Tag Archives: Salvation

Simple Enough

This is how we know we’re living steadily and deeply in him, and he in us: He’s given us life from his life, from his very own Spirit. Also, we’ve seen for ourselves and continue to state openly that the Father sent his Son as Savior of the world. Everyone who confesses that Jesus is God’s Son participates continuously in an intimate relationship with God. We know it so well, we’ve embraced it heart and soul, this love that comes from God.

1 John 4:16 MSG

peace

What is simple faith?  Even though it starts with the word “simple” it is in fact quite complicated at times yet only because we seem to make it that way.  In our busy lifestyles as life has us doing a million and one things at the same time, we find it hard sometimes to fit sharing Jesus into our over booked schedules.  Sure we go to church and we attend Sunday school class and maybe a Wednesday class to further our “education” of Christ, but do we take it anywhere else?

So often we leave Christ on that cross and we know that we are saved.  We know what He has done for us.  We know the impact His death made in our lives, yet we seem to want to keep Him all to ourselves sometimes.  There are so many hurting and dying people on this earth it would make any Christian’s head spin.  As a matter of fact it seems overwhelming many times.  So we try to give out our little tracts and leave nice notes for waitresses.  We give where there is a need.  We try to show Jesus to others through our gifts and actions.

My husband and I stepped out in faith in church along with several other people and we accepted the anointing of moving into that next step in our ministry.  I am not sure how anyone else felt, but I know I experienced an intense love form the Father.  I felt pulled closer to His side than ever before.  As my husband and I continue to seek God we are discovering that it is easier to share Jesus in the simple things.  Everywhere we go we just talk to people and take the time to maybe just say hi.

When it comes to sharing Jesus with others we just have to go at it with the insight that everyone deserves a chance to meet Jesus and if they say no, remember it is not you that they are rejecting but rather they are rejecting Jesus for their lives.  We have to keep pressing into God for wisdom and strength so that we can continue to move forward for His Kingdom.  We all have a plan and a purpose for our lives and God may have it that you bring one person to Christ or ten thousand.  You might be the one person who introduces Jesus to the next Billy Graham or you might speak in front of thousands of people yourself.

Witnessing for Jesus is a life long process.  We need to just live a simple lifestyle which displays Jesus to every walk of life.  If we preach it, we have to practice it.  If we share the Word of God, we have to believe it ourselves.  We have found that more and more people are just drawn to the Jesus in us and we really don’t have to do much, people just want that tangible presence of God that we carry within.  If you have accepted Jesus into your heart then you too carry the presence of God where ever you go.  Just be who you are in Christ and people will see Him, it’s as simple as that.

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Only Way to Go

Ephesians 2:8-10

        Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It’s God’s gift from start to finish! We don’t play the major role. If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing.

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From the moment we say YES to God He begins our road map.  Wait, even BEFORE we say yes, He has a road map for our lives.  How does that make any sense?  I am still trying to wrap my brain around God, but this is one of those things that some times just does not make any sense.  If He planned our lives out as it says in Jeremiah 29:11 and before we even born at that, then does that mean He knows that some do not choose salvation or does it mean they miss out on their destiny if they don’t accept Jesus as their savior? Sigh!  The things that go on in this head of mine!

 

Let’s just think for one moment.  What happens when a person accepts Jesus?  Well, they are now heaven bound simply because they choose Jesus as their savior.  They also have this wonderful easy button now called grace.  Another bonus is that God will always be their provider, their protector in troubled times, their comforter in the sad times and so many more bonuses here on earth when they choose the one way of God.  Here is where things can get a bit tricky for some.

 

When we are saved by His grace, it is not a license to sin or still do whatever we were doing before we knew God.  Once we step onto that bridge of grace, we should begin to have a less of a desire for the things of this world and this very strong desire to serve God.  As He renews our mind, we begin not to want to drink so much or smoke cigarettes.  We begin to have this desire for solid, pure relationships.  Perhaps we finally begin to like who we are as a person.  No matter what happens to us we will always have the grace of God and He will quickly forgive our sins when we ask.

 

So all in all, there is only one way to salvation. There is only one way to travel and as many of us discovered, the path IS narrow!  Once we finally discover that we belong to God and it is by His grace alone we will get to see heaven, then we find peace…perfect peace. We begin to see that we can face ANY storm in our path.  We find that we could walk the bridges of our lives even with our eyes closed because we have faith in a loving Father Who will take our hand and guide our every step.  Now, isn’t that some peace to hold onto?

Pollinate the World

James 1:22

The Message (MSG)

22-24 Don’t fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don’t act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like.

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Becoming a Christian is a full time journey.  We need to read our Bibles. Spread the Gospel to everyone. Follow the laws of the land. Go to church. Be who Christ designed us to be. Listen to God. Wait on God. Move when the Holy Spirit directs.  Lead by example.  Apply the Word of God to our lives. Work out our salvation.  Help the poor.  Have compassion. Don’t lie, steal or cheat. I could go on and on with things and it would soon be so overwhelming no one would want to follow after Jesus.  How about making it so simple that it would not seem like such a chore?

Love. Simple and to the point, love. Period, that is the one thing we need to be a Christian and this stems right back to God.  He loved us so much He gave us His only Son.  Because of LOVE we exist. Because of LOVE we find compassion for others.  Because of LOVE we want to share the Gospel.  Do you get what I mean?  God is LOVE and His only desire is to LOVE.  We will read the Bible because we want to experience His LOVE. We will have a desire to be more like Jesus because we want others to experience LOVE.

There is that old song that says it’s love that makes the world go round, well it’s love that created this world.  If we could all only grasp that being Christian simply takes only one ingredient LOVE, we could change this whole world for Jesus.  I encourage us all to become revived.  Fall in love with Jesus everyday.  Be filled with a desire to LOVE others even those who seem unlovable.  If we all take one big giant step of faith right now and stretch our arms open wide and proclaim into the heaven’s that we are loved, then perhaps today we could make a difference.

Lost

Psalm 119:176

I have wandered away like a lost sheep; come and find me, for I have not forgotten your commands.
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Ever felt like that one lost sheep?  Like you are just wandering around waiting for someone to even notice that you are lost?  Can I tell you that I am pretty sure you are not alone?  There are so many people out there both Christian and not who are lost in this world just waiting to be noticed by someone.  Who is going to search for the lost?  We are!
God uses us for vessels to do His will.  He knows exactly where all the lost sheep are and He uses us to bring them back to Him.  The main question here is, are we really willing to be sheep finders?  Do we really want to go that extra mile just to bring someone back to the herd?  Are we willing to spend some time listening for the cry of the lost?
God calls us to His purposes.  He uses us to win souls into heaven.  Are you ready to be completely open to His purposes?  Are you willing be led to certain places at certain times to locate the lost?  My friends this what our purpose is.  It’s not to get to the top in our job.  It’s not to become the most wealthy.  It’s not to gain the whole world and it’s desires.  It is all about loving your neighbor and spreading the good news of salvation.
Who can you share Jesus with today?  Do you know anyone who is hurting who just needs a listener?  Ask God to lead you to the lost.  Choose today to set aside the things of the world so that the lost can be found before it’s too late.  God sent His Son to save the world from hell and it will take all of us to do His will to reach as many people as we can. 

It’s Not About A Baby

“The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David! And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.” Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven—praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”” Luke 2:11-14 NLT

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When are we going to realize that this life we live is not up to us?  When will we begin to understand our lives are not our own that our very steps are ordered by God Himself? If God knew us before we were even formed, then He knows the plans He has for each step of our journey, if only we would wake at dawn with outstretched hands toward heaven in complete surrender, then just maybe we could move so freely in Him it would blow our  minds.  Yes, our King of Kings was born in a stable.  Yes He was wrapped in cloth and laid to sleep in a manager.  Yes it was cold.  Yes it was humble.  Yes it seemed all so unworthy for the Savior of the world.  But He came to save.

Let us take a step back and realize it is not about the baby and His meek birth, it is about God coming to this earth.  A God who loves us unconditionally EVERYDAY and no matter what mischief we have gotten ourselves into.  He waits each day at the setting of the sun with arms open wide to hold us close.  He watches as we look past at times what He has done.  He longs for us to seek Him daily, to be sought out in the middle of our busy lives.  He waits, patiently.  Why can’t we see that He will not leave us in our mess?  Why do we fail to notice that He picks us up and dusts us off every time we fall?  His love knows no end.

We will forever visit that manger.  We will be humbled by its power.  However, we need to see past it and into what this birth really was.  It was proclaimed years before it happened. God knew us, therefore, He knew we would need a Savior.  He KNEW we would need to be loved.  He KNEW we needed to be rescued from this tormented world.  He knew. He knew. He knew.  I want to get this so ingrained in my spirit that I cannot hear anything else.  I want others to know this same truth.  He came as an infant but He was always God.

God came to save the world.  He came to show us the ultimate gift, the gift of salvation.  The gift which only needs to be given once.  The grace gift of salvation is sufficient to cover a multitude of sins.  Why can we not see God in that manger instead of a child shivering in the cold?  We seem to put so much emphasis on giving material things during this holiday season.  Spending money we don’t have.  Giving gifts until it hurts.  Buying things we know are not really of value.  Why not just give Jesus?  The ultimate gift of grace and salvation, the only gift that truly keeps giving and it fits everyone’s needs.  The gift of God Himself to a broken world.

I pray this Christmas season that I can stop seeing the baby in the manger and just see God.  I want to just be myself this Christmas and being all about Jesus is just that.  I am nothing without Him.  If He had not come, I would have no reason to exist for I would just be this bitter, hopeless person, unable to give light to anyone.  I long for the day when this world finally gets just who Jesus is.  I await the moment when all earth bows for they have come to see God in His fullness.  Just like Martin Luther King, I have a dream……

Peace be with all of you during this Christmas season.  After all of the hustle and bustle I want us all to just rest.  Yes, sit and rest.  Close our eyes and see God.  To quiet our souls and breathe.  To manage to get our flesh to settle down and see what God has done for us through the birth of Jesus.  My dream of unity would be so simple if we could all see that God is love and love is all we need.  We were commanded by Jesus to love. It is so simple.  Love was born in that manger some 2,000 years ago, not just a baby.  Salvation was born to an unsuspecting couple, ordinary people, therefore it is also for those who seem unimportant.  Let me assure you, you are important and you matter to God.  Because He loves you, He sent Jesus.

This world is nothing without God.  This world cannot offer peace or joy. It cannot offer salvation or hope.  Only God can save us.  Only God can give us the peace we need daily, so my dream is simple:  Choose to Love.  Choose to love your neighbor.  Choose to love yourself.  Choose to love the life you have been given and be content in what God has given to you.  For it will be through love that others will see the Light, the Light they should see when they gaze upon the manger.

Dragging Them to Drink

Isaiah 12:3
With joy you will drink deeply from the fountain of salvation!

My last blog I discussed about basking in the sun and those Christians who are looking for a water source and eventually end up finding Jesus.  Now I want to speak about those who we try to “drag” to the water.  Like our poor puppy in this picture for instance.  We had taken her on a very long walk for her age at the time.  She was exhausted and ready to just rest.  We knew she needed water and just feet in front of her was a river she could quench her thirst with, yet she refused.  We had to literally almost drag her to the source of water so she could get relief even though she fought us the entire way…sound like some people we know that need Jesus or revival?  Once we got her to the water she was able to understand why we were so insistent on her moving and it can be this way with people too.

So many times I would try to talk people “into” Jesus only to be disappointed they did not seem interested.  Take my dad for instance, he told me once that he would deal with this Jesus on his own and in the way he wanted to.  My dad thinks that since he fought in the Koren war, he did not deserve Jesus.  And even though he never killed anyone, he still takes on the guilt of the situation.  I tried over and over to help him see it in the light of God’s perspective, yet no change, not even a budge.  Now I just let him deal with things his own way while I pray that some day he will just decide to choose Jesus.  I pray God sends someone into his life just in time.

Do you have some people in your life that you feel just need Jesus?  Do you badger them and beg them to come to church?  I used to but not anymore.  It is not my place to be the judge.  I invite.  I let people know when revival meetings are and then I pray.  The other thing I do is to live by example.  Jesus said our lives will be a testimony of God’s grace and that’s how we should live.  When others begin to see the God in us, they will begin to hunger for that same peace.  Soon they will be asking questions and prodding you for answers as to why your are getting so blessed.  It’s so much better than dragging them even though we feel they need it.

In conclusion, we need to live by example more often.  We can invite people to church but let’s not keep pushing.  I have several persons I just know God will lay it upon their hearts soon to come to Him to quench their thirst.  We are to be the light of the world, the salt of the earth, not the pushy, preaching, persistent Christians.  When we step back a bit and just let God be seen in us, that’s when God can do His best work.