When you attend your Sunday services are you worshiping God? It seems like these days many people enjoy playing church but do not want to BE church. Remember we the people are the church not the buildings we meet in. What does the world see when they look at us? I like to hope the see kindness and compassion but too many times these days I feel like they see judgemental hypocritical holier than thou people looking for someone to be better than. I am blessed to be a part of a wonderful church that so far and to my knowledge is the kind compassionate ones but the world doesn't take the time to get to know us because like it or not we are all thrown in one basket "Christians" or "Church People" so it is up to those of us that are trying to live right and be the example to step up and be recognized. When is the last time you have done something for someone just because? Lets go out this week and show the world random acts of Kindness that will show them that Jesus love
Well it is that time of year again. Summer has begun. School has let out, and summer camps are opening all around the country. We will be attending one of those camps this week, Kids Kamp 2012 JUMP putting your Faith in Motion, at Pine Springs Baptist Camp. I ask that you all remember the sponsors, teen helpers, camp workers, teachers, and most importantly the kids this week. Youth camp is a time when the gospel will be presented free of electronic devices where kids can really pay attention. Salvation, rededications, and commitment to follow the Lord into his ministry can be and often are the results of these camps. Pray for the Lord to move this week and hearts would be ready to receive Him and His message. Also pray for the safty of those traveling to and from the camp grounds. May God Bless you and Keep you this week.
Reading this morning I came across a passage of scripture that reminded me that we are responsible for what we gaze upon. Of course I am referring to the 101st Psalm 3rd verse. " I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me." Psalm 101:3. It is so easy to sit down in front of the television and begin to watch a show and realize it is something we should not be watching and continue to watch. Let me start by saying we are not responsible for a passing thought that comes through our mind or in front of our eyes but we are responsible for the things we dwell upon. It is very clear here in the Word of GOD that we are to not let these things cleave to us. When something comes on our television or across our eyes that is not pleasing to the Lord change the channel or walk away. Satan is a master at this technique. He knows that if he can get us hooked by showing us something that looks appealing and fun and not harmful at all then he has a grip on us to drag us down. He has been using this tactic since Genesis 3:6- "And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes". We all know how that story ended the need for Christ to come down from Heaven and hang upon a tree for our sins. As summer approaches be careful of where your eyes are directed and what you allow them to dwell on. Change the channel when something you should not be watching is on it does not matter if it is a "good " show or it isnt that bad. Remember Jesus is there watching and looking at the same thing you are.
Reading through Ezra again this morning I find myself realizing that sometimes, more often than not, Satan comes at us in ways we do not expect. The Nation of Israel were excited and ready to rebuild the House of the Lord and opposition came in the form of someone desiring to work with them. Satan has been using trickery since the Garden when he persuaded Adam and Eve that they would be like God. He is still using trickery today. It is his desire that all of our efforts to serve the Lord would fail, but he knows if he comes at us in the open it will make it easy to resist him. I want us to remember that if it looks to good to be true then we should examine it. Look at the source and where the idea is coming from. God desires for his children to succeed and Satan knows if he can keep a Christian down he is advancing his agenda and slowing the work of the Lord, but that is all he is doing is slowing it because remember God's will shall be done. Even though the enemy of Israel delayed the Temple from being rebuilt eventually it was rebuilt and established for the Lord. When Satan gets you down in life why not use that oppurtunity to go ahead and remain on your knees and gain even more strength from the Lord. I have a plaque in my house that reminds of this everyday that a man is never stronger than when he is on his knees. Remember the Devil is as a roaring Lion. Keep watch for him dont become an easy victim live your life according to the word of God, steeped in prayer and be watchful for the snares and traps that Satan has set befor you.
Reading this morning in Ezra I find myself wanting to talk about giving according to your ability,but if I am going to be true to God I need to write about music. Music is an influential tool that can be used for good or bad. We find the children of Israel have been brought out of the Babylonian captivity to find the temple in bad shape. They begin to restore the House of the Lord and after they had laid the foundation it says that they SANG praising and giving thanks to the Lord. Music is not our enemy it has been used through out time to enhance and intensify the worship of God. Today there are many different types of music in the world we need to be careful about what we put inside of our minds. These "innocent " songs that we hear and enjoy can lead us to think about worldly things and even to some degree become desensitized to the harmful effects of what the sin being sung about does to not only our body but our mind and soul as well. I enjoy music as much as the next guy but i am learning that sometimes the songs I like because they are catchy I do not need to putting into my mind. Let's keep our music choices to things that uplift and glorify. Music touches every part of your emotion let it touch and stir you in good things and not lead you into temptaion. Music in and of itself is not bad and has been around since the beginning of creation. Listen to the birds and you can see this as fact. I ask you today does your music selection edefy and uplift?
During my devotional time today i was reading in Matthew about prayer and was reminded that when times get rough we need to be in prayer. What good does prayer do when it is bad and only gets worse? I was reading in my daily devotional guide and it reminded me that when we pray it changes our focus. We can remained focused on us and what our problems are or we can get on our knees and focus on the Lord and his ability to handle our problems without our help. Humble yourself and go to the Lord. Problems of this world are nothing when you are talking to the creator of this world. Lets have a focus shift in our hearts and get back to focusing on God and not ourselves in the selfish self-serving society. I also finished reading 2nd Chronicles today as I am on my way to completely reading the entire Bible this year and noticed something very interesting. All of these Kings were young men and even boys and it reminded me that the youth are not the future of the Church they are the church lets start teaching our young people how to be effective church members for today and for the future. We have an obligation to teach them so the church can always be ran effectively and according to God's will and not our own.
I look out at our country and people are busier and busier. The hustle and bustle of this fast paced lifestyle is very draining as a result I see more and more people taking their only day off Sunday as a day for themselves. This trend is frightening to me I feel like we are on a slippery slope during this time. I was reading about the nation of Israel in 2 Chronicles today about the King Josiah. Israel had neglected the Lord's house for over 200 years and it is found in shambles. Buried in the rubble is found the Word of God and it has to be dusted off and then read. How many of our Bibles are on a shelf, in the back seat of a car, or in our pew at church? It is time we get back to the basics of Christianity and open up our Bibles read them and study them, pray for our country and our churches, get back into fellowship with God first then His local New Testament Church. Sunday is a day that we celebrate Jesus Christ the first fruits and our sacrifice. What better place to be than in the house of the Lord. You give God back what is his and he will provide you the rest and relaxation you need somewhere else. Put God first in our lives and humble ourselves before him and He will handle the stress and hustle and bustle this life has to offer.
What a great God we serve. Was able to wake up this morning look out my bedroom window and watch birds build a nest in our bird house. Saw the dogs laying in the sun and the morning flowers in bloom. Was able to get my bible reading done early and enjoyed a great day and then tonight my Cowboys drafted a great cornerback what a great day. The birds and trees and wonderful weather God is amazing.