What to do if someone is drowning & how I am getting ready for a wedding

Drowning

It has been said when rescuing someone from drowning, to approach them from the back.  Because of their panic, if you come at them from the front, they could grab you & pull you down with them. Fear & panic can cause you to think & act unwisely.

As Christians, I think this is the same thing that happens to us sometimes.   We get news that times are a changin’ & we panic.  Bless our hearts.  We start saying things that are not uplifting.  We start acting like we know it all & are sooo much better than what is going on that we forget.  We forget that we are those same sinners that need forgiveness.  Still.  Ya’ll, just because someone is different, than we are, does not give us the right to judge.  We should not spew hate.  Are we not still the same group of people that are supposed to be leading people to Jesus?  Not sending them running the other way.  We, as Christians, have such a terrific opportunity to tell others the truth about what the Bible says about sin.  Let’s not mess it up.  We need to be sure we season our words with grace.  We need to be part of the solution, not part of the problem.  I was reading in Romans 1 about what the God inspired apostle Paul said about sin.  He laid it down pretty simple about the wicked & Godless people:

Romans 1: 26-27

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.(NKJV)

But he didn’t stop there.  He also called out some other sins.

28 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. 29 They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31 they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. 32 Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.(NKJV)

This covers about every sin there is.  He went from one end of the spectrum of envy & murder all the way to being unloving.  Did you notice he mentioned, disobeying parents & gossiping?

gossip

Do you know anyone that’s guilty of that?  Do you know anyone who gossips or stands by & listens to another person gossiping?  Ouch!  That hits close to home.  It’s sin, just like being a homosexual or murderer, according to the passage above.

The scripture goes on to say in Romans 2:

Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge, for in whatever you judge another you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against those who practice such things. And do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God? (NKJV)

The apostle Paul was talking to the church at Rome.  Christians that were passing judgment on those around them for their sins.  He was telling them they should not be judging others, because they too, were sinners.  We are taught the ONLY judgment we can speak of is a righteous judgment.

John 7:24 Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment.”

I read an article the other day written by a person who was an active member of a church.  However, is not now.  He said a secret about a lot of people professing Christianity is that they don’t read their Bibles.  Oh they attend every service, warm their pew, give of their means, & sing loud.  But when they are faced with sin, they start going along with the crowd.  They agree to whatever the Christians are saying.  However, never opening their Bibles to see what God is really saying.

Listen folks, don’t take someone else’s word for what God’s commandments are. Make sure you know.  You are the only one responsible for you.

Philippians 2:12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling;(NKJV)

II Timothy 2:15 Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.(KJV)

Timothy

I hope everybody has been having a good week.  It has been hot here & you know what?  That’s what it’s supposed to be for July in Mississippi.  But we are still just complaining away.  Now don’t that beat all?  At least it will hopefully not be SO hot when my daughter gets married this fall.  I wonder if there is a way to look at the weather, that far in advance?We want some good weather so that everybody will be comfortable for an outside wedding & what have you.  Until next time, I pray you will stay out of the heat.  I will perhaps be sitting under the air conditioner, staying cool, while watching way too many episodes of “Say Yes To The Dress”.  HEY, we have got to do our research here.  And of course I will do all of this while I should be washing clothes.

biscuit love

Credits: Our Daily Bread, patheos, a happy lass, pinterest

 

Advertisements

The cure to Black Friday’s chaos

So, you know I was blogging about Black Friday, not too long ago.  I saw a picture on Facebook that really drove it all home.

When did we become so obsessed with material things, that it’s more important than God?  People will get up in the middle of the night, stand in line, & wait as long as they have to for a deal.  Those same people won’t wake up in time on a Sunday morning to worship God.  We have it all backwards.  People tend to put so much emphasis on what they can buy & possess, that they miss the point all together.  How many people have you seen with a U-Haul behind a hearse?  We can’t take it with us.  However, we will give up our families, our friends, God, or whatever gets in our way, to have worldly objects.

When we are sick, do we depend on a new car to take care of us?  Does it make a difference to our house if we had an awful day?  What about the property that we own?  If we get bad news back from the doctor, can it help us?  All of that may sound silly, but this is where many people put their love & attention. They treat these things sometimes as being more important to them than their family & friends. We need our family & friends.  If you don’t believe it, see if you can get you new big screen t.v. to bring you gas, when your car runs out- on the side of the road.

However, to have loved ones, you have to love others.  If you don’t, you have a long tough way ahead of you.  I love to hear the story about my great father watching a long a funeral procession pass by.  My Dad said to him, “That man had a lot of friends.”  In which his grandfather replied, “ Well, son, he was just a friend to a lot of people.”

Jesus said in, John 15:12  “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

Love for each other is the most important thing in the world.  I pray that we all can show love to others this week.  I am so glad you stopped by & visited with me. It makes me immensely happy!  I have to be going now, because I should be washing clothes….

Side note- Just so you know, I am not bashing all Black Friday shoppers.  The extreme parts of it, well, are just a little unnecessary.

Stumbling block inventory

Finding faults in others is a popular pastime.  Unfortunately, a lot of us find it’s easy to join the fun. Concentrating on the flaws of others can be a great way to feel better about ourselves.  That’s typically, the problem!  Avoiding the faults that need to be fixed in our own lives, not only dampers our spiritual growth, it too gets in the way of God’s work through us. God’s effectiveness through our lives is made better or is hindered by the way we live.

In Romans 14:13 the apostle Paul tells of the character we should have.

Therefore, let us not judge one another, anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way.

Back up in verse 10 he states:

But why do you judge your brother? Or why do you show contempt for your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.

We are all in this together.  Why be so petty about things?

If we want to be authentic & useful for the Lord, we must continually take a stumbling block inventory.  At times stumbling blocks are things that in and of themselves may be real.  Yet in certain contexts, may be inappropriate.  But sin is clearly a stumbling block to others.  Gossip, slander, boasting, bitterness, greed, abuse, anger, selfishness, and revenge all close the hearts of those around us to the message God sends through us.  Just to think, our lives, may be the only Bible some people ever see.  Now, that’s a big responsibility that we have.  To keep ourselves clean & unspotted from the world. (James 1: 27)  You may say, “but you just don’t know how mean this person is or how hurtful they have been to me.” I do know this, there is no problem too big that you & God can’t work out. Let God have His way with people.  In life people will be mean, rude, unfair, gossipy, hurtful, and greedy.  Pray for those people.  Don’t let their hatred consume your heart & make you the same things they are. We must be the bigger person.

In Matthew 5:43-44, Jesus preaching his sermon from the mountain said this:

“You have heard that it was said, You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. v.44 But I say to you, love our enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.” 

Now, that’s a tough pill to swallow!  Pray for someone who has said bad things about me?  Pray for someone who has embarrassed me?  Pray for someone whose selfishness has caused me to hurt?  You may ask,”Why does that person deserve my prayers?”  If you look at it from God’s perspective- these prayers are for your benefit.  For you to keep a heart that’s willing to mention a person who does not deserve God’s graciousness.  Those people are the ones who need it the most.  And it’s hard to keep bitterness locked up in a heart full of prayer.  God does not want us to be angry.  He wants us to love.  And what better way to keep that love in your heart, than to lift up someone in prayer? It’s hard to be selfish or mad when you are asking a blessing over someone who’s wronged you.  Get the picture?  God loves us & does not want us to be someone who lets a situation eat at them.  He wants us praying for each other & not being someone with so much emotional baggage that His work can’t be seen in us.

I Cor 13: 4-5 says thatprov love is kind, does not envy, does not parade itself, is not puffed up, does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil.

We should strive to condition ourselves to be kind, no matter what.  God says in order to love, we must be kind.  In the end, our kindness is what matters the most.  We have to be responsible for what we have done in our lives, how we have acted & treated people, not how they have treated us.  God will have His day with those folks! He even says so –

Romans 12:19…”Vengence is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 

Now, don’t you think God can handle these hard to deal with people better than you?  Of course He can.  A dear friend of mine has said her mother used to say, “Kill them with kindness.”  I think that is a very good lesson.  When someone hurts your feelings, just be kind.  When someone says mean things about you, be kind.  When someone is rude to you, be kind.  That way, they can see God living in you.  That will either turn them toward God, or just make them mad.  Either way, you have done your part by being what God wants you to be- kind.

So, let’s replace our faults with the wonderful ways of Jesus.  This will help others to see our Savior more clearly.

Some of this message was taken from an Our Daily Bread article written by Joe Stowell.  I have so many thoughts about this subject.  Maybe I will write more about it later.  But for now, I have to go because I should be washing clothes………..