********** A Christian Journal **********

Growing in the Spirit of Jesus Christ

Friday, June 25, 2010

June 25, 2010 (day of sorrow)

As we continue to grow we experience ups and downs
in our spiritual life.
The other day I went through one of
those “days of sorrow” - full of anger and doubt…
a “chasing after the wind” mindset.

Depression and self-pity followed.

Allowing the Holy Spirit to regain control,
I experienced remorse for my actions and thoughts.
Counting blessings brought me gently back
to the right path of gratitude and praise.

“When I said, ‘My foot is slipping,’
your love, O LORD, supported me.”
- Psalm 94:18 NIV

Without these periods of sorrow
we would experience little growth
and would be in danger
of abandoning our reliance upon Him…
switching from a life of humility
to a self-centered life of pride.

It also helps to have
an understanding and loving soul mate
growing right along with you.

Here are some quotes I used
the other day in a SonRays devotional.

“Watch your thoughts, for they become words.
Watch your words, for they become actions.
Watch your actions, for they become habits.
Watch your habits, for they become character.
Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.”
- Author Unknown

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.”
- Albert Einstein

Let me share with you a part
of my morning prayers.

Dear Lord,
Please talk to me.
Help me to see Your presence and Your message,
throughout my day, in everything I see,
hear, and experience.
Let me be ever mindful of You…
listening, attentive, and trusting.
Grant me the wisdom necessary to understand,
the desire to pursue, and
the obedience to fulfill
what is Your will for my life.
In Jesus name I pray,

Friday, June 18, 2010

June 18, 2010

This week my wife and I went
to a farmer’s market about an hour away.
It is one of the largest in the area,
and they are open only one day a week.
You find a tremendous variety of fresh,
and imported, fruit and vegetables.
Also there are many meat counters,
bakery stands, and vendors selling
plants, flowers, and other goods.

The day was near perfect.
Temperature was in the 70’s (low 20’s Celsius),
low humidity, and the sun was shining brightly.
Always attracting a huge following,
today the crowd was massive.
The place we choose to park is a bit out of the way
and we usually have no difficulty finding a great spot.
This time, however, we were lucky to find
a space in the corner sandwiched between
an oversized pickup and a tree.
Thankfully our car is small.

If you have ever had the privilege of visiting
one of these markets, yearning for wonderful
things to eat, you know that you end up buying
more than you had anticipated.

It took us over 30 minutes to find our way
out of the complex through the maze of traffic…
but it was worth it.

We are so blessed, in this country,
with an abundance and variety.

Sometimes I think we have too much…
too many choices, too much of a “good” thing.

I get a headache just looking for a particular cereal
at the grocery store… so many different types
and lots of variations of each type.

The problem of “too much” lies in the temptation
of overly possessing or indulging,
and desiring these things
more than our God from whom all
good things come.

And never let us forget others
in their need as we follow
the will of God.

“Do not love or cherish the world
or the things that are in the world.
If anyone loves the world,
love for the Father is not in him.
For all that is in the world -
the lust of the flesh
[craving for sensual gratification]
and the lust of the eyes
[greedy longings of the mind]
and the pride of life
[assurance in one's own resources
or in the stability of earthly things] -
these do not come from the Father
but are from the world [itself].
And the world passes away and disappears,
and with it the forbidden cravings
(the passionate desires, the lust) of it;
but he who does the will of God
and carries out His purposes
in his life abides (remains) forever.”
– 1 John 2:15-17 AMP

Friday, June 11, 2010

June 11, 2010

If you followed the TV series “Lost”,
you are aware of the series finale.
It’s an aptly named series as I, for one,
was lost through much of it.
The show always left you
with more questions than answers.
Not unlike real life… I might add.
A Christian friend once told me
that although he was a believer in Jesus Christ,
he had a lot of questions he would like answers to
once he reached heaven.
If only we would spend as much time
contemplating, praying, and
discussing (with other true believers)
the mystery and enigmas of this life
and our divine purpose in it…
Then again… that is why we have
faith and trust in Him.

I don’t watch a lot of TV,
but this series, for some reason,
peaked my interest.
Here was a group of travelers
from different backgrounds,
each (like all of us),
carrying a lot of excess baggage
(no pun intended).
They, like us, waver between
right and wrong, good and evil.
Although not Biblical in nature,
the series finale was exceptional
in pointing out, that in order
to be forgiven, we must first
learn to forgive.
And in order to “move on”
we must accept that forgiveness
and forgive ourselves.

To do so we become part of the harvest
from a hopelessly “lost” world.

Friday, June 4, 2010

June 4, 2010

photo by Ronnie Benner

“He walked with God.”
How fantastic is that?
To walk with God.

Enoch (Genesis 5:24) and Noah (Genesis 6:9)
are both mentioned in the Bible as walking with God.

So many say that they believe in God
but it is a god of their own making.
Instead of “God created man”
they follow just the opposite…
a man created god.
They want a god on their terms…
a caring, protective, giving god
that is only around when they want him around,
and who will look the other way
when they desire to follow
more worldly, sinful pursuits.

So what is walking with God?

It is to be “ever mindful” of Him.
It comes only through consistent prayer,
daily digestion of the Word,
and obedience to His commands…
all of which is the foundation for
true belief, trust, and faith in Him.
It is the process of spiritual growth.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

photo by Erin Doyle

“No man has a right
to lead such a life of contemplation
as to forget in his own ease
the service due to his neighbor;
nor has any man a right
to be so immersed in active life
as to neglect the contemplation of God.”
- Saint Augustine

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Coming soon...

This site will be a personal journal of sorts containing reflections, past history, current happenings, etc. as I continue to grow in faith and the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Hopefully it will be a blessing to others as much as I am praying it will be for me.