Saturday, April 25, 2009

Trust Vs Worry

Thoughts on trust and worry .....

Corrie Ten Boom said that, "worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow; it empties today of its strength."

If we can trust God with our eternal destiny, why can’t we trust him with the everyday details of our lives?

Why do we worry? Is it because we forget that God is in control?

If we believe that all things work together for good because God is in control, we will not worry. Instead, we will lay all our problems at His feet and trust Him to help.

We must believe that God loves us, that He has our best interests at heart, and that He is totally in control of everything.

We serve a powerful, living, active, and able God. He is a God that is concerned about every detail of our lives.

Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

Jeremiah 17:7 – 10 ““But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit." The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? "I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve."”

Proverbs 3: 5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.”

Nahum 1:7 “The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him,”

Matthew 6:33 – 34 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Monday, April 20, 2009

Empty Me

American Idol had a young man on two seasons ago that I really enjoyed. He wasn’t afraid to tell his audience that he was a Christian and he wasn’t afraid to select Christian songs to sing. The Christian radio station I listen to in the morning played a song from his album this morning. I’ve heard the song before but this morning the words really spoke to me. It talks about asking God to take away my pride and selfish ambitions. And to take that part of my life and fill it with God’s presence.

Pride has no place in my life. It is a heart sin. It is deceiving. It is easy to put up a front to others and yet to know deep inside that I am not being honest with myself or others.

If I want to know how I am doing with keeping my pride in check – take a look at my motives. Why do I do what I do? The answer will reveal my pride. Remember that God sees my heart.

To others I may appear righteous but what is really going on inside? Am I seeking to honor God with my life? Or am I seeking the praise and acceptance of my peers? What matters most?

Do I consider standing for Jesus to be the highest honor? Do I have a servants heart or am I just looking to what can I get out of a situation?

These are tough questions but they deserve some thought. Only after I examine my heart and my motives will I begin to get a glimpse of how deeply pride has infected my heart.

You can play the song at the link below and the entire lyrics are below.

Empty Me
I've had just enough of the spotlight when it burns bright
To see how it gets in the blood.
And I've tasted my share of the sweet life and the wild ride
And found a little is not quite enough.
I know how I can stray
And how fast my heart could change.

Empty me of the selfishness inside
Every vain ambition and the poison of my pride
And any foolish thing my heart holds to
Lord empty me of me so I can be filled with you.

I've seen just enough of the quick buys of the best lies
To know how prodigals can be drawn away.
I know how I can stray
And how fast my heart could change.

Empty me of the selfishness inside
Every vain ambition and the poison of my pride
And any foolish thing my heart holds to
Lord empty me of me so I can be filled with you.

Cause everything is a lesser thing
Compared to you, compared to you.
Cause everything is a lesser thing
Compared to you, so I surrender all.

Empty me of the selfishness inside
Every vain ambition and the poison of my pride
Empty me of the selfishness inside
Every vain ambition and the poison of my pride
And any foolish thing my heart holds to
Lord empty me of me so I can be
Lord empty me of me so I can be filled with you.
Oh, filled with you.
Empty me.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Long to Worship

I was listening to the song “Worthy of My Praise” this morning.

The song starts like this:

I will give you all my worship
I will give you all my praise
You alone I long to worship
You alone are worthy of my praise

What does it mean to “long to worship”?

Do I long to worship?

Do I look at my devotion time as just something else I need to do? Something to check off my “to do” list.

What is my attitude when I come to worship?

Do I really think about the fact that I am spending time with the God of the universe?

Shouldn't my worship go on all day long -- 24/7?

What does worship mean. The word worship means to have the quality of being worthy. When I am worshipping, I am saying that God has worth, that He is worthy. Or in other words, I praise God. I need to talk and think about how good and powerful God is.

I am supposed to worship God – that’s one of my responsibilities as a Christian. I should declare to the world that God is worthy. 1 Peter 2:9 says that I am a chosen people and I am to declare the praises of God.

Worship should involve my entire relationship with God. It should be a part of my words, my attitudes, and my actions. It should be sincere – from my heart – not just lip service. He wants to be the most important thing in my life.

Is God the most important thing in my life? Does every part of my life reflect that? Do I “long to worship?”

You can play "Worthy of My Praise" here

1 Peter 2:9 "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."

Saturday, April 11, 2009

How do you want to be remembered?

Biblical Characters and how we remember them.

Abraham – full of faith, leader
Paul – faith, trust, bond servant of Christ
Peter – the rock
James and John – sons of thunder
Moses – leader
Noah - faith
Luke – historian
David – a man after God’s own heart
Jonathon – a faithful friend
Martha – worker, servant

By faith, Abraham trusted God for a child
By faith, Noah built the ark
By faith, Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt and across the Red Sea
By faith, Peter stepped out of the boat and walked on the water
By faith, Joseph took Mary as his wife

So what would I like to be remembered for?
How do I want this sentence finished – By faith, Carol ….

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Do you know what it is like following after an older sibling? I do. My older brother was quiet, athletic, smart, and completely annoying (to me). As I went through school, teachers knew I was his sister. Sometimes I felt like I didn’t have an identity of my own – just his sister. I worked hard and did well in athletics and academics. I wanted to do better than he did – after all, I had expectations to live up to.

What do you think it would have been like to be the (half) brother of Jesus. Mark 6:3 tells us that Jesus had siblings.

How would you like to be the brother of someone who was perfect? Try following him through school! Whenever you would get into an argument or disagreement – guess who was wrong. You were!

Then, he goes on and becomes a popular speaker and what does he say – he says he is God. How embarrassed would you be? Would you get it? Would you understand? After all, you’ve been living with him and seen his lifestyle. Could you begin to explain his behavior to your friends?

Think about how you would feel if your brother was crucified for his faith. Then, if that weren’t enough – rumors started that he had risen from the dead. Would you believe? Knowing him and watching him grow up – you wouldn’t have thought that he was God. After all, he was a living, breathing, growing human – just like you. Yet surely, you would have seen something different in his life.

Like Jesus’ brothers, most of us know far more than we are willing to act on. Think about the life of Jesus. Think about the truth of the cross and the resurrection. Let it change your life and the way you view living. After all, if you have accepted Christ, you’re part of the family of God.

Mark 6:3 “Isn't this the carpenter? Isn't this Mary's son and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas and Simon?”

Friday, April 3, 2009

The Prodigal Son's Brother

Today's thoughts are on the brother of the Prodigal Son. (Luke 15:11 - 32) Most people know the story about the prodigal son. He asked for his inheritance from his father and then he took it and wasted it on unholy living. When he was broke and had nowhere to turn, he went home to his father. His father welcomed him with open arms and threw him a party. He was so glad his son returned home.

The older brother, who had always remained faithful to his father, got mad. He was upset that his father rejoiced and threw a party when his brother, who wasted all his money, came home. He wanted to know, "Where's my party. I never got a party." He was feeling superior and self-righteous. He despised his brother and he was annoyed that his father forgave him so easily.

Have you ever felt like that? Like someone else got all the breaks – even when they didn’t deserve them. Like you have been working like crazy for someone and no one recognized your faithfulness or hard work. Outwardly you look good but inside you are bitter. You are filled with anger and resentment. You are expecting to be rewarded for your faithfulness, your efforts, your studies, your volunteer hours, your service, etc. Don’t you deserve a little recognition? The answer is - no. Ouch! The truth is we don’t deserve anything. Just because you are extra good, you don't get extra goodies. God is fair. Everyone who comes to Him gets richly paid - whether they came early or came late into His Kingdom. And I must never resent anyone for that!

Celebrate and be glad for how richly God chooses to bless you. And find delight in living for God's sake rather than your own sake.


Thursday, April 2, 2009

God doesn't change

I was listening to the radio on the way to school this morning and the song had the words:

My God, He was
My God, He is
My God, He's always gonna be

And so I had on my mind today that great truth. The idea of immutability. The fact that God does not change. He can't change. His character is constant. His nature is constant.

Malachi 3:6 - "For I am the Lord, I change not."

James 1:17 "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."

If God changed from day to day then He wouldn't be trustworthy. You wouldn't know what you could believe.

Here's the full lyrics:

Aaron Shust - My Savior My God
From the album Anything Worth Saying

I am not skilled to understand
What God has willed, what God has planned
I only know at His right hand
Stands one who is my Savior

I take Him at His word and deed
Christ died to save me; this I read
And in my heart I find a need
Of Him to be my savior

That He would leave His place on high
And come for sinful man to die
You count it strange, so once did I
Before I knew my Savior

Chorus (2x’s)
My Savior loves, My Savior lives
My Savior’s always there for me
My God: He was, my God; He is
My God is always gonna be

Yes, living, dying, let me bring
My strength, my solace from this spring;
That He who lives to be my King
Once died to be my Savior

That He would leave His place on high
And come for sinful man to die
You count it strange, so once did I
Before I knew my Savior

Chorus (2x’s)
Chorus: (2x’s)

My Savior loves, My Savior lives
My Savior loves, My Savior lives

You can play it for free on Jango.