Tuesday, December 27, 2011

It Aint Easy Being Christian

And anyone who tells you otherwise is lying.

It’s a constant struggle, an eternal internal conflict between flesh and faith that we as humans cannot win alone. Our instinctive nature tells us to please our flesh while the Bible orders us to be faithful. And however much our spirit willing, our flesh is weak (Matthew 26:41). There’s constant temptation, numerous opportunities, and those who are more than willing to help us do wrong. Where are those to help us do right and stay strong to our faith?
I hate it when older people in the church tell us all the things we shouldn’t do. Not that they’re wrong, but they act as if they never did the very same things at our age. They may not be doing them now, but at 50 yrs old I won’t say you don’t have the same temptations, but you definitely don’t have the same opportunities.
As a young Christian, most of the Lord’s 10 Commandments I don’t have too many problems with. The Lord is my God, I have no idols, I hadn’t stolen anything since I was little, I hadn’t murdered anyone, I… well, you get the point. But there’s that 7th one, that whole thing about adultery (Exodus 20:14) at which root is lust. And on top on not having sex, I can’t even think about it! (Matthew 5:28) Sounds like a set up for constant failure.

And in fact it would be if it wasn’t for the simple fact that we are not saved by our works, but by His grace (Ephesians 2:8-9) and even our greatest righteousness would be as filthy rags to Him (Isaiah 64:6). However, we must be careful to not take His grace and blessings for granted. It’s not as simple as asking to be forgiven for something you’ve done. You have to believe in your heart that Jesus died for us and was raised from the dead. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Found My Bible

My car broke down on me late one night. So I had to clean it out when  it towed to the shop. Among the various random items (coats, shoes, etc) I tend to leave in the car, is one of my Bibles. The one I take to church.

So I took everything in the house and put what I needed in the other car a couple days while the car got fixed. Wednesday came. I searched my house up and down looking for that Bible. I mean everywhere…even the places I knew it wasn’t (frig, drawers, closet, under the bed). Then it hit me, I checked the car. There it was, sitting in the passenger seat and the first thought that came to mind was “right where it’s suppose to be.”

Before personal GPS, on long road trips most people consider the person sitting in the passenger seat the navigator. They talk to you during the trip, but most importantly…give directions. But they are not the driver. The driver can ignore the talking, disagree, accidently miss a turn or purposely refuse to follow directions. The navigator can only give advice, but the driver has free will to take it or not. The consequence of refusing that advice is getting lost.

I have to admit, I’ve been a little lost lately. Ignoring the voice. Distracted. Not following directions. Making the turns I wanted to take instead of the ones I knew were right. The more I followed my own directions, the further away from where I suppose to. Luckily modern day navigation systems update with each wrong move so that you’re never completely lost.

God is that navigator. He talks to us along the journey and gives directions. We decide when/if we’re going to listen but until we do He continues to update our route. The John 10 depicts Him as the Good Sheppard, whose sheep follow only His voice and who doesn’t allow any of His sheep to get lost. He only guides the sheep, He doesn’t and can’t walk for them, But He can and does protect them from harm. He continues to give directions and even reclaims us when we do stray.

Manifestation #871 that I’ve grown in Christ: Asking for Directions