Saturday, March 31, 2007

heavy heart

My heart has been heavy for my mother lately. I love her very much. She is always in pain..I wish I could take it away or feel it for her. My hearts strong desire is to see her saved. I want to see her life changed. I want to see her at peace. I want her to have peace about death and about life. I want to see her new. I pray for her salvation everyday, but tonight it was heavy on my heart as she was telling me she was in pain.

I wish sin had never happened. I wish my mom didn't have pain. I want her saved. I wouldn't know how to deal with life if she died. I cry thinking about it. I would cry so hard as a kid if she went out for the night. She is precious to me and God knows this. I want Him to act quickly with her and save her if He hasn't already. I want to see her a new creature in Christ.

I would rather die right now than go through the pain of her death. I don't want her to fear death. I want her to trust with all her heart in Christ and have the peace I have about death. Death is nothing if you only receive and trust in Christ Jesus. I just want her to do that. Sometimes I find it hard to have faith when I pray everyday for it and she is still hurting.

I want to see my mother apart of our family in Christ. I want her to see, feel and experience what I have experienced. The love and joy of Christ and love for the saints. It is so free..I just want her to be at peace and saved without a doubt in her mind.

"If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe (trust) in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead you shall be saved."

No more, no less.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Tower of refuge and strength.

I am learning spiritual discipline is a wonderful thing. Just taking a few minutes to settle my mind, focus on God and pray. Even if I am not in prayer, focusing on Him to clear my mind of the world keeps me in the Spirit. I can have strength to live everyday for Christ if I go to Him for strength genuinely and not out of a mind that says "I have to do this to earn God's favor". But if I go to God with a pure heart and a heart that wants to obey Him no matter how much it hurts or no matter how many times I fail and need to be whacked on the head, He will strengthen me, comfort me and give me peace that passes understanding. The peace that passes understanding, I've learned, is just that. It makes no sense. I have gone to God in prayer about doubts and worry and have this peace after a few minutes of talking. Nothing was said about the problem in my ears, but comfort was spoken into my very soul and I was able to rest and to be glad and loving. He is, indeed our "Tower of refuge and strength".

"Those who wait upon the LORD will renew their strength. They will mount up with wings like the eagles. They will run and not grow weary."

The living Word of God is true. You start to see evidence of what is written in God's Word in your own life, thus strengthening your faith. What a wonderful God we have. He is infinite in beauty, power and mercy. Just receive Him and His grace. He will indeed be your sufficiency.

EDIT: I noticed the last part of this post looks very much like a devotional...It wasn't on purpose.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Passin' time

I am so sleepy at the moment (yawn)

I played video games for the first time in a long time last night. "Viva Pinata". It is this really colorful and beautiful game (especially in HD) where you work a garden and house pets. It takes a while to till the earth though, but pinata pet's come and work your soil and they grow and stuff. It's really addicting. I'll probably buy it when I get a job so I can have moderation with it. If I bought it now, I would put all my time into it because I'm at home most of the time. But it really is a fun game.

Anyway, I had prayer time this morning. It was difficult to focus because I'm so sleepy. I need to go make some coffee soon and do some cleaning. I didn't wake up until about 12 today. That's really bad. I haven't done that in a long time..I'm glad I'll be going back to Don and Susanne's this weekend. That will help my sleeping schedule.

I have also been re-reading Order of the Phoenix (5th Harry Potter book) and there is a character named Sirius Black. He is locked up in his house and can't go anywhere because the Ministry of Magic is on his tail, trying to prosecute him for a crime he didn't commit. And in the book, he is very cranky, frustrated and feels quite useless, because he can't get out and prove his worth to anyone, while everyone else in the Order of the Phoenix is patrolling, getting information and are on the front lines of this brewing war that is about to unleash. I understand where he is coming from. Not with the war thing, but I do have the same feelings about being locked up all the time.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Day Dreaming

I've been having this vision lately. Just of the part in the movie E.T. where they're all on their bikes, peddling toward these cops with guns, ready to shoot. But Elliot keeps going, because he is connected to E.T. and they are one in a sense. They're abiding in each other.

Elliot was trusting E.T. to do something. He didn't know what he was going to do exactly, but by the expression on Elliot's face, you can see E.T. is communicating with him on a different level. And at the last moment, they all rise into the air, flying above their enemy.

Some would say that is corny. I happen to like it.

Romans 7:21 Situation

Sitting here, having coffee about to go to Bible study around 6:30 with Matt. Today was good.

I'm having this empty feeling in the back of my mind though. I want a deeper relationship with God. I want more of Him, but I can't discipline my body to stay consistent in it. I feel sort of messy and unorganized. Of course, I don't want it to be like 5 o'clock prayer time for like 20 minutes or whatnot. I despise spiritual programs. I wouldn't come up with a program for loving my wife (had I had one) and I don't intend on doing it with Jesus.

Sometimes I feel this laziness rise up in me when I want to go pray or read the Word. It is a frustrating thing to be consistent.

I'm always reminded of C.S. Lewis when he said, "No man knows how bad he is until he tries very hard to be good."

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Worthy we stand, saved by His hand

I'm sitting here listening to music with itunes and talking to Ronno thy Botto on AIM.

So, I got kinda lazy today and I knew I shouldn't have taken a nap. I get cranky when people wake me up. I feel myself harden up sometimes when people come around that I'm not fond of. I need to do more praying on that, but the problem is, when you do that, then God causes those people you don't like being around to come around more often to soften you up. And my personality, or rather my problem, is that It takes me getting whacked in the head over and over before I come out of my fleshy shell. I'm very reclusive when it comes to loving people. I have been hardened up over the years I've noticed..When I was a kid, I wanted to express my love to my friends and be close to them, but in our world, that is considered "gay". So I subconsciously hardened myself up to those sort of things and now God is slowly and painfully softening those hardened spots. He has done a wonderful job with my mom though. That has grown my faith in Him...There is still work that needs to be done there, but God has definitely brought me a long way and will definitely bring me further. My job is to obey and let Him work.

Anyway..I've caught myself paying more attention to the world lately. Which is very annoying, so I need to really chill out with the internet and t.v. It takes my focus off God and puts my mind on the world and I'm left acting out like a moron with my attitude and just being spiritually messy and lazy.

I'm not trying to be depressing or anything. I'm really happy nearly all the time, I just have habits that annoy me and this blogs purpose is so that I can put feelings/frustrations into words and hopefully, come and look at some older posts later on and see growth in myself.

Sunday, March 25, 2007


I just wrote an essay about problems I'm having with anger, being under pressure because I'm not under pressure, but I got that car-sick feeling in my spirit about it all. I hate being angry and depressing. It's stupid.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Jesus is my Savior. "See you at the gate!"

Today was a good day. The Lord is wonderful as always. I hope my love never goes cold. That is one of my fears.

Anyway, today was good as already stated. I read some of Romans. Paul is one difficult to understand dude sometimes. Some of it is probably translation issues, but I am understanding more and more. My fear is that I am one of these jokes who always gains knowledge, but never practices what I learn. The Lord will complete the good work He began in me.

But I went out with my friends for dinner tonight at Sake Express. I love being with them. I only wish mom and my little brother Josh could be with us. I pray for their salvation everyday. All it takes is simple faith in Christ. That is the simplicity of the gospel. My heart gets heavy at times for them. They mean a lot to me and I feel the need to be protective over them now. Mom has told me often how she would die for me. She had better not ever do that. I would be very angry. I know my destiny. I have made my reservation with Jesus Christ. I want her to be sure of it as well. I'm not saying she isn't saved, but I want to know for sure she is. Until then, I'll be the one dying.

I have recently been having stressful dreams about her. In everyone of them, someone is trying to kill her and I'm too weak to stop them. That weak feeling in your dreams like you can't run or over power anything.

Enough of the depressing stuff. I saw the movie "The Last Mimzy" last night with mom and Josh. It was a pretty good one timer. Nothing I would watch again really. It was kind of new age-ish and stuff but it was interesting. I had no idea what was going on until near the very end. That was annoying. I did see our friends Barb and Joey at the theater though. I love just being around those two even if I don't talk much. I feel drawn toward them in my spirit.

So, right now, I am sitting here having a cup of near lukewarm coffee and typing this up. I feel a little nauseous...I think I may go have some prayer time and read more Order of the Phoenix for the second time. I love me some Harry Potter.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Love is a characteristic of life. God is life.

I was reading John again today. I never get tired of reading John. Never.

I was reading part of chapter 8, 9 and 10. I particularly love chapter 10 when Jesus likens us to sheep and He the Good Shepherd. It really made me realize, in chapter 9 that, had we actually lived in Jesus' time, He would have probably came off as crazy to us had we not seen the signs He did. I love the story of Him healing the beggar born blind. The guy was willing to believe what Jesus says because of the love Jesus had shown to him. In the same way, It has been impressed on me that the more I love Jesus, the more I will trust Him and the more I will obey Him. Love is all encompassing. Love for Christ produces trust, (which is needed to be saved) obedience and love for all people. Because Jesus commanded that we love our neighbors as ourselves. It is all about relationship. Not about following laws or regulations. It is about growing in a loving knowledge of Jesus.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

"The gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

I think some people are annoyed with me. And I am annoyed with myself. For different reasons, of course. Keep in mind, the point of this blog is basically to express my feelings to myself, slow down my mind down and calm my heart. I get so ADD. Not really ADD, but I keep wanting to act the way I used to in little ways. Like getting irritable, (that is my main one) not watching what I'm saying. I'm not having language problems or anything, it's basically me just not thinking before I speak and if I were to keep that up, I would end up saying ridiculous things without noticing.

I get so in the 'I just want to relax' mood that I start to do things that please the flesh and not the spirit. Like spending way too much time watching t.v. or cutting up with mom too much. Not that those things are bad; I just need to learn moderation. I guess I should say it's a balance issue.

Another big problem is self-punishment. I don't realize that I do it, but I do..If I feel like I have sinned or have been living in a way contrary to who I am now, I feel uncomfortable and need to confess it..I'm not saying confession brings about forgiveness. Forgiveness itself, is a moment in time act by Christ's precious death on the cross. I'm just saying sometimes, I tend to punish myself by waiting a while to feel worthy to start being a Christian again. Which contrary to faith. I can't help earn my forgiveness and it hurts a little, but at the same time, it is freeing. It's in my mind somehow that I must suffer or feel a certain amount of guilt before I confess my sins and enter back into fellowship with God, which is entirely false. I am forgiven. There is no in between. You're either forgiven or not forgiven. I need to accept that I can't do anything to earn forgiveness. I am not forgiven because I conjured up enough guilt, remorse, etc. I am forgiven because what Christ has done. The end. To add anything to that is to make it faith plus works. It is sooooooo hard to change your thinking, because my natural mind just wants to help someway. I feel I should be punished, and while I think that, I forget that Jesus was punished in my place and to try and take punishment on myself, takes away from His glory.

How awesome is our Lord Jesus? Give Him "honor and glory forever and ever." Amen.

That kind of forgiveness makes you want to shout and get excited. Accept it. Believe it. Trust it. Don't confuse it. Just have simple faith.

I have also realized that, to some people, I may seem like I am preaching..That isn't it at all. The one thing I stress, when proclaiming the gospel, is that, it's free. That is what I am preaching. I am preaching free tickets to heaven. I have unlimited tickets to give out to any who wants to simply receive them. I pray I don't ever give the idea that you must do something to earn salvation from the penalty of sin. I dare not add one little thing to Christ's death and take away one ounce of His glory. I dare not say because of the change I experienced, that it helps at all in my salvation. The change that has happened in my life is only a result of God opening opening my heart to Him. It has nothing to do with earning or attaining salvation. I don't want to preach a gospel of works. What kind of good news is that? Every religion has works in it. Every religion involves observance to moral law. If that were the "good news", you could go to any religion and find it.

I want to preach Christ crucified. Do not add or subtract ANYTHING to that. To do so is to say Christ's death wasn't sufficient to save you.

To add a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g to the gospel of Christ's sacrifice is to say His death wasn't enough to save you.

If people can go to heaven another way, then why did Christ die? Surely, if there were another way, why didn't He just point people towards the other way and spare Himself to humility, suffering and separation from His Father. If the free, wonderful, beautiful message of Christ crucified offends anyone, then let their blood be on their own heads. To receive knowledge of and reject the absolutely free gift of eternal bliss, living with the One True God in eternity is the utmost of evil I would think. "How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation."

All I want anyone to do is accept the message of Christ. I want to see them happy, saved, on their way to heaven to be with me, the saints and God forever. Trust Jesus. If you don't want to, fine. I don't get angry when people don't accept the gospel. I get frustrated. I want them to experience true belief in Jesus and absolute assurance of eternity in heaven with Our God.

I'm not directing this toward anyone, I don't remember exactly how I got on this subject.. but I love the gospel. I love it simple, unfiltered and raw. I wouldn't take it any other way. I would dare not say salvation relied on anything I did. To gamble my eternal destiny on how good I have been or have reliance on myself in any way for my eternal dwelling place is a grave, eternal mistake.

Monday, March 19, 2007

I'm not really this articulate in person

Currently, my ears are sore from listening to the ipod continuously. I really need to buy some plugs. These huge ear muffs are ridiculous and they hurt after awhile.

I just had some coffee and I am sitting here doing nothing productive. I got a devotional by Don Piper, the guy who wrote 90 Minutes In Heaven (awesome book) and I am just reading random devotions to get a better understanding of his beliefs. He has some very moving words in it. I, in particular, love the fact that he is Baptist. If not for non-denominational, I would definitely be in a Baptist church. Sometimes I feel myself wanting to find a Baptist church. But not the little country ones. I have problems with country stuff. I don't particularly believe in country. nascar, (I refuse to give it the honor of capitalization) and nascar paraphernalia should be considered sinful.

Anyway...I guess I am doing fine today. I would much rather have the ability to fly and get away from the world for a few da...Years. =)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Faith. Fahti? htiaf? FAITH!

I'm feeling kind of tired at the moment. It was a rough night with stressful dreams, as usual.

I'm trying to learn how to deal with my anger and irritability. I can suppress it myself a little while, but in the end, I always end up being a failure, feeling exhausted, discouraged and completely drained. Then I feel condemned and it takes a few more days to get my mind refocused on Christ and to start all over again. I'm trying not to do that again, but it's hard. I can pray and pray about it, but anytime I'm irritated, I feel my flesh rise up and want to lash out. It has gotten much better since I became a believer..It's more just irritable attitudes sometimes now, but it still frustrates me. I hate it.

Sometimes I just wish people wouldn't aggravate me so bad. But I know that isn't the solution. I need to find the solution to my own problem with irritability.

I get sick of being inconsistent, lazy, fearful and faithless. Some days I feel like I can move mountains, other days I feel like I want to crawl in a dark place so I don't have to look at how filthy I am anymore.

But, thank God that my acceptance is not based on my performance, but on Christ's.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Jesus...Sometimes I have nothing left in me but the words "have mercy". But the thing is...I'm not really going through anything hard..and that's the problem. I don't know how to have faith if I am not going through hard situations.

It is one insane mind maze. I just don't have the brain power or wisdom to work it all out in my head. My battlefield is my mind. I'm used to physical battles. I wish it were something like a physical injury or a broken heart or stress over finances..something I could see.

I can't see anything sometimes. I even forget how to have faith. How stupid is that?

Friday, March 16, 2007

Holy is the LORD God almighty

Today was awesome. I was very afraid earlier today before hanging out with my cousin Paul for the first time in a long time. We talked a lot..I look forward to talking a lot more with him.

We went to see Night at the Museum with Ben Stiller. It was a good movie apart from being under the air conditioner when it's already like 30 something outside. I had a really good time though.

It was also very humbling to have someone you have betrayed in the worst way, take you to a movie and buy you food. It hurt a little to be honest, but It was amazing to see that kind of forgiveness. He was very respectful and understanding about my faith in Christ which really comforted me..He is the first one to recognize that I am not the person I was which made me extremely happy..I was so glad he could see it. Not so much because I want to say "hey, look at me, I'm a good boy" ...I just hate being associated with the person I used to be.

I was a little excited when he started asking me questions about my faith and it kinda came out like it always this huge, bundled up ball of Christian doctrine. But I tend to talk a little too much when it comes to my faith. I get a little ahead of myself. God has to remind me during those times. I will hear something inside me say "calm down and let him speak".

I'm so thankful for such a beautiful cousin. I can see God working in his heart. I can see God working..I see things unfolding. I still can't make much sense out of somethings, but I see God doing things in different areas of my life. He is so amazing, faithful and wonderful.

Thank you, Lord Jesus. I love you.

"There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus"

I despise these clouds of condemnation that come over me, yelling at me that I am not a doer of the Word and I am a hypocrite and I do not have faith in Christ. I don't want to be a people pleaser, but I don't want people to be angry with me. Especially those I love. I'm thankful no one has gotten angry at me for my faith, but I'm scared I will offend someone and then try to compromise my morals for their sake. I know I'm stupid and weak and mess up all the time. I hate messing up. I hate being a failure..I hate being a coward. But at the same time, I do get scared and I do want to crawl into a hole and hide.

"Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?" Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!"

There is also another voice in my head. These voices are not audible, nor are they words of thought..But the voice basically says to me "You know the Truth". But it isn't as strong as the one screaming condemnation.

I know the truth..why am I afraid? Spurgeon said it best I think: "Thou art not saved because thou art righteous. Did Christ not die to save sinners?"

I don't want people to think I am a fake, but at the same time I don't want to care what they think. I love God and I want to follow Christ. I am not perfect by any means, but I don't enjoy being imperfect. I don't try to use the whole "I'm not perfect" as a cop out Christian excuse either. I literally mean I'm not perfect and I can't bear it sometimes. I don't do all the right things, I don't pretend never to be a hypocrite, because I am always learning, growing and changing..Yes, I am a hypocrite. I despise it when I catch myself being hypocritical. I despise being imperfect and I despise being inconsistent in being consistent to strive toward perfection. I get tired at times and just feel the need to yell out "Father, have mercy, I'm a worthless sinner!"

Regardless of all this, Jesus is where the tension subsides. He just gently, through His Spirit, tells me to trust Him and His perfection and not my own.

Thank you, Lord Jesus.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

"By You purified."

It is 12:19 in the AM and I'm at the computer talking to my little brother Joshua. He reminds me a lot of myself in some ways. Especially with his attitude toward girls. He wants to be good and kind to the person he is with. My prayer to God is that He would become a strong soldier for the Lord Jesus. I want my little brother and my mother to be transformed and saved by Jesus' blood through faith.

I want them to be with me in heaven. I love them both so much. I could give my life if it meant in anyway helping in their salvation. I understand what Paul meant when he talked about "I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ" if it meant the people he loved could be saved.

I can only hope my dad was a believer. There is one moment I remember with him I sort of cling to. He once cussed in front up me, then he looked up and said "Forgive me, Lord".

Anyone reading this, please pray for them. They are precious to me.

Refiners fire

"He gives and takes away, but my heart will choose to say, blessed be the name of the Lord."

My brother Ronnie is so deep rooted in Christ. It encourages me so much. He has clung to Christ and God has upheld him with His righteous right hand. God is beautiful and faithful. I adore Him.

He has been such a faithful friend to me and I hope I will be to him as well.

"Let all within us, praise His holy name."

Not much going on today. Ronnie and I are suppose to hang out tonight. I always look forward to that. He is such a wonderful friend and brother. I couldn't have asked for a better brother in Christ.

I'm plugged into the ipod. Could you have guessed? I'm really starting to dig classical more and more. Mostly because I can read and listen at the same time. I can't have lyrics in music and read at the same time. I've had the song "Now We Are Free" from the movie Gladiator playing heavily lately. I've never seen the movie and after hearing the song, I'm kind of afraid to watch it because I don't want it to mess up the song. The song, for some strange reason, reminds me of the apostle Paul. Not sure why..Must be the whole Roman influence. It's beautiful.

Other than that, I've just been cleaning and reading more of the Old Testament. 1 Kings actually..God has put a desire in my heart for it. I've read the New testament over and over, so this is a good learning experience and very interesting seeing Old Testament prophecies connect so well with Jesus. Also, a few things I had heard but never knew the extent of..Like how rich and wise God had made Solomon. Crazy stuff. You also get a sense of exactly how much mercy Jesus brought, reading the OT. Those guys before Jesus had it hard..It really makes you cling to Jesus at times when reading it. It is scary without Jesus.

God is amazing and is working on me always. I love Him and my brothers and sisters He has given me in Jesus so much. I adore them all. I adore God.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

"The evil that I will not to do, that I practice."

So, I'm kinda having a rough time in focusing. I am pretty diligent in reading the Word but I'm having a difficult time "feeling" like I am being a doer of the Word. I'm irritable lately..Not angry or anything, but irritable. It really frustrates me because I can't get focused on chilling out my tone of voice toward mom..It's partly due to me tired of being in the house all the time which makes me bored and in turn, makes me sleepy and that makes me irritable because I don't feel like talking to anyone or answering questions if I can't wake up. I irritate myself a lot with it and feel like God is frowning on me, which is of course ridiculous. The Word says that is the Spirit inside me telling me I'm acting out of my true identity in Christ. I feel really uncomfortable when it happens. Not sick or anything..Just uncomfortable and uneasy, yet I continue in it after I confess it over and over. I always end up going back to half heartedly cleaning the house and being irritable with mom. I feel a lot like Cheyenne in the TV show Reba. There is an episode where she is pregnant and moody and yells at her husband Van across the room and says "Stop breathing down my neck". I sort of feel the same way with people when I'm in this mentality of just frustration from lack of self-control of my behavior.

I'm not so much legalistic. I just hate not being able to be perfect..I know I can't be perfect and I know the Christian life isn't about being perfect, but the Spirit of Christ is perfect and it hates the flesh and the flesh hates the Spirit.

Writing helps me understand what I'm feeling and what is wrong, so if no one reads this, I don't care. It helps me with understanding myself.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

"Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush Him; He has put Him to grief."

"Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God." - Ephesians 5:2

I took this from a book by John Piper called "50 Reasons Why Jesus Came To Die". I thought Piper described some things beautifully in it.

Jesus did not wrestle His angry Father to the floor of heaven and take the whip out of His hand. He did not force Him to be merciful to humanity. His death was not the begrudging consent of God to be lenient to sinners. No, what Jesus did when He suffered and died was the Father's idea. It was a breathtaking strategy, conceived even before creation, as God saw and planned the history of the world. That is why the Bible speaks of God's "purpose and grace, which He gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began" (2 Timothy 1:9).

Already in the Jewish Scriptures the plan was unfolding. The prophet Isaiah foretold the sufferings of the Messiah, who was to take the place of sinners. He said that the Christ would be "smitten by God" in our place.

Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was crushed for our iniquities....All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all. (Isaiah 53:4-6)

But what is most astonishing about this substitution of Christ for sinners is that it was God's idea. Christ did not intrude on God's plan to punish sinners. God planned for Him to be there. One Old Testament prophet says, "It was the will of the LORD to crush Him; He has put Him to grief" (Isaiah 53:10).

This explains the paradox of the New Testament. On the one hand, the suffering of Christ is an outpouring of God's wrath because of sin. But on the other hand, Christ's suffering is a beautiful act of submission and obedience to the will of the Father. So Christ cried from the cross, "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" (Matthew 27:46). And yet the Bible says that the suffering of Christ was a fragrance to God. "Christ loved us and gave Himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God" (Ephesians 5:2).

Oh, that we might worship the terrible wonder of the love of God! It is not sentimental. It is not simple. For our sake God did the impossible: He poured out His wrath on His own Son-the One whose submission made Him infinitely unworthy to received it. Yet the Son's very willingness to receive it was precious in God's sight. The Wrath-Bearer was infinitely loved.

All that is required on our part is that we repent of our sins and trust Jesus Christ's precious payment for our disobedience and we will have been "Blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ" (Ephesians 1:3).

The only way to enter heaven is to receive it through Christ. Thank God He didn't make it complicated or uncertain.

Monday, March 5, 2007


It's 6:00 PM and I am currently typing in this blog and cooking fish-sticks. My stomach feels like it's eating itself and I have drank a little too much coffee today. I fell asleep trying to will myself awake today. I can't get myself awake unless I have coffee. That is partially because I don't eat very healthy. I need to knock off the junk food for a while.

Anyway, I've been reading "Grace Amazing" by Steve McVey. He is my new favorite author/teacher right now. I've really been blessed by his books. He has made a lot of the scripture I thought I knew come alive. I've really come to understand some of Jesus' sayings more. I really wish Steve would do full study of Hebrews. That would be great. I definitely intend on reading more of his books.

Anyway, my food is done..Short update but whatever. I only wrote to pass the time waiting for my fish-sticks to get done. Yum yum, eat 'em up!

Sunday, March 4, 2007

Just trying to harness my thoughts

Today is a better day than yesterday so far.

I'm plugged into my ipod at the moment. I'm learning so much and unlearning some things in my faith right now. It's amazing how Christians readily believe following the ten commandments have nothing to do with salvation but everything to do with sanctification. Yet the Bible says we have died to the law. The ten commandments purpose was to drive us to the end of ourselves and show us our need of a Savior, yet we still try and live by the ten commandments when Jesus and many others in the Bible say that it is impossible. I'm learning that is a huge reason why the body of Christ isn't feeling the joy and peace Jesus talks so much about. We just can't get our minds around the fact that we are accepted by what Christ has done. Nothing more, nothing less. Then we wonder why it's so hard to bring people to Christ. It's because we lay more on them than we ourselves can even bare. "You must not read Harry Potter, you must not smoke, you must not drink, you must not, you must not, you must not", like it's our job to get them to quit living in sin. We have completely missed the point. Christianity isn't about following rules, it's about following Christ. If Christianity was just about rules and regulations, what would separate it from any other religion? It is about Christ. A loving relationship with God through Christ. Growing in the knowledge of Him through His Son Jesus. Jesus saves. Jesus Sanctifies. The power of a loving relationship with Christ changes peoples hearts. Why didn't I see it before? I remember when God first turned my heart toward Him. I wasn't motivated to stop sinning because I thought I would go to hell, but because I found out God wasn't who I thought He was. My love for God changed my attitude toward sin.

Love fulfills the law. "His law is love and His gospel is peace." Jesus said plainly: "If you love Me, you will keep my commandments." He is saying keeping His commandments is a result of loving Him. The reason it's so hard for us to understand the Bible most of the time is because we look to closely at it. Jesus spoke plainly about everything.

The way to live a better life isn't following laws. The Bible says the law is the "ministry of death."
and "By the works of the law, no flesh shall be justified." What is the purpose for the ten commandments? To show us our need for Christ. The Savior, Redeemer, the Way, the Truth and the Life.

The law entered so that the offense (sin) might abound the Bible says. In other words, The ten commandments came so that you would sin more, not less. By this, God was trying to show us that we can't keep His law. can you keep a law you have already broken? You only have to break it once and you're "Guilty of all" James says.

I'm not trying to say it's ok to sin. It isn't. I'm saying that even if you were to stop sinning or started "trying your best" to be a "good" person won't save you. Neither do I condone smoking, drinking or any other sin. I'm simply saying quitting these in order to make yourself righteous (right with God) won't work. Quitting these things are a result of being right with God.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

"He who has the Son has life. He who does not have the Son of God does not have life."

I can't wake up. Even after my strong coffee. It's like it made me even more tired.

Anyway, today isn't starting out very well. Every time I read Hebrews, I get a little uneasy. It is a scary book to read if you don't understand a lot of it. And I don't understand a lot of it. I kind of use the "I'm not a Hebrew so it doesn't pertain to me too much" theory. I say that jokingly of course. But I would really like to have someone with a lot of wisdom guide me through it. I'm trying to learn no matter what I read, I know the gospel. "Believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved." My faith tends to hug Him tighter when I read passages I don't understand and it helps a lot.

But yeah, it still kind of makes my intimacy with God a little more on edge when I read something I don't understand. God will carry me through it and teach me.

Friday, March 2, 2007

"Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day."

So, God is deepening my relationship with Him through Christ Jesus. It is hard to remember that good behavior doesn't cause God to love you more than He already does. Christ has made me "acceptable in the beloved." I can't add anything to that and it hurts my human mind because it is a total reversal in thinking. Faith, in a way, is hard work. It isn't physical (though physical actions will result from it) but it is the most simple, most complicated work there is. Especially when you're basically sitting at home most of the time learning simple stuff. We always want to go straight for the big things I guess.

So, the most important thing for me to realize is "It is all small to God." and my behavior has nothing to do with making myself acceptable or lovable in the sight of God. Jesus is my Savior. I don't save myself, nor do I add anything to what He has done. "Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?"

I'm glad not to have my own righteousness. Which would be painfully pitiful. Yet..I still see myself wandering away and trying to make myself better or more presentable rather than to stay humble and acknowledge that not only do I need help..But I am completely dead without God working in me.

But writing about this helps me pinpoint my problem and find the source of my discomfort. So if I write about the same thing over and over...It's probably because I'm just going through it myself and figuring out what I need to do. (or not do)

Thursday, March 1, 2007

"Bless the Lord, O my soul who redeems your life from destruction!"

So I'm nearly done with the book Grace Walk, which I'm sure to read over and over because these truths are hard not to forget, believe and understand. The Bible, spiritual truth and Jesus' teachings are nearly always contradictory or are in complete opposition to human understanding and logic. It is paradox after paradox. What may seem passive to us is actually labor.

The gospel is so controversial and so hard to comprehend because it involves nothing other than trust. No works, no, nothing of yourself. It is all grace. Unmerited favor, mercy, undeserved kindness and so forth. In which you, if you knew my past, would think I would be the best Christian in the world seeing as how lazy I have always been. But trusting is the hardest work we will ever have to do. I'm struggling with it. Sometimes I'm going strong, full of joy and rest, peace and love..and other times I start to think "Is it really this easy?"

This teaching, or I should say truth, has completely reversed what I thought. After reading the book 7 Biblical Truths You Won't Hear in Church by David Rich and Grace Walk, I've totally ran into one of those huge brick walls called "Duh!". I get so excited when I meditate on it and realize that the strength, goodness, ability and freedom doesn't come from me mustering up obedience and good behavior. Jesus said plainly "If you love Me, you will keep my commandments." Loving Jesus, abiding in Him, trusting in Him naturally produces a Godly life. We can't change ourselves or "clean up our act". Jesus said "Apart from Me you can do nothing." Which is to say "You can't do it, so let me." How exciting, motivating and amazingly wonderful is grace? God does it all for us. Our "work" is to trust. "This is the work of God, that you believe on Him whom He sent."

Salvation, going to heaven is just the beginning. God has so much more for us than we can imagine. Jesus has accomplished it all in one act. Salvation, sanctification and glorification.

"It is finished!"