Posts Tagged ‘encouragement’

New Scriptures

April 18, 2009

Hey everyone!

I was doing some thinking (ya I know it’s dangerous but sometimes it’s healthy XD), and I realized that there are probably a whole bunch of Bible verses that we don’t have on our Scriptures page.  I also realized that some of you readers might have some that we are missing.  If you know of any good, evangelism-related Bible verses that fit in any of our categories on the Scripture page not listed there, feel free to leave a comment with the verses and we’ll be sure to add them.  We really appreciate anything you can give us :-D.

Matt

Another testimony

April 5, 2009

I’ve gotten another testimony that someone has given me permission to share.  Enjoy :-).

My testimony is somewhat the normal… but it still is life-changing.

My family and I had just moved to Tulsa,OK, from Lancaster County, PA, in hopes of getting involved in full time ministry. I was two months to turning 6 so I was at the age where I could get scared by the dumbest things ever. I had watched the Veggie-Tales version of David and Goliath: Dave and the Giant Pickle. That night, the giant pickled haunted me in my dreams. He was chasing me around, fisting his boxing gloves madly. I woke up, terrified to go back to sleep. I called Mom in and, as we talked, I shared with her my desire to accept Jesus into my heart. Hand in hand, we walked down the Romans Road and she explained the seriousness of sin, the reason the Jesus had to die, God’s mercy and grace tempered with rightous justice, eternity and the Christian lif. She prayed with and that night, June 5, 2000, my name was written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

I went on through life, reading my Bible, praying… playing the whole Christian charades. It wasn’t until I was around 11 that I learned that the Christian life includes whole-hearted responsibility. Also, I dealt a lot with guilt… how could God possibly love me after I mouthed my sister off? After I disrespected my parents? I talked to my dad about my struggle and he explained that God’s love and mercy is boundless. He is infinite in grace and forgiveness. Then he explained about baptism and the purpose for that. I didn’t understand everything about it, but I soaked it up still the same. I got baptized last year in April and it is still one of the most beautiful days of my life.

To this day, I have challenges facing me every moment of every day. I still struggle with guilt and the radical love of God that overcomes that. Do you ever stand in awe and wonder at the fact that God would rather die than to live without you? I do. It still amazes me that God would send His only Son down to live on a downtrodden earth full of sinful people… the very people that would call for His death. It wasn’t fair (for Him or for us) that Jesus had to come down from His heavenly home and pay our debt. He didn’t want to.

He didn’t have to.

He prayed three times, “Father, please don’t make me go through this!” But He chose to surrender to the will of God and die upon the cross, so that we could live under righteousness.

That’s the radical love of God.

Persecution

October 19, 2008

Mat 5:11 Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 

Mat 5:12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.

Luk 21:12 But before all these, they shall lay their hands on you, and persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues, and into prisons, being brought before kings and rulers for my name’s sake.

Luk 21:17 And ye shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake.

Rom 12:14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.

When people read these verses we seem to normally have the attitude of Gratefulness. When reading them we usually say, “I sure am grateful we live in America where there is freedom to have a Bible and go to church. In some nations like China the Christians are actually persecuted for what they believe. God has blessed us with country that has freedom.” And then we leave it at that.

Those are fine things to say, and I am grateful that I can have a Bible without worrying about it being taken away. But I wonder if we could take God’s word a step further. Is the reason we aren’t being persecuted simply because we aren’t doing enough of what God wants? Are we being ignored by the world? The Chinese Christians are persecuted because they are following what God has told them to do enough to provoke anger from the government. Various Christians in Muslim countries are persecuted because they shine there light far enough to provoke the Muslims.

Now I wouldn’t know, but I would imagine that those persecuted Christians do have the choice to put there light under a bushel and keep there thoughts so secret that no one knows that they were Christians. They could keep their faith to themselves. But instead they provide enough salt in their country to be blessed by persecution. Is it possible that we aren’t rising to the occaision? Is it possible that if we were to do all God wished that we too would be persecuted?

Keep in mind that we need to act with love. That is one of the most fundamental things of Christianity. But some people will react to that love. In James it says how a friend of the world is the enemy of God (Jam 4:4). The scripture also says how God is love. We can conclude that friends of the world will be enemies of God’s true love. Yesterday I talked to a teenager about God. He started swearing and getting all upset at me(though his friend whispered “I believe you.” to me). The teenager repeatedly asked me why I was telling him that he was going to hell (which I hadn’t). I repeatedly replied that it was because I cared about him and didn’t want him to die without a saviour. He still continued to get upset at me. God bless him. I realize I made some mistakes with what I was saying, but he was reacting against love. Though it wasn’t near as much reacting as some Christians see.

Oh to be more like Christ. He died for us.

Levi