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Saturday, June 25, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Are You Covetous or Contented?


Hebrews 13:5, 14 "Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. (14) For we have here no continuing city, but we seek one to come."

I was thinking today about the lives of those who do not know Christ. As I grew up in a Christian home, and got saved at age 10, I didn't ever have too much exposure to the darker side of the world. (A fact which I thank my parents sincerely for.) But as a Christian, my entire life goals, desires, and dreams have changed so drastically from what they would be if I didn't know The Lord! As a Christian, we have only One Person to try to please. As we follow God step by step, day by day, the other areas of our lives will fall into place if we are in His perfect will. We don't have to try to impress people, or gain a great name for ourselves...our very identity is wholly in Christ, whom we serve. 

As a non-Christian, what would you have to live for or strive after? Fame? Wealth? Extreme popularity or beauty? Or the biggest one, relationships and "love"? If you did not have a knowledge that this life is meant to be lived for God, what would you do with it? For me, I can see myself being drawn by fame. I love to play the piano and sing, and if I did not have the worldview I do, I would probably be going for my "moment in the spotlight". I'm just being honest. But as a Child of The King, I don't need the spotlight. Why? Because this world is not my home. And the only One I need approval from is The One who holds my life in His hands. I don't find fulfillment in the applause of man, or in gaining wealth. I also don't need to be in a relationship to be fulfilled. If and when God brings that into my life, great. But until then, I shouldn't be moping around moaning and groaning! ;) I have a life to life for Christ!

This being said, I'm not saying it's wrong to have money. I believe that the more you have, the more responsibility you have before God to use it for His glory. I've never been in a position of wealth, but I pray that if I was, I would strive to be a good steward of it. It's the same with fame! It's not wicked to have it--if you're not getting it from the wrong places, with the wrong motives, and for all the wrong reasons. And again, if you have a position of influence, use it! You have opportunities that perhaps no one else has to serve The Lord! And if you are in a Godly relationship, praise God...let your love be a shining example of Christ's love for His Bride. :)

For those of us without many of these things, we must understand that our lives are not meant to be lived in pursuit of happiness from the things of this world. We were put here to glorify God, and to lead others to Him. Our fulfillment and identity are to be found in serving The One who set us free! Let's stop living like this life is all we have, and start doing what we are able to for God. Whether that be large or small, we owe it to Him; along with so much more. He will never leave us nor forsake us...Christ is all we need! 
Mykaela

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Leaping Walls



2 Samuel 22:30 "For by thee I have run through a troop: by my God have I leaped over a wall."

Walls. They can be really good, or really bad. If there is a city or home under attack, strong walls are essential for protection and refuge for those inside. But if there are two people who should be together, and a wall separates them, (whether literally or figuratively), the wall is a curse, not a blessing. Today I want to talk about the different walls that we sometimes face. 

One example is family members who do not share your faith. Are there some walls there? Ohhh, yes. When you don't share the common bond of Jesus Christ and a personal relationship with Him, the gap between you will just continue to grow as the years go by! (I speak from very real personal experience.) What about an offense that has come between you and another brother or sister in Christ? If not taken care of, that wall can become higher and thicker, until reconciliation is a thousand times more difficult that it should have been. Sometimes, people build walls inside to protect themselves from being hurt by other people. 

In each of these situations, there is sin involved. Reconciliation should be sought after quickly when walls come between people, and you cannot love without being hurt. It's just a fact of this life. Did Jesus forbear to love Judas Iscariot even knowing He would be betrayed by him? No! He still put forth the effort and time involved to invest in Judas' life and show him God's love...even though he didn't deserve it. 

In this verse in 2 Samuel, it says that "by my God have I leaped over a wall". When we come to a wall in our lives, what do we do? Do we run at it with all our puny strength, trying to smash through it by ourselves? Do we just ignore it, pretending it doesn't exist, (and thereby making it worse)? Well, according to God's Word, it's through HIS strength that we can get past these walls! Only in Christ can we reach a lost family member, or find courage to forgive someone who has wronged us, or love someone unconditionally even though they might tear us apart later! If you are facing walls that look way too high and thick to push past, remember the city of Jericho in the Old Testament. Through the power of Almighty God, those walls crumbled away like nothing before the Israelites. Turn to God in prayer, asking Him for help...He is not going to let you down!! By our God, we CAN get through these barriers that threaten to overwhelm us. "I will go in the strength of the Lord GOD..." Psalm 71:16a

I hope each one of you has an amazing week. Be strong in The Lord, and in the power of His might! :)
Mykaela

Fun Post: June Favorites



Initial disclaimer: This post is inspired by the lovely Kimberly, who was in turn inspired by Miss Rebekah Joy. Gotta love "plagiarizing" ideas from other bloggers. ;)

So this month, I've been doing lots of stuff, and just thought you all might like an update of sorts. :) I've been:
Reading...
A Voice in The Wind and The Atonement Child by Francine Rivers. Both incredible books that have made me laugh and cry, and ultimately have challenged me on several issues. I can't 100% recommend everything she says in them as far as doctrine, etc., but they are overall really incredible books!

Listening To...
This one Lexi Walker song. So pretty. My two absolute favorite artists, the Pettits and the Galkins. In particular, my favorite song, (Yes I just said that. My favorite song ever. I was actually able to pick one.) It's called I'll Never Forsake You, and it has helped me through so many difficult times, or even just times when I'm incredibly happy and want to praise The Lord! SO. AMAZING.

Working On...
Helping get my studio apartment in the basement fixed up. Especially the bathroom...it looks like a whole new room!! My dad is incredible at doing anything and everything remodeling, and my mom is a determined worker and loves making things beautiful! <3 

Wearing...
A lot of maxi skirts. I've been getting into the graphic tee + maxi pairing, and really enjoying wearing the couple of outfits I have that fit that description. ;P

Going...
Over the mountains to Oak Harbor (where my home church is), for the graduation of some good friends. Congratulations to them as they start new adventures!! I had so much fun over there with everyone. :)

Playing...
"Give me Jesus" and "Bow the Knee". Some of my favorite songs to play on piano and sing. :)

Writing...
A new song entitled "Matchless Redemption". I was going for a strong salvation message in this one, so the verses kind of talk about my personal salvation experience, and the chorus talks about the glorious redemption we have through Jesus Christ.

Looking Forward to...
Going to see Kimberly in August!!! Super thrilled that I have this opportunity. I'm hopefully going to be crossing off several bucket list items while with her, so it should be a pretty interesting 10 days! ;P One of those items is going on a big roller coaster. My hands are already slightly sweaty. XD

Wishing For...
A way that I could get into rock climbing/bouldering without so much time, expense, and difficulty reconciling modesty standards and harnessing equipment. :( Oh, well. I'll live. ;)

Celebrating...
My little brother Kayson's 8th birthday!? I cannot believe that he is already 8....:O Crazy!! Also celebrated the one year anniversary of Blessed Hope Baptist Outreach this last month. Praise The Lord!

Baking/Cooking...
Broccoli Cheddar soup and Chicken Spinach alfredo. YUM.

Nibbling...
Starbursts; why I've been so into them lately, I do not know. I refuse to buy them anymore because I will eat all of them in one to two sittings. Ach!! :P

Drinking...
The coffee to beat all other coffees to tiny, itty bitty smithereens: *drum roll* BLUE STAR!! I've finally found a place in Wenatchee that sells it!! I was soooo thrilled when I saw that sign in the market. You guys will never understand how much I adore Blue Star coffee. 16 oz. triple shot hot breve with brown sugar. Sometimes a quad shot if I'm feeling wild. ;D

Planning on...
Starting to play piano at the public market I mentioned in the last point!! It's a really cool indoor farmer's market type thing, located in what used to be an old steel mill. There is a grand piano that you can put your name on a signup to play, and though you can't "solicit" tips, you're allowed to have a tip jar. ;) We'll see how that goes. I love the market, and it's not as much stress as actually performing...if people don't like my music, they are welcome to walk on by, lol! :D

Well, there ya have it! Hope I didn't bore you guys too much here. What have you been enjoying this month??
Mykaela
P.S. Just realized I have a rather large amount of links in this post, and I mentioned a couple of brand names. I have no sponsors or affiliates, and I do not own any rights. There we go. :P

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sunday Snippets: An Open Letter to my Generation



Proverbs 30:12 "There is a generation that are pure in their own eyes, and yet is not washed from their filthiness."
A few months back, I wrote a post in letter form, addressed to those embarking on a missions trip. It was well received, and I enjoyed writing it, so today is going to be another letter. This one is a bit more sober, but I feel so, so strongly about it, and believe it needs to be said. This is an open letter to those of my generation that have turned 18 and leaped with abandon off of the deep end, so to speak. Or just lived at home in total rebellion if they aren't old enough to truly leave yet. You know who you are. So here goes. 

Dear Christian young person of my generation,
I had the opportunity to see you again recently. You have long since walked away from church and your family for the most part as well, but since there was a big event at church, you darkened the doors again, enduring the message and staying just long enough to eat afterwards. I heard almost a year ago about your decision to quit church, abandon your dreams of serving The Lord with your life, and start living only for yourself. You were one of dozens that I had received the same news of in the last couple years. Though it's happened a lot, it never hurts any less. There is same sickening sinking feeling knowing that yet another has fallen into Satan's trap of selfishness and pride.

As I watched you from across the room, I thought of the times I used to talk with you as a sister in Christ, discussing plans of how we could best serve in our respective ministries, or when I went on the same missions trip as you. We stood side by side in a far off land, giving what small blessings we could to those people, but receiving so much more from them. I remember talking about how good the message at camp was, and how we needed to apply it to our lives. I remembered playing games during fellowship time, laughing and singing with the group. As all these things ran through my head, it hit me hard how different things were now. Instead of discussing how best we could serve, we didn't even really talk. What do we have in common now? Instead of trying to bless others together, I now watched as you showed up with worldly clothing and no desire to come back until maybe the next big event at church. But possibly not even then, I mean...you're too cool for church now, I guess. You've become part of the majority. You've become a statistic at the top of an article: "How many young people leave the church after they graduate". You've become a vessel that is not willing or fit for The Master's use.

What I say to you now I say with every fiber of sincerity and love in me. Wake. Up. Please. You may not realize this, which is why I'm telling you: YOUR ACTIONS DO NOT EVER ONLY AFFECT YOU. Every single member of this body of Christ suffers without you here. You are missed at every church service, every outreach or door-knocking time, every single thing that happens, your absence leaves a hole. And when other young people look at you, and follow in your footsteps?? Guess what? An even bigger hole appears. And it grows and grows continually. 

I care deeply about you, as your friend and as your sister in Christ. There are many, many people who are weeping and praying for your return to the truth. I can promise you that when you walked out, it was a dark day for your parents, your true friends, your pastor, and your church. Every single one of us wants God's best for you! When you turned your back on His will for your life, you got out of the safety of His path. Every other way you follow will be rough and weary without His hand of blessing. I say none of this to be unkind, or to disrespect you. I am one of many who are sick and tired of watching Satan win. Of seeing our generation fall to ruins and stop being beacons to the world, but instead, opportunities for the world to mock true Christianity. Don't you think there are enough young people falling away, without you joining their ranks?! If you are going to truly serve God, you will be a minority. You will face difficulties. And you will be persecuted. But through Him, you can change the world. Standing alongside your brothers and sisters who chose the minority, you can help bring the lost world to Christ. That is the only worthy goal in this life. If you aren't following that goal, you are in the wrong place.

I exhort you to look around you and determine if you really want to continue on the path you're following. If you are in church, striving to follow God's will for your life, and honoring Him, then Amen!! You are part of the mighty few who will change the world for Christ. But if not, then I and every other true Christian beg, and plead with you to return to The Lord, for He will have mercy on you, and will abundantly pardon. (Isaiah 55:7) It's NEVER too late to start serving your Creator once more!! Love in Christ,
Mykaela

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

I Once was Lost...

My Personal Testimony

Today I'd like to tell the story of how I came to know The Lord. Some of you may have read my story in tract form (I hand it out regularly), but there is more to it than what I could feasibly put into a tri-fold 8.5x11. ;) 

I have been in a strong Christian home since I was born. I have heard The Bible preached, taught and sang since I was old enough to understand anything. Christianity has been ingrained into my very being for as long as I can remember! I am so thankful for this early teaching, and for the way my parents raised me. However, being a pastor's daughter and all, I put on a show for a long time. I looked like a really good kid on the outside...I mean, that's what I'm supposed to be, right? A model child! :) I was so, so far from truly being "good" on the inside, though. As a child, I made several false professions of faith, usually just so I would have something to say when someone asked the question, "So how did you get saved?". I knew deep down that it wasn't real. 

In fall of 2006, my family and I went to a tent meeting, where a very fiery preacher preached a message about Hell. Oh my GOODNESS... I was terrified out of my mind that night. I almost let go of my pride and talked to my mom, (who I later found out had been praying hard for me through that message). At the last possible second, I changed my mind and pushed away my conviction. For the next 6 months, I had the most horrible time of my entire life up to that point. I would stay up until 2 or 3 in the morning, terrified that I would die in the night and wake up in hell. I KNEW that I was not saved, yet I just would not take care of it!

During this time, a church member who I greatly looked up to passed away in his sleep. No apparent reason, he just didn't wake up one morning. I knew that he was in heaven, but that event certainly did not help my peace of mind!! I was having horrible nightmares, I was depressed and fearful, and as a result, my school grades were failing. I began to cheat nearly every day, and of course that led to lying in order to cover it up. I was under SO much conviction during this time!

Things were getting about as bad as they could be, until one day, (March 14, 2007 to be exact ;), my parents stayed up late checking my school over. Up to this point, they had trusted me with grading my own work for the most part. That night, they found out about the complete hole I had dug myself into. At around 1 in the morning, they woke me up and confronted me about my sin. I don't remember our entire conversation, but finally, for the first time, I saw it for what it was: I was sinning against a holy, righteous God! He had laid out a law in His Word, (The 10 Commandments), and I had broken every single one of them. James 2:10 says, "For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all." I had lied, stolen, dishonored my parents and God, and that sin was exactly what I was on my way to hell for. I had heard the salvation story a thousand times: We broke God's law, Jesus Christ came to earth to 'pay our fine' so to speak. The wages of sin is death, so to pay for our sin, Jesus had to die! All that He was asking me to do was turn away from my sin and towards Him in faith, believing that he could and would save me! That night, I finally let go of my pathetic excuses, my pride, and stubbornness, and asked God to save my soul. And you know what? ALL of that time that I spent fighting was completely useless. Somehow I thought that giving myself to God would be incredibly difficult. And it was--it was both the hardest and the easiest decision I have ever made in my life. There are not words in any language bright or beautiful enough to describe the glory of a lost sheep coming at last into The Good Shepherd's fold. The Bible says that there is rejoicing in heaven at such a time. What rejoicing that must be! Thousands of thousands of angels praising God together has got to be pretty spectacular! 

Ever since that day in 2007, my life has been irrevocably changed. My focus, desires, and interests have all been heavily influenced by my faith in Jesus Christ. The faith that had been my parents' finally became my own. Christianity is the only faith that you cannot be born into...every person must make the decision of their own accord. If you are reading this, and have never turned to Christ for salvation, I beg you to seriously consider your soul. We are never guaranteed tomorrow! Your eternal destiny is way, way too important to mess around with. You need to KNOW where you will be when you walk out of this life. And you can! 1 John 5:13 "These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God." Please think carefully about this; you may not have another chance. I can promise you with everything in me: you will never, ever regret it. Thank you for bearing with a long post today...this is truly the most important thing in my life, so I don't think it's something to be cut down! :) I am SO thankful for what God has done for me!!! I hope my story is a blessing to you as well. 
Mykaela

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Just Zip It!



Proverbs 17:28 "Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and he that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding."

I was quoting this verse to myself today, when someone said something very ungracious to me. Sometimes it is one of the hardest things in the world to bite back a harsh or sarcastic response! But according to this passage, when someone simply shuts their mouth, (even a fool!), they are thought of as a wise person. Isn't that interesting? The Bible has so much to say about our speech; we need to be edifying to our fellow Christians, glorifying to God, and a testimony to the world around us with our words. However, there are definitely times when it is the wisest choice just to stop. Stop talking, and let God work in the situation instead of us.

What are some examples of when it's good to "zip it"? What about if you accidentally hear something that was not meant for your ears, or perhaps something very wrong? Don't repeat it! Or when gossip is spreading fast? Break the chain! What if your sibling or friend got into trouble of some kind, and just decided to vent their frustration on you with harsh, unkind words? That would be a time to be still, or to lift them up with your words if you do speak.

There are countless times every single day when we simply start to spout words, sometimes without even thinking a TINY BIT beforehand! Even if the conversation isn't wrong per se, how many times is it simply unnecessary, idle talk? Matthew 12:36 says, "But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment." That is incredibly sobering. I know for me personally, I say so. many. things. that are totally "idle"--worthless, unnecessary words. 

I want to think about simply speaking less this week. When I do speak, I want my words to mean something, to be thought through and honoring to God. Let's all work on thinking more and talking less! :) Have a lovely week!
Mykaela

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Boredom is Illegal!

Guest post by Kimberly Snyder

Happy Wednesday, everyone! Today I am excited to present a guest post from a dear friend of mine, Kimberly. She is from Oklahoma (where the wind comes sweeping down the plain...;) Anyway, I am SUPER excited, because I get to go and visit her in August!!! We are counting down the days. In gumballs, no less. ;) I hope you enjoy her post; I found it very thought provoking. 


--------------------------

Boredom?! No!!

We must keep moving forward!!

When I have nothing else to do, Pinterest is my go-to. It's safe to say that my account has known love. But what about you? What's that thing you do when you've got plenty of free time on your hands?

Isn't just so easy and tempting to sit around twiddling your thumbs, browsing Pinterest for hours (or whatever it is that you do) claiming that you're out of tasks and now "bored".

Psshh.

You just haven't considered the tasks that you have been given that cannot be completed. That's right. There are some things commanded of us that are actually impossible to finish. So... the "bored" excuse has no validity. Ever.

Here are some ideas. Straight from my trusty KJV.

1. GO (ye into all the world)
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. (Mark 16:15)

If you're in a "gap year", "trying to figure out your next move", or just not sure what you want to do with your life, have you considered the Great Commission? (Which, by the way, is a command, not a suggestion.)

What I'm really saying, at the heart of my words, is that if Jesus is in your heart, serving Him should be the chief desire of your life. Not worrying about what you want to do with your life.

And, lucky you, some of the ways to make Him happiest are laid out in black and white.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, it would probably be a good idea to invest in a good Bible.

2. BE (the salt and the light)

Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. [14] Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. [15] Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. [16] Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. (Matthew 5:13-16)

Whatever corner of the earth God has called you to be in during this season of your life is your platform. At home, serving your family, and living out the Great Commission in St. Lois, Missouri, or abroad teaching the orphans in Ghana. Either; or; any path in between. The platform you're on is the stage set for you to be the salt and light.

Just some interesting notes on 'salt' and 'light' that I've picked up over my many years of preaching-attending...

- Salt is seasoning
- Salt is also preserver
- Salt doesn't do much good in the shaker, however
- People don't really appreciate it when you reach over a salt their food for them. Be the salt. Be the bright and shining salt. And when people see your benefits, they'll pick you up.
- "You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink", indeed, but if you give it a little bit of salt on the walk down, he'll be good a thirsty for that water once you reach it.
- Light is most notable when it's shining in an otherwise very dark place
- Darkness isn't anything in and of itself; darkness is only the absence of light


Hint: A lot of times 'salt' and 'light' work is confused as being hard, big, revolutionary tasks and services. But, most of the time, it's just doing the normal, run-of-the-mill, everyday, mundane work... but with a better attitude. A countenance that exuberates joy and contentedness. A light that points everyone around to Jesus.

3. LOVE (one another, as Christ loved us)

This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
(John 15:12)

Can you imagine that? Loving a wicked, vile nasty sinner (a murderer! a thief! a child molester!) enough to die and go to hell so they might have a chance at spending eternity in heaven?!

I mean, there's not even a guarantee there! It's not like all of the human race is going to heaven because of this. You're just giving them a chance to repent and be saved.

While I can imagine it (I've read my Bible a time or two), I cannot, personally, imagine mustering enough love up within myself towards an wretched, heathen stranger to die for them. Only for the chance that they might spend eternity at Jesus' feet. I just can't imagine that. Even though I once was the same.

That might make me a really heartless person. And I'm sorry. I do love you. Just not quite like Jesus did. That's my goal, though. The goal I'll never achieve. But something to work towards, nonetheless.

I try to remember, on this subject, that love is an action. Jesus did the ultimate action of proving that He loved us in that He was humbled to the state of a man, born of a woman, raised under human parents, worked in a carpentry shop, lived, died, and rose again from the dead on the third day.

What can I do to sacrifice myself, my own wants, my own desires, for those around me, family or no, friend or foe?

4. ASK (and it shall be given you)

And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: [15] And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him. (1 John 5:14-15) (See also Matthew 7:7)

Ask for something to do. Go to God. Tell Him you're bored. He has work for you.

5. SEEK (and ye shall find)

...seek, and ye shall find... (Matthew 7:7b)

If you're really trying to find a way to help, or sacrifice self for someone else, you'll find it. You just will. There are too many hurting people out there for you to be actually without place to help. Just gotta seek.

6. Knock (and it shall be opened unto you)

...knock, and it shall be opened unto you: (Matthew 7:7c)

If you have a burden for a certain people, why is it impossible that God could have those people for you to serve and be a living example of Christ to? I see this too often in Christians that want to be involved in the fight against abortion, but don't know where to begin, and really are only interested in holding signs, and not in leading the event, or organizing the sign-holders.

Knock on that door.

7. PRAY (without ceasing)

Pray without ceasing. (1 Thessalonians 5:17)

Wow. That's another one I can't really imagine for myself. It's actually a conscious decision to pray. Even driving down the road, I have to think to myself, "I'm alone with God, I should pray." Am I the only one?

Without ceasing, though? Wow.

Well that's something to do while you're "bored", for sure and for certain.

8. GIVE THANKS (in every thing)

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)

In every thing. Every. Thing.

The storms?

The sea billows?

The failures?

The shortcomings?

Every thing, thus saith the LORD.

Can you count your blessings? Can you name them one by one?

I'd love to see that list!!

9. TRUST (in the LORD with all thine heart)

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. [6] In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

It's going to be easier to log onto Pinterest than it is to open your Bible or fall to your knees in prayer.

The Devil is winning that battle because Pinterest isn't inherently bad. Pinterest, actually, is pretty great. We even have an entire board of Scripture! That's good, right?!

Well, yes.

But not as good as spending time with the LORD.

The Devil takes something mediocre, decent, good, even, and uses it to draw us away from what's best. We must also remember that even the best devotion books and guides aren't as good as the original Guide.

When times come when you're just, well, bored, for one, but maybe not really in the mood to read Leviticus (Believe me! I can relate!), it's going to take more than a smidgen of trust. Trust that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. (Hebrews 11:6)

One of my favorite Southern Gospel songs is 'God on The Mountain'. Those lines of verse 2 just sum it up so well:

We talk of Faith when we're up on the Mountain
But talk comes easy when life's at it's best
But in the Valley of trials and temptations,
That's when Faith is really put to the test.

Allow God to work your Faith. It's like a muscle- it grows weak when it's not exercised!

10. OBEY (your parents)

So, I'm an adult. Legally. By the standards our country has implemented. But I've read the Bible through and have never seen anything about obeying or honoring your parents until a certain date or age. Never! Not once! Can you believe that?!

It's a command. We are to:

  • Obey our parents, in the Lord: for this is right. (Ephesians 6:1)
  • Obey our parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. (Colossians 3:20)
  • Honor our fathers and mothers: that our days may be long upon the land which the LORD God giveth us. (Exodus 20:12- that's one of the famous 10 Commandments, and the first commandment with promise, as says Ephesians 6:2)
That last one might throw you for a curve, but it's especially important in adulthood, I'm learning. While obeying is doing what you're told or asked to do, honoring is sometimes doing something just because you know you should. Or, not doing something because you know you shouldn't. Because it would honor or dishonor your parents. Honoring is more than action- it's attitude. It's like integrity, doing what you know your parents would rather you do, even when they're not there to direct you.

These commands extend throughout our entire lifetimes, too! Not only does it go past the modern idea of "18 and free", but it extends, quite literally, until the day of your death. (If your parents die before you, it is still commanded of you to obey and honor them!)

11. VISIT (the fatherless and widows)

Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction... (James 1:27a)

Here's a practical idea. Next time you're just bored to tears, visit an orphanage. Volunteer at a nursing home for a day or two. I'm sure almost every local church has at least a couple widows that you could call on, cook dinner for, clean a kitchen for, or sit and talk to.

An interesting note about this verse, too, is that it doesn't say 'orphans'. It says 'fatherless'. There are a lot of fatherless kids out there. So, if you can't locate an orphanage, I'm sure you know of some single moms that could really use a few hours of help or rest. Babysit. Cook a meal. Clean a room. Show the kids how to build a Lego fire station. Read a Bible story. Invite them to church, or, if you can, offer to pick them up (or just the kids) for church services.

Put feet on your love.

And that's not all...

There are so very many things the Bible tells us to do that we're, simply put, not doing.

I'm not trying to offend anyone. But I'm also not trying to sugar-coat the truth.

We (including myself) need to get busy. We need to follow all of these black and white commandments laid out in front of us. We need to think about all of the unfinished business the LORD has waiting on our desks, because, isn't His business greater than our own, after all?

We [I] need to cut back on Pinterest.

Even though it's my favorite.

God's work for me needs to be my favorite.

That's my goal.

What's yours?

Kimberly
*All Scripture references are taken from the King James Version; words in red indicate quotes of Jesus.
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Thank you so much, Kimberly, for taking the time to write a post! I wholeheartedly agree...this world is much too incredible, and God has given us way too much to do for us to EVER use the pathetic and feeble phrase, "I'm bored." Let's get out there and work 'til Jesus comes! :)
Mykaela
P.S. Be sure to check out Kimberly's Blog if you want encouraging posts on living boldly for Christ! :)