Posted in Uncategorized

Why Did Jesus Have to Die?

I made a video after my class the other day in response to what I learned at school. In class we were discussing the question of why Jesus had to die. Our professor has a Philosophy degree and is also gifted in Apologetics. He said that a question that atheists often ask is, “Why did Jesus have to die?” He said that atheists will also ask, “Why can’t God just forgive sin? Is God so angry and mean that He requires death for sin to be forgiven?” The discussion was a really good one because as Christians and as believers in Christ, we should be able to answer such questions. Our professor was encouraging us, in light of what we are learning about Jesus and the Father from the Gospels, to be able to answer such questions without using “church” terms that make no sense to a non-believer. Also, he was encouraging us to be able to answer such questions correctly! It seems as if we have simplified the gospel message so much that we have given false information! Please watch the video and let me know what you think. Also, if you have any questions, please ask and we will do our best to answer them. Thank you and God bless you!

Video: Why Did Jesus Have to Die?

 

Posted in Warnings

Addicted Marriages

I have seen people in relationships stay together because they have both become addicted to prescription medications (or illegal drugs, or alcohol, or the money they make together, or having an appearance of success, or having perfect kids, etc…) even though they are miserable. The drugs, alcohol, pressures of earning $, trying to keep up with making your kids turn out perfectly, or pressures of maintaining a false front cause them to become so weary that they cannot keep up with the demands required of them to continue giving more of themselves to the addiction AND the relationship.
The relationships die first. Their marriage and their children suffer the most. Then extended family, friends and their jobs suffer. They also are suffering physically, mentally and spiritually from the effects of the drugs, rat-race, etc… Then they become more and more unhealthy in their physical bodies. Finances crumble and escape them. Sometimes legal issues interrupt them, sometimes it is their health that gives them a scare…
And if they wake up then they are much more likely to turn it all around. But if not, then they end up killing relationships and themselves, slowly but surely…
The addiction never dies… And SIN is what this is called. We are all guilty of it in some form or fashion. But praise be to the Lord God who gave us the answer because truly, if we come to know Jesus, then we can be made new and change this destructive cycle of living!
SIN is just a name for destructive behavior. We like to get upset if what we are doing is called sin… But God had to give a name to what He knew was behavior that would not benefit us and He calls it SIN – which means “missing the mark” or “falling short of His glory” – God’s will for us is for us to prosper and be blessed to be a blessing to others. We are not going to prosper if we continue to choose to fall short of His glory by choosing to do things that He told us and we know will kill us, steal our joy and destroy our family.
Can we be saved and keep choosing to live these lives of lies? I cannot say if you are saved or not… But let us ask this question of ourselves and ask the Lord to give us the answer: Do I trust Jesus? If we say “Yes, but…..” Then we need to work out that but… There is no sin that He won’t forgive. There is no human that He will not forgive and come into their heart to live inside of them and to help them to love and be loved.

Jesus says: “Come to Me all of you who are weary and who are heavily burdened and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

Are you weary today? Do you want true rest? Jesus will give you rest because He carried ALL of our sin to the cross and nailed it there (Colossians 2:14). He has already paid the price for your soul. He already knew you when He died on the cross. You were chosen before the foundations of the earth were laid. He wants to come into your heart and give you rest.
Many couples stay together for the wrong reasons… if you claim to love and trust Jesus and you are married then surely you can stay together and work on your relationship for the right reasons. If you truly know Jesus, then you just need to press in to Him and listen to the Holy Spirit for guidance.

If you are one of these couples that has just run out of all hope because you are both addicted to something, especially alcohol or drugs, PLEASE ADMIT THAT YOU NEED SOME ASSISTANCE AND GET SOME HELP FROM A FAITH BASED DRUG & ALCOHOL ADDICTION PROGRAM, CELEBRATE RECOVERY GROUP, AA, NA, A DOCTOR, TELL SOMEONE THAT YOU TRUST, FIND HELP FROM SOME FACILITY OR PERSON THAT YOU FEEL COMFORTABLE GOING TO FOR HELP….. You cannot do it all on your own and Jesus never intended for any person to go it alone, even though He is with you. Jesus gave us one another to lean on and bear each other up. So do not think that you have to do this alone!! That is part of what is keeping this phenomenon going!! Shame and guilt! But if you want out of this destructive cycle then all you have to do is admit it and seek help. Only Jesus will get you set completely free of all of the chains that bind. And He came to save, not condemn (John 3:17).

AND IF YOU KNOW A COUPLE LIKE THIS AND IT IS NOT YOU: SHAME on YOU if all you do is discuss them with others and criticize their weaknesses!! Jesus weeps for us when we are lost like this. Do not make them feel like they have no where to go for help. A LOT of people in this situation stay there because they just do not know how to get out of it. The Bible tells us that the lost are stumbling around in the darkness because they are blinded. Who is going to share light with them? Are you? Or are you going to sit back and watch them and criticize them for their blindness or laugh at them for not being able to see like you? Pray for them. Pray for the sorrow that comes from God granting them mercy that leads to repentance. Pray for grace to abound in their life so that they come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. Just as we have been forgiven may they be forgiven as well. (Again, I am not saying that everyone in this situation is “lost” and doesn’t know Jesus at all… some are learning and just need help growing up in Jesus and maturing as believers. Are we really discipling others?)
**disclaimer** This post is NOT about any one couple or anyone in particular. I do know a lot of people that this could apply to where they have either been there, are there, or are headed there…. or were there, were coming out of it and now are struggling with it again… Take your pick but don’t even bother with trying to figure out “who is she talking about?” If the shoe fits, then wear it if you need to until you can get past this. And yes, we have been there so I am speaking from personal experience as well.**

Posted in Prayers and/or Scriptures, Updates, Warnings

Just Thinking

Just thinking… You know, the more that we pray according to God’s will, the more we may see the world around us seem to come apart or come at us…
I think that it is because we are not to be of this world anyways and sometimes things do need to change in order for us to be in God’s will… Some things that we think that we need are no where near as good as what God has in store for us.
God knows us best and He knows why He created us. If we are truly seeking God’s will and things are not going the way that we thought that they would, that is OK! Either He has something better in store or He is bettering us, our character or our situation.


Keep seeking His face and keep seeking His will and keep building His kingdom. While we are waiting to see our hopes fulfilled, let’s not get tired of doing good and seeking God because He is going to reward us. He is our Father. He loves us. He sees everything that is going on behind the scenes that we do not see or know. He is working it all out for our good. Trust Him and keep on fighting the good fight of faith!

*** UPDATE: We got some discouraging news today, but I am trusting God to work it all out. He knew that the news was in motion and on the way long before we even had a clue that it was coming. We have recently realized that there are still several areas that we both can grow and mature in. We had some wrong attitudes or perceptions that we were operating under in our finances. God gave us clarity and a way to make a change for the better. I am grateful!

I had to repent of being ungrateful and walking in doubt, still! I am just grateful that the Holy Spirit revealed some things to me about myself and I was able to remove some weight from my shoulders by surrendering in a couple of new areas to the Lord. He does take us from strength to strength, but it is through humility and surrender to Him that we are able to go from these strengths to new strengths. It sounds backwards that we surrender and recognize and admit our weaknesses in order to get stronger. But that is how when we are weak, He is strong. That is how we grow. We can not get past what we will not see or recognize or admit and not turn it over to Him and ask Him for forgiveness and help. That is all that it means to confess our wrongs, to ask for forgiveness and to repent. It just means that we admit that we made a mistake or had it wrong and that we want help from our Savior to turn things around. Guess what?! He will!!!

*added thought: Warning: we may see our government or religious institutions shaken because we seem to think that they have all of the answers. We tend to think here in our country that the government is supposed to be looking out for our best interest and that the government will fix anything that needs to be fixed. We have blindly trusted that if the government says that it is OK or needed, that it is OK or that we must need whatever they say that we need. When did we stop thinking for ourselves and when did we stop taking our thoughts captive unto Jesus Christ and hold them up to God’s Word, first? When did we start trusting in political parties and political agendas instead of God’s kingdom and God’s agenda? When did we start trusting in doctors’ opinions and scientific theories instead of God’s promises and walking by faith in Him? If you believe that we have been faithful to God as a nation then I say that you are under a great deception. If you live in this country and you say that you are a believer in Christ Jesus but you allowed mockers of His name and kingdom to be put into leadership positions by seeking your own comfort and leisure ahead of paying attention to what is going on here, then you need to repent. I can say this because I was guilty of this, too! I used to think that there were good people voting and running for office and that everything was going to be OK and that politics was something that I did not have to worry with. I took my right to vote for granted for many years. Now, I look at this great nation that God has blessed and I repent for my own complacency and greed and apathy. I repent because I am a part of the reason that we have come so far from the once great and blessed nation that we were. If we can complain about how things are now, then let us also ask ourselves if we are partly to blame and repent. BUT, do not give up or fear! Because as I say in this post: God knows everything and has already been working behind the scenes. He knows what He is doing and what is going on. He is also preparing future generations for what they will be facing and He is equipping us for what is to come. He may be doing some shaking to wake us up to turn things around before He does poor wrath on those who truly seek to do evil. If we do repent then He will definitely step in and turn it all around for our good. If we continue to refuse to acknowledge Him and seek Him, then He will allow us to face the consequences that we have created by allowing greed, lust, laziness, pride and all kinds of evil to rule in our lives.

Posted in Uncategorized, Updates

My Birthday 2016

Yesterday turned out to be one of my best, if not the best, birthdays that I’ve had. I know that the reason is all because of the LORD and His love. I do appreciate all the calls and messages on Facebook and the time spent with my family. I am so grateful for all of the little and big ways that those whom I love showed me that they love me.

None of the love shown to me on this birthday would have been possible nor would I have been able to receive it if it were not for the LORD. For one thing, I wouldn’t have believed that I deserve it or that anyone could love me. For another thing, I would have hidden from everyone because of the disbelief in their ability to love me because of how much I did not love myself. Today I understand that God is the One who authors love and puts people in our lives to encourage us and He is the Source of all of my life and all that sustains me – including my ability to love myself and my relationships with others. I thank God for where He has me today.

I realize that no matter what anyone else is doing, my eyes should be on the LORD and I should stand on His Word and His promises and His truth – about who I am and who they are. I should not be so upset with anyone if they are acting out and especially if I know they are a believer. I should pray for them and forgive and ask God to heal, convict, grant mercy towards repentance, lavish His grace into their situation and TRUST HIM to be their Father, Teacher, Healer, and Comforter – just as He is mine. (Romans 14:4) If He can do what He has done in me, then He can do it in them!! Praise God! Do I really get it now?

When I had the revelation to stop focusing on the acting out behavior (sins) and to instead focus on loving the person and leaving the rest to God – I felt like I was hearing to stop demonizing everything that is sinful. What I believe that means is that God is still in control anyway so do not allow the fact that a sin is taking place to now make you believe that the situation or the person is unreachable. No! God is bigger than our sin! As believers we rest in the fact that Jesus did pay the price for our sin and He has redeemed us. And we should know that we are not made perfect in our actions the day that we are saved. The day that we accept the FREE GIFT OF GRACE AND SALVATION is the day that we are transferred from the darkness into His kingdom of glorious light but we are not going to live a perfect life from that moment on. We are made perfect in His sight and Jesus perfects us. If we understand this for ourselves, then we need to understand it for others.

When a person is a believer and is still struggling with overcoming a bad habit or a sin and they stumble or fall, God’s Word promises that nothing can separate us from His love. Romans 8 covers the whole idea of struggling with sin and becoming more than a conqueror in Christ. The reason Romans 8 talks about there being no more condemnation in Christ and that nothing can separate us from God’s love is because God knows how our minds work and how guilt and shame work to keep us from being more than conquerors. God wants us to walk in the love He has for us and to share that same love with others. That is exactly why He sent Jesus Christ to give us the perfect example, to show us His love personified and to pay the price for ALL of our sins.

Philippians 2:12-13 tells us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling for it is God who works in us to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose. This tells us to be patient with ourselves and with one another because it is going to take some time to work out our salvation. Also, it tells us that God is the One who is working in us to get us where He wants us to be. We are not let off the hook. We are told to work out our salvation with fear and trembling. We need to stay surrendered to the leadership of Jesus, listen to the Holy Spirit and move when we are touched and obey His voice. The fear and trembling comes in as we are learning and we are not sure and we are constantly seeking to hear Him and to know Him and to do as He leads.

I am not saying that it is OK to keep sinning or that our struggle needs to continue over the same issues over and over again. No. But God is bigger than that obstacle, that bad habit that we are trying to give up, and that character defect that we do not want to have any longer. The sooner we surrender to Him, the more that we are in His presence and the more we learn of Him, the sooner we will overcome that which is trying to hinder us.

Also, when we or our loved ones are struggling, we need to remind each other that God is bigger and so is His love! And the enemy cannot overcome God! Whatever the enemy tries to use against us will not prosper! God can and will take what seemed meant for evil and He will turn it for good! So remember that and remind each other of that! Stand in that truth even when we see another person who is doing something that we know they may regret or that can turn out badly. And tell the enemy: “Devil, you may think you are winning here, but get behind me! I am surrendering to Jesus Christ and His authority and I plead the blood of Jesus over myself and put His spotless blood between us. You have no authority here! Go! In the name of Jesus I tell you to go and do not come back! I am redeemed! There is no weapon formed against me that will prosper! Your attacks and tactics will come to no gain for you or your evil purposes. God will take what you meant for evil and turn it for good.”

Proclaim that for your loved ones. Stop giving the enemy any room! Stop giving the enemy victories because we say, “Well the devil just keeps attacking him and he’s too weak or doesn’t want to choose the Lord.” Stand in the gap for your loved ones and even for the strangers and lost souls that you see on the street and pray for one another! The enemy of our souls only wins when we give up or give up on one another! Jesus never gives up on us. God never gives up on anyone! He moved heaven and earth for every human being on this planet! He wants no lost souls. We are all His children if we just believe!

At one time we were all enemies of God IN OUR OWN MINDS as shown by our evil actions. Colossians 1:21-22 “Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior.  But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation.”

That is definitely where I used to be! An enemy of God in my own mind, even though I had accepted Christ as my Savior as a child. When I got old enough to really understand what sin was and what a wretched sinner that I was, I had a hard time really believing that God could love me. I am so grateful that He has helped me to at least begin to grasp the depth of His love for me. 

God does not want us to be His enemies! He loves us and sent His Son to reconcile us to Himself. But because we did not understand or know about how great His love is for us, we thought we were His enemies and we acted like we were His enemies. We acted like we had to fend for ourselves and like it did not matter how we got the things that we wanted and needed for ourselves. Like orphan children with no one to trust, we acted out and lashed out. But now, now that we have such a great love shown to us, let us show that love to others and let us trust our Father in heaven.

~ Angela