(This is something I wrote a while back but didn't publish. Hope it speaks to you today!)
Hello everyone! I am so glad you have an interest in what is going on in our lives! I tell ya...life has been pretty crazy lately! I was supposed to put a blog on here at least...what two months ago? Sorry Alex!! But anyway...here I am finally!
I will be sharing a lot of myself in this blog. I am a very transparent person who is passionate about what I believe. I will warn you now...you probably won't be reading any blogs from me on politics, global warming or the newest technology craze. There are some things I am just not passionate about enough to spend my time writing about them. Of course, all of the things I just mentioned are extremely important but I will let someone with more expertise in those areas comment on them.
I love to take little things that happen during my day and excavate lessons out of them. I live a pretty normal life. I have three kids, a husband, a mortgage, a dog, two turtles, a bunch of fish...I am a pastor and work full-time in the ministry. So I try to take the lessons learned in my "normal", everyday life and see if I can pull something spiritual out of them! Hope you stick around to listen in on what God speaks to me on an everyday-or every month!-basis.
Today I was reading my Bible while helping my two smaller kids get ready for school. Between fixing toast and finding "lost" uniforms-they were in the closet-I forced myself to sit, open my Bible and go back to reading Jeremiah.
Now, a couple of things you will learn about me soon if you don't know already is first of all, I love to read! It is second nature to me and something I do everyday. Another thing, I love the Word of God. I know my strength to endure this race comes partially from reading His words to me. Therefore, it is very beneficial for me to take that time to spend in His word. The problem I am having today is not the reading or the book...it is actually where I am in the Book! I started a Chronological, Archeological Bible a while back and was determined to finish it by the time I finished my fast. Well...the fast has been over for a few days and I am still about two weeks behind. I am getting so bogged down in the prophets prophesying so much doom! Another thing about me...I HATE negativity! I am a positive person and I like the people around me to be positive. Hence, my struggle with reading this portion of my Bible.
So, I began to talk to God and bargain with Him. "Lord, can't I just skip this part? (whine, whine) It has been daaayyyysss of judgement and doom!! (sniff, sniff) I know I made a commitment but You don't care do You if I don't actually read everrrryyy word...(please, please) Why is all of this in the Bible anyway?"
And the Lord answered me! Can you believe it? I talked to God and He talked back! I didn't actually hear His voice but the answer to my questions came to me as clear as day. "No, you can't skip this part. It may be daayyyyss of judgement and gloom for you but it was actually decaaaddeeess of judgement and gloom for the Israelites. I DO care if you read every..."
Well, you get the picture.
But what I think He really wanted to get across was something I have thought about and talked to others about quite a bit and it is this: The reason God had all that judgement put in the Bible is because He is a God of Judgement! He is the All in All. He is everything that is written about in the Word! In Him is Wisdom and Trial and Love and Prophecy and Law. The Book is about Him...ALL of Him.
I am afraid that most 21st century Christians forget that He is a God of Judgement. We love preaching about love and grace! That is so much easier to digest. That's what the crowds want to hear and that's what makes the saints happy. But God put those words of doom and gloom in His Word for a reason even if we don't like them. He wants us to remember, to realize, to know that while He is a God of mercy, grace and love, He is also a Judge who will one day give us what our actions deserve-whether good or bad. Hey! Don't shoot the messenger!
It's in the Message.
We cannot ignore the fact that God loves us so much that He sent His Son to die on the cross for our salvation. It is a free gift to those who will accept it, no strings attached. BUT, we are also instructed throughout the New Testament (for those of you who don't believe the O.T. has anything to do with us nowadays) to live uprightly, keeping our eyes on heaven and our eternal goal, not letting the sins of this world weigh us down. It is an awkward juxtaposition, an uneasy alliance between grace and truth but one that God thinks about a lot...even if we don't.
Just a little something to think about as you go along your day today. I promise all my blogs won’t be this heavy! Like I said though, I pass on to you what I am learning myself. I just pray today that our God of grace and truth will keep us in the center of His will and purpose for our lives! Lord, show us anything in our lives that is not pleasing to You! Help us realize that you put those weighty words in the Scriptures for a reason to remind us of ALL of Who You are. Let our Christian walk be complete and mature, not lopsided and only half-baked. Help us to judge only ourselves and never others! In Jesus name, amen.