A Life with Love Does Not Disgrace

To disgrace someone is the opposite of giving someone grace. Love is gracious and so to disgrace someone is to not show them love but to shame them. To shame someone is to make their sins and shortcomings known but grace covers up the sin of others and their shame. God is gracious and showed Adam and Eve grace from the very beginning after they had sinned. Because of their sin they were filled with shame and were afraid so they did themselves from God.

Then the Lord God called to the man, and said to him, “Where are you?” He said, “I heard the sound of You in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid myself.” Genesis 3:9.10

Sin brings shame and disgrace.

Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a disgrace to people. Proverbs 14:34

Our conscience bears witness against us when we sin and although we try to rationalize it or hide it we still know that what we have done is wrong. When the nonChristian appears before God for judgment then it will be their own conscience that will bear witness against them. The Lord knows not only everything that we have done but also the secrets of our heart. Nothing is hidden from Him.

For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves, in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus. Romans 2:14-16

Sin also brings fears and even though we may try to bury our fears and forget them they still will resurface at times. When the Lord takes away our sin then He also takes our fears. Adam and Eve were fearful and ashamed because of their sin.

The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife, and clothed them. Genesis 3:21

The Lord was gracious and full of compassion for Adam and Eve. He knew they were naked and afraid and so He spoke to them and provided for them by clothing them.

the Lord is full of compassion and is merciful. James 5:11b

When Jesus came into the world, He came to show us what God was like and to show us God’s love. Jesus Christ was full of grace and truth.

And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. John 1:14

Just as disgrace and shame are the same so grace and love are the same. Grace is the expression of love and love covers sin. God loved us by sending Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, to take away our sin and to cover our sin through His death on the cross for us, which was the expression of God’s love and grace.

Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. I Peter 4:8

When we receive Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior then all of our sins are taken away, even the secret sins of our hearts. We are forgiven and our sins are covered, never to be made known and our conscience is cleansed before God. This is how God has loved us and this is how He wants us to love one another.

Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. I John 4:11

One aspect of the definition of righteousness is doing life right and living according to God’s ways. When Joseph thought that Mary had been unfaithful to him, he was hurt and could not take her as his wife, but Joseph, being a “righteous” man desired to send her away secretly, rather than shame her publicly.

Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. Matthew 1:18,19

Just as sin is a disgrace to any people so also righteousness exalts a person. When we live and love according to God’s ways then others will see Jesus Christ in us. When a marriage is filled with God’s love then there will be much grace shown to the other and sins will be covered up rather than made known to others. To love is to be like God and when we are like God then we will love. God is love and love is what defines the Christian and the Christ centered marriage and family.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:34,35

A Life with Love Needs Grace

We need God’s grace to love and to be faithful to what He has called us to do. He has called us to be His children and love is to characterize our lives. We are to represent Him to others in our lives and our marriages are to show the world His plan of love for mankind. His grace and peace is multiplied to us through the knowledge of God.

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; II Peter 1:2

We are powerless to love with a Godlike love apart from the Lord but can be recipients of His grace and power. We need His grace and His power to live the life He intended for us and to have the love in our marriages that He meant for us to have.

seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. II Peter 1:3

His divine power has granted us everything that we need pertaining to all of life and to live a godly life and to have a godly marriage in an ungodly world.

For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. II Peter 1:4

It is His precious and magnificent promises that allow us to become like Him and to escape the corruption that is in the world. It is His promises that give us hope that our life and marriage will not be destroyed or corrupted but will grow stronger and stronger as we grow in the love and knowledge of Jesus Christ. We no longer have to live according to our lusts but we can live according to His will which will allow us to experience His love and will bring us great joy and peace. The word “lusts” in the original language means “desires”. It is our “lusts” that destroys love in our relationships and brings death to our marriage. It is His will that nourishes love in our marriage.

But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. James 1:14,15

The Lord tells us not to let our “lusts” deceive us. He will give us His desires for our life, which are good and perfect gifts. If we had all of the knowledge to choose what is best for us then they are the good and perfect gifts that He would choose for our lives. He is the only One who is all knowing and knows what we need and what is best for us.

Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. James 1:17,18

The lusts of the world bring corruption and destruction to our life and marriage. Love in marriage is a good and perfect gift that He wants to give to us. He will give you the grace and power to live according to His ways and to not give in to temptation. No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.

For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
The Lord gives grace and glory;
No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly. Psalm 84:11

The Lord is the One who gives grace and glory. If you humble yourself before Him then He will give you His grace so that you might have the power to walk uprightly, obey Him and live according to his promises. You will escape the corruption that is in the world that comes to those who seek their own will and live according to their own desires.

But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6

A Life that Listens and Hears

There is a difference between listening and hearing. A child can listen to what you are saying but they don’t hear what you are saying. If you are a mother or a teacher then you fully understand this concept. The Lord said over and over again, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear”.

Matthew 11:15 He who has ears to hear, let him hear.

The Lord makes it very clear what is going to happen. He also is telling us to not only listen but to hear what He is saying. How blessed will be those who heard Him.

Matthew 13:41-43 The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all stumbling blocks, and those who commit lawlessness,and will throw them into the furnace of fire; in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.

The Lord tells us that not only should we be prepared for Him when He comes again but we need to be careful to not compromise His standards during the time of our stay on earth. Again, He says, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear”.

Luke 14:34,35 Therefore, salt is good; but if even salt has become tasteless, with what will it be seasoned? It is useless either for the soil or for the manure pile; it is thrown out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”

God’s Word is given to us to change our lives and not just for us to talk about it. How easy it is to talk about God’s Word but not let it infiltrate every area of our lives. The Lord wants us to obey His Word and not just gain knowledge of His Word with it having no effect on our lives.

Jeremiah 23:29 “Is not My word like fire?” declares the Lord, “and like a hammer which shatters a rock?

God’s Word is like a hammer and how much we need it to break open our hearts so that we can hear what He has to say, rather than just listen to the words.

John 5:25 Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.

Before we came to know Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we were dead spiritually and it is only when we hear Him and respond to His voice that we come to life spiritually. God’s Word has the power to give life and those who receive His Words by faith receive that life, which is in Jesus Christ.

Romans 1:16,17 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “But the righteous man shall live by faith.”

“He who has ears to hear, let him hear”, Jesus says to all and how blessed are all who hear His Word and comes to the Lord in a saving faith. They receive eternal life, they do not come into judgment and they pass out of death into life.

John 5:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

 

 

 

A Life Free of Snags and Snares

There are two things that will hold us back from fulfilling the purposes of our life and they are snags and snares. A snag is something that is beyond our control but will be an obstacle to achieving our purpose in life. A snare is a trap that ensnares us and is something that will hold us back.

Proverbs 13:14 The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, To turn aside from the snares of death.

Wisdom will help you recognize the snares so that you can turn aside from them rather than fall into the snares of death.

Proverbs 14:27 The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, That one may avoid the snares of death.

When a person fears the Lord then they will avoid the snares of death. They will stay away from the paths where the snares are hidden traps to ensnare the foolish who walk along the paths that lead to death.

Proverbs 22:5 Thorns and snares are in the way of the perverse; He who guards himself will be far from them.

A perverse person is one who is perverted in their thinking and one expression of a perverted person is that they will use curse words. Guard your mouth and your will protect yourself. One of the first ways that children learn to rebel is in their language. When you have children never allow them to use curse words. Children are attracted to other children by the language they use, whether it is pure or perverted.

Proverbs 17:20 He who has a crooked mind finds no good, And he who is perverted in his language falls into evil.

The only way that your children will never use perverted language is if they never hear it. Do you ever use curse words or watch movies with curse words? You may think that this is not important but young men are attracted to a lady whose speech is gracious rather than perverted. A man and a woman who will make a good marriage will not use curse words.

Proverbs 22:11 He who loves purity of heart
And whose speech is gracious, the king is his friend.

Fearing the Lord and not using curse words go together. The person who fears the Lord will be careful in their speech and even more than that, they will be careful what they listen to, knowing that the mouth speaks from that which fills the heart.

Proverbs 8:13 The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way And the perverted mouth, I hate.

Snags in life are situations that we have no control over but they hold us back. What do you do about snags? Well, to those who love the Lord, the snag is something that will allow them to see His power and His love for them. He can and will remove it if that is His will. He is greater than all and will not allow anything to happen that will prevent His will and plan from being accomplished in your life. He causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him.

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

The Lord wants us to walk by faith and trust Him. He will accomplish His purposes in our life and when He removes the snags it will be His confirmation that this is something that He wants to accomplish.

Job 42:2 I know that You can do all things, And that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.

Give thanks to the Lord for the snag for he wants you to trust Him. There is nothing impossible with Him.

Matthew 19:26 And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Man’s impossiblities are God’s opportunities. Trust Him and see His salvation. He delights in showing His glory.

John 11:40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?”

Jesus is saying the same thing to us today, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” Is there something that is holding you back that is our of your control? Thank the Lord for it and be still and know that He is God. He will be exalted in your life, for He is God. He will accomplish the purposes for which He created you.

Psalm 46:10 “Cease striving and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

 

 

 

 

 

A Life with a Purpose

When a young person loses hope they quit dreaming and when they quit dreaming then they quit living and are only existing. The Lord has so much in store for each person and He gives a life purpose and direction. How do we know His purpose for our life and how do we accomplish our potential. Living life to the fullest is becoming all that you can be and reaching your full potential in life. How do we know our purpose in life and fulfill it? The word purpose means: the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists. Not all accept the purpose for which they were created.

Luke 7:30a But the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected God’s purpose for themselves,

Jesus knew His purpose in the details for which He was sent.

Luke 4:43 But He said to them, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, for I was sent for this purpose.”

Jesus knew His overall purpose for which He came.

John 12:27 Now My soul has become troubled; and what shall I say, ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour.

It is only in Christ that you can discover your purpose. Life is far more than eating and sleeping and work. Apart from the Lord you will just “go through life” without real meaning. If you want to know God’s purpose for your life, in the details and particular purpose just for you, then you must follow God’s purpose for you in the His general purposes for you and everyone else. Humans are the only aspect of creation who have not followed God’s purpose for which they were created. What are the basic purposes?

I Peter 2:20b,21 But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God. For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps,

The first step in discovering God’s purpose for your life is to do what is right in what He has already revealed to you to be His will. Is there anything that has been left undone that He has told you to do? Why should the Lord make known anything else to you if you are not doing what He has already shown you?

I Timothy 4:7 On the other hand, discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness;

God’s purpose for you is to be godly and to discipline yourself for this purpose. How are you doing in your own personal discipline? If you are lazy and indulging yourself for your own comfort then why should He make known to you His purpose for you? It is easier to direct a moving vehicle than one which is sitting by the road. Are you going about and leading a disciplined life by doing what you already know what you should be doing or are you waiting until He shows you what He wants you to do? Get moving doing what you already know to do.

I Thessalonians 4:7 For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification.

The Lord has called us to be pure. Are you reading and listening to things that you should not be paying attention to? What is your music like? Music is often a general expression of the heart. Does it feed your fleshly desires? Why should the Lord show you His will if you are allowing garbage to go into your mind?

Colossians 1:28,29 We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ. For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His power, which mightily works within me.

Are you involved with a church or the body of Christ is some way that is helping you fulfill the Great Commission of making disciples? We all can’t do everything but we all can do something to proclaim Christ to the world. When you are doing His will then His power will mightily work in you. You will find that as your are united with other Christians for the purpose of fulfilling God’s will in the world that you will bring joy to others and you will find your purpose in life.

Philippians 2:2 make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.

The Lord will make known to those who follow Him, the mystery of His will for their lives, which is in accordance with the kind intention which He purposed in Christ. The Lord is kind and His will for you is good.

Ephesians 1:8b,9 In all wisdom and insight He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him

So, having done all of these things, how do you know God’s will for your life? The Lord says that the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn that shines brighter and brighter until the full day. As you go in the direction of God’s will for you then it will become clearer and clearer.

Proverbs 4:18 But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn,
That shines brighter and brighter until the full day.

His peace will rule in your heart as you follow His direction. If you find yourself being confused then you must stop and not go any further in that direction but you need to wait again on Him. The Lord is not a God of confusion.

I Corinthians 14:33 for God is not a God of confusion but of peace

Don’t try to make something fit. If it is God’s will then it will be a good fit for you. He made you for a purpose and as you fulfill the purpose for which you are created then you will be secure and have joy and meaning in life. You will not need to compete with others or feel that you need to impress others but you will be secure in where He has you.

Colossians 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

Don’t forget to give Him thanks for the purpose for which you are created. Giving thanks to the Lord keeps your focus on Him rather than on the purpose. The devil will do anything to get our focus off of the Lord and onto something else, even if it is something good like His purpose for our lives.

 

 

 

 

 

A Life that Is Not Ashamed

We often are very concerned and conscious of what others think of us and we want to be accepted and respected by others. As we grow older we become aware of what we need to do to be “socially acceptable”. Only a very secure person can go through life willing and able to stand alone.  It is a natural desire to want the respect of others, however, it can become a snare for us and hypocritical if we change our behavior or put on a certain front in order to receive the acceptance and respect of people.

Matthew 6:2 So when you give to the poor, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be honored by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

The religious leaders in Jesus’ day loved the praise and honor of men but the Lord called them hypocrites because it was not who they really were when they gave for appearance sake. They only gave so that others might see and honor them.

Matthew 6:5 When you pray, you are not to be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on the street corners so that they may be seen by men. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

Again, they prayed so that others might respect them for their “spiritual” prayers. Again, the Lord called them hypocrites. To receive the praise of others was their reward in full.

Matthew 6:16 Whenever you fast, do not put on a gloomy face as the hypocrites do, for they neglect their appearance so that they will be noticed by men when they are fasting. Truly I say to you, they have their reward in full.

Again, their life was all about putting on an appearance in order to be accepted and praised by others.

Mark 8:38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be  ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

Jesus Christ is the ultimate example of someone who was secure in who He is and who was willing to be rejected by others in order to accomplish something greater. Jesus Christ knew that He was accepted by His Father and He lived to please the One who had sent Him. Jesus Christ promises us that if we will not be ashamed of Him and His words then He will not be ashamed of us when He returns. An indication of a true Christian is that they will be ashamed of the things they did before they were a Christian and they will not be ashamed of Jesus Christ and following after Him after they have become a Christian.

Romans 6:21 Therefore what benefit were you then deriving from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the outcome of those things is death.

Sometimes a conflict is created between a Christian and unbelievers who are in a close relationship with the new Christian. They may be a family member or a friend who has not yet come to Christ. New Christians want to please the One who died for them and the nonChristian does not understand that kind of commitment because they have yet to experience His amazing love.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

We are secure in the Lord once we come to know Him and we understand that His words are power and that He will never leave us or forsake us. We have a sure foundation in Him which can not be shaken and He is able to guard what we have entrusted to Him.

II Timothy 1:12 For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day.

What great joy it will be for those Christians who did not shrink back and who were not ashamed to suffer for being a Christian. Sometimes it might seem lonely but He promised us that He would never forsake us. Even though we can not see Him, we believe in Him and know that He is faithful and will fulfill all of His promises that He has given to us. He is not ashamed to call us brethren.

Hebrews 2:11 For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified are all from one Father; for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren,

Neither is God ashamed to be called our God, for He has prepared a place for us.

Hebrews 11:6 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.

When the Lord comes again it will only be those who were not ashamed of Jesus Christ during the time of their stay on earth who will not shrink back in shame. Those who refused to call upon Him will wish they had and will shrink away in shame for their many sins and for not calling upon Jesus Christ, the Lord of lords and King of kings.

I Peter 4:16,17 but if anyone suffers as a Christian, he is not to be ashamed, but is to glorify God in this name.For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if itbegins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?

It is not too late to call upon Him. It is not too late to humble yourself under the mighty hand of God and call upon His name. He desires that all come to know Him.

Isaiah 55:6,7 Seek the Lord while He may be found;
Call upon Him while He is near.
Let the wicked forsake his way
And the unrighteous man his thoughts;
And let him return to the Lord,
And He will have compassion on him,
And to our God,
For He will abundantly pardon.

 

A Life that Loves the Light

We will either love the light or we will love the darkness. Our hearts are deceitful and if we don’t come to the light then we will love the darkness so that our heart will not be exposed.

John 3:19-21 This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.

The Lord has given us this opportunity to come to Him so that the light might expose our evil hearts so that He might clean them so that we might have a clear conscience.

Hebrews 10:22a let us draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience

Draw near to the Lord and He will draw near to you and clean your conscience so that you might be able to live before Him with a clear conscience. All of us sin and need to be cleansed. It is the person who does not come to Him for cleansing but continues on in their evil ways that will suffer shipwreck in regard to their faith.

I Timothy 1:19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.

If you will come to Him and have your conscience cleaned then you need not fear the judgment day when your own actions and conscience will testify against you when the light is shown on you because you refused to come to the light earlier and be cleansed.

Luke 8:17 For nothing is hidden that will not become evident, nor anything secret that will not be known and come to light.

If you have come to the Light then continue to follow the Light that you might stay in the light.

John 8:12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

He who walks in the light will not stumble but will have the light of life.

John 12:35,36 So Jesus said to them, “For a little while longer the Light is among you. Walk while you have the Light, so that darkness will not overtake you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes. While you have the Light, believe in the Light, so that you may become sons of Light.”

When we walk in the light then we will have fellowship with one another and His blood will cleanse us from our sin.

I John 1:5-7 This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth; but if we walk in the Light as He Himself is in the Light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin.

Those who love the light will come to the light that their deeds will be made known as having been wrought in God.

 

A Life at Peace

There is nothing in the world that can compare to a life of peace. Peace, how sweet it is for the person who is at peace with the Lord, with themselves and with others. The lack of peace robs you of love, joy and contentment. When peace is missing it is replaced with anxiety, sadness, frustration, emptiness and a lack of satisfaction in life. First of all, there is no peace for the person who is not right with the Lord.

Isaiah 48:22 “There is no peace for the wicked,” says the Lord.

All of our hearts are deceitful and wicked and we will not know peace until we have peace with God. Jesus came to bring us peace and the one who comes to Him receives His peace. Jesus is the Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

When He gives us His peace then He takes our fears and troubles. He came to take the very things that are causing us a lack of peace.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.

Let not your heart be troubled. Come to Him and give Him whatever it is that is causing you anxiety. He will take your burdens and cares for He cares for you. He will take your worries and troubles and give you His peace. Are you afraid? Come to Him.

Luke 8:49-56 While He was still speaking, someone came from the house of the synagogue official, saying, “Your daughter has died; do not trouble the Teacher anymore.” But when Jesus heard this, He answered him, “Do not be afraid any longer; only believe, and she will be made well.” When He came to the house, He did not allow anyone to enter with Him, except Peter and John and James, and the girl’s father and mother. Now they were all weeping and lamenting for her; but He said, “Stop weeping, for she has not died, but is asleep.”And they began laughing at Him, knowing that she had died. He, however, took her by the hand and called, saying, “Child, arise!” And her spirit returned, and she got up immediately; and He gave orders for something to be given her to eat. Her parents were amazed; but He instructed them to tell no one what had happened.

The synagogue official came to Jesus about his sick daughter and before they could make it his house, he was informed that she had died. Jesus said to him, “Do not be afraid, only believe.” Jesus makes it sound so simple with the word “only”. Only believe and you do not need to be afraid any longer. If only we could believe. Believing is coming to Jesus. The Lord was saying to Jairus, don’t give up now, keep believing, and don’t be afraid. We become afraid when we get our eyes off of Jesus and onto the problem itself. Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus and you will not be afraid. If you continue believing you will have His peace and you will end up being amazed at what the Lord will do. It is those who don’t believe who are laughing. To those who have faith the Lord shows His faithfulness. Jesus offers His peace to all who come to Him.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.

There is no problem too big for Jesus. It is in Him that we find peace. In the world we will have troubles. Take courage, for Jesus Christ has overcome the world. Where are you in your peace with the Lord? Are you an overcomer? It is your faith in Him that will allow you to become an overcomer.

I John 5:4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

Once you are at peace with God then He will show you what you must do to be at peace with yourself and with others. Often it begins with forgiving ourselves and accepting who we are and where we are at in life. We can forgive ourselves and accept where we are because Christ has forgiven us and accepted us. We can forgive others and accept where they are because Christ has forgiven them and loves them also.

Proverbs 16:7 When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord,
He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

Life is sweet when we are at peace with God and with ourselves and others. Where are you in your journey? Believing in Him is coming to Him. He is waiting for us to come to Him. He who gave up His own Son will He not with Him freely give us all things? There is no problem too big or too small for Him. Come to Him.

Romans 8:32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?

 

 

A Life that Respects

All of the ten commandments can be summed up in one word and that is respect. We are to respect God and we are to respect one another.

Exodus 20:3 You shall have no other gods before Me.

The Lord God is our Creator and he deserves our respect. We should have no other gods before Him.

Exodus 20:4-6 You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

The Lord has made us for Himself and is a jealous God and does not want us to worship that which is false. There is no comparison to Him. He is the only true God. The Lord does not want us to make any likeness of Him for then we would consider that likeness to be holy and would be honoring it as if it were God. This quickly can lead us astray.

Exodus 20:7 You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.

Do you say “OMG” then you are taking God’s name in vain. Or saying something like “Oh my _ _ _”. These sayings are not wise nor are they pleasing to the Lord. Who knows how many people are experiencing God’s punishment for taking His name in vain. Don’t take any chances. The Lord takes this very serious. No other commandment does He say that He will punish the evildoers but this one particular commandment. His name is holy and He wants us to respect His name.

Exodus 20:8-10 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath of the Lord your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you.

The Lord gave you a day of rest each week. If you are stressed out and exhausted then ask yourself, “Am I honoring the Lord on His holy day?”. The early church set aside Sunday as the sabbath to worship Christ and to rest. This means that it is not “Family Day” or “Sunday Funday”. We are to show respect to the Lord on His day…this means no work nor do you pay others to work for you such as waitresses, grocery store workers, etc. The Lord said no one is to serve you on His day.

Exodus 20:12 Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you.

This is the first commandment with a promise. Show respect to your parents. Even if you don’t want to respect a person you should always respect their position. Your parents are sinners and you may not always feel that they are worthy of your respect. Respect them anyway out of respect for the Lord. If you have parents that are worthy of respect then you need to thank the Lord every day for them.

Exodus 20:13 You shall not murder.

The Lord has called us to respect human life. Abortion is murdering babies. The Lord also said that if we have hatred in our heart then that is the same as murdering someone in our heart. We are all guilty of all of the commandments but there is forgiveness with the Lord if we confess our sin to Him then He will forgive us.

Exodus 20:14 You shall not commit adultery.

Have you ever lusted in your heart for someone? The word “lust” means in the original language “desire”. Have you desired in an inappropriate manner anyone other than your husband? If so, then you have committed adultery in your heart. Keeping this commandment is respecting other people and their relationships.

Exodus 20:15 You shall not steal.

Have you ever cheated? Then you have stolen what is not yours. Do you always pay what you owe even when the person would not be aware of it? Do you ever use something and then return it to a store as if it had not been used? Do you pilfer from your employer? What you do in secret is who you are. If you steal then you are a thief and are not respecting what belongs to others.

Exodus 20:16 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

Do you ever lie to someone because you are afraid to tell the truth or do you tell a lie to make yourself look good? If so, then you are not respecting your neighbor.

Exodus 20:17 You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

The Lord does not even want you to desire what is not yours. A great test for this is do you rejoice when others have something that you have always wanted? Respect for others is not even wanting what they have but being content with what the Lord has given to you.

Matthew 5:19a Whoever then annuls one of the least of these commandments, and teaches others to do the same, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven;

Do you believe that the ten commandments do not apply to today? Then you need to take seriously what our Lord said and that is, that whoever annuls one of the least of these commandments and so teaches others shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven.

Matthew 5:19b but whoever keeps and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

On the other hand, whoever keeps and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of God.

 

 

 

 

A Life that Does Not Give Away Intimacy

There is a saying, “If the milk is free why buy the cow?”. There are certain gifts that have been given to us and that a young lady should not give away except to the right person at the right time. She should not give away her body to men but it is to be saved for her husband alone and only should be given to him after he has taken her in marriage. Marriage is a man’s commitment to a young lady to love her, to cherish her, to protect her, to provide for her and ultimately to lay down his life for her. Many a man will make promises to get what they want and then once they have gotten their desires then they never fulfill their promises. Engagement is not marriage and the same rules for dating apply during the engagement period.

I Corinthians 6:18-20 Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.

Marriage is not a 50/50 proposition but it is a 100/100 relationship. Each one gives all of oneself to the other so that they might become one. However, what is right before marriage is wrong after marriage. It is right to abstain from sexual relations before marriage and wrong to withhold from each other after marriage. There is a saying that girls that do “it” before marriage don’t want to do “it” after marriage so it is foolish for both to compromise God’s standard of morality. God is not mocked. He has His standards for our good and we are foolish not to abide by what He has said.

Galatians 6:7,8 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

Moral excellence is the root of true love in a marriage and it is expressed through waiting until after the wedding to have a physical relationship. If two people are morally excellent in their standards then they will trust each other after they are married. If a man and woman compromise before marriage then the trust will not be there as it could have been had they waited.

II Peter 1:5-7 Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge, and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness, and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love.

If you have compromised God’s moral standard then it is not too late to repent but there needs to be repentance and though that may be hard it is necessary. Repentance means that you are turning your back on your sin and turning to God. However, you must keep turning to the Lord so that you do not fall back into your old ways. You also must flee from temptation. Temptations are often much stronger if you have tasted of the pleasures of that particular sin. You do not miss what you have never known.

II Timothy 2:22 Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

You can, by God’s grace, keep His standards of righteousness. God is faithful and will provide a way of escape to the one who calls on Him and puts their trust in Jesus Christ.

I Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.