What is this ready nonsense? God calls you when you’re ready, not ready, almost ready, not nearly ready. You just must be willing to trust and follow. No excuses, you’ll be fine.
i keep telling myself that it’s no big deal, but it kind of feels like an avalanche of rocks on my heart and damnit
my fault, my bad i’m sorry, don’t be angry don’t be hurt, i shouldn’t have, i want this but maybe i shouldn’t— i don’t even know
somehow i always thought that the feeling of sin dying was like an ultra HALLELUJAH PRAISE THE LORD JESUS but actually this hurts a lot. as if i want to hold on to sin, because i do. it feels like just straight up dying. things could be worse and i have a lot to be thankful for, but knowing that doesn’t make things hurt less.
sin isn’t just holding a gun to someone’s head, or stealing someone’s pencil. it’s me not being able to give up what i want to God, for wanting you too much in the present and not letting go soon enough and God is still waiting for me and everything hurts, right i know i know it does, but there’s no other way except God i swear we’ll be okay if we pursue Jesus maybe just not the way we want to be okay but we’ll be okay
There are too many of us who need to hear this right now. You may not be handling it “right”, sista, but you sure as heck are on the right track.
Thanks for being so real and raw 150% of the time. Love you, always.
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
1 Peter 2:23-24
“I found Rome a city of brick and I left it a city of marble.” - Augustus Caesar
“If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.” - Jesus Christ
Jesus and the disciples, along with all of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, breathed every breath under the shadow of the great city of Rome. It was the epitome of earthly power and engineering. Rome had a brutal army of hundreds of thousands of soldiers ready to conquer new lands and enforce the Pax Romana, or “Roman Peace.” The Romans built over 250,000 miles of roads efficiently connecting over a hundred provinces. Roman aqueducts stretched hundreds of miles and fed hundreds of thousands of cubic meters of water into the city a day. Roman law, applied without prejudice throughout the Empire, is still, at least partly, the basis of every legal system today.
“Wars, both civil and foreign, I undertook throughout the world, on sea and land, and when victorious I spared all citizens who sued for pardon,” said Augustus Caesar, the first Emperor of Rome and the ruler when Jesus was born. “The foreign nations which could with safety be pardoned I preferred to save rather than to destroy.” Thus the Romans outsourced the ruling of many provinces to “client kings,” such as Herod the Great. Considered a tyrant and a madman, Herod murdered anyone he believed could oppose him, even if it meant killing every small boy in Bethlehem. Herod was not the first tyrant Israel had suffered under; after many wicked kings, God punished the nation by allowing Babylon to conquer Israel and disperse the population. In 63 B.C., Judea was occupied by Rome, and by 6 A.D. it was a Roman Province.
What does all of this history have to do with the passage in Matthew? The Jews in Jesus’ time were an occupied and angry people. They looked to a coming Messiah, a Savior of the Jews. What did the Jews need saving from? Rome, of course. The people dreamed of establishing independence from Rome and becoming, once again, their own nation. One day, each disciple met Jesus, a man who spoke with unparalleled wisdom and performed miracles of amazing power. Word was spreading about this man. Surely he was the Messiah, the one who would expel the invaders and bring peace to Israel.
“Do not think that I am come to send peace on the earth,” he says. “I am not come to send peace, but a sword.” At this point, the disciples have to be pumped up! Jesus was saying exactly what they expected. But then he shatters those expectations. “I am come to set a man…against his father,” he says, “and a man’s foes shall be of his own household.” Jesus continues to explain the Kingdom of God, and it is not national, as the disciples expected. Instead, it is deeply personal. “He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me,” he says. It was never supposed to be easy. Jesus was not supposed to be the Messiah that conquered the world. Not yet. His Kingdom was spiritual, and he came to conquer something greater than the world. Death.
Today in America, we do not live under an oppressive empire, but it is still easy to confuse politics and the Gospel. “America is on the brink of collapse,” we hear. “We need to fight for our rights, to get prayer in schools and evolution out, to keep the Christ in Christmas, to make America a Christian nation again! Apologetics will help us argue for Christ.” This is missing the point. Our Kingdom is not of this world. Christ did not call us to save our country, he called us to follow him. He did not call us to find life, he called us to lose it. “Whosoever shall give to drink unto one of these little ones a cup of cold water only in the name of a disciple, verily I say unto you, he shall in no wise lose his reward.” The Kingdom of Heaven is not built by the sword, but by cups of cold water.
Reblogging for a few of my dear friends :P
Note to self.
Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust.
1 Peter 2:18
Hard. But with a loud Amen, first and foremost to myself.
Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him.
…and discovering some gems.
1. ”What is your only comfort in life and in death? ‘That I, in body and soul, am not my own.’
“The base, the core, the stuff of Christianity is pursuing the One who pursued you and the One who loved you literally to death.”
Pastor Tim Nussbaumer, Point Community Church
2. I hate the devil, and the way he is killing some of you by persuading you it is legalistic to be as regular in your prayers as you are in your eating and sleeping and Internet use. Do you not see what a sucker he is making out of you? He is laughing up his sleeve at how easy it is to deceive Christians about the importance of prayer.
God has given us means of grace. If we do not use them to their fullest advantage, our complaints against Him will not stick. If we don’t eat, we starve. If we don’t drink, we get dehydrated. If we don’t exercise a muscle, it atrophies. If we don’t breathe, we suffocate. And just as there are physical means of life, there are spiritual means of grace.
3. Servant King, our greatest praise and Your greatest pleasure does not come from our lips but from our daily walking with You.
Private reflection, dated January 28th 2013, at 10:46AM
4. Even after Jesus invites us to come to Him and to have fellowship with Him and to exult in and enjoy Him, in the end He is still the one who comes to us. God Himself, in all of His splendor and glory and majesty, comes before us and, once again, washes our feet.
Have we lost hope, like Peter and John and James? Who will be the first among us to realize, like John did, “It is the Lord!”? Who will be the first to strip down — to take off the bitterness and the pride and the self-righteous anger — and take it all off, like Peter did, to dive into the water and swim like mad toward our Savior? Who will be the first to extend the bread of fellowship and forgiveness to those who have betrayed us, just as Jesus once did for His disciples on that beach, and still does today for you?
Private reflections on John 21:1-14 while preparing to lead prayer in CCF, dated December 5th 2012, at 9:33PM
5. Is it possible to call yourself a Christian your entire life and never KNOW God?
Private reflections while preparing for an SGL meeting, dated October 3rd 2012, at 9:45PM
6. Non-edifying teaching can be identified by examining the fruit. Does it promote uncertainty of/in the Gospel? Or does it promote the stewardship of God’s Word; that is, to go to God’s Word for answers and edification?
Private reflections on 1 Timothy 1:3-4, dated August 12 2012, at 7:42PM
7. William Todd Brown
Who the heck is William Todd Brown??? Quick Google search turns up nothing…anyways, dated August 12 2012, at 1:15PM
8. Worship is an intimate relationship with God. It is a synchronization with God where you hate what He hates and love what He loves, where you’ll laugh with Him and weep with Him.
There’s a famous line we’ve probably heard in U.S. History: “Give me Liberty, or give me death!” but what is the truth? The truth is this: “Give me Jesus, or else I die.”
That is worship.
Private reflections on worship, dated April 1 2012, at 3:22PM
9. If I read my Bible and pray every day, what good is it if it doesn’t bring me to love God more?
Private reflections on reading the Bible even when I didn’t feel like it, dated February 8th 2012, at 10:46PM
10. Speaking in tongue
The word tongue, or glossolalia, appears over 50 times in the Greek NT; referencing physical tongue (James 3:5), tongues of fire (Acts 2:3).
1 Corinthians 12, 14, Acts 2
la-le-o: to speak, not to utter unintelligibly”
A sign to the unbelievers (1 Corinthians 13:20-25)
Orderly worship (1 Corinthians 14:26-40)
Corinthians were lacking in love.
So what IS speaking in tongue used for? Simply put: spreading the Gospel (Isaiah 28:11)
Some of my notes on speaking in tongue, back when I was really into “disproving” the “gift of tongue”, dated December 7 2011, at 6:37PM
That moment when someone tells you the obvious right thing to do, but you deny it like crazy and explain your case, and then they straight up call you out on pride, and you realize they’re right — and there’s no other option but to follow through.