Archive for December, 2012

Band of Brothers

When I get the inspiration to blog, sometimes I resist it because the topic is too personal, or I feel like it points back to me instead of pointing back to God. I realized something this morning though, and I just briefly want to share it.

 

Psalm 133 talks about how good it is for brothers to dwell together in harmony. Also, the Bible talks about how Jesus sticks closer than a brother, and also how iron sharpens iron. It occurred to me that there is something really, inherently Godly about a brotherhood. Men need brotherhood. So, here is the back story.

 

My family is going through a tough time at the moment. Thinking about it woke me from my sleep before the alarm clock. Now, I’m not one to talk to other people very often about what ails me. I just try and deal with is like a man, which is to say I don’t deal with it. Usually that ends up allowing it to eat me alive. There have been instances in the past, with more frequency since we moved, that I feel comfortable enough to share with brothers in my church, men who share the same faith and passion for God that I do. And even while it’s embarrassing to have to admit failure and weakness, struggle and heartache, it is also cleansing to know that I can share with these men of God, and trust that they will be praying with and for me. So, I get up this morning and grab my phone. I type out a facebook message to these men, and hit send. Now, while I’m washing dishes this morning, I’m still worrying about our situation, but I begin thinking about a Band of Brothers. That was a series on HBO that I never watched, but God really showed me the strength of a brotherhood in just that statement. The bond that brothers share was designed to be stronger than the strongest steel. And when I think about the friends I have had in my life, we could go without talking for years, and then strike up a convo like it was just a day in the recent past. There is a love in a brotherhood that is enduring and refreshing. In a true brotherhood, we should be able to unveil ourselves without fear of guilt or condemnation from our peers. Yes, it’s hard for a man to be transparent, but there is a blessing in being able to just lay it bare before your brothers and let your needs be known. That’s what I did this morning. My wife probably won’t like it, (lol), but I needed my brothers, and I know that they are there for me.  They won’t leave me behind.

 

Men, we need each other. And women, you should strive for brotherhood in your sisterhood, and I hope you know what I mean when I say that. Lol. I just don’t see the need to suffer in silence, praying to God every night, when He has also given us people to hold us up when we feel weak. Cause sometimes, and we may not admit it to ourselves, we feel lonely even after we pray. Our faith is too beaten down, and our spirit is too weak. I don’t think it’s sin to admit that. It’s the truth. It’s not ungodly to confide in those of the faith. The Bible urges it, and we as a church are commanded to bear one another’s burdens. There is blessing and edification in that. And the strength that I feel, even having not heard from anyone that I messaged, is the strength that comes from God through them to me. God blesses us with strength not just for ourselves, but so that we can share with others. There is a verse in the bible that references how the in the new testament church, everyone had just what they needed, and nobody had more than they needed. This doesn’t just go for finances. It goes for the full gamut of the human experience.

 

So, thank you brothers in Christ. Thank you sisters in Christ. Those of you who willingly show Jesus in your relationships and uphold your fellow brother and sister in prayer and support. God bless you. I pray that we all may become that Christ-like in our dealings with one another.

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Until next time, be blessed.

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Getting Out of Your Comfort Zone

“When God Pushes You Out of Your Comfort Zone” Sometimes God has to push us out of our safe place in order for us to experience what we need in order to do what He needs to do. He does this because He loves us. He makes us face the storms, because we grow during them. He makes us face the rough seasons. Matt 14:19-22- he feeds the crowd with 2 fish and 5 loaves of bread. They had 12 baskets of crumbs leftover. Immediately afterwards, He sends the disciples to go before Him to the other side, while He sends the multitudes away. 1. Remember you’re rowing by God’s instructions. Our step are ordered by God. We row because we are obedient to Him. Jesus sent them into the storm. God will sometimes push us right into the storm. God does not always cause our storms, but He is always with us in our storms. We must understand that while everyone else is on the sidelines, God is using the storm to reveal Himself in a better way. Matt 14:33- Peter walks on water, becomes afraid and Jesus saves Him. When they get back to the boat, the disciples now fully recognized Him as the Son of God. The disciples had seen Jesus do miracles, but it wasnt until the middle of the storm until they really saw who He was. This is a revelation that can not come from merely hearing. We can’t rely on anyone else. The only real revelation comes from having a personl encounter with God in our storms. Matt 14:23- after he dismissed them, Jesus went up to pray. He saw the boat and the storm was already starting. Winds were fighting against them. When the wind blows in our faces, and makes it hard to move, KEEP ROWING!!!! Cause God is right there. Just because we encounter a storm doesn’t mean that we have done anything wrong. We have to stop blming ourselves. 2. When you can’t see Him, He still sees you. Mark 6:46-48- Mark’s version. Jesus was on the mountain and saw them straining to row. Even when we can’t see Him, He never stops seeing us. God wants to see if we are still rowing or if we are giving up. The disciples kept straining to row. Many times God just wants to see if we are still willing. 3. When the rowing is rough, pick up some breadcrumbs. Mark 6:52- when the storm stopped, they still didn’t understand the miracle of the loaves. Their hearts were too hard. The miracle was so fresh, but they still became fearful. Jesus had just fed 30k people, but they didnt understand it. We have to pick up the memories of what God has done in our lives, and praise Him for that thing. Find the breadcrumbs and praise Him for it! Nobody understands your breadcrumbs but you. You must praise Him for them. In the hardest times, pick up those breadcrumbs and keep on rowing. 4. Always remember to welcome Jesus on board. Mark 6:48- he saw they were in trouble. At about 3am, He comes to them on the water. He intended to go past them, not get in the boat. It wasnt until they cried out to Him, that He got in. They cried out to Him and He drew near to them. We have to remember to ask for His presence.