The Passion of the Christ

I finally watched “The Passion of the Christ” two nights ago with a friend and with my daughter.  We wanted to watch it right before Easter weekend.  This was the first time I had seen it.  I have no idea why it took me so long to watch it.

Wow.  I was blown away.  I, of course,  know the story, I’ve read it many times, but watching that movie somehow made me feel the love of God even more than I did before.  Not only did Jesus endure the pain and suffering, but his Father in Heaven watched as His own son was tortured.  All because they love me and wanted me to be in Heaven with them for eternity.

It’s an incredible story.  It’s the best story there is.  It’s the Great News!

My daughter had a lot of questions after watching the movie, so we talked and we looked up verses in the Bible.   I originally had some fear in her watching the movie.  She did turn away quite a bit, but I came to the conclusion that if this story is burned into her memory for the rest of her life, Hallelujah!   I want her to remember all the pain and torment that Jesus went through just for us, because He loved us.  Because He loves her.

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Happy New Year!!

 

It’s time to say goodbye to 2010. It’s gone fast and what a year for us!  A lot has changed.  My husband and I completed our planning for 2011 the other night.  We will probably finalize everything this weekend and get started on our new plans.  I’m excited.

I love the New Year.  A fresh start.  A clean slate.  New beginnings.

Just like Jesus has given all of us by dying on the cross.  A new beginning. We can start fresh and leave our old lives behind to start a  new life.  All you have to do is except that Jesus died for you commit to living the new life!

There Is No Such Thing as “Self-Help”

I heard something the other day that has really stuck with me.  “Self control is not about self controlling self.”   Self cannot help self.  Only the Holy Spirit can help self.  We MUST rely on the Holy Spirit to help guide us to self-control.  We cannot do this alone.

I don’t know about you, but that is a relief to me.  I know the problem is that I’ve relied on mySELF to control self and I continue to fail over and over again.  I canNOT do this alone.  I must allow the Holy Spirit to live through me to gain self-control.

Just as the Bible says in Galations, that self-control is a fruit of the spirit.  It’s not anything I can gain myself, it’s only gained through my life being led by the Holy Spirit.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control”  Galatians 5:22-23

Do You Really Follow The Word of God?

I mean really follow what it says on a daily basis, do you do that?  I know I try, but am I really focusing on doing what the Bible says all day everyday?  That’s a tough one.  I think I do sometimes, but other times I’m not so sure.

I love these two verses:

“Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful”- Joshua 1:8

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock” – Matthew 7:24

It really couldn’t be any clearer.  God promises that we WILL succeed if we follow what He has told us in His word.  That’s it, just read the Bible (daily) and follow what He says to do.  It’s really pretty simple…right?  It should be, but why do I struggle with this?  I try to do things MY way, and they never work.  If I would just read, trust and obey every single day… imagine what God could do in and through me.

My prayer:

“God, please help me to stay out of your way each and everyday.  Help me to keep focused on Your Word and what it tells me to do.  Work within me and through me.  Keep me close to You and change my desires to match yours.  Amen.”

Baggage Claim

“Baggage Claim” is the name of our current message series at church.  Our pastor, Mac, started the series off this past Sunday. 

What a great message for anyone.  We all have baggage.  He listed out the types of baggage:

1.  Hurts and wounds.  Those things that others have done or said to you that have hurt you.
2.  Bitterness – not engaging in forgiveness.
3.  Circumstances – these are things that are nobody’s fault including yours.
4.  Family – what our family looks like and how the relationships work within them.
5.  Failures – moral  or mistakes

Mac then went into a discussion of Joseph in Genesis 37-50.  He referred to Joseph as the “Biblical Baggage Holder”.  Jacob had a lot of things going for him in his life, and a lot of them fell into many of the categories above.  However, he did not let his baggage label him or rule him.  He actually allowed God to use his baggage for good.  If you are not familiar with the story, you should read Genesis 37-50.

The moral of the story is that no matter what our baggage is, we need to allow God to use it for good.  Don’t turn away from it necessarily, but definitely turn it over to God.   He can then use it to help others and to heal you. 

I have some baggage in my life that I am not necessarily proud of, but I’ve worked through it with God by my side, and I’ve given it over to Him.  He has begun to use it for good and I’m amazed by that.  Something that can seem so heavy as you carry it around day-to-day can be lifted to God, in turn, lightening your load and helping others.   God can do amazing things with your baggage.

He also allowed you to go through those trials and mistakes for a reason.  So that he could use you in a certain way.  Your baggage is part of you and it has made you who you are, and remember God loves you just as you are……baggage and all!