Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Poor Me


Here's something I received from George Bradley recently.

The next time you feel like GOD can't use you, remember...

Noah was a drunk
Abraham was too old
Isaac was a daydreamer
Jacob was a liar
Leah was ugly
Joseph was abused
Moses had a stuttering problem
Gideon was afraid
Samson was a womanizer
Rahab was a prostitute
Jeremiah and Timothy were too young
David had an affair and was a murderer
Elijah was suicidal
Isaiah preached naked
Jonah ran from God
Naomi was a widow
Job went bankrupt
Peter denied Christ
The Disciples fell asleep while praying
Martha worried about everything
The Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once
Zaccheus was too small
Paul was too religious
Timothy had an ulcer...

AND

Lazarus was dead.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Live Like You're Dead!

You know how weird it is when someone who has been following Jesus strongly suddenly does a 180 and walks away from all that is true, right, and pure?

I know a man who was a fine Christian leader, founder of a ministry organization, networker par excellence in building his ministry and then BANG, he left his wife and family and everything related to the name of Jesus Christ.

I used to envy his enormous energy levels and admire his broad network. Now I grieve his descent, stunned at the isolation of his new life (not quite the right word, is it?)

That's not all. When I think of him, I am struck with the ingratitude of such behavior in view of the fact that it was our sin that nailed Jesus to the cross. (“My own ‘little’ sins included,” my heart reminds me.) How could anyone treat with contempt so unspeakable a gift as the suffering and death of the Savior?

None of us is immune to temptation. Certainly I am not. But what grief and heartache to so many people comes from wrong choices.

Even more, what grief we bring to a loving Savior when we sin.

Besides, we're dead to sin. Romans chapter 6 says “How can we who died to sin still live in it? ... For one who has died has been set free from sin.”

"You're dead to sin, so live like it!" Paul says.

What a glorious, powerful and liberating death is this death of Jesus, given to us!

Even better, "You're alive to God!"

What a glorious life he has given us in place of the dry, empty shell our life was before we were found in Him.

"Don't let sin reign ... don't present your members to sin ... but present yourselves to God as those brought from death to life ..."

Present yourself to God. With Isaiah, with Abraham, with Samuel we can say, "Here I am, Lord. I'm all yours."

My son, Caleb, has just written a song that says this so much more powerfully than a blog. I've attached it. Listen to it and let me know what you think. (I had to use a video file format but it's actually an audio file in disguise.)

If you like his song, you can hear more at http://greenzonestudio.com/
video