18 June 2008

thoughts from James

We aren’t tempted of God no matter how we might feel like we are or decide that we want to blame things on Him…we are blessed beyond measure …seriously…we try to say that we do things ourselves or ‘own’ our own accomplishments because we felt like we worked the hardest to get there…really we don’t work hard at all…we are at the beck and call of our Lord and Savior. No matter if we believe in Him or not, He plays the largest part in our lives. Our leaves blow when He creates the wind. Our legs move when He allows us to command them to. It’s so evident that none of our own lives is truly ours. Our only decision comes in choosing to follow Him.
Going through temptations or trials in our lives seems to be the worst possible outcome for our lives. Dreams seem to be crushed beneath such a strong hand leaving us to wither in the rain and storm to come. However, amidst our lives falling apart and losses that we may come to face with reality-colored glasses upon our face, God is the one who’s there picking up the pieces. It says in James that he who endures these temptations and whirlwind storms of life will inherit the crown of life…that person will be able to live forever. Just think--life with someone who has been watching out for you for so long. Could you do that for someone? It would take so much for me. He doesn’t expect us to though. He just wants us to trust and follow hard after Him. He wants control of the wreck we call our lives--the twisted metal, flat tires, and busted glass…all of it. And like in Disney movies, He’s the one with the magical touch that makes everything right and beautiful again. It’s HIS healing rain that takes us from the torn shadows of what could’ve been to blooming flowers and the truth behind it all--the beauty in everything. It doesn’t matter how dead the flowers might look in the fall or how solemnly lifeless they seem in the cold winter months…if you wait…just a little while longer…those sticklike lifeless creatures will once again return to beauty, a masterpiece.
No matter our trials; not matter how dark our life gets at times or how far from anything good we seem to be, if we retain our love for God…if we hold on to just that and continue to put our trust in Him, and oh it is so hard, then in the spring we too will bloom in His glorious love and grace. He never said it would be easy for us to take up our cross and die daily to ourselves in order to follow Him. He DID say He would not see His righteous forsaken or His seed begging bread. WE are His seed. He has planted in us a seed to grow--we are His children, His disciples, we are the ones carrying His word, His life.
What good are we if we only hear what He has to say? Does it not say also in the Bible that we should spread the word among nations? Let everyone hear what the truth is and decide for themselves if they should believe it and follow it. How can we, as witnesses to the awesome creations of God-from the mountains and valleys to the trees and even our own bodies-be silent when we follow after something so amazing/ How can we not want to tell others about this? It’s nigh to impossible to contain the humility, divine inspiration , and just plain excitement found in our Creator. Yet we allow ourselves to become complacent in our everyday lives, living in routine and monotonous worship. He didn’t tell us we had to pray a certain number of times a day or create a routine of when we would pray to Him. He just said pray…because you WANT to. Pray because you need to come to Him with your problems and giddy happiness in the good and bad times. Come to Him for comfort; seek His guidance. He asked so little of us it seems, yet we have such a hard time even doing that. “be ye doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves”-James 1:22. Take action in your life and don’t just stand idly by without seeking Him out or telling others of everything He’s done in your life. Surely if you believe in the same God that I do you would feel such emotion, such an overflowing, soaring of your soul that you couldn’t contain such. If that’s the case then PLEASE tell someone, go out and seek others to follow with you. Be a fisher of men…bring the word to everyone. Introduce them to your Creator, Savior, God. And yes, He can be your Savior but He also has to be your God…you can’t have one without the other. Hearing the Word and not doing something about it, not telling others, is like putting on a face. To yourself, Christianity is amazing…on the inside you are ALL Christian. People aren’t going to see that. They can see the outside of others, not the inside. If they get to know you, then yes, they will see some sort of glimpse of God on the inside. We should be screaming of His glory and His mercy though. We should take just a little bit of time to change ourselves into something that will glorify Him to the utmost, whether it’s changing our wording, changing our reactions, habits, changing how we look even…every little bit will make a difference and soon all of your friends will say to themselves “oh, they’ve changed…what happened?” No, it won’t be you’ve got a boyfriend or girlfriend…you’ve just found who YOU truly are in the Lord. You want to live HIM out loud…not under a bushel or a coat or behind a door hidden in a closet. You want it to come out, you want everyone to see that you are living for God…that He is the true reason for your happiness and contentment.

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