Category Archives: Reputation

Duct Tape Doesn’t Stick.

” When you pass and come back to let me know that I am not on the list to get into heaven then I will have a problem with my life and do some things differently

Such heartbreaking words.  Heartbreaking because they were received by a sister in Christ, from her sister in the world.  Such bitter, angry, words…from the unknowing, from the natural, and the carnal.

We are all called to tell of the love of Christ.  We are to make concentrated, purposeful efforts to reach those around us. — Our friends, our neighbors, our daily contacts, but perhaps the hardest ears to hear continue to be our blood relatives.  Continue reading

Advertisements

6 Comments

Filed under Bible, Children, Church, Evangelism, Faith, Family, Family Relationships, God, Heaven, Life, Love, Prayer, Priorities, Reaching the Lost, Reputation, Wisdom, Witness

Who They Think They’d Like To Meet.

Name:  Julie
Age:  Wouldn’t you like to know?!
Status:  Married for 21 years
Education:  Still Learning
Who I’d Like to Meet I have already met:  God

In this techno-savvy age of computers, everyone has a “space”.  Both young and old seem to indulge in this form of communication, and at the height of the information board, the person’s “profile” that lists several things about them.

Name, age, location, education, favorite likes, dislikes, books, and other questions are boldly proclaimed across the world wide web.  There’s been much discussion about the safety concerns, or lack thereof in many cases, of sharing so much with the unknown.  Now, with private “friend” invitations, access can only be allowed to those we  “know”…so the communication waves continue, sharing photos, stories, lists, comments and so on.

In many cases, these web pages are much like blogging, minus the uncontrolled advertising.  However, I have to give a big sarcastic chuckle when I read a profile that says, “Who I’d Like to Meet:  God“, and yet their home page reeks of sinful indulgences.

Blaring rock music, lust-filled web design images, uncontrolled and innapropriate advertising banners, others listed as “friends” who boldly proclaim profanity, rebellion, and share stories of their latest sinful pleasures.

–And yet, they want to “meet God“?

I dare say they have not even begun to realize that the fulfillment of their wish might not be such a joyous occasion!

Why would God want to “hang” with pictures of drunken college kids who do little but lead others far from righteousness?  Why would God want to hear noise termed as “music” because that is what’s popular?  What would God say about the language that is being openly used and accepted as “cool”? Why is it that we’ve fooled ourselves into believing that it’s okay to overlook the obvious, all for the sake of fitting in? 

How would God react to these “adults”, who know better, and many of whom have professed a personal relationship with Him, when they are so weak in spirit and cannot resist the least temptation to participate with such evil?

They don’t want to meet God.  The one true God, that is. 

They meet their gods everyday, and enjoy the temporary pleasures of sin.  Their gods encourage them to stay away from what is right and good, and rejoice when another “little” step is taken further in the wrong direction.

Pretty soon, they are convinced that no harm can come from participating in unholy acts.  —Then…it becomes easier and easier and easier to ignore the wrong.  Eventually, the line is crossed, and there’s consequences too great to pay.

They don’t want to meet God. 

11 Comments

Filed under Attitude, Blogging, Children, Commitment, Ethics, Faith, Family, Friends, God, Life, Mercy, Morals, Obedience, Priorities, Reputation, Trials, Wisdom

In Her Eyes.

k-eye.jpg

God knows both the happiness and grief a teenager can bring to a mother’s heart.  When I became a parent, and through the last twenty years, I have been concerned about my children and what it will be like when they reach those delicate teenage years.   Will they be “boy crazy”?  Will they strive to succeed?  Will they be respectful of others?  Will they listen to God’s call on their life?  Will they remember the things that I have tried to teach them?  Will they ignore and learn from my own failures?  Or…possibly the greatest concern….will they be different from the way I was as a teenager?  Oh how I have hoped so!  Like many parents, I have wanted to spare them so much of what has been learned the “hard way”.

Fortunately, God has blessed us twice so far in this area.  My oldest is now 20 years old!  We are so proud of her and the decisions she has made.  She seeks God often, and serves Him faithfully.  She has served as a positive role model for other young girls.  She worked diligently to achieve in high school, and now in college.  She loves her family, and is not ashamed to admit it.  She doesn’t mind giving her Mom a hug.  She recognizes that we continue to learn in life, making mistakes along the way, but leaning on God to pull us through. 

With Kenya, I have not had to face what many parents face.   She has not been in the “party” crowd, done drugs or alcohol.  She has stayed committed to be pure for her future spouse.  Most importantly, though, she is wanting to be what God would have her be, before anything or anyone else.   

We are so proud and look forward to watching her be blessed due to all the good decisions she has made early in life. 

This summer, she has served as an associational missionary.  You can read all about it on her blog, the Uncomfort Zone.  

I have heard it said that, “Becoming a parent is making a decision to wear your heart on the outside of your body forever”.  — Because of Kenya, my heart has moved from a heavy load on my shoulders, to the inside of my arms, where I rocked her as a baby.

…Way to go, daughter!!  Keep up the Lord’s work!!

“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth”  3 John 4 

7 Comments

Filed under Attitude, Bible, Birthday, Blessings, Children, Church, Commitment, Faith, Family, Gifts, God, Grace, Joy, Life, Love, Missions, Obedience, Preparation, Priorities, Reputation, Success, Uncategorized, Wisdom, Witness

Still God.

For some unknown reason, I am in a state of mind that is just ….?….(I am even unable to put words to adequately describe it).

There is so much spinning around me that I am unable to grasp ahold of anything fully and devote myself to it. 

I feel like either satan is attacking, and/or God is speaking, and am unsure of how to answer. 

“Is it me, Lord?  Is it me that is entertaining selfish desires or doubts?  Am I wrong to feel so disconnected with what is going on in one direction, yet such a connection with another?” 

“Or…Is it You, Lord?  Are You telling me that I need to take notice?” 

Earthly speaking….nothing is making sense.  Half of me is wondering if I am just “PMS-ng”  (sorry guys!).  Still….I just can’t shake it and sit here wondering what the answer is.

I am glad that God is….Still God.  I know that He is in control, and will reveal the answer.  It’s just so miserable in the “inbetween”.

“There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death”

Proverbs 14:12

“Lord, keep me on Your path”

 

“Wisdom is found on the lips of him who has understanding”

Proverbs 10:13

“Lord, give me understanding”

 

“Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, But a good word makes it glad.”

Proverbs 12:25

“Lord, give me a good word”

 

“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, And he who wins souls is wise.” 

Proverbs 11:30

“Lord, make me wise”

 

9 Comments

Filed under Attitude, Bible, Church, Commitment, Faith, Father, God, Grace, Prayer, Priorities, Reputation, Stress, Tears, Trials, Wisdom

In the Garden of Life.

A friend and I were discussing that he read my latest blog about the gardening experience over the weekend.  He made a comment to me that he couldn’t help but think that the blog could have related alot with our experience in “life gardening”.  He noticed that many of the same things I wrote about also apply when we sow the seeds of faith.

Immediately, I was convicted that I didn’t take more time in my writing on that subject, so I resolved to re-read the blog again, and after doing so, I realized that he was right!  It is amazing how God takes our ordinary things and uses them to show us His plan!

So….here is the “revised” version of “God Is…In the Garden.” with kudos to my friend for pointing out the higher purpose in sprouting seeds!!

…………… 

“Today, we planted a garden!  We are worn out, and reminded of all the muscles we don’t normally use(how many of us use our “sowing” muscles?  When they are used in witnessing after being “dormant” for a while, it is a good/bad reminder…good, that we know we are doing God’s will, but bad, that we are reminded how few times we keep them in shape!), but the seeds are in the ground, and we are expecting a wonderful harvest! (We should have the faith that God WILL bring a harvest of souls into the kingdom!)

I really don’t know what I’m doing…just kind of praying that God will bless it! (God doesn’t expect us to always know what to say or do, but just to be obedient in spreading the Word.) Some of my thoughts during this process:

  1. “Need to till ground….that’s what husband’s are for!   I could never work that thing.  Besides, there is something “manly” about working with a tiller!  My husband really did look like he knew what HE was doing!  (Thank you, dear!)” (Tilling the ground can relate to the preparation and responsibility that we all must do before being an effective witness.  We must be willing to read the bible, live our lives as godly as possible, recognize and turn from situations that would compromise our witness, and “..be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you…”  1 Peter 3:15. 
  2. “Wow…the dirt is really black!  That MUST mean that it’s fertile, right?!” (The dirt IS fertile, and the “black” is the sin that is prevalent in our land today!  Let’s get out there and kick some dirt!)
  3. “It’s going to rain in a few days, so the seeds need to go in today!” (God is already bringing rain for the harvest!  More than ever, I know many of us are feeling His presence and the touch of His hand on lives all around us!)
  4. “Got to plan this thing right….tall things in the back, short plants in the front?” (Does location matter?  Where are we planting seeds?  Where is the potential for the greatest harvest? …I will tell you….it’s right where you are!  Unless God has specifically called you elsewhere, you can most often be effective in your witness to those around you; to the people that know you and see you live your life in a godly manner.  Our friends, neighbors, coworkers, and other members of your own community who already have a relationship with you may very well be the “ripest” of the harvest!) 
  5. “Seed packet says, “Plant 2 to 3 seeds every two feet.”  Ok….if I plant 3-4 seeds every foot and half, then SURELY SOMETHING will grow?!” (I would think that in this age of rebellion, that it wouldn’t hurt for us to be a little over zealous at times about our faith.  It seems that alot of Christians have arrived at an attitude that we might be too “pushy” or “offensive” to someone if we were to speak openly about the things of God.  It is such a shame that we are more often NOT saying the name of Jesus, than saying the name of our favorite actor/actress, celebrity, tv show, etc.  The name of Jesus should be part of our everyday language; a name that we speak without hesitation regardless of who’s around.)
  6. “A few hours later…..when the back is aching…try to remember why I started this in the first place!” (God never promised that it would be easy.  Sometimes, it’s going to hurt, and most often it hurts closest to home.  My pastor recently made a statement that I wrote in my bible. Regarding satan, he said, “If you’re not meeting him head on, you’re probably headed in the same direction.”  This is so true…we can often judge our godly productivity by the trials we face, knowing that satan will not be pleased.)
  7. “Oh boy, the neighbors are watching….hopefully, something looks right!” (Again, our friends and neighbors are watching.  We should be careful to exemplify Christ in our lives.  Like it or not, we are all leaders.  We may lead on purpose, with our mouth, and toward a greater goal, or we may lead simply with our actions.  We lead to or from God.  The bible says that the blind leading the blind will cause them both to fall into a ditch.  We can go to church on Sunday, carry our bible in the car, act like we know what the real message is, but if we also go around participating in the things of the world, then we are just leading others into a ditch.  We must have the willpower and integrity (which is defined as:  what we do when no one is looking) to honor God in all that we do, always being mindful of our influence on others.  “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad.”  Matthew 12:30)   
  8. When the work is done, “Hmmm….looks pretty good!” (…A big pat on the back!) (The pat will come from God, Himself!  I think I’m gonna’ reach up for a big hug, too!)

Can’t wait to eat fresh tomatoes, corn, onions, radishes, cucumbers, broccoli, okra, brussel sprouts (yes, I really like them), strawberries and squash!!  If it works, you’re all invited to supper!!” (The supper of the harvest!  The great celebration!  “Blessed are those who are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb!  Revelation 19:9)

……….

I pray that, together, we will sit at the table prepared for us in heaven, to eat of the sweet fruit of the harvest of souls.  I pray for you, boldness to share the Word, diligence to dig into the Word, and faithfulness to live out the Word!  May our “gardens” be the glory of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! 

6 Comments

Filed under Attitude, Bible, Blessings, Church, Commitment, Ethics, Family, Father, Friends, Garden, God, Heaven, Life, Obedience, Preparation, Priorities, Reputation, Witness

Our Identity.

On the way home from a soccer game, our five year old decided to announce that he had a word for each of us in the family.  He so intelligently proclaimed:       

Himself – “Motorcross”

His Little Brother – “Little People” (as in the Fisher Price toys)

Sister #2 – “Ketchup”  (she eats it on everything!)

Dad – “Fishing”

Mom – “Singing at church”

Sister #1 – Water  (she always drinks it)

We laughed reflecting on his comments!  It was so funny to hear him verbalize our “identities” based upon his young perceptions!  As I thought about what he said, I realized that there was a blog in this….

God Is…Our Identity.

  • John 10:14 – “I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.”

There are two ways of looking at this verse…”am known by My own” could indicate that we Christians know Jesus, as He knows us — like sheep know who their shepherd is.  However, from an identity standpoint, you could also look at this phrase to mean that Jesus is known by his sheep…meaning the reputation we hold reflects on the character and reputation of Jesus. 

If our reputation is of disobedience and rebellion, then we do not reflect a very good representation of Jesus.  When we proclaim ourselves to be a “Christian”, we are saying that we are “like Christ”, and if the world sees us behaving in disobedience, we are basically saying, “Christ acts like this.”   

We must be careful to exhibit our lives in such a way as to honor our Savior.  We, further, should recognize instances where we fail to do that, and take the time to point our failures out to other people.  We should be humbled to the point of making sure the world knows that we acknowledge the things we have done were wrong. 

Our reputation as Christians becomes Christ’s reputation to the world.

Even a five-year old like my son sees the “real” us.  He knows, by our behaviors, what we play with, what we drink, what we eat, what we spend our time doing, and what really makes us happy.  We should expect the rest of the world to also be watching.  Our identity is our reputation. 

What kind of identity do you have today?  I have to say I was very relieved to hear my son point out that I like to sing in church, rather than some of the other failures I often exhibit!   

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, …made Himself of no reputationtaking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men.  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.”  Philippians 2:5-8

4 Comments

Filed under Attitude, Bible, Children, Church, Commitment, Ethics, Family, God, Humor, Identity, Life, Morals, Obedience, Priorities, Reputation, Wisdom, Witness