Tag Archives: Jesus Words

If We Could See…

We all wear masks. Masks that tell others we are “ok” when we really aren’t. In public most of us pretend we have it together, all is well, but if we could see what others struggle with it would change how we interact with each other.
If we could see that a friend is insecure how would we treat them?
If we could see that a neighbor is afraid what would we do?
If we could see that a co-worker is depressed what would you say?
If we could see what’s really going on with each other it would change everything……but we can’t. We all wear masks to make the world think we are “ok”, but imagine how our relationships would change if we could see what’s really going on in a life? It would change everything!
What’s fascinating to me is that Jesus did see. He heard the unspoken words, he knew the unheard thoughts, he knew. And because he knew he dealt with people in a merciful and gracious way. He loved them. Here are his words for us, profound words for us who can’t see what the other person is going through, but if we could see this is what we would do….
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.””
So, here are your instructions for the day as you encounter the host of fallen mankind that will make your day crazy- be merciful, don’t judge, don’t condemn, forgive, and give. These are Jesus’ words to us because we can’t see….

 

Visit Mike at Finishing Well.

I Don’t Like Storms

I know storms come into our lives. We can’t escape them. It’s part of being human. The storms of a family crisis, a death, a sickness, financial problems, relationship issues, etc.

The big problem for me is that often I don’t see the storm coming and find I’m in it before I can prepare. Of course that’s the way it always is anyway…who sees a storm before it hits? Most of the time we seem to be “flying blind” when we find we are in the middle of a big storm!

But really, who can be ready for a storm? Who can prepare for the crisis of life? Jesus said we can prepare. He told an amazing story in the gospel of Matthew…

Mat 7:24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock.
Mat 7:25 “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock.
Mat 7:26 “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.
Mat 7:27 “The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell–and great was its fall.” 

It’s an amazing story because Jesus said that storm preparation is simply this- hearing HIS words and acting on them. That’s all you need to get ready! We try to prepare by stocking food, getting flashlights ready, buying batteries, and a hundred other things. Many of you made these preparations in anticipation of the Y2K “disaster.” But Jesus gave a completely different course of action to prepare for a storm. His disaster preparation course is this- listen to him, and do what he says! That’s it.

What a bold statement! All I need for life and godliness is to listen to Jesus words and act on them. That reality still amazes me, still challenges me, still inspires me, and still humbles me because I forget it so easily.

 

Visit Mike at Finishing Well.

Public vs. Private

This morning I read an article by an atheist writer. I like to read his thoughts because he makes me think. Of course I have to sort through the anger, harsh words and bitterness that comes from his past, but he has a lot to say. This morning his topic was public prayer. His arguments were compelling to argue that we should not be busy about public prayer, but pray privately. So, I began to think about the broader picture. What about me should be public? What should be private? Should all of my life be lived for the public square or should some of my life of faith be private for only God to see?

Those questions began to rumble about in me this morning after a time of rest from the long trip to Kenya and back. We all live in cultures where we become numb to the cultural nuances of our faith lived in a society. Not everything we believe is correct. Not everything we do is right, so how should I live? What about me should be private? What should the world see? Continue reading Public vs. Private

Thankful

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

“It takes a lifetime to just begin to understand the truth. It’s a long journey, and one that is filled with adventure. To not go is to become mostly bored, and resigned to finding entertainment as stimulus to ease the soul ache.” — D.J. Chuang

 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

They feared the Lord and….


I read this passage this morning and have been thinking about it all day. The one word that got the nation of Israel in trouble was the word “and.” It struck me that not much has changed in nearly 3,000 years. We still have our “and” to deal with. Here’s the verse that caught my attention and makes me think about my own life,

2 Kings 17:33They feared the LORD and served their own gods according to the custom of the nations from among whom they had been carried away into exile.

The “and” always gets us in trouble, doesn’t it? Here are a few examples of how much trouble this can cause us:
-We love God AND our stuff. From experience I will tell you that God won’t allow that “and” to remain. The creator will not compete with his creation.
-We fear the Lord AND man. Fear of man will quickly take our focus off of God.
-We serve God AND money. As you know from Jesus’ words this will not work.
So I wonder. How much of my life is complicated and compromised by “and?”

What are you thankful for?

It’s Thanksgiving week and an opportunity to thank God for his care, provision and love. We have so much to thank him for…not only what he has given, but also what he has not given.
When we have so much we forget how blessed we really are. So, what are you thankful for? May I start?
I’m thankful for God’s care. We are so richly blessed! I’m thankful for a place to live, a job I love, a family that is amazing, friends that care about me and health.
There is so much more….so much we take for granted, but let me start with that short list and I will add to it as we go through the week. So, what are you thankful for?