You’re a Liar, I’m a Liar – Here’s Why…

Whether we care to admit it or not, we are liars.
Go ahead, soak it up, take it in…
Some of you are probably offended by this accusation.
Some of you might be nervous – don’t be.

The Lies 
The biggest lie that we tell ourselves is this:  “I don’t need God.”
The second biggest lie that we tell ourselves is: “every thing is okay.”
And then there are those lies that we tell God – “Lord I promise if you get me out of this situation I will never do that (insert whatever “that” is here) again!”  Or, we go to the altar at some fancy big church event and confess our sins in a big emotional altar call and make promises that only last that weekend…in essence we lie because deep down we know we don’t plan on changing.
lies
We also lie to God by telling Him that He’s the only God in our lives, but let me ask you, how many hours a day do you spend on the internet or on social media?  How many hours a day watching tv, netflix etc…?  Are there other things that consume all of your time?  Are there things that you would shamefully admit that you’re obsessed with?  Now, there’s nothing wrong with any of this stuff, but when we spend hours and hours and hour a day gaming or web surfing or whatever – we have become consumed, and when we become consumed by something other than God – we have essentially set up idols to false gods in our lives.  Basically, whatever takes the place of God – becomes our god…and we are then liars who claim we know God, but rather, we only know of God.

1 John 1:8-10 says; “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.

God Doesn’t LieGod
What God says – He means.
What He says He will do – He will do.
God doesn’t break His promises to us – We are usually the ones who break our promises to Him.  Do we need Him?  Absolutely, and yet our ego at times convinces us that we can go it alone and we don’t need Him to “interfere”.   Don’t lie to God, He’s not fooled.  Also, don’t lie to yourself!

stopStop The Lies
So what’s the point?
Do some soul searching in your life today.
Be humble,.in other words, put yourself low, look hard and deep at your own life right now – without any sugar coating or facades (which are lies that you have told yourself).

– Another lie we might hear in our minds from time to time is this:  “I am not good enough to be called a Child of God, (or to be called a “Christian”)” We might buy into that lie because of guilt and shame, but God’s grace through Jesus Christ can remove that guilt and shame completely – making us totally covered by grace and completely forgiven!  Don’t buy this lie anymore!!  God loves you, and He wants you to know how valuable you are to Him!

We tell ourselves a lot of lies…and sometimes we start to believe them.
We also try and tell God lies too…but we aren’t fooling Him, He knows.

honestBe Honest.
Allow the Lord access to every part of your mind today…even the spaces in the recesses of your mind that you are ashamed of.  He already knows, but we have to let Him in and allow His light to shine onto those dark, shameful places in order for healing, true healing to take place.  Admittedly, this is a work in progress for all of us.  There will be times when we lie, or believe a lie in our minds again.  But the next time that happens, recognize it and within that recognition, plot and strive to change that behavior.  Ask God to help you in those moments!  True sincerity and admission/penitence moment by moment allow us access to God, and it also provides us with tangible spiritual growth.

prayPray.
Lord, I confess my lies to you today.
Lies that I have told, and the lies that I have believed about myself.
I am weakened by these lies, but I know that with your strength I can be whole again!
Walk beside me today Lord, reveal to me the moments of my dishonesty to you and to those I come in contact with.  Convict me when I live double-mindedly.  Lord, I do not want this barrier to remain between us.  I know this has stunted my spiritual growth, and I desire to be closer to you.  Lead me Lord, I desire to give all there is of me to you – even those spaces in my life and mind that I am ashamed of.  Wash me clean again.  -Amen.

Something more to Ponder today.
To God be the glory!

4 “Christian” Phrases That We Should Stop Saying!

Let me set the record straight before delving into this list of four things Christians should stop saying.
I am not bashing Christians, or Christianity here.
I honestly think the phrases below (and many more) have already done enough damage.
Millennials  (and most other generations) want authenticity when it comes to the topic of spirituality and faith.  Pumping out cliche’ after cliche’ will not help bring your genuine faith into focus, it will only make it harder for others to accept.  I’m pretty sure none of us want to be labeled a phony…but we probably could name some along the way through various experiences.  That being said, let’s stop “playing” church and start living for Christ.  Let’s stop harping on other people and start focusing on our own issues.

4 “Christian” Phrases That We Should Stop Saying: 

1.  God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.  handle
I’m sorry, but does God really give us problems in life?
Sure, He can send us to some very difficult places like He did with the Apostle Paul and the other disciples, but does He really afflict us with “stuff”?  Is that what this phrases is all about?  The fact of the matter is that life, especially to a Christ-follower’s life, WILL be difficult from time to time.  The Apostle Paul doesn’t say “Hey guys, things are going great and God hasn’t given me more than I can handle…”  No!  He talks a lot about finishing the race, perseverance, persistence, and difficulties.  Next time you think about uttering this phrase please think it through.  Perhaps life has thrown curve balls at us now and again, but God will provide us the strength to make it through.  Sometimes life IS more than we can handle, so don’t “sell” something that isn’t always true!

help2.  God helps those who help themselves.
This phrase honestly is my #1 pet peeve.
People sometimes fire this verbal artillery shell towards people who seem lazy or poor and unwilling to work.  I have found this phrase to be detestable when used in this fashion.  It’s judgmental.   It’s ignorant…and it’s wrong.  Please find that passage in the bible…It’s not there.  The phrase was actually made famous by Benjamin Franklin’s book Poor Richard’s Almanac in 1757, but in actuality is attributed to Algernon Sydney in 1698.  God in fact does help those who can’t help themselves.  Isn’t that, after all, what Christ demonstrated in His death on the cross?  “While we were still sinner (helpless), Christ died” (Romans 5:8).

In Jesus’ ministry, He often took pity on those who could not help themselves.
If we are to emulate Christ in every way shouldn’t we do likewise and in so doing ditch this erroneous “Christian” phrase?

3.  Name it and claim it! name
“If you believe hard enough, it can be yours”
“If you pray hard enough for money and that new car, it can be yours…you just need to name it and claim it”…um NO.
Such “name it and claim it” philosophies are just flat out wrong.  I should clarify that Jesus does say “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (Matthew 17:20), but the “Name it and claim it” philosophy takes this scripture completely out of context.  What is the purpose behind our faith and our convictions?  Is it to please God?  Is it to do His will?  OR Is it so we can afford nice stuff, and have lots of money?  There’s nothing inherently wrong with money, but if it becomes the thing we worship and in so doing we start “naming and claiming” things just get what WE want, then we have lost sight of God.   Stop naming and claiming stuff.  It’s not about stuff.  It never was.  If that’s all we do with this phrase, please, please stop!  

happens4.  Everything happens for a reason.
Another misquote of scripture is to use this: “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven–A time to give birth and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.…” Ecclesiastes 3:1,2.  This phrase sometimes goes right along with “God won’t give you more than you can handle” as sort of an excuse for when it does become more than you can handle.  Just chalk it all up to “well everything happens for a reason”, or (and here’s a twofer) “well maybe it just wasn’t God’s will“.

Truth: Sometimes life has no rhyme or reason.  Sometimes thing just happen and it wasn’t in God’s plan.  I don’t want to get too theological on this pondering today, but I don’t believe everything is controlled 100% by God.  This is where free-will comes in.  This is where life comes in.  People make choices, both good and bad.  People unfortunately die for no fault of their own and I find it extremely hard to say that innocent people died because it was all according to God’s plan or that “Everything (including their death) happened for a reason.”  Not that’s not the same thing as God can make something beautiful out of horrible situations, because I do believe He can…but we just can’t go around chalking everything up to it happening for a reason.  Sometimes there just isn’t a good reason.

These are just 4 Phrases that we should stop saying.
I know that there are more, and I know that not everyone will agree with me.
But, for what it’s worth, here is something more to ponder today.

God Bless You!

Finding Hope

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Sometimes it’s a hopeless world around us and all anyone can seem to do is just survive.

                                                             I don’t want to merely survive,

I want to bloom and grow and thrive in the place(s) that God has placed me.

                                                            Sometimes though I think that we all can just sort of settle for the “just good enoughs”.

I’m not talking about materialism or stuff but about our life circumstances and our hopes and dreams….

you see

 

when we were just kids

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We dreamed.  We welcomed imagination.  We hoped to become, and in that becoming the sky was the limit.  

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We weren’t weighed down by endless doubts, or the “not good enoughs” or the “I can’ts”…

 

 

we just imagined and dreamed big dreams…

 

 

 

                                                                                          but

 

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over time…

 

we started to believe what others thought about us.

 

over time…

we bought into the lies that this world told us.

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over time…

we accepting the truths of the fallen, instead of the truths of the risen.

 

So, for just a second, will you accepted this breath?

Will you accept this gift of hope again?  

 

Will you take these written words to heart…

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and believe again? 

 

 

 

Here is the hope that I have for you for me, for us 

 

today…

 

 

 

 

This is what I know HOPE to be: 

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H.elping us

 

O.pen our eyes to the 

 

P.ower of 

 

E.ternity 

 

 

This isn’t something readily accepted.  This isn’t something generally practiced…even though flowery speeches and whole sections of bookstores are devoted to “self-help”…they can fall short.  

Hope lifts our eyes.

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Helps us see beyond what this earth

has taught us to know.  

When we can begin to look up, accept divine help…

our eyes can become truly open to the possibilities again.

The power

God’s power, brings us closer, 

                        so much closer 

to the way things were created to be 

                               in the first place. 

Don’t be limited by your hopes and dreams…find hope…

                                                                                         and….

 

                                                                                                     let it….

                                                                                                                  set…

 

                                                                                                                           you…

 

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