Monday, September 25, 2017
One of our scripture readings for the day was from Philippians 2:12-13.
"Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed-not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence-continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose."
The sermon scripture was from Exodus 16:2-15.
Her main questions for the day were:
"How much is enough? Do we trust God to give us enough?"
We feel we never have enough = lack of trust. When we hoard and gather, we lack trust in God's provision. We must also recognize his provisions. Do we trust god to provide all out daily needs? Including food, shelter, love relationships, service? We all hold onto things in place of trusting God. We need to focus on what we NEED, not what we WANT and we must SHARE from our abundance.
F.R.O.G. - Fully Rely On God
Personally, I think she made excellent points, but I struggled with the concept when it comes to a big picture in our world. As I tried to digest this, I though big pictures in our world today. I believe we have good people with great faith that are living in dire circumstances and struggling every day. Sharing for our abundance is the start, but people die of starvation daily. Maybe I am ignorant to my knowledge of the details here, but I would imagine some of these deaths are Christians with great faith. All their needs are met in salvation with death, but it just didn't quite sit right with my as I thought through this sermon.
I defiantly need to trust God more, rely on his for more, and I could share more too. But does this sermon carry over to all our Christian brothers and sisters? Maybe it doesn't and maybe that is okay. Maybe this was intended for just our congregation and is entirely accurate for such.
I just needed to think through it to wrap my mind around the concepts!
September is historically a hectic month because of the fair, but add in a work event, a live-in grandma on vacation a week, and house guests for grandma during the fair and this September stepped up the chaos!
I've kept my notes; I've wanted to capture the thoughts. I wish I had better prioritized this time in place of other things, but grace. :)
My notes this week actually started with the children's sermons when she talked about miracles. She has carried this talk of miracles through the next couple weeks too. But she defined a miracle as a thing we can't explain. Then she challenged the kids to look for the miracles. I accepted the challenge too. I had just recently read a book or article about wanting to see God's work and miracles and we will begin to see his work everywhere. I think I even wrote about this in my journal.
The sermon text was then from Exodus 14:19-31 and the sermon was titled "The Impossible Dream."
We started by talking again about miracles. It was the parting of the Red Sea. Regardless of how you explain the parting of the Red Sea, by Moses hand, by wind and low depths of water, etc. It is STILL miraculous. It still happened in God's wonderful timing to save just the right people and not their enemies! God brought that wind; God knew the timing.
God created science!
God's miracles are all about timing. Humans want to explain it all, but we must have FAITH. The more we learn about science, the more we know there had to be a God because it is AMAZING.
It took great faith for the Israelites not to turn back when they got their freedom. Here in the US, slaves commonly stayed and were then 'paid' for their work. They didn't leave immediately.
And to include some current events in the world, September is certainly a part of hurricane season. Pastor touched on Hurricanes as well. She mentioned that we have probably all heard things at one point of another that Hurricane's are part of God's judgment. No. Hurricane's aren't God's judgment. They are not only killing bad people; they are destructing good and bad.
Wednesday, September 06, 2017
When we moved to this house earlier this year, our new refrigerator had an icemaker and water dispenser in the door.
Ruthie loves to come "help" when I'm filling a glass. She puts her hands on the glass and stands there and holds it with me until we're done. Then she picks up any ice cubes that a following runs and puts them in the doggy dish for us.
Tuesday, September 05, 2017
She started with a tough question. "What determines life?" Breath? Brain function? Heartbeat? (She didn't answer the question, but reminded us that in the scripture, breath is linked to life. The breath of life. But that when someone passes, the cessation of the heartbeat is the time of death. In the time of Moses, blood was essential to live.
She posed other tough questions in the sermon this week too. "Do we give God our first and best? Or leftovers?" I know I probably rarely give my first and best unfortunately. I'd like to be better, but I can't quite get there.
Then we talked about the Passover, that very first Passover. God knew who his people were. He knows who his people are now. Why do you think he wanted the blood on the doorframe, and the eating while standing with bags packed, and so on? He wants our obedience. He knew the Israelites from the Egyptians, but he wanted their obedience. And he wants out obedience now.
What are we willing to leave or give for God? What do we have to sacrifice? Our lives. Our hearts. We had talked about this in Sunday School more extensively before the sermon and we've talked about it before too. Would we be willing to drop everything and go if called? My point has been that rarely would we wake up one morning and be called to leave that day. I think God more commonly gently guides us on a path that leads up there if we bravely follow him. We just need to take the next step. Yet, I imagine God has his own ways and sometimes it is immediate. We must give our lives. Our hearts. I must give my life, and my heart to God.
We must love one another, and live like we do love one another. Then we are sharing God's love.