Tag Archives: life

Bunyan’s Way, My Way, Your Way

21 Aug

My church is showing the movie The Pilgrim’s Progress next Friday and I plan not to miss it. The movie is based on the widely acclaimed Christian book written by John Bunyan with the same title written almost five hundred years ago. Bunyan wrote The Pilgrim’s Progress during his time in jail in the 17th century. He was imprisoned because of his faith but he did not let steel bars silence him. His book is an allegory of a man named Christian and his long journey to heaven. It’s a very interesting story and I encourage you to read it (or at least watch the movie).

I think there are many different, but equally valid, ways to view the Christian life. For example, John Bunyan viewed the Christian walk as a life-long journey on the path of righteousness. For him, and probably for many, Chrisitanity was/is all about staying on that path, not getting sidetracked and staying focused on the prize that lies at the end of the road. Others may view Christianity as a constant renewal of the mind every moment of every day with the Word and prayer.

The way you think of Christianity or the metaphor you use probably depends on your personality and your character.

As for me, I can’t help but think of Christianity as a new battle every day. Every morning when we wake up, God lets us live to see another day filled with temptation and sin and every night when we go to sleep, we regain strength for the next day’s battles. There are two reasons why I view Christianity this way.

  1. Lamentations 3:22-23 “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”
  2. Mark 1:35 “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.”

His graces are new every morning. Why? Because we need them to get through the day, to stay focused on God, on Christ and on the gospel to not fall in our spiritual battles. Every single morning when we wake up, His mercies are there. Why do you think that Jesus got up early in the morning to pray? Because he needed God’s help and strength to get through his day. Jesus knew he was going to face adversity from the pharisees. He knew people didn’t want him to preach, but that was his daily battle. That was his ministry. That was his calling. How could he not fulfill his calling without preparing himself with God’s mercies every morning by going to the Word and in prayer? How can we fulfill our calling without strengthening ourselves at the beginning of every single day?

Viewing Christianity as a daily battle appeals to me because it helps me remember what I must do as a disciple of Christ Jesus. It’s fine if the whole “daily” idea does not appeal to you. I don’t think there is a right and wrong on this subject, different methods appeal to different people. So whatever your method is, just make sure it works.

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“As Long as You are Glorified”

30 Jul

I found this song on a great blog called worshipmatters the other day. Bob Kaufflin is a great blogger and has lots of interesting things to say. His church started to sing this song recently because it reminds the church how we must praise God in the good times and bad. The song “As Long as You are Glorified” reminds us of the Lord’s right and duty to receive all glory in all situations of all His disciples’ lives.

Click here to listen to the song or right click to download the song.

Shall I take from Your hand Your blessings
Yet not welcome any pain
Shall I thank You for days of sunshine
Yet grumble in days of rain
Shall I love You in times of plenty
Then leave You in days of drought
Shall I trust when I reap a harvest
But when winter winds blow, then doubt

Oh let Your will be done in me
In Your love I will abide
Oh I long for nothing else as long
As You are glorified

Are You good only when I prosper
And true only when I’m filled
Are You King only when I’m carefree
And God only when I’m well
You are good when I’m poor and needy
You are true when I’m parched and dry
You still reign in the deepest valley
You’re still God in the darkest night

So quiet my restless heart
Quiet my restless heart
Quiet my restless heart in You

by Mark Altrogge.

The Rabbit That Stayed in the Hat

7 Jul

We can do so many things instantaneously these days. If you don’t feel like going through the trouble of measuring cups of water and preparing the coffee machine, you could always just add a tablespoon of instant coffee to some boiled water and you’ll have a hot cup of joe in no time. Are you hungry and craving some pizza? Well there’s no need for you to make the dough and pizza sauce, just pop a frozen pizza in the oven for about 20 minutes and your craving will disappear with every square inch of golden cheese. Feel like kicking back and watching a movie tonight? Well you don’t even have to leave your home, you can have a service like NetFlix deliver the movie to you and…  I think you get the drift.

My point is that we expect everything to happen quickly and easily. We’ve become impatient, we’ve lost the sense of working for something that takes a while to get.

So many people out there are looking for that magic formula that leads to happiness, no matter what religion or sect they’re part of. Whether you’re a Christian or a Hindu, you always try to find that great combination, that wonderful formula that makes you magically strive in your spiritual journeys. I’m saying this because I’ve experienced it myself, and we learn from our mistakes.

I mostly thought before that if I read the bible and pray daily and earnestly seek Him that all will go well. I thought that it was like magic, like that famous trick of the rabbit jumping out of the normal-looking top-hat. It’s supposed to be quick like instant coffee. We’re supposed to be changed quickly and never look back. Right?

Not exactly.

Things like reading the bible and praying daily and talking to Christian friends are great ways for you to strive in your spiritual walk with Christ, and there is truly no other way to have joy in life, so I can’t say that it’s not a magic formula. It actually is a magic formula, but this magic takes a little while longer than normal magic. The rabbit doesn’t quickly jump out of the hat. It stays in there. And just like that rabbit, we don’t become perfect Christians immediately after we’re saved. We’re not running an “Instant Perfect Christian” business here (although a business like that would make a heck of a lot of profit). The path of righteousness is long and sin in you and out in the world want you to turn back because the road is too long, but give it time. Work at it every day. If pain finds you, the only negative response would be to look back. You’ll learn from the pain and trials you meet, and by the grace of God, you’ll learn that the glory you’re pursuing is worth the pain and labor of the pursuit. Things worth having never come easy.

“When worn, distracted with the fight; you Captain gives you conquering might when looking up.”

Romans 8:18 “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”

The Undeniable Facts of Abortion

13 Feb

Here are a some statistics on abortion.

  • Annually, 46 million babies die from abortion worldwide. That’s approximately one baby being aborted every two seconds. By the time you finish reading this post, more than 50 babies will have been destroyed in the womb.
  • An estimated 48 million babies have been aborted since 1973. Approximately 24% of all U.S. pregnancies end in abortion. That’s almost one quarter.
  • Reasons for getting an abortion: 98% Personal Choice (unwanted or inconvenient), 1.7% Life/Health of Mother or Child, 0.3% Rape.

It’s amazing how people ignore the facts on abortion. There are no commercials on TV telling us that these innocent lives are being taken. There are no rich celebrities donating to anti-abortion organizations. Instead, we worry more about global warming and saving the earth and saving the innocent seals that are being hunted. We are caring more about nature and animals than actual human beings.

If you’re reading this last part, about 60 babies were slaughtered since you started reading this post. Now, do you care more about trees and seals or those 60 (now 68 and counting) babies who just died in the world?

Take Elliott as an example in the video below. Babies are human and they deserve to live. Even if for a few days.

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