Tag Archives: died

When Evil Shows Up

We were all shocked yesterday when we heard that a gunman entered a little Church in Sutherland Springs Texas and killed 26 people and injuring more.

I can’t even begin to fathom what was in that young man’s mind when he walked into that church. Understanding something like this is beyond us. What I absolutely know though is evil is rampant in our world and when it comes in to a place or personal life, the results can be devastating…even to Christians.

For some reason God’s people think we’re entitled to a pass from devastation and destruction. Exactly the opposite is true. Exactly the opposite is true (according to Jesus Himself) and that encompasses inside the walls of the church as well. Evil can exist and does exist literally everywhere. I wish God would protect us from horrible things happening, I wish we were all exempt from the experience of evil and sin. There was a time in my life when I expected God not to let me suffer anymore; I thought since I had been through some stuff, I’d had my turn and ‘land of milk and honey’ was my destination.  It shames me to admit that but after all, that’s what I was told when I got saved! Nothing could be farther from the truth. (Romans 8:35) I thought I’d failed as a Christian when bad or horrible things happened because I didn’t understand – now I understand better and I know that just because bad, evil things happen to us doesn’t mean God loves us less or has abandoned us in any way. (Romans 8:35-39)

Our hearts break just like everybody else’s. We lose people we love just like everybody else. We lose jobs and finances, material things that are important to us, and we feel it just like everybody else does. There is only one difference between us and people who don’t know Jesus and that difference IS Jesus.

I don’t pretend to understand how people will cope with what happened yesterday. I just know that Jesus is with them. I believe God weeps at the atrocities (He’s in us, with us, for us – he feels our pain, of course He does!) playing out now but I also believe He will comfort his people. He promises to do so, we must believe He’ll be true to His Word. In times like these His promises are all we have. Jesus himself said we will have (not might have) trials and tribulations but He’s overcome it all (John 16:33).

When we have pain we can go straight to Him and when we do, we can have that peace that passes all understanding – the peace only He can give. (John 14:27)  Miraculously through His Spirit that lives in us, His comfort comes. Those of us who have lived any time at all can testify to the fact that He eases our pain, He comforts our broken hearts and helps us by giving us His strength when we’re at our weakest so we can carry on through this Valley we’re walking through (2nd Corinthians 12:9). He will do the same for His precious people in Texas because he’s 100% faithful. He died so He could have a connection with us and that His Spirit could live inside of us for moments like these. He’s the Difference Maker. I’m quite sure many hearts are broken and many tears will be shed but I’m just as certain that the many hearts turning to God, seeking His touch will be comforted by His great presence and His matchless love.

In this world of uncertainty where evil seems to be out of control, where morals are definitely on the decline, and where there is nothing solid to hold on to we can rest assured, God is with us, walking us through these times of the unfathomable.  Jesus feels our pain and He’s right here to help us through it.

That’s all I know and today, that’s enough.

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A Dinner To Remember (John 12)

Just last week, he awoke hearing that familiar voice calling his name.   Bound by death-wrap in a cold tomb, he obeyed his Master by getting up and waiting for someone to unwrap him.  What had just happened?  I wonder what Lazarus remembered (?did he remember he died) what did he think about finding himself one minute on his deathbed and the next, standing while his loved ones unwrapped him? Can’t wait to talk to him about that experience!

Now alive, he finds himself sitting at the table with Jesus. Just a normal dinner; He had probably eaten with them many times as Lazarus is identified in the Bible as being loved by Jesus.  I must laugh.  This occasion had to be anything but normal.  Sick. Dead. Body wrapped in a tomb.  Over. The voice. Awake. Alive.  Out.  Now…sitting at a table with the One who called Him back to life.  Can you imagine?

No wonder Mary had to break out her best bottle of fragrance to anoint Jesus.  That kind of gratefulness for what Jesus had recently done for her family required a major display of gratitude.  I imagine she just had to do something to show Him what was in her heart.

Jesus has done the same for us, in a way.  We were walking dead, perhaps with no hope, little happiness, getting through this life as best we could then He came to us and changed us. Perhaps we were wrapped in the death-wrap of some addiction, chronic bad lifestyles or haunted by life-stealing horrible memories and never-ending pain when we heard ‘The Voice’, saw His face and became alive…really alive for the very first time.  If you haven’t had that experience, you can by simply calling His name to save you.  Believe me I know.  Jesus has changed everything for me, and continues to, every day of my life.

Let Jesus give you a “dinner to remember” today.

You’re Already Validated!

“I wish I had said that”; “I wish I hadn’t said this”; “I should have…” “I shouldn’t have…” all of us play these movies in our heads right? We all think about past relationships of all kinds and see what we DIDN’T do or say and totally forget the good we did. I think that’s a trick of the enemy. He wants you to think of yourself as an epic fail on all counts so you’ll keep quiet and not try to bless others.

Those close to me know I have a special needs son whom I adore, and most who get to know him and allow him to be part of their lives feel about him close to the way I do. I have watched him of late try so hard to follow all the rules both society and others place before him and some of it has been good. We all need to get along out there in the world and there are do’s and don’ts we have to follow to be accepted.Some of it, however, has not been good. I’ve watched him lose himself just to please someone else, all the while being nervous and afraid he’s going to do the wrong thing.

Have you ever tried to fit into a mold you were never intended to fit in just to please someone else? Just trying to be all they wanted you to be to please them only to find even that wasn’t enough. We so long to be accepted by others and to love others often finding somewhere along the way we forget who we are. We’ve all done it in some form or another. The common want of all humans is to be loved and accepted; maybe even validated.

We post things on Facebook and blog sometimes just to get that almighty like. Why do we try so hard to obtain the accolades and likes of people who maybe will never meet us, don’t know us personally or our struggles and the reasons why we are the way we are? True, we could all use a little tweak here and there…but to try to change ourselves to please someone else or live up to their expectations can be devastating.

You are who you are because God made you the way you are. All the good things and bad that have contributed to who you are now God allowed for HIS reasons and only He knows fully. He alone understands all your quirks, oddities and all your beauty. Even you don’t know you the way He does! He knows every single thing about you and guess what. HE LOVES YOU ANYWAY!! He’s the ONLY validation you need! Others may not understand you. They may even be intimidated by you or annoyed by you. God isn’t. He ACCEPTS you. He DIED for you. You ARE valid; you HAVE BEEN validated. What more do you need?

Yes, respect and consider other people and do your best to be a peacemaker. When they don’t respond how you think they should, love them anyway. If you’ve wronged someone and you know it, do your best to make it right. Pray for them. Pray for you. Don’t seek your worth in anyone else but God because you’ll never find it. People will take you in, tell you everything you want to hear, then disappoint and toss you for their next person. People are just people. God will always love you, no matter what. If you’re His, you’re a keeper!

Understand you are worth every drop of blood He shed because He shed it for you. He loves you. He will ALWAYS love you. I pray you decide His love, validation of you and your worth is enough.