Tuesday, May 18, 2010

In the midst of a teaching on being a shepherd, Jesus makes this statement in John 10: The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (v.10)

I had a thought about this passage - when Jesus said that he came to give us life, what was there before he came? If his death gave us life, what was there before his death? By the statements of Jesus, we know that it wasn't life - it was something else.

Let's make this a bit more personal. What did I have before Christ? What did I have before I accepted his death, his substitution, his resurrection and his Lordship in my life? Simply stated: death. Kind of a simple answer and yet the difference between what I had and what I have is profound.

For the first time I can experience life as God designed it!

I had to write that as its own paragraph, because I want you to think about that for a moment. Dwell on it. Understand where you came from (death; or as Paul put it "meaningless existence") and where you are now meaningful existence).

My prayer is that this impacts me and you today as you understand who you are and whose you are.

(BTW, from a macro, worldwide view, if you spend some time in Romans and Galatians, you will have a better clue as to what existed before Christ's death - the law of sin and death. That is a good study to further your understanding of who you are now as a believer in Christ.)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Was listening to a song on the way into work this morning - not even sure who sings it, but the theme of the song was "you are all I need" (the "you" in the song was God). Great thought in principle - very hard to do practically.

I know that it is true that He is all I need; but it sure seems that I run to other things when I am needy. When my emotions are low, I run to my wife, a couple of hours with an old movie, a nap, etc. When I need love, I run to those around me. When I need affirmation, I look to my job, my bank account, my kids, my wife, my fellow employees, my friends (OK, I can keep going here for a while, but you get the point).

Is He all I need? Yes. Is he all I want? Yes. Do I practice this with any degree of success? Well.....

My problem is that in some areas of my life, God is not my default setting. When I face a tough challenge, sure, but in the day to day, grind it out, what is life going to bring to me today world, He is not always my first choice. When life kind of sneaks up on me, when I am not diligent in paying attention to my soul and my relationship with God, I drift to other default positions.

He IS all I need. He IS sufficient to meet my every need. He IS all that I really, really want deep down in my soul. Now if only my hands would follow that all the time............

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Today is mother's day. I believe that this day will forever by etched in my mind because of what my mom went through in 2009. There are some statements and scenes that I cannot get out of my mind.

Perhaps the most poignant is when my sister and I were driving from the airport to the hospital I asked my sister if she was ready for mom to die. She immediately broke down sobbing "no, I'm not; I am not" in a broken canter; trying to breathe in between sobs.

I wasn't ready either.....

The hardest thing that I have ever had to do in my life, I had to do that day: walk into the hospital room and see my mom near death. I remember pleading with God not to take my mom. I have never prayed so hard in my life. God did not take my mom that day. She lost something physical that day, but we didn't lose her: her personality, her memories, her mind, her wisdom, her humor.

Life is a struggle for her physically now and it probably will be for the rest of her life, but I still have my mom.

These things have forever shaped me and my prayer life. I find myself more angry at the affects of sin, more aware that life is short and fragile

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

There are times when I hear verses of scripture that need no commentary - this is one of those. Yes, there is context of a disobedient nation that surrounds these verses, but the principles are still the same.

All that I ask is that you pause and worship the Lord for what He has done for us and what He does for us every day. Thank Him today that through the blood of Jesus, we experience His on-going compassions and mercies.