Wednesday, March 27, 2013

On Easter, sin, Christians, and marriage

I did not sleep well last night. My mind is reeling with thoughts, scriptures and prayer. I am lead to write this today. It will not make me popular.
 I am tired of Christians crying and complaining that standing up for what is truth is hate. That pointing out a sin and calling it a sin is not showing love. If your child is doing something wrong do you not point it out to them and correct them? Isn't that love? Some have said that this is taking away from the Easter season and what Easter is all about. But I beg to differ. Didn't Jesus die for our sins? How can the lost understand the whole gospel if they don't know what is sinful? Don't we as Christians need to stand on what our beliefs are even if they come with a touchy subject? Yes we are judged by a different standard once we become a Christ follower but do we dilute the truth so that some might be saved? It isn't up to us to save the lost. It is up to us to share our testimony. I am a sinner. I am a liar, an adulterer, a cheater. If I go with my thoughts being the same as the action I am a thief and murderer. I am guilty. The price for my guilt is the death penalty. I praise God for sending Jesus to take my place and to suffer my fate. Being a Christ follower means that I accept that what I have done is wrong. Being a Christ follower means begging for God's mercy and forgiveness, turning around, away from doing that wrong and following Him. Believing that He paid the price. Accepting that I do need forgiveness. This is at the heart of Easter!!!!

No, we are not to convict, for that is up to the Holy Spirit. We are to stand up for the truth.

God's definition of marriage:
Genesis 2:18-25

18 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for[e] him.” 19 Now out of the ground the Lord God had formed[f] every beast of the field and every bird of the heavens and brought them to the man to see what he would call them. And whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. 20 The man gave names to all livestock and to the birds of the heavens and to every beast of the field. But for Adam[g] there was not found a helper fit for him. 21 So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. 22 And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made[h] into a woman and brought her to the man. 23 Then the man said,
“This at last is bone of my bones
    and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called Woman,
    because she was taken out of Man.”[i]
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. 25 And the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.
Ephesians 5:22-33
22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, his body, and is himself its Savior. 24 Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, 26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, 27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish.[a] 28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body. 31 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.” 32 This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. 33 However, let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

Marriage is to be a reflection of Christ and his bride, the church. We were created to be together as man and woman. For those who argue about the separation of church and state I say this, the separation from church and state was made to get the government out of the church. Religious freedom. Not to get the church out of the government. This country was founded on God's principles. If marriage is redefined we distort the reflection. We distort God's plan. Because I believe this and I believe that homosexuality is a sin and I am not ashamed to say that doesn't mean I don't love the person who is a homosexual. Some have said we shouldn't shed light on just one sin. True. Sin is sin and the cost of any sin is death. But as Christians why do we overlook sexual sin? Murderers go to jail. Thieves go to jail. Liars are penalized. They admit their wrong doings ask for forgiveness we should forgive them and show them love. Yes we should even show them love if they don't repent but we tell them that what they are doing is wrong. These days if we even suggest that a sexual sin is a sin or is wrong we are being intolerant. But the Bible says that sexual sin is even worse! 

1Cor 6:18-20
18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin[a] a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

I have also seen the argument that we need to take care of the log in our eye and not worry about what someone else is doing. Why do we tend to overlook the second half of that passage?

Luke 6:41-42
41 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 42 How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother's eye.

Why would Jesus say, "...and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother's eye." if we weren't to do so? Yes we need to work through the Holy Spirit on our faults. But we are also to shed light on our "brother's." Paul even says that we are to judge those within the church:
1Cor 5:9-13
I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church[a] whom you are to judge? 13 God judges[b] those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”
I am not perfect by any means. I am probably one of the worst sinners out there. I have done awful disgusting things according to God's standard. I am made righteous through Christ's death. I am forever changed by His love. I am still a sinner even though I am on the other side of forgiveness. I still do wrong. I am not holier than anyone else. I am forgiven. I am lead by Christ. I am compelled by the Holy Spirit to speak the truth, to shed light on what is sin, what is wrong. This is a fallen world. This is a sinful world. I long for the day that Jesus comes back and we are rejoicing with Him. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

My New Business

So I started a new business. I am excited about it but also scared. I have tried a home based direct sales business before and failed. I love the product that I am selling and I am eager to share it with everyone but I don't like calling people and I get frustrated and discouraged easily. 

First, let me tell you about my business. I am an Independent Consultant with Blessings Unlimited. What is Blessings Unlimited? It is a direct sales company founded in 2006 by DaySpring, Inc, which is the leading producer of Christian cards and gifts. DaySpring is part of Hallmark Cards and has partnered with Christian retailers for 40 years. Blessings Unlimited name is based on John 1:16 "From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another."  On my personal website I have written out my why, why I decided to join and sell these products. Here is my why: 

I learned about Blessings in 2012 through a friend’s gathering. I fell in love with the product and the mission of the company. My husband and I also have been praying for several months about how I can earn extra income but still allow our daughters to be involved in their after school activities. After much prayer we decided that Blessings Unlimited was the direction God was taking me.
Deuteronomy 6:4-8 says, "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."
The products offered by Blessings Unlimited are encouraging and inspirational. They are a great way to impress God’s truths in your home. I hope you enjoy browsing my website. Please let me know if you would like to receive a catalog or host a Gathering. As a host you can earn valuable discounts and enjoy time with friends and family while sharing the gift of faith.

Our Mission Statement: To pursue the heart of God and bring blessings to others. How great is that! 

My prayer today is that God give me the courage to do what it takes to work my business so I can be successful. That I will earn money to help pay our bills. That the message based products become a blessing in my friends lives and their friends lives. That I can boldly proclaim Jesus' love to others through my business. That people are willing to open their homes up to host a gathering so I can share God's Blessings to their friends and family. I also pray for those who would become partners with me in this awesome business. 
Lord, guide me in my business. This isn't my business but it is Yours. Steer me in the way You wish me to go and I trust that You are in charge. Thank you for Your blessings. Give me wisdom in operating my business and in my day to day walk with You. In Jesus Name, Amen

I invite you to check out My Blessings Unlimited website.

Friday, March 1, 2013

A Crazy Thursday

Yesterday was a crazy day. The craziness in my house doesn't start until people start coming home, which happens around 3pm when the girls get off the bus. Both girls had to be somewhere at 4:30 in different places and in different states so I had to do some manuevering to acheive this. I ask my dear hubby to change his schedule so he could take our beautiful 17 year old to a local photographer for an interview. They had an opportunity for 2014 seniors to become models and earn their senior pics for free plus get cash for referrals. I like the thought of that! I needed to take our younger daughter, Kat, to the dentist up in Maryland to have a tooth pulled. She is 14 and still has some baby teeth. We have been waiting for the baby teeth to go away so she can start braces.

At 2:50pm I get a text from Kat. She wants to stay after school for African Dance & Drumming. SO I say yes but tell her to be out at the doors no later than 4pm. Rebecca comes home and gets ready (which seems to include going through my make-up drawer.) I wait until 3:50 and start to go out to get Kay and Jay comes in so I say hi and give him the run down of where he needs to go. 3:55pm Kat texts me, I am outside. Stress. I text back OMW and get in the van. On the way there Kat keeps asking is it going to hurt? Will he have to give me a shot? Can't he give me the gas to knock me out? I try to reasure her that he knows what he is doing and he will make it as pain free as possible.

We get to the dentist and we are quickly taken back to the room. Numbing gel is given and the dentist gives her two shots. The tooth seems to come out okay but he is still digging. At this point she is holding the dental assistants hand with a death grip. Then I come up and she squeezes my hand. I am wearing a pretty purple shirt and my hand turns the same color. Meanwhile he is still digging for a root that the xrays didn't show. He gives her two more shots because she is moaning. For awhile there are two dental assistants and the dentist and me all staring into Kat's mouth while the dentist is digging around trying to get the pesky root. My hand is still very purple. What was supposed to be a very simple tooth extraction has turned into a 20 minute dig for a loose root and a very scared 14 year old. She made it through and so did I. Both the assistant and I tell her that she did a great job and reassure her that this won't happen again.

Driving home still in MD my hubby calls. I don't have a blue tooth so I ask Kat to answer it. She has gauze in her mouth and half her mouth is numb so she says, "herrow." At this point they are laughing at her and her dad asks, "are you still getting your tooth pulled?" She is like, "No? Why woulb I anper the pone?" Finally back in WV and I take the phone from her. Rebecca got the model job!

We get home and read the post extraction instructions. She can't spit or swallow. She asks, "what am I posed to do?" I tell her to drool into a cup. The instructions also saythat she can't drink alcohol for 6 days and she can't smoke for 8 weeks. She gets a kick out of that. I tell her it better be much longer for that. She can only eat soft foods and she cannot drink for a straw. So to lift her spirits up we go get chicken noodle soup at Chick-fil-a and a smoothie at Tropical Smoothie Cafe. (She has to eat the smoothie with a soup spoon.)

I love my family and I am blessed to have them in my life. I also like the fact that our days are not boring. Though sometimes I think boring would be nice every once and awhile. :)