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Archive for the ‘God’ Category

A Shared Joy

DadAndSonWhat father hasn’t tried to share a joy with his son?

A sunrise, a field of bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes, a particularly tasty treat – we share not because we are lonely, crave gratitude, or need the affirmation, but because we enjoy bringing a wonderful discovery to someone we cherish.  When their eyes light up and they smile with delight – Wow!  Our attempts are not always received, but when they are there is something lovely about a shared joy.

Our heavenly Father created not because he was lonely, craved gratitude, or needed affirmation, but to share his great love for his eternal Son.  By the Holy Spirit he attempts to make his Son known and loved.  That wonderful Son we know as Jesus volunteered to do what was needed to remove all obstacles to sharing that joy and by the Holy Spirit attempts to share with us what he loves about his eternal Father.

His attempts are not always received, but when they are there is something lovely about a shared joy.

These things I speak in the world, that they may have my joy fulfilled in themselves…Father, ….I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” – John 17

-fritz

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Shh!

“He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” — Psalm 91:1

God has a secret!

King David called it a place1 of God’s protection and a shelter from strife and pride.2 Job, (pronounced with a long “o” and best known for his personal suffering) said it was a place where wisdom lived but that it had only been heard of, never yet discovered.3

The apostle Paul called that place a mystery, hidden for hundreds of years … until NOW! He said he, actually, discovered it and so could we!

He wrote the mystery is found by getting connected, literally, to God through Jesus!

This mystery has been kept in the dark for a long time, but now it’s out in the open. God wanted everyone, not just Jews, to know this rich and glorious secret inside and out, regardless of their background, regardless of their religious standing. The mystery in a nutshell is just this: Christ is in you” – Colossians 1:26-27

Not a euphemism, when joined to Christ we become a physical extension of himself — so much so that what we do in our bodies, good and bad, is what we are doing with and to Christ.4

When God looks at us he is seeing an extension of his son. Christ’s payment on the cross for sin, ours5. The Holy Spirit working in Jesus, now working in us. Our debts, his. Our bodies, his. Our needs, his. His closeness to the Father, ours. And when Jesus returns for us we shall be like him.6

This changes everything!

– fritz
1. Psalm 91:1
2. Psalm 31:20
3. Job 28:20-23
4. 1st Corinthians 6:13-17
5. 1st John 4:17
6. 1st John 3:2

Related Post: “Thin Places” — March 20, 2012

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How do you know, our pastor asked, when God is calling you to be his or to a particular service or ministry?

One little boy describes it this way, he said, “It’s like fishing. You can’t see the fish or hear it, but you feel it tugging on your line.”

God’s call is like that, when he’s calling you may not see or hear anything new or different, but you feel Him tugging on your heart.

— fritz
Related Post: “What’s My Calling” – June 27, 2010
Related Post: “Itchy” – January 11, 2012

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scooterclub2

Simon Peter answered [Jesus], “Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.” — John 6:60

There is a retired mechanic in the area who calls himself the “Honda Doctor”. Anything too old for dealers to fix he will.

One thing, though, he works on his own terms. He doesn’t need you but if you have an old Honda motorcycle you need him. He charges a flat hourly rate plus parts. Do his repairs take too long? Sometimes. Are the parts too expensive? Sometimes. Your only option is to either choose him to fix your bike or not and don’t tick him off.

God is like that in some ways. He works on his own schedule his own way. Does he take too long? Does he cost more than expected? Sometimes. Our only real option is to either choose him or not.

Fortunately for us he is good, loves us dearly, and works all things to our benefit.

The Honda Doctor doesn’t do that.

— fritz.

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“Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” — God (Job 1:8)

When one thinks of suffering, Job traditionally comes to mind. Even God said that among people he was “perfect”. Yet, God allowed Job to go through troubles that make thinking people cringe. Why?

God does not answer that question directly but, like a good teacher, he leaves clues for those who really want to know.

Among those “in the earth” Job was as good as it gets but there has only ever been one completely free of sin and self — and it wasn’t you, me, or even Job.

“And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.” — God (Ezekiel 22:30)

As good as Job was, there were things that could only be learned through extended emotionally difficult times. During these seasons compassion is learned, God’s ability and desire to do all the carrying, all the heavy lifting, all the providing is learned. We learn how to focus on God’s approval, to be attentive to his ways. We learn how to pray.

These things we must learn to walk with God and they can only be learned by walking with God through suffering. Strange as it may seem, it was God’s goodness that allowed Job to go through the difficulties. Job not only ended up with twice as much as he had before but he ended up with a changed heart, too.

Something to think about.

— fritz.
Related Post: “Job’s Misunderstanding” – May 31, 2011

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Jumping out of the boat, Peter walked on the water to Jesus. But when he looked down at the waves churning beneath his feet, he lost his nerve and started to sink. He cried, “Master, save me! – Matthew 14:29-30 (MESSAGE)

It was night and the weather was storming! The disciples were in danger, barely making any progress, barely staying afloat when Jesus comes walking by on the water on foot. They were terrified thinking it was a ghost, wouldn’t you?

Peter sceptically said, “If you’re for real then let me do it, too!”

“Come on!”, Jesus said and Peter walked on water. Metaphorically so do we.

Events and problems swarm around us threatening to capsize and drown. Jesus is there, barely visible through the haze, undisturbed by the commotion. He’s not a ghost, not a make-believe deity. He tell us we can be safe with him through it all — all we have to do is abandon our trust in the boat and go with him.

When walking with him, however, don’t expect the wind to stop or the water to thicken. Keep focused on his call and his care; it’s all there for the asking.

— fritz

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Tax men came to Peter and asked, “Does your teacher pay taxes?”

Peter said, “Of course.” But as soon as they were in the house, Jesus confronted him. “Simon, what do you think? When a king levies taxes, who pays—his children or his subjects?” He answered, “His subjects.”

Jesus said, “Then the children get off free, right?

Jesus made a special point to Peter that the kings of this world don’t charge their own children taxes. There are certain advantages to being a relative of the one in power.

Same with God — His Children live in His kingdom for free, too.

Why point that out? Because receiving Christ changes a person from being one of God’s “subjects/servant” to one of God’s “children”

So then, you are no longer a slave but a child. And since you are his child, God will give you all that he has for his children. – Galatians 4:7 (Good News Bible)

If you are Christ’s come to God as his child not his servant; it will change your prayer life!

— fritz

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