I was just thinking the other day about what a great debt I owe to the Lord.
In this world we have debts that can be repaid over a period of time, but in our spiritual lives we have a debt that I do not believe that can ever be repaid, a debt that was paid by Christ.
And all he asks in return is our lives, to live our lives to follow Him. It sounded like such a simple task when we were asked to commit our lives to Him through baptism. That all we had to do was do everything to glorify Him. And then we realize that we are not perfect and we sin against Him often. But those sins are erased becuase of the Blood of Christ.
We are to live our lives to the best of our ability. Our sins and faults sometimes get in our way but sometimes its nice to know that we have the hope of heaven when we go to God in prayer. It should not give us an excuse to sin, we should try our hardest not to, we should do our best to "take up our cross" and follow Christ.
All we were asked was to follow Christ. Let us do that today and forever.
One thing I will say in light of the Popes death is that he had a zeal to bring people to the Lord. A zeal that I want in my life. I wish there was a position for me to take where I could travel the world and teach the world and them be receptive of it. To touch the hearts of millions and never once think of myself.
I have to admire the man, but he was just that, a man. I admire our Lord and Savior much more. He gave up heaven for a few years and came down here to bring us salvation, no man can ever say that he did that. Over the years he has touched the lives of millions and people remember His death every Sunday. He died to set us free, to give us the hope to see Him and thank Him and live our lives for Him.
I will never pay off the debt I owe to the Lord, I can never do as much as He has done for me. But I am sure going to try my hardest to be His child in all that I do. I am His servant, on the day I was baptized I became His. I am no longer alone in my life ever again, the Lord will always be there when I need Him.
Never will I leave you, nor will I forsake you.
What are yours?
My perception of what the religion is that I grew up in is changing every day. Things are being brought to my attention that I cannot just ignore. I have my convictions and I have my hot button issues I stand up for when need be.
I believe that calling someone a fag who is a homosexual is wrong.
I believe that judging someone someones beliefs by where they come from is wrong
I believe stereotyping is wrong
I believe predjudice is wrong
I believe that God sees us all as His children, no matter how little or big. That doesn't mean we all accept God as our Father. Some of us are still in the petty rebellion stage and others have compleatly shunned Him and His word. Turning their backs on Him becuase some of HIs commandments are to harsh.
I believe that using curse words is wrong becuase it gives the world the perception that we are exactly the same when we are not.
I believe that alot of people lump all Churches of Christ in the same bin, that we couldn't possibly believe the right thing and that we are the only ones who are right and everyone else is going to hell. And I believe this lumping is wrong.
I believe that God sent His Son to die for us and that I can spend my whole life from beginning to end trying to repay that debt and it will never be enough for me and that its only by Jesus death that I have hope of spending eternity with him in heaven.
I believe that Jesus is both God and Man.
I believe that there are things in the Bible that we will not be able to understand compleatly until the day of Judgement.
I believe that denying someone food and water becuase people think, and dont know for a fact, that someone is brain dead is wrong.
I believe abortion is wrong.
I believe that when someone asks for forgiveness of their sins that it should be given to them. God wipes the slate clean, we should too.
I believe in the Indwelling of the Holy Spirit. I cannot get around the passage that talks about the body being the temple of the Holy Spirit, and especially Acts 2:38. I can't pinpoint a time in the scriptures where the Holy Spirit stopped being given. ONe thing I will say though is that I believe that the Indwelling and Spiritual gifts are two seperate things.
I believe that 1 Cor 11 talks about a seperate covering for a woman to wear. And I believe that holding this issue as a fellowship issue is wrong.
I believe that the only book we need to ge through our lives is the Bible and everything else is useless. God isnt going to ask us what our favorite quote from Lord of the Rings is on Judgement day.
It seems to me that there has been a movement in the Church as of late against the world of psychology. Making the argument that we are to go to members of our local congregation or other brethren to talk about things when they go wrong.
Well what if the things that happened are so tramatic that our other brethren don't know how to handle it? Like rape, or molestation, or even seeing someone die. Yes, we are to trust in Him with all of our hearts and lean not on our own understanding. And sometimes, yes, just talking about things make it better but there are those things that follow you for the rest of your life becuase no one really on this earth seems to understand. Are we to keep it inside? Never let anyone know about it? I am not sure thats what God meant about trusting Him to take care of your burdens. I beleive just like patience, closure needs to be something we strive for but we have to work on it as well. And sometimes we cant find it by ourselves. Your not going to go to your fellow brethren when you are bleeding internally, sure you can tell them about it, but when they reccomend going to the doctor.. Go. If you have just seen someone die and you have prayed about it and prayed about it and you still cannot get that picture out of your head and you go talk to someone at your congregation, I'm pretty sure, unless they have been there.. they might reccomend getting help. And there should not be any shame in that.
We are afraid that the psych world is going to give us a pill to get better or give us bad information like hate our parents when we are commanded to love them. What I dont think is realized is that not all of them are like that. There is something about talking to someone outside of the situation and your usual "ring" of friends that helps with closure. And sometimes they can offer you advice you never thought of because they are trained to do that, that is their job. All Psychologists are not evil people.
Your first line of defense should be God, I'm not saying walk away with Him and never bring Him your problems. But also don't make them internal, and those of you who are listening to someone who has just been through something horrible. Do not judge them. Dont. Remember that you may be in their position one day and need someone to talk to who at least tries to understand. Christians are not immune to bad things happening to them.
IF someone was raped, its not their fault and they feel unclean enough as it is so dont make it worse by steering clear of them. If someone has attempted suicide and they have asked for forgiveness, do EVERYTHING you can to make sure the attempt doesn't happen again. Jesus did everything for us to forgive us, He gave up His life so that we may have Hope. I see hypocracy in the Church when we encourage sinners to come forward with their problems and then shun them or look down on them when they do. I dare say they are the stronger person.
You are not helping your fellow brother by condemning them for something they have done when they have repented. Remember we are all human and stumble, often