Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A Stepping Stone to Faith

In a world where chaos is the new norm and the people are becoming desensitized to random acts of violence, sexual deviance, and any other example of immorality, one may find themselves asking, “Where’s God?” Proverbs 15:3 states that “the eyes of the Lord are in every place keeping watch over the evil and the good.” Even though the world is full of despicable things, Heavenly Papa sees and knows all, but it is only those “whose hearts are fully committed to him,” that will be truly saved through Jesus’ redemption.

The problem with that is that not everyone knows quite how to allow Jesus in their hearts. To reiterate my previous post, we as people are in a constant state of brokenness. It is only through this state that we can be redeemed because if we lived in a perfect world, there would be no need for Jesus. The issue that arises is that some people are so victimized by their brokenness that instead of seeking God, they begin to resent him and start to lash out in other ways. Think of the child who lost his/her parent to an untimely death and was left to fend for itself in a world that is harsh and cruel to vulnerable people. The girl too afraid to call herself pretty because her mom was too busy working two to three jobs to notice and her father wasn’t around, or the young boy who will never know what it is to be a man because he’s spent his days watching men disrespect his mother, with no Christian male role-model in his life. What about the children who spend hours alone or feeling unloved because their well off parents were too busy traveling the world without them or focused on loving their money? People who’ve been raped, battered, victim of hate crimes, the list goes on. All people find themselves victims at one point or another, but the way to pull you out of the dark place is to find something to believe in. To come to an understanding that Faith & Hope saves lives.

There are many means of learning about the word of Christ and how to apply it to the current situation and help you through. The Bible, real life situations and circumstances, other people, nature, music are all means of learning about Christ. All of these useful tools can be found in one place in particular: the church.

1 Corinthians 3:16-17 states that “you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you.” For those people who do not know God or have not accepted our Heavenly Papa in their lives, the church can be a stepping stone to allot them to begin thinking about a working relationship with Christ. It is only by accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior that one begins to realize that the body is a temple in which Heavenly Papa dwells.

My Bestie took me to fellowship with her at church and it was through those meetings when I began to acknowledge that there were changes I needed to make in my life and that I wanted to be a warrior for Christ. Since that time, I’ve had a much more peaceful life knowing that I can Hope for a better future by trusting in the Lord.

There is a Mount of Olives church in Saint Louis du Nord, Haiti that is in need of a stronger roof that will withstand the constant tropical storms that plow through the area. The building project is $15,000. So far, the organization has raised $12,520. That leaves only $2,480 left to be raised. If you’re interested in helping to secure a church home that will help bring the brokenhearted closer to Christ, please click on the following link Remember every little bit helps!! We all could use just a little more Jesus.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Roll of Thunder

Today, it’s storming outside. The thunder is roaring louder than lions, jet planes, and trains on tracks combined. It makes me feel at peace, and reminds me of a time of innocence. When it would thunder like this, as a kid, my grandmother would turn off all the lights and the televisions, unplug the phones, and say, “Hush child, that’s God talking.” I would sit still for about fifteen minutes, and then try to ease my way back into conversation about questions that danced around in my head. Each time, she would repeat the phrase, and the cycle would continue until I either fell asleep or the storm ended. I miss those days.

My grandma lives about 8 hours away now, and sometimes during storms, I call her and mention casually that its thundering and lightening outside, just to hear her say, “Hush child. That’s God talking. Get off this phone.” The phrase means something a little different to me now, and I’ve taken it to apply it not just to storms literally, but to problems (storms) that may arise in my everyday life. Any time, there is a storm brewing, I need to take the time to focus on the bigger picture that Heavenly Papa has planned.  

Whatever you want to call that tumultuous period in your life: storms, wilderness, mountains, rock bottom, etc., it is a time that Heavenly Papa is warning you to slow down, seek him, and see the bigger picture. I’m not sure if my grandma knows exactly how her words help to guide me through, but I now know that in the midst of a storm, I need to not focus on external factors that make up the storm, but be sure to hone into God and learn how to benefit from the storm.

I had the opportunity to watch the movie “Focus on the Family: Irreplaceable” in which the overall message was that we as people are all broken and it is through our broken state in which we can be redeemed. Redemption is the action of saving or being saved from sin, error, or evil. The documentary made a valid point when it affirmed that in order to become one with our Heavenly Papa, we have to go through pain and suffering, because if we are not tempted, broken, or in a constant state of loss, then  everything is perfect. In a perfect world, there is no need for redemption.
Storms are not only reminiscent of our struggles that force us to transcend, but they also reflect the relationship that our Heavenly Papa has with humanity. It’s this ongoing cycle; the reason behind our imperfections. Heavenly Papa gave us free will so that only those who truly believe in him and love him will be able to spend eternity with him in Heaven. When he administered that right, he knew that he would be opening himself up to disappointment because he’d expect everyone to follow him willingly, but he knew it would not be the case. I like to think that every time it rains, Heavenly Papa is shedding his frustrations with mankind, just like he did in Genesis 7:1,4 when he recognized that Noah “[was] righteous before [Him] in this generation,” and made the decision to “cause it to rain on the earth forty days and forty nights, and destroy from the face of the earth all living things that [he had] made.” While he is not sending great floods, thunderstorms reminds us that he is present and we need to seek him. Those who truly believe will “hush and listen.”