Getting Pass The Obvious
When you look at me what do you see? I want you to see the color of my skin. I want you to see the red hues that emanate as a result of my Cherokee heritage on my father’s side and the lightness in my eyes from the German ancestry on my mother’s side. I want you to see the dryness of my crinkly locks and yet feel the fineness of its touch. I want you to see the fullness in my lips and the roundness of my hips, it’s the way you created me. I had nothing to do with it.
When I look at you, I see everything as an expression of my love and a vehicle for my glory. Everything I create is a variation of the same theme like a symphony of life that plays over and over again. Purposely, the color, texture and depth change, but the rhythm remains the same forever connected to its composer. Each phrase is uniquely different. Each phrase is uniquely beautiful. Each phrase is uniquely mine, all culminating to its highest level of authority, greatness and power.
When God looks at each of us he sees pass the obvious.
John 9:1-3 As he walked along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned; he was born blind so that God’s works might be revealed in him.
Mark 1:40-41 A leper came to him begging him, and kneeling he said to him, ‘If you choose, you can make me clean.’ Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him, and said to him, ‘I do choose.
John 8:1-11 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery; and making her stand before all of them, they said to him, …what do you say? When they kept on questioning him, he said to them, ‘Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.
I give thanks and praise to God for every blessing. Today a special appreciation and humble thank you to Martha Shaw author of inlovewiththelord.wordpress.com a really wonderful and inspirational blog site for blessing me with this nomination. My ministry is to spread God’s word. Since I’ve started my blog I have encountered so many great blog sites with the same premise to spread God’s word with the hope of encouraging others to also believe. I have also met others who write to share life experience through poetry and prose, which can be very enlightening. I now have the honor of nominating others. Thank you again Martha for the opportunity.
This award, was created by Just Ramblin’ http://justramblinpier.wordpress.com/
. As per her wish there are no rules just blessings. It is nice to bless others for inspiring me with this award and I hope others will also inspired. by those I nominate. Copy the badge if you like by right mouse clicking on the image and saving the picture file to your computer. I encourage you to also check out Martha Shaw at inlovewiththelord.wordpress.com
The following are just a few great inspiring and interesting sites, some old and some new.
Lent: Day 6 – To those who claim to know a little bit about everything, does that include your knowledge of Christ? If so, where does that really place you in the larger scheme of things, among the foolish or the wise? Consider the eleven sons of Israel (Jacob), who thought they knew God’s plan for their lives, without realizing their devious participation in their own destiny. Ponder the first four disciples Jesus called to follow him. They were fisherman, who as Mark tells us, left the one thing they knew in depth, to pursue the one thing they knew only as a promise through scripture. However great or small, what ever we know about God through Christ, must take precedence over everything we think we know in this world. God’s word not only has power, it has ultimate authority. Our knowledge is challenged everyday. Do we have the courage to accept what we know about God in Christ, great or small, and allow that knowledge to lead in every situation of our lives? Do we have the courage to believe that surely God’s plan for our life throughout this journey is far greater than anything we could foolishly or wisely design for our selves? Perhaps, now is the time to increase that knowledge of Him, for no plan is greater than God’s plan.
Genesis 37:12-24 So when Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped him of his robe, …and they took him and threw him into a pit.
Mark 1:14-28 And immediately they left their nets and followed him.
1 Corinthians 1:20-31 Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? ‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.’
Psalm 47 For the Lord, the Most High, is awesome, a great king over all the earth.
Lent: Day 5 – As humans we have an uncanny propensity to latch on to people. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing for no one person is an island unto one self. Personal, business or otherwise, I believe we need relationships. As mature adults, our relationships, in connection with how we think and respond to one another, says something about who we are. For example, Paul in all of his education had one goal, to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ to all who would believe. He did not consider, that it was his responsibility to speak in educated terms, thus selectively appealing only to those who could understand what he was saying, by using eloquent speech. No doubt we are all drawn to people who are most like our selves. We have a tendency to travel the journey, in the direction of who we believe our selves to be. However, as Christians, regardless of the road we travel, it should always lead to the one common goal to proclaim the gospel. What purpose does it serve us, as brothers and sisters in the Lord, to argue about the road we travel as long as Christ is the only lead we follow? Lent is the opportunity to create a habit of meditation and contemplation of the scripture, in order that the Holy Spirit becomes the one who leads us to God who guides, supports and protects us along the way. Then ultimately, God’s purpose prevails.
1 Corinthians 1:1-19 …for Christ did not send me to baptize but to proclaim the gospel, and not with eloquent wisdom, so that the cross of Christ might not be emptied of its power.
Mark 1:1-13 He (John the Baptist) proclaimed, ‘The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.’
Genesis 37:1-11 His brothers said to him (Joseph), ‘Are you indeed to reign over us? Are you indeed to have dominion over us?’
Lent: Day 4 – Some say it takes a minimum of 30 days to train a specific behavior into a habit. Others say it takes a lifetime. I say it only takes one successful day at a time. All we really need is to be successful today and before you know it, many days will have become yesterdays. One day you will find your journey in this life focused on the hill, and know from whence your help comes. You will find that you remember the days of turmoil, only to remind yourself and others of how great God really is in this life, because of his mercy and his love, which endures forever. You live this journey, because He lives in you.
Philippians 4:10-20 I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
Ezekiel 39: 21-29 They shall forget their shame, and all the treachery they have practiced against me, when they live securely in their land with no one to make them afraid, when I have brought them back from the peoples and gathered them from their enemies’ lands, and through them have displayed my holiness in the sight of many nations.
John 17:20-26 I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.
I will extol you, O Lord, for you have drawn me up,
and did not let my foes rejoice over me.
Lent: Day 3 – At all times, is not the common goal a heavenly one? Yet, we argue. We disagree. Somebody has to be right. Right? How can this be? But what right do we have to expect others to think as we think, want what we want, and be what we are, when we our selves are imperfect? For the Christian, Christ is the only perfect model. To be of the same mind is not to be like one another but rather to be of the same mind as Christ. When our role models fail us most times we forgive them. As soon as we feel God has abandoned us we turn our backs. We lose faith. We ignore the perfect and cleave to the imperfect. Is it any wonder why the arguments and disagreements don’t stop?
John 15:1, 6-16 ‘This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
Philippians 4:1-9 …be of the same mind in the Lord.
Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32 Hear now, …Is my way unfair? Is it not your ways that are unfair? …get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live.
Psalm 51 Indeed, I was born guilty,
a sinner when my mother conceived me.
a sinner when my mother conceived me.
Lent: Day 2 – It’s tricky. We say that we are Christian. We say that we have faith. Yet, our actions don’t reflect what we say we believe and we blame our life as it is, or at least as we see it, for our lack of faith. We begin our day with the words “If only…” conjuring up the spirit of the world we know and live in, allowing it to take precedent over the world God promises. Yet, the goal is to press on in this life towards that life God promises, knowing that through Christ we will in fact get there. We want to be reconciled, but where is “there”? What does “there” look like? How does “there” feel? What will I be doing when I arrive “there”? Consider this: perhaps today, “there” is wherever you are because God is willing to meet you in that place. “There” looks like whatever you see around you because all the earth belongs to God. “There” feels like peace, which passes all understanding of where you are, or what it looks like, because fear, anger, frustration and discontent has served no purpose, and won no victories. Ultimately, the beauty and comfort is, knowing that when you arrive “there”, you will find yourself imitating the one in whom you say you truly believe, living and responding in the presence of God’s promise because it fulfills the right purpose and glorifies Christ’s victory over the world. Perhaps, soon you will realize that “there” isn’t really a physical place at all? I told you it’s tricky, but keep the faith. God knows all the tricks.
John 17:1-8 …And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
Philippians 3:12-21 …Not that I have already obtained this or have already reached the goal; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.
Habakkuk 3:1-0, 16-18
Though the fig tree does not blossom,
and no fruit is on the vines;
though the produce of the olive fails
and the fields yield no food;
though the flock is cut off from the fold
and there is no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will exult in the God of my salvation.
Trust in the Lord, and do good;
so you will live in the land, and enjoy security.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return (BCP 265). This is where it all begins and this is where it all ends. From the dust of the earth God created us and look at us now! Great and small, rich and poor, free and enslaved, we all occupy each of these phases throughout this journey called life, never really understanding the difference between the contrasts and never discerning their mystery. In reality, seeking this knowledge can occur at anytime in our life. However, the season of Lent within the Church is our official opportunity to understand and discern. When you see the ash upon the foreheads of those marked as Christ’s own, know that you are not alone.
Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
2 Corinthians 5:20b – 6:10 …we entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God …and see—we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything.
as far as the east is from the west,
so far he removes our transgressions from us.
For he knows how we were made;
he remembers that we are dust.
BCP – Book of Common Prayer – according to the use of Episcopal Church
Beginning February 29 – March 28, Wednesday’s Blog, follow Crustybread Lenten Meditation: See My Face, Hear My Voice.
Christ and his Church is really what it’s all about. Christ is the head and we are his body of believers. The relationship we have with one another should reflect the relationship Christ has with his Church. Within each other we should strive to see Christ. While at the same time, within one another we should strive to see a valued part of Christ’s body. We are both anointed to lead and redeemed to serve. No matter who we are, where we’ve come from, or where we believe our selves to be going, it doesn’t get much simpler than that. In honor of Shrove Tuesday, shrive one another and value our relationships, the way that Christ values us.
Philippians 3:1-11 …I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death…
Shrove – past tense of shrive
Shrive – To hear the confession of and give absolution to (a penitent). To obtain absolution for (oneself) by confessing and doing penance.
Is it possible that Peter’s denial of Christ was because he didn’t want to believe what was actually happening? This kind of denial is based in fear. We think denial protects us. We think denial will eventually make a situation go away. We even think that perhaps the situation is just an illusion or a keen diversion attempt by the enemy to keep us from believing in the true power of God. The fact is that if it were just an illusion there would be no need for the power of God. The works of the enemy such as fear are real, and we conquer fear by confronting it with our belief in the power of the Word of God. Even as newly transfigured followers of Christ, fear becomes a greater enemy. Previously, like Peter, when we journeyed this life with a veil, what was once used to protect us, now convicts us, because like Peter, it conflicts with what we now believe, as a result of being transformed by Christ. Peter’s multiple denials are not unfamiliar to our lives. More than once I myself have been there. Jesus knew that Peter would deny him (John 13:38). Jesus also knew that Peter would not always live in contrast with what he knew to be true within him self. He knows that about us too. We have only to be encouraged by his Word, and know that Christ is the faithful neighbor that we seek who always forgives and redeems us from all our troubles.
John 18:15-18, 25-27 …Peter again denied it, and at once a rooster crowed.
Philippians 2:1-13 ... work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Proverbs 27:1-6, 10-12 …Faithful are the wounds of a friend…
Psalm 9 …And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.