Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Our God is a Matthew 6 God - Part 3

My stomach growls as I go on hour three. "God, please be with me in this fast. Show me what you have for me and what direction I must take." I grab my water bottle in hopes that its contents will quench my thirst and quiet my protesting stomach.

And, I'm only on hour three.

Fasting is not my favorite thing to do. I think I worry about it too much. I worry my blood sugar will drop, and I'll get dizzy. I worry that I'll be nauseous and miserable. I worry that my stomach will growl so loudly that God and everyone will hear.

Why do I bother to worry? Who knows. It's what I do.

For some reason, I feel that God didn't intend for it to be this way. Why are we predisposed to worry? To worry about everything. From what we are going to wear tomorrow to how the bills are going to be paid, no matter how big or how small, we worry. But, in Matthew 6, God so loved us that he laid it all out. An outline of how to be, of how to pray, of how to give all of cares and worries to our loving Father. He truly loves us. Oh, how He loves us!

This week, let's focus some more on fasting, and how God intended it to be.

Matthew 6: 16-18 says...

16"When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show men they are fasting. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 17But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18so that it will not be obvious to men that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

From my study of Matthew 6, I've learned one thing about God. He created us to worship Him and truly wants it all about Him. His glory. His kingdom. He created us to worship Him and proclaim His glory to the nations. He did not put us here to crave approval from our friends or co-workers. He put us here for His glory -- that is where the reward is. He repeatedly says throughout Matthew 6 that our reward is in heaven, not on earth. He reveals to us through this chapter how to act, what to do, and what our reward will be for obedience to Him. God made it so easy. Drink in His words this week. Drink them in and invest in your future in the Kingdom of Heaven.

To be used by Him,

Chelle and Be a Barnabas

Monday, June 8, 2009

Movie Night this Friday at VLC Waco


Friday Nights Lights will host a weekly Family Movie Night at VLC Waco each Friday through the summer. Meet at the gym behind the church at 7 p.m.

This week's feature will be Love Comes Softly starring Catherine Heigl and directed by Michael Landon, Jr. The movie is based on the popular Christian-fiction series by Janette Oke. I've seen this movie and love it! I can't wait to see it again surrounded by all my friends.

See you on Friday!

Chelle :o)

Our God is a Matthew 6 God - Part 2

Prayer. For some of us, it flows off the tongue shaking the foundations of heaven. But for others, we get stuck, or maybe even think too much about it. In this week's scripture, Jesus tells us exactly how to do it. How easy is that? My comments are in blue.

Let's break it down:

Matthew 6:5-15

5And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

~Once again, Jesus addresses the "heart issue" behind our actions that we spoke about last week. Are you praying to touch the heart of God, or are you praying to be heard, to feel important, or to show others how smart you are?

6But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.
7But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
8Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

~Matthew 6:8 is one of my favorite verses. He knows my needs even before I know them. And, I need a lot. LOL Or at least I think I do. He knows my every need. He knows I need food. He knows I need shelter, and he knows what clothes I like to where. Dad is so good! And, he always knows what's in style.

The next section is the best part! It's all about prayer and Jesus lays it all out. No parables. No tests. Jesus even says "this is how you do it"! How easy is that!

9After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
God is GREAT! Always praise Him first regardless of the situation.

10Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

God may your will be done on earth in my life just as your will is always done in heaven.

11Give us this day our daily bread.

God, you know what I need even before I need it. Please provide for me what you feel I need.

12And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

Lord, please forgive me of my sins. I'm sorry. I will forgive others as you have forgiven me.

13And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Lord, please keep me safe today as I resist the temptations of the enemy. Amen.

The Lord's Prayer. This is the first thing I ever memorized because it was so very important for my mom that I know it. I was three years old.

Now, let's look at the final two verses in this section:

14For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
15But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Forgiveness: It's more than sayin' sorry. (Sorry, I had to throw in a movie line. :oP) I've noticed something recently about Jesus: When it's important, He repeats it.

In fact, forgiveness is so important, that it will be the subject of a future blog.

I hope Part 2 is beneficial in your faith walk. Please post any questions or observations below, especially if you are feeling the Holy Spirits leading.

Love y'all!

To be used by Him,

Chelle and BaB