Philippians 2. 5-8
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death -- even death on a cross!
God's burning desire is for souls.
We win when we have been obedient and allowed God to use us -- and another is saved.
This is nothing short of a miracle in itself.
Think about it.
"The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, and he who wins souls is wise."
I heard something today that really made me think.
I know in my own life -- I chased after God for a VERY LONG time and I judged others and always -- compared their lives to mine. I was raised that way -- to look at what others were doing and then compare. From those standards I could tell myself if I was 'better' or 'needed improvement'. Now mind you -- I am not blaming my parents. I am not blaming grandparents, culture, or the fact I grew up on a dairy farm....I really am not.
I will not allow the enemy to remind me to BLAME my past. My past is not to blame. But...the way I was taught and what I saw on TV and around me - did shape my thoughts and how I behaved. IN a sense, we are all a product of our environments.
That is just me. So, as I said, I can go back to the 'old chell' very quickly - I have not forgotten her.
And when I do - I get a VERY SICK feeling -- of shame-- if I allow myself to go there. But, I have been forgiven.
I used to judge others. I looked at others and felt they were 'freaks'. I especially looked at people in church and judged them. I really felt the 'better' church was a big church. ( Did I say that?) In smaller churches -- where people did not look like me -- they just did not HAVE it put together like I did...or we did.
I was so wrong.
God used a very sad and yucky situation to change and rebuild me.
I am a former IDIOT. I am.
But now...when I hear a nonbeliever, or a very judgmental believer, or just a random person that has no clue making a comment on something -- I WANT to jump into their brain and say --- "WHOA...WAIT.... Do you realize that you are judging another by your own standards, have you read the bible lately? And when was the last time you walked a lost one to the feet of Jesus?"
"he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins".
I really DO NOT wish any crisis of faith on another person.
I would not want to walk my 'best friend' through the doors that I have walked through but I would if I needed to.
I heard my Pastor say something once and he was speaking about the fact if he found a brother in Christ in trouble - he would -- "if I got a phone call that you were in the most seedy place and you were shooting up or doing something unmentionable...I would come and get you...love you, pray for you...and walk with you so that you could be restored--cause I love you".
That is WHAT Jesus did. That is what Jesus would do. My Pastor taught me something that very day -- that no matter what ...Jesus already paid the price and love does cover a multitude of sins. Every person - every sinner deserves a 2nd chance. I am not to determine "whom"...that is for God to judge.
I was really saddened by what transpired with Ps. Bob Coy. I have listened to him faithfully. But, he is just a man. Humans will fail us. No one is immune to the enemy. It is a constant daily walk with our Lord and we use our armor to fight the enemy. I prayed that he had a Pastor friend or someone like my Pastor and I pray that he is being restored...with love...his entire family. I prayed that God had a friend like my Pastor that would speak those very same words over him.
But as I said earlier, I would not want a crisis of faith to be 'wished' upon another so they get it...or so they MUST seek God...cause MAYBE then they will really allow Jesus to be their Savior, not just the character they believe died for them.
Maybe then....they would be more than a spectator at church.
Maybe then they would see church as a place of healing instead of a place of rules.
Maybe then they would interact and want to be more than just a weekly visitor.
Maybe then...they would not think they are better than the rest of us 'freaks'....
Maybe then...they would understand that the enemy has lied to them -- and that their 'playing' church is NOT going to save them.....
I believe it is a privilege now to serve my Lord and share with others the JOY and FREEDOM that has finally fallen upon my head and heart. And, even if it took me 44 years to figure it out...ok. And even if it took a very painful journey...Ok. I am grateful for it - I am. Really.
And, even if I am considered a 'freak'..... I know that I know - I am doing WHAT HE has asked me to do and I am blessed beyond measure. And even if, I am persecuted because of it -- my rewards are in heaven!
I could share a personal blessing that God just gave me today -- about something....but - it is for me and HE to share....I know that I know..... that when HE heard me crying and shedding many tears...HE looked at me and gently whispered..."it will be ok"....and then the Holy Spirit whispered into my ears and said, "it will be Ok"....and then I know, I grabbed onto the notion that Jesus was RIGHT there - interceding and I could count on Jesus praying for me and the PIT I was in...and I knew, that one day -- I would be OK. I have been OK for quite some time now. Healing comes in chunks...and it comes slow, but it comes in HIS perfect time.
So, with that -- I just want to encourage another this eve --
If you are in a crisis of faith -- seek out some JESUS FREAKS....find a place -- a real church family that may not 'look' all put together at times ---but they are humble....and they LOVE the Lord...and they are REAL.
I am really tired of the ones that play church. But I asked YOU this evening to help me forgive them...as I was one of them for such a long time. And thank you, Holy Spirit for reminding me, that WHILE I was one of those judgmental churchy ones....I had NO clue that I did not get it. I was just doing my best...and that is probably what those others are doing -- their best. Who knows, maybe a 'churchy' one is reading this right now and is asking, 'is she speaking about me?'....Only YOU LORD can answer that -- I won't. But there is a way to check themselves.....is there fruit?
Lord, I pray they will ask....
When was the last time I shared WHAT Jesus did for me?
When was the last time I prayed with another?
So Lord, for the one that got me thinking this evening...I pray that one will FIND you -- will understand that church is not about rules...well, maybe that is the church they have seen -- that YOUR church is about a RELATIONSHIP with YOU ...and the rest will fall into place. God I pray - use me- I am humbled. Lord, I pray this is NOT about me...only about YOU.
Empty me of me.....fill me with MORE of YOU.