Luke 18: 1-8

1 And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint; 2 Saying, There was in a city a judge, which feared not God, neither regarded man: 3 And there was a widow in that city; and she came unto him, saying, Avenge me of mine adversary. 4 And he would not for a while: but afterward he said within himself, Though I fear not God, nor regard man; 5 Yet because this widow troubleth me, I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me. 6 And the Lord said, Hear what the unjust judge saith. 7 And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them? 8 I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?

This is  pretty straight forward parable that Jesus is sharing with the people about the importance of relying on God to deal with those that do wrong to His people.  The part that I find interesting is that Jesus asks when he returns to earth will he find faith. This is interesting to me because he is wanting the people to consider the condition of the world when he is going to return. As it stand now, in the United States we have a freedom of worship that people in other countries can only dream of. What do we do with this freedom? Many Christian churches are trying to pacify people that get offended by the Word of God. Do they not have enough faith to know that it is better to offend the world than offend God? All we can do is pray for them and try to counsel to them.

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Praise Him Always

I believe that it is important to praise God in the bad times as well as the good times. This is something that I have to remind myself to do when I allow myself to get caught up in some moments. When bills are overdue, the money is running low, or sleep alludes me, God is still an awesome God. This is something that I need to work on until God calls me home, because He knows what is better for me than I will ever know myself.  I believe James 1:2-5 serves as a good reminder to this. “2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. 4 But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. 5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”

God is still God when we are having it easy or hard. The key is understanding that God helps us more than we may sometimes realize. Each day we need to rely on God for the guidance to make it through the day. When we try to made every decision on our own this is when we get into trouble. This may not happen every time, but it can happen at anytime. So, my request is this, whenever you pray and it come in your heart, lift my name up in prayer. God can help me in ways I will never understand.

1 John 4

I am sitting in my favorite chair and thinking about what to write for a post today. I have been trying to combine God’s word with personal experience because I believe that it make exposure to the Scripture more presentable in a manner others can relate to. I believe this is one of the reason that Jesus taught to the people in parables, because he knew they needed it presented in a way they could relate to. So I came across 1 John 4 and I thought it had lots of good words for people to know.

The chapter begins with John explaining that all things do not come from God and we must be able to discern this for ourselves. God is love is a very powerful statement for us to know. Our human ideas of love can not come close to the type of love that God is and haves for us His creation. We must be willing to submit ourselves to God and He will send the Holy Spirit to give us this feeling of love we need. Though, the full power of God’s love would probably destroy our human bodies from His glory. So the loving God gives it to is in doses that we can handle.

Our next step is to take this love and share it with other humans. It can be in the form of something as simple as being good to our enemy. Just because someone doesn’t treat us good doesn’t give us the right to treat them bad. I am always telling others to turn it over to God and He will deal with things in His time not ours. We just need to turn it over to Him.

Getting into the Swing of Things

My last two college classes are beginning on Tuesday. Just after the first of the year I will have my Associate’s degree. By the grace of God, I will have accomplished this by the age of 40. When you compare this to thing that God did in the Bible, it’s really small by comparison. However, it serves as an example of how important each and every one of us all are to God. While I may never slay a giant, part a sea, or walk on water (though I believe I could if it served to further the glory of God) hopefully my decisions will inspire someone else. Just maybe my faith can be an example to what faith can do for others.

This is where I pray to get into the swing of things, not because I want God to help me handle my schedule, but because I want God to hep me handle it in a Godly manner. Sometimes, it’s not what do, but how we do it. We must be willing to let God take control of things. His understanding is far beyond our scope of understanding (probably the reason we screw things up so badly). We have to be set apart from so many different things of the world. Otherwise, we run the risk of allowing worldly things to take too much of our attention.

Paul wrote about this in Romans Chapter 12, we should not let ourselves conform to the world. We have to live in this world, but we don’t have to accept immoral things that others do. It all falls back to Jesus telling the people to be a light and a city on the hill. We need to be a Godly example and not just go with the flow. That’s why I believe that we need to get into the swing of things first by asking God to guide our choices daily. He won’t force us to seek Him out, but He won’t leave us hanging when we do.

New Testament

As I told you guys earlier I had started listening to an audio Bible while driving and working.  Now, I have listened to the entire New Testament and decided to start again with Matthew and go through it all one more time. Honestly, I remember something new each time I read or hear any part of the the Word of God. I figure to listen to the entire New Testament once more and then I may start are the Old Testament.

The first time I listened it was out of order, but for some reason it made sense to me. I also included the book of Daniel in with my listening. This time I figure got straight through and make notes when possible. My goal is to retain as much of  God’s Word as possible, or at least get a generalized idea where particular themes are located. (I get agitated when trying to discuss with someone and can’t remember where I read or heard something.)

Anyway, my request is this, please say a prayer that I can learn more and use it to further the kingdom of God to more people. My ultimate goal is to try and show people the wonderful gifts that God offers, not just in the world to come, but the world we live in now. God bless!!

 

Romans 8:24-28

24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? 25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. 26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. 28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

There are times in my life when I question why things have happened and what is the lesson to be learned from them happening. When it comes to these times, I think of this selection and it helps me remember that I don’t have to know the reason. Instead, I need to have the faith that God is doing this for my benefit. I may not see the big picture, but I should have faith that God already knows what are the effects of this happening to me. I believe this where the whole Scripture about walking by faith and not by sight applies to our lives.

As I am sitting here typing this post, my 1-year-old granddaughter has pushed the power button on my laptop twice. She has crawled underneath my end table and gotten stuck and has caused me to have to deal with her several other times. This is a good example of what I am talking about because as aggravating as this is, I am still blessed with grandchildren to cause me aggravation. The joy they bring far outweighs the bad.

So my advice is this: appreciate what we have, keep your eye on the prize, and remember God knows more than we can understand.

Classes, Training, and Working

As I had previously written, my wife has found a job at a nursing home. She is still studying for the CNA certification test and going to her classes working towards becoming an Registered Nurse. So now here her schedule is working five days a week and attending classes on the two days she is off. Currently, here schedule is working the day shift, but starting Saturday it will be switching to second. Even though it is getting tougher, she still thanks God for blessing her with the opportunities that she has now.

My schedule is still working second shift Monday through Fridays and my college work is completely online. I was given the opportunity to take a tax preparation course through a local tax company that would require attending classes 2 days a week before going to work. I was hesitant at first because the course was free, but the books and other materials cost $149. While that may not seem like a lot for materials, when you wife is returning to work after an extended break things stay tight for a while. I prayed to God and asked to guide me in the direction I needed to go.

The answer came in the form of a phone call from someone from their office. They had an offer to take the course and I would receive a scholarship to cover the cost of books and materials. This meant that the only cost on my part would be gas to drive to the class 2 days a week. Now taking the course does not guarantee a job with the company, but it is a step in the right direction. I believe that God does everything with a purpose for those who allow Him to be a part of their lives.

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.