Monday, March 14, 2011

...addictions suppress our passion...

I was watching an old episode of "Cold Case" online and one of the characters helped me realize something. It's crazy how things in your life can affect your job performance and life.

In the episode, the older detective was a drunk and he let that addition rule his entire life, including his job. He ended up not giving his full focus to a case. He let the appearance of the scene speak volumes. Because he was letting alcohol mess with his life, he missed an opportunity to help a family who really needed it.

How many times do we let our addictions suppress our passion? How often do we let our addictions rule our life? People say they cannot stop doing this or doing that, but can they really not stop? Or do they just not have the desire and the follow through to stop?

How much of this life will we miss out on because we are so self-focused? Who do we miss out on becoming because we don't grow or challenge ourselves? Are you really happy with who you have become?

Monday, November 1, 2010

This freedom...that sin...

"You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love" - Galatians 5:13.

You are free don't willingly go back to the sin. Sin only leads to death and there is no freedom in that. Instead, learn from love.

Why do we willingly walk away from love to be okay with the world?
Why do we make promises we cannot keep and tell lies that cannot be true?
Why do we devour our God's love with our selfishness?
Why do we expect Him to stay?
Why can we not accept His love?
Why must we run away?

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Romans 6:1

"What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?" - Romans 6:1

Who said anything about sin increasing the grace God gives to you? Your sin can be whipped clean but don't continue in it because you now have a clean slate. Instead, remember that you cannot serve two masters. You either serve the sin or God. It's either to sin or to God.

Either way you cannot serve sin and be happy. You will continue to want to fill the ache in you that the sine cannot fill. However, serving God fills that ache. It's like you were made to need Him, to be apart of who and what He is. But cannot turn to God only when it's good for you. There will be times where you have to change because God demands change. A human being staying as is, is a being outside the will of God. Personal growth and character is needed no matter if you think you need it or not.

Making a change...

I've been thinking about changing a lot. About the change I want to see in my life, in my family, in my country, etc.

I've realized that when you make a change in your life and you go back to what you once knew or was, you see things as though nothing as changed. How sad is that? I don't want to be waiting for life to catch up to the change God has been working through me. I want life to change with me. I want my friends and family to change and develop as they draw closer to God. I realize however that you cannot force change, but you can be the person who seeks for that change.

Recently reading in Luke 6:46-49 about the person who follow what the Lord says is someone who digs deep and lays a foundation for his house.

Being a Christian isn't easy. Deciding you want a relationship with God isn't something to take lightly. If you only listen but don't practice the Word, you're a fake. A relationship with God is just like any other relationship. You have to talk to that person, spend time with them and do things you might not enjoy. You sacrifice yourself when you have God as your Savior. You realize that there is someone bigger and more capable than you out there.

Asking Jesus to turn your life around is only the first step. If you don't follow his Word and try to dig that foundation, you are not as "saved" as you think you are.

"Saved" is such a Christian term. To me it's acknowledging that you cannot do life alone and that you need someone else, someone who is bigger than you like God, to be there with you in life. he requires change in your life. Change requires you to examine yourself and realize which parts are still you and which are God's. Working with God to lay a solid and deep foundation isn't an easy step. However, when life has a storm, you'll have something stronger to hold on to.

Sometime God uses the people around you to speak into your life and annoy you about how ugly your life is. These people could be your parents, your sister, your best friend or a random strange. Or it could be God, that inner voice that just won't go away telling you that you need to make some changes and it's not going to be easy.

Making a change is never easy but it is possible.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Giving up...

Since when has it been okay to give up, especially on your family and especially in life.

I understand life can be hard and family can be difficult but what's the point of having these things if you just end up letting them go. There's a reason you're born into your family, there's a reason why you had a rough childhood, or had everything together.

Lately, I've just been seeing how a lot of people have been dropping their arms and saying "That's it. I'm done. I can't handle you (or this) anymore. I'm gone." What's the point of being someone's sister or someone's friend and not helping them? What's the point of being a parent and not taking responsibility for your actions and for your children?

We hear a lot that missions is anywhere but here. I believe that there is someone in your family who needs to be helped, who needs to be talked to, and who needs to be loved. What's the point of sitting around and watching them on their dangerous road if you just sit back and let them go down it? It's irresponsible. You might say but you don't know what I've been through or what my life has been like or how my children are. And, honestly, I don't. But you're that person's father, mother, sister, brother, friend, uncle, distant cousin on your father's side twice removed. If you see a need and you don't address it, you're just as off as the person you're letting live that way.

Don't take this as an invitation to hit everyone you know over the head with the Word or with their faults. No, sit down. Get to know them. Talk to them. Understand them. And don't judge them. It just adds more walls for the rest of us to climb over. There's more to this life than just letting someone else do it.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lest we forget...

Life throws you a sharp curve. It's normal. Everyone has difficulties. Everyone has hardships sometimes in their jobs, marriages, or families. But for others, it seems more often than not right when they balance the scale, write the last check, and sit in their favorite chair to watch the sunset, the door sounds a knock and there's another issue, more trouble brewing. In those moments, we forget. We forget that ultimately the bills, the worries, the issues won't matter. We'll be gone in a blink. Quicker than a fly died. Faster than your beating heart. We're through. It's not going to matter. But, we forget and that becomes the way of life.

We forget who is above it all. We forget our provider. Our creator. Our Beloved. We forget. We focus on me, us, you, them but not Him. We become our biggest concern.

I've come to realize that God is good. That He is solid. That He protects. That He is there. That He remembers. That He knows all and still loves all. He gives everything to provide and yet we take and don't thank. We forget our God.

But, He never forgets you. And He knows the bills and the troubles. He provides and you go on living.

I live in uncertainty right now. I know nothing and I can do nothing. I'm jobless but I work. I'm homeless but I have a home. I apply for work but my phone remains silent. But God doesn't forget. He has provided for me in ways I couldn't dream up and in ways you won't understand.

I have never been more vulnerable to Him. I have never been more peaceful. I'm good because my God gots me (I know. It's not correct). Life is good because God has me. And the beautiful thing - I haven't worried once. And I thank God for His peace. When I say He is my Provider, He is my Provider. There is no one else who can take His place. God isn't trumpable. He is my Provider and He is nothing less. He is the best thing in my life. Life has hardships and uncertainties but God still has life. And He is still in control. But if He didn't have control, there wouldn't be a life.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Taking up the limelight

"There is no remembrance of men of old,
and even those who are yet to come
will not be remembered
by those who follow"
- Ecclesiastes 1:11.

Today in church, my pastor at Doxa has started a study on Ecclesiastes, a study on wisdom. The way he exampled it was great. I, personally, have become sick of the 1-2-3 step formulas to have a better relationship with everyone and their mom. Formulas don't work with a relationship or even with people. They can't possibly factor in human beings into their equations. Formulas and equations work great with numbers and reactions. But not with people, not in life. We're not that simple. And we're not that predictable. (Actually, thinking about it, many people are. :)

One of the things Jimmy said today opened my eyes. Have you ever been sitting with friends and they ask you what you want to be remembered for? What do you say? Usually, it takes me awhile to come up with something. Not because I don't have dreams or work to fulfill them, but because who am I to be remembered. Sure, my friends, family, and any else who'd apply would miss me if I died, but after these people died no one will carry on my name. And why should they? I think we have this weird obsession with how important we are. We elevate ourselves to some big position. We expect people to want to remember us or to be impacted by what we do. Many times we overlook other people because we're more important. I'm not saying to stop dreaming of ending sex trafficking or hungry. Definitely, go at it. Attack those monsters, but don't overlook other people while you do it.

Whenever I'm in the middle of these types of conversations, I always have the urge to say, "I don't care. I'll be with Jesus. Celebrating Him. As long as Christ is glorified by one thing I did, my name doesn't have to be known." But, I never have the courage to say it. Maybe because I don't want the crazed looks or the questions that follow. I wouldn't know how to answer them. I'm still trying to figure what I believe in this matter.

Think back to your ancestors. What's the name of your great grandparents? I don't even known mine. I know my family, especially my grandma Dukeman and my aunts, talk about them often. But I don't know them. It'll be that way with us someday. We're easily forgotten people. But that doesn't stop us from hoping we'll get the one line in the history book.

Honestly, my legacy doesn't matter. In the whole scheme of things, I'll just be another rotting corpse in the ground. I don't want to be remembered or praised.

Whatever I do, may it be for the glory of God. I'd rather have God glorified 30 more years than me taking up the limelight.