The 100th Day

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Today marks the 100th day of 2017.

Yes we only have 265 days left in this year…

Crazy right?

At the beginning of this year I started reading through the Bible chronologically using the YouVersion app’s Chronological reading plan.  I have always enjoyed reading throughout the Bible this way.  When I started on January 1st –  I thought that on the 100th day I would write a blog about the passages I read on that day.  (I often read ahead so the 100th day of reading isn’t always the 100th day in the reading plan).

The set of passages I read on this 100th day was 2 Samuel 5:11-25, 2 Samuel 6, 1 Chronicles 13, 14 and Chapter 15.  These are sections of scripture where we find King David on his throne in Jerusalem, he is building himself a house in the city and he is defeating the Philistines by following God and His instructions.  It is amazing to me how influential the leader of a country can be on the spiritual direction of a country.  David is leading his people to God to the best of his ability and they are following him. At least a huge majority of them.

I am praying today that God will raise up a president of the USA like King David, that will be devoted to following God with all his heart and lead our country back to Him.

(I am not saying anything about President Trump here, I pray for him on a daily basis that God will give him the wisdom and knowledge he needs to lead this country effectively.)

Second – this is also the passage that Uzzah lost his life when he reached out and prevented the Ark of the Covenant from falling off a cart they were transporting it on.  This seemingly innocent act was in disobedience to God’s command to not touch the Ark.  But it goes further than that,  they were transporting it incorrectly as well. The good intentions of David and the people in bringing the Ark to Jerusalem and celebrating the Lord and His goodness was hindered from reaching the throne of God because of their disobedience to God. A disobedience that was the result of their ignorances of the Scriptures.

There are several lessons form this story,  first and foremost God is serious when he says something is wrong or right. He is serious when he tells us we should live a certain way and do things a certain way.  If we decide to do things differently (out of ignorance or on purpose) and  seem to be getting away with it, we need to keep in mind there is a good chance that is not the case.  God is Holy… Yes He is gracious and merciful but He is equally as Holy.

Second – studying scriptures to understand how God wants us to live is of key importance.  Yes doctrine is important but if we only study the Bible to learn the facts about doctrine we are missing out on how God intends for us to live.  God desires obedience above sacrifice, and obedience is an action not a theological concept you have learned.

(Again I am not saying doctrine is not important – it is. How you live is more important however, than how much you know.)

Third – King David was a leader who learned from His mistakes.  He was able to repent and adjust.  In life King David did not make many mistakes, the majority of the time he followed God with his whole heart.  David corrected his mistakes by confessing his sins and conforming to what God said was right.  We need to have this same attitude, that when we mess up, we resist the temptation to make excuses for our actions, we resist the temptation to argue or prove to ourselves that what we have done is right or the exception to the rule that God has written. Instead we determine in our hearts and minds to admit what we have done that is wrong and change to the way God wants us to live according to His word.

So there you have it… Words from scripture on this 100th day of 2017.

WOW… that last sentence sounded Royal….

Easter Playlist

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As you know this is the week before Resurrection Sunday, often referred to as Passion week.  Here is an “Easter” playlist my family will be listening to this week as we celebrate the sacrifice of our Savior Jesus Christ on the cross of calvary and His Resurrection from the grave.

Click Here for the List – > Easter Playlist

If you have any songs to add please comment below.

The sad life of Deuteronomy Chapter 1

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The Grace and Mercy of God are amazing things and are more abundant than our wildest dreams.  It is sufficient to cover our sins and keep us in step with God.

But what happens when a group of people continually rebel against God over and over again?  Does Grace can Mercy still cover them?

Yes, it does.

However continual rebellion towards God, a continual “I’ll live like I want to” knowing that it isn’t a way God would have you live, or living with a lack of faith by not pursuing what he has called you to do has consequences that are still Gracious and Merciful  but prevent you from achieving and receiving the goal God has set before you to accomplish.

Sometimes people never achieve their full potential in Christ because they fail to believe and pursue God’s will with everything they have and every ounce of faith they could have mustered up.

The children of Israel – a certain portion of them anyway. Never made it in life to where God intended for them to be.  Their lack of faith caused them too fall way short of God’s vision for their lives and they missed out on the blessings God desired for them to have.

Sad…

This is a sobering lesson.

Change

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My son is an awesome great kid.  Here lately he has been focused on getting into early college and has been very serious about it.  We were not sure why he was pursuing this with such vigor until one day after school his mom asked him.

“Why do you want to go to early college?”

His answer

“Well, if I go to early college that will take 2 years off of my college time.  Aurora will graduate my first year in college then I will graduate from college the next year and we will all be back living at home.”

Then Nicole explained to him how life worked, Aurora will probably be getting married and he would be well on his way to making that commitment. Pursuing your careers.

This revelation was shocking to him…

Here lately I am seeing my daughter less and less.  This was ok during Marching Band Season but now she has a boy friend and goes on dates with him.  This weekend she went on a date on Friday evening, was home by 8 but immediately did homework for the rest of the evening.  Saturday she went to a life guard recertification class, came home and did homework. Sunday we went to church, out to eat and then she did homework and watched a TV show she has gotten into here recently and then read (for homework) and went to bed.  Today I saw her for maybe 5 minutes this morning and here we are.

Things are changing and it doesn’t take a prophet to let me know where this is heading.

Things are changing and I’m playing catch up and adjustment.

The days of being able to fully protect her and have her around all the time are coming to a close.

And my son is not far behind.

I am thankful that these changes are the normal changes that life brings our way.  My children are healthy and are doing what they are suppose to be doing.  Its just an odd experience seeing them become more independent and seeing them less and less at the same time.  It is at this point I am glad Nicole and I adjusted our social life to include them in what we did.  They were rarely left with baby sitters and even today we do not leave them at home alone very much. We choose to make the most out of every moment with them because we know one day they will no longer be with us and those days would come quicker than we would want them too. As time progresses you see your children less and less – thats just the way of things.

I know this is an odd post, but it is what I have been thinking about here lately…

Job Perception

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There are people who rewrite your story to match their perceptions of you and events that have occurred. (Some people rewrite their own story but thats not what the post is about). I am sure that most of the people who will read this have been on the receiving end of a rewrite about their lives that just wasn’t true.

Job was no different.

In the midst of his pain and agony his three friends strove to make him out as the villain citing his suffering as proof of their inclinations. One friend went as far to rewrite Job’s testimony and painted a bad picture of Job that just wasn’t true.  In doing so he attacked Job’s character and made Job out to be something he wasn’t because his friend would rather change Job’s story to match what he thought of him than change his perception to see the person Job really was.

I have had this happen to me more than once, and for some of you you have experienced the same thing.  People say things to you with smiles on their faces and with sweet caring countenances  that are untrue and hurtful.  Their self righteousness bleeds a stench that brings another level of suffering to your soul.

I am amazed sometimes at the lengths some people will go to beat you down with a smile. Just so they can keep their misperception of things and not be the ones who need to change.  Even if they have to rewrite your story to match what they believe they will do it in a heart beat just to win their petty argument.

This is what Elphaz did to Job (22)

But Job would have none of it (21 and 23-24)

So – Don’t believe the lies.  Don’t accept the rewrite  (yours or someone else’s).  From the start of the book of Job we see he was very serious about confessing his sins and making sure others had in his family.  From his words he had examined what he had done in his life and knew he had lived righteously.  He did not make up stories about himself and he did not make up stories about other people and he sure wasn’t going to accept a fictional rewrite even if it came from one of his friends.

We shouldn’t either.

There will always be people who show up in our lives from time to time and degrade us and rewrite who we are to match their perception of who they think we are. Do not fall into the trap of believing what they are saying about you.  Yes, you will feel bad but do not allow those feelings to lead you to acceptance of their fictional story about you.

 

 

Job

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I am not sure, (and really don’t want to find out) if I could have handled all that happened to Job in the first 2 chapters of the book.  It is remarkable that he remained faithful to God during those tough times.

He also didn’t say anything about what had happened to him for 7 days.  I complain sometimes immediately when things in life do not go the way I think they should or when they go sour.  Truthfully, the complaining time is often short lived and then I move forward attempting to navigate through the problem only finding that the desire to complain about things sneaking back up on me and I have to deal with that desire once again putting it away and seeking forgiveness for the bad attitude I allowed it to produce inside me.

Job had the right perspective from the start.  Even when he breaks his silence he only talks about the pain and makes verbal expressions about how he feels.  There is no attack in his words toward God or people, only expressions of the pain he feels inside.  He knows that God has a purpose in his calamity and at a spiritual level he rests in that fact.

Could you rest today in the knowledge that God has a purpose in what you are experiencing whether good or ill – painful or amazing?

If Job could do it, there is no reason why we couldn’t do it as well.