Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The sincerest form of flattery

It has been said that the sincerest form of flattery is to copy someone.

You have probably seen it...
Maybe even participated in it yourself?
The copying or emulating of someone you looked up...

When I was a teenager I desperately wanted to be a rockstar.
I studied them, dressed like them, acted like them (badly ...), started a band.
Vince Neil was in a band called Motley Crue.
I thought he was pretty cool at the time. I wanted to be like him so much I even made copies of his stage outfits and wore one to a school dance. How embarrassing!!!
My life is quite a bit different now. I want to copy Jesus.

The simplest definition I have found for what copying Jesus is is be His disciple.
By definition disciples simply copy who they are being discipled by.
If I am being discipled by Jesus - I copy Jesus.

If your desire is be a disciple of Jesus like me, what is something you could copy from what you have seen Him do?
He trusted in God to meet His needs - even paying a temple tax via fish one day.
He was able to be a blessing even without resource - at a wedding feast.
He healed those He come into contact with.
He made
time to spend with His Father.
He said the right thing to the right people at the right time in the right way.
He picked the right people to spend the best of Himself with.

My challenge to you if you are keen, is to pick one thing and copy Jesus for the next 7 days and see what happens...
I am not meaning one day of copying. Copy Him every day for 7 days.
Then see what your life is like then?

Something to think about...

Ephesians 5:1
1 Peter 2:21
1 John 2:6

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Here comes the bride...

Most of us love a good wedding...
It is exciting getting the invitation and then planning to be part of the event.
On the day you file into the building with some anticipation.
What will the bride look like? What will the dress be like?
Probably questions the girls are more interested in, but everyone is curious just the same.

For some time leading up to the day, a lot of work has been going on.
Trying dresses. Dress fittings. Guest lists. Food choices. It is a big deal in a good way...
Then the moment arrives.
You know it has because the atmosphere changes. A hush falls. Music begins. Everyone stands and turns to see the bride revealed...

If you then spend the rest of that wedding critiquing and criticising everything about the wedding and especially the bride...I guarantee you would not enjoy the wedding and you will probably not be that supportive of the union.

Did you know that God's Church is referred to by Him as His Bride?
And a lot of work is going on preparing her for the 'big day'.
He is sending His Son at just the right time to come and collect the prepared bride to be with Him and join Him for eternity.

When we get all picky and critical of the Church we are actually picking on His Bride...
I have been guilty of this.
And I see so many others doing it...

Many criticise the Church whenever possible.
We think we know how it should be done and what is the only right way to 'do Church'.
It is not 'perfect', but it is being 'prepared'.

I am not saying to ignore issues. Everyone has issues.
Maybe we just need to trust God a little more that He is actually able to prepare His own Bride.

This week, let's together speak well of, pray for, serve, love, honour and respect the Bride that God is indeed preparing. It will do our heart good and help us all to see her for who she can truly be...

Something to think about...

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Band Aid Jesus

I have the coolest Band Aids my thoughtful sister sent me a while ago.
They are styled with images of a very catholic looking Jesus.

But here is something we could consider today - and it is real important to our faith.
Jesus was never supposed to be seen as a band aid to life!
That idea sells Him so short from all He has done and wants to continue to do for us.

He wants to be your :
Saviour - rescue you from the life you were drowning in, then give you the life you were destined for in Him.
Redeemer - someone who makes an exchange and pays whatever prices is needed for us.
Healer - someone who wants to us to be healed and whole, physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Friend - someone not content to watch us from a distance, He wants to be as close as possible every minute of every day.

If you want to settle for a Band Aid Jesus you miss out on all that.
His love can cover us yes, but that covering is supposed to do more than hide what is wrong...that covering has the power to makes things right!

Whatever you are facing at this time, please don't seek a Band Aid Jesus.
Expect what God wants to give you. A Jesus who wants to make you whole.
Band Aids while helpful simply cover the injury. My Jesus can do far more than cover it.

Something to think about...

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

Psalm 77

So you want to see God at work in your life?
That is a great thing to desire I think.
It is something every Pastor dreams of for the people they minister to. That they discover who God truly is and who they and He can be together...

So how do you go beyond this great idea to seeing it become a reality?

There are a number of things I could say in answer to that, but let's start with a key idea.
Honesty. Honesty makes a lot of difference...

When I was young my Mum and Dad were preparing one Saturday late afternoon for a dinner party they were hosting that night. Dad had tidied up around the outside of the home. Mum focused on the inside and the traditional role of food prep.
We were told repeatidly to not mess anything up or do things that would make their preparations more difficult than they already were.
The invariable did happen though. I somehow managed to break a window in the door everyone would be coming through. I remember trying to lie about it saying it wasn't me. Tried to hide beside a toy I was holding as though that would help me avoid the reality of what I had accidentally done.
It was not cool for me or my Mum as we wrestled away with who was to blame.
Eventually I was honest. It was a little uncomfortable.
But something strange happened. It seemed to resolve the situation and we moved on.

If you want to see God at work in your life...
If you want to sense Him more, maybe even discover His blessing over it, then honesty is a key to seeing that become a reality.

What always strikes me about reading the Psalms, is just how raw and honest they are.
I have many times wondered why they share so much information. Why mention pain? Why mention failing? Why mention a sense of not finding God at work as expected?
Read them carefully and you will see that honesty lead the writer somewhere, normally to a place of revelation, of healing and of moving forward in God.
Psalm 77 is known as one of the Psalms of Lament (you can check it out here).
The writer sings their heart to God. And in the process feels closer to God because of their honesty.
Maybe being truly honest with God today is something that could help you see Him more in your life?

Something to think about...