Saturday, March 26, 2016
Jesus death on the cross was not the end, my friend! So many don't understand why this happened, or what the big deal is. Some think Jesus was a nice guy, but God's son? No way! Some believe He was a prophet! The Bible lays out the sin of man and the destruction it causes. Over centuries man is inhabited with traits that lead to anger, hate, greed, murder, dishonesty, and sexual sins.
The good news is that The Bible also lays out God's plan from Genesis to Revelation in order to save man from that sin nature. God allowed us free choice from the beginning, but He also sees all, and knows what,we will choose on our own. He hates sin, all sin! He does not pick and choose, it is all equal in His site. He can not abide sin.
His plan was to have His son born on earth by a virgin. You know the story of Christmas. It was not an accident that Jesus was born in Bethlahem in a stable. It was planned. Jesus was born humbly in the lowliest of circumstances for a reason. The shepherds who were the first to see Him, were considered the lowest in the chain of jobs at the time. It was planned. By Jesus, the King born humbly, He was on our level. He was not a mighty warrior, not anything but a humble servant.
During His ministry, Jesus encountered all walks of life, from the religious leaders, to kings, to the outcasts, the disabled, and the morally bankrupt. He treated them all with love. It was God's plan that people know and feel that love. Through that love, Jesus healed the physical pains, the moral pains, and the spiritual pains. He did not play favorites. He loved everyone right where they were.
Many think the Romans killed Him. Some blame the Jews, others think nailing Him to a cross killed Him. No! He was God, He could have stopped it at any time. He did not have to suffer all the pain and humiliation, and loss of blood. He even prayed to be relieved if it was His Father's will. Yet He clearly knew this had the to
He paid the price for your sin! God sees you as clean through that blood. What can you do to get this gift? Nothing! It is free! God loves you even deep in your sin, but He offered you the gift of His son's death, and His son's blood to save you from eternal damnation. God's grace is waiting for all who accept it.
Maybe you have never accepted that gift. You have been hurt by the Church. Maybe you see following Christ as having to give up all your fun. Maybe you feel unworthy, so you do nothing. Satan is very good at deceiving and twisting your beliefs and feelings. After all, he is the one who deceived the first man and woman. Why wouldn't he do the same to you?
Satan will keep you in a fog as long as he can. He knows he can't defeat God, but he will try to distract you. If you don't know Jesus personally, you can accept Him today as your Savior. Accept that He is God's son. Admit He died for your sin, ask for forgiveness, and ask Him to come into your heart to live in you, and guide you! The sin He forgives is past, present, and future. Yes, you will still sin, but now you have Jesus to lead you, instruct you, and lead you into His ways. He loves you so much.
Do you know that if, if, you had been the only person on earth, He would have died for you! Think about it. This gift of eternity in Heaven will cost you nothing, but it cost Him everything! Because Jesus died on Good Friday, we have life! It is Friday....but Sunday is coming!
Saturday, March 12, 2016
Carolyn McBreen Gibbs Blog: Heaven....Forever Home: Do you believe in Heaven? I do! One day when I take my last breath in this world, I will take my first breath in Heaven. It is a goal worth ...
Do you believe in Heaven? I do! One day when I take my last breath in this world, I will take my first breath in Heaven. It is a goal worth pursuing. We have God's own words that describe heaven. In Revelation He tells us about this future home of ours. For the first third of my life, it was a mystical place. It was a lofty dream that someone as imperfect as me could never attain.
Heaven is ideal. There are streets of pure gold. Gates with pearls and precious gems. There will be no more pain, no suffering, no tears. We will be in constant praise of our Savior, and I can only imagine how beautiful it will be. If God gave us beauty in this world of flowers, sunsets, trees, streams, don't you think His heaven will be even more beautiful?
That hope is a part of who we are as believers. How do we know without a doubt we have that hope of a future eternity? If we have believed Jesus is God's son, if we confess our sins to Him, and if we repent, turn from those sins, and if we ask Jesus to come into our hearts to rule, then we are born in the Spirit, and we become a child of God. Jesus is the only way to eternal life in heaven. If we do all that, and develop a personal relationship with Christ, we are assured we will live in heaven when we leave earth.
That promise becomes our new life. Knowing Heaven is real, knowing it will be our home, colors everything else we do in this life. When we lose a loved one, who is also saved, we grieve their absence but we have peace in knowing we will see them again one day. Our handling pain and tragedies are different, because we know this will pass. We have a new joy, a new outlook, and a peace in our lives that cannot be explained.
Most of all, as the world gets scarier, and evil abounds, seemingly uncontrolled, I am not afraid. I know that God will get me through whatever comes along. Because I know where I will be when I leave here, I can handle anything this world holds. The same God who gave His son to die for me, is in control of this world. Before I was a born again believer, I feared everything, ultimately because I feared death. Now I know that even the worst that could happen, losing my life, is actually gain. When Jesus calls me home, I will step into His arms, forever! That is the ultimate prize!
Saturday, March 5, 2016
Water soothes my spirit. Not drinking water, but being on or around water. My earliest memories of water was when I lived in Colorado as a child. Many drives through the mountains were along one of the many mountain streams or rivers. They always looked so cool, and bubbly and refreshing. My Dad sometimes took me along when he fished in those streams. Those were happy times.
As a teen in Iowa, we spent part of our summer at Lake Okoboji in Iowa. We boated, swam, and played on and in the water. Daddy loved boating, Mother did not. So I got to go with him every time! It didn't matter if it was a motor boat, or a row boat, it was fun. There is a feeling of peace, and being close to God when I am on the water! Perhaps that is built in, after all, Jesus started His ministry by the water. Some of His disciples were fishermen, and Jesus often went out in a boat.
Even sitting by water is one of my favorite places to be. Looking out over the water, is quiet, and trees along the shore are reflected in the gentle ripples. For me it is a place where my spirit is free of stress, free to just be a relaxed, and introverted me. I could sit and reflect on life, God, and my place in the world, all while sitting beside a lake.
I find it interesting that God gave me a water loving, Navy man as my husband. We have enjoyed swimming, fishing, and boating together. Our greatest adventure on water was when we went to Hawaii. On a cruise out to Pearl Harbor, we were two of the few who were not sea sick. It amazed me that so many do not enjoy the gentle rolling of a boat. My husband went up to where the boat was being guided through the water, and got permission as a former Navy man, to steer the boat.
Some years ago we were blessed to go on a Christian Cruise. That was a dream come true. A big ship, on the water for five days, totally surrounded by water! We stayed on the decks as often as we could, not wanting to waste a moment of the experience! On deck, the water experience was magnified greatly! Standing by the railing watching the ship cut through the water was mesmerizing! I could stare at the exspance of water meeting horizon for hours! It was so quieting and relaxing.
It is not surprising that God created this exspance for our pleasure. There are no accidents in creation, no Big Bang. God knew exactly what He wanted our world to be. He intentionally put our world, including water together in perfect fashion. I still love being by water. Now when my husband goes fishing, I love