonah overboard as he requested, because he had been running from the Lord. A great whale then swallowed him. He was inside the whale for 3 days.

Jonah then said (Jonah 2:4) … I am cast off from Your eyes, yet I will look again toward Your holy temple. (Jonah 2:10) And Jehovah spoke to the fish, and it vomited Jonah out on the dry land.

Many times we are disobedient to God. And sometimes we see the immediate consequences like Jonah did. Other times, the consequences of disobedience are not as evident; however, they are still there.

Let’s make 2011 a year of obedience. After all, who wants to spend 3 days in a whale?

Sometimes it hurts…to know you’re wrong

I remember so many times in my life when I thought I knew what I was doing. In fact, I’m sure that tomorrow I’ll realize the mistakes I made today.

 Job 32:6-7  

 

I am young, and you are very old; therefore I was afraid, and dared not show you my opinion. I said, days should speak, and the multitude of years should teach wisdom.

This passage from Job reminds us that those with more experience than us are normally more mature and know better than we do. The exception to this is when the Spirit of God is with us.

Many times Pastors and Youth Pastors are challenged for their decisions to move churches or announce “divine guidance” that they receive from the Lord. Many times these decisions just don’t make sense to others.

I recall just over two years ago a decision I made that others opposed (sending out my ministry resume to only 1 church – Big Sandy Baptist). I believe it was the right decision, and now we are at home at Big Sandy, over two years and counting. 🙂

However, many people make decisions without consulting others and without consulting God. This is usually done under selfish motives; they do things to make themself happy, regardless of how it affects others. In the end, these decisions are invariably wrong and they must face the consequences. 

We must all remember, however, that despite each of our own mistakes, we are still human. We must love each other as people (Commandment #2). We may not like the decisions that each of us make, but each person is still a child of God. God forgave us while we were yet sinners. He will forgive you for your mistakes and forgive me of mine.

He loves each and every one of us despite our failures. And…He is waiting for you to come home and come back to His direction and seek His Will in your life.

A New Year, A New Commitment?

Every year, people by the millions string out pieces of paper and scratch down “New Year’s Resolutions.” Some of the most popular…

  • Lose Weight
  • Exercise
  • Eat Right
  • Quit Smoking/Drinking/Cursing
  • Be a better friend
  • Stop Procrastinating
  • Save Money, and….
  • Go to Church

So, is there anything wrong with these?  They ALL sound like things we SHOULD do! And there’s websites devoted to almost all of them.  How to eat right, diet, exercise. There’s methods to quit smoking (the patch, and others), organizations to help people stop drinking, financial advisors to help us plan our finances. But do they work?

Around 90% of New Year’s Resolutions are never achieved. Buy why?  There is so much help out there?  I guess it’s the same reason people fail on the last one listed: “Go to Church.”  Think about it – there is an entire book, the BIBLE, that has lasted for centuries that give us the best reasons in the world why going to church is the most important of all of these.

Yet, every year, and every week, in fact every day, people fail at this resolution. Even Christians are failing. We sin, disobey God, ignore His Commandments, blatantly go against Him when we choose worldly desires over His instructions.

So how can we stop this?  It’s the same way you can succeed at all the other New Year’s Resolutions. CONSTANT attention to it.  Experts tell us it takes 30 days to make a new practice a habit.  So start today, read the Bible…every day.  Take just “Five more minutes” out of your day and PRAY, READ, and PRAY again.  Start now. Right Now.  And do it everyday!  If you do that, you won’t have to think about going to church – that part will come naturally.

What are you waiting for?  Open your Bible NOW!

John 21:19-22

 

And after saying this [Jesus] said to him, “Follow me.” Peter turned and saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them, the one who had been reclining at table close to him and had said, “Lord, who is it that is going to betray you?” When Peter saw him, he said to Jesus, “Lord, what about this man?” Jesus said to him, “If it is my will that he remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow me!”

Don’t worry about what OTHERS are doing, we are commanded to FOLLOW GOD!