The Presumptuous Ladybug

A blog about Faith, Family, Life....and Anything else

Tag: God cares

God thinks You’re Cool- An Easter Message

Today is Easter Sunday.  As I’ve gone through the activities and celebrations of the day I’ve been thinking about the implications as well.  The concept of Resurrection Sunday, as it is also called, can be hard to grasp.  If I understand Easter as fully as I’m able, it’s even a bit perplexing…

Why would God Almighty go through torture and death for my sake?  Why does he want a relationship with us that badly?

Why are we important to God?

GOD?!

You see I find it immensely easy to remember all the reasons I have been rejected in the past.  All the reasons I don’t quite measure up.

It’s easy to consider all of the ways in which failure and lacking dwell within me.  Perhaps you can relate.

All the ways in which we are not Most Popular, Parent of the Year, Best Dressed, Most successful, Employee of the Month, Prettiest, Smartest…

The list goes on, doesn’t it?

Many of us are more likely to win Frumpiest, Hottest Mess, Clumsiest, Nerdiest, Dirtiest house, Owner of Worst Behaved Dog, Most Likely To Be Forgotten, Most Anxious, Most Spastic…

I mean….why on earth would God want us?

What is more, why would he sacrifice his life for us?  Are we really worth it?  Are we really all that great?

We kinda aren’t.

And yet…maybe we are…

I mean maybe we actually are pretty cool.

We are created in God’s image, we think for ourselves, we have the ability to believe or not believe to choose or not choose.  We can be utterly selfish or totally self-sacrificing.  We have the ability to love deeply and trust totally…

We have righteous potential and somehow God sees past all the crap and sees everything we can be and everything he created us to be; and what he sees are beautiful messes so complicated and so multifaceted that the question moves from “Why love us?” to “What’s not to love?”

We are worth it.

The lie out there is that we aren’t worth it.  That we are too damaged, too fallen, too unlovable, too dirty, to odd, too socially awkward, too silly, too dorky, too ugly, too fat, too dumb…

But…they’re lies.

Lies we try desperately to fight against when we don’t have to.

Who cares what other people think!

The God of the Universe thinks you are pretty awesome!

He loves you, he wants you, he died to prove it.  And, because he is God, he overcame death so that death doesn’t have to hold us back or keep us down.  The Spirit of Death doesn’t need to have any power in our lives.  Our souls can be free if we walk with him; if we say “Yes,” to Jesus.

He thinks you are so great and sees all your beauty, ability, and potential, all he wants is for you to want him back; for the love to be mutual.

The risk was worth it to him.

The risk of rejection was worth it!

That is how deep his love is for us…for you…

“I am the Good Shepherd.  The Good Shepherd lays his life down for the sheep.” John 10:11

“Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.  The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.  Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26

All you have to do is say “Yes.”

“Yes, I accept your gift of friendship.  Yes, I accept you into my life.  Yes, I surrender and will let you be my peace.  Yes, I will let you carry my burdens.  Yes, I am not perfect.  Yes, I sin.  Yes, I need your forgiveness for rejecting you up until now.  Yes, I want you in my life.  Yes, I believe.”

Are you ready to surrender?

“If you confess with your mouth ‘Jesus is LORD,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9

Believe and admit it.  Be willing to speak the name of Jesus.  Don’t hide your belief in him as if you are ashamed of him; that is all that God asks.

If you are ready to accept Christ into your life, don’t wait.  Do it now.  Then, let someone else who believes know and if you have a chance let me know so I can pray for you.

Peace be with you!

 

Egyptian Believers Know the Cost of Spiritual War

The LORD loves them.  The LORD loves his  Egyptian followers.

Sorrow builds on sorrow.  Not everyone is free to worship the way we are in America.  We take it for granted.  We don’t know what we have.

Christian Egyptians paid the price today.  The high price of following Christ in a country where Jesus is not welcome.   The faithful followers there are feeling the sting of death in a war that is both spiritual and physical.

Do we understand the war?

Do we really know the cost of following Christ?

They know the cost.

Jesus said, “You will have trouble in this world.”

And, he is right.

But there is hope because he has overcome the world.

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.” John 16:33

What does that mean when life is so fragile and the hate of other men is rampant and runs free while they take what they can?

God will grow tired of it.  He will bring it to an end one day.

He does overcome, but it doesn’t always look the way we expect it to.

He is moving hearts and his Spirit is blowing through, but don’t make any mistakes…this is war.

This is good versus evil.

This is Life verses Death.

This is God verses Satan.

This is war.

The sad reality of war is that there are always casualties.  But, those who give everything know what they are fighting for…freedom.

Freedom to worship, but even bigger than that, is the fight for the freedom of our souls.

I realize to a non-believer is seems like foolishness.  Is there REALLY a war for our souls being waged?

Yes, there is.

As a Christian I can choose to engage or not.  I can put on the armor of Ephesians 6 and prepare for the battle, or I can disengage and hide my head, bunkered down and afraid.

But God did not give us a spirit of fear.

“For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7

I’m not content to comfortably forget about those suffering around the world for their belief in Christ Jesus.

So, how do we raise our eyes to the hills with determination and fight for Egyptian believers and every other persecuted Christian, with our safe, boring, self-indulgent American lives?

First, we pray.

Then we put on every piece of armor God has given us: Truth, Righteousness, Readiness, Faith, Salvation, and the Word of God.

Then we pray without ceasing.

Pray for Egypt, Syria, and all of the Middle East and Asia.

Pray for all persecuted Christians and those facing any hardship.

Pray for America.

Pray and keep praying.

And gear up, because…

This is war.

 

The Armor of God

“10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” Ephesians 6:10-18

 

Author: Jacqi Kambish

Lament for Syria

My heart is grieved by the recent chemical gas attacks on Syria.  This war has been ongoing and the death toll and horror climbs.  There is no peace and fear is an ever present reality for the Syrian people.  Then the devastation hits their home and families face so much loss that they mass bury their dead and the heartache and pain levels sore.

And the babies…oh the babies and children.

How is such deep pain processed; how can they bare it?

This is NOT God.  This is Satan.

Only Satan would be so cruel and merciless as to attack children and innocent people.

He hates us.  He hates us because we are the image of God, and his work is growing and it is devastating.

My soul laments.

My heart cries out…why?

Why is it necessary?

Leave them alone!

And I’m angry and my heart aches.  A comorbidity of emotions swirling within my chest.

And I want vengeance.

I want Satan to pay for this.

Still…there is solace.

I know that God will have the victory in the end.

I know he will grow tired of Satan’s reign of terror on this earth.

I know that one day God will have his vengeance and Satan will pay.

You may wonder why God has allowed it to continue this long.  It is because he isn’t done with us.  He isn’t done with humanity.  He isn’t ready to call it quits on everything he has made.  I believe he is waiting for the remnant and for every soul to have the opportunity to specifically make a choice to follow him or reject him.  He is waiting for us to decide.

As I am writing the song “Carry Me Through” by Dave Barnes has begun to play on the Pandora station.

There’s a mountain
Here before me
And I’m going to climb it
With strength not my own
He’s gonna lead me
Or the mountain beats me
Carry me through
Carry me through

Oh Lord be gentle
I’m just a man
Please don’t crush me
And help me in

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Lord Sweet Lord
Carry me through.

 And in my sorrow, for all that this world sees, a praise for God raises up from the pit because in this place I know…

I KNOW

God WILL bring redemption.

Come LORD Jesus…Please Come.

And yet…

Don’t come just now because…I don’t want anyone left behind.

I know, and I remember again, that God is sovereign and he knows when to come.  He knows when it is time.  And, it isn’t time yet…

But I trust Him.

I trust him to bring the sorrow to an end when it is time and in that trust there is hope.

And from the depths of sorrow and through tears of a contrite heart, the words from “It Is Well With My Soul” break through.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.

It is well, it is well with my soul

And the paradox of a heart deeply affected by the pain in this world but still fixed on Christ is displayed in sorrowful tears that still sing God’s praise.

Why?

Because I trust Him.

I know he sees things I can’t see.  He knows things I don’t know.  He sees the big picture and he is looking at, and taking into consideration, things I can’t understand or fathom.

I believe that he is good and that because he is good, good will prevail and that good will ultimately win.

So there is trust and praise here in the midst of sadness.

And, an unexplainable peace in sorrow.  I know Who to cry to.

Because God hears us and sees us.

As we face unimaginable evil in this world we can trust that God sees and that he will bring redemption and that he will have his vengeance because he hates this as much, maybe even more, than we do.  This is why he said, “Vengeance in Mine.  I will repay.” (Romans 12:19)

He knows.

He won’t forget.

He is loving, but he is also just.  One day, when it is time, and when God is no longer waiting for us to decide how we feel about him, he will come and the fullness of his wrath will be poured out on Satan and his cronies, and they will deserve every bit of it.

This isn’t for us to decide.  But we can make a choice about which side of the war we want to be on.  I choose God.

I trust Him.

So pray!

Pray for Syria.

Pray for refugees around the world.

Pray for hope.

Pray for redemption.

Pray for peace.

 

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace.  In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  I have overcome the world.”  John 16:33

 

Author: Jacqi Kambish