Friday, January 18, 2013

Oh yea ?

I just read an article by Shon Hopwood. Most of you have probably never heard of him. Here is a quick synopsis of his life so far. He was a bank robber in Nebraska , he robbed a total of 5 banks. He served Federal Prison time from 1998 to 2009. While in prison he studied law and became a supreme court practitioner. His first Supreme court case to be reviewed was Fellers vs.United States he worked with Seth Waxman in petitioning the case. He won. The article I read by him is about telling how we came to know God's immense grace. He says this-"Chances are, if you are living a “religious” life, your friend will have had no idea that this sin was an issue for you. And chances are that sharing this could radically change their perception of forgiveness, their perception of grace.
Once you repent of and give up the sin, both past and the present—for God makes us a new creation, not a perfect one—then share your story of how God has poured his grace out on you. How God changed you from the inside out through grace alone. And how your life has never been the same."-Shon Hopwood. This is amazing. I mean I spend a lot of time talking about things that probably bore people to death! Doctrine, and dogma and how such and such is how a christian should eat and breath(sarcasm, but you get my drift!) . I never took the time to talk about what God has brought me out of. I never thought to share my experience with God's grace. Like Shon Hopwood I know what it is like to feel the consequences of sin. If I add up all the time I spent in and out of jail from the years 2009 to 2012 I would say I have accumulated up to a year in jail at the most. The effects of sin, plain and simple. I used to steal anything from candy bars to more expensive stuff like video games. You had no idea. Bet you'd be shocked to know I could be a cruel gossiper talking about someone as they walk away within eyesight. Stabbing people in the back , stealing out of the register at work. Sexually promiscuous, literally hating people and wanting them dead, joking about the mentally ill (I'm sorry God ) , mean to family, messing with peoples food at the fast food place I worked at, physical fights, Drinking to get drunk, experimenting with drugs, and evil on top of evil. selling fake drugs. The only way I could turn my life around was by the humongous grace of God. Some might say well all you had to do was stop. But I needed a reason to stop I couldn't just stop without a reason. Why did I stop? because I learned that God has something better in store for me, I learned who I am in Christ (loved, saved, clean, sanctified among many other things) Some might say "see a perfect example of religion being a crutch and only for the weak!" pump your brakes bro! We are all weak we are all sinners, yes to varying degrees but we all are not as good as we think we are. Jesus Christ is the standard. Not me, not Larry, and not alcoholic hobo Joe. Jesus Christ is the standard! Can you tell Jesus Christ you are more righteous then him? huh? No. You can't and neither can I. Back to Grace. I need it, you need it the world needs it. And without faith in Jesus Christ I would just continue on with the same ol same ol. And I don't want to go back to the same ol same ol. Because all that will get me is a nasty empty feeling in my heart.
To God be the glory.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

With a what ?

 When he came to Lehi, the Philistines came shouting to meet him. Then the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon him, and the ropes that were on his arms became as flax that has caught fire, and his bonds melted off his hands. And he found a fresh jawbone of a donkey, and put out his hand and took it, and with it he struck 1,000 men. And Samson said,
    “With the jawbone of a donkey,
        heaps upon heaps,
    with the jawbone of a donkey
        have I struck down a thousand men.”
(Judges 15:14-16 ESV)

When I read this I laughed. I mean seriously, this dude Samson beat down some guys with a jawbone of a donkey. Lol. I would hate to be the Philistines descendants of those guys who got beat. I imagine the conversation to the grand kids would go something like this "soo grandma how did papa go " "Papa (insert hebrew type name) was beat down by a man with long hair wearing barely anything wielding a donkey jawbone" God will come in at the most unexpected times and using the most unexpected things to make his name known. As scripture says in 1 Corinthians 1:27-29 "But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God."

Keep that in mind when you feel like a big bag of sighs, wait on God and he will use you. Have faith in him he will always hold you and keep you safe. Maybe you knew that already. But in all reality writing this probably encouraged me more than you, and if you feel encouraged that's great. Like they say your smile makes me smile. Your encouragement encourages me.
Have a great night.