A Day In The Life (Episode IV)

Sunday morning.  Normally I would be getting ready for church.  Today, I have to go to work.  The schedule of a Professional Turf Hydration System Engineer is at times demanding and has no wiggle room.  Delays, unexpected problems, and even the occasional mistake (although rare, they have been known to occur; but on the level of Bigfoot sightings) can throw a perfectly planned schedule completely out of the nearest window.  When jobs do not get completed on time, and there is no possible way to fit them into the following week, that leaves working on your only day off as the only way to keep your client base happy.  Happy clients are good, because they keep the business successful.  A successful business is the goal because that’s what pays the bills and feeds the family.  Although I will hate missing out on the fellowship with my church family, the Sunday meal with my own family, and my Sabbath, I have to do what it takes to get the work done.  As long as I set aside time for God in my day and do all that I can to bring glory to Him, I will be successful in all that I do.

While my chosen profession can be typically classified as a luxury service (I get paid to provide water delivery systems to keep the grass greener on the other side) I want to pay respect to those that are working today to keep us safe.  To all of our brothers and sisters in blue (police), red (firefighters), white (EMTs), and most importantly, the ones in shades of camouflage (all of our armed forces).  These men and women put their lives on the line daily and make it possible for me to do what I enjoy.  I thank you all for your service and I thank God for you being you.

As you go through your Sunday, remember to thank God.  Without Him you wouldn’t be here (hopefully reading this post).  Keep those that protect our lives and freedoms in your prayers.  Without them, you could not enjoy the life we are privileged to enjoy in this wonderful country of ours.  God bless you and yours.

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No Post Today

Due to unavoidable circumstances, today’s post has been cancelled. There will be no post today.

*This no post post is simply to keep my posting streak active*

Now move along. Nothing to see here folks. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.

Verse of the Day

Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.  (Proverbs 3:7 NIV)

 

Be humble.  Do not brag or boast.  Do not become prideful.  Respect the Lord and turn from sin.

When we become too dependent on ourselves, or too confident in our own abilities, we forget the One that gave us all that we have.  All good things come from God.  He deserves our praise and thanks for His blessings.

 

When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.  (Proverbs 11:2 NIV)

Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.  (Proverbs 13:10 NIV)

 

Praise the Lord.  Praise the name of the Lord; praise him, you servants of the Lord.  (Psalm 135:1 NIV)

May the peoples praise you, God; may all the peoples praise you.  (Psalm 67:3 NIV)

 

Give thanks to God for all He has given you.  Use your gifts to bring glory to Him.  You will find more success than if you claim the glory of your achievements for yourself.  Love God and be blessed, but remember that he blesses us so that we can also be a blessing to others.

A day in the Life (Episode III)

Today’s verse of the day post will be published later today, largely due to the magnitude of the meaning behind it, but also partly due to the fact that I woke up late today.  After fellowship with our church family; dinner with my wife and son; talking with my mother about the hurdles she is facing now that her company has shut down her office; and beginning a new Bible study with my wife, which is something life seems to have taken every opportunity to get in the way of; I managed to get to sleep somewhere around 12:30.  The alarm went off at 5, shortly after our son crawled into bed with us.  I finally pried myself away from the loving embrace of my pillow to start the day around 5:30, only to discover that a dirty pull-up lay in my immediate future.  Nothing says good morning like the smell of someone else’s poo before the first cup of coffee.  I apologize if anyone has a weak stomach.  Have children and it will cure that.  In short, I’m starting the day behind the Eight.  Tired, check.  Morning routine off schedule, check.  Improperly caffeinated, check.  That said, I thanked God for every blessing I have today, starting with the most important.  I am here to write this post.  God granted me the grace of another day.  It may not have started out in the most ideal fashion, but it did start.  And no matter what problems I may face today, they are not bigger than God’s ability to raise me above them.

Be thankful for what you have, even if what you have is not enough.  Your not enough could be someone else’s bounty they are dreaming of.  Thank God for all He has and will done for you today.

Have a blessed day.

Verse of the Day

All scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.  (2 Timothy 3:16 NIV)

 

The entirety of the Bible is the living Word of God.  It was given through the hands of men, by the Holy Spirit, to serve as a guideline for how God’s people are to live.  Think of it as one part rule book, one part love letter, and one part promissory note.

 

In the beginning, we are given an account of the creation of all things.  Through the creation story we see how man was intended to live, the giving of the first law, and the introduction of sin into the world, resulting from the breaking of the one rule.  (Genesis 2:17)  Throughout the remainder of Genesis we see the downward spiral of man, the wrath of God at the depravity of His creation, and the consequences that man’s actions carried. (Genesis 6-9)  Through that, we also see God’s love.  He could have completely blotted man from the earth and started over.  He performed a partial reboot through Noah and the great flood, but He could have just as easily destroyed Adam and Eve and started over.  Instead, God showed His faithfulness to His creation and allowed life to continue.

 

In the Exodus from Egypt God hands down the Law through Moses, which becomes known as the Mosaic Law.  It is the full rule book on how God intends for His people to live and the consequences for breaking the law.  Many people today get hung up on the minutiae of the Law given to the Israelites.  Much of that law is not applicable to all people, as it serves as the foundation of the Jewish faith, however we are given the groundwork for how our relationship with God and with our fellow man is supposed to look.

 

All through scripture, we see the influence of God’s love and faithfulness.  Man’s rebellion against God was an offense punishable by death, but God desires for us to live.  For this reason, He sent Jesus to bear our punishment.  This is the ultimate act of love, one the we as humans could never be capable of.  Jesus was a fulfillment of the Mosaic Law.  He lived the life that God intended for all of us.  He was faithful to God, resisted the temptations of sin, and replaced all of the livestock used to atone for sin.  He became our unblemished lamb, and paid the debt our sins have incurred.  For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23 NIV)

 

In Jesus, we receive God’s promise that all who believe, and follow His law, are redeemed and shall live in His kingdom forever.  God created man to inhabit the earth and to live in relationship with Him.  Sin destroyed the communion with God and cast man into the abyss.  Jesus shines His light into the abyss and illuminates the path that restores us to God’s glory.  Through Him, all sin is erased and forgiven.  Through Him our soul is saved from death and given life.

 

Scripture is our rule book.  Through it we are given the model for our life.  It is the image of God defined.  Obedience, justice, love, faithfulness, righteousness.

Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him.  (Psalm 128:1 NIV)

Follow justice and justice alone, so that you may live and possess the land the Lord your God is giving you.  (Deuteronomy 16:20 NIV)

We love because he first loved us.  (1 John 4:19 NIV)  

Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  (Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV)

Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin condemns any people.  (Proverbs 14:34 NIV)

Whoever pursues righteousness and love finds life, prosperity and honor.  (Proverbs 21:21 NIV)

 

In order to know the rules, you must read them.  In order to build the relationship, you must nurture it.  In order to find life, you must forsake yourself.

Dwell in God’s word.

Embrace Him.

Use the teachings of Christ to live an upright life.

Repent and bow before Him so that you may find life.

Go forth and spread God’s love to an unbelieving world.

 

“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”

“Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Matthew 22:37-39 NIV

“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.  And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

Matthew 28:19-20 NIV

Verse of the Day

Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments. But those who hate him he will repay to their face by destruction; he will not be slow to repay to their face those who hate him. (Deuteronomy 7:9-10 NIV)

Our God is loving and faithful. He upholds His promise to all that love Him and obey His laws in return. Obedience is not a condition of His love, because He loves all of His children. Obedience is a result of His love. We obey because of His love. Our faithfulness is rewarded through God’s promise that our iniquities will be removed from us and that we will dwell with Him forever.

God’s love and faithfulness to us are represented in Jesus. Because He loves us and does not want us to face eternal death, which is death of the soul and therefore separation from Him for all eternity, He sent Jesus to bear that penalty for us. Because of His faithfulness to us, He raised Jesus from the grave and made clear the path for us to enter heaven.

God’s love and faithfulness do not mean that we will live a carefree and easy life however. While He is a loving and faithful God, He is also a just and jealous God. He will test those that profess to love Him with hardships and strife to determine the strength of their love. While his love comes freely, the rewards promised do not.

Being a believer in Christ presents many challenges to the follower. The world hates God and all who love Him and therefore will try to destroy them. The strong in faith remain loyal to God, holding on to His promise of better things to come. The weak in faith turn from God and curse His name.

All who do not love and obey God will face His judgement and wrath. For while He loves all of His children, He does require justice for the wrongs done against Him. Jesus was the atonement for those wrongs, but only for those that choose to love and accept Him. For all who refuse Him, the consequence is suffering the same punishment of death of the soul.

Faithfulness and obedience to God brings life and joy. Faithlessness and disobedience brings death and suffering. The world teaches that we are to love the self more than anything else. Jesus teaches that we are to love God first and foremost, and that we are to love everyone else as our self. That is our first act of loyalty.

Are you for God; or are you against Him?

Which road will you choose?

Will you find yourself in God’s presence reaping His promised reward?

Or will you turn from Him and refuse to allow Jesus to take your place on the cross?

Verse of the Day

“But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living.  But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”  (Joshua 24:15 NIV)

 

The world is filled with many substitutes for God.  Money.  Power.  Fame.  Sex.  Alcohol.  Illicit drugs.  The list goes on.  People worship and are ruled by these things daily.  They take their idolaters down many different roads, but they all end in the same destination, death.  They all share one thing in common as well, they are all personal choices.

There is only one true God and following Him is also a personal choice.  He could speak a word and force every human in the world to bow down before Him, but He chose to give us the ability to decide for ourselves if we want to follow Him or not.

Our false gods promise us a life filled with happiness, security, control over our thoughts and feelings; but they are all empty promises.  They will never satisfy our desires.  No matter how wealthy you become, you will always want more money.  No matter how powerful you get, you will always desire more control.  No matter how famous you become, you will always want to be known by more people.  Sex will cause you to move from one encounter to the next seeking to fulfill a void that it was never meant to fill.  Drugs and alcohol will only numb the pain for a short time before you need more and more to forget the things you are running away from.

God is not like any of these things.  We were made to live with Him.  We were made to love God.  We all have a hole in our heart that we try to fill with one or more idols, but that hole is the size and shape of God; He is the only thing that can ever fill it.  The life He promises is filled with joy, happiness, and peace from pain and hardship.  Unlike our false gods, He can fulfill the promises He makes.

We were given freewill to make our own choices as to where our worship would go.  God requires obedience, but does not force it.  God wants our love to be like His love for us; genuine and unconditional.  No other “god” is like that.

The world offers many choices and many paths promising a happy life, but there is only one path that leads to life and happiness.  We are all free to make whatever choice we want.

I choose to follow the Lord.