Friday, January 19, 2018
Sunday, September 3, 2017
That is the slogan of the mission organization that first captured my heart. The question rang out, "Do I live as though Jesus is worth it? Do I actually believe that?"
I've recently been reading the book, "The Faith of Leap" by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch. The subtitle reads, "Embracing a Theology of Risk, Adventure and Courage," and it has certainly got me thinking. What if the goal of the church was to promote this lifestyle of "risk" despite the fact that it means leaving comfort behind?
While reading the book I just so happened to be reading through the Gospel of Luke. Consider Luke 9. First we see the 12 Apostles sent out with nothing but what they wore and the message of the Kingdom of God. Then, in verse 23 we read, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me." Finally, at the end of Luke 9 we see the real cost of following Jesus, living with the reality that this world is not our own. After finishing up Luke 9, I needed to sit for a moment and marvel at the way the Lord reveals his heart - it is not just in Luke 9 that we see this call to risk, adventure and courage, it is replete throughout all of scripture. What then does that mean for us?
Perhaps it means the risk of going onto the mission field cross-culturally, but cross-cultural missions is not for all Christians, but RISK is, so what then? It seems as though we cannot be content with lives of complacency but rather be willing to live life willing to proclaim the gospel despite the risks.
John 16:33, "I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world."One other thing has rang out this week that I feel must be mentioned. I now recognize that while I should hold fast to the promises of the Lord, and the coming kingdom, and the knowledge that Christ has indeed overcome the world, there is still pain and suffering. Jesus is worth all, but there is a difference, which I am now only beginning to see, between risk and recklessness. We are called to be wise, always going before the Lord in prayer. Count the Cost. I type these things for my own reminder as I study more on the theology of Risk and the cost of discipleship.
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
I recently saw Furious 7 with my sister. Another blog post described it as a" bad movie with a tear-jerk ending," and that about sums it up. Paul Walker is memorialized in a beautiful ending sequence where the two main characters "go there separate ways," and you're left feeling this false sense of happiness that he is traveling another, better road.
As the credits started to roll I turned to Rebecca and said, "you know what's sad... I don't think he was a Christian." That's all. We just paused thinking about that.
Last night I got lost in the world of YouTube Into The Woods musical clips (I'm a sucker for anything musical related), and up pops a segment from Glee, which makes me start thinking about Cory Monteith. I haven't watched Glee since the second season, but with Walker on my mind I start watching scenes from Cory's memorial episode, the Quarterback. Talk about waterworks. Adding emotional characters who release their emotion through song, it created a beautiful tribute to Cory. But here's the thing, he wasn't a believer either.
Two real life people in the world have lost their lives. While the world starts to feel better with peaceful tributes, and while the franchises they worked for still make money, these two men are spending the rest of eternity in hell. That's the part that makes me cry. Was there anyone in their lives that ever shared the gospel with them?
Is there anyone in my life that I haven't shared the gospel with? Because what if they die too, and while I sit at their funeral tribute, I cry not because they're gone, but because of where they are.
Romans 2 is explicit when it speaks about "storing up [God's] wrath against yourself..." because He will "give to each person according to what he has done," and what has each person done? Sin, for there is "no one righteous, not even one." (Rom3)
So like Paul and Cory, I myself have stored up God's own wrath, and know the weight of that sin. But praise be to God that we need not experience that wrath!
God, in his Infinite love has given us His precious Son, who took on my sin, and experienced God's wrath for me on the cross. Rom4:25, he was delivered over to death for [my] sins, and raised to life for [my] justification. And if you trust in Him, you too can experience that real peace of the hope of eternity with Him.
So Furious7 And Glee together had my thinking about the gospel, but also the great need to be proclaiming it.
Jesus is specific in the great commission in Matt.28:18-20, "Go therefore..." (hmm that would make a good mission blog title) "... And make disciples of all nations." But why we ask? Romans 10 has that answer, because if we don't want any more people, like Cory & Paul, to die without hearing, how will they hear without someone preaching it to them?
So therefore Go! What's holding you back? The utter perfection of the greatest Story? The joy that comes from knowing & speaking it? The love that Christ has lavished on you? Those are the catalysts! Go!
Sunday, November 30, 2014
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Now, as i consider the lessons from CROSS CON and this Cru Preview Weekend I'm returning from, I'm excited for the plans God has laid out for me - plans for His Glory and My good. As I sat after the last session today I was even able to reflect on what my 3 year, mission plan may look like - off serving by 2017! How exciting that is; to serve the Lord for the express purpose of furthering His kingdom, especially with the blessing of my parents.
It's easy to look at the past and reflect on where I'll be in the future, but I've been realizing that I'm neglecting the current situation that God has put me in.
Each and every Christian is called to work for God's glory, through each and every enddevor, of each and everyday. How can I display a missional mindset in the life situation of where I am now? And closely related, but slightly more pressing for me, is how can I have and display a heart of evangelism for the Lost?
I was just reading once more from James 3:13-17, and overwhelmed with conviction. My plans for today or tomorrow, or three years from now, can be gone for life is short and temporary, and so I must ask, how am I working for the Kingdom in this moment? Well I know I ought to be proclaiming the Truth to all I encounter, but I'm not, and in this I sin. Thus, as I reflect on God's guidance this weekend, through the messages, the people and prayer, that which is most striking is my immediate need to be an evangalist. Not the street speaker, judgement dealer, or apologetics greeter type, but the disciple maker type, that I may be a model of Christ my Lord.
This is my mission field right now, and I'm asking for support through prayer as I pursue it daily, for I'm a wreched sinner in my neglect of this, and nose-dive failure when I try it on my own. Thus, please keep me in prayer in the pursuit of giving my all to Christ through evangalism, as I prepare to do the same oversees, and anywhere else the Lord may lead.
Saturday, May 17, 2014
I hate my sin, I love my sin, I hate the fact that I love my sin,I love how He sanctifies through my sin.
I hate the pain as He sanctifies me ,I love how my pain reminds of His pain for me.
I hate how he endured that pain I love that he endured willingly.
Amen and amen - I love how Christ died for me.
Friday, June 7, 2013
It is a Friday, one of the first sunny Friday's near the end of April, and I head into Manhattan for my Demo at ICE, a collaborative public school. I had spend the entire week re-teaching myself statistics and then piecing together a cooperative lesson for a demo. I was nervous, but as soon as I stood in front of those students, my fears subsided. I proceeded to teach the best lesson I ever taught (in my opinion), and then was rewarded with a, "That was excellent," from the teacher who observed me. "We'll be in contact," is what I'm left with, and I walk out praising God, but mostly I leave with an extreme confidence in my own ability to teach. I love the school! I love the kids! I love how they not only are willing to answer thinking questions, but they ask their own questions! I love the calling teachers by first names! I love the collaborative nature of the school! I love their entire philosophy! I think this might be my dream job!
"Oh Father, use my ransomed life in anyway You choose."I cry. And I know.
But Lord, what about the hardships I was worried about? Philippians 4:13
But Lord, what about what I wanted? Philippians 4:11
But Lord, what about the sound advice other's have given me? Philippians 4:8
Oh what a peace! In all my questions and my what ifs God, I'm reminded of the scriptures. I consider how I meditated on Philippians 4 the day before because of the advice from a sister, and I remember the promises Paul talks of. Oh What Peace comes from Resting in the Guidance of God!
I see now how the Woman of Virtue in Proverbs 31 can rejoice in the time to come for God is her rock!
So, I have a job. Next September I'll be working at Evangal Christian School where I'll drive to joyfully each day, knowing that this is the Lord's plan, and His plan is Good.
"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds though Christ Jesus."