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Let’s face it: there are times in our lives in which circumstances are definitely less than desirable; you wish you were a few years older, a few years younger, you had more money, you had a girlfriend, boyfriend, or spouse, or you want a different president elect. During these times, you need to realize that God has a plan for why you were put on this earth during the time you were, why you’re single, and why Barack Obama is the president elect. We need to realize this, and trust God to reveal to us, or not reveal to us, why he has put us in the present circumstances. God has a purpose for every life he has chosen to save, and he will use them to his glory. The next time you approach a less than desirable circumstance, or if you are in one right now, remember that God knows why you’re in that circumstance, and you might eventually see and reap the blessings of those circumstances. If not, remember that God has his reasons, even if we don’t always understand them.
I’m going to begin a series on trust, and what this means for us as Christians. This would be the first one.
There can be many causes of fear. My personal fears are being bold, and even more than that, a fear of losing the ones I care about and love. Sometimes, I get quite overcome by these fears. This is not what God want us to do. Paul reminds us to “be anxious about nothing.” So, in essence, being afraid is a sin against God, because fear is a lack of trust in Him. We must lean on Christ at all times, and trust that he will provide for us. He knows exactly what you’re going through, and if you cast your cares on Him, He will bless you, in whatever way is most pleasing to Him. The next time you’re scared or worried, pause and thank God for the circumstance or relationship, and ask Him to help you trust in Him, no matter what.
“Shall I take from your hand Your blessings, yet not welcome any pain? Shall I thank You for days of sunshine, yes grumble in days of rain? Shall I love You in times of plenty, then leave You in days of drought? Shall I trust when I reap a harvest, but when winter winds low, then doubt? Oh let Your will be done in me, in Your love I will abide. Oh I long for nothing else as long as You are glorified.”~Sovereign Grace Ministries, “As Long as You Are Glorified”
Have you ever thought about how strange death is? How, one moment, someone is full of life, can move, communicate, contain warmth, and blink, and the next moment, all of this goes away. How sticking something sharp in a single organ can cause everything you’ve ever had in your life to come to an end.
I think for a Christian, death, in a very strange way, can be a beautiful thing. It shows even more than something does happen to us when we die. Otherwise, what is death? I think that when someone dies, their soul leaves their earthly body and goes to live with Christ with a brand new, perfect body for eternity. Though it’s still extremely sad to never have a person around again, we should be joyful that, if they are a Christian, they are with their Savior.
I have recently been thinking about what a reality death is. How, one day, sooner or later, we will face death, whether it be an instant one, or a long drawn-out, disease or injury-caused death. This really makes you pause and consider how you spend your days. When you reach the end, do you want to face it, thinking, “man, I totally wasted my life,” or, “wow, I really accomplished some great things for Christ in my lifetime.” I know I want to die with the peace that I’ve lived every moment for the sake of Christ. I know that sometimes I fail, and get lazy, but I really want to try to live out my life for Christ and His kingdom, and I encourage you to do the same.
Look around you. Cars whoosh past on their way to wherever, people walking down the street of a city, rushing to work, hurrying up to eat lunch in an hour, and going to various appointments. Students walk as fast as they can so as not to be late to their next class. We live in a world of deadlines. Hardly ever a day goes by without a deadline of some sort, though some are easier to accomplish than others. In this world that we live in, it can be incredibly easy to get stressed out. “Well, of course,” you might say, “Everyone gets stressed out.” But is this really the right attitude to have? Is stress really anything besides a failure to trust in God to accomplish our daily tasks? I think that’s exactly what it is. When I look at my life, and all the deadlines i have: piano lessons, voice lessons, guitar lessons, school work, test prep, church and chores, just to mention a few, it is really easy to get overwhelmed. But I have got to learn to stop taking the responsibility to accomplish all these things. After all, I wouldn’t be able to accomplish anything at all without Christ. I can’t do anything on my own anyways, so why do I pretend to have control? Well, of course, the answer to that is sin. But, I need to pray earnestly so that I might become a trusting student in a stressed-out world.
Last week, I went with my mom to her dermatologist appointment. While I was sitting in the office waiting, I picked up a dermatology magazine. On the cover of this magazine was an advertisement for a brand new, age-defying skin treatment. Curious about why something of the sort would be enough to make the cover, I began to read. It did not take me long to get through their tricky language to what was the key ingredient to this anti-aging breakthrough. This key ingredient was the skin tissue of a fetus. I was shocked. Now, not only is abortion now the simplest way to get rid of an unwanted pregnancy; it’s an industry. Now, not only doctors are getting rich by feeding their patients lies; they are getting rich by taking the aborted babies’ skin, putting it into an anti-aging cream, and selling it to women who haven’t quite come to accept the fact that they are getting OLD, and want to keep their skin as wrinkle free as possible for a few more years. Our culture is lying to pregnant mothers, killing babies, feeding the vanity of women, and getting rich! Please tell me that you agree in that this is not right.
The current culture is so quick to give away love. Kids begin dating in middle school, teenagers give their virginity away and sometimes become pregnant, some colleges allow you to sleep wherever you want to on weekends; not to mention how much we’ve lost the value of a kiss. Kisses are thrown around as just something you do when you’re going out with somebody, and usually don’t have much meaning. How did we lose the value of love?
I think the answer to that is this: these things have become not a response to true love, but a replacement for love. I think that too often the attitude is, “well, if he/she kisses well, then maybe I’ll consider taking this seriously.” That is absolutely the wrong attitude to have. Before you even consider kissing someone, you should be so in love with them that either (a) it doesn’t matter, or (b) you don’t know the difference, which is by far the best. But see, the point is, we equate love with these things when what love really is, is loving a person so much that you desire to have a relationship with them in that way, but the difference is that you are willing to wait until when the proper time has arrived.
Well, this is basically a follow-up to my previous post. I said in the last post that I strongly believe in courtship and a relationship reflecting our relationship with Christ, but what exactly is that going to look like?
First of all, I think the relationship is going to reflect certain attributes not seen in those of unbelievers. As Christians, every other part of our life should reflect the glory of Christ, so why should relationships be any different? It is so easy to get caught up in your love of the other person that you can forget your one true and never-ceasing lover: God. The one that loved you enough to choose you, and then send His son to fulfill that election, so that you could be saved from sin. Isn’t it completely ridiculous to never remember this in our relationships? Isn’t it insane to never thank God for, first of all what He’s done for us, and then thank Him that he has given us this person!
Another thing that should reflect Christ in our relationship is the way that we interact with one another. I am reminded every time I see the portion of the Pigrim’s Progress play in which Passion and Patience are being displayed for Christian. Passion desires everything now, and then, a little while later, has nothing left. Patience waits for the governor’s time to receive her gifts, and is in that way very happy. Christian remarks in the play that Patience’s waiting must be a difficult thing to attain. I said a little bit about this in my previous post, but wanted to add it in this one. God has blessed us with gifts that are to be used between two people, and those two people alone. As the world uses those gifts prematurely, like Passion, they are soon left with nothing to endulge in. Like Patience, we should wait for the “Governor’s” timing to endulge in our gifts, namely, sharing them only with the one we are spending the rest of our lives with.
Not only do we want to reflect Christ by using the gifts he has given us wisely, but with our words and actions as well. We should always display a spirit of gentleness, love, and graciousness. We should never be harsh with one another, but instead respect what the other has to say, and show how much you love them by not disrespecting their love. Imagine what would have happened if Christ, while dying on the cross, with people mocking him, and he had yelled, “SHUT UP! DON’T YOU REALIZE I’M DOING THIS FOR YOU?!” Instead, he prayed for them, telling God to forgive them, for they did not know what they were doing. I really think this sort of attitude should be reflected in your relationship with each other.
Of course, there is no such thing as a perfect relationship. But, a relationship that is reflecting the love of Christ is as close to perfect as you can get.
Well, I’m a girl, so I’m going to talk about something I love: guy-girl relationships. Being in love is one of the most beautiful experiences in the world. What is the best way to pursue these relationships?
I am personally a huge fan of courtship. What better way is there than to your friends and family to get to share in watching your relationship unfold? Rather than dating, where only the two of you get to share in the relationship, many people do. Though I don’t believe it’s right for the guy and girl to never be alone (walks hand-in-hand down the road, conversations on the swing in the yard, ROMANTIC!), cause I think that if they’re never alone, that could result in problems when they finally do get alone. I do, though, think it’s really cool for the majority of the time to be spent with the family and doing stuff with groups. This leaves less opportunity to experience things that should be left for engagement and marriage.
Another thing I most definitely believe in about guy-girl relationships is to leave kisses for at the earliest, engagement, and sex for marriage. What could be better gifts than to give your fiance your first kiss, and then as your spouse, your virginity? It’s the way God meant for it to be. He didn’t mean for us to go around wasting special gifts that he’s given us on people we don’t want to marry. These precious gifts were meant to be shared between two people, and those two people alone.
Guy-girl relationships are so amazing. The last thing I want to point out is, when we are in a relationship, we are supposed to love each other as Christ loved us. That’s the way we were created. We are supposed to be enamored with each other’s beauty, respect each other, and love each other, and each other alone.
Well…this is something I really wanted to say in the God topic in Faith and Spirituality, but they had already moved on when I got to it.
A “f***ing genius” said in one of his posts on page 2, “[the picture given of women in the Bible is that the] woman is weak, easily tempted, not to be trusted, led into sin, a temptress that leads man into sin, virginity is a virtue in women (but not in men), women get just one husband but men get many wives.” You know what? Almost all of these examples are true (I’m not sure where he got that women are not to be trusted, after all, it says something about trust in Proverbs 31, so I won’t deal with that one…). First of all, the idea that the woman is weak. Compared to men, you know what? We ARE weak. Think about it. Most women are just built smaller than most men. Women body builders have to take male hormones to get the muscles they have. We are just made to be weaker, and “the weaker vessel.”
Second of all, we are easily tempted. Um, excuse me, was it the man or the woman that took the fruit from the tree? I believe it was the woman. Maybe God was saying something here, I don’t know.
Thirdly, women are led into sin. I’m not sure how he got this one, seeing as the Bible clearly states that we are all sinful…so I’m not really gonna touch on this one.
Fourth, a temptress that leads man into sin. This is something that I think every woman deals with. We all have a portion of our body that we like somewhat, and would, secretly, like to flaunt it. Sometimes, we end up doing just that. Do you think that’s right to our guy friends? We are leading them into sin by tempting them. I have to confess doing this once or twice, not necessarily in what I wear, but in words, and I am extremely sorry for doing this now.
Fifth, virginity is a virtue in women (and not in men). I’m not sure where in the Bible it says it is not a virtue for male virginity, but anyways, I guess what I would say for this one is, there are very few male prostitutes out there. I mean, there are gay ones, but…we won’t go there.
Sixth, the idea that a man has many wives, but a woman can’t have several husbands. First of all, this idea was changed in the New Covenant, where it clearly states that only one man and one woman should be joined together in matrimony, and that a man should take pleasure in her alone. Second of all, I think most of the men that had several wives in the Old Covenant were like kings, and men of a lot of power, which in those days, there were not very many ruling queens or women that had authority.
Just think about the way men and women are made. As I have already said, men are strong and tough, and women are a lot more moody and weak. As a woman, I know there is something within me that makes me want to submit to men, and love my future husband by showing him that I know that he is the head of the relationship. There is just something naturally beautiful in that. Also, to throw this in, simply in the way sex works, it is obvious that the man is supposed to be stronger.
Finally, please don’t get me wrong; it is totally unjust for a man to beat, rape, or abuse a woman in any way, or in other words, abuse his male rights. I think women still have value, after all, there would be quite a population shortage if we weren’t around…lol.