Christians justifying suing each other? Seriously?

Has this Scripture passage become void?

“Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life? If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren? But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers! Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites … (I Corinthians 6:1-9 NKJV)

I am saddened by self-proclaiming Christians suing each other. Does not the bible teach the total opposite? We are not to fight amongst ourselves, we are not to stir up strife, we are actually BLESSED if we suffer wrongfully for our Lord! Yet we demand vengeance and justice as if it is ours to wield. What pride! And here there are self-proclaimed Christians puffed up and taking pride in other believers suing each other. Seriously?! How unlike Christ and fleshly! He suffered wrongfully but He prayed about it, He did not take His accusers to court. Are we not to follow Christ’s footsteps? Who do we think we are? Are we God? Are we not to focus our efforts on loving and building up the brethren, rather than wasting our energy and precious time on costly lawsuits? How foolish! How bizarre! We should be broken over our pride, not cheering each other on because of it!

I pray we as true disciples would follow Christ’s humble example and this truth:

“Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation. Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness— by whose stripes you were healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.” (I Peter 2:11-25 NKJV)

The Mega Church Model is Destructive

The Mega church model is destructive.

It props up a man and helps him stumble.

Jesus said the least of all shall be the greatest, and Paul rebuked the early church for exalting him and other men.

But how many of us do this today?

I’m guilty too. “Oh I go to such and such church with such and such pastor” Instead of just, “I love Jesus and follow Him.”

It’s so dangerous because pride and sin are waiting to devour us and if people are always fawning over you and you’re famous, it comes to a point where you start to think highly of yourself.

And with the mega church mind-set, I think we focus on saving the world so much that we neglect those right in front of us. And when we get so comfortable in one place, 30 years with the same people, we get complacent. The apostles were always on the move. They would stay in one place and disciple the church for like a year or so, building up the saints, then move on to another place. It becomes too routine after a while when we just stay in one spot with the same people. Most of the renowned Christians in the bible were vagabonds.

David fell because he was comfortable at home instead of out on the battle field where it was hard and painful and dangerous. The Christian life isn’t comfortable. If it is, then something must be off.

I think it also becomes a job. You’re paid, you have a work schedule of when you’re going to preach. It’s not like the Spirit leads you anymore. You’ve put Him in a box based on your work schedule.

I think we all have strayed away and have done church in the way we think is best, not the way God knows it’s best. It’s like a business model instead of an unpredictable wherever the Spirit leads model.

Even apostle James said don’t say “tomorrow we will do such and such and go to this place” for you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. It’s a form of pride really. But today’s church is like, “Wednesday night is bible study, Sunday is church service” and that’s the routine and the schedule. It’s not exciting anymore.

I pray we don’t exalt man anymore and just stay humble, serving one another and loving each other. May we not treat one man more special than another for we are all one in Christ.

Please forgive us Father, and revive us, Your church.

Is My Calling Distracting Me From The Call?

*When I speak of our “calling” in this post, I’m speaking about our career or artistic talents.*

Could it be that we’re so concerned with our “calling” that we’re actually distracted from doing God’s will? Isn’t our “callings” just a part of God’s will, but in no way the whole? Isn’t God’s will made plain in the Scriptures? If we abide in and obey His Word, won’t He direct our paths?
Aren’t we commanded not to worry, but instead to pray? Aren’t we taught not to fret, but to simply trust God?
I think sometimes we overthink being a disciple of Christ. Instead of just loving Him and others, enjoying Him and enjoying the fellowship of our brothers in the Light, we get in control-mode and stress over what our calling is. But we shouldn’t let our calling distract us from doing God’s will.

May we be at peace with the fact that in Christ we are significant, that it isn’t our calling that makes us significant. Nor let us think that in order to accomplish God’s will and advance the kingdom we must be walking in our calling. Sometimes it takes years—decades—to begin to walk in your calling. Are you going to just wait for that season and neglect all those God has placed around you to love and disciple?

What matters to God is the fruit we produce. We can work extra hard on perfecting our gifts that tie into our calling, and saving money or studying and planning ahead for that calling, but that doesn’t produce much fruit in the meantime does it?

Me sitting alone at my computer for hours typing my book will produce fruit later, but it very well may get published five years from now, and all the hours I invested in it everyday could have been cut considerably so I can instead love, encourage, and pray for my husband and those around me, or invest in calling a sister and building up her faith. All of our work will be tested by fire in the end, and if what we’ve built turns to ashes, God’s not going to be very pleased.

I want to make sure my husband and those I disciple enter the new city’s pearly gates and receive imperishable crowns.

I’m not saying you become lazy and don’t work on cultivating the spirit of excellence, but I think time is scarce so we must be as shrewd as serpents with what little of it we have.

I don’t want God to play back the reel of my life and then I see thousands of times I was working diligently on my books, but my husband or mother or sister was enduring spiritual attacks alone and greatly needing backup. That will be humiliating and disheartening and I’m certain I’ve already done this plenty of times before.

May we be alert in prayer as the Scriptures command, rather than too busy crafting our gifts.

This I know, we’re all called to make disciples, and we don’t need to write books, lead worship, make films, or be rich to do it. We just need to love those around us.

Agreed?

I’m A Parent Who Encourages My 13-Year-Old To Have Sex

Parents are naive, or in denial.

To allow your thirteen-year-old to listen to sexually promiscuous music, have a boyfriend or girlfriend, permit them to go to their house, video chat with he or she in the bedroom with the door closed, and have a lock on their iPhone is in my opinion, highly encouraging sexual activity.

How can you expect your child to abstain from sex if you don’t do your job as a parent by teaching and protecting them?

Is responding to the issue with, “They’re going to do whatever they want,” really good parenting? Are not children to obey? And if they don’t, could it be possible that you have trained them to get what they want by not disciplining them thoroughly and setting boundaries?

I’m not a parent, but I have taught, taken care of, babysat, and mentored young people for a total of eight years. Though I have yet to have children, I listen to father and doctor, Bob Barnes of Sheridan House ministries on Parenting Today weekdays at 2:45pm to 3pm via ReachFm, and more parenting talks on Family Life Today and other Christian programs, and have observed the parenting of those with highly obedient and well-behaved children. I only share with you what I’ve learned from them and what I know to be true about many teens since I was there and still mentor them today.

I get emails from tempted fourteen-year-old girls. When they’re that young and in a relationship, I always encourage them to stay single and focus on their relationship with Jesus. I tell them not to consider dating (I actually teach on courting), until they’re of age or maturity to begin considering marriage. To be in a relationship before this time is to tempt oneself into sexual immorality. Hormones are blazing and it only takes some affection from your child’s crush to release the flood waters.

So I write this out of love and concern. I hear the tragedies of teen pregnancy and abortion. I know of the STD epidemic. I’m sure you parents do as well.

Please set up boundaries and restrictions for your child until they’re out of your house and on their own. The culture we live in is saturated with sex. Practically every song on secular radio is about dating and having sex. Nearly every PG-13 and R-rated movie have sexually suggestive material, and the magazines your child is confronted with in the grocery checkout isle shout for your daughter to be a sex-guru. Have you read some of the titles? I flip over those magazines and others that have half-naked women on them. But this is the day your child lives in. Sex-messages are everywhere, and that is why you have to be all the more diligent in protecting them.

Do you really want media teaching your children what sex is and when it should be experienced? Public schools are actually having a field-day teaching your children about all the ways they can be sexually active and then passing out condoms like candies.

Please guard over your precious children. They just want someone to look up to, but if you’re too busy or too tired from work to invest time in teaching your children, they will reap what you’ve sown.

To My Beloved Christian Family

Saints, may we rejoice in this glorious truth that I’m about to share with you, my family, whom I love and pray for daily. I pray for each of you to make Jesus supreme in your lives, every day. I pray your faith is grown and strengthened by much reading of the powerful Word of God. I pray the Love and Light of our Glorious King will shine in and through you to those in darkness who encounter you.

I pray you walk in the truth, and do not conform to the pattern of this world, but will continue to renew your thinking by the Word of God so that you may, as the Scriptures say, know what God’s good, pleasing, acceptable and perfect will for your life is.

“Then a voice came from the throne and said, “Praise our God, all you who serve him! Praise our God, all you small and great who honor him!” Then I heard something that sounded like a large crowd of people. It was as loud as crashing waves or claps of thunder. The people were saying, “Hallelujah! Our Lord God rules. He is the All-Powerful. Let us rejoice and be happy and give God glory! Give God glory, because the wedding of the Lamb has come. And the Lamb’s bride has made herself ready. Fine linen was given to the bride for her to wear. The linen was bright and clean.” (The fine linen means the good things that God’s holy people did.) Then the angel said to me, “Write this: Great blessings belong to those who are invited to the wedding meal of the Lamb!” Then the angel said, “These are the true words of God.” (Revelation 19:5-9 ERV)

I pray none of us will become friends with the world, meaning we adopt their ways of thinking and get comfortable here on earth, for we are simply pilgrims in this land.

May we focus on building our palaces in Heaven by serving Jesus with our short time here, rather than foolishly wasting it on building a castle for ourselves here on this land that will pass away. May we do as Paul says in Colossians: set our minds on things above not on things on the earth.

I have faith that God will keep each of you and strengthen you until that day as long as you don’t lose the hope you have and continue in the love you had at first.

This world is getting colder and colder, and it’s icy atmosphere threatens to snuff out our fire of love for Jesus and each other. But may we walk in fellowship and communion with Christ and one another. May we do what Jesus said: love one another, that the world may know we are indeed His disciples (John 17).

May we walk hand-in-hand with one mind and one heart. Together, the gates of hell shall not prevail against us. But if we think we can stand strong on our own, may we be warned by this truth: “Don’t be deceived, bad company corrupts good morals.”

I love you, family. Pick up your swords and fight the good fight.

The Epic Battle of Christian Knights, Midian and Valor

I will die without it. Another slew of a thousand flaming arrows soared overhead as Midian crawled across the desert terrain. Blood-coated dust seeped into his helmet. He breathed in the coppery smoke, his dry throat screaming for a single drop of water.

Leather boots guarded by golden armor appeared on his right. Valor.

“Midian,” he shouted as a mob of Black Knights bounded toward him, “keep going! You’re almost there!” Valor raised a three-foot-sword, its golden blade reflecting the brightness of the sun beaming from overhead. He swung it and decapitated three of his foes.

One of their heads landed in front of Midian. The ebony helmet clanked against the dusty ground and off the beast. Lifeless black eyes and a mouth agape with blood-soaked fangs managed to freeze Midian in his place.

“What are you doing?” Valor impaled a Black Knight and kicked it off his blade before slicing another cursed beast in half. “You mustn’t stop now!”

Midian forced his limbs to crawl onward, wincing as he pushed aside the terrifying head.

His worn tent stood twenty yards away.

He glanced back. Thousands of Black Knights rode in from the south on ebony stallions, racing toward Valor. He could only hold them off for so long.

A fiery barb pierced Midian’s exposed thigh. The flames quickly engulfed his leg and waist. He wailed as he rolled from side-to-side to douse the fire.

A quaking struck the ground.

Midian stopped rolling.

At the tent’s entrance, Leviathan towered a thousand feet high, his crimson scales flaring like his blazing irises. He roared and a stream of fire surged Midian’s way.

Valor leapt in front of him, his golden shield lifted. The armor deflected the raging flames. “Go!” Valor charged at the enemy with his sword.

Midian pushed on, his searing blisters scraping against the dust. Fire rained down like a hellish storm.

Valor dodged and countered the enemy’s blows, leading him away from the tent.

Midian dragged himself toward the small entry. With each move closer, pangs and quivering amplified. His elbows locked, and the little strength he had left seeped out of his limbs like his bleeding wounds.

Slowly, his vision darkened.

A bellowing roar echoed from behind.

The ground jumped, tossing Midian up and then tumbling back down. He tried to blink away the blackness, but it only worsened.

Armored arms swept beneath his torso and raised him out of the dust. In seconds, he descended onto cushions.

A strong hand forced his mouth open, and cool liquid poured inside. It washed over his parched tongue and replenished his weak muscles.

Midian’s eyes opened. His bloody burns had begun to close, and the hilt of his rusty sword rested in his hand.

Again, he had barely survived an ambush.

Valor stood at Midian’s bedside, clutching a crystal canister of sparkling water. His bright eyes peered down on him. “What would have happened if I too had left my sword in my tent?”

Midian squeezed his hilt, shame choking his words.

“I cannot keep fighting without you, Midian. Either you fight with me in this war, or you perish alone on the battle field.” Valor chugged from the canister and marched back outside, the hooves of the Black Knight’s horses fading to silence.
——————————————–

Midian represents the lukewarm Christian, the Christian who forgets or chooses to not read the Word of God daily. Because of which, his only offensive weapon, his sword of the spirit, grows rusty and he becomes weak, parched without the living water of the Scriptures—Jesus Himself.

When satan and his demons attack Midian, he falls and needs the aid of his stronger brothers in Christ to help pick him up again.

Valor, on the other hand, forgets not the Word of God. He meditates on it day and night. He drinks of it daily, consuming moderate amounts before the day’s end. Thus, he is always ready for battle. When the enemy strikes, he strikes back with his all-powerful weapon, the Word of God. His sword is ever at his side and he is able to not only stand for himself, but rescue others who are losing the fight.

The Church needs more Valors. Will you pick up your sword and become a Knight of such value and honor for the kingdom of heaven’s sake?

The choice is yours.

Our War, Our Victory, Our Destiny As Knights For Jesus Christ

I pray for you knights of Christ every day, that you would grow and endure. Please do keep me in prayer also. For these days are only going to get worse: more evil, more corrupt, more saturated with lies.

And that is why we must stay in the bible every single day, multiple times a day, at least day and night. This is our only weapon, soldiers, it is the Sword of the Spirit.

I promise you the battle in the heavenly realm is real! We can’t see it, but we are in it every day! When satan rebelled, it unleashed war in heaven. The arch angel Michael fought and overpowered the devil, and he was thrown out and cast down to earth where he now prowls like a blood-thirsty lion, seeking whom he may devour.

The devil has literal weapons: a bow with flaming arrows that he fires at our heart to defeat our faith. He literally plans and schemes our destruction and downfall and makes bets with God, accusing us, while Jesus sits on the throne and intercedes for us.

So may we not get lazy and let our swords get rusty. I believe our generation lives in the hardest time spiritually. Jesus said the last days would be like the days of Noah, when in all the world, only eight people lived righteously and feared God. May we be part of the few who stand strong upon the firm foundation of God’s Word.

If you ever doubt, or you’re overwhelmed and need prayer, know that you can cry out to God, and you can call on the saints for prayer support. We’re in this war for Christ together! I’m here for you. Again, may this truth encourage you, warriors of Light. May you clap and shout and sing and dance over this astounding truth. Whenever you get discouraged or tired of this life, remember this and look forward to it, for this is the hope, the destiny of those of us who remain faithful to our King until the end!

Then I looked, and there was a large crowd of people. There were so many people that no one could count them all. They were from every nation, tribe, race of people, and language of the earth. They were standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They all wore white robes and had palm branches in their hands. They shouted loudly, “Victory belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.” The elders and the four living beings were there. All the angels were standing around them and the throne. The angels bowed down on their faces before the throne and worshiped God. They said, “Amen! Praise, glory, wisdom, thanks, honor, power, and strength belong to our God forever and ever. Amen!” Then one of the elders asked me, “Who are these people in white robes? Where did they come from?” I answered, “You know who they are, sir.” And the elder said, “These are the ones who have come out of the great suffering. They have washed their robes with the blood of the Lamb, and they are clean and white. So now these people are before the throne of God. They worship God day and night in his temple. And the one who sits on the throne will protect them. They will never be hungry again. They will never be thirsty again. The sun will not hurt them. No heat will burn them. The Lamb in front of the throne will be their shepherd. He will lead them to springs of water that give life. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.” (Revelation 7:9-17 ERV)

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If You’re A Christian, You’re Also A Knight

Saturated. This world we live in is saturated with lies. Lies about relationships, lies about sex, lies about marriage, lies about God, lies about products, lies about science—lies, lies, lies.

And we’re disciples of Christ.

We’re disciples of Christ?

Are we renewing our minds daily, washing away the lies all around us by bathing in the pure water of God’s Word?

This earth and heaven itself will pass away, but the Word of our King endures forever.

Are we too busy to wield our Sword? Are we too tired to grasp the holy hilt and carry it at our side to the workplace, to our school, to our bedroom, to our parent’s house?

We are knights defeated, we who put on our armor, but forget our Sword at home, or leave it at church.

We are dead commanders leading squadrons, we who stand at the pulpit and speak man’s words rather than God’s.

The war is real. The battle begins each morning. Our eyes open, yet our enemy’s are never closed. He wields bow and arrow, shooting flaming barbs at our very hearts, but do we have a golden shield that deflects those arrows of temptation and doubt, a shield that has been wrought from the faith given by God’s Word? Or do we have a shield made of straw that is utterly consumed by those flaming barbs the moment they strike because we have been too busy or too tired to read our Bible?

We creep forward at a snail’s pace on the battle field with quaking knees and feeble hands and no Sword strapped to our hip. All around us, enemies await in ambush with ready weapons, weapons forged thousands upon thousands of years ago, weapons that have slain the greatest men of God in times past.

And there we are. Surrounded and unarmed.

This is reality. This is not a mere metaphor. In the spiritual realm, this is how those of us who do not prioritize God’s Word in our life look: an easy target, ready to be trampled.

But there are others. Legends. Heroes of the faith. They ride into battle on stallions with Swords raised high. The enemy fires many an arrow, desperate to defeat these mighty, but they are too powerful. Their swords slice the fiery arrows in half, and their golden shields deflect every blow. They gather the wounded as the enemy flees, and heal them.

People cheer and shout, with banners lifted, rejoicing in the salvation of these legends, of these victorious.

So there you are. Standing in the midst of the mighty. One of them reaches his hand to you, light gleaming off his golden armor, a reflection of his inner glory. He says, “Come, and I will disciple you. I will train you to be a victorious warrior, useful to our King.”

Will you take his hand?

To see more on how literal this war is; the weapons used, the armor worn, and the battles that have and continue to take place in the realm unseen, check out Matthew 11:12, Ephesians 6:10-18, 2 Corinthians 10:4, revelation 6:2, revelation 12:7-9

I’m A Christian Who Disrespects Authority & Teaches My Kids To Do The Same

Maybe our kids are acting disrespectful to us, their teachers, and elders because we teach them to do that.

Dr. Bob Barnes of Sheridan House Ministries makes a great point: If parents are disrespecting authority, whether that be the government or their boss, i.e. by talking badly about them, talking back to them, being late to work, breaking laws, etc. how can we expect our children to be respectful?

By doing this we are setting an example for our kids to follow: Don’t respect authority, as I myself do not respect authority.

Maybe it’s the way you talk about your father or mother in front of your children. They hear you griping about grandma and grandpa and see the dishonor in your words and then when they act unruly toward their grandparents or Sunday school teachers, you can’t understand why.

Even if the government, our bosses, or parents are treacherous, we are not to speak badly of them for this is dishonoring and disrespectful and it will train our kids to be dishonorable and disrespectful. This does not mean we approve of their wickedness, it means we let God judge them, and in a respectful way, warn our kids not to behave in similar patterns and explain the consequences.

If we have been disrespecting authority, we are displeasing and dishonoring God first and foremost, and we are raising up disrespectful kids who will have difficulty respecting us and others, keeping jobs, and honoring their spouses.

May we all, as Christians—myself included—repent of this sin of disrespect, that we may be blameless before our King, and leave a legacy of respectful children and generations that shine brightly in this dark world—a complete rarity amongst youth in our day and age.

This passage sums it quite effectively:

“Be willing to serve the people who have authority in this world. Do this for the Lord. Obey the king, the highest authority. And obey the leaders who are sent by the king. They are sent to punish those who do wrong and to praise those who do good. When you do good, you stop ignorant people from saying foolish things about you. This is what God wants. Live like free people, but don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. Live as those who are serving God. Show respect for all people. Love your brothers and sisters in God’s family. Respect God, and honor the king. Slaves, be willing to serve your masters. Do this with all respect. You should obey the masters who are good and kind, and you should obey the masters who are bad. One of you might have to suffer even when you have done nothing wrong. If you think of God and bear the pain, this pleases God. But if you are punished for doing wrong, there is no reason to praise you for bearing that punishment. But if you suffer for doing good and you are patient, this pleases God. This is what you were chosen to do. Christ gave you an example to follow. He suffered for you. So you should do the same as he did: “He never sinned, and he never told a lie.” Isaiah 53:9 People insulted him, but he did not insult them back. He suffered, but he did not threaten anyone. No, he let God take care of him. God is the one who judges rightly.” (1 Peter 2:13-23 ERV)