Tag Archives: cheistianity

A Work In Progress

Several years ago, the housing market tanked. Before it did, new neighborhoods were going up everywhere. Commercial real estate was also doing well. Then, suddenly it seemed to stop. There’s evidence of this all over. When you drive through some neighborhoods, you can see just the frame of a house. It had been started, but not finished. There are also slabs of concrete around where buildings were going to be built. Now, they’re just reminders of a poor economy that once was booming.

As I drive through neighborhoods seeing half finished houses, it always makes me sad. I think of the family who had plans to live there. I think of the current residents whose property value is hurt by those ghost houses just sitting there decaying with the weather. It also makes me think of people whose lives are a lot like those houses. They started off strong, but somewhere down the path of life, tragedy hit, and their growth just stopped.

As believers, we aren’t exempt from those tragedies that aim to prevent our growth and completion. There are many Christians who have been hit with something out of the blue, and it simply paralyzed their future plans. I’ve been there. I know what it’s like to think, “There’s no future for me so what’s the use in trying.” But those were my words, not God’s. His plan is to complete the work on your life despite what you’ve faced. He still has the blueprints and wants to complete you.

Philippians 1:6 says, “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished” (NLT). God completes what He started. He will continue to make beauty from ashes. He can take our broken, unfinished lives, and create beautiful masterpieces. There is hope for you. God is not finished working on you. He will be faithful to resume the work and complete what He started in you. Don’t give up yet. You are a work in progress. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Quit Comparing Yourself

My son thinks somehow age and height are related. When he sees someone tall, he thinks they must be really old. No matter how many times we’ve tried to explain it to him and show him, he still doesn’t want to change his thinking. What he’s doing is comparing his age with kids younger than him and also against adults. It might work some if the time, but what I’ve tried to explain to him is that just because it works some of the time, you can’t apply it to everything. Comparing ourselves to others usually ends up creating these inequalities in our minds. 

Since we were kids, we have been comparing ourselves to other people. Parents sometimes ask their kids, “Why can’t you be more like so and so?” It creates a dangerous line of thinking that makes us constantly co pare ourselves against people we have no business comparing ourselves with. What if we compared our singing ability to Frank Sinatra? Or our Christlikeness against Billy Graham? Or our intellectual abilities against Einstein? How would that leave you feeling?

Einstein is often given credit for saying, “Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” God gave you unique abilities and talents. You aren’t supposed to compare what He’s given you you do versus what He’s given someone else to do. Nothing good comes from that. Yet, as Christians, we do it all the time. We can’t pray as well as that person, or live as holy as the other, or do work for God’s kingdom like them. We’ll never be able to fulfill what God made us for if we do that. 

James 6:4-5 says, “Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life” (MSG). It’s time each of us reflects on the skills, talent, and work God has called us to, then put our efforts there. Comparisons keep us from our calling, and cause us to fall short of our potential creating insecurity. Live the life God called YOU to, not the one He called someone else to. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

High Value

I was once told that rich people brag about how much something cost them, while poor people brag about how little they paid for something. It’s interesting how different each of us are in what and how we value things. Each of us place different values on things according to how we were raised or what we’ve been through. I once watched an older lady pour her morning’s bacon grease on her salad as a dressing while the grand kids complained about the off brand ranch dressing she had on the table.

Some of us place high values on things, others on relationships, others on knowledge, and so on. I’ve found that people are willing to spend money and time on what they value. The average ticket purchased to go to Game 7 of the 2016 World Series was Over $2,000 according to TicketIQ. There were many who paid over $10,000. Some of you are freaking out about how much that cost while others are thinking those were great prices. It’s based on what you value. Jesus told us that where our treasure is (what we value) is where our heart is. 

I don’t mean this message to be condemning, I’ve spent serious money to go to a game before. What I want today is to challenge us to think about what we value. Are we valuing the right things? Is our heart in the right place? If you look at where you spend large amounts of money, you’ll see what you value.

Here are some Bible verses on value and treasure. 

1. Your laws are my treasure; they are my heart’s delight.
Psalms 119:111 NLT

2. However, we possess this precious treasure [the divine Light of the Gospel] in [frail, human] vessels of earth, that the grandeur and exceeding greatness of the power may be shown to be from God and not from ourselves.
2 Corinthians 4:7 AMPC

3. Tell those rich in this world’s wealth to quit being so full of themselves and so obsessed with money, which is here today and gone tomorrow. Tell them to go after God, who piles on all the riches we could ever manage—to do good, to be rich in helping others, to be extravagantly generous. If they do that, they’ll build a treasury that will last, gaining life that is truly life.
1 Timothy 6:17-19 MSG

4. Do not store up riches for yourselves here on earth, where moths and rust destroy, and robbers break in and steal. Instead, store up riches for yourselves in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and robbers cannot break in and steal.
Matthew 6:19-20 GNT

5. For physical training is of some value (useful for a little), but godliness (spiritual training) is useful and of value in everything and in every way, for it holds promise for the present life and also for the life which is to come.

1 Timothy 4:8 AMPC

6. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ.
Philippians 3:8 NLT

7. This stone is of great value for you that believe; but for those who do not believe: “The stone which the builders rejected as worthless turned out to be the most important of all.”
1 Peter 2:7 GNT

8. Give, and [gifts] will be given to you; good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will they pour into [the pouch formed by] the bosom [of your robe and used as a bag]. For with the measure you deal out [with the measure you use when you confer benefits on others], it will be measured back to you.

Luke 6:38 AMPC

9. Sell your possessions and give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses of heaven never get old or develop holes. Your treasure will be safe; no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it.
Luke 12:33 NLT

10. Be generous. Give to the poor. Get yourselves a bank that can’t go bankrupt, a bank in heaven far from bank robbers, safe from embezzlers, a bank you can bank on. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.
Luke 12:33-34 MSG


Filed under Uncategorized

The Power Of Touch

Think about any video of a famous person walking through a group of people. What is everyone doing? They’re holding their hands out in hopes that they will touch or shake their hand. People reach their arms through the crowd just hoping for the slightest touch. I remember as a kid, I got to shake hands with a famous person. I said, “I’m never washing my hand again!” Why? Because of the power of touch.

When Jesus was ministering, the Bible mentions that He touched people in order to heal them. There were also times when people wanted to touch Him. The crowds pressed in on Him with people reaching out their hands, desperate to touch Him. Where is that desperation today? Where is that desire in our hearts to touch God? I believe He desires to touch us and for us to touch Him. I love “The Creation of Adam” painting by Michelangelo. God is reaching out to Adam, and Adam is reaching out to God. It’s the perfect example of what our relationship with God should be like.

The Bible is full of examples of touch. Here are a few verses for you to read about it.

1. One day some parents brought their children to Jesus so he could touch and bless them. But the disciples scolded the parents for bothering him.
Mark 10:13 NLT

2. Then they came to Bethsaida; and some people brought a blind man to Jesus and begged Him to touch him.

3. And I will give them one heart [a new heart], and put a new spirit within them. I will take from them the heart of stone, and will give them a heart of flesh [that is responsive to My touch].

4. He had healed many people, and now everyone who had something wrong was pushing and shoving to get near and touch him.
Mark 3:10 MSG

5. Then the LORD reached out and touched my mouth and said, “Look, I have put my words in your mouth! Today I appoint you to stand up against nations and kingdoms. Some you must uproot and tear down, destroy and overthrow. Others you must build up and plant.”
Jeremiah 1:9-10 NLT

God is reaching out to touch you. Are you reaching out to touch Him?

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Restoring Your Connection


A lot of the work I do for my employer is away from the office. In order to be able to connect to our intranet, I use a virtual private network (VPN). I have to plug in a special code along with my log in codes after I connect to the internet. Once that happens the VPN goes to work and I get a message that says, “Connection has been restored.” At that moment, my emails begin to download and I can access all the information on our severs that I need. I can start working again

Peter described us as aliens or sojourners here on this earth. Our real home is in Heaven. We are away from where we belong, yet we still have to connect with God. He tells us that we are to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against our souls. We must stay connected with God while we are here on earth so that we can receive His messages to us. We must stay in constant communication with Him so that we have everything we need in order to fulfill what He has called us to do.

So many Christians live their lives without being truly connected to God. They don’t read their Bible, they don’t pray or seek His face. It’s not that they don’t want to. It’s that everything else in their life seems to eat up all of their time. I know what that’s like because I’ve lived a lot of my Christian life like that. When times got tough, I wasn’t connected and I was overcome by my situation. It wasn’t until that point that I truly cried out to God for help. I had no way out. I was desperate. I asked for forgiveness and my connection with Him was restored.

From that time on, I have had to fight with my schedule to make sure I stay connected. I have to carve out time that won’t be interrupted. If we don’t make God a priority in our lives, we will lose that all important connection with Him. We will wander through this life without direction or purpose. We will be busy all the time yet have nothing to show for our busyness. It’s in stating connected to God that we find our purpose. It’s in that quality time that we spend in His Word that we receive His messages to us. It’s in prayer that we cast our cares on Him and take on His burden.

We are all sojourners. We are travelers through this world. It’s the responsibility of each one of us to find ways to connect with God while we are here. Don’t get so caught up in living on the road that you fail to pray and get into His Word. The things of this world are temporary. If we aren’t connecting with our Heavenly Father, we get deceived into thinking they are the things that matter for eternity. Ultimately, it’s our relationship with Him that decides our eternity. It should have the highest importance in our lives. If you’ve lost that connection with Him, there’s no time like the present to get on your knees and restore it. The power is in your hands.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Afraid Of Silence

One of the things I’ve had to learn to be ok with is silence. At work, when I ask a question, there is often a moment of silence before someone answers. I usually count to 10 in my head before rephrasing the question. Silence either means they’re thinking or I asked in such a manner that no one is clear. Those moments when there isn’t a response are tough. The silence is deafening. It’s as if you can hear each heartbeat pounding in my chest echoing throughout the room. It can be uncomfortable too. That’s why so many people break the silence in rooms.

Sometimes when I pray, God is silent. I ask God a question and all I hear are crickets. That always scares me. I wonder if I have hidden sin or maybe too many distractions in my mind. I wait, but no reply. I wonder if I asked it the wrong way so I’ll try a different way. Still no answer. I’m learning that it’s ok when He doesn’t respond. Being in His presence is enough. He doesn’t have to give an answer to all of my questions. Just because He doesn’t respond, it doesn’t mean He isn’t there.

There are so many times when I desperately need an answer. I cry out to Him, beg for Him to hear me and wait for a response. As time goes by, I become more desperate in my cries for help. I doubt that He hears me or is even with me. It’s like the time in Mark 4:35-41 when the disciples were trying to cross the Sea of Galilee and a storm came up. The disciples cried out for Jesus to help them. They were greeted with silence from Him. Wasn’t He on board? Wasn’t it His idea to cross the sea at that time? Didn’t He care that they were about to die? Didn’t He hear their desperate pleas? Yet all they got in return was silence.

The storm raged on. The waves got higher. The wind became more fierce. Their cries for help grew louder, but Jesus was there with them. He was sleeping in the stern of the ship. His presence should have been enough to give peace in the storm, but they couldn’t find peace in the silence. They went down into the ship and woke Him up. They asked Him, “Don’t you care that we’re going to drown?” We think the same thing when we’re greeted with silence. We think God doesn’t care. In reality, He does. He expects us to trust His presence in storms even when He’s silent.

When Jesus got to the deck of the boat, what was the first word He used? He said, “Silence! Be still!” Jesus called for silence. He wanted it from the wind, the waves and the disciples. He asked them a couple of rhetorical questions. “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” I think He asks us the same questions when we panic at his silence in our storms. I think He wants us to trust in His presence as much as His word. We shouldn’t be afraid of the silence. We shouldn’t let doubt creep in when we don’t hear from Him. His presence speaks volumes. His presence is enough to protect us. His presence is enough to meet our needs. We just have to have more faith in Him.


Filed under Uncategorized