Saturday, February 27, 2016



As we end this month filled with hearts and cards:

I pondered over Galatians 5:14 the other day.
For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

All the law?
 Hmm. So loving my neighbor as myself  is loving God.
And Loving my neighbor as myself stops me from coveting, from killing, from stealing, from bearing false witness, from committing adultery, and from dishonoring my mother and father.


Yes, All the Law is fulfilled in one word, even in this;

Friday, February 26, 2016

Cleaning House


There was bit of soap build up behind the bathroom sink faucet where the soap had been sitting for too long. For days I noticed it, and told myself why wipe it when the soap is going to go in the same spot and make the same filmy maybe later

image from web
Now there I was today, scrubbing away at  soap that could have been easily wiped up on day one, and just as easily, with one swipe, on day 2. Nope, I preferred the elbow grease way obviously. Not to mention the baseboards that hadn't been touched in- well never mind that. Just know that it was the same conclusion- I definitely burned more calories than necessary just to get the grime off.

More than a half hour later I stepped back to admire the sparkling white bathroom, along with it's clean smell. Then it happened- a light bulb moment. 
You know what self? If you would do daily maintenance as recommended, you wouldn't need to grimace and grunt when trying to restore the bathroom to beyond just-usable status.

I knew this for a fact, because part of my work outside the home involves a bit of cleaning. There are multiple shifts cleaning the same spaces throughout the day on a daily basis. Cleaning there becomes more about going through the paces, rather than actually cleaning anything. Everything is already pretty much clean.

However, even though it looks clean I still sweep with gusto, in case something invisible becomes visible. And you know what? Sometimes after I go over the clean looking floor, a tiny pile of dust is formed. Hmm- even when it's visibly clean, there's always something to pick up. I can barely see anything in the restrooms at work, but I disinfect and wipe like no tomorrow, and mop with fervor- (it keeps my arms and core toned).  And I notice that if I skip a day or two of , say, wiping out the refrigerator, I can tell. The build up is slow, but it's there none the less.

I realized it's the same with our hearts.

We may think all looks clean, but a good spiritual sweeping with the Word is always in good order. Just going a day without cleaning house leaves us open to buildup and excessive dust ( did you catch that? We're made from the...oh never mind). In other words if we neglect the sustaining and maintaining power of prayer and the Word, we have excessive flesh build-up ( you're getting a bit dusty over there...) Just a little carnality spoils the perfume of the Holy Spirit in us.
Take it from me- grunt and grimace or wash and be at rest? Your choice.
I suggest, you examine and clean house-
every day.

 I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.- 1 Corinthians 15:31

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.- 2 Corinthians 4:16


Monday, February 22, 2016

Holiness: To Honor him Part 4

Part four of our Holiness series is on lifestyle.  Catch up on part 1 , Part 2, and Part 3.

Purpose :

For I am the Lord your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

For I am the Lord that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.

Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Simply put, we are to be holy because our Father, our creator is holy. Our acts of holy separation declare his Lordship in our lives. IF God is my God, then I am holy because HE , himself,is.


If the music does not bring glory to God, or bring others to the glory of God, I won't listen.
If that movie or TV series promotes thoughts and actions that oppose God's laws, I won't watch it.
If the book or magazine incite thoughts or actions that conflicts with the Word, I won't read it.
If this outfit does not portray holiness and separation from the world, causing me to present as no different than my unbelieving peers, I won't wear it.
If this action or activity makes me look or behave like the world rather than a child of God, I won't engage in it.
If this group or a friend opposes or encourages me to pursue things outside of my set apart life-style, I won't associate with them.

The good news is, God lovingly provides us with clear guidelines for what marks a follower of Christ. A follower of Christ does not follow the rules of the world. In fact he does the unexpected- the exact opposite. For example:

But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you,28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloak forbid not to take thy coat also.30 Give to every man that asketh of thee; and of him that taketh away thy goods ask them not again.31 And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.- Luke 6:27-35

That seems really unnatural doesn't it? 
And it should. Because the things that are natural are these:
...fornicators, ...idolaters, ...adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.- 1 Corinthians 6:8-10
The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality,impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions- Galatians 5:19-20 (NIV)

20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.- Galatians 5:21-22

Anything that promotes these things, or causes us to promote these things (or things like it) should be avoided by every follower of Christ as much as they willfully can. Yep put that drink down...
This is true holiness. 
Here is one last look, as we end this series of lessons in holiness, at some great admonishment for a committed follower of Christ;

Instructions for Christian Living(NIV)

17 So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. 18 They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. 19 Having lost all sensitivity,they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, and they are full of greed.
20 That, however, is not the way of life you learned 21 when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.22 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; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self,created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to your neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin”[d]:Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry,27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands,that they may have something to share with those in need.
29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others upaccording to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God,with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another,forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
-Ephesians 4:17-32

 Catch up on part 1 , Part 2, and Part 3.