Tuesday, April 17, 2012
Saturday, May 21, 2011
I posted this on my church's website and thought I'd share it here :)
In our lives, we often face storms, times that test our faith in God. There are four notable instances in the Bible when a storm was calmed miraculously by God. In each distance, the Lord calmed the storm for a different reason.
1. Jonah was thrown overboard
The first is found in the book of Jonah. Jonah was running from the will of God and was on a ship bound for Tarshish. Because of Jonah’s disobedience, the Lord sent a strong storm. The men on the boat began to panic, and Jonah admitted that he was causing the storm. They cast lots and the lot fell upon Jonah, so Jonah told them to throw him overboard. The Bible says when they tossed Jonah out of the ship, the sea ceased from her raging. Jonah represents everything that is anti-God. Like in the story of Jonah, many of us have people, mindsets, attitudes, or other things in our lives that are anti-God. God wants to miraculously calm the storm in our lives, but we each must first get rid of “Jonah”.
2. Jesus was awaken
In the fourth chapter of the book of Mark, we read a story in which Jesus is asleep in a boat that is being tossed and turned by a great storm. The disciples of Jesus are on the boat with Jesus and they begin to panic as the storm worsens. When the disciples wake Jesus up, He rebukes the wind and causes the storm to cease. Sometimes the storm in your life is there because the things of God are sleep. Is your prayer life asleep? Is your joy asleep? Is your worship asleep? God is an ever present help in the time of trouble, and He never sleeps or slumbers. However, we sometimes allow Jesus and the things of God to “sleep” on our ship.
3. Jesus was received into the ship
There’s another story about Jesus, the disciples, and a storm at sea found in John 6. The disciples were on a boat that was again tossed by a great wind. They saw a figure walking on the water and it frightened them. However, we Jesus identified Himself, they willingly received Him into the ship and the storm was calmed. Sometimes, all you have to do is open the door, received Jesus into your ship, and He will calm the storm of your life.
4. Peter stepped out of his comfort zone
The final notable calming of a storm in the Bible is found in Matthew 14. Again, the disciples are on a ship that is being battered by a storm. Jesus comes to them walking on the water and Peter asks the Lord if he could go to Him. Peter then walks on the water to Jesus but begins to sink when he notices the storm around him. However, Jesus reached out and grabbed Peter’s hand and they both walked back to the ship together. When they reached the ship, the wind and storm immediately calmed. Sometimes in order for your storm to be calmed, the Lord wants you to step out of your comfort zone and take a leap of faith toward Him. Don’t worry or fret if you do this, because even if you begin to sink, the Lord will be right there to catch you if you fall.
If you’ll toss Jonah overboard, wake the sleeping things in your life, allow Jesus to come in your ship, and sometimes step out of your comfort zone, your raging waters will cease because the Master of the wind will speak into your life and always make a way for you!
Luke 8:25 - The disciples were amazed. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “When he gives a command, even the wind and waves obey him!”
Monday, January 17, 2011
And he shall judge the world in righteousness, he shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness.
The LORD is known by the judgment which he executes.
He loves righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
For the LORD loves the just and will not forsake his faithful ones. Wrongdoers will be completely destroyed; the offspring of the wicked will perish.
Our loving and merciful God loves justice. The wages of sin is death, but His gift is eternal life through Jesus Christ.
Until we acknowledge God's judgment on the unrighteous, we can never fully appreciate his mercy and grace. God is love. God is justice. God is holy.
Real religion, the kind that passes muster before God the Father, is this: Reach out to the homeless and loveless in their plight, and guard against corruption from the godless world.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
I choose the handle of faith. Here's another nifty quote I came up with...yep, a Matt original! :)
"God is a songwriter. My life is the song. He has written me a beautiful melody and that's what I'll be listening to while He finishes the lyrics."
Every day we are faced with decisions. We decide what to wear, what to eat, where to go, who to text, what our next status update will be, to wear the red shirt or the blue one, to start that diet or wait until tomorrow, and so on.
Obviously, some are more important than others. Choosing what shirt to wear is nothing compared to choosing what to do with your life or who to marry or what your next tweet will be! (kidding on that last one).
What makes more sense? Relying on yourself to figure things out or trusting in God to write your lyrics. I choose the latter. Lately, I've learned that worrying about something only preoccupies you from enjoying the journey.
God has already given me a wonderful melody to listen to. Not a finished work, no details, no specifics, but a reminder that He's writing my song.
The Lord says, "I know what I'm doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for." (Jeremiah 29:11)
Only His song will be a song worth singing. You're in good Hands.
Friday, December 17, 2010
As much as we all love this story, but that's the story of what, not the story of why. It doesn't tell us the purpose of Christmas. Everything has a purpose, right? Why is the purpose of Christmas?
The harsh reality is that the baby was born to die. Instead of trying to explain, I'll let the Bible speak for itself. The following passage so beautifully summarizes the Christmas story.
"Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Philippians 2:6-11
There was a redemption because there was a resurrection.
There was a resurrection because there was a death.
There was death because there was a life.
There was a life because there was a birth.
Thursday, April 15, 2010
This morning I listened to his song called "Ten Thousand, One Million". I suggest you go find it right now and listen to it!
The lyrics are amazing. Look at these:
"Ten thousand sacred anthems
One million sincere praises
Can not proclaim how worthy Jesus is to me"
(Reminds me of the old song "You Don't Know Like I Know")
The thought is simple. No one can praise God like you can!
"No one can ever sing your praise for me
They don't know what you've done for me"
God created you unique. There's only one you. We say it a lot, but do we really understand?
He doesn't want mimicked praise or worship. He was the unique praise that can only come from the unique you.
These are my favorite lyrics in the song:
"Ten thousand saints crossed over, One million prostrate angels
They can't cry holy, holy, holy, Lord for me"
Jesus has endless amounts of praise from angels ... saints in Heaven ... creation itself.
But one million angels' praise cannot compare to one human soul choosing to worship Him.
God wants YOUR praise. God wants YOUR worship. God wants YOU.
You're special to Him. And nothing and no one can praise God for you!
Until next time,
Revelation 16:4 (MSG)
Then I heard the sound of massed choirs, the sound of a mighty cataract, the sound of strong thunder: Hallelujah! The Master reigns, our God, the Sovereign-Strong!
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
What up people! Oh my gosh, my first blog post! :)
With all the crazy stuff that goes on in my head, I might as well write it (or type it, in this case) all down! That way when I'm 80 and senile, I can look back at my life as a young man ... and probably think "Boy, I sure was dumb".
Hmm...what's the topic of my first post?
Lately, I've been feeling like I'm running around like a headless chicken. Yet, nothing's getting accomplished. I'm talking about literally. But inside I feel like I go through the daily routine of: Wake up, shower, dress, eat, school/work/church, eat, come home, sleep, repeat.
This gets pretty old after a while. Not my life, 'cause I LOVE my life. But the routine.
So I think...how do I go through this routine without it FEELING so repetitive.
The answer is: Enjoy every minute. Find something NEW today. Do something out of the ordinary. Do something random. Sing a song. Scream. Dance. Pray (woah, there's a shock).
Trust me...it will help.
I know it seems like the wheels are turning in mud, but I'll look back and say "Wow, how did I get here? I didn't know I was going anywhere".
So here I am. Enjoying my day. My life.
Until next time,
Psalm 118:24 - This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.
(P.S. - The picture you see is a random picture that I took of a really cool tree.)
(P.S.S. - Happy 21st Birthday, Sis!)