Really think about this:

“You have never lived an unloved moment in your life.”

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4th of July

Thought:  What if we celebrated our freedom from sin like we celebrate our country’s independence……I think God would love the fireworks!  🙂

“I see,” she said at last. thoughtfully.  “I see now. It is far bigger inside that it was outside.” “Of course, Daughter of Eve,” said the Faun.  “The further up and the further in you go, the bigger everything gets.  The inside is larger than the outside.”    From CS Lewis; “The Last Battle”

Parenting & Forgiveness

I love being a mother – I fiercely love my child. And what a great example of how God loves us, by allowing us to be parents. I mean, really, he could have caused people to popluate the earth in any form; by simply popping out of the ground, if He so wanted. But if that were the case, we’d lose the example of how much and just how He loves us.The other night, Ryan did something bad and I was upset with him. I talked to him for a bit then sent him to his room. He was upset, but not contrite. He was crying and hurt but initially because he was in trouble, not so much because he was sorry.

As I lay in bed, I prayed for him. I prayed that he would come in my room and apologize. I needed him to take the first step, so that I could immediately forgive him. I wanted to remove the pain he was feeling.  I wanted to forgive him so bad, but I couldn’t go in his room – he had to make the first move. Thinking about this today made me realize this is kind of how God must feel. Waiting for us to come to him, to repent and be freed of the guilt and saddness we’re carrying. So he can immediately forgive us. How awesome is that?

Self-Control vs. Resignation of Control

As far as self-discipline, don’t be too hard on yourself.  What it is, is time and training.  (i.e.:  You train your heart in WWJD choices.)  When you first begin to do anything, walk, learn to type, ride a bike, speak a foreign language, you’re going to stumble.  It’s because it’s new.  But it’s passion and practice that makes the task more fluid and eventually second nature.  Self-control is when you do things under your own power.  God wants you to rely on him and leave it to him.  It takes practice to lean on Him – however, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”   Luckily, the verse doesn’t read “I can do all things if I try hard enough…” – We’d always fall short.

This subject reminds me of my son when he received his first pair of roller skates.  He wanted to be a pro by the end of the day.  He really WANTED to and tried very, very hard, but that wasn’t to be.  That’s because to grow stronger, you have to fall and get back up.  He’s amazing now.  My point is, you have the heart and the passion.  Truly desire Christ.  He’ll lead the way, if you let him. 

The best advice, and what’s made the most remarkable changes in my life, is to spend lots of time studying.  Read bible-based books, study courses, attend services, and if possible, join and engage in small group discussions.  I remember back when I was in self-discipline mode.  I can look back now and see how hard I was trying.  After a few years of just seeping myself in Christ, I can see the growth and so many things are just part of my nature now, that I had to conscientiously think about before.  For example, forgiveness. My old nature was to be angry if someone hurt me or was less than kind – now I pray for them.  I forgive pretty much within minutes – this is not natural to me, it’s something I’ve learned over the years.  It’s a natural reaction for me now,but wasn’t always.  Sanctification (becoming like Christ) takes a lifetime. 

My best advice would be to focus more on whom He is and not what you need to do.  Should you stumble, repent immediately, know you’re forgiven and get back on track.  Another neat thing to do is to keep a prayer journal.  Just jot down your thoughts, it doesn’t have to be elaborate.  It’s really wonderful down the road when you review old notes – you will see how God moves through your life.  I love to go through mine – it’s tangible evidence of his presence in my life and of answered prayers.

God is constant

For hundreds, if not thousands of years, eggs were good.  Then sometime in the 80’s, a new study showed eggs were bad.  Sometime later they were good again.  I’ve lost track of where we are with eggs.

Humanity is in a constant wave of change.  Priorities 100 years ago, nowadays would be underachieving.  The goal for America once was a car in every garage and a chicken in every pot.  Now we have a car for each family member of driving age, family share plans, TV’s in every room, vacation houses…and so on.

Everything changes, hair styles, music, clothing, morals, what’s cool, what’s not cool, politics, technology.  Everything.

Even ourselves as Christians.  We start out baby Christians, Sunday attenders, we add a little, small groups, some form of ministry, we grow and mature, like here we’re taking classes, learning about the servant’s heart and our own gifts and soon we’ll find a place where we fit and make a change once again.

At one point in my life, I was ‘into’ heavy metal, then ‘80’s music, a short stint in country, now Christian music.  God was the same God when I listened to heavy metal as he is now when I listen to Christian.

He was the same God when eggs were bad as he was when they were good. 

—-insert from book about Wind/Change

‘I AM” God says of himself.  In this constantly fluxuating and changing world, I can’t imagine a better thing to anchor myself to that the one who:

Is, always was and forever shall be.

A bit about sin
Sin is in us and it’s powerful.  Temptation is all around us – the opportunity to make ‘a bad choices’ abounds.  To overcome it, you must replace/fill that space with something more powerful.  Christ is more powerful!

We should always seek God.  He will meet us – Romans 1 says if we do not search for him, he will not search for us (part of our free will), however, as we reach out for him, he too reaches out for us.  He wants us so much, he merely waits for us to call on him and he's there.

Love others the way Christ loves us: 

  • When we’re had a bad day
  • When we’re less than attractive
  • When we’re bitter or angry
  • When we’re being less than lovely

He’ll never leave you or forsake you. 

  • Love him back.  Love others like he loves us.

God loves you and I doubt he’ll get over it.  🙂