Tag Archives: Jesus Christ

How Long?

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How long will you cling to your failures?
How long will you beat yourself up for the mistakes you’ve made?
How long will you hide yourself away from being loved?
How long will you hold on to the heartaches of the past, not allowing yourself to heal?

When will you finally let go of the control you don’t have over your life?
When will you surrender your heart to the One who created it?
When will you ask for forgiveness and allow yourself to be forgiven?
Is today the day?

You tell yourself, “I’m not good enough; not strong enough. I don’t have the faith; the courage; the ability to change; fill in the blank….”

“How could God still love me? Why would he, when I can’t even love myself?”

You push God away, thinking there could be no way, not for you at least. Not today. Maybe one day when you finally get it together. Maybe after you become a better person or when your life starts to head in the ‘right’ direction. Maybe for someone else, who isn’t as screwed up as you….

He could love the worst of the worst, yet you think you’re worse than that.

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.
I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”
Luke 5:31-32

Beloved, if you find yourself in this place, don’t wait another day. Don’t fool yourself into believing that somehow things will get better, or that you can fix whatever mess you find yourself in. You don’t have to carry your burdens any longer (whether they be sin, guilt, shame, loneliness, worry, doubt, etc.).

When Jesus Christ died on the cross, he died for you – for your sins and for the sins of the world.

When Jesus rose from the dead on the third day, it was for you – to give you life; to give you hope; so that you could be forgiven.
And so that you could really live, no longer for yourself, but rather for His joy and glory.

So how long? 

All you have to do is ask Him – for whatever it is you’re needing. But along with that, you have to be willing to surrender – whatever you’re holding on to (your dreams, your failures, your future, your relationships, your whole life) – to your Faithful Creator.

Is today the day? We aren’t promised tomorrow.

The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever.
Isaiah 40:8

2013 in a (slightly larger than normal) Nutshell

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Last year went by in a blur of laughter with friends and family, new experiences, and doing things that I didn’t think I would have done. With only a mere three blog posts in 2013, I may have a bit of catching up to do this year. But we’ll just start with a brief rundown of 2013:

The year started as I ventured back North to Alberta to finish a year of Biblical studies at Prairie Bible Institute. That entire year was better than I could have ever hoped it would be – I formed new friendships with some of the most encouraging and incredible people I have ever met, became part of the sweetest church family, got to show off my embarrassing lack of ice skating skills, had many much needed heart-to heart convos, and learned a lot about myself and forgiveness.

In the summer I came back to the States with the full intentions of getting a job and saving up to move right back to Alberta so I could be closer to my friends there.

I soon found out, however, that when I try to plan out my own way, God often comes along with His plan for me.

I spent the whole summer volunteering in different venues, including doing office work for a retired missionary couple from my church, spending a couple weeks as a sub for the CEF summer coordinator, and interning/teaching at FBC Raytown for their camp/VBS program.

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Although it wasn’t what I planned, it was a really great summer and I wouldn’t trade it for what (I thought) I wanted instead. Rather, I was able to spend time with my family (esp. my dad, who I hadn’t seen in almost a year), see one of my close friends get married, and reconnect with friends in the States. And I was able to learn from and spend valuable time with Mrs. Drown who, with her husband, had a been a missionary in Ecuador.

Since the fall I have been living 90 miles south of St. Louis at a YMCA camp in Outdoor Education. I basically spend my days working with groups (mostly kids) teaching educational programs including (but definitely not limited to): archery, geocaching, survival hikes, water ecology, team-building, Underground Railroad, orienteering, high adventure courses, ziplines, and nature center (snakes, rabbits, turtles, etc.). This job has been really fun and not only have I learned a lot, I’ve been pushed out of my own comfort zone in new ways, like leading campfire and having to address large groups of people really loudly. If you know me well, you know that I’m not typically like that, so it’s been cool to see what a difference it makes even in boosting my own confidence level.

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Looking back at the year that was, I am thankful for who God is and the ways in which He has worked – for laughter, for restored relationships and new ones, for being our reason to hope and forgive (Jesus Christ) and for loving us!
As for what 2014 holds, stay tuned….

Soli Deo gloria!

(il)Legitimate Christians?

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It really frustrates me when people who claim to be Christians live contrary to what they claim to believe, causing non-believers to scorn the cross and tear apart everything Jesus came to do. In my Arabic class, there was a discussion going on about the Islamic religion and Christianity. They (all non-believers) tore apart Christianity, criticizing the Christians for being a bunch of hypocrites and judging the rest of the world. They had several arguments about Christians and why they want nothing to do with Christianity because it’s all a bunch of lies.

For example, they were talking about how the government supports Israel just because the Bible says that those who support Israel will not be condemned, but while they ignore when Israel causes problems or hurts other nations. They also pointed out that the Bible has many contradictions in the Old and New Testaments, which is why it’s all just a bunch of lies, and therefore Christians are just people who say what they want to believe.

I have also heard many more arguments against Christianity, saying that Christians are all hypocrites. For example, there have been instances where preachers condemn homosexuals, then later come out as being gay. In other cases, Christians are the ones persecuting people who are not believers.

This is true; there are many hypocrites and people out there who call themselves Christians, but do not practice what they  preach. This makes it hard for those who are really trying to follow Christ and become more like him. A lot of times, as soon as you tell someone that you are a Christian, they assume you are just like all the other “Christians” out there, making it hard to have a good testimony.

While I do not have all the answers or reasons why people act the way they do, or why they do not practice what they preach, and while it bothers me a great deal that Christians today have a bad name for themselves, what I DO know is that Jesus Christ has changed my life, and that is why I call myself a Christian.

I know I am not perfect (and never will be until I get to Heaven), but I know the One who is perfect.

Christianity is not about a religion or doing good things to make you ‘right’ with God. It is about having a relationship with the One true God through believing in Jesus Christ, and letting Him change you to become more like Jesus.

*Don’t know what Jesus is like? Check out Christ’s ministry in the four Gospels, as well as Philippians chapter 2.

Ultimately, your destiny is between you and God. He has given us His Word (the Bible), and more importantly, His Son to die for our sins. I can’t answer for others who call themselves Christians, but all I can say is that God has changed my life, and He has worked in me and saved me from what I would have been.

Without Him, I would have no purpose or hope for my life.

Questions? Leave a comment!