RSS

Monthly Archives: June 2012

“Get Up!”

In Joshua chapter 6 we read of a powerful tale. We read of a faith building moment for the nation of Israel. God told Joshua to command the people to march around Jericho for a certain number of times/days and that when they completed their task and the trumpets blew, and the people shouted, that the city would be delivered to them for them to conquer.

God also told them, not to take anything that they found in the city and keep it for themselves. But, one man named Achan disobeyed. We read in chapter 7 that because of Achan’s disobedience Israel lost a battle.

We find in chapter 7 Joshua as he is feeling defeated after a loss in battle, rubbing dirt on his head, falling to the ground and crying out to God. Let me ask you, have you ever been there? No, I’m not talking about being outside of Ai after the battle of Jericho. I am referring to that bad place mentally, spiritually, and emotionally when you are feeling defeated because you have allowed sin to take in your home, or maybe even in your life?

I love what God’s response is to Joshua! What does God say? “Get up!” He cuts through all that is surrounding Joshua, and charges him to get up, purify himself, and the nation of Israel because they still had work to do!

If you find yourself feeling down and out, because of sin, consider this your wake up call, “Get up!” purify yourself, your household, and let’s get back on the path to heaven!

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Confession Time!

20120626-225041.jpg

I want you to be in heaven. I want my children to be in heaven. I want every one to be in heaven! I understand based on the teachings of Christ, that this will not be the case (Matthew 7:13-14) but, it is my goal to continually be evaluating my walk with God, and challenging myself to live more like Jesus, and to make sure I am on the path to heaven. I simply want to share with you some of my recent personal thoughts.

Jesus reveals one very important piece of information as to how you and I can obtain our ultimate goal.

Matthew 10:32-33- Every one therefore who shall confess me before men, him will I also confess before my Father who is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father who is in heaven.

Jesus says that if you confess Him before others, He will confess YOU before the heavenly Father! Earlier in the Matthew 10 passage, Jesus was telling His disciples that they were going to be persecuted for what they preach, and right after saying these things, He said

“What I tell you in the dark, say in the light, and what you hear whispered, proclaim on the housetops.”

I’m afraid many times we are great at confessing in private. But, not so good, when in public, when around our peers, when on the job, when… Charles Hodge once said, “confessing Jesus is a daily activity and obligation”

How do I confess Jesus? I’m glad you asked 🙂

1. You confess Jesus by talking about Him.

Fishermen talk about fishing, golfers about golf, football players about football, hunters about hunting, farmers about farming… Christians talk about fishing, hunting golf, football, farming… not enough about Jesus.

I have often been troubled by this fact. Not just as I look at the lives of others, but, as I honestly examine myself. Why do I not talk about Jesus more than I do? Why is it easier for me to talk to my church family about my sooners than it is for me to talk about my savior? I believe Jesus has the answer for me/us.

Matthew 12;34- “…for out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.”
I am convinced that when we are struggling to talk about Jesus, it is because Jesus is not firmly seated in our hearts.

2. You confess Jesus by living a life of purity.

It breaks my heart that you have to be around “the world” . Because the world out there is tough. We live in a corrupt world, I promise you, if you live a life of purity, you will stand out

Phil 3:20- .But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Meaning, we not only belong to heaven, but we live as aliens while here on earth.

1. We don’t listen to the same music
2. We don’t watch the same tv shows
3. We don’t wear the same clothes
4. We don’t update the same status’s
5. We don’t have the same goals
6. We don’t have the same language.

The world says “if you follow all of the rules, you miss all of the fun.”— just a little sin is ok. Jesus says–
Matthew 5:8- “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God”

The word that is used here for pure literally means- “to be clean, innocent, blameless, unstained by the guilt of anything”

What are you confessing by the purity in your life? Confessing that you believe in Jesus, or confessing that He is not that important to you.

3. You confess Jesus by changing your life!

When we think of “confess” we think of just simply saying “yes” when we are asked if we believe that Jesus is the Son of God

This is Vitally important! Matthew 16: Jesus is going about from place to place, then He just stops and asks His disciples… who do people say that I am? And they all gave Him various answers.. some say that you are a prophet, some say you are, John the Baptist, Elijah, Prophets. Then Jesus said… Who do YOU say that I am? And Peter replied you are the Christ, the son of the living God! Jesus praised Peter for this response.

But I must tell you, just saying those words, does not mean a thing.

I wonder how often Christ looks at me and says “Troy, who do you think that I am?” and when I say, you are the Son of God. He wonders, why aren’t you living like it? You see, if we believe Jesus is the Son of God, we will change our lives.

Brenan Manning was quoted as saying “The greatest leading cause of atheism in the world today, is Christians, who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, then walk out the door, and deny him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds, unbelievable.”

Let me ask you… Are you proclaiming Christ? Or are you creating doubt in Christ?

How could anyone believe that there is a loving savior named Jesus Christ, if you and I claim His name, yet go on with our lives like nothing has changed?

In Mark 5 we read of the account of a demon possesed man who identifies himself as “legion”. He was a strong man, a violent man, a wild man. He was someone that everyone was afraid of, then something happened, something life changing, he met Jesus.

Jesus cast out the demons, tried to send him on his way, but this formerly possessed man begged Jesus to let him accompany Him (Wouldn’t you?)

But then we see the rest of the story in v. 20

Mark 5:20- And he went away and began to proclaim in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him, and everyone marveled.

Let me ask you, why did everyone marvel? Sadly, I do not believe it was because of what he said. Think about it, many men before and after have stood before a large crowd and preached and the people…. sadly, many times, do not “marvel.” It is my belief that the reason for the people standing in amazement, is because there was a man that used to terrorize their area, and now he is a preacher?!?

He changed his life! He got attention of the people, it allowed him to further the message of Christ. The question is not, have you confessed? The question is…

Are you confessing Christ each day with your life?

So that one day… One beautiful day, Jesus will look at the Father, point to you and say.. He is one of mine…

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

“What Impression Are You Making Today?”

It was Friday morning, the last day of a week long church camp. I rolled out of my bunk convinced that someone had traded out my mattress for a bag of rocks while I was sleeping. Went about my normal routine, took care of the hygiene stuff, and got my lawn chair out and began to study a little from God’s Word. The campers began to wake up, groaning, and tired (like I said, it was Friday!) I hurried them down to the flag pole for our morning devotional, trying to energize them for the day, which was really hard since I felt zero energy on this particular morning.

The cabin of boys assigned to lead the Devo began, we sang through a few familiar songs, listened to a scripture being read, bowed our heads for a prayer, then, it happened. Something that woke me from my slumber. The boy giving the devotional thought began to tell a story about someone he looked up too, someone he gained inspiration from, then began to tell about how this mystery man had given a lesson 6 years ago that he would never forget, then he informed the camp, that the “mystery man” was me… WOW!

2 thoughts immediately popped in my head.

#1. He needs better role models.
#2. I didn’t even remember the lesson that he remembered me giving!

As he went on, the thoughts began to come back to me, and I did remember the lesson. But, it had been far removed from my memory.

What is the point?

The point is this, you truly never know when someone is watching, listening, observing, admiring, taking notes, and modeling their lives after yours! This is not a post to brag on myself (anyone who knows me, knows that) this is simply a reminder, that we need to forever have the same thought as Paul when he wrote:

1 Thessalonians 4:1 and urged Christians to “excel still more”

And 1 Corinthians 11:1: when he reminded us that we need to be living lives so that we can say to our children, friends, family, anyone who is around us “walk, talk, act, like me, because I am living like Jesus!”

Shine for Him today!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 22, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

 
%d bloggers like this: