In day to day living, nothing can compare to the spirt man that lies in each of you. Whether it’s observing the smile, the laugh of a young baby, the harsh but wonderful wrinkles of a crippled geriatric, there is amazement, wonder and a sense of perfection in their glow.
There is birth and death and sobbing and joy. There bubbles life with disappointment, victory and job. Even in the sorrow, I see God written all over your faces.
Beyond the cross at Calvary. Beyond the ascension into heaven with His Holy Father, I see Christ inside your hearts and see the purity of spirit of not only of whom we are, but who we should actually be.
In all those defeats, in all those inadequacies of moment, of purpose, in those instances of self-absorption, their remains that remnant, that residue of God.
It is so easy to see in all creation, in architect, in the clouds, the trees and streams. We all recognize this, even the fish that swim in the oceans see it as a natural blessing.
In people it requires more insight, more observation, but God remains inside of them as a beaconing, fiery light.
At times, when God is pushed into the background, we witness mayhem, strife and sin. We witness jealousy, robbery, murder and much, much worse. God remains begging to be revealed.
Over and over again in the Old Testament, we find where man describes God. In that realm, we discover a God that zaps people, one who imposes rules and one who is constantly upset with us.
In the New Testament, as illuminated by Jesus we awaken a different God. This is a God of forgiveness, kindness, forgiveness and one that comforts and assist.
Whenever we also assume that role of Goodness, we also radiate the identical persona. And during those times when you are generous, when you are kind, we you are gentle. I see the identical God in you.
Popular perceptions of people walking on American roadways are that they are vagabonds, crack-heads, and prostitutes and maybe even drug dealers or alcoholics. At the very least, these people are considered miscreants, leeches and losers. The list could grow if we included ex-felons, the homeless and the crazies that wander freely and sometimes madly around our cluttered streets.
Arthur Blessit, the preacher of many years famed for carrying his cross across the entire world, stated that he was never welcomed to stay overnight at a church, but too, never turned away from a bar while seeking shelter.
For anyone who has ever stayed out on the streets such as I have, knows people on the streets are often the most compassionate, loving and unselfish people one could ever meet. Naturally, this is not true for all of them, but most of them fit into this category. One of the rules of the road is that everyone is accepted on the streets. There is no real social status. You are simply a person. No more and no less.
Moreover, on the streets there is no age, no sex, or color. No social boundaries exist. All are equal on the streets.
The barriers of ‘you’ ‘we’ or ‘us’ them’ do not exist among those who dwell in this dismal climate. Too, there is not much thoughts of yesteryear and perhaps also, not much thoughts for the future. There is only NOW.
In reading the accounts of the gospels, we can see not much as changed over the years. I think mostly in the old days, there was simply more poor people then than now. Especially in America. True enough, one might say we have some of the richest poor people in the world living in the United States.
However, there is all types of poverty.
There is all kinds of rejection and surely, the street life is a life of rejection for whatever reason.
Jesus offers a life and family of no rejection. All are welcomed with his kingdom and all are asked to enter freely.
Jesus, a homeless man died as both a criminal and as king of this universe, solely that all might live.
As a street dweller, Jesus knew, understood what it was like to be despised by this world, hated by men.
The good news is that Jesus embraces the rich and the poor. Jesus is willing to forgive all and accept all into His family with our Holy Father.
Truly many good people are in church and very much engaged within it. There are also many good people who are outside the organized church who are also saints with God’s kingdom.
For those who need a family, who need rescuing who need salvation, Jesus is the way. Accept God’s love on this day and enter into the day of salvation. Believe on the name of Jesus and be saved. Thank God, we know he loves us all and shows no respect for titles or status in this world. All who know is voice are considered His children. I would tend to think, many of them are on the streets again.
Back in the 60s a program was put out in the inner-cities to promote good positive self-esteem called “I AM SOMEBODY”. As even a casual observer would know, the program simply didn’t work.
This falls in line more or less with a statement Bill Murray once ranted in his hilarious movie, Meatballs.
In the movie, after giving a personal pep rally to his campers, Bill Murray in his climax renders the fact that even though they can be the best, they can win, they can do almost anything: in the end: still will not get the best girls, or the best prizes etc. For it simply didn’t matter.
In a very real way, the movie was right. No, it doesn’t matter that others will get the cutest girls, the best cars, the riches homes, jobs, money etc. In the end, we aren’t JACK!
The world sees us as something it can use. For most of us in America we are even reduced to a dollar sign as a consumer. Even the rich don’t even, really count if they lose their fortune as we hear about homeless celebrities daily. Once famous, they hit the gutter and no one knows them
The eyes of God are a different matter. King David gives us an interesting, wonderful take on it for he expresses: Psalm 139:14
King James Bible
I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.
Later in History, Christ came to rescue us and saved us while we were yet sinners.
As John 18 3:8 tells us, Christ came down to earth for us because of His great love for us.
His love is so important Jesus told us point blank: “With me, you can do nothing.”
That is really how it is outside the realm of Jesus. We might put on airs and pretend we are someone, but without the cloak of the Holy Spirit through Jesus, are nothing really more than dirty rags.
Standing in front of the world, yelling I am somebody means absolutely nothing. Yet, proclaiming the identical affirmation before God Almighty via Jesus the Christ means everything. We are somebody in that respect because God made us somebody and somebody to worship Him as he gave His Son authority to bring us into His household.
Indeed, with Jesus, you are somebody. You are somebody important and someone to exist forever. That’s how good you are to God.
Isaiah 55:8 teaches us that God’s thoughts are so much higher than our thoughts and then again in Isaiah 55:9 his way are so much higher than our ways.
This should provide fodder than God is not only sovereign, but so much more in control than either you or I can conceive.
As man, we like to think we can teach God a thing or two. We like to believe in our prayers we can inform the Almighty what he otherwise doesn’t already know.
And the true is: in the big picture of it all. We don’t have a clue.
This is where Faith must take over. Christ told us over and over again to have FAITH.
Okay, what must we have faith in?
In this sense, it is an unfathomable belief that Jesus, through His Father, is not only concerned for us all but desires our well being to the most as well. At least here, faith means we must Trust God in all that we do and believe, for the bottom line is: we simply don’t know.
Most people I know are driven nuts with the idea of lack of answers. We want to know if we will get a good job, if we will have good health, or if we are to trust one group of people or persons or another. We simply don’t like searching in the dark—we want answers!
At least in western thought we believe that numbers are the most exact of all our sciences. Those who are the experts among us know that math often falls short in its exactness, leaving us only with approximate guesses.
Jesus is different. Jesus is exact. He says His Father even knows the number of hairs on our head! That is precision. It is exactness! And since our Father even knows something as mundane as our hair count, how much more our needs, our wants and desires?
To put it another way. We really don’t know as much as we think we do. We really don’t know if our defense system is good enough to ward off our enemies. We can’t really count on our health care system for when it all comes down to it-we don’t really know. We simply fail to understand the big picture.
The comforting news in this is that we don’t have to. In fact, we aren’t supposed to. We are to trust God in all our ways. That is what we are supposed to do.
We should trust God for takin g care of not only the big picture but for the small things in our lives. Rest assured that God loves us so much that even the small things to us are big and important to HIM.
Are circumstances in life beyond repair? Are events shaping up where it seems all the forces of this world and nature are against you? Have you been criticized, rejected and abused? Perhaps even your wife, your family and your best friend have tossed you aside and gone their own way. What’s even worse, perhaps you even deserve this treatment. Perhaps you are a jerk, a liar, a no-good, a thief or lazy or useless.
In recounting all those many times you were told that you were ‘no good’ ‘would never amount to anything” or can’t ‘do anything right.” Yes, maybe all of this is true.
Checking your pockets, maybe you can only fumble out some nickels and dimes and are otherwise broke. It could be even you are homeless, jobless, without education, without good clothes or even a clean bath or shoes.
Let’s face it. If all of the above affects you, you are indeed up the creek! Come on. Look at the reality, you are SCREWED! For those who trust in this world, you are hopeless, a lost cause, a leech, a maggot and worse.
Naturally, a teaching like this is useless if it were to be left just like this without a follow-up of hope.
Will this hope give you your job back or your wife, your friends, money, family, or money? No, heck no it will not!
You see, the hope is not in you, the hope lies in Jesus!
In simple terms, call out his name and search for Him. With Jesus there lies hope because of His love for you.
Jesus sees value in you. To Him, you are not worthless, but priceless. You are so valuable He gave His very life to you so that you might live forever!
Jesus cares for you. Jesus asks for you daily. Jesus has so many good things waiting for you, so much so, you have no idea all the wonderful gifts that await you.
Jesus grants access to our Heavenly Father. For as a child of God, we are treated like kings and no longer the worthless sinners we once were.
Again, the value is not within the intrinsic nature of our natural self, it is because of the Holy spirit God anoints us with through His Holy Spirit that we carry with Christ in His church.
This new creature possesses higher value for by our claim to Jesus we are granted entrance into the Heavenly family and His kingdom.
Confess you sins, accept Jesus into your heart and join others in the journey as a true child of God. Go from worthless to most treasured with Jesus.
As parents we are often in the situation with our kids where they are misbehaving. Attempting to maintain patience, we might refrain from correcting them for we want to and hope they will self-correct on their own.
However, once it is determined our kids are not going to self-correct and after about 10-minutes, we lose our composure and scream out a huge and high shrilling STOP!
The point is at this very moment we scream out to stop, we don’t really mean stop NOW, we mean STOP 10-MINUTES AGO!
I think at times God is that way with us. I believe when God sometimes chastens us, we are long overdue for correction and at that point, we weren’t to stop once he comes down with His heavy hand, he meant for us to stop a long time ago.
We can determine this as God is a caring God who is slow to anger and long on patience. And as we know that any parent who cares about their children, surely the parent will correct the child for the benefit of the child.
Of course, no one likes to be corrected. The truth is, we like and at times, insist on our own way regardless how bad the behavior may be for us and to others.
How would it come across, if before you crossing the street, I were to suddenly appear and slap you across your face? Yes, you would be angry, but if subsequent video demonstrated that the slap across your face saved your life from on-coming traffic, you would more than likely be grateful for me having done so.
In like manner, I believe God has saved our lives over and over again. In many of those experiences he probably didn’t slap us in the face to get our attention, but nonetheless HE was there assisting us, stopping us from harm.
Think of the love earthly parents possess for their children and how even much more so God has for us! And if it requires our Lord to yell out again and again and again for us to STOP, then maybe, just maybe we should provide the courtesy to do just that and listen to HIM.
On this day, STOP, get on your knees in Prayer-ask God to save you in the Name of Jesus who died for you on the Cross. Yes, God is calling after you and asking you to stop, stop and stop again, years and years ago.
It takes just minutes to return to your God, the creator that made you through His Son, Jesus, the Christ.
Nobody can effectively argue that worshipping, believing in God based on fact is wrong. We are told to worship our God in truth and in spirit, and facts are there to convince us as to its worthiness and authenticity—its realness!
Yet, Jesus often spoke of matters of the heart. We learn in: Mark 7:21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come–sexual immorality, theft, murder.
Yes, of course these elements also dwelled in our minds, but our minds are not cold and objective. Our thoughts are shaped by our flesh: our desires—the matters of our heart.
Much also can be said for believing with our minds. Yet, believing with our minds is not enough. We are to believe with the entire core of our total being—once again going primarily with our hearts.
So then, we can have the greatest thoughts on earth about Christianity. We can be scriptural scholars and possess all the information, data possible and still be lacking. For true enough we are what we think, we are what we think in respect to what we do as a result of our thoughts.
To simplify this it means we are to engage our total being into what we actually say we believe.
All of this then is manifested in our actions and are judged on the content of their fruit.
The truth be known God does not expect us to be a rocket scientist. This is not a requirement to be a Christian. First and foremost we are to love our God with all our heart, all our mind, all our strength and all our soul and love our neighbor as our self.
Where thought is clearly involved, the greatest aspect is the tangible entity of LOVE. Intelligentsia here is measured not by worldly values, but by God’s values. So then we see here where intelligence is being smart enough to fall into line in obedience with God’s commandments and in actually doing the will of our Father.
And what is the will of our Father? To love as revealed and taught by His Son, Jesus, the Christ.
Following His example is the true test of intelligentsia. How smart are you? Time will tell by what you do.
In Malachi 3:6King James Version (KJV)
6 For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.
The words above and elsewhere in the Holy Bible are indicate of God’s Character than never changes. It is not reflective of being persuaded by people or events.
Even in Genesis 6:6 we can see early in the history of man where God expresses not only disappointment in his creation but that he was sorry he had even created man. This is a far change from where it was indicated in creation of “that it was good…”
The above link is for research that shows God changing His mind 19 times. The list is not exhaustive, but should provide enough biblical evidence where God changed what he thought.
Okay, now that we have established that God can change His mind we also ask: what is that to us?
We can begin with prayer. We can know and be assured when we approach our Father that he has not already closed the book on us, that we can tilt the equation if you will to our favor. This does not mean we can pray and wear God down to the point that he will give in, but insomuch that he possesses great love for us, he wants us to come to him with our problems. This means that our problems are not fixed in stone and that God indeed, has the last word.
Jesus teaches us that our Father is concerned for all our needs and that he wants that relationship with us the same as earthly father and child relationships.
Thank about it: who in their right mind would go to their earthly fathers and ask for something if we thought his mind was already affixed? Of course, we would do it that way.
Naturally, there are times when we have gone to our parents and we did it completely out of ritual for we knew beforehand the answer based on the absurdity of our requests. I would liken this to a boy who say bicycles to school and prays for it to be downhill both ways. Of course, praying for something like this is pure nonsense.
However, for clear meaningful needs, we should approach our Father daily through His Son and ask, crediting our creator as we should for suppling our needs. Yet, here it is not so much about what we ask, but the mere fact we can request something from the maker of this entire Universe and we are granted not only an audience with such a power being, but He is also subject to change His mind in our behalf. What a wonderful God. What a concept. What a reality!
Many are not born into the proverbial beach bunny crowd with glowing tans, comely looks, nor wealth, money or power. Where you may not have bruise marks on you where you were touched with a 20-foot pole, you might be homely enough where you possess a face only a mother can love.
Don’t feel left out for many are in this category as unpleasant to admit or not. A movie named Marty (1955) starring Ernest Borgnine glorified a couple that were almost downright ugly. The movie proved extremely popular demonstrating that many Americans identified with this stigma of ugliness.
The good news is that we are not in isolated company. Isaiah 53:3 states that Jesus was “no form nor comeliness”-“no beauty that we should desire him”-“despised and rejected of men”.
The old adage that beauty is skin deep and ugly is bone deep is dispelled with the knowledge and acceptance of our Lord Jesus for truly any believer knows Jesus is the most beautiful person to ever walk the earth!
Jesus possess a beautify that went far beyond his natural mother. His face was far beyond a mere man, beyond an earthly king, beyond anything ever imagined by limited mortals.
As adoptees of Christ’s kingdom we claim the identical lineage through blood as heirs to His throne. And like Christ or as Christ we also possess eternal beauty that transcends physical (earthy) attractiveness. We possess the personification of Jesus Himself through his Holy Spirit.
My counsel is that those of today have their short term reward, but those of us who await for the rewards of salvation, we have ours that is for eternity.
For all people, but comely or not, we are made ugly to our Father by sin. This true ugliness is a nasty scab-like formation that separates us from a Holy Father.
Turn to Jesus who died on a cross for us, who was dead and buried, who rose again on the third day and now resides in Heaven with our Father. Call upon his name to obtain the pure, true beauty of His sanctification. Free yourself from the shackles of this world and join the Son, Jesus who calls out for you. Amen
This is an interesting question to ponder. For sure, some people don’t like other people. They don’t love them, don’t want to be around them, detest them and rather stay by themselves.
Clearly, people like this are a non-people person should never work around other people, much less become a teacher or caregiver.
Personally, I find it difficult if not impossible to be happy unless somehow or by some way you like people.
More impossible would be in being a Christian. How can you conceivably love your neighbor as yourself if you don’t even like them? I mean like them at all?
So then, it is one thing to be a normal person of the world and not like people, but quite another to being a Christian and not like people. I would tend to think a Christian who doesn’t like or love people is really one very unhappy person.
Truly, I know of some individuals who have been so hurt in their past, they can never seem to muster up enough pathos to gravitate toward others in any meaningful relationship. Because of past abuse we become bitter, sour and contorted in our views about others.
At times, the problem festers so much so that we not only dislike others, but go further and hate them as well.
Naturally, this is not good. The secret, but hard part is to forgive out past and see each day as a new opportunity to learn and to grow. If this were easy, everyone would be doing it, but as a Christian, nonetheless, this becomes our duty.
If the heart is not there, the way to engage ourselves in this activity is to perform it at least grudgingly. We do this with the expectation that if we change our minds, then God, in His great wisdom will, over time, change our hearts.
The end result should be that first begin to like ourselves once again and learn that this new transformation assists us in becoming emphatic, caring people who in turn like and love others. This process requires us taking that big step in changing attitudes. In the end, it becomes a win-win situation. We learn to love as many as possible.