Jesus Came From Small Beginnings

God Can Create Something Out of Nothing

     Jesus Christ was born to a carpenter named Joseph and a virgin named Mary. They were not celebrities or famous in their towns. They did not have a lot of money or live in a big house. They were everyday working people that believed in God. They were poor people that came from small beginnings.

 

In Our Society

     Today we think that the more money that we have the better life we will be. It may be true in the idea that materialistically you can buy whatever you want. We believe that if you are on tv or have a lot of likes on any social media site that you are popular. Being popular equates to a great life. You have to be popular to have a good life. We justify our life with everything that surrounds us, without remembering what lives inside of us.

“Blessed are the gentle: for they shall inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)

      Being gentle is not an idea that we consider to be useful. All the tale tales that we listen to talk about strong men that defeated a powerful enemy. About the Roman soldiers that lived their life being forceful and brave. To the modern day superheroes that have abs of steel, muscles all over and can break anyone in half. We all gravitate towards powerful people. It is human nature to do so. But, how we forget to fall on our knees and pray to the most powerful superhero of all time, GOD!!

The Twelve Disciples

     Jesus shows us how becoming rich in this world does not generate any treasures in heaven. I do not remember a story in the Bible where God stopped everyone at the gates of heaven to ask them how much money they had made on earth, before he would let them in. Actually the stories of the Bible are quite different. When Jesus went to search for his disciples, he found men that were lost and poor in all ways. Peter was an everyday fisherman. He would open his mouth just to stick his foot in. He acted courageous on the outside, but the minute that the storm became strong he would run the other way. When Peter sees Jesus walking on the water:

 

“Peter said, ‘Lord, if it is really you, then command me to come to

you on the water.’ Jesus said, ‘Come.’ And Peter left the boat and

walked on the water to Jesus. But when Peter saw the wind and the

waves, he became afraid and began to sink. he shouted, ‘Lord save

me!’ “ (Matthew 14: 28-30)

     How easy it is for all of us to fall flat on our face when it comes to the strength of our face. Another disciple was John “the Beloved.” He was also a man who made his living from fishing. In Jesus’s darkest hour, John is one of the privileged disciples who Jesus allows to go with him to the Gethsemane, to pray to God, before he is put on trial.

“He said to them, ‘My heart is full of sorrow, to the point of

death. Stay here and watch with me.’ After walking a little

farther away from them, Jesus fell to the ground and prayed,

‘My Father, if it is possible, do not give me this cup of suffering.

But do what you want, not what I want.’ Then Jesus went back

to his followers and found them asleep.” (Matthew 26: 38-40).

     John fell asleep during Jesus’s last moments. Jesus even told them to stay awake and pray against temptation. But he couldn’t do it. He couldn’t hold himself together enough to keep his eyes open.

How have other people started from small beginnings yet God used them for his own good? Please comment in the section below.

 

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Wrenching Yourself Out of The Darkness

You Cannot Find The Light On Your Own

          About 9 years ago, I lived in constant darkness. I didn’t even want to get out of bed. I contemplated suicide many times. I would play scenarios of crashing my car into a lake or tree. Watching myself die in those dreams and feel peace about it. So many times I would be cutting up vegetables for dinner, and I all I wanted to do was take the knife and slit my throat. To end my misery. I am so thankful that I had a daughter. I know because of her, I didn’t go through with it.

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This is a picture of a tractor trailer that my dad’s company picked up three days ago. The whole engine is a mess. Pieces are melted together, wires are hanging and their are holes burnt through everything. It smells horrible. The sight of the truck makes you sick inside. The only thought I kept having is did the truck driver make it out alive. This is how the inside of my heart was. An absolute mess. Things were broken that should have worked. I tried to kick start myself each day, but there was no spark. Just like this truck, I was melted together with holes and I felt like I couldn’t be fixed. Who could fix this type of mess?

 

     I wanted so badly to smile. To wake up and face the day with a positive outlook. To see the world around me as colorful and pleasant, but it wasn’t like that for me. I saw negativity in everything around me. It was like the shadows had their own shadows. Things were always dark and gloomy even on the brightest of sunny days.  I would go to work and try to pretend that my life was great. Who was I fooling? My life was a mess and I didn’t know how to fix it. I decided that it was time to try going to church. I wasn’t sure what difference that would make in my life, but I had to do something. So I woke up early one Sunday and told my daughter (who was almost 6 at the time), to put on a nice dress, we were going to church. And we did. We went to a small church in Avoca, NY. I was so nervous and embarrassed that I was walking into God’s house a wreck. I looked all put together on the outside, but inside I was screaming. It was like try to hold a beehive full of angry wasps that threaten to sting you to death, if you made the wrong move. I must have held my breath for what felt like 15 minutes. I was waiting for someone to run over to me and yell “FAKE!!” For them to see me, for who I really was. It never happened. Just the opposite occurred. People started smiling at me, saying “Hi,” asking me if I wanted to sit with them. They helped my daughter get settled into the children’s Sunday school class. They actually were nice to me. And I so needed it.

     I have to be honest and tell you that I was so anxious I didn’t even really hear much of the Sunday sermon, that the preacher was giving. I was so ashamed of my life and myself that I just wanted to run out the door. But, something kept telling me to stay. So I did. I sat right there in the pew and closed my eyes and prayed, “Dear God, if you can hear me, help me.” That was it. That was all that I could muster. I wanted to say more, wanted to cry and tell God that I was sorry, I wanted to ask him to forgive me for the way that I was living my life, but I didn’t. I sat there until the service was over and then went to get my daughter. We left right away, because I was too anxious to talk with anybody. We went straight home and changed back into our normal, everyday clothes and went on with our lives. 

 

     After my first Sunday at church I started to listen to a local Christian radio station (FLN). My ex-husband became enraged. He said “if you are going to teach our daughter that sh**, then I am going to teach her to love the devil.” At first I was appalled. How could someone be so angry at God? Hate him so much that they would slam the radio off and then yell at you. I was just listening to music. Something inside of me told me to ignore him, so I did. I started listening to Christian music when he wasn’t around. I could feel the darkness around me fading. It was a slow process, I have to tell you, but, an amazing one. I wanted to get out of bed in the morning. Now, I didn’t jump out of bed screaming “hallelujah,” God has given me another day, and I am going to make the best of it. No, I got out of bed each morning with a new light in my life.  Jesus was that light that showed me there was hope. Hope for the future. Hope for myself. Hope for my daughter. Hope to just get through today without wanting to kill myself. Hope. And it all started from that one day of going to church and telling God that I needed him in my life. Letting God be the light in my life was all I needed to start me on this amazing journey. 

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This is me today. I am very happy to announce that I am remarried with three kids. I love life. I still have my

down days, but I know where to turn to to make them better. Nothing is better than having a light in your life that

never goes out!!

Do you have a story about how you used to live in the dark, but God helped to rescue you into the light? Please leave a comment below.

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Why Jesus Is Someone That We All Look Up To

Who is Jesus? Who Are We To Be?

 

     Jesus Christ was one of the most influential people of all time. People have studied his story intensely for thousands of years. They have tried to figure out who he was and to live their lives just like him. A tall order if you ask me, or is it really? Do we see Jesus and think I could never be like him. The idea of trying to live a life as he did seems so out of reach that we do not even try. But, what if we found a way to not only live like him, but to start to change the world like he did?

 

Jesus Was The Light of The World

“Later, Jesus talked to the people again, saying, ‘I am the

light of the world. the person who follows me will never live

in the darkness but will have the light that gives life.”

(John 8:12)

     Jesus was such a bright light that wherever he went people flocked to him. By the thousands they crowded around him just to hear his voice. They would push through people just to touch him because they knew that his power would heal them. One woman in the Bible had been bleeding uncontrollably for 12 years and no one had been able to heal her. When Jesus comes to her town she seizes the opportunity to go and find him. When she does though there is such a crowd around him that for him to hear her problems seems impossible. “She came up behind Jesus and touched the edge of his coat, and instantly her bleeding stopped.” (Luke 8:44). One touch and her illness of 12 years was gone. Her belief in him had caused her sickness to disappear.

     Jesus’s light came from his holiness. We all want to be the light of the world. We want to make everyone’s dark days seem brighter. The problem is that we try to complete this task on our own. If we can just be more joyful than other people will see the light in us. If we could stop being angry and be happier, than I will be a light just like Jesus. We are missing the point that Jesus is the light. Nothing shines without him.

     The firefly is an extraordinary creature whose butt lights up. Their light caused by an organic compound found in their abdomen called luciferin. This chemical luciferin combines with oxygen to create a molecule called oxyluciferin. This causes light to appear. They can regulate how much air flows into their abdomen to create a pulsating pattern of light. They create this pulsating light in a love song to attract a mate. Sending signals of attraction back is the females job of answering the love song.

      As a human being we are unable to create this type of light in our lives. God did not equip us with the ability to make pulsating light to signal to others the love song of Jesus. We have to realize that our light comes from God and Jesus themselves. We can not try to be the light of the world on our own. We are only human. Just like the lightning bug wouldn’t be able to light up without the chemical luciferin, we can bring light into the world without our relying on the One True God.

“ You are the light that gives light to the world. A city

that is built on a hill cannot be hidden. And people don’t hide

a light under a bowl. They put it on a lampstand so the light

shines for all the people in the house. In the same way, you

should be the light for other people. Live so that they will see

the good things you do and will praise your Father in heaven.”

(Matthew 5:14-16)

     God is the light of the world, yet we want to believe that we are strong enough to complete our journey on our own. I don’t know about you, but I am not that strong. Everyday that I wake up and do not spend time with God my happiness seems to be missing. I am less patient with my kids, grumpier and seem to have a hard time finding joy in anything. It is like I live in cloudy haze where I am lost. I can not be the light of the world without living in Him.

“God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all,

So if we say we have fellowship with God, but we continue

living in the darkness, we are liars and do not follow the truth.

But if we live in the light, as God is in the light, we can share

fellowship with each other. Then the blood of Jesus, God’s Son,

cleanses us from every sin.” (1 John 1:5-7)

 

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The Wacky Religious Person That People Run From

Too Religious

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       It is so easy to become prideful when you gain wisdom from God’s word in the Bible. Becoming so religious that you leave God behind. You feel like you know the way that everyone is suppose to live and you want to tell them how to live their life. I can be one of those people, who tells others what to do. Who acts like I know everything and everyone around me should listen to me. But, what happens when we go too far? When we sin ourselves by trying to make others follow God in a way that is immoral and hurtful? Then what….

Beware of The Pharisees?

“Jesus warned them, ‘Be careful! Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.” (Mark 8:15). Jesus was warning us believers to not fall into becoming prey to our own prideful selfishness. The Pharisees at that time were men who claimed to follow God but whose hearts were bitter from being greeted with high regards. The Pharisees were treated like royalty and given a say with the government officials. People looked up to them and did what they said. They were to be the wise ones, who heard from God and helped to shepherd the people in the right direction. Only problem was that they let their own power go to their head. Their hearts had become hard and sinful. They led people to do things that were wrong. Their own eyes were closed to what they were doing. They didn’t even notice the error of their ways.

The Herods of The Bible And Today

When Jesus mentioned Herod, I believe that he was talking about the many Herod’s of the Bible. They were part of a dynasty that ruled over Israel during Roman times. They were appointed by Roman officials. One of the Herods, known as “Herod the Great,” wanted Jesus Christ killed, because, he was a threat to his own personal power. Jesus was said to be the new king and “Herod the Great,” didn’t even want to take the chance that this prophecy would come true. He gave orders to the three wise men, that once they found where baby Jesus was, they were to come back to him and tell him at once. He said that he also wanted to worship baby Jesus, but in reality he wanted him dead. Once the wise men figured out that Herod meant to harm the baby they never returned to inform him of the baby’s whereabouts. “When Herod saw that the wise men had tricked him, he was furious. So he gave an order to kill all the baby boys in Bethlehem and in the surrounding area who were two years old or younger.” (Matthew 2:16). His own power had gone to his head and now he was murdering innocent people. I can not even imagine being a mother, at that time, with a young son who they took from my home and just killed. The horror and devastation that Herod caused was immeasurable.

Another Herod in the Bible was Herod Antipas, the son of “Herod the Great,” He is the one that people sent Jesus to, during his trial to be crucified. He eventually gave into the people’s’ wishes and had Jesus crucified. This Herod also had John the Baptist murdered.

Herod Agrippa I, was the grandson of “Herod the Great.” He persecuted the church in Jerusalem. He became the first person to martyr an apostle. He had the apostle James murdered.

“Jesus began to use stories to teach the people. He said, ‘A man planted a vineyard. He puts a wall around it and dug a hole for a winepress and built a tower. Then he leased the land to some farmers and left for a trip. When it was time for the grapes to be picked, he sent a servant to the farmers to get his share of the grapes. But the farmers grabbed the servant and beat him and sent him away empty-handed. Then the man sent another servant, whom they killed. The man sent many other servants; the farmers beat some of them and killed others.

“The man had one person left to send, his son whom he loved. He sent him last of all, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’

“But the farmers said to each other, ‘This son will inherit the vineyard. If we kill him, it will be ours.’ So they took the son, killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.

“So what will the owner of the vineyard do? He will come and kill those farmers and will give the vineyard to other farmers. ‘Surely you have read this Scripture: ‘The stone that the builders rejected became the cornerstone. The Lord did this, and it is wonderful to us.’ (Psalm 118:22-23).

“The Jewish leaders knew that the story was about them. So they wanted to find a way to arrest Jesus, but they were afraid of the people. So the leaders left him and went away.” (Mark 12: 1-12).

Even though this story was for the Jewish leaders of that time, the idea behind the story still exist today. If we are so religious that we reject what Jesus is trying to teach us, then we are no better than an unbeliever. We are actually worse off, because we know what the word of God says to do, yet we choose to disobey it and do what we think is right. God gave us the ability to choose and have free will. When you use these freedoms to bring down the house of God, then you have fallen. Fallen deeper than someone who didn’t even know God. Trying to get back up is not easy if you reject the “cornerstone,” Jesus.

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