November 30, 2010

A Grief Observed

If you've lost a loved one and feel alone in your grief, this book may be helpful to you.

C.S. Lewis is brutally honest and extremely raw with his emotions towards God about the suffering and death of his beloved wife.

The book helped me a lot.

Lewis helped me understand its ok to have questions and even anger towards God in these situations as long as you have respect for Him.

When everything is said and done God will always be God and we can't make Him who we want Him to be.

We may never understand the ways of God, but we can always trust Him.

November 12, 2010

Quote of the Week

"To call someone a Christian simply because he does some Christian-y things is giving false comfort to the unsaved. But to declare anyone who sins "unsaved" is to deny the reality and truth of God's grace." Francis Chan

November 6, 2010

Grace

I never understood grace growing up, I don't think I was really ever taught it in church or maybe I wasn't listening. I'm reading a book called "Choosing to See" by Mary Beth Chapman. She says:

"Our church taught that you could lose your salvation...and so you never quite knew where you stood with God. I don't remember ever hearing the concept of grace. A relationship with God was all about working hard and being as good as you could possibly be."

She goes on to talk about how she asked Jesus into her life at least once a year at summer Bible camp, just to make sure she was saved!


I can relate so much to this. I was always afraid of losing my salvation and constantly trying to do something good to make up for it. It wasn't until a few years ago God finally set me straight (so to speak) Someone sent me a video of a missionary speaking on grace and I'd never heard anything like it before.

As I was sitting on the floor in my living room, preparing my Sunday school lesson listening, the weight of my sin came over me and in the same instance God poured  His grace over me. I cried like a baby, and in that moment I knew I was saved by grace alone through faith alone (Eph. 2:8) and I would never lose my salvation because He promised me He would never leave me or forsake me. (Heb. 13:5) I finally felt free, free to trust him fully.


GRACE: the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God; the influence or spirit of God operating in humans to regenerate or strengthen them.





Worship

Still reading "66 Love Letters" by Dr. Larry Crabb. I'm finally into the New Testament though. :) In the intro to the New Testament books this sentence caught my attention: "real worship produces real change from self- obsessed religion to God-centered relating." I found out the word "worshiped" in the Greek is "pros-koo-neh'-o" and the definition given is ...to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence; by kneeling or prostration.


Growing up in church I often saw many people dancing, singing and raising their hands during "worship" but thinking, even as a child, that many were doing this for self recognition. I never wanted to be like that so I never really worshiped in church, at least not demonstratively.

Real worship, I'm learning is surrender to God at all times. It's important in our surrender to God to kneel or prostrate before Him, both physically and from our hearts. He is the Kings of Kings. This is a very personal and humbling thing, but should be done for the Lord alone. God did not create us to just worship in church. He created us to worship, period.

Getting ready in the morning, driving kids around, at work, at play, when I feel tired, sick or upset...these are all great times to worship.  I also love Dr. Crabbs wording, "God-centered relating" During all these times in my life its good to know the Lord wants to relate to me and pursue a relationship with me.




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