Christianity is soooo beautifully simple AND practical!
If one were to just read the book of Matthew or John to see what Jesus said and did, or read one of Paul’s letters to the early church, Colossians, or Philippians, you’d see how…different Christianity is from other religions which are huge on either mystical, elusive, and abstract concepts and thoughts, or food-chain, climb-the-ladder type exaltation of participants, or severe bodily rejection and repetitious, ritualistic behaviors.
But not Biblical Christianity. Not the Christianity you find when you read the New Testament. The admonition and commands on how we ought to love one another and what that looks like practically are just so easy to grasp and refreshing and totally sensical and observable.
Indeed, it’s not like, dare I say, reincarnation, a mystical, never before observed idea. Even Christianity’s claims of resurrection from the dead has been observed time and again throughout history with people praying in Jesus’ name for life to return to someone who died and then it does.
So all this to say, I love the whole of Christianity, of what its Founder, Jesus, teaches. If there is anything more beautiful, more good for mankind, please, show me. It is for such teachings as these that I am totally unashamed to say I follow Jesus and His ways as recorded in the Bible:
“Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful. Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.” –Colossians 3:12-17 NLT
Don’t worry about what people may think if you proclaim to be a Christian. There’s nothing to be ashamed of. Our God is so good and wonderful. Get to know Him better so your confidence in that fact can be assured and you can more boldly share His love unabashedly with others. At the end of the day, it isn’t about whether or not someone likes you, it’s whether or not you loved Jesus and that person despite.
You go to church services on Sundays, maybe on a weekday as well–or more. You like the people there, you have some friends there, you like your pastor and the music so one day, you decide you should serve. So you do.
1.) When serving–or after the fact–do you find yourself wiped, frustrated, grumbling, or complaining about your experience?
2.) During and after the fact, you feel good, you enjoyed it, and can recall good experiences and can dare say you’re starting to–or already do–love it?
There’s usually two kinds of reactions to serving in your local church:
A) You feel used or frustrated, but you also feel obligated to serve because, well, it’s just what you should do, isn’t it?
B) You love the people in your church and find it a joy to help them out.
So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. 3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.-Philippians 2:1-8
Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. 17 Even if I am to be poured out as a drink offering upon the sacrificial offering of your faith, I am glad and rejoice with you all. 18 Likewise you also should be glad and rejoice with me.-Philippians 2:14-18
Ask yourself: Which kind of volunteer am I and why am I this way? I’d say this, if we aren’t the joyful one, doing it from love, we aren’t walking in love…And maybe that’s because we haven’t truly trusted in Christ and thus, we don’t really have His Holy Spirit living in our hearts, who makes us more loving and Christ-like. Or, we’ve allowed the devil’s lies, who is the author of division in the church, to creep in and embitter us, when once we really did love and enjoying serving, but overtime we started looking down on others or thinking they were taking advantage or not appreciative of what we do.
We as Christians aren’t perfect. It’s why Paul wrote that if anyone has an offense against another to forgive each other as God in Christ has forgiven us. Besides, we do it not because we deserve it, but because we love Jesus and He desires us to use the gifts He gave us to strengthen and serve and build up His church which ultimately is serving Him. If you really think someone is mistreating you, first pray about it. Ask God if this notion is true, or if it’s a lie from satan, or your own misunderstanding. Ask Him to make it known to you. And if afterwards, you still believe the person(s) are being mean or wrong, confront them about it–in a gentle manner. Share how you feel, don’t hold it in, or bring it up to a higher authority. Be honest in your confession of how you feel and what you see and experience. Sometimes it’s just perspective, or sometimes someone really is being out of line and needs correction.
Always remember the above passage, re-read it and really consider it. Jesus and a real love for Him and others should be what compels us to serve–nothing else. And if there is a different reason, we have to confess that our heart isn’t in the right place, and ask God, in Jesus’ name, to forgive us and help us get to that place, that we may shine as lights in this world.
I can’t say I know what every guy is attracted to in a woman. But I do know something you can work on beforehand that’ll make you more attractive to any guy.
If you’re super anxious, really insecure, have health issues that just consume you, that’s not only people repellant, but it’s unhealthy for you as well.
Now it is good to be self aware. It is good to know if you’re struggling with depression or are fearful or have ailments. It’s important to take care of yourself. But when it absorbs you, that’s when it’s destructive to yourself and your relationships.
For example: there’s a girl I met a few months ago. We exchanged numbers and ever since, it’s always been requests for help. I’ve helped her out from Christian love, but I realized that literally is our entire relationship: her needing/wanting help and talking about all her ailments. She didn’t know I was pregnant for a while until I offered her the information. She actually never asks me anything about myself–ever. She would know nothing about me if I never volunteered sharing. Her health issues have made her completely self-absorbed. And I see she has unknowingly pushed away family and loved ones. It’s really sad and I pity her, but what we have is a one-sided friendship.
And no guy wants to be in that kind of relationship where self pity on your end is the consummation of your conversations.
Relationships are mutual. You can begin self-reflecting and observing how you are with others by reading text message conversations, listening to yourself when you’re hanging out with your friends to see if it’s all about you, etc. If it is, seek to change that by learning more about God and what He has to say about life via the Bible, first the New Testament). It’s amazing how freeing His perspective is.
Now there’s also the opposite side of the spectrum: when you keep it all in and only listen to others, but never or rarely share. Again, relationships are mutual, so open up. Ask questions and answer them, too. I think shyness isn’t entirely who someone is, but more so, it’s someone who’s afraid to share who they are for whatever reason. Typically, it’s what the Bible calls, “the fear of man.”
You fear what people are going to think of you. Or you’re not sure if you can trust them. Whatever the case, don’t let shyness be a roadblock in your relationships. Yes, it’s something that takes effort to overcome, but it all comes back to getting to know God and His love. Once you begin understanding how deeply you’re loved by God, you’ll grow less and less afraid of getting hurt or rejected by others, and your relationships will flourish.
Feel free to leave a comment if this resonated with you.
And so what happens when you speak first and read the Bible second; God is like, actually, you need to do this instead:
Anyone who rebukes a mocker will get an insult in return.
Anyone who corrects the wicked will get hurt.
So don’t bother correcting mockers;
they will only hate you.
But correct the wise,
and they will love you.
Instruct the wise,
and they will be even wiser.
Teach the righteous,
and they will learn even more.-Proverbs 9:7-9
And so that is my biblical/God-given wisdom to share with you today. Though sometimes your mind is in disbelief, you know the truth, and just wanna shake some people and be like, “Snap out of it! You’re destroying yourself!” God would rather you spend that time and effort correcting the wise and those who actually want to follow Him instead. For to whom much is given, even more will be added to them. If you seek to understand God and obey His commands, He makes you all the wiser.
Just because someone is inspiring, does not mean God is the one behind the inspiration.
Someone may inspire you, but inspiring you to do or be what?
There’s many inspirational speakers; some are New Age, some are Christian, some are Buddhist, and some are Atheist.
As born-again followers of Christ, we should not seek to merely inspire, but rather, to transform and equip by the power of the Holy Spirit. I can inspire someone to do or say something, yet it wasn’t Christ in me doing the inspiring, but myself.
We must be very careful what we are inspiring others to do. You can “be positive” and encourage a non-believer to go after his dreams, but what if those dreams are shallow, or used to promote and advance immoral messages that cause many to sin?
What we want to do instead is first be filled with the Holy Spirit so we ourselves are inspired and empowered by Him to direct people in the right direction: toward Christ. But how do we get filled with His power?
First, we must surrender.
If there is anything we have yet to repent of, we deal with that first. We stop ignoring, we stop justifying, we stop quenching the Holy Spirit and put that sin to death like the bible commands. That could mean completely cutting off a relationship, stopping your pursuit of riches, or no longer flirting (remember how high God’s standards are: let there not be a hint of sexual immorality among you; Ephesians 5:3-5).
Once our sin(s) are repented of, we diligently seek Christ.
For the eyes of God roam throughout the earth to show Himself strong for those whose hearts are completely His. You have been foolish in this matter. Therefore, you will have wars from now on.” (2 Chronicles 16:9 HCSB)
“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus said to him, “ ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.” (Matthew 22:36-38 NKJV)
The Father sent His only begotten Son to earth for thirty-three years and He was brutally beaten and crucified for you. He died for you. He gave everything for you. Do you think He will be satisfied with a portion of your heart and a religious routine? Jesus wants completely devoted followers. It’s all or nothing. You either understand and agree that He is totally worthy of your full love and dedication for all that He did for you while you were still sinning against Him, or you don’t agree with that and continue on your own path that will inevitably lead to death and destruction. There is no middle-ground. Jesus told the Laodicean church in Revelation that because they were lukewarm for Him, and not cold or hot, He was going to vomit them from His mouth. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be vomited from Christ’s mouth. I want to be embraced by Him, always enraptured by His love.
If you do these two things: repent and really seek to know and love Christ, you will be led and empowered by Him and will be able—by His Spirit—to inspire others to draw closer to Him.
Outside of Jesus, there is no perfect love, no one who can complete you. That nagging feeling and knowledge of lack can never be fulfilled by another lacking, broken, imperfect, sinful human being.
The lack is too great. It goes beyond the physical. It’s spiritual. It’s eternal.
The saying “there’s a God-shaped hole in all of us,” is true. And you can’t fill a hole that big with another finite person like you.
Thankfully–incredibly–God WANTS to fill that hole. And He proved how much so when He sent His Son to die for us. Talk about doing everything for the person you love. Has someone died for you? Has a perfect, sinless person you didn’t even know give up his life for you?
There’s no outdoing Jesus in the love department. No human is perfect. But He is fully divine and able to ABUNDANTLY fill that spiritual hole inside of you.
And best of all, He’s able to save you from yourself and from Satan. Eternity is real and these beings are real and there has to be a separate dwelling place for these two eternal persons who are at war; they can’t share the same abode, hence the reason Satan was thrown out of heaven along with a third of God’s angels who followed his rebellion.
Hell is a real location, just like heaven is. And there are–just like the angels–people who choose to follow Jesus and those who–even unwittingly–choose not to and thus default to the other side.
I pray Jesus reveals Himself to you, exposes the truth of who and all that He is for your good and for your salvation. We all need to be saved from ourselves and the spiritual enemies that are stronger than us. Only Jesus is mighty enough to accomplish both.
Grace to you.