Sunday, February 24, 2013

the LORD will provide.

the sermon today was on the eighth commandment - 'you shall not steal.' and our pastor challenged us with these questions:
     - are you a thief?
     - do you see what you want and covet? do you take what you want from others?
     - do you ever treat others without the respect and honor they deserve as children of God?
     - do you glorify God according to the way He deserves to be treated?
     - God gives good things to His children, we must respect His wisdom and judgment.

What stood out to me the most from that section was this:
"We need to think of ourselves as stewards, rather than autonomous owners." 
Instead of the materialistic "I need this, I need that" mindset that our culture promotes and embraces, it's important for us as Christians to realize that our treasures are in fact in heaven - and we should use our material, earthly possessions to further the Kingdom and store up the right kind of rewards.

Christ came to fulfill the commandment by living the sinless life. He never stole from anyone - possessions, time, etc. He never slandered (stealing someone's reputation), or gossiped (stealing their right to privacy) or anything else along those lines. He came to redeem and save the thief. I nearly cried as Pastor Keith read Luke 23 - the thieves on the cross with Jesus. Christ came as a GIFT for the thieves who He knew would reject and kill Him.

And then, by way of application, some challenging questions from Christ's teaching on material possessions.
     - Do we trust God to provide for our needs?
     - Do we trust that He is generous and DOES give good gifts to His children?

Also, when we DON'T give back to God what He has given us, then we are forgetting the resurrection and the hope stored up for us. What holds us back from giving back to God? Do we truly believe that there are treasures to be had in heaven? Because ultimately, giving back to God is based on faith. How often during the day do we stop and just thank God for what He's given us?

to close the service, we sang this wonderful song, 'the Lord will provide.' a beautiful reminder of how good and great our God is.
Though troubles assail and dangers affright,
Though friends should all fail and foes all unite;
Yet one thing secures us, whatever betide,
The scripture assures us, the Lord will provide

We may, like the ships, by tempest be tossed
On perilous deeps, but cannot be lost.
Though Satan enrages the wind and the tide,
The promise engages, the Lord will provide.

When Satan appears to stop up our path,
And fill us with fears, we triumph by faith;
He cannot take from us, though oft he has tried,
This heart-cheering promise, the Lord will provide

No strength of our own, or goodness we claim,
Yet since we have known the Savior's great name;
In this our strong tower for safety we hide,
The Lord is our power, the Lord will provide

When life sinks apace and death is in view,
This word of his grace shall comfort us through:
No fearing or doubting with Christ on our side,
We hope to die shouting the Lord will provide
"the Lord will provide" - matthew smith
hope y'all had a blessed Sunday, and that every starts the week off fresh and full of energy to serve the Kingdom tomorrow! I'm a big fan of happy Mondays.

With love and hugs and blessings,

your jo-girl.

p.s. and here's to Les Mis winning a handful of Oscars tonight! *grin*

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