Tag Archive | christianity

The headless snake

I recently learned something and I find it absolutely fascinating on so many levels. Did you know that when a snake’s head is severed from its body it does not die immediately? If you don’t believe me look it up! (I’ll spare you the pictures. BLAH!)

It seems that because the snake is cold-blooded- it takes longer to die because their low metabolism keeps their organs going. I read that the eyes still dilate and they still respond (not involuntarily) to threats up to an hour after the head has been severed from the body. Yes, a snake head can still bite you after it has been separated from it’s body. When you Google it to see if I am off my rocker, you’ll even see a news story about a chef who was bitten by a head that was severed for 20 minutes. He died on the way to the hospital before he could receive the life saving anti-venom. My skin crawls just thinking about it!

Why on earth am I writing about this? Well, for me, it’s just another example of things…truth…that God reveals in creation.

Satan has LOST. His head was severed when Christ arose victorious over death and sin. So why doesn’t this world reflect that victory? The severed head is still biting. Satan still has a sting and the venom is still deadly.

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

2Peter 3:9

God wants to know you. He wants you to look at the cross and believe that Jesus came for YOU, shed his blood for YOU and conquered the grave for YOU. There is no time like the present.

 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim:  If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.  As Scripture says, “Anyone who believes in him will never be put to shame. For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, or, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Romans 10:11-13

 

 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true:

“Death has been swallowed up in victory.”

“Where, O death, is your victory?

Where, O death, is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

1 Corinthians 15:54-58

While the body is thrashing and the head lashing and Satan is still biting…he doesn’t know he is defeated. It kind of makes me look at that story of the chef who died before he received the life saving anti-venom a little differently. Jesus paid it all…life saving, life giving. Will you receive him before you die?

 

 

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What would I really give up?

This morning, I was deep in study when something struck me…to my core.

What would I give up for Jesus?

No, not like a Lent thing…meat, chocolate, coffee, Facebook. What would I SACRIFICE?

I was reading the story of the rich young man in Matthew 19.

Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”

“Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.”

 “Which ones?” he inquired.

Jesus replied, “‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother,and ‘love your neighbor as yourself.’”

“All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?”

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it is hard for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

 When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and asked, “Who then can be saved?”

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Peter answered him, “We have left everything to follow you! What then will there be for us?”

Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life.  But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.

This has been coming up a lot lately in my study. Sacrifice. We see it all throughout the Bible, from Old to New Testament…we see people leaving their homes, families, and walking away from life as they knew it. Moses gave up Egypt and the life of wealth and privilege. The disciples left their jobs and families to follow Christ. Eventually, that cost them their lives. Yet, this rich guy couldn’t walk away from his wealth.

It’s really easy…sitting in the comfort of my kitchen, sipping my coffee, reading a Bible without fear of being seen…to say that I’d die for Christ if and when I were confronted with the choice. But, would I? For real?

He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?  Romans 8:32

God didn’t spare his Son and nothing is off-limits to us. He gave ALL.

wpid-20150811_083204.jpgI was reading the story of Danjuma Shakau in the magazine called The Voice of the Martyrs. (Aug 2015 publication)  At age 13, he knows true sacrifice better than I could even imagine. Boko Haram entered his Christian village in Nigeria (just a skip across the ocean, folks!) and began to attack without question. They cut out his eye, hacked his arm, and removed his genitals. AND HE LIVED. Do you see that smile? He is quoted as saying, “I forgive them because they don’t know what they are doing. If they had love, they wouldn’t behave that way.”

There was also the story of Solomon Samaila- also in Nigeria- who was told, “This is the end of the road. You have only one choice left: Follow Islam”. When he refused to deny Christ, they doused him with gasoline, ran him over with a dirt bike -which ignited the fuel- and left the bike on top of him as he burned. AND HE LIVED. He said, “Christ, Himself , suffered. The salvation I have in Christ was not free, but paid with a price to save me. So I equally feel I am prepared to suffer in persecution for the salvation I have in Christ, I won’t turn back.”

When asked the question, “Would you die for Christ?” the verbal answer is always “Yes!”…when frankly, here in this country that is such an abstract idea. True sacrifice isn’t a week without internet or cancelling a cable subscription. Persecution for us in this country is losing your job for your beliefs or being shunned by family, friends and neighbors. While things here are just now starting to “heat up”; for these people, true sacrifice is very real. And today, in my study, sacrifice was something that I really started to ponder. What if it wasn’t a quick death I was agreeing to…what if it was loosing an eye with the tip of a knife, having members of my body removed and enduring flames…and living through the pain? Torture. Or watching my children tortured or murdered? Would I agree to that? My answer has to be “yes”. Christ’s answer was “yes”.

God didn’t withhold the life of His Son, Jesus, from me. Is there anything in my life I would withhold from Him? Suddenly, leaving home and family and all my stuff to follow Him doesn’t look like such a big sacrifice.

Lord, help me to truly understand the sacrifice that was made for me. Give me strength to make true sacrifices for You.

Battle in Bowser’s Castle

Too many video games before bed make for a rotten attitude and a poor night’s sleep…and that usually carries over to the morning.

Irritable, achy head, sore from tossing and turning, jaw tight from tension induced grinding of teeth…coming down the hall with hair a mess and a scowl on my face. Yup. I am not talking about one of my kids. This is me today. U-G-L-Y.

Last night I decided to play classic Mario Brothers and I am…well…let’s say “competitive”. All of that jumping and bouncing and fireball throwing, ducking, sliding and battling gets a little intense for me. It is a battle that I MUST WIN. I must get all of the large gold coins. (I must know when to call it a night and put down the controller!) When I lay down last night my brain was still bouncing- but, not just on Mario…it was scattered in a bunch of places. That’s why I decided to play in the first place…to distract me from some things that were on my mind. I think it’s safe to say that my plan backfired.

I didn’t go to bed late, but had a hard time falling asleep. Today, my son is having a friend over today and came into my room at 6:30 am to discuss the matter. He forgot to close the bedroom door on his way out and the dog…THAT dog….grrrrr…came bounding in, jumped on top of my head and started rolling- spinning on his back like he was Bowser himself. As I scream and swat him off I hear it…LOUD and coming through the vents on my bedroom floor…”Let it go! Let it go! Can’t hold it back anymoooooore!” She was playing her CD on the highest volume that her little Hello Kitty radio could handle…at 6:30 am. Wait…6:30 am? What is she doing up? Oh yeah. Today was the beginning of the “dry run” for school. Our daughter has always been slow to wake up so hubby had the good idea to start some back to school morning routine practice so she would be ready for Kindergarten.

Let me tell you…if THIS is what each morning is going to look like when school starts we are all in trouble.

I am restless and embattled. Not just from last night’s sleep (or lack thereof) but, because I just know that God is leading me to do something but I don’t know who or when or how. I keep praying that He will reveal it all to me, but I am impatient and a little anxious and intimidated. I can’t pull a ‘Jonah’ because, frankly, I know how that story ends. So I wait. I know that He has equipped me for my purpose…but, I don’t feel equipped. School is almost here and I am not ready in any way shape or form. Finances ebb and flow and I have been praying for provision, guidance and good stewardship. And I have been feeling a flutter in my chest that I have not felt in some time. Anxiety. I don’t like that flutter. That anxious flutter makes me more anxious. There are battle lines being drawn on many fronts and I remind myself that not all battles are bad. I pray about these things…but, my prayer life has been less than intimate this month because of all of the upheaval of summer travel and family coming and going. Bouncing, ducking, sliding…the battles in life get a little intense at times as well. I need to spend some serious time on my knees and less time in Bowser’s Castle.

I have mentioned a Christian author that my friend introduced me to named Charles Martin in a few prior posts. I just went to the library and picked up what will be my fourth Charles Martin book this summer. This, in itself, is unheard of! I usually only get through one non-Bible study book during the course of a year and that is during summer vacation. I have been reading in the evening instead of flipping on the TV and have been so blessed by it. As I read the prologue I got some really sound, Biblical advice. A word from God in a fiction novel…yup! With all this anxious bouncing and battling, God still found a way to slip in a word to get me grounded.

 “Tucker, I want to tell you a secret.” She curled my hand into a fist and showed it to me. “Life is a battle, but you can’t fight it with your fists.” She gently tapped me on the chin with my fist and then put her hand on my chest. “You got to fight it with your heart.” 

She pulled me back to her chest and sucked through her teeth like she was trying to pick the corn out with her tongue. “If your knuckles are bloodier than your knees, then you’re fighting the wrong battle.”

“Miss Ella, you don’t always make sense.”

“In life,” she placed her finger on my knee, “you want the scabs here”- she placed the other on the cracked skin of my knuckle- “not here.”

—Excerpt from Wrapped in Rain: A Novel of Coming Home, by Charles Martin

I am currently reading in Hebrews during my morning quiet time, but never anticipated that God would whisper during my evening reading, too. Profound and timely.

I can’t wait to read more. I can’t wait to pray more and see what God has planned. Man, I hope I get the message loud and clear and pray that I listen. Fish belongs in my belly- not the other way around.

In the meantime…I just had an 8 track flash back! ha ha Like cutting the rings on a tree to reveal its age,  a certain song from my past just came to mind. If you’re into 80’s hair bands, you will appreciate it (and I invite you to listen to them more online because they ROCK!)

So here it is…Get On Your Knees and Fight Like a Man by Petra

This is my Africa

This morning, as I peeled myself out of the lower bunk in my son’s room, I was so sore and tired. Last night was a long one. I didn’t get to bed until 11:30 pm or so and was having a hard time settling down after our Vacation Bible School (VBS) water games. Not long after I settled into bed, I heard a scream and crying. You see, our daughter was having a “sleep over” in her brother’s room on that very same lower bunk. She was so sacked out that when she rolled over- she rolled right out of bed and hit the floor with a big plunk. I scooped her up and placed her back in bed…but, I don’t think she ever recovered. About thirty minutes later she was crying again, so I moved her back to her room. My legs were sore and twitching  and I had a very difficult time going to sleep. Long about 4:00 am our son shot through our bedroom door much like Kramer on an episode of Seinfeld. “Mom! I had a nightmare!….About ALIENS! Can I sleep with you?”. Since hubby was sleeping well I decided to spare him and escorted our son back to bed with a glass of water. We prayed and I tucked him in. I made it back to my bed for a whopping 5 minutes when he shouted out. I shuffled across the hall and told him that I’d sleep on the bottom bunk if that would give him some comfort and peace.

Water games during the day…Musical beds was the game of the evening. After just two hours of quality sleep, I am dragging a bit.

This week is always a busy one in our home and it’s always a blessed one, too. Vacation Bible School is happening all over the country in church buildings and backyards in a neighborhood near YOU! If you have never attended or if your children have not had the opportunity to go- send them. The seeds that will be planted in these kids will grow for years to come. Hubby and I team up with another couple and some youth to lead the recreation and games portion of the program. With some amount of planning mixed with a fair amount of improv, we always have a spectacular time. (Sometimes I wonder if we have more fun than the kids!) After our games-I could not stop thinking about those smiles, the giggles and laughs and all the fun we had when I lay down last night. (And my muscles were aching in a way that wouldn’t allow me to forget our fun.) But, this morning when I peeled myself out of that bunk bed- it was not the smiles, the lack of sleep or the aches that were on my mind. It was James.

I arrived to the church an hour early yesterday to set up an obstacle course and fill some more water balloons. Shortly after I began to set up, I saw this tall young man walking across the field toward the playground on the church grounds. I waved from afar as he sat down 0n a swing and started to gently sway. When he saw me squat down next to the water pump, he walked over and asked if he could help. I introduced myself and he told me his name…James. As we filled water balloons (what a blessing to have an extra set of hands in that moment) he shared with me about the job interview he had with McDonald’s. He is  a 17-year-old from an area in a neighboring county that has a reputation for gang activity and narcotics and was staying in a home across from the church for the summer. It wasn’t clear to me if he was staying with family or friends. But, it was very clear that- at his young age- he had already experienced his fair share of tragedy as family members and friends had died from the effects of drug abuse. He shared that, as a result of witnessing these tragedies first hand, he wanted to be sure to steer clear of that particular form of bondage. And I pray that he does. James shared that last summer he had wandered over to the church grounds on a Wednesday to participate in some of the youth activities one evening. I asked him if he would stick around when the other leaders and teens arrived to help out with the games– and he agreed. I watched as he mingled with the youth, played football, talked with them…he seemed to melt right in. He seemed comfortable and at home. At the end of the night, James was the last to leave. I asked him to come back for VBS tonight and said goodbye to him as he walked across the field. Please pray for this young man. It is obvious to me that he knows the life he does NOT want to pursue. Please pray that the youth and adults at our church will show him THE Way, the truth and the life that God wants for him in Jesus Christ.

For the past several weeks, I have been engaged in a Bible study called Restless by Jennie Allen. Just yesterday morning…before VBS…before my restless sleep…before James…we were studying and exploring our “places”. You don’t have to be in Africa to be on a mission field. You don’t have to seek out a mission field at all. God puts us in “places” – OUR places. Our homes, neighborhoods, churches, community, schools, and the grocery stores we frequent are all our places. In our study, we looked at the life of Joseph (found in Genesis). It’s pretty obvious that Joseph didn’t pick or choose any of his places. Slavery, jail, servitude and eventually leadership in Egypt were his places. Regardless of the circumstances, he kept so focused on God while in each of his places that he managed to bless and be blessed. He was a light in the wilderness to many. He was a guy…in a place….the place where God put him…seeking the Lord and sharing God with those around him. He bloomed where he was planted. 

This all fell together for me as I was thinking about James this morning. This little county in the great, big USA is my place. Waking up to pray with a child who is having a nightmare is just one way I can serve at home in my place. Meeting and greeting a young guy named James and showing him kindness is shining the light of the Lord in my place. I don’t need to feel that my place is less than that of a missionary in a foreign land…this is my Africa.

Wherever you are, be all there.

-Jim Elliot

Not so coincidentally, the theme for VBS is serving.  I looked up from my table this morning I saw the craft the kids had made last night. “Jesus washed his disciples feet.  John 13:1-17”wpid-img_20140625_080315.jpg

Whose feet will you wash today?

Where are your places and who will you serve in there today?

Cake for breakfast

This week hubby is away on business. I like to keep the kids busy while he is gone to kind of distract them from his absence…if that is even possible. Yesterday, we were with friends all day and finished off the evening with swimming lessons at the local pool. The instructor is super sweet. She was running a bit behind last night, so she invited us to get in the pool and practice while we were waiting. I jumped in with the kids until she was able to join them. What a way to end the night! They swam and swam…then, had a thirty minute lesson afterward. When it was time to go home, they were plumb tuckered.

I had promised my son that next time Daddy traveled, I would have a sleep over in his room. So, I pulled the trundle-bed out from under the bunk beds so we would all pile into his room for the night. The kids showered up and when straight to sleep. (Honestly, I don’t think they moved all night.) I, on the other hand, was not so fortunate. When hubby is away I don’t sleep very well- but, I was SURE that tonight would be different. I was beat! I lay down on the trundle-bed in his room. It was nice and firm and could have been quite comfortable…if it weren’t for the rattle of the metal when I rolled over. When the metal rattled and squeaked- the dog could hear from his kennel and he would bark. He’s such a loud mouth!

Ok…let’s try this again. Just be still.

Squeak…rattle….BARK!

(sigh)

“He will be so disappointed if I am not in this bed when he wakes up,” I thought to myself. “Man, his night-light is SO bright. How does he sleep in here?”

I just couldn’t settle in, so I made  my way across the hall. Ahhhh sleep.

This morning, I woke up and couldn’t hear a thing out of either ear. Oh my. Swimmer’s ear? I staggered to the medicine cabinet for the ear drops and syringe to try to wash them out. Let the dizziness commence. I looked out the window…rain. Again. It’s so gloomy.wpid-img_20140611_091046.jpg

I miss my hubby.

As I went to the kitchen, I caught sight of the box on top of the pantry. Hubby bought a strawberry bunt cake before he left and we never had a chance to eat it.

Yes! This is the morning they have been waiting for. “Cake for breakfast! Come and get it!”

Wow, the excitement was insane- and, yes, the kids were insane for a while too when the sugar from that delicious icing kicked in. But, what a sweet moment on this slow starting morning. I declared today a pajama day and we popped in a movie. Maybe this will give me an opportunity to tend to these ears.

When you wake up in the morning, what do you reach for at breakfast? Hopefully not cake every morning. In our home, we reach for something with nutritional value…something that will sustain us for the long haul. Nope, not a quick sugar jolt that will result in a crash soon after, but true sustenance. Nourishment from God’s Word!

Wisdom, truth, direction, rebuke, encouragement, restoration, transformation, illumination and salvation…it’s all right there in the Bible.

Proverbs 3 reminds me…

My son, do not forget my teaching,

but keep my commands in your heart,

for they will prolong your life many years

and bring you peace and prosperity.

Do not be wise in your own eyes;

fear the Lord and shun evil.

This will bring health to your body

and nourishment to your bones.

My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight,

preserve sound judgment and discretion;

they will be life for you,an ornament to grace your neck.

Then you will go on your way in safety,

and your foot will not stumble.

When you lie down, you will not be afraid;

when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.

Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked,

for the Lord will be at your side

and will keep your foot from being snared.

Job knew the value of God’s word…

I have not departed from the commands of his lips;

I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.

Psalm 19 tells  me…

The law of the Lord is perfect,

converting the soul:the testimony of the Lord is sure,

making wise the simple.

The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart:

the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever:

the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.

More to be desired are they than gold, yea,

than much fine gold:

sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

Moreover by them is thy servant warned:

and in keeping of them there is great reward.

Who can understand his errors? cleanse thou me from secret faults.

Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins;

let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright,

and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart,

be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.

How are we to know what God expects from us each day if we don’t communicate with Him?

How do we know what true wisdom is? How can we keep His commands? Should we go off of what others tell us or get our truth straight from the source?

FEED.YOUR.SELF.wpid-img_20140611_085753.jpg

Don’t try to survive each day on the crumbs you are tossed or that may be left over from a Sunday sermon.

His Word restores my soul and gives me wisdom.

God’s Word is pure… The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.( Psalm 12:6)

2 Timothy 3: 14-17  says…But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them; And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

Meat…real meat. Revelation, application and meditation.

What did you have for breakfast today?

Encouragement during the race

Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.  Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.  And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds

Hebrews 10:22-24

In my last post, I pointed to this scripture and indicated that “how we may spur one another on” was something that God was really pointing to in my purpose going forward. I had no idea that He’d start convicting me to move on that this morning. I am so glad He did.

Last night, a friend asked how our son did in the 5k over the weekend. I told her that he finished and I was so proud of him, but I was really proud of my husband. He is, what I like to call, a competitive jerk. We both are. When there is a competition between hubby and I (cards, video games, volleyball, marksmanship…you name it) we are…well…boisterous about it. Hubby had been training for this 5k and was looking forward to knocking time off of his last race. Competing against himself. When our son decided that he would run with his Dad, they were both excited.They had already talked about the possibility of getting separated during the race and had a game plan to meet up at the finish line. It was all mapped out- so we thought.

At one point in the race, our son decided to turn back and look for me. I was walking with the dog and his sister near the back of the pack. What he didn’t realize was that his sister’s little legs had worn out early (and the dog saw a rabbit that nearly resulted in shoulder dislocation) and she asked if we could turn back for water. I had given her a pat on the back for her effort and we set some training goals for next time. When my son couldn’t find us he turned and started running with the pack again. Because he had turned around and doubled back, he had run further than most and became tired. When my hubby happened upon him, he was walking and looking for a shady place to rest. Hubby stopped to encourage him. He noticed that our little runner had a shoe untied, so he helped him tie it tight. Then, he sat with him on the curb for a moment of chalk talk. They continued the race together at a slower pace and at one point my son ended up riding piggy back. They both crossed the finish line together. WOW! For those who know my hubby- you know how difficult this must have been for him. When I was telling the story last night- I imagined that he had some teeth grinding and some muffled frustration and it definitely went against everything in his nature to stop his race to walk with our son.

…in HIS nature.

It definitely wasn’t his nature that caused him to stop and spur our son on and offer encouragement. It was God’s nature. I am so very proud of my husband for the sacrifice he made to encourage our son. He threw his goal, race time, competitive nature and himself out the window and focused on that boy. What a wonderful picture.

wpid-20140603_080935.jpgThis morning, when I woke up our son was sitting in the living room watching TV. He is an early riser and always has been. He had already made his bed, ate breakfast, packed his lunch and his uniform was on…he was ready to roll. As I saw him sitting there- a nudge from the Spirit. “Consider how we may spur one another toward love and good deeds.” But, not just love and good deeds…toward God himself. I asked him to turn off the TV and come to the table with me. I start my day with prayer and scripture. When he became a Christian in September, he did a morning devotional as well. While he still prays for his classmates in the morning, he has let his devotional book gather a little dust. When I opened the page to where he had left off, the lesson was  this “If you fall, Get back up”. Ok, thanks for the nudge God.

As I sat there with him, reading- I began to tell the story of how I learned to ride my bike. When I was young, I liked to ride my bike up and down the step on the side of our home. One day, one of my plastic training wheels cracked in half. I never went back to that bike. Later…much later, I set a goal for myself. I wanted to learn to ride a bike before my son. Yes, 30 years later at the age of 34- I finally learned how to ride a bike. My son never knew that about me. So I continued….

When I was 11 I became a Christian. I studied my Bible in church, in youth group, on mission trips and retreats. We were always very active at church and in serving others, but all of my “study” consisted of what I was fed by teachers and leaders. When I went away to college- ALONE- It didn’t take long for the slide…the slow fade to begin. I never got off of the baby food.

in fact, though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God’s word all over again. You need milk, not solid food! Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil.

Hebrews 5:12-14wpid-20140603_070841.jpg

I shared with him my shame. It was 18 years before I had my Josiah moment. I returned to the Lord and was brought to my knees. How in the world did I get that far from Him? From the truth? Outside of His will for me? That little boy could see the urgency in my eyes and hear it in my tone as I told him, “Don’t rely on what you are taught in class. You have to spend time with God alone- daily. When you are saved and have that blessed assurance it’s time to RUN…not walk…not sit.”

It’s time to get back in the race.

Simply Scripture: Philippians 2:12-15

wpid-SimplyScripture.jpg

  Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed-not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence- continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose. Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation. Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.