Love

Epitomy of Humility

God the Son left His home in glory, condescending to come into the world as a baby and grow to manhood. Imagine, the one great omnipotent God, humbled Himself, the greatest King of all, being born and laid in an animal’s feeding trough. He came to save sinners—to become the once for all time sacrifice for the sins of the world. It’s impossible to imagine anything more humble than that.

His name is Jesus.

 

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Emmanuel—God with us.

God’s love is demonstrated in the most supererogatory act in all of history—the just, dying for the unjust. Jesus Himself said, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” Then He did that very thing for us. As finite beings, it’s difficult to wrap our minds around the monolithic love of God.

 

Romans 5: 8

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Have a Very Merry Christmas!

 

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Categories: Christmas, Love, sacrifice, Stuff God Teaches, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blood of Life

In his book Written In Blood, Robert Coleman tells the story of a girl who was suffering from a disease that would soon take her life, unless… Lisa was told that without a blood transfusion her death would be imminent. Thankfully, she had a little brother who shared her blood type, which was very rare. The fact that he’d defeated this same disease three years earlier offered the doctor even greater hope for success. So the physician carefully explained all of this to Lisa’s little brother, Dennis, discretely informing him that without the transfusion his sister would surely die.

 

“For the life of a creature is in the blood…” Lev. 17:11

 

“Do you think you would be brave enough to give your blood to your sister?” he asked. Dennis’ lips trembled nervously as he contemplated the situation, but finally, he smiled and said, “For my sister, yes, I’ll do it.”

 

As the two children were rolled into the hospital room, Lisa’s body looked enervated and pale, while Dennis appeared quite robust. The boy smiled at his sister. Together, they watched the blood make its way through the clear plastic tubing as it flowed out of Dennis’ arm and into her’s. Eventually, the smile began to fade from the boy’s little face, and he lay there feeling weak. Looking intently up at the elderly MD, he asked, “Doctor, when am I going to die?”

 

Dennis thought he would have to give all of his blood to Lisa, believing he was trading his life for his sister’s. Because of his love for her, he was prepared to pay that price.

 

When the Son of God became a man, coming to earth revealing God to mankind, one of the memorable truths He disclosed sheds light on that young boy’s willingness to sacrifice himself for his sister. Jesus said, “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

 

That’s precisely what Jesus came to do—to be the Christ, the Savior—to offer Himself as a sacrifice to pay the terrible penalty for the sins of the whole world. “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ‘by his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24

 

Since no other person who has ever lived on earth is perfect, this was the only way a perfectly innocent sacrifice could be made. God Himself had to provide the Lamb for the sarifice.

 

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23

 

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

 

The good news of Jesus Christ has come, been declared and preached. This news concerns the greatest love ever known, and the greatest love ever shown.

 

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

 

God loves us. Jesus sacrificed Himself, giving His life blood to save you and me. God wants us to repent of our sins—turn to Him, and simply believe on His Son, Jesus Christ, and trust Him to be the Lord of our lives.

Categories: Bible, Christian Doctrine, Christian Living, Devotional, Jesus, Love, Medical practice, sacrifice, Salvation, Testimony, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

You Are God’s Masterpiece

Have you ever noticed how adeptly Jesus addressed the issues of life? He always goes straight to the heart of every difficulty, and shines the light of truth to expose the root of everything that’s wrong with the world, along with the real cause of every sin. “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.” (Heb. 4:13)

I find it to be so very awesome to have a relationship with Christ Jesus—His wisdom is beyond the scope of my comprehension. And yet, He knows how to convey truths to each individual person in a manner that can be clearly understood. But there are some qualifiers—things He requires of us before He does so.

 

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He sets it forth like this—“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” (Mark 12:30)

“Where your treasure is there your heart will be also.” (Matt. 6:21)

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.” (Col. 3:1)

We love from our hearts, or from the center of our being, at the very root of who and what we are.

Jesus Christ is “The Truth.”  Love desires to know the Truth.

Love desires to obey Truth—to act & speak in a manner consistent with and faithful to the Truth.

Love remains in the light—it doesn’t hide in darkness from the Truth.

A child of God who has been born from above, lives moment to moment seeking to perfect this Love.

Jesus has planted that seed of love in our hearts—in each of those who belong to Him. We are given a new nature and a softened heart that can be shaped by the hands of the Master. As the gardener of our hearts, our heavenly Father is faithful to nurture, prune, test, grow, and constantly tend that love until it finds completion on the glorious day when Christ Jesus returns.

God continues to impact who and what we are with His dynamic love, which produces transformation in us. Then He begins to love all others through us, for we have entered into Christ, and He dwells within us through His Spirit.

I have discovered a fantastic truth. The more I let God’s love flow out of me to others, the more of His love He pours in! So I say, let His love flow!

 

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Categories: Bible, Christian Living, Devotional, God's Faithfulness, Growing in Faith, Jesus, Love, new nature, Testimony, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The World Needs More Kindness

“Everyone you meet is facing a battle you know nothing about, so be kind.”

That’s the admonishment we hear promulgated. The bible says to be kind. Through our life experiences we discern how well this rings with authenticity. But, I decided to test the veracity of that adage anyway, and the results were amazing. I became inclucated with an awareness that I’m not as informed about people as I previously believed.

 

In my quest to know things, as usual, I learned how far less I actually discern about people. To me, my friends were the obvious choice for study subjects, and I was jolted to discover important things about them I never knew before. It took some dilligent, yet gentle persuading to get some of them to open up to me in this way—to expose and share their vulnerabilities. I reciprocated with my own personal stuff—secret hurts. The blossoming of our resulting relationships has now filled our hearts with the essence of love, understanding and acceptance towards one another. The investigation was small in number, only seven people, eight, counting myself. What I’m about to share is highly personal, so I’ve given my solemn word to maintain their anonymity. That’s why I’ve assigned each of them a pseudonym.

 

I had no idea of the fear that my friend, Marci faces every day.  At 15 years-old, a male relative abused her trust, along with her diminuitive body. Many years later she still has difficulty trusting anyone at all. It hinders her relationships, and because she’s aware of that fact, she often cries herself to sleep. But if you met her, you’d think she was a highly confident and an easily entreated person—trusting even. Marci is kind to a fault, and she loves helping people. Every time she sees me, I know there’s a compliment coming my way—just a really sweet woman.

 

Russell is one of those nerdy guys you’d expect to meet at a gaming convention. The golden thumbed player holds several high score records on half a dozen video games. Kindness emanates from his presence. At the young age of ten, Russell’s father was killed while serving in Afghanistan. The boy retreated into the gaming world in search of solace. Today in his thirties, he seems closed off from people, unless they engage with him first. Then, he’s highly personable, obviously in search of acceptance.

 

Phillip fled from drug cartels in his country of origin, who had put out a kill order on him. He was accepted into the U.S. as a refugee, and I understand he also helped the DEA with information on the cartel. I didn’t know that, and I’ve been his friend for 8 years.

 

Life of the party types, both Marty and Allison suffer from deep bouts with depression and anxiety. They’ve both lost jobs because of it, and both said they feel a need to keep most people distant from them. You’d never surmise as much by speaking with them, or by being a casual friend, as I was: they’re both great at concealing their horrendous dilemmas. It’s not brought on because of any cirmustances—it’s a chemical imbalance, and medications only seem to make it worse. I’m so grateful to have become closer with these two beautiful souls.

 

Finally, Tina indicated her constant paralyzing fear of rejection. As a child her mother abandoned her at age two, and her father abused drugs and is still addicted to Meth. Made to feel worthless, Tina has difficulty understanding her value as a human being. Everyone deserves to be loved, accepted and cared for. But she never tells anyone about this. Silently she suffers, while her feelings of inferiority grow, being confirmed daily by mean spiritted people who only care about themselves.

 

Yes, everyone is fighting a battle of some sort. I’m fighting my own. What if all of us were to double our efforts to be kind, understanding, and caring with everyone we meet? Can we each do our part to make other people’s lives a little easier? I promise to double my own efforts. This world has plenty of hatred, judgment and animosity. What it needs is more love, and shiploads of kindness.

 

(The Bible teaching series entreating us to Join God’s Plan, promises to get good!)

Next time. Love.

 

 

Categories: Christian Living, depression, Faith, Fighting a battle, Good People, Kindness to strangers, Love, Ministry, People, Self Improvement, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Heart Auction

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I’d actully forgotten about this draft for a post, written…who knows how long ago? Right now I’m living my next instructive post. It’s something I do before-hand, to make certain it’s what God wants me to say and share. When He teaches me something I have to really taste it first—kick the tires, if you will. I have no special connection to the Almighty that’s not available to each of us, I simply do a lot of heart & soul searching and spend lots of time in prayer. It always seems to begin with me being really sad and mourning over my mistakes and sins. But God is such a loving Father and always transforms my sorrow into the most awesome joy! It’s difficult to describe what happens in the Spirit—that’s something everyone simply has to experience for themselves. I pray that each one reading here knows Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. There’s just no other way.

 

Heart Auction

 

The loneliest heart sits throbbing in ice

Flotsam in vast sea—I paid love’s huge price,

As crowds press from every side to hear,

The auctioneer taking bids for me, dear.

A bared soul before the gawking masses,

Their love appears as frozen molasses,

Every hand outstretched to receive,

Bidding “Ten for the slave-heart so naïve.”

 

With beet reddened face hung low as can be

I know there are none who want me, as me.

 

From clear blue skies thunder voice crashes,

Hushes all, and all other bids smashes.

“For this beautiful heart I give my life,”

“I’ll sanctify her and make her my wife.”

 

The voice, the Savior’s, sweet Jesus my King,

He gave me His joy and makes me to sing,

Forever He’s now my everything.

 

Inviting He calls, “All who are teary,”

“Come unto me, all you who are weary,”

“All who are sore, heavy heart burdened,”

“Believe I arose, am God, my words and,”

“The life I give is free and abundant.”

 

Your price has been paid, in white you’ll be dressed,

Come taste of His love and He’ll give you rest.

 

This heart is still bare, its beauty to share,

Transformed by the Master with hands that care.

He heals hurting hearts who simply believe,

Soon He is coming, His bride to receive.

 

 

 

Categories: Christian Living, Faith, Love, Poem, Poetry, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Please Title This

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I’m in need of my reader’s help. I don’t think I’ll ever claim to be a poet, though every so often I write something I call a poem—lines with a message. My hope is that someone will offer a suitable title to the following group of lines, which I’m daring to call a poem. To make a suggestion for a title, please comment below, or contact me via Wordpress, or carrier pigeon—maybe a message in a bottle tossed into the sea? You’re the boss.

 

Having read reams of poetic history and didactic guidance blogs, how-to books and the like, I still have no great technical know-how when it comes to poetry. But perhaps someone who is a real poetry afficianado will recognize this type of poetry and know the degree of difficulty in creating it. I do thank God for the modern free-style poetry, which seems to have no reason and often no rhyme, but I’m a big fan of rhyme…all the time. Don’t get me started. In response to me getting stuck talking in rhyme, I worry that my wife’s eyeballs are going to get permanently fixed in an upward roll, as if she’s visually inspecting something up inside her brain.

 

I have lots of favorite poems and poets. But the one poem that always puts me in a creative dream state and sets me to attempting another poem of my own, is: Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner.” He was a poet!

 

I have an intriguing article waiting to be posted, but there appears to be greater response when I post poetry, than there is for my straight up sharing what I’ve learned from God, and what I’ve experienced in this often-times challenging world. And so, I’m injecting this piece at the top of the queue. I am determined to be a blessing to the world—I will figure it out. And, glorify my God while exalting the name of Jesus Christ.

Here’s my latest… poem?

 

 

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Darkness is slain by light

When fright turns into fight,

Where what you once knew reads wrong

Replaced by truth’s sweet song

 

Now you’re free, now you can see

With eyes piercing the dark

Free to roam—yet you are home

Truth has made you the spark

 

Once hemmed in by error

Lies were like prison flies

No more in constant terror

Alary, fly through skies

 

Your vast space is limitless

Love is your impetus

Truth is love that’s fully lit

Glowing heart, now you are smart

Attracting souls to knit

 

Light is truth and truth is love

Must, if it’s love, have trust

What comes from heaven above

You’re so much more than dust

Categories: Christian Living, Faith, Love, Poem, Poetry, Self Improvement, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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