Friday, June 27, 2008

God Doesn't Lie

Here are the opening words to Titus:
1Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness, 2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began 3and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior;

4To Titus, my true child in a common faith:

Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

In these words we find that Paul is again the author of a letter to another pastor. Titus is leading the Cretan churches.

So just who is Paul?
  • a servant of God
  • an apostle of Jesus Christ
  • a preacher of God's word
Why?
  • for the sake of the faith of God's elect and their knowledge of the truth
  • knowing the truth helps people be godly
And what do we learn of God?
  • God promised us eternal life before the world began
  • God never lies
  • God has good timing. :) .... at the proper time, he manifested his word through the preaching that he entrusted to Paul.
He wrote this book to help Titus. Titus is a true child of Paul's in common faith.

He extends a greeting: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

I remember when I was in catechism being asked if there was anything God could not do. And I stubbornly insisted that there was nothing that God could not do. Even when confronted with the verse that God cannot lie, I was stubborn and insisted that God could do anything that he wanted to. Boy was I stubborn back then! Still am, but at least now I can graciously admit when I am wrong.

Think about this... God cannot lie.
No white lies. No lies at all. None of this.....lest shade the truth a bit so that this person doesn't get hurt feelings, or get angry or whatever.
God does not lie.

Do you know how trustworthy that makes God? Wow...just so eminently trustworthy. I never have to wonder if something he tells me is accurate or not.
That means I can take his word to mean just what it says. The whole of scripture. God doesn't lie. He gave his words to his chosen authors and they wrote them down in their own style. God doesn't lie....the whole bible can be believed.

So when we read that Paul has been commanded to preach God's word we know that Paul' is starting from a place of truth. Makes sense that he gets angry at people who twist God's word or add things to God's word to promote their own agendas. We as believers should do the same.

When we are told we must learn God's word in order to become godly, we know that God's word is a reliable guide. God doesn't lie....we as believers aught not either!

When God says he promises us eternal life...we aught to believe him...he doesn't lie!

God doesn't lie. Just believe his word, and if he's your Lord and Saviour...do it. It will make you more godly and fit for his service.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Titus, a brief overview

Unable to have a long devotion this morning as Justin is up being a boy with a cold and having problems with his tonsils so being somewhat demanding of his old mommy. So.....

Read over Titus this morning. This is a small book in the New Testament.
Written by Paul to Titus who lived on Crete.

An initial read-through seems to indicate that this book is written to help Titus pick good men to lead the church and talks a bit about the importance of good doctrine. Will probably have lots of things packed into it which will be fun to explore. Hopefully will get back to Titus tomorrow again.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Worried about his ministry

The close of 2 Timothy. Ends with a fairly long section, we'll see if we get through it all today, if not, there's always tomorrow (or Monday). Here are the last words from chapter 4.
9 Do your best to come to me soon. 10For Demas, in love with this present world, has deserted me and gone to Thessalonica. Crescens has gone to Galatia, Titus to Dalmatia. 11 Luke alone is with me. Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is very useful to me for ministry. 12 Tychicus I have sent to Ephesus. 13When you come, bring the cloak that I left with Carpus at Troas, also the books, and above all the parchments. 14 Alexander the coppersmith did me great harm; the Lord will repay him according to his deeds. 15Beware of him yourself, for he strongly opposed our message. 16At my first defense no one came to stand by me, but all deserted me. May it not be charged against them! 17But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. So I was rescued from the lion’s mouth. 18The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

19Greet Prisca and Aquila, and the household of Onesiphorus. 20Erastus remained at Corinth, and I left Trophimus, who was ill, at Miletus. 21 Do your best to come before winter. Eubulus sends greetings to you, as do Pudens and Linus and Claudia and all the brothers.

22The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.

Paul knows that his time on earth is drawing short, and he wants to see Timothy again before he dies. "6For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come." But his thoughts remain on his ministry. Demas has left him and the ministry, Crescens and Titus have positions elsewhere, all he has helping him is Luke and he wants more folks around him to help him in his ministry. He asks Timothy to bring Mark with him when he comes because Mark is helpful to him in his ministry.

You know I read that and think wow....here is Paul, knowing that his time on earth is growing short and he's worried about his ministry. What a change from the people that generally surround me. Many of the older folk that I know....their focus is not on their ministry before God. They actually don't even seem to think of that very often. It's on their aching bones, or how they can't do what they once did or....(you fill in the blank). Paul is worried about his ministry....really changes one's perspective. Granted I must say that many younger folk who aren't as close to death aren't as ministry focused as we aught to be either. We have our own concerns and we often consider God not at all, or at least don't worry too much about our ministry before him.

Paul is a good example to us in this.

Paul continues his request to Timothy, asking him to bring his cloak, books and parchments along with him.

He warns Timothy to stay clear of Alexander the coppersmith who did him great harm. He is a man who opposes the message of God. He then explains how at first when he was charged no-one came to help him, but since then God has provided for him. As he says
17But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. So I was rescued from the lion’s mouth. 18The Lord will rescue me from every evil deed and bring me safely into his heavenly kingdom. To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Paul's focus is always on his ministry before God. How God strengthens him for the task at hand. And then he gives all the glory to God. He is such an example to me.

He closes off this letter with greetings to various peoples.
He restates his desire that Timothy come to him, preferably before winter starts.
And passes along greetings from others.

22The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Inspiration

Jen inspired this in our boy with her post here.

As you can see Giant Cosmos and Tagu have to take their turns playing, just like Nora did.
Earlier Mommy had to help Tagu play on one piano while Justin played on the other. :)

video

12 year olds running their families?

Dan over at Biblical Christianity pointed my way over here.

Have to admit...I find this a bit nuts. Not TOO unexpected in some ways coming from Quebec, but all the same...a bit nuts.

MONTREAL, June 18 (UPI) -- An appeal will be filed in a Montreal court after a Quebec judge overruled a father who grounded his 12-year-old daughter for dangerous Internet use.

The lawyer for the father, who can't be identified to protect the girl, told The Gazette newspaper that Justice Suzanne Tessier overstepped the court's bounds last Friday when she ruled in favor of the girl's legal challenge and said she would be allowed to go on a school trip her father had forbidden because of misbehavior.

"I don't think this tribunal was the proper forum for a decision like this one," lawyer Kim Beaudoin said. "If we don't learn at the age of 12 there are rules to follow, when do we?"

He said he was preparing an appeal based on the fact the judge acknowledged the girl's repeated defiance of her father's house rules.

They included bypassing security settings to block Web sites the father didn't trust, then using a friend's computer to access those sites. Beaudoin said the girl also posted online photos of herself "inappropriate for a child her age," the report said.

Just trying to imagine a court overturning a grounding of a defiant 12 year old. Dad says no field trip, child rebells and says I'll force you to let me go, and proceeds to do just that through the court system. A grounding folks....a "hey, you did something you know you weren't to do, and as a result you lose something that you wanted to do". Not a spanking, beating, starvation, locked in a room, and so forth, just a you can't go on a school field trip!!!!!!!

The court should have imposed a stronger punishment on her I think.

It's taken away all the rights of the father in one fell swoop. What recourse does he have now in disciplining this defiant child?

Part of me wonders what happened prior to do that the child has gotten so defiant, but ARGH!!!! what is the court system coming to when 12 year olds are allowed to, and in fact, encouraged to by this case, to run their families?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Result of Living out your life of faith

6For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.
These words are interesting to me, they come from 2 Timothy 4. They follow Paul's exhortation to Timothy on what his mandate as a pastor was.

Here Paul has been evangelizing, pastoring churches all over the Jewish and Gentile world of his day. He was responsible for alot of churches. He faced persecution, hunger, beatings, shipwrecks and so forth.

And he tells Timothy "I am already being poured out as a drink offering". His life is/was a sacrifice to God.

He knows what he's given to God. His whole life changed when he knew who God really was.
He knows that he's ready to go. "the time of my departure has come".
He knows how he's lived his life "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith".
He knows what is waiting for him "the crown of righteousness".
He knows that what awaits him is what awaits every other believer who lives life as he has. "not only to me, but to all who have loved his appearing".

I so often question my faith, what I believe, how I live it out and so forth.
And yet I find myself having this confidence that Paul has. That in the end, God will grant to me a crown of righteousness for living my life of faith.

We need to have this confidence.
YET we need to question how we live out our lives of faith.

Paul gave Timothy his mandate as a pastor, then he said, see what awaits you at the end of it all. Know this to be true. Do your job as a believer. Know that God will reward you for living out your life of faith.

Do you know it truly?

Monday, June 16, 2008

One thing I don't get

This is one of those things that I just don't get. And since it's reoccurring, I thought I'd ask a larger audience.

It comes up whenever Jim is gone and I'm not. Or when we're both gone but get back a bit early on a Sunday.

The expectation that we will attend services at our church. And the, what seems to me, extreme disappointment if we don't.

If Jim isn't here I go elsewhere. Why? Because I love praise and worship music. I really do. It brings out the free feeling let's just praise God and dance before him stuff that is in me. Yes, I like hymns...but praise music just goes a bit deeper for me.

Our church doesn't do praise and worship music. It is very hymn oriented, and I don't mind that at all. I love singing the hymns. They are filled with good stuff. So don't misunderstand me. I don't dislike hymns, I love them, but I, oh, how I love good praise and worship music.... there's just something about it that I just, in someways, crave in singing praise to my God.

So... when Jim's not here I take that as an opportunity to go "get my fix!". To just go to a church where other folks are singing praise and worship music well and just be able to openly praise God with them doing it. Much different than singing by oneself at home.

Why doesn't Jim attend our church when 'off'? Well....because church is work. It's not like people forget that he's pastor and just chat with him like any other fellow. It's work. People don't come up to him and say...so Jim, how was your week? It's pastor, how are you, what did you think of the sermon, and are you coming for a visit this week and so on ......

So when he's off, he likes to be elsewhere so that he's completely off. When folks who work outside the church are away they don't go to their jobs either do they? Or if they do their co-workers will generally say (with complete shock)...what are you doing here? Same principle. When one is off, one likes to be completely off.

This insistence that people have to go to their home church whenever they are in the neighbourhood is one that I simply do not understand. Why does it make someone a bad church member if they visit other churches instead of always attending their home congregation? As long as one is giving to their home church materially, physically, etc.... then what does it matter if one chooses to worship elsewhere 4-6 times a year?

Can someone help me understand this?

Does it really matter to God?

Please, if someone can truly help me understand this, it would be nice. Even if I continue to disagree, would be nice to understand it a bit better.

The Mandate for a Pastor

1 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 5As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
These words start off 1 Timothy 4. Jim reminded me yesterday to remember that the book of Timothy is Paul's letter to a young pastor. We have to keep that in our heads to remember all the context properly. Helps with better understanding the letter. Thanks hun! :)

Young pastors, actually any pastor, can benefit from reading Paul's exhortations to Timothy. To be patiently ready to
  • preach the word
  • reprove
  • rebuke
  • exhort
This is what a pastor is to do. He teaches people as he preaches the word, as he reproves, rebukes and exhorts the people under his care. A pastor must always be ready to do this. And he must be willing to do some patiently and in a teaching manner.

A time will come when people won't want to hear what a pastor has to say (what God has to say) but will just want to follow people they choose, people that suit what they want to hear better. BUT regardless of that....the pastor is to ready to endure suffering, be sober-minded, and be ready to do the work they are called to .... the work of an evangelist, a person who will teach people who God is. Do the job you are called to.

Being married to a pastor... I know his job is tough.
People expect so much from him. They want and want and want. Sometimes that wanting wears him out mentally. It's a mental job more than a physical job. And that can be just exhausting. :) But I see him trying....trying hard to fulfill the mandate God has placed on his shoulders. That mandate to always to ready to preach God's word, to patiently teach God's people more about who God is. That's what he does.

He needs the encouragement more than anything else.

Let's encourage our pastors folks. Encourage them to keep on with the job that God has given them. Not demanding it, but encouraging it. Calling our pastors to stand up and do the job that God gave them...preach, teach, rebuke, exhort and reprove. That's their job. Let's help them do it.

The Beach

Took the boy to the beach (the Pinery).
Had a quick lunch first, filled with comments about keeping his food safe from the hunting ants. (ants hunt for food aka...hunting ants).

Boy....did he have fun. Sand, water, toys, other children. What more could an almost three year old ask for?

After an small argument about the need for ear plugs and head band, he went swimming. Mostly just walking around in the water but some 'swimming' as well.

He fell in... it was alarming...but mommy rescued him. :)

My fake crocs became boats. :)

Comments from the boy:
  • Is cold!
  • Do it one more time! (make a big circle walking in the water)
  • I swimming.
Left early because of rain and lightening.

Justin, should we go to the beach again?
Yes! Want go now? :)

The only thing he didn't like was the sand that sticks to your feet when you're all wet from swimming. Hard to get off and just a bit "ick" feeling. He'll adjust. :)

So if you are in my neck of the woods and want to go the beach....just stop on by and we'll happily go to the beach (we have a pass so just ride with us). :)

Friday, June 13, 2008

This is Good for me....

Little boys and summer. makes for late nights and early mornings. He's not up yet! :) I have unhindered time for devotions.

Anyways......2 Timothy 3 is where we left off.
10 You, however, have followed my teaching, my conduct, my aim in life, my faith, my patience, my love, my steadfastness, 11my persecutions and sufferings that happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, and at Lystra—which persecutions I endured; yet from them all the Lord rescued me. 12Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. 14But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it 15and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
Paul has just finished telling us what people will be like in the last days (the days we are currently living in). We are to avoid certain peoples - those people who in essence dislike (hate) the truth and who have corrupted minds. Just avoid them.

Today we learn that Timothy and his church have been following the teachings of Paul. Seeing his aim in life, his patience, his love, steadfastness and so forth. They have seen all that he has gone through in various places, and they know that God has rescued Paul from them.

Following the teachings of Paul means they've been living what they have been taught. The live like Paul does. They follow his example in faith, patience, love and steadfastness.

Paul reminds them that all believers who desire to live a godly life will be persecuted. Paul assumes that this is a given. Evil folk on the other hand, they won't be persecuted. They will just go from bad to worse.

Look at the world we live in. Do you see how those who oppose God seem to get their own way all the time? The politically correct agenda that lets everyone else talk except for Christians? Hollywood and it's entertainments that are just getting worse. Christians are more and more having to fight for what is right and of God. Not that I think that's such a bad thing. It will show more clearly who is of God and who well..... isn't. Makes better examples for our children to follow.

But Paul reminds his readers that they do know who they believe in. They aren't among the deceived or the deceivers. They firmly believe in God. They know who they have learned their faith from. Timothy has learned the scriptures since he was a child. He knows God. He knows that the word of God will make him "wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus."

We need to know that
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
Think about that for a moment.
ALL Scripture. Not just select parts, but all scripture. It is all useful
  • for teaching
  • for reproof
  • for correction
  • for training in righteousness
Even those endless genealogies. Even Revelations and the various proverbs that don't make immediate sense. All Scripture. That means as believers we know to know the word of God. It will equip us for every good work. Know your bible believer! Just know your bible!

This is a good word for me today. To remind me of what should be most important in my life. Knowing God's word and following it. It is good for me.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Life with a Severe Disability

A friend sent me this video.
It's long.
But I found it interesting.
You might too.

It plays in WMV.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Avoid them!

Oh my... Do I feel bagged this morning. Silly thunderstorm with even sillier dog. And a boy child who's up with the sun! This will be a good day to remember that the Lord provides for all my needs. :)

Anyways, was looking at the book of 2 Timothy chapter 3 and thought...do I have the brains for this one this morning? Not sure that I do, but I can at least look it over, post my thoughts and re-visit tomorrow if I think that I aught to.

Here then are the opening words of this chapter.
1But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, 4treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. 6For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions, 7always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth. 8Just as Jannes and Jambres opposed Moses, so these men also oppose the truth, men corrupted in mind and disqualified regarding the faith. 9But they will not get very far, for their folly will be plain to all, as was that of those two men.
Paul had just finished giving Timothy a list of various attributes and attitudes to avoid or pursue. This is how one lives honourably before God. He goes on in this passage to remind Timothy that life will not be easy for them. That the end days will have times of difficulty.

Paul talks about what people will be like
  • lovers of self
  • lovers of money
  • proud
  • arrogant
  • abusive
  • disobedient to their parents
  • unholy
  • heartless
  • unappeasable
  • slanderous
  • without self-control
  • brutal
  • not loving good
  • treacherous
  • reckless
  • swollen with conceit
  • lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God
  • having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power
What are we to do with such people? AVOID THEM!

Why?

Because in essence, these folks don't want to know the truth and in fact oppose the truth. They are corrupted in their minds and disqualified regarding the faith. Even though they try to sneak in and capture weak women, and are burdened with sins etc, they will not get very far in what they are doing, for they will be seen for what they are.

I have to admit, I read through that list and what came to my mind was...these are things I can be alert to in my own life, and as such avoid them and deny their power over me. To continually seek the fruit of the spirit to be evident in my life.

And not to feel badly if I do what Paul tells me to here...to avoid those proud, haughty people, those who really don't want to know the truth and love of God.

That's all I got for today with a lad begging me to be all done with my 'botions.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Today is My Mom's Birthday


Okay...it's my mom's birthday today.
Shall we all wish her a happy birthday?

She's a grand, grand lady. Lots of good heart in her. Tries hard to keep everyone happy. Has a ready smile. Loves dad to bits and pieces. Is there to talk so often. Loves my boy-child very much even if sometimes he is too much of a handful for her. Loves the Lord her God with all her heart and tries hard to live a life of service before him. Likes to laugh. Like me, can get overwhelmed with things and needs to take a break. Loves to chat up the neighbours. :) Hmm....I get that from her too! Gardening, budgies when we were young, patience with children, and ....oh what can I say...she's a good mom! :)

Smiles, laughter, conversation, and solid witness. That's my mom.

Anyone who wants to wish her a happy birthday is more than welcome to do so. I would be happy to pass them along to her. :)

How to live Honourably before God

His final exhortation of 2 Timothy 2 has Paul saying:
22So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. 23Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. 24And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, 25correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, 26and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.
Do you remember yesterday how we that we need to avoid the dishonourable things in life? Here Paul expands on that a bit.

Avoiding the dishonourable means
  • fleeing youthful passions
  • pursuing righteousness
  • pursuing faith
  • pursuing love
  • pursuing peace
  • doing this with other folks who call upon God with a pure heart
  • having NOTHING to do with the foolish, ignorant controversies -- all they are good for is quarreling
  • Don't be quarrelsome
  • Being kind to everyone
  • being able to teach others
  • patiently enduring evil
  • correcting the opponents of God gently -- who knows if God will grant them repentance? He just might help them escape the snare of the devil.
Nice to have a list isn't it?
Helps make things more black and white in what it means to live honourably before God, which helps us be ready for any service that God might call us to.

You know, I've had some folks say to me...But I can't teach!!! But yet they share their lives and how they do things naturally. Everyone can teach, just not all are called to teach in a formal way. And just as everyone can teach, so also can everyone learn to be patient, kind, gentle, loving, and so forth.

It is an action. It is purposeful. It doesn't just happen overnight for most folks. But if we do, ah....but if we do, God can use us to further his glory. Isn't that just too cool? :)

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Late Night Laughter

Justin had a late nap, so was still up when it was time to go to bed.

I let the dog out to go pee, Justin's response was "I want to go pee too!"

Out he rushes, stands on the lawn, WAITS for Sassy to go pee, and then says "we go peeing!" "Justin peeing with Sassy!"

I laughed.
Jim said what?

I told him, then said...I want to blog this. :)

Good night all! :)

Weekend update and A fire (not ours)

Jim wrote a post here on our past weekend.

We learned this morning via my mom that the church, Riverside ARP, that we worshipped at had a fire!! ACK!!

Clips from the article in THE RECORD.

A passerby saw flames coming from the Riverside Reformed Presbyterian Church on Montrose Street in Cambridge shortly after midnight and called 911, Platoon Chief Bob Laurence said.

Fire crews found a fire in an administrative area of the building.

It took firefighters from three stations about 30 minutes to extinguish the blaze, Laurence said.

.....

At least one person reported hearing glass breaking at the time of the fire, Heinzel said.

Police said it's still not clear if the church was targeted. "At this point, there's no indication one way or the other," he said. "We're hoping someone will come forward with information to help us understand the circumstances that led to the fire."....

Pastor John Van Eyk said services were held as usual on Sunday night and the building had been locked up. He was still awake at his home next to the church when he heard the sirens.

"Sin happens," he said with a shrug as he glanced over at the flapping yellow tape around the perimeter of the building. "It's not something we approve of, but it happens . . . We see this as part of the Lord's plan for our lives " ........

Fire officials have pegged the initial damage at about $150,000.


I so enjoyed worshiping with this congregation on Sunday. I felt at home right away. Hearing this news was a bit of a shocker to me. I do know that the Lord will provide for them.

Prayer for this congregation would be appreciated.

Honourable or not?

Yesterday morning when I got back from walking Sassy my neighbour across the street stopped to chat for a bit. He's a retired fellow with a straight forward attitude about life. Has stuff in his life that I can't say I'm too thrilled with, but he's got a grandson about Justin's age so I'm building some bridges.

Anyways, yesterday we got to chatting abit and we ended up talking abit about God. I mentioned to him about if we love God that we need to live the way that God wants us to. This man is by no means a believer...I do have high hopes for him though. Anyways, he agreed with me, and said...Suppose if we don't we'll burn in hell right. I said, yep, that's basically how it goes. And that's how I left it, I suppose I could have asked him more, but that just seems a good place to leave it. He's hoping to come over sometime this week to let his grandchildren play with bunnies.

I mention that because 1. It be good to pray for him to see the light of God's glory for himself. and 2. because when I read today's passage I was drawn to think of him again.
20Now in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver but also of wood and clay, some for honorable use, some for dishonorable. 21Therefore, if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable, he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house, ready for every good work.
Do you see it? How we need to keep ourselves away from the dishonourable? By doing so, we keep ourselves ready for useful, help, good works?

It's part of living the way God wants us to.
If we allow ourselves to be immersed in the 'ick' of life then how can God use us for that which we are intended for?

A gold pot used as a potty is not going to be used as a fruit dish now is it?
Or a silver pot used for washing dishes isn't going to hold some roast lamb either!

Keep yourself clean. Free from dishonourable uses. Be willing to be set apart, to be used for holy things, useful things, ready for every good work that God sets before you.

I'm learning more and more about what that means. Seems a bit mind boggling sometimes. But it is done, one day at a time...just choosing...is this a honourable use of my time or not?

Monday, June 02, 2008

Stand like one Approved by God

These verses continue our study in 2 Timothy 2.
14Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers. 15Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. 16But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness, 17and their talk will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18who have swerved from the truth, saying that the resurrection has already happened. They are upsetting the faith of some. 19But God’s firm foundation stands, bearing this seal: "The Lord knows those who are his," and, "Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from iniquity."
Here Paul gives us things to remember. he does so by instructing, reminding Timothy what he needs to remember.
1. Remind his people that this is a charge, an order from God.
a. they are not to quarrel about words....it does no good, it just ruins the people listening.
b. present yourself as one approved of by God. I read those words and I think of how I carry myself when I think that someone approves of me. I've seen it in children. Praise them and they stand just a bit taller. So we are to carry ourselves the same way...as if God approves of us, as if God is saying...well done. We need to have that same attitude and carriage.
c. Avoid meaningless babble. Serioiusly. Let's just stay away from it, what good does it do us? All it does, Paul points out, is to lead people into ungodliness. If we get into ungodliness, then we can't carry ourselves as someone approved of by God. And that's just sad.
d. Paul goes on so far as to point out two people, Hymenaeus and Philetus, as people who have been lost to such talk. They have swerved from the truth and they are upsetting the faith of others.
e. Remind the people, remember that God's foundation is firm. it still stands. The Lord indeed knows who are his. And we need to remember that those who are his, will depart from the sin in their lives. At least they will try! :)

I know, my devotion isn't a real long one this morning, but I think it is clear. Stick to God, remember that he approves of you, LIVE like he does, and if you believe in him, leave the sin in your life, just leave it behind.