A star guided three wise men to find the new born king. It led them through different countries, over hills, into valleys, and finally to his town. The star, their guiding light, led them on their journey to pay homage to their king. This Christmas season ask yourself what your guiding light is. What drives you to the feet of your king? What gifts do you bring to lay at his feet?

Posted in Minor, Questions, Vision | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Pain clouds our perception of reality and hinders us from living the life God intends. A skewed perception causes us to react in ways disproportional to the situation. This gap keeps us from living a fulfilled life, because it hides the true nature of life from us. We define ourselves not by our true identities, but from our pain, insecurities, and assumptions. We become deaf and blind to the true intent of a person, because we have prejudged their actions or words based on our past. This gap can widen to a chasm. Satan exploits our false outlook and uses it as a weapon against us. Spying this opportunity, he lurks through our lives throwing out traps and enticements. Waiting in the shadows with his master understanding of the human condition, he builds a case. Whispering lie upon lie, he enters our mind. He convinces us that most people are out to get us. They are out to hurt us just like that person in our past. Hence why, the simplest comment can trigger a memory within us that sends us back to a teenage locker-room. A single word can take us back to an abusive childhood. The ridicule, abuse, and mistreatment experienced in a memory can paralyze us. It strips us of our defenses and leaves us exposed and vulnerable once again. Fighting tenaciously against that place, we lash out in anger against the person who made the comment. We attack them out of fear and anger associated with a past memory. Our feelings of anger, hurt, bitterness, and pain may very well be justified. Many of us experience deep hurt in our lives.
This hurt may have come from an unmet expectation, from lies, abuse, broken agreements, back-stabbings, or simply from a miscommunication; however, we cannot leave the pain unattended. Wounds will become infected if left untreated. Jesus, the master physician, enters the picture and waits at the door of your heart. He longs to help you overcome your hurt and pain. He wants to wrap you in his steadfast love. He desires you to be free, and freedom in this situation only comes from forgiveness. Forgiveness of the one who wronged or hurt us is the only way to move past our anger and enter into Jesus’ rest. In my life, I have let many of my reactions come from a place of fear, because a simple comment triggered an emotional response in me that was disproportional to the words. I’ve lashed out and hurt others, pushing them away, not because I meant to but because I didn’t know how to handle the feelings inside of me. I operated from an identity of insecurity and pain rather than confidence and joy. The heavenly trinity adores you and wants you to be free from the pain of a fallen world, but you must first open your heart to them. I challenge you to search your heart. Ask God to reveal to you areas of improper response in your life. Ask him to walk with you down the path of your life’s journey and point out areas of great sadness. These areas often hold keys to finding healing. They are places that God can speak to and begin to reshape who you think you are. As a man thinks in his heart, so he is.1

  1. Proverbs 23:7, KJV
Posted in Christian Ethos, Christian Living, Identity | Tagged , , , , , , | 2 Comments

We often call God our creator and rightly so, but he chose to take it a step further, a fathom deeper. He made us not only his creations or his servants, but his friends1 and his children.2 In God’s master plan, human beings have always been the point. I struggled for a long time with Eden. If God made everything perfect, then why did sin enter? If we would have been perfect, then obviously we wouldn’t have made the choice we did. However, what if our definition of perfection is incorrect? We’re assuming perfection means nothing can go wrong. What if perfection, in God’s eyes, means we have full ability to go horribly wrong? What if our very ability to choose is what makes us perfect?

Let’s look at it another way. We all know that God is love,3 so what are the characteristics of love? What does love desire? “Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”4 What if our creation and relationship with God are found entirely within these qualities? God created us with the ability to choose, because “it [love] does not insist on its own way”. If God truly loves us,5 then we had to be created with an ability to choose, or in a more positive spin, we were created with the ability to choose precisely because God loves us. Therefore, I conclude either we were created perfect and perfection includes the ability to choose imperfection or we simply weren’t created perfect.6 Either way, we still find a God who loves us–deeply, intimately, passionately.

  1. John 15:15
  2. Galatians 4:7
  3. 1 John 4:8, 16
  4. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8, ESV
  5. John 3:16
  6. I’m sure we could talk for hours about this, but it isn’t my primary purpose here. I am, however, willing to do so.
Posted in Christian Ethos, Christian Living, Christian Theology | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on The Choice of Love

Page 1 of 1312310Last »