Posts Tagged ‘christian’

1.  Has been born again.

This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind, Having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. (Ephesians 4:17-19)

2.  Is developing a relationship with Jesus.

But you have not so learned Christ; If so be that you have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: (Ephesians 4:20-21)

3.  Recognizes the old nature and crucifies it.

That you put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; (Ephesians 4:22)

4.  Learns to ask the question: “What am I thinking?”

And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; (Ephesians 4:23)

5.  Seeks to change into a righteous and holy person.

And that you put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. (Ephesians 4:24)

6.  Stops lying and tells the truth.

Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor: for we are members one of another. (Ephesians 4:25)

7.  Controls his angry emotion.

Be angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: (Ephesians 4:26)

8.  Doesn’t harbor bitterness.

Be angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: (Ephesians 4:26)

9.  Denies the devil opportunities to make a fool of him.

Neither agive place to the devil. (Ephesians 4:27)

10.  Stops stealing and works hard.

Let him that stole, steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needs. (Ephesians 4:28)

11.  Shares what God has given him.

Let him that stole, steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needs. (Ephesians 4:28)

12. Uses his tongue to help and heal, not to hurt.

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. (Ephesians 4:29)

13. Protects the Holy Spirit from pain.

And grieve not the Holy Spirit of God, whereby you are sealed unto the day of redemption. (Ephesians 4:30)

14. Protects people from pain and hurt.

Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamor, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: (Ephesians 4:31)

15. Forgives because he has been forgiven.

And be you kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you. (Ephesians 4:32)

16. Loves his Father for adopting him.

Be, therefore, followers of God, as dear children; (Ephesians 5:1)

17. Has a lifestyle of service motivated in love.

And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us, and has given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savor. (Ephesians 5:2)

18. Guards against sexual sin and is pure.

But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becomes saints; (Ephesians 5:3)

19. Avoids base humor and dirty jokes.

Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. (Ephesians 5:4)

20. Takes God’s warnings seriously.

For this you know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things comes rthe wrath of God upon sthe children of disobedience. Be not  therefore partakers with them. (Ephesians 5:5-7)

21. Wakes up, smells the coffee and lives in the Light.

For you were sometimes darkness, but now are you light in the Lord: walk as children of light: For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth; Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever does make manifest is light. Wherefore he says, Awake you that sleeps, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give you light. See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. (Ephesians 5:8-17)

22. Doesn’t drink or get drunk, do drugs, or live wild.

And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; (Ephesians 5:18)

23. Follows the Holy Spirit and pursues a spiritual life.

Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; (Ephesians 5:19)

24. Considers others first, especially his wife.

Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God. Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loves his wife loves himself. For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourishes and cherishes it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh. This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church. Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband. (Ephesians 5:21-33)

Over the weekend, a small group of guys and a staff member had gone to Guymon, OK to do a couple of storefronts for fund raising purposes. While they were there they met up with a gentleman that had come through the Teen Challenge center that I work at. Jack (not his real name) didn’t graduate as he decided to leave early.

Jack invited them to go out to dinner. While there, he told them some of the things that had happened to him after he left the program. Jack told them that he had to go jail for 30 days for not completing the program. While he was there, he had the opportunity to witness to a gentleman. This gentleman that he was witnessing to had come to the Lord. They both read the Bible everyday.

Jack was also able to go to his mother’s grave and forgive her for what she had done to him. Jack was also for the first time in a long time, able to call her MOM. That is the power of God in Jack’s life.

I don’t often hear stories like this. It is good to hear that while a student leaves early it doesn’t mean that they didn’t get anything. Sometimes, God puts a person only for short time and not for the full time that they agreed with when they enter the program. The successes are less if they don’t go through the whole program. But every once in a while stories like this do happen.

When I was at Cape Girardeau, MO a similar thing happened. During the apple picking season the police showed up to pick up one of the other guys. Before I go on let me relate to you how this came about.

The students that come into Teen Challenge are usually here for one of three things. Bear in mind that it is not a program for just teenagers. Men and Women also need help. Anyway, the students come in for one of three different reasons. They are family ordered, court ordered (which is not our program), or they are wife ordered.

This guy had come in due to court related issues. So to make sure that his PO knew where he was at, he wrote him a letter saying that he was in the Misssouri Teen Challenge. Which, then meant that his PO sent the police for violation of his parole by leaving the state he was supposed to be in.

Anyway, Dave (not real name) was picked up by the police while he was out picking apples. The whole time he had a peace about having to go to jail. While he was there, Dave witnessed to every person that they put in the cell with him.

He had a “revolving door” for the cell that he was in. Every day he had a cell mate. Every day that person was gotten and another person was brought in. The last guy that was brought to that cell, came to the saving knowledge of Christ.  Dave had to go to jail in order to witness to this guy. God had tested him to make sure that he would do so with others that came in before the “main event”.

Dave was brought back after that. He said that the whole time he was feeling peaceful about where he was at. He also knew when he was going to return to the center. He knew that he had to go jail for a week for just that one moment.

What is the moral of both of these incidents. It doesn’t matter what happens. If you are in God’s will, He will cause good things to happen when it seems that things are going south.

Both of these men followed this command of Jesus:

Mark 16:15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.”

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

Really. Does the title even have to be said or asked? Unfortunately, I think it does. All too often we see images in movies, videos, or those who think that they are saying what they are supposed to be saying. At least in their eyes. For instance look at this picture. The message is quite obvious. There is no way to misconstrue what is being said.

Now my question is this, if God hates fags, then what did He come here for? Why did He live like us and die? If God hates certain groups or certain people, then would that not make what He did useless? Now I don’t know what Bible the church who pickets with signs like these are using, but I think that there are a few verses that have been taken out of them.

For instance the Bible I use says this:

1 John 4:16 And we know and have believed the love which God hath in us. God is love; and he that abideth in love abideth in God, and God abideth in him.

Is this missing in some Bibles? If so this needs to pointed out so the publishers can get it fixed. Because if God is love and a God of love then where is the hate coming from? Is it any wonder that people want nothing to do with the church, God or Jesus Christ? Is it any wonder that we are looked down upon or seen as a joke?

God is a God of love. He proved it. “But God commendeth his own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) I don’t recall John 3:16 saying “For God so loved certain people, that He gave His only begotten Son. That only these people who believeth on Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” Did or would God really only talk about certain people? I don’t think so. I recall the verse saying something completely different. Something along the lines of: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son. That whosoever believeth on Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.”

The word “world” means just that, world. It means the whole of planet earth. Everyone. No one is excluded. Everyone has the same chance as the person next to them. But they have to choose. God doesn’t. Does He want people go to hell? No! Does He force people to go to hell? No! That is our choice and no one else’s.

But for some reason there are those that think He does. There are those that think there is no reason for an army. (Soldiers are going to hell as well. At least to some people.) We can’t draw people to Christ if we are pushing them away. If we push them away or treat them with contempt or even worst, hate, how are we drawing them to Christ. We can’t claim to hate certain and then claim to love God. It doesn’t work out that way. God says that the person who does this is a liar.

I work for Teen Challenge. I deal with people that have gone to church. I deal with people who probably wouldn’t set foot in church any other way. Most of the time it is just plain bad choices that ultimately cause them to cross paths with me. Other times I believe it is because of a bad incident with someone at church that ultimately brings into my “orbit”. I believe that the reason many people don’t go to church is because of the hatred felt towards them.

After Thursday night Bible Study at the church I go to, some of the people went out to fellowship and get something to eat. Towards the end of their time there, the waitress said that she did not know they were Christians. Why? Most of the Christians that she had as customers were hateful. This was one of the few times I am sure that she had met some truly great Christians.

Ghandi could have been truly great as a Christian. But why wasn’t he? He read the Bible, quoted from the Sermon on the Mount. It was because a church elder would not let him in church the one time that he wanted to go in. The church elder was hateful to Ghandi and he never tried to go to church again. It is also telling when he says “you Christians are so unlike your Christ”. You can read this story at John Mark Ministries.

We need to quit hating people or groups and start loving them. We need to have the mind of the one who let an adulteress go. We need to have the mind of the one who loved the sinner while hating the sin. Jesus Christ played no favorites, so why do we? Our job is to bring people to Christ. Not push them away. I do not want to be called a liar because I have said, shown or claimed that someone is not worthy of God’s love. Thereby, His grace and mercy follows. I have known many people with lifestyles that God hates, but I never hated the person. You will never find me being like that. I have chosen to love in action as well as word. Where do you stand?

What makes some things offensive and some things okay? Take a look at this picture. To me as a Christian, I like the message of the picture.

 But I also think that it is funny. Don’t get me wrong, I take my faith seriously. But to others this picture is just plain offensive. What I think is funny is that to what some would consider to be truth, others would consider to be hate or being narrow minded. An “artist” is able to put a crucifix in a jar of urine and take a picture of it call it art. To me this is offensive. But not to the world. That picture showing what somebody thinks about Jesus Christ is okay, but this little cartoon is not. I just don’t get it. 

Why is it that those who consider themselves Christians or Christ followers always wrong. The “world” seems to think that we really have nothing or should have nothing to say. Where is the freedom of speech in that?

We can’t be bold and stand up for what we feel is right. We can’t post anything that allows us to show how we feel about things. But then everyone is. Like I said I just don’t get it.

Many of the things that a lot of people believe in, we do as well. A lot of things that many of the organizations believe in, we do as well. We can talk about those things that we all have a common interest in, but if it is about our faith, we need to go to church. I just don’t get it.

We can talk about Buddha, but we can’t talk about Jesus Christ. We can talk about Allah, but we can’t talk about Jesus Christ. We can talk about this religion or that religion, but we can’t talk about our faith in Jesus Christ. Or to go another way with this, we can talk about Jesus Christ as long as we are joking about him. Or using Him as curse word or in ways that would and should be offensive to many Christians. But even if we do see it as offensive we are not allowed to say anything. Why? We are infringing on another persons right to free speech. I just don’t get it.

The thing is, there are times when a Christian or Christ follower should be quiet. As this saying goes “A Christian should preach wherever he/she goes, speak when necessary”. A Christian music group from the ’80s even had song about “A Christian should be seen and not heard”. The song was basically about how the world would like to see Christians or Christ followers. We should be like little kids and be seen, but not heard. Why am I not allowed to say what I believe? Why am I not allowed to give my views? Why am I not allowed to take offense at anything that I would consider offensive? I just don’t get it.

Please comment on some things that you just don’t get. Be sure to share this as well. Thanks.

 

I am sure that you have asked yourself that at some point. What if I had gone right instead of left? What if I had gone here instead of there? What if I had never met that person or if I had met this person instead? Many times we ask these things because we are not happy with where we are. Sometimes we are happy with the place we are at, but we like to think about where we could be. How different things could be if we just made a different choice here or here. We like to think that things would be better if we are not satisfied with where we are at now.

The thing is, we are the sum of all those good or bad things that have happened in our past. Who we are today comes from our choices and our memories. They have a huge bearing on who we are right now. The way we think comes from what we have been taught or learned. Yes we all have regrets. We all have those few things that we would like to change. In the smallest ways or in the biggest ways. But those changes could very well have a greater impact than we realize.

There have been many stories and movies that touch upon the “what if……” scenarios. The Butterfly Effect franchise, the Ray Bradbury story “The Sound of Thunder” and many others. But from watching these movies or reading the stories we see that changing one small thing can make big changes later. Sometimes it can be fun to think of how things can be different. But as we all know, we can’t change the things of the past. But, we do have control of what our future can look like.

Yes, yes. I know that we don’t know what the future holds. But why should we allow our past keep us from making an impact in what our future looks like. We do not have to let the past control where we go. You may know what I am talking about. We get so close to success, we quit. It seems like we get in a perpetual cycle where it looks like we don’t like success. To be fair, many of us don’t get in these type of ruts. But all to often many of us allow our past to control what we do.

Now this is ok, if we learn from those things that don’t work. Gordon Ramsey wouldn’t be the success he is if he had been successful the first time he tried to open a restaurant. By having a few “failures” he was able to figure out what does not work and find what would work. We need to realize that just because one thing doesn’t work doesn’t mean we won’t find anything that will work. Thomas Edison “failed” over 2,000 times before getting the right filament for the light bulb.

What we need to do is use our past as a way of saying, “This will not work. Is there something that will work?” Then try something different. We need to learn from those times that we were not successful and try different things. We should not allow our past’s to hold us back. All too often we beat ourselves up. We allow our past to keep us down. Ephesians 4:22-23 tells us to forget our past when it relates to who we were. ” You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds.”

Yes this is talking about the “S” word, sin. But it can also be applied to the person we were in our past. We are no longer that person that made that mistake. We have learned some things from that time. We need to use our past to show us that, yes, we made mistakes, but we can make different choices to have a better future. In the book “Soul Print” by Mark Batterson, God uses the bad things in our lives as well as the good to make His print in our lives. That print is what makes us unique. It is this uniqueness that is a gift that God has given to us. It is God’s thumbprint in our souls or soul print.

We have to be willing to learn from our mistakes. In fact, we learn more from the mistakes than we do from our successes. When we fail to make the right choice we are forced to look for another solution. A different way to do things. Mistakes were never meant to be used as excuses to not go forward. In the classic Doctor Who, the doctor was talking to Romana in the City of Death. He said that in order to know where we are going, we have to know where we have been. We can learn from our past. We can’t learn from our future. We can embrace all that is in our past and use that to shape where we are going. We can take control of the lessons learn and not let the lessons control us. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. The mistakes can give us a greater opportunity for learning.

     What is the map? The map according to author David Murrow, is what we as men are supposed to use and follow in our Christian lives. The book starts out like a thriller. With a man searching for a secret document found in the Bible. What he finds is not what he expected. What he finds is more about how we as Christian men are supposed to live. But many of us tend to stop at one point or never begin what Mr. Murrow calls our journey.

    Many of us when we get a point think that we have finally made it. What we don’t realize is that there is so much more ahead of us. We go to church and learn about the love of Christ. But is that all there is to who Christ is? Is Christ no more than someone who turned the cheek? No. He was more than that. He was tough when he had to be. He rebuked those that had to be rebuked. He showed strength of character when it was needed. We are supposed to follow Christ in all aspects of the example he was to us. If we stop at one point, we miss the most exciting part of our journey as men.

    What David Murrow does is show us the three parts of the journey that man is supposed to walk out. If you are bored with where you are at in your own personal walk with Christ then check out this book. You will see that there is more than just turning the other cheek as Christian men.

This was reviewed for Thomas Nelson Publishing through BookSneeze.

Kids in Church

Posted: 12/27/2009 in Jokes
Tags: , , , , , , ,

3-year-old Reese : ‘Our Father, Who does art in heaven, Harold is His name. Amen..’

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A little boy was overheard praying: ‘Lord, if you can’t make me a better boy, don’t worry about it. I’m having a real good time like I am.’

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After the christening of his baby brother in church, Jason sobbed all the way home in the back seat of the car. His father asked him three times what was wrong. Finally, the boy replied, ‘That preacher said he wanted us brought up in a Christian home, and I wanted to stay with you guys.’

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One particular four-year-old prayed, ‘And forgive us our trash baskets as we forgive those who put trash in our baskets.’

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A Sunday school teacher asked her children as they were on the way to church service, ‘And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?’ One bright little girl replied, ‘Because people are sleeping.’

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A mother was preparing pancakes for her sons, Kevin 5, and Ryan 3 The boys began to argue over who would get the first pancake. Their mother saw the opportunity for a moral lesson. ‘If Jesus were sitting here, He would say, ‘Let my brother have the first pancake, I can wait.’ Kevin turned to his younger brother and said, ‘ Ryan , you be Jesus !’

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A father was at the beach with his children when the four-year-old son ran up to him, grabbed his hand, and led him to the shore where a seagull lay dead in the sand… ‘Daddy, what happened to him?’ the son asked. ‘He died and went to Heaven,’ the Dad replied. The boy thought a moment and then said, ‘Did God throw him back down?’

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A wife invited some people to dinner. At the table, she turned to their six-year-old daughter and said, ‘Would you like to say the blessing?’ ‘I wouldn’t know what to say,’ the girl replied. ‘Just say what you hear Mommy say,’ the wife answered. The = daughter bowed her head and said, ‘Lord, why on earth did I invite all these people to dinner?’