Tuesday, January 27, 2015

His Word Is Enough

What is your view of Scripture? Do you believe every word is inspired by God? Do you question somethings? Does it really matter?

These are very important questions to ponder. Your view of Scripture whether high or low is going to dictate how you live. It will dictate if you believe what God says is true. It will dictate if you believe every wind of doctrine. It will dictate when trials come if you cling to Christ or to the world.

If you have a low view of the Word, you will have a low view of God. If you have a high view of the Word, you will have a high view of God. 

God’s word is unchanging. When we open the pages of Scripture, the voice of God is speaking to us. When we are lonely, His word gives us comfort. When we are scared, He says, “Fear not for I am with you.” When we are angry, He tells us to let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you.  When we ask Him to teach us how to love, He tells us love is patient and kind. He tells us fearing Him is the beginning of wisdom. 

His Word has given us everything we need to live a godly life. He has given us everything we need to walk humbly with Him. He has given us everything we need to point someone to Christ.

His Word is sufficient. If we believe this, we won’t be attracted to the views of the world because our feet stand on the rock. 

Yes, we can discuss translations and there are many which is good and bad. It is good because His Word is available to anyone who needs it in an easy to-understand, accurate translation. It is bad because it can create controversy and can split the church and ruin relationships.

So which is the best?

I think the authors from http://www.gotquestions.org/Bible-translations.html give a good answer. 

An author said a good technique to use is have a set of Scripture verses you know well, and look those verses up in a translation you are unsure of. This way you can determine if the particle Bible translation is accurate. For example, the deity of Christ (John 1:1,14; 8:58; 10:30; Titus 2:13)

I think we can stand with confidence that God’s Word is true and He will accomplish His purposes through it. (Isaiah 55:11; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; Hebrews 4:2)

When I went through my mammogram scare, I clung to what I know is true of my Lord. And I will always cling even when I’m scared. As Peter had said, and I'm paraphrasing, "Where else can I go you have the words to eternal life."

Friends, when we doubt His Word we begin to slide down a slippery slope. The moment we doubt we can turn to other things that appeal to our souls. The moment we doubt we say the Lord isn’t enough.

May we share this truth with love and gentleness to the world. May we point them to the only one who can save them. And may we live lives that show our trust and loyalty to God’s Word. 

He is all we need.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

So My Third Grader Heard. . .

Disclaimer: This post isn't really a mom thing. :)

A couple of weeks ago my third grader heard the F word at school. One of the kids didn't know what the F word meant so the one girl blurted it out.

My girls go to a Christian school so I'm never under the impression they are immune to worldly things. Kids are kids and say and do things that can be inappropriate at times.

I had three options: 1) Freak out, 2) ignore it, or 3) deal with it in calm matter.

I chose three by God's grace. I asked her if she knew what the word meant and she told me no. Phew! 

I told her that it is a word but it is used in a bad way and it's not one you want to use. It is offensive. 

She was fine with that, then moved on to the next topic. I love that kid! 

I always want me kids to come to me and tell me anything. After fifth grade, I told my parents  nothing. I kept everything to myself and they knew only what I wanted to share. I learned to be good at avoiding topics and keeping silent. I never did anything wrong per se but I didn't reveal some things until later on in life. 

I don't want my kids to be that way. I want them to share their joys and sorrows. I want them to know that they can come to us with anything. They should never have to be afraid of being attacked, ridiculed, or made to feel like an idiot. Again, I don't do this perfectly. The Lord is teaching me to react less and listen more and I'm thankful I'm growing in that area. 

I want to be purposeful about sharing Christ to my kids. My biggest fear is that they will grow numb to the gospel because they hear it all the time. That their hearts will harden and they will reject Christ. But the Lord always reminds me of this one thing. I can't save them and He calls be to be faithful.

And this doesn't just have to be about kids. It goes across the board. It can be with a husband, child, friend, parent, etc. God has called us in different areas of life and He wants us to grow and look to Him on a daily basis. 

Friends, let us be faithful in whatever area has us.  May we remember we can't do it on our own. We can only do through Christ. This way He gets the glory. 

Parenting isn't easy. I have no idea what I'm doing but by God's grace He shows me through my failures and triumphs how to walk with Him and how to love my kids they way He wants me to.

I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. Psalm 121:1

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Please, Forgive Me

"What's it like being raised in a Christian home?"

This was the question one of the women asked in our preschool group a few years ago. Many of the women in the group, including myself, were first generation Christians and wanted to know what it was like. They wanted insight.

The mother's who were raised in a Christian home didn't really know how to answer. They said things such as: our siblings fought, our parents got angry, we yelled, we were disrespectful to parents, we lied, and did other things.

They one thing that they all agreed on was their parents pointed them to Christ. Were there parents perfect? No, but they pointed them to the one who is.

But one mom said something that has always stuck with me. She said, "Whenever my mom got angry or frustrated with us, she would always ask us to forgive her."

As parents, friends, kids, etc we can let pride rule in our hearts and not humility. We can puff out our chests and justify our actions. Pat ourselves on the back because we are right and the other person is wrong.

This is hard for me. I wasn't raised in a home where people said they were sorry so I struggle with asking my kids or husband to forgive me when I have sinned against them. As a parent, I'm the authority I don't need to. As a wife, I'm just right even if I'm wrong. :)

Oh, Pride, how I loathe you. This isn't how the Lord wants me to act. God is clothed in splendor and majesty and he wants me to clothe myself in humility. And I want to show my children Christ. I want them to love the one I love. I want my husband to see Christ in me. And one of the ways of living out the gospel is asking for forgiveness.

When we ask someone to forgive us, it can melt a hard heart. It can save marriages and friendships. It can draw people closer together. Sometimes it doesn't work that way. You can ask and the person rejects it and that is difficult. However, God calls us to obey and trust Him even if it doesn't turn out the way we want. The point is we need to do what God has called us to do.

Friends, don't justify your sin but repent and go to the person quickly even if it is a child.

I love what Micah says. "He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you. But to do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" Micah 6:8

It is simple but we can make it hard.

A friend sent me this verse over the weekend.

"One thing I have asked of the LORD. that I will seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple. Psalm 27:4

This is a great thought. If we have this heart attitude, all else will follow. If we are in His word and gazing on His beauty, it won't be difficult to ask for forgiveness. We are living out what we believe.

It doesn't matter what stage of life we are in so I pray that we will be women that desire to walk humbly with our Lord.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The Call

One of the great privileges about turning forty, is going in for a mammogram. Oh, the joy.

It is an uncomfortable and awkward moment that you want to end quickly.  I went last month and she (the tech)said I would receive the letter about the results. I thought nothing of it until ten days later when I received The Call.

My heart pinched.  The nurse informed me that I had to return again for more pictures. I asked why and she was very vague. She kept telling me not to worry and this happens to 30% of women. The statistic she told me didn't help. I had to make an appointment and the next available one was January 15. I received The Call on Dec. 22.

The following day. The radiologist gave me more information. She informed me that I have a 7mm asymmetrical focal in my breast. The tears ran down my face even though I wasn't sure what that meant. She too told me not to worry and 9 out of 10 women are fine. Again that didn't help. My mind immediately went to the worst case scenario.

I went down What If Lane, which is the worst thing to do. And more tears came and panic. I prayed and told the Lord this is not what I want. Yes, I want a deep faith and a full joy but just in a different way.

I called two friends who put my eyes back on Christ, which is the best thing to do. Our flesh can take over so quickly that we lose perspective. Seriously, I'm a child of God. I know I'm going to see Christ and I love Him.  Get a hold of yourself. Why am I panicking? Because as my dad would say, "We are still in the flesh."

My eyes went to the things of man instead of the things of God. Once I started to remember who my God is, the worries of this situation began to fade. The Lord brought me to this passage in Lamentations 3.

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. "The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "therefore I will hope in him." For the Lord will not cast off forever, but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion. "I called on your name, O LORD, from the depths of the pit; you heard my pleas, 'Do not close your ear to my cry for help!" You came near when I called on you; you said, 'Do not fear!' Lamentations 3:21-24, 31-32. 56-57.

I love God because every time we open His word He is speaking to us. He is reminding us of who He is. We don't need to fear because He is with us and will always be with us. He has already paved the road for  us we just have to trust Him and walk faithfully. Yes, are there scary moments, of course. He knows this but when we remember Him we can walk with confidence. We are all going home. Some are going earlier than others and some later but Christ is taking us to heaven.

It took a few days but my mind set shifted. It went from no to okay, Lord, your will not mine. It's okay whatever you decide. I'm thankful that He is patient with me. I'm thankful that He is rooting out the sin and stubbornness in my heart. And I'm thankful that He saved me.

I ended up getting an earlier appointment on Dec. 31. Again, this was the Lord's work and I'm amazed at His grace and mercy to me and us each day. We are undeserving.

Even though I knew the truths of God's word, I was still nervous. I think that is okay because the Lord knows this and as long as we sing a hymn or recite a verse we are clinging to Him and He is comforting us. I had another uncomfortable mammogram and awkward ultrasound because the tech decided to take a phone call while I'm on the bed. Don't worry about me lying here exposed while you talk to DMV.

But I think the Lord has a great sense of humour as He wanted me to relax and laugh.

Friends, I'm rejoicing because I am fine. It was nothing. But God would still be good even if it was something.

He reminded me that He is in control of all things. And all I need to do is rest in His sovereignty.

Remember our lives our penned by God, and lived out by us for His glory.