Tag Archives: Christ follower

Dealing with the stuff

With these days of prep for the yard sale, I’ve been stretched.

Something I struggle with is holding on to things.

Even as a child, I struggled with this.

As long as I can remember, I’ve struggled with this “stuff”.

God has been so gracious and patient with me.

He has taken me through times of extreme need.

He has walked me through downsizing, multiple times.

He has proven in miraculous ways.

He has taught me that things are never going to fix anything.

Currently, we are in a new season.

Last fall my husband started a small furniture business.

But with the furniture came other things as well.

Used items which were still in good condition.

We donated a bunch straight off, but some other things needed to be sorted out.

That took a while.

Now, with the good weather, we are selling all kinds of stuff.

And this new season of things is a little baffling to me.

Because God hasn’t had me follow my past ways of handling things.

This requires a lot of time, prayer, and patience.

Instead, I’m learning a new way to deal with stuff.

And it’s brought me back to realizing two things:

1st my flesh is greedy and I need to be on my guard against this.

2nd God can use anything or many things to teach me to cling to Him and nothing else.

Deuteronomy 6:5 KJV — And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for this command. Thank You that You are giving us the gift of life, contentment, peace, and true joy in these words. When I focus upon You and Your truth with every part of me, I find all I need and all I want. Lord, it is when I leave off following You with a whole heart that I get into trouble and become confused or depressed or discouraged. Lord, thank You for telling us how to live, that we might not pierce ourselves through with many sorrows. Lord Jesus, following You is not easy, it goes against my flesh, against the culture, and against the enemy, but great is Your faithfulness! I know You chose that which was difficult, to be our Savior. Please help me to choose it as well, each day, to walk in Your ways and to love You with all of me. Thank You for Your faithfulness, truth, protection, wisdom, understanding, justice, goodness, righteousness, and salvation. I could continue speaking Your praises day and night and never come to the end! I praise Your holy name, Jesus. Amen.

Simply–love

Deuteronomy 6:5 KJV — And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

God’s Word is clear, we are to love Him.

That our hearts should be devoted to Him first, most, and best.

Because life lived in any other pursuit will lead us astray, into sin, shame, pain, and eventually death eternal.

But for those who love the Lord God, the benefits are incredible.

Psalm 31:23 KJV — O love the LORD, all ye his saints: for the LORD preserveth the faithful, and plentifully rewardeth the proud doer.

Psalm 145:20 KJV — The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

Being preserved by God is indeed a wonderful promise, giving us a place to find rest and peace beyond today’s trouble, past the temporary struggles, and beyond the grave.

Joshua 23:11 KJV — Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, that ye love the LORD your God.

It’s not complicated, love God.

Luke 10:27 KJV — And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.

In loving God, we find another opportunity: loving others.

Because love is a gift meant to be shared.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 NKJV — Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.

Love is more than an emotion and far more than any physical pleasure, it is a continued support, care, and nurture.

Romans 12:10 KJV — Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;

Ephesians 4:2 KJV — With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

Love is what Jesus shows us.

Hebrews 10:24 KJV — And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:

Just as Jesus encouraged the disciples in loving God and loving others, we too can be encouraged in both, and encourage one another.

It’s simple: love.

Love God first, most, and best.

And in doing so love others.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for Your Word. Thank You for loving and guiding each one of us. Lord Jesus, thank You for living a life of love and sacrifice. You are our perfect example in all things and we are so blessed to have Your Word to teach us and Your Spirit to convict us. Please, show me where I need to grow in love. Please let me never weary of doing good, but to increase my efforts in every way to follow You with all that I am. Lord, there is nothing more awesome than You and Your love is amazing. Please continue to guide my heart, speak through Your Word, and show me Your way. Thank You for Your love. Thank You for life. I praise Your holy name Jesus! Amen.

Follow the Leader

And as He walked by the Sea of Galilee, He saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. Then Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.”  They immediately left their nets and followed Him.
Mark 1:16‭-‬18 NKJV

This wasn’t a game or a joke, Jesus was calling Peter and Andrew to follow Him.

Can anyone imagine what this moment was like for them?

They immediately take action and follow.

Peter goes from a fisherman to…a preacher, an elder in the church, a man God used mightily.

The Gospels are clear, Peter made his mistakes, but those things do not impead his following.

Even after he denied he knew Jesus, Jesus restored him. (John 21:15-17)

The truth of Jesus’s life, death, and resurrection were testified to by this Fisher of Men.

2 Peter 1:16 NKJV — For we did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty.

Peter’s life was forever changed by the Lord Jesus.

His choice to follow Christ is one each of us has the opportunity to make.

In this we can be encouraged to follow Christ as well.

To live a life of devotion to Jesus.

The Bible clearly explains what following Jesus is.

Here are a few verses:

Luke 9:23 NKJV — Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.

John 10:27 NKJV — “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.

John 12:26 NKJV — “If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.

It is through love that Jesus came, died, and rose again.

It is through love that He called his disciples and they in turn discipled others.

It is through love that anyone can be a follower of Jesus Christ.

John 14:21 NKJV — “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him.”

When Jesus calls you to follow Him, what will your answer be?

Will you follow the Leader?

I truly hope so.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for Your Word and Your truth. Lord, thank You for giving us hope that we too can follow You. Lord, You do not see as man sees. We get caught up with looks or outward things, but You see the heart. Lord Jesus, purify my heart before You. Please continue to help me pick up my cross and follow You. Lord, thank You for Your love, Your faithfulness, and Your salvation. My eyes are on You, Lord, lead me. Amen.

Counter culture

For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
Philippians 1:21 NKJV

Let nothing be  done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
Philippians 2:3 NKJV

Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
Philippians 2:14‭-‬15 NKJV

The key to living as Christians is Christ.

Do you live for Jesus every single day?

If “yes” is the answer, how has the Lord helped you learn this?

What choices in your attitudes, outlook, and actions do you consistently hold to?

In what ways do you guard yourself from the lies, snares, and trucks of sin?

How do you cultivate your walk with Jesus daily?

In what ways are you upholding others in their journey with Christ?

No matter the culture one finds themselves in, it can quickly turn one aside from following steadfastly to the path of Christ.

There are so many different ways this happens.

It could be the culture is pagan and the very name of Jesus is illegal.

The culture might be secular, where the common law is “do what feels good” without any thought to the consequences.

It might be strictly religious, without even a hint of the love of Christ, only the rigid unbending laws placed upon man by man.

Or it could be something quiet different.

No matter the culture one finds themselves, it is the individual Jesus came to save.

Therefore each one of us has a choice.

Our individual life was created by God.

He has a plan for every single person.

And He redeems each one who calls upon His name, Jesus saves.

Therefore, each one has the opportunity to a personal day-to-day relationship with Jesus.

Unfortunately, that’s very counter culture.

No matter the culture one lives in, that culture wants each person to follow the culture.

Therefore, as Christ followers, our lives should not look like every other around us.

Infact, we are supposed to shine in the darkness.

Of course a candle doesn’t give off light by itself.

It must be lit.

Only Jesus can shine through our surrendered lives.

Let each one of us Christ followers say along with Paul:

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I  do,  forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13‭-‬14 NKJV