Tuesday, March 22, 2016
Yesterday in staff meeting we talked bout forgiveness. It’s something that I know I need every day. And it’s something I need to extend to others.
All of us have the tendency to view life from our own perspective. It takes a lot of practice, and a lot of help from the Holy Spirit, to get to the point where we can see life from the perspective of others. I know that when I hear the words to this song, I apply it to me every time.
My favorite part says:
Then like a hero who takes the stage when
We’re on the edge of our seats saying it’s too late
Well let me introduce you to amazing grace
and when I hear that, I’m thinking about myself and how when I’m at the end of myself God’s amazing grace steps in.
But the truth of the matter is that that song, and that concept, applies to a lot of other folks too. Not only has the cross made me flawless, but the cross has made my husband flawless, my children flawless, the people I work with flawless, the people I worship with flawless, Christians around the world regardless of their political views…. flawless. You get the idea.
I want to be able to say this to all of you every day — and to all of the others I listed above.
No matter what they say
Or what you think you are
The day you called His name
He made you flawless
What would life look like if we treated each other as flawless because of grace????
If you know this song and think, “Oh, i don’t need to listen to it or watch the video, you’re WRONG.” I have heard this song hundreds of times but have never watched the official music video until this morning and it is awesome! Watch the whole thing now. It’s so cool. Brought tears to my eyes.
Tuesday, March 08, 2016
There are many people (I’m married to one and the best of friends with another) who anticipate that the worst will happen so that they aren’t disappointed. It’s a strategy of life, but wow, I can’t live that way.
When I have a God who says that He has plans to prosper me and not to harm me, to give me a future and a hope…
When I have a a God who ‘works all things together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose”
When I have a God who says He can do “immeasurably more than I ask or think”
When the very words of Jesus Himself are that He came to give life, and give it more abundantly…
I can’t help myself…. I wake up excited about the day and what it holds! Where there might be some stuff that happens today that isn’t what I would chooset, as I said yesterday, there will be moments of joy today.
i will laugh. I will make someone else laugh. I will see smiles. People will be friendly to me. I might get to hug a resident or coworker. I will see something on Facebook that makes me chuckle. I will get a text or call from one of my kids or grandbabymamas with a picture that warms my heart. I will see plenty of sunshine and feel its warmth. I will have a nice long drink of healthy unsweet tea and no diet soda (since I have been informed it is poison). I will hear God’s whisper that He has all things under control, even during the tough spots.
Why wouldn’t I want to get up on a day when I know all those things will happen. And all of those things can and do happen every day.
And if I’m going to start my day hopeful, listening to this and getting it stuck in my head is not a bad thing…
Monday, March 07, 2016
Bart is a good preacher. In fact, he is an excellent preacher. But once in a while he knocks it out of the park, and yesterday was one of those days. He did it not once, but twice.
In fact, as I sat down in Sunday School, one of the men said, “Is Bart doing something special or surprising this morning in worship?” And I said, “No, why?” He said , "Well more than one person told us on our way in that we were in for a real treat."
The text was the three parables that Jesus taught in Luke 15 when the pharisees were nagging him for hanging out with the tax collectors and the sinners. I have heard so many sermons about this passage in my life -- probably dozens, but yesterday a couple thoughts were new to me. It may be that these thoughts are ones that you have had many times and I'm just slow, but they were revelations to me.
The first is that I had never put into context these stories with the fact that Jesus was defending himself about who he hung out with. That is pretty significant to the point of the stories.
But Bart said something yesterday that blew me away. He said, "If you are one of the 99 it really isn't that important to you that the shepherd have a standard of 100%. You don't really care that much, if you have already been found, if he is out looking for that last sheep. But it matters completely if you are #100."
Wow. How many times have I been like the Pharisees, completely secure in my position of one of the 99, not caring much whether or not Jesus heads out to seek and to save little lost #100? How many times do we as Christians stop ourselves from thinking about number 100 and feel content in being part of the 99.
I guess I'm asking you today to look around your life and see who is number 100. Who is the lonely one, the left out one, the forgotten one. Who is on the margins of society, looking in, waiting for you to be Jesus to them -- to reach out and pull them into the fold.
It's a profound thought, brought to you from my man, who can preach.