Tag Archives: gospel

The Truth About A Godly Life

Wooden Christian Cross

I have been on a road to spiritual self-discovery for several years now. This journey began a couple of years back when I realized that I had become lazy and pretty complacent – lacking any real spiritual direction.

I have to admit I was a one-day a week Christian. I attended church on Sunday morning but church or Christ-like living pretty much escaped my notice Monday through Saturday. It wasn’t that I was living a life of deviant behavior but it wasn’t one centered on Christ.

I rationalized it by saying that at least I wasn’t showing up at Easter and Christmas only. But even though it was more frequent, God wanted more of my attention than Sundays only.

My sister and I have been reading Respectable Sins together. We have a set time each Saturday to discuss what we’ve read. This week we learned about the ungodly life.

Jerry Bridges, best selling author of Respectable Sins, tells us that unless you are seeking God in every aspect of your life, you are living an ungodly life. I never thought I was living an ungodly life. But if God isn’t in every aspect of my life, it is ungodly –without God. I am learning to include God in everything – every time.

It feels funny to talk to God about grocery shopping or any kind of shopping. But it has made a difference. He is helping me find good deals and helping me discern if I really need to make a purchase or not.

Would your television watching be different if you consulted God before you turned on the TV? How different would your choices be if you consulted God about what you eat?

“A person may be moral and upright, and even busy in Christian service, yet have little to no desire to develop an (deep) intimate relationship with God,” Jerry Bridges, author of Respectable Sins.

We sing songs about Jesus being a friend. Is He the friend you talk to about your most intimate thoughts?

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Stop Complaining

My workstation sits out in the open a bit. I am surrounded by people all day. I can hear conversations, I can hear coughing and sneezing and I can hear people shuffling their feet as they walk by.

All three of those are things make working in an open environment a challenge for me. I try to stay focused and mentally block it out. But I miss the days of having my own private office.

This week was the triune of the things that annoy me. I heard all three on one particular day. I cringed when I heard the cough and sneeze determining not to catch a cold. And I let out heavy sighs at loud conversations that interrupt my focus. I can remember my father always telling me to pick up my feet when I walk. And he would tell me to walk with a purpose – head up, shoulders back. He would say ‘Walk like you’re going somewhere.’

All of it got me to thinking. And that made me think about my walk – my Christian walk. I was reading one of my favorite books of devotions and that particular day was so appropriate. I have learned that those messages are always very appropriate and timely.

The devotional message was commending me for staying close to Jesus but it also reminded me that I have a tendency to complain. OUCH! Nail on the head!

My complaining spirit about my workstation is not flattering or pleasing God in any way. The passage encouraged me to take my cares to the Lord because it will temper my thoughts and help me see things from His perspective.

Philippians 2:14-15 says “Do everything without complaining or arguing. So that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like the stars in the universe.”

I am thankful to have a job when so many do not. I am thankful I live in a country where health care and medical supplies are easily accessible – there are so many places in the world without adequate health care. And I am thankful I have shoes on my feet – whether they are shuffling or not – because so many do not.

Scripture stops me in my tracks and reminds me to be thankful. That should be my focus.

Be Joyful

Banned Words

There are some words I need to stop using. Now before you think something awful about me, let me explain.

I have never been one to use profanity. It never felt natural for me to say certain words. And I don’t hold myself up higher than anyone else – even the most red-blooded sailor who can cuss a blue streak. So when I say there are certain words that I need to strike from my vocabulary trust me, these aren’t words that would cause anyone to blush.

I have always felt that a smart person has an entire dictionary at their disposal and to resort to curse words isn’t very smart of them. In addition, the fact that any word said with emphasis can convey the same message of frustration that curse words do.

I’m talking about seemingly insignificant words in the English language. But still I think in using them, I as a Christian send a mixed message. They kind of get stuck in my mouth and don’t roll off my tongue easily anymore.

I have been trying to adjust my conversations and avoid these words.

The first word is luck – lucky. If I as a Christian say I faith, how can I talk about being lucky. Can a Christian be lucky? Luck means chance, happenstance or fluke. If I believe in an omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient God then there is no luck. Nothing is left to chance or happenstance.

The same can be said of fortunately. Again, it implies that something happens without planning or that God had no part of it. Unless you are talking about the root word – fortune – and you say that God has blessed you with a fortune. Have mercy on this poor believer.

And the word wish is another one. What is so wrong with the word wish? Is it appropriate for a Christian to wish for something? Shouldn’t I pray? If I have faith that my prayers can be answered, why would I wish for something.

Of course there is big, bad four letter word of hate. How can a Christian who is supposed to love have hate for anything? I know that Bible says God hates certain things but He is, after all, God.

I am a work in progress. I am loving and learning as I go along. I know these words aren’t going to send me to the depths of hell. But I want my conversation to match my faith walk.

What are some words that should be banned for you?

Church Every Day

I don’t know about you but music is so important in my Christian faith. It is a means by which I get my encouragement. I am certainly encouraged by the Word of God, but music comes in a close second. 

Right now our church is without a worship leader. We have had a series of musicians and artists come through each Sunday to lead us for that day. We have our regular praise singers and the praise band. And I am very thankful for them. They are a very talented group of individuals that have been able to follow our ‘guest’ artist without flaw. Among those who have come through to lead us, I have enjoyed them all and some I have really enjoyed. I have also heard from a few other people that say they liked some better than others. But it doesn’t matter who is leading on Sunday morning, my worship is every day. I don’t wait for Sunday morning to get my praise on. I have church every day with my iPad and the hundreds of songs in my play list. So if the songs at worship were a little off or not inspiring me, I have my own worship every day to encourage me.

And oh how I love iTunes radio and the different stations. I can enjoy the Praise and Worship station or the Gospel Choir station and the Christian R&B station. They are different styles of music but each station offers great music.

I listen to my music in the morning getting ready for work. And at work I have my ear buds in just worshipping and praising the Lord. I work in an office that has an open concept. We are in workstations – cubicles. But I am swaying and praising God (literally) throughout the day.

We all should have church every day. 

Psalm 100 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness come before Him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God.  It is He, who made us, and we are His; we are His people the sheep of His pasture. Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.

Psalm 34:1 I will extol the Lord at all time; His praise will always be on my lips.