Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Loving your neighbour

    It's another late night, Another Subway sandwhich has been eaten, another fantastic rehearsal of "Our Town" has finished, another couple hour long nap in the recliner has been had, and I am awake again. As I look through all of my new facebook statuses of the day, I stumble upon this blog. I can't say I agree with it all, I can't say I condone it all, there is in fact even a little bit of language in it too (as a warning)  and at first glance, I can't even say this person himself is a "Christian" (He after all says himself that he's not religious), but he brings up a very good point, and I think the blog is worth reading.

    It is kind of a long blog, so if you don't have time to read it all, I will try and sum it up. He talks about a friend of his, that he had talked on the phone with, and his friend is......gay. He says that he lives in a town that homosexuality is still frowned upon, and as a whole, people deny this person. They ignore him, reject him, and shun him because of who he his. The whole message behind the blog is about love, and no matter who the person is, what they are like, or what they believe, we should show love to everyone. This as well has been on my heart a little bit, and after reading Mr. Pearce's blog, it prompted me to write one of my own.

    I believe as human beings we should show love to one another, but allow me to take it one step further. As Christians, I believe it is even more so important for us to do so. As Christians, I believe we have a duty.....no, a calling to show others love. The Bible says in Matthew 22:37-40:

"Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets."

    "As you love yourself"? Really? Think about it, how much do we love ourselves? Sometimes we can too much! We love ourselves a lot! We love ourselves enough to take hours each day cleaning up, getting dressed, making ourselves look nice, etc. (not that this is bad, I do it myself!)  Then of course there's all those times that we worry about what other people think of us. There's all those times we make excuses not to do something because we are worried about our self image. I think if we were all honest with ourselves, as human beings, we could all say that we love ourselves a lot! So as we think about others, Jesus said that after loving God with all of our heart soul and mind, as the second GREATEST commandment, we should love our neighbour as we love ourselves. So why don't we live it! Too often we look at people of the world, whether homosexual, gothic, pierced, tattooed, alcoholic, smoker, ______..........Well, I'll let you fill in the blank, We look at those people, and we think "Ooooooo, yuck!" These are the kinds of people that we don't want to be around, these are the kinds of people that we ignore, we avoid, and we shun, but should we? What does the Bible say? Is that how much we love ourself? I don't think so! As Christians, I believe those are the kind of people we should go up to, we should shake their hand, pat them on the back, if you know them well enough, sure, even give them a hug, pray for them and show them a little bit of God's love.

    When we were born, we were each born a sinner. Romans 3:23 says:

"For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God"

    So are we any different from them? We each are sinners, and I believe that anyone can look at us and could think "Oooooo, yuck!" All of our sins are as filthy rags, and of course, if we know Jesus as our personal saviour, He has washed all of our sins away, but that doesn't make us any better than those who don't! That doesn't mean we have to ignore, avoid, or shun those other people. Of course we as well have to be careful not to get too caught up that we get involved in some of the things of the world, but we should show them God's love, we should pray for them, and we should love them as we love ourselves. I think too often we are quick to jump to conclusions as well. We judge people based on their looks, their sounds, their smells, their actions, and sometimes we don't even know the whole story! The Bible as well says in Matthew 7:1:

"Judge not, that ye be not judged"

    We all know that we don't like being judged, so why are we so quick to jump to conclusions with other people? As I said before, we are all sinners, we were all created equal, we are all God's precious creation, so why do we judge other people as filthy rags? We should:

"Walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour" Ephesians 5:2

    As I have taken it one step further, allow me to take one more minute to take it one more step further. I think about the church. So often we are quick to judge in the church as well. You can step into church, and there are people talking in little groups here, and little groups there. It's often turned into a school yard where there are jocks, cheerleaders, band members, glee club, the popular kids, and the new kids. Everyone is split up into little groups, and people are quick to judge each other. These people think they are better than others, these people have more money than others, these people are more athletic than others, these people are better looking then others. and the list goes on and on and on! To be honest, I get tired of it all! I don't believe that is the way God created the church to be! He wants us all to be a family. He wants us all to love each other equally. He wants us all to live together in unity, and that's the way I believe God meant it to be! Psalm 133:1 says:

"How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity"

    People worry about so many silly things. Whether people wear shorts or not, whether people still use hymnbooks or not, what kind of music is listened to, what version of the Bible is used etc. While I think it is important to know what you believe on some of those things, I don't think it's worth judging people over! It's not worth starting fights or quarrels, and I don't think anything is worth ignoring or avoiding anyone for! We should all live in a way that is glorifying to God. In fact, we shouldn't judge other churches either! I think while we may have different beliefs, while we don't know some of the people very well, while we may not like some of the same things, we should still take some time to pray for other churches as well too! While it is good to focus on our core church family, I think it is as well good for churches to come together, to pray for each other, to lift each other up, we should show the world God's love. And as Christians, we should live together in unity.

    I'm not trying to beat it over your head. I know as I'm writing, I'm reminding myself as well. I think it's something important to remember. We shouldn't be so quick to judge. God created us all equally, and while some people may seem as filthy rags, that's the way we were/are at one point or another. Instead, we should show other people God's love. As well, We shouldn't worry about silly little things. We shouldn't create our own group and leave others out. God wants us to live in Unity, and we all should live for the same purpose of glorifying God.



P.S. Thanks for taking a little time to sit down and read. I hope it all made sense. I always worry about whether my thoughts come out the right way in words, so I hope the main point was able to come across. I would love to hear what you think too! I always enjoy discussion, so feel free to share your thoughts with me too. I apologize that I haven't been able to write recently. It takes some time for me to sit down, think, and write, so I'm not able to do it as much as I would like to, but I am always thinking about it, and I want to be able to do it more often. I still have an idea in my mind that I want to write about, but I feel if I'm going to do it, I want to do it right, so please stay tuned. Thanks again for reading, and hopefully I will write again soon! Have a Blessed day! :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Day that will live down in history

    Ladies....Gentlemen......My Fellow Americans, Novermber 6th, 2012, is a day that will live down in history. It is a day we will tell our children, our grandchildren, and generations to come. It is a day that will be written in History books, newspapers, and will be shown on TV for years to come. Today was the 2012 Presidential Election.

    This year was my first opportunity, and a privelege at that, to vote. As the election has now ended, political ads and calls have simmered down, and facebook is starting to heat up, I read the many different responses. I have read things from people rejoicing, to people mourning, people saying they will move away, to the plea of our country's unity. I must say I have mixed feelings about our election......In fact, I'm almost speechless! I have to say that part of me is surprised, and part of me is not at all.

    I can't say I believe we will ever have an election where everyone will be happy. We'll always have people deciding Democrats, or Republicans, Pro-Life or Pro-Choice, Homosexuality, or Straight, Liberalist, or Communist......Well, I think you get the point. There will always be someone taking sides. But when you get to the bottom of things, It doesn't matter what political party you are a part of, there is a power higher than any person that could ever be elected. As wonderful as our country may be, there is a place better than America, and there is a plan greater than any Bill that can ever be passed.

    Of course no man is perfect, We will always be able to find something wrong with anyone. So why do we put our trust in the imperfect humans of this world? They are no more perfect than we are! As for me, I know in the end "My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus blood and righteousness. I dare not trust the sweetest frame, but wholly lean on Jesus name. On Christ the Solid Rock I stand all other ground is sinking sand".

    Will the next four years be easy, I can't say they will! Will we be fixing some mistakes that people past, present, or future may make. Yes, I believe we will! But I know that God is in control.

Psalm 118:6 says:

 "The LORD is on my side, I will not fear. What can man do unto me?"

    As an American citizen, I believe it is not only my privelege, but my right to vote. And while sometimes I will have to decide between Democrat and Republican, I am happy to know that the Lord is on my side. Whichever wins, I don't have to fear! As President, Man will have to make some decisions, some will be good, and some will not be so good, but God has a perfect plan for each of our lives, He knew who would be president, even before George Washington was born. He knew how our economy would turn out even before Noah was floating his stock. And he knew the plans He had for us before the creation of the world (Jeremiah 29:11)

    So why do we worry? Why do we fear? Why do we think the end of the world is drawing near? I know God is in control, and He has a perfect plan, so just try putting your trust in God, instead of putting it in man.

    I hope this post made sense. Whether this is the end of our country as we know it, I can't say for sure, whether God will come back in the next four years, He very well could, I know I'm anxious and ready!

 Whatever happens, I know these 10 things will always be true:

1. God will still be on His throne
2. Jesus will still be King of kings and Lord of lords.
3. The Bible will still have all the answers to every problem.
4. The tomb will still be empty.
5. Jesus will still be the only way to heaven.
6. Prayer will still work - it will still make a difference and God will still
    answer prayer.
7. The cross, not the government, will still be our salvation.
8. There will still be room at the cross.
9. Jesus will still save anyone who places their faith and trust in Him.
10. God will still be with us always - He will never leave us or forsake us.
But let's not focus on which party won, and which party lost, let's focus on the one that is in control of it all!

"Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God" ~Romans 13:1

    So this election, whether you voted for Democrat or Republican, I thank you for being a part of the great country we live in. Our President has now been elected, and whatever the outcome of our country may be, I'm putting my trust in God. I look forward to seeing what He has in store for the future! God Bless!

P.S. I apologize for not writing in a while, I want to write more, and I have a topic in my head that I want to write about next, that is branching off of my last blog post. I just now need to find the time, energy, ideas, and words to put it together. I feel if I'm going to do it, I should do it right! Anyways, Feel free to share your thoughts with me, I'd love to know what you think too. Have a great night!

~Daniel~ :)