THE VOW

You may have heard this one……

Paddy is late for an unimportant meeting at the pub and can’t find a park anywhere. He cries out “God, if you find me a park, I promise that I will go to church this Sunday”. Miraculously, a space opens up in front of him, which brings him such great joy, so he quickly cries back out to God, “don’t worry I’ve found one”

God does so much for us because he loves us, understands us, cares for us and PROMISES so much to us

How many times have we made promises or vows to him but don’t go through with them? We go through troubles, harm, attack etc and God is just so concerned about getting you to a place of safety, refuge, firm foundation and security in and with him. Check out this verse from Psalm 66:12, it says 

“You let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.”

Before we get to this secure place of abundance we often promise God so much don’t we? This Psalm goes on to read

I will come to your temple with burnt offerings and fulfill my vows to you — vows my lips promised and my mouth spoke when I was in trouble. I will sacrifice fat animals to you and an offering of rams; I will offer bulls and goats”

Is God interested in your bulls or goats or tithe or offerings? Well Proverbs 21:3 says,  “To do what is right and just is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.”

Our famous salvation verse is John 3:16 and in it we promise to “believe” in him, which in the Greek is pisteuo meaning to put your faith in, entrust to, commit to. We promised, we gave a vow, to commt to him. How is that commitment going?

If we buy a puppy, or get married, or have kids etc are we commited to them once a week? Obviously not. We give it our all. Its not easy I know. Marriages are both testing and rewarding. Puppies grow up to tear your house apart, bark at you, cost you money, pee on your floor and laze around the house (or is that the kids)

What vows have you made God? Lets honour our Father with seeing them through; not out of duty but out of awe, reverence, respect and love. Ecclesiastes 5:4 tells us When you make a vow to God, do not delay to fulfill it. He has no pleasure in fools; fulfill your vow

Lets do what is right, and what is just.

He’s fulfilled his end by giving us his Son (and eternal life). Our turn now……

THATS PERFECT

You know, there are a few scriptures that can make you scratch your head. One such verse is Matthew 5:48 “Be perfect, just as your Heavenly Father is perfect”. Sort makes you go “yeah right” doesnt it.

Winston Churchill once said, “to improve is to change. To be perfect is to change often” My dad once said that if we keep doing the same things then will keep getting the same result. Great wisdom from a couple of great men.

Jesus spoke about perfection again later in Matthew – check out 19:21 where he says to a chap “if you want to be perfect then go sell your possesions and give to the poor, and you will have treasures in heaven, THEN come and follow me.” The guy didnt follow him by the way, he just couldn’t change, the cost was too high

In Hebrews 11 it talks about a bunch of super faithful people who didnt get what was promised. They didnt get it because God had something even BETTER for them. But they had to wait for others to do their work first hundred’s, even thousands, of years later, so that perfection may be achieved.

So go on; aim for perfection. If that means changing a few things, then for Gods sake change. If that means giving up some stuff that may trip you up from getting into heaven, then for Gods sake (and yours) give it up! In the end its only loose change.

Quit the Habit

A quote from James Baldwin, the great 20th-century writer….

“I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain.”

Hate is terrible
It leads nowhere except to death
Living, but dead

Hate comes from the word miseo where we get the word misery
Hate leads to bitterness. And they say that bitterness is “like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die”

Jesus said Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them.

If you are suffering from hatred or bitterness then I’m truly sorry for you
I’m so sorry that someone, or something, has hurt you so much

I know how you feel. I really do. And as I found out, you have two choices:
Remain as you are
Forgive and pray for them

The first option is lose/lose. You remain trapped and the person who hurt you continues to win

Try forgiving them. Pray for them. It is so hard but please try. I know God will honour you and help you.

Jesus said he will forgive us ALL our sins and give us eternal life with him. He also said that if we can’t forgive then he can’t forgive us

Take the trade.
Jesus is prepared to take it all……Every last rotten bit of it

If you would like help or prayer please don’t hesitate to contact me.

I’m here for you.

 

Give Us Light

Studies show that in the media, bad news outweighs good news by 17:1 – that’s 95% folks
– Some may say that we have no control over the media.

Studies show that schooling is getting harder for our kids.
Bibles In Schools or Christian education is out. Bullying is increasing. Drugs are more prolific.
Sex is common place and the kids are doing younger.
– Some may say that we have no control over the way school is run.

The 2013 Readers Digest Most Trusted People & Profession lists came out and one Christian made it – he came 100th!
And the “clergy” in general came 34th (between shop assistants and cleaners)
– some may say we have no way of controlling how Readers Digest put the survey together

Some may say that the world is just getting darker.

Matthew 25 tells us about 10 virgins with lamps.
5 were wise
5 were not

5 had oil and shone
5 ran out

So my reckoning is that half who read this will care and change things.
Sadly the other half will ignore this, get offended, mock this, or simply not care

Some may say its not their problem, they’re too busy, its all too hard
Some may say that I shouldnt make them feel guilty (don’t get me started on that one)

We will ALL have to give an account to Jesus when we die
What will some say then?

If the world is getting darker…..
….then it’s because our light is going out