Tag Archives: bible

Eagerly Waiting

Just the other day, I was flipping through the pages of Hebrews when I found a cool verse in chapter 9.  Here’s what it says,

“So Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are

eagerly waiting

for him.”

-Hebrews 9:28-

When the realization hit me that I must always be eager in waiting, I began to feel like Octavius–the tiny figurine of a Roman soldier–from Night at the Museum 2.  In one scene, Octavius sets out to save his friend.  The only problem is that he must run across the front lawn of the White House.  For a tiny, plastic toy, this is a huge undertaking, one that he definitely underestimates.

Octavius begins by running with zeal.  The camera zooms in on him running through the grass, each blade taller than the red mohawk on his Roman helmet.  The viewers see Octavius running and panting and screaming war cries, but then, the camera zooms out, showing a view of the White House and the lawn out front.  Octavius cannot even be seen.   Eventually, Octavius collapses from exhaustion.

Often times, I find myself feeling just like Octavius.  My spiritual batteries become recharged, and I’m off to sprint to the finish line.  Once I feel exhaustion setting in, I look around only to realize that the distance yet to run seems too far and that there is no way that I can remain eager for even the rest of the day.  It’s in times like these when I wonder, “How in the world am I supposed to eagerly wait?”

God has already answered this question in a couple of verses.

  • Romans 15:5 calls God the “God of endurance and encouragement” and tells us to find our encouragement through Him and His word.
  • 2 Corinthians 12:9 says that God’s grace is sufficient for us, even in our weakness.  Verse 10 even says that His power rests upon us in times of weakness
  • Galatians 2:20 reminds us that as Christians, the life that we now live in the flesh, we live by faith in Christ!

Here’s how we are to continue to wait eagerly:  to receive encouragement and endurance from, to rely on Him as our strength in our weakness, and to always live by our faith in Him.

So next time that you find yourself feeling depleted of spiritual energy, go to God.  Remember the work that He has done in your life; feel His power being perfected in  your weakness!  All the while, you’ll discover that it’s much easier to wait eagerly, after all, it’s Christ that we are waiting for…

Remain faithful to being full with faith

Do you ever feel like  you are searching for something that you can’t see?

We read the Bible, and we go to church, and we do all of these “Christian things,” and yet sometimes we just want to ask God, “Where are you?  Just show Yourself to me so that I can believe and never question Your existence again!”

Whenever we get this idea in our head, that we will have our search for God satisfied once we finally see Him, we are just getting ourselves mixed up.  You see, we’ll never be satisfied until the day that we are finally with God.

Brian Sorgenfrei, Mississippi State’s RUF minister, once talked about this while referencing Rocky Balboa.  He talked about how Rocky had trained for this one fight believing that it would be what defined him, what satisfied his deepest desires.  So the Italian Stallion fought that fight, and he even won!  But guess what…. there are five more Rocky movies!  That deepest desire that Rocky thought would be satisfied by winning the first, big fight, well, it was never satisfied, after all.

We are just like Rocky, going from one thing to the next trying to find a fact on which to base our faith.  If you truly believe in God and the work of His Son, His Holy Spirit lives within you!  What more of a reason for faith do you need than this?

“Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” –Hebrews 11:1

“We are always of good courage.  We know that while we are at home in the body, we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:6-7

“These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar.  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 for them a city.” Hebrews 11:13, 16

God has prepared a city for us, a heavenly one.  And though we cannot actually see it, we see the evidence of it in our daily lives.  Sometimes our faith is tested in hard times, but we have to keep it!

We have to remain faithful to being full with faith.


Biblical love as expressed by John Piper

I’ve been reading John Piper’s book Don’t Waste Your Life, and there is a really good passage that I want to share! Here it is:
“We waste our lives when we do not pray and think and dream and plan and work toward magnifying God in all spheres of life. God created us for this: to live our lives in a way that makes him look more like the greatness and the beauty and the infinite worth that he really is. In the night sky of this world God appears to most people, if at all, like a pinprick of light in a heaven of darkness. But he created us and called us to make him look like what he really is. This is what it means to be created in the image of God. We are meant to image forth in the world what he is really like.

For many people, this is not obviously an act of love. They do not feel loved when they are told that God created them for HIS glory. They feel used. This is understandable given the way love has been almost completely distorted in our world. For most people, to be loved is to be made much of. Almost everything in our Western culture serves this distortion of love. We are taught in a thousand ways that loves means increasing someone’s self-esteem. Love is helping someone feel good about themselves. Love is giving them a mirror and helping him like what he sees.

This is not what the Bible means by the love of God. Love is doing what is best for someone. But making self the object of our highest affections is not best for us. It is, in fact, a lethal distraction. We were made to see and savor God–and savoring him, to be supremely satisfied, and thus spread in all the world the worth of his presence. Not to show people the all-satisfying God is not to love them. To make them feel good about themselves when they were made to feel good about seeing God is like taking someone to the Alps and locking them in a room full of mirrors.”

Isn’t this amazing? How different would we love others if we accepted this Biblical definition of love? How different would our world be? It’s had me thinking, and I have every loved every minute of this contemplation…

Living with the Word in our mouthes and in our hearts

Whenever we read the Bible and hear God’s commandments, how often do we view them as being separate from who we are?  The Bible can become just that book we read on Sundays, and the Ten Commandments seem to be nothing more than a collection of old words like thou, hast, and shalt.  So often, thoughts like these fill my head, and I begin to think that parts of Christianity, especially parts in the Old Testament, aren’t relevant to me.

Just yesterday, I was reading in Deuteronomy, and I found this amazing passage about those misconceptions.  In the Message, Deuteronomy 30:11-12, 14 says,

“This commandment that I’m commanding you today isn’t too much for you, it’s not out of your reach.  It’s not on a high mountain–you don’t have to get mountaineers to climb the peak and bring it down to your level and explain it before you can live it.  And it’s not across the ocean–you don’t have to send sailors out to get it, bring it back, and then explain it to you before you can live it.  No.  The word is right here and now–as near as the tongue in your mouth, as near as the heart in your chest.  Just do it!”

Even more so than when Deuteronomy was written, every bit of the Word is relevant us.  John 1:1 says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was God.”  With that being said, how could the Word not be relevant to us?  The Word is God!  And since the Word is God, that also means that God is in our mouths and in our hearts.  God is inside of us already!

Once we realize this, we see that God is committed to helping us follow His will.  He knows that it’s impossible for us to do it on our own; that’s why He sent Jesus Christ to fulfill the Law through dying on a cross for our sin.  He wants to help us follow His will so that we can experience the joy while worshiping with Him in our mouthes.  In our hearts filled with Him, we experience His amazing love and gifts of grace, more amazing than we could ever imagine.

Until the day that we live with God in His very presence, we have Him through the Word.  If that doesn’t make every bit of the Bible relevant to us, I don’t know what does…

Today, I saw a cow…

Disclaimer:  Today has been one of those days where just about anything could make me cry so bear with me on this one….

——————————————————

So basically, I have been feeling God so much here recently.  It’s ridiculous because what I have felt Him saying to me is, “Drop everything, Sarah, and love My children.”  Sounds crazy, right?  Well, it is so true that it has been at the back of my head for about three years and has finally been consuming all of my head since October of this past year.

With the stress of all this–of wanting to drop out of school, get a job to save money for missions, and go into the mission field–I found myself skipping class this morning…yet another time…to drive down country roads.

Songs of Hillsong, Brooke Fraser, and all other great Christian singers blared from my car stereo.  I was clearing my head, and then……. I saw a cow.

holstein cow

That’s right…a cow.

I hope you’re laughing right now because even I’m laughing… well, kinda.  You see this is what this cow made me realize.

This cow–just grazing in a field with all of his other black-and-white, spotted buddies–had absolutely NO concern over his own life.  All the cow knew was that green stuff under his hooves was for eating and wet stuff that was often conveniently located near yummy hay was for drinking.  His girlfriends, the heifers, also went to a barn once, maybe twice a day, and came back looking a few pounds thinner.  (Get it, milk cows?  It’s amazing what cutting out whole milk from your diet will do…. a  joke that only Nutrition majors will think is funny).

This cow, in other words, lived basically in ignorant bliss.  He knows that grass is there today; therefore, he’s going to eat the grass.  The cow doesn’t even think about tomorrow.

Why can’t we live like this?  Oh, because we have jobs and school and life and responsibility. Hmm, yes, but we also aware of something that this cow isn’t.  We have God.

Jesus tells us multiple times in the Gospel, “Look at the birds of the air and the lilies of the field.  Haven’t I provided for them?  If I’ve provided for them, taken care of them, then don’t you know that I’m going to take even better care of you?”

If you need to, go and find a cow to look at because, let me tell you, they live in complete peace that I’m jealous of.  God is asking us to live in this kind of peace, a peace that comes from not worrying about tomorrow and trusting Him completely….

Today, I learned the importance of not worrying and simply trusting God.

Today, I saw a cow.  Do you need to see a cow?

David Platt’s Sermon….Radical

The only way that I know how to express the brilliance of this sermon by one of Birmingham’s–and the world’s–most amazing Bible teachers is that it is amazing.  It is full of conviction.  It is words from a man inspired by the Holy Spirit.  It is radical.

So what is this sermon?  What is the premise of it?  What is so special about it that you should set aside an hour to listen?

In the light of eternity, one hour is relative to the blinking of an eye.  David Platt asks us a question that he admits that  he even asked himself… “Do I really believe the Word?  This Bible that I carry around, do I really believe it?”

If we do believe it, really believe it, that belief has radical implications on our lives.

I won’t say anything else because you just need to listen to it!  The suspense must be getting to you by now, so just go and check it out!

I pray that these words will convict you just as much as they have convicted me….

http://www.brookhills.org/media/series/radical

Quick post in the midst of a study break….

Alright!  Here is a super duper quick post while I am taking a break from stacks of books and mounds of paper that should be in binders.

Keep your focus on God.

It’s that simple and yet that is your key to success.  Remember that Heaven is our ultimate destination, our place of desiring!

Here are some verses to read as a study/work/stressful moment break:

Romans 2:6-8

Romans 8:24-25

Romans 8:28

1 Corinthians 7:17

1 Corinthians 15:58

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

2 Corinthians 5:13-15

Look at these verses this morning and take a moment to let them wash over you.  How would your life change if you really took these to heart?  What about your life would look different if you actually lived by them?

I pray your day is filled with Sonshine,

Now if this graphic doesn't make you giggle or smile... well that could just mean that you didn't wake up before the sun rose to study...

Sarah :)