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Forgiving yourself.

Does forgiveness come easy for you? For some, forgiveness is just a simple act that must be done - and so it is. 
For others, however, granting forgiveness is an act that can shatter the world as it once was. It can lead to chaos, anxiety, and the pain of being distraught. Difficulty forgiving can lead to an unsettled mind. And, none of this is a good thing. 
Forgiveness is not always easy. Sometimes it depends on the person seeking forgiveness, the action that needs forgiveness, or our maturity in life at that particular moment. 
But, what if that person is you? What if you struggle to forgive yourself for the things you have - or haven't - done in the past? 
This is where things get tricky for some people. 
What the Bible has to say about forgiveness. Forgiveness is a huge principle within the Bible so you will find that there are many pieces of scripture that show you...  How to forgiveThe importance of forgivingGod's grace and forgiveness
Matthew 6:14-15 (NIV):"For if you fo…

7 Tips for Fitting More "God" Time into Your Life

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If you are anything like the average individual, then you've likely run out of time more times in a 24-hour period than you can count. And no wonder- it is hard to fit everything you have to do into one day. 
Between work, school, homework, laundry, cooking, other household chores, walking the dog, taking care of your own hygiene needs (if you are lucky to find the time) and so on... We all have different lives, but we all have a lot to get done in a set amount of time. 
So, when do you fit in time for God? 
Our well-intentioned plans can fall through the cracks in a moments notice. Do you intend to get up earlier? Do you intend to spend time with God on your lunch break? Do you intend to focus on God just before bed? 
Unless you have a great amount of self-discipline, it probably doesn't always happen. 
I could say, Shame on you. That's your Creator. He gave you life and you fill it with other things before him. But, I won't. Why? Because we've all been there so…

God doesn't like easy.

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OWN. YOUR. FAITH.
What does it mean to own your faith
In Matthew 5:14, Jesus teaches us, "You are the light of the world - like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden." God did not create us to blend in. If you look off in the distance to a city on top of a hill, you are going to see light. The amount of impact this light has on your eyes will depend on the size of the city. But, nonetheless, you won't be able to miss it on the horizon. 
The same is true when you ask God to come into your heart. He brings light with him -- and you begin to shine. You are to use this light as a beacon for those around you. Just as a lighthouse can guide boats to safety, you can guide those you come into contact with. 
Of course, this requires you to own your faith -- requiring you to stand tall and to be bold. 
Unfortunately, many people find this is incredibly hard to do at times. Depending on your age, your career, your peers, and others, you may find standing up for your faith to be…

You and I.

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I have a confession. 
I wish I could talk about God all the time. 
I wish I didn't have to write about unimportant things. I wish I didn't have to hold meaningless conversations or throw in a smile here and there. I wish I didn't have to solemnly complete menial tasks. 
I just want to talk about God all the time. 
Sounds a bit obsessive, I am sure. But it is a persistent thought that I cannot shake. No matter who I am with or what I am doing, I want to just yank out a Bible and get into the goods. Besides, I'd think being obsessed with Jesus is fairly safe. 
Unfortunately, I am struggling with the fact that (1) It is not socially acceptable to constantly speak about God. (2) Who cares if it is not socially acceptable to talk about God all the time? And, (3) Day-to-day life still goes on and I must live it. 
But, could you imagine how lovely a world FULL of God would be? Imagine conversations based on history and parables and decoding translations. Imagine always being remind…

Where do you want to be?

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One day, God is going to come. 
Where do you want to be when he does? 
I don't know about you, but when it comes time for me to meet God, I don't want to be doing something I should not be doing. Or be somewhere I shouldn't. 
Do you ever think about this? 
I hadn't until I read a book by Pastor Francis Chan called CrazyLove. It was a while back, so the exact details are a little cloudy, but, the story went something like this -- He was talking about how devout his mother-in-law is and how she wouldn't join them at the movies. She finally gave him her reason why...  she didn't want to be sitting down in a theatre when God came for her.

“I just don’t know if this is where I want to be when Christ returns.  I’d rather be helping someone or on my knees praying.  I don’t want Him to return and find me sitting in a theater.” –Grandma Clara

Think about that for a minute. 
There are a lot of things that we do in life that we likely would not want to be doing at that moment, b…

Waiting

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I find patience hard to come by sometimes - especially in more recent days. Maybe it is because I am busier than ever or maybe it is just the anxiousness of the kids at the winding down of summer vacation. Whatever the reason, I often find myself having to step aside and breathe. 
How about you? 
If you are finding that your patience has become MIA, then this may disrupt your time with God. And, well, that is not something you ever want to do.
God doesn't respond when you snap your fingers. He is not always ready to give you an answer when you need it. Sometimes he wants you to sit back, be still, and listen. 
Christina Fox has written a blog on 3 Things to do While You Wait on the Lord. If you find yourself struggling, I think you should check this out. Really. Just do it. 
And, in the meantime, remember -- Good things come to those who wait. So enjoy the time you have and make the most of it. You will hear God in the perfect moment.

Still, forgive.

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Why is it so hard to forgive someone of their faults? 
Forget the petty little wrongdoings or small bad habits and faults. Instead, consider the person who beats down the very wall that was providing you shelter - crumbling life as you knew it. Or, the person who causes pain, heartache, and strife for someone you love. Or, the one who takes someone's life based on one stupid decision. 
Big mistakes impact the lives of so many, whether directly or indirectly. 
We know that we need to love without conditions. And, we know that we each have faults that make us less than perfect. 
We also know that God forgives - if we seek him - and that is ultimately what matters to that imperfect individual, right? Not my opinion or my feelings. And not yours, either. 
Yet, when trust is broken or you feel wronged, it is hard to push back with unconditional love and forgiveness, despite the fact that we know we should. 
Why is that? 
We are human. You, me, all of us. We know what we should do. We …