This post will be controversial I can promise you that. If you want something light or easy to digest please find a different blog or website. Then again no one has been on here for awhile so no worries.
Tonight I was scrolling through some headlines on USA Today and I came across something rather disturbing. It is that many more infants are being born dependent on prescription drugs. You can find the original article here.
I see this and my heart breaks. I was reading elsewhere about the numbers of people killed in car crashes and how it was more than a few wars. The number absent was the number of infants killed at the hands of abortionists. This world is filled with evil and filled with selfishness as a result of our sinful nature. I see these statistics and it makes me sad but it also sobers me to realize the influence satan has had from the beginning. Satan is not all powerful nor can he take away your free will, we give that up pretty easily. However, he has an agenda that agenda is to destroy life. The first part of John 10:10 says that the thief, or satan comes to steal, kill, and destroy. How does he steal? Through homosexual relationships. Please understand I in no way hate them or have a right to judge them, I am merely stating the facts. Life comes through a man and a woman, God designed it that way. A homosexual couple cannot naturally produce life. How does he kill?Through abortion, or the willful termination of an unborn child (we can squabble over what to call the unborn later). Please also understand if any of you reading this have had or considered such a thing, I cannot condemn you, I have never been in that place. I can however speak the truth I know from scripture. How does he destroy? Through sin in general, particularly addiction. As someone who has struggled with addiction, who has family and friends who have struggled with this, and who fights with the power of God behind her, I know addiction is a dark place. He destroys the individuals quality of life, the quality of the lives around them, and those of their children. In the case of prescription drugs and the children born dependent on drugs this shows most clearly. I struggled with something most people would hardly even consider an issue or a sin, but it was against God, myself, and my future husband, who one day I am going to have to tell. My sister struggled through drug addiction, and others in my family have struggled with alcoholism.
The point is we as Christians know the enemy, we know how to fight him, but most of us are too scared to say anything as it may be offensive. It is time to step up and actively start praying against the attacks and influences of satan. It is time to, instead of condemning those who sin, and conveniently forgetting our own, look for ways to love and help them. It is time that we stop being passive, we must rise up in the powerful name of Jesus and fight for the innocent, the broken, and imprisoned. It is time we start living in the victory Christ has already won for us. What are we waiting for?
As a upperclassman college student about to enter finals week, preparing for Graduate Admissions Tests, looking at possibilities for work in the real world, and of course the ever important question that plagues my mind, does that handsome gentleman like me as much as I like him, you might say I am under a little stress. There are also other minor details of things like reciting Romans 1 on Thursday and I only have 50 some odd days to finish sermons because I am going to be speaking at a summer camp. I cannot waste time.
As Christians positivity is incredibly important, I don’t think Christ died for us to be depressed or “in a funk”. Christ died so that we might have life abundantly (John 10:10). Yesterday I realized I needed a major attitude adjustment. I was going to sing in a choir concert and was still a little upset because I do not like singing in choir like I did when I was in High School. You see I have started to lose my hearing so half the time I am not totally sure what is going on in choir. It is terribly frustrating. As ridiculous as it sounds, choir is my most stressful class. I have been sort of upset because my minor in music requires me to be in four semesters of choir and since I have only three left. Now I know you are rolling your eyes at me, I am rolling my eyes at me. It seemed to have escaped my often air filled head that when something becomes difficult that it is time to kick in to overdrive and work ten times harder than before. It is like the piano piece I have recently learned, memorized, and conquered, it was more difficult than any previous piece I’ve worked on and thus it required more diligent work than any other piece. Up until about a year ago I got used to sort of just doing things I was naturally good at and not having to work particularly hard, but those days are over. It is funny how when you buckle down suddenly you are happier.
This brings me to this issue of a positive change in attitude. These are things that come to my mind that seem to make us all a little happier, please add to the list, these are not numbered in order of importance just in order of what I remember. So I make my vows…
1. Determine, before leaving the bedroom in the morning that I will seek to see the good in someone, no matter how scarce.
2. It’s ok to be sad sometimes, heck even to cry, I know this is about being happier, but there is something about crying when it happens that makes things easier to deal with later in life. For me it was the church I go to. It was where my grandparents funerals were held, my grandparents were two of the few people that clearly communicated love to me from an early age. It made me sad every time I went into the church because I did not properly mourn their deaths when they passed. So when something happens, I will be bold enough to be broken and cry.
3. I will trust and rest in the atoning sacrifice Christ made, I will not let my past decide that I am unusable for His kingdom and purpose.
4. Whether I like it or not from now on more coasting through, if I want to be better at anything from Piano to studies, I must work twice as hard. I may not be a prodigy, but it does not mean I cannot be better.
5. I must not compare myself to others, whether in talent, size, or heart. I will always be awkward. Don’t tell me, “It’s only awkward if you make it awkward.” I just made it awkward so there.
6. I will find something new to learn if in my piano playing I go three practice sessions without needing my books, it’s the only way to improve.
7. God, above all else: food, family, friends, the desire for that before mentioned boy.
8. I will every effort to maintain each relationship I have, even if it means apologizing when they are wrong. (Romans 12:18)
These are not new things, all have been said at one time or another to me, but I am stubborn so it takes me a bit longer. Please add the things you practice that allow you to live more happily.
I am a whopping 20 years old and perhaps have a bit too much teenage rebellion inside of me. God has called me to a specific church, and no matter how much I try to rationalize other ministries, regardless of how good, the truth remains I need to be at this particular church. There is only one issue and the reason I am fighting God on it. I hate the church. I love the people individually don’t get me wrong but as a whole the spiritual atmosphere, I hate it. The church in my opinion (which may be prideful and not correct) is either dead or close to it. The people are very loving, but they will not compromise or change in order to reach our community. I have a love hate relationship with my church. I love the individuals, but going to church i a draining affair, at least with the hearing people, Wednesday nights with the Deaf are exhilarating and encouraging. Pray for me friends, pray for endurance and a proper attitude.
I have been writing music for awhile and I want to share it with you. This song was written shortly after the shooting in Connecticut and hearing other tragic stories. In light of the recent tragedies in Boston and Texas, it is time I make the song available. I hope you find encouragement from the song, “So Many”
I have hearing problems not hard of hearing or deaf just having issues. On my long drive home I tend to imagine different scenarios and how they would play out in my head. Maybe you do this then you get to the place and the people TOTALLY don’t follow the script you outlined in your head. Well today I was imagining how things would happen if I were to lose my hearing completely and rely on sign language or writing to communicate with people. Te good news? I already know how to sign for the most part. The bad almost no one in my friends or family knows how to sign, and those who can have a limited vocabulary. I was thinking about it, and it would totally suck that relationships with certain people were cut off. However, it would be a good test to see who is genuine. Then I begin thinking about some of the Deaf people I know, and my church’s “Deaf Ministry”* and my heart began to break. We (at least those of you who share in a relationship with Christ) have the greatest news on earth and this amazing, beautiful community does not know it because we want them to look like us, or talk, or read our lips. We place labels like “hearing impaired” or “handicapped” passing judgement without getting to know the brilliant people. What are the results? Over 95% have never been exposed to the gospel…why? Because we want them to do all the work while we sit in our comfy bubble waiting for them to come. Last I checked the great commission was to “Go into all the world…” (Matthew 28) not to “Wait for the world to learn how to look, act, and talk like we do before telling them the glorious news.” It is glorious news isn’t it? We who are have done many things wrong can find forgiveness and love from an almighty, holy God. Maybe you are saying, “Well, that is all fine and dandy, but I don’t know any Deaf people.” Learn a little sign and see what happens, you may be surprised that you meet a few.
*The reason I have Deaf Ministry in quotations is because it is lacking. We have a few interpreters who had a little sign instruction many years ago and thus interpret Sunday mornings. I used to help with that, but lately I am not because I miss things when I am not looking at the pastor so I have stopped letting the others go ahead.
I recently went to a part of the country where people do not have liberties like they do in other parts. We met lovely women who were oppressed, but if they reached out to freedom the consequences would be terrifying. However, if any of them publicly accepted Christ, there would be no doubt it was sincere. People don’t die for things they aren’t sure about. After all you don’t hear of many agnostics being put to death. That is a joke i hope you find the humor. Anyways, experiencing this and what others face always throws me for a loop when i return to the Bible Belt. I see so many people here who are content to have it as a part of their lives. What does God have to say?
The question I pose is this:
Is our religious freedom a blessing because we can practice without fear, or a curse because we can get away with faking it?
I am yet again surprised by God’s grace and love. Let me explain.
For a long time I have wondered why I am so terrified of so many things, and the light was shed and it wasn’t pretty. It was plain and simple, pride, selfishness, and any number of other things. It was and is quite horrible, the whole reason I do something or don’t do something is because I am looking out for number one… Nearly everything I had ever done in regards to my Christian life, selfishness. I felt incredibly guilty, and rightly so, I am guilty of that and so much more. The next day during what is usually my daily time with God, I didn’t know what to do or to say because I did not want to do something for myself, so I sat there for awhile not really thinking just feeling incredibly awkward. Eventually the silence was broken by that still small voice calling to me. I was guilty and I wanted to hide, but His light was too brilliant, so I listened. To my complete shock He did not condemn, though He had every right to, He did not condone either because He is righteous and my attitude and thoughts were definitely not. Instead He invited, He invited me once again to live a different kind of life. I felt very much like the adulterous woman that Jesus forgave, when He invited her to live a different life (John 8.1-11) I share this with you today because maybe some of you are trapped in something, maybe it is selfishness and pride, maybe pornography, maybe drugs, anything, maybe you are afraid to go before God because you know you are guilty, don’t be afraid to go to Him and be honest before Him. See the life He is inviting you to live today.