New Soul

I want a new soul – a soul that is more kind, more compassionate, and more obedient to God.  The opinion that others have of me pales compared to the opinion that God has of me.  I want to hear Him say, “Well done, good and faithful servant – enter into your rest.”

What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?  – Matthew 16:26

What good is a new year, a new beginning, if we don’t have a change?  Consider that the change does not have to be physical.  Yes, that’s what we see in each other – but what about a change of soul?  I know you probably don’t think much about your soul…  that invisible part of you; but what if I told you it’s well worth taking some time this year to ask your Heavenly Father what He would like to see changed in you.  There’s always room for improvement – in all of us!

A new soul…  a heart and mind like that of Christ Jesus, our Lord!  What does that look like?  It looks like moving forward in truth and right living, at whatever pace you can.  It looks like doing your very best in the face of difficulties that could slow you down.

Since New Year’s Day I’ve read and heard so many people teaching us how to be successful either financially or in our appearance.  It’s amazing how often we see these articles or hear these advertisements – but we don’t see or hear anyone emphasizing the importance of maintaining a happy and healthy soul.  Is any amount of money worth losing your soul?  Can a person lose all the weight they need to lose and still have an unhealthy soul?  Of course!

There is not a job, profession, time not spent in prayer, time not spent reading your Bible – that is worth it!  There are a gazillion ways to be successful here on earth, but be careful – because some of those methods involve the exchange of your soul.  I know, you are rolling your eyes and calling me crazy – but I’m right.

I know this is really long…  but take some time and take a look at this:

Oh I really like this!  

There is one way to be successful as God’s child.  Read your Bible and pray.  Does that mean you can’t have the best of both worlds?  According to God’s Word, it’s nearly impossible for a RICH man to make it to Heaven.  It likens a camel going through the eye of a needle.  Have you ever seen a camel go through the eye of a needle?  Yeah…  neither have I.  

Once we dedicate our lives to the cause of Christ, our priorities change.  We are not interested in the same things as those who are only after earthly successes.  We want different outcomes in life.  That’s why Christians are sometimes said to live IN the world without being a part OF the world.

The soul may be the most quiet part of you, but it’s not good to ignore what your soul needs.  Your soul longs for Christ and His love, peace and merciful salvation.  Let His amazing grace be your goal in this new year!

I invite you to take a look at this sermon on Philippians 2 from Darick Jones.  I worked with his mom, Pam, for several years.  Darick makes some good points here and I know I plan to glean and grow – hope you will too.  🙂

http://www.fbcclearwater.org/sermons-2/

Advertisements

MARTIN LUTHER KING JR DAY

1-16-mlk

 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.  I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—  I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

“Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

“Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”  – John 17:20-26

Our Lord prayed for His believers to be as ONE.  He wants us to be united as He and His Father in Heaven are ONE.  It’s no secret that America is more divisive now than it’s ever been.  If you can imagine a way to divide us – we’re divided.  Age, race, weight, height, religion, and on and on it goes.  God’s not pleased and Christians should lead the way in healing the scars.  The healing begins with prayer and studying God’s Word.

Read your Bible and pray.  That’s what it takes to be a true Christian.  – Harold McKay

My friend Harold also told me another “secret” to success as a Christian.  He said as long as you’re sincerely praying for someone, there’s no way you can hate or even dislike them.  In life, if we could just learn to pray for those who irk us in life instead of fighting back – it’d be wonderful.

Of all the famous quotes from Dr. King, this is my favorite:

mlk-quoteIn this world, we are “beholden” to one another.  We’re fools if we think we’re not.

martin-luther-king-jr-and-nonviolence-violent-violence-quotes-quote-darkness-cannot-drive-out-darkness-only-light-can-do-that-hate-cannot-drive-out-hate-only-love-camartin-luther-king-jr-i-have-a-dream-speechmlk4-getty_57363628166056335-img_20111008_123122-1024x768imagesikc9ys19martin-luther-king-jr-imagemartin_luther_king_jr_quote_2

timthumbmartin%20luther%20king%20jr%20picture-page-001

e3a01f0fb74a7706d872644ba61acbf5

We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive, is also devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.  – Martin Luther King, Jr.

I vote for LOVE and FORGIVENESS as a Christian nation in 2017!  May we strive for unity in America this year.  Let’s make God smile.  🙂

 

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY

TL MARTIN LUTHER KING JR DAY

DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING

I was only 2 years old then.  Toddling around, blissfully unaware of the need for civil rights in this country, unaware of something called war, or as they liked to call it, conflict in Vietnam.  From the photos I saw on the CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite, I’d say it was war, but what does a toddler know?MLK QUOTE (3)Mine was the generation that underwent mandatory desegregation.  Many families, both black and white, no longer saw grade point average as a priority, but were more concerned about whether their son or daughter would be on the “list” to be bussed across town to attend school.  It was a true concern for parents.  I was never on the list, not that it mattered.  I was busy with my own kind of integration program.  It was nice because it came so naturally – I love friendships that God creates, don’t you?

My best friend was Johnette, the P.E. teacher’s daughter.  We met in Bible club at school.  I loved hanging out with her because she loved Jesus and knew His wonderful law.  We talked and laughed and sang Sunday School songs together.   We had a common bond that could not keep us apart because we both loved Jesus.  It was Johnette’s character I adored and wanted to be around.  She never had a bad day and wore a big smile on her face!

You know, I don’t know to this day if Johnette rode a bus to school or not.  Was she part of the social experiment?  I don’t know.  I assume (and yes, I know what that means) she was in the neighborhood around the school since her mom worked there.  I don’t know – and I don’t care!  Johnette and I were best friends.  Nobody made us spend time together, but I believe God allowed us to cross paths.  For that gift, I will always be grateful.

No matter what a person’s race is, it is their character that will shine and attract others.  Johnette and I were friends in Christ.  We sharpened each other’s iron and grew to be very close friends.  She is African-American and I’m so Caucasian I can’t even pay to get a good tan.

Color blindness begins with me – and I refuse to see anything but a person’s character.  It should be our common like-mindedness that binds us in the Lord and nothing else.  I have brothers and sisters in Christ.  We all have a unique quirk especially from Him.  We look for that quirk in each other – that is when we begin to sharpen each other’s iron – and that is when great things for God begin to happen. 

Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase. – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

I wish I could have found the entire episode, but here is the last part of “Black Like Monica” from the CBS series, “Touched By An Angel”.  I hope you get a chance to watch the whole thing.  Monica was in a situation where she was a black human being for one day – but what a lesson she learned.

The Color of racism is fear.  – Monica, Touched by an Angel

I believe if we can keep our communication honest instead of ugly, God can help any relationship improve and eventually heal, don’t you?  ❤