Friday, February 24, 2006

In the fire

I was reading on another blog this morning about Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego being thrown in the fiery furnace. And something the blogger said struck a cord in me. Then as I read Daniel 3 something else rang a bell in my mind.

The King just threw these three guys into the furnace, and he's looking in there going "Wait a minute! there are 4 guys down there and 1 looks like the son of gods." Ok I don't want to seem like the kind that begs trouble her way, but... you've just been thrown into a fire so hot that the guys throwing you in were killed, and yet, you're walking around in the fire and there's a 4th person in there with you that looks like the "son of gods" per the kings description, When the king says "come out!" Why would you? You're probably less than 4 ft away from a heavenly being. Wouldn't you want to stay pretty close to that being?

Also as a note to what the blogger I read earlier today said, the fire, was the safest place for them to be. It's where God was. Granted, they were probably pretty nervous about the idea of being thrown into the fire, and we all are when faced with giant sized problems. But it was in the fire that God's presence appeared, it was in the fire that a miracle occurred, it was in the fire that lives were changed.
Maybe we shouldn't be so quick to get out of the fire.

Monday, February 20, 2006

What you say most

I attended a funeral today. It was a solemn occasion, and painful, as I know several of the people this death effects the most. And as I'm sitting here, reflecting on the different thoughts that it invoked in me, this newest one just occurred to me.
How many of you know your pastors very well? Do they know your hobbies? your volunteer work? your real work? your family? Let's face it, pastors are the ones that will be preaching your funeral. So if they don't know you, other than the fact that you show up to church and that you may or may not tithe ;) What will they talk about when you die? The answer is, whatever you talk about the most. The pastor will sit around and talk and comfort your family, gaining valuable stories for their message to your congregating loved ones at the funeral. Those stories will revolve around your passions. Be it children, charities, golfing, or the Atlanta Falcons.
As I sat there listening to story after story of how this great mechanic capably took care of this pastors car, I began thinking about what stories would be told about me at my passing. As I pondered more, I began thinking about what stories are most told about me now. Granted, some of my stories are unique, because I have a knack for getting myself into interesting situations, but even so, they aren't necessarily ones that begin with "She said God wanted her to and..."
EVEN IF I live that way, do I make sure to give God all the credit/glory/blame for the reason I'm doing what I'm doing? so that regardless of what peoples faith, their stories at my passing would all begin with God's Name and His Will?
Even as I write this, I'm considering where God brought me from. And thinking if people only knew the difference in my life from the desperation to the hope, that would be all they would talk about, even years later. Then they'd know, they'd know just as clearly as I do, that nothing good I ever did on this earth was on my own. Because on my own I can't begin to describe my own vile evil. But they'd know it was only God. And if God would bring this about in my life, then people would have a taste, even just a taste of how good God is, and I can think of nothing else that would make my life so entirely worthwhile.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Trusting for the impossible

I've recently been touting the very unpopular belief of trusting in God, come what may. So far it's most popular with those NOT going through a hard time. But I've got several friends that have trusted for healing for a long time and not received it. What to tell them? Let me tell you, not all of them want to hear "keep trusting".

The exciting part is that God's word becomes more clear and open to you as you labor for His Kingdom. Because in my general reading today (reading through the bible in a year, today's selection is Numbers 14 & 15) I noticed two men that were having a much more difficult time than I am.

By Numbers 14 Joshua and Caleb were the only ones coming back from a land that seemed foolish to attack saying "We can take them because God is with us." All the other guys that looked at the land came back saying, "Yes, it's great over there, milk, honey, and just look at these grapes! But we're like ants in their eyes! There is NO way we'd win."

So, obviously, there's a lot of bitter discussion over it, the Israelites are complaining that they're going to die again and Joshua and Caleb get their attention by making this statement:
Numbers 14:6,7,8 &9
6 Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land, tore their clothes 7 and said to the entire Israelite assembly, "The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. 8 If the LORD is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. 9 Only do not rebel against the LORD. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will swallow them up. Their protection is gone, but the LORD is with us. Do not be afraid of them."
Faith filled words I'd say. Next verse? With all the worldly wisdom in the world the Israelites discuss their next move:
Numbers 14:10
10 But the whole assembly talked about stoning them. Then the glory of the LORD appeared at the Tent of Meeting to all the Israelites.
All that story is just to say, trusting God isn't always easy. But getting others to trust in God is very very very very very very hard. It may not come out with the results you wanted. Do you want to know how the story ended though?
In the end, God says:
Numbers 14:28,29,30
28 So tell them, 'As surely as I live, declares the LORD, I will do to you the very things I heard you say: 29 In this desert your bodies will fall—every one of you twenty years old or more who was counted in the census and who has grumbled against me. 30 Not one of you will enter the land I swore with uplifted hand to make your home, except Caleb son of Jephunneh and Joshua son of Nun.
These scriptures meant a lot to me today. And even if you get nothing specific about trusting God from these scriptures, I urge you wholeheartedly, READ HIS WORD. You will receive something. Maybe not every time, the moment you read it. But it will enter into your heart, and God promised it won't return void. Use His word. Read and delight in it. It is a light to your path. And trust me, this is a dark world and you need all the illumination you can get.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

A different kind of warning

Good morning, before you read this post you might want to stop and read the one just before it. Because it will explain what happened to get me where I am. But I was wondering if the warning I supposedly didn't receive, was actually the "I'm doing right, right now". It's when you are doing the right thing that the devil attacks right? He doesn't care too much if you're doing the wrong thing.
In the last 24 hrs, I've been lied about, falsely accused, subtlely threatened with legal action, and.. worst of all, I've caught a cold.
If this is the yardstick by how I can tell if I'm doing God's Will, then well, bring it on.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Unusual Dreams

I had the strangest dream. I was following a guy around, and he was trying to convince the people in this town/village, that someone had been shot by a bullet that came at the guy from the side, over a well (it's a dream folks, it's suppose to sound confusing). But for some reason the specific lady we were talking to at the end of it was saying that the bullet somehow killed the boy by being shot up in the air and the coming straight down. I don't know why, but it was spiritually very important that this guy convince the towns people of the truth, and as he and I sat down to discuss why no one would believe him he said he had to give me a warning from God (now you know why I'm telling you). He said God wants me to know that I'm doing alright right now - It seemed obvious there was a pretty huge "BUT" in there, but I woke up just before the warning.
I hate dreams where I don't understand the meanings. I pray for interpretation, but it doesn't always come. But more than all that, I certainly hate a dream where someone says God wants to warn you that you... - and then you wake. That's just awful.
Just sharing.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Finding Life

Proverbs 8:35 says "For whoever finds Me, finds life and receives favor from the Lord."

What is your daily habit? Do you read the bible before breakfast? do you pray for 30 minutes before bed? do you attend bible studies and 3 services a week? Do you do this because it is your daily habit?

I was reading about how someone was feeling guilty about not reading their bible this week. God doesn't care if you read your bible 7 days a week because it's the right thing to do. He tells you to study His word so that you won't sin, because when you find Him you find Life, and the favor of God. He tells you to seek him. Not for justification through the law, but because through those things we receive a great benefit.

You don't eat, drink, or sleep because it is a habit. You do it because it is life. But God's word teaches you can't LIVE by bread alone. But by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. We can 'live' by sustaining ourselves on God's word. Even if it means a different kind of 'life'. Which bread are you hungry for today?


A couple of paragraphs, from one of my favorite blogs.

I want so badly for us to see everything as it relates to God and His purposes in the world. I long for us to be a generation that lives radically (or, when Scripture is allowed to be the standard, normally). I am fully convinced that God's jealous desire for our hearts is that they be fully devoted to Him, and that that devotion be evident in the way we study and date and listen to chapel messages and talk about cafeteria food and look at ourselves in the mirror in the morning; in the way we talk about others and spend our leisure time and read assigned books and write papers and talk to our parents and view creation; in the way we drive and sleep and shop and blog and surf the internet and choose what online news articles to click on and read.
I want our nothing-held-back devotion (if we really have that kind of devotion) to be obvious in every last detail of life: how we dress when we go to the beach, what kind of movies we'll watch, what kind of jokes we'll laugh at, what kind of future plans we'll dream about, how often we'll go to Starbuck's or the mall or the movie theater, who our heroes will be (not our stated heroes but the heroes of our hearts), and what we'll talk about when we can talk about anything we want. I just want us to be God-centered.

The Will of God

I can't tell you how wonderful it is to go to church and hear a great message. It is strengthening, and very powerful. Mostly, it is always, always life-changing.
Our pastor yesterday told a story:
This young boy had done something terribly wrong, and was driven to his house by the principal. For some reason he felt terribly confident that his mother was going to give the principal a tongue lashing for even trying to suggest that her son would do something wrong. Despite the fact that HE had done wrong, he expected the principal to be yelled at. They arrive at the house and the mom walked out the door. The principal wasn't even given a chance to say a word. The mother came up to him, put her hands on her hips and said "Whatever he's done, you have my permission to punish him not ONCE, but twice, and he'll be punished again when you're done with him."

That was the end of his story, but then he expounded on it. The mothers presence, he said, brought to light her will for her son. And her will wasn't what the boy wanted, but what he needed.
He equated it to God's will, and how we won't find God's will until we get in His presence, and then He'll make it known. And it might not be what you want! But it will be what you need. And it will be the BEST thing for you.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Another fun test

You Are 27 Years Old

Under 12: You are a kid at heart. You still have an optimistic life view - and you look at the world with awe.

13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what's to come... love, work, and new experiences.

30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You've had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!

40+: You are a mature adult. You've been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.

What do you live for?

What do you live for?
Don't let yourself answer before thinking.
Honestly, what motivates you?
What gets you through a hard day?
What do you look forward to?
What sorts of things do you count down for?
What do you hope in?

Thursday, February 09, 2006

All things are possible

I'm stuck on something so despite the fact that I don't agree with my main commenters all the time. I'm asking their opinion on something.
I'm a very technical person, and more than ANYTHING, I want God's will to be done in any situation I encounter. SO, when I pray I always say, "here's what I want, but if you want something else, well, do it instead" And I'm wondering if while on the surface that 'might' look like a good prayer, if maybe that isn't the right way to go about it.
People didn't come up to Jesus on the streets and say Heal me! but, um, if that isn't Your will, Ok, I don't mind staying sick/blind/deaf/possessed. They just said Here's what I want to happen.
And I'm wondering if I might should be taking that approach as well. If I'm in a situation that has me wanting a particular outcome, I wonder if I might should be just telling God ok.. here's how I want this to turn out. I don't remember too many people praying for God's will in the Bible. Hannah wanted something that was pretty life-changing and God granted it to her.
So, is it that sometimes you just need to press through insisting on what you want? Or, would praying God's will for your life do the exact same thing?
That's the thing that always bothered me about prayer. Here's God, the Almighty Creator of the universe. Creator of you and me as well. And here we are telling Him how we want things done. Prayers for healing, finances, and restoration are all well and good. But wouldn't praying God's will over whatever it is be better?
Or should you just pick what you desire and press through? Ok people, comment on this one would you? I'd like more opinions.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


A small update, I finally added on the new links to the blogs that I visit almost daily. Take a moment to visit them, I hope you'll enjoy them.

A hard lesson

You get in the middle of a problem, and you've tried everything you know to do so you finally turn to a trusted adviser and ask what you should do, and all they say is 'Pray'. Don't you just hate that? You want to do more, you have to ACT, and all they say is "pray". I believe in the power of prayer, but sheesh, I know my actions bring immediate results. None of this waiting around. The only problem with those immediate results is that they aren't always the results I was looking for. Sometimes they just put me in a worse situation, or do nothing - making my efforts vain.
I was looking up some scriptures for the post earlier and I found one that didn't seem to fit and so I moved on. But as I'm sitting here typing this out I was thinking more about that scripture. It's the one in Ephesians 6 about putting on the armor of God. I've always liked verse 13 that says "Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. " But then I decided it didn't fit what I was trying to say. But now I've changed my mind.
Imagine if you would, you've just put on a helmet, a breastplate, special war boots, you've got a sword and shield. Now ok. You're ready for war right??? Ok.
Now before you get arrogant and try to tell me you've done this so you can wrestle against the principalities mentioned in verse 12 "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places" Let me remind you again exactly what the bible says we're doing all this for: that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand . That's right, we're doing this to be able to stand. That's how powerful the enemy is. But, it seems like it's not much of a battle if we're all dressed up in our war clothes and just standing around right? Wait, because the next verses tell us our battle plan, and I hate to tell you, but you're probably not going to like it at all!
18Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;
19And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,

There's your battle plan fellow believers. We're standing there, in all this glorious armor, praying with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching with all perseverance and supplication for all saints; hoping that utterance may be given unto us, that we may open our mouths boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel.
If this is the battle plan laid down from the Commander in Chief, our Leader, and THE Great Warrior, what kind of soldiers are we to not follow His commands all because we feel the need to do more?

***You're so vain, you probably think this post is about you*** ;)

Monday, February 06, 2006

This Walk

I was thinking just recently about my relationship with God. The up's, and the down's, and some of the strange stuff He's done for me. After a long hard morning I began thinking about the changes.

I was driving down the road the other morning on the outskirts of town. There were buildings, but not that many, and it was darker. But as I kept driving I got into the city, there were street lights, and restaurants, gas stations and a few more cars. I kept on driving and I left the city and I was headed to a nearby town. The next town was close, so there were scattered buildings all along the way, but once I went through the small city, there was vast nothingness for about 10 miles. The scenery changes were interesting to look at. But, if I was unprepared, then 10 miles without a gas station could of made a world of difference to me.

It was on this drive, that I realized what the name of my blog really meant to me. "This Walk". The scenery is always changing in this walk with God. Some days you feel Him as though he were right next to you. The worship and adoration is pouring from your heart and literally "every day with Jesus, is sweeter than the day before". Then the scenery changes, and He's no longer showing you a revelation of who He is, but who YOU are. Showing you a sinful side of yourself that you weren't aware of, and requiring change of you. But then, as you and God begin working on the sins of pride or selfishness that still stain your actions, you come to a city again. A city where God shines His lights all around you, and your change comes from the lights that are so bright that they shine on every darkened spot within you. Purifying you. And then, before you head out of that city, you stop to fill up with the Holy Spirit. The cost of these fill-ups get higher and higher every day, not because of the economy, but because each time the Holy Spirit requires you to give up more and more of yourself, to be used by the Master.
Then you're ready to go on, ready for the 10 miles of barren land where it's dark, and it seems like you're alone.
The scenery in our "Walk" is always changing. But there is one constant and that is Christ. And our hope? The glorious city that awaits us at the end of our journey.
Then we'll be home.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

A quote

I love quotes. Little snippets of wisdom that someone was fortunate enough to say that someone else was attentive enough to pass along to others so that it would officially become a 'quote'. Here's the quote that was passed along to me today.
"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not actrightly because we have virtue or excellence, but rather we have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do.Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." -- Aristotle

What's your habit?

Friday, February 03, 2006

My Rebuttal

I really really enjoyed the response I got on yesterdays blog. I love hearing different opinions, even if I don't agree with them all.
So, I will rebut in a post, rather than just continuously commenting with you all. Please keep the comments flowing.
In response to the comments I need to state a couple of things. The first being, the very idea that things become no longer sinful because of the fact that it's more 'accepted' here on earth, is NOT valid I believe. If God says it's a sin, it's a sin. He doesn't run His Heavens by democracy. We don't get to decide what is sin and what is 'common'. My propaganda is hopefully lined up with God's propaganda.
Next, I fully agree with common law marriage. Looking online, in each state that accepts common law marriage there is an agreement of marriage. Common law marriage is NOT the same as some guy moving in with his girlfriend. Do we all agree with that?
And the last main thing I want to include is...
Look at the title of my page. "This Walk" Ephesians 2:10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
I'm not preaching to sinners, and I don't want to actually spend time preaching against sin. Though I am wholeheartedly against it. I want to encourage anyone reading my blog to walk in good works. If you're doing that, then obviously you're trying to abstain from sin. I'm not trying to say you're going to hell if you commit a sin (any sin) either. I want you to walk in good works.
God gives His opinion in His word. But either way, I'm not talking about the sin today, I'm talking about walking in GOOD WORKS.
I want the best for all of you. I want you to grow in the Spirit, walking according to the works of the Spirit rather than the flesh. As you make the right decisions, and die to your own desires and wants, and begin seeking after His Will for your life, you'll notice a change in your life. And I want you all to see that, to feel it and walk in it daily, because that change is joy and peace to you.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Am I missing something?

Ok, this might stir up some trouble. I hope not, but I'm noticing more and more that I seem to be alone in my opinion on the subject, so... if trouble comes I won't be too surprised.

Since WHEN did living together, and sleeping together outside of the bonds of marriage become ok? When did it become sinless to move in with your 'current' girlfriend and fornicate?
I had a young man in the church I attend come up to me. As we were discussing his job situation he mentioned that he's trying to decide if he should move in with his girlfriend or just keep living with his mom. There didn't seem to be a general idea that Hey... maybe the Christians around me won't cooperate with me moving into a lifestyle of sin. It just appeared to be the simple idea that "everyone does it", so it can't be bad.

I can 100% understand why the world does whatever it good and well pleases, but how is it that Christians resolve in their minds that it's ok?
I spend last Saturday debating with my brother and dad about churches standards. Namely, I believe my dad's church has man-made standards that seek to keep it's people in bondage to the law, rather than letting them walk solely in the grace and mercy of God. And it always comes back to my dad claiming that we don't believe in a standard at all. And that isn't true either. I believe in standards, and I think following those standards, to keep sin from creeping in are VERY important for believers today. I especially object to following only those standards that don't interfere with your daily life!

Ok, I'm not really ranting without purpose. I want to encourage you. These standards are for us joy. The standards God outlines through Paul are GOOD for us. Following them brings peace, and joy. And they're not there to show you're holier than someone else, or anything like that. They're for your benefit. All you have to do - this is the real key - is trust God with your life. When you trust God and His infinite wisdom and follow His rules and guidelines for your life, you'll find joy and peace, you'll also find that it leads your life in a direction that is truly worthwhile, and safe for you. It is for the best. God's way is best.

Beating the odds!

Good morning everyone -
As some of you may of noticed, the month of February has arrived. Which means..................................................................................................
The January contest is over and we've got a winner. The craziest part of it all is, this winner defeated many odds. I had 9 entries from J.w. Poteet ii, 8 entries from Dazzlers Domain, and 2 from Nate over at Eight Strings. I spent the month assuming I'd be handing either my brother (Jw) or Daz this awesome book, only to discover yesterday morning that somehow Nate won!
So Congratulations Nate! I'm very pleased to send you Dream Giver. It's a truly amazing book that I've enjoyed quite a bit. I hope you enjoy it as well.
Thanks to everyone that entered, I appreciate it and encourage you to keep commenting. And I will blog on!