Wednesday, January 27, 2010


“A dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.”

-Josh Billings

'...the solution isn't to try harder, fail, and then make bigger promises, only to fail again. It does no good to muster up more love for God, to will yourself to love him more. When loving God become an obligation, one of many things we have to do, we end up focusing more on ourselves. No wonder so few people want to hear from us about what we ourselves feel is a boring, guilt-ridden chore!' 

-Francis Chan

'These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.'...'Don't you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean.'
-Jesus of Nazareth (Matthew 15:8-9 & 17-18)

Holly and I have started reading again as a couple every night. And since the youth group is using Francis Chan's 'Crazy Love' book as the main resource, we decided to read it together. Through reading again, I have come to realize how important it is to have time with each other and our creator. While I have the luxury of working for a church, I can honestly say that I still struggle with my relationship with God. I know I read scripture everyday, but the question becomes do I really let His word clothe me and run through me-changing me for the day or have I become so numb it doesn't matter because I've heard it before?
I chose the above quotes and scripture because I've been struck by God's Word! I mean Josh's quote get right to the heart of the we love God or our neighbors more than we do ourselves? If the answer is no, then we both have a serious problem. In Francis Chan's book he talks about how true love makes you do some silly things. I mean for those of us who have been in a relationship before...we know we have spent a small fortune on that special someone-but if we love God, why don't we give more money in the offering plate (why does He get the buck or two we really don't care about)? We also know that we would do anything for the person we truly take time off of work to prepare for a surprise (getting them something or doing something they'd really enjoy)-but if we love God why aren't we willing to give Him more of our time? Why aren't we volunteering more of our time and energy to something we know would really please Him? 
I think we have become too desensitized  and too complacent in our lives and have become unwilling to give God more-let alone entertain taking on more. There are too many things in our daily lives that we give more time to-that we think are more important, but what can be more important than living as Christ and God has commanded? It's too bad that loving God and living as a Christians has become a chore for us...and that our failed attempts have left us broken and lost as we try to fill the void with things we know won't last. 
I know that I have honored Him with my lips and that there have been times where my heart was far from Him-I was too busy thinking about my own issues and duties. We all have those days...when life demands more than we can give, but God doesn't demand more than we can handle. In fact he offers us relief. 
When I read: 'the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart,' I couldn't help but go back and read the whole chapter for some context. And what I realized is that the nuts and bolts of this whole chapter wasn't about being psychically unclean (what the Pharisees were arguing about), but about an unclean or untrue heart. I think it has something to do with faith and works
My challenge to you is to slow down-we are so quick to answer, and really listen to God's calling on your life. I know I asked you to ask this earlier, but are you living for Him or yourself? I know it can get complicated at time, but who do you turn to? While friends and family are good to have as a support system...people can and will let you down, but have you given God a chance? And when I say a chance, I don't mean a half-hearted plea during a prayer, but having faith and being changed by the power and renewal only he can bring. I dare you to truly be transformed and more false words and 'honoring' lips that only reflect emptiness or half-heartedness.


Holly said...

I agree, I can only speak for myself, however, but I agree with the statement that we are drawing more complacaint (totally spelled wrong haha) with our lives. I have a long ways to go, but fortunalty have started to dig myself out of the hole I have been in for years, and I try to keep remeinding myself about what is right with God. I am trying to me more Christ centered in everything I do throughout the day. There isnt one day that goes by where I dont talk with Him. I think this was a very good blog and puts pressure on us to see where our hearts REALLY are. I know we are not perfect and we slip from time to time, but I think the point is the effort. Is the effort to improve your relationship and love for God/Christ really there? I personally like the comment about you realizing how important it is to spend time together ;). J/K J/K But really, this is another good reminder to evaluate where we are, thanks again for a great thought provoking blog. God is really speaking through you!! I will end with this Phil 4:13.

Anonymous said...

My friend and I were recently talking about how modern society has evolved to become so integrated with technology. Reading this post makes me think back to that debate we had, and just how inseparable from electronics we have all become.

I don't mean this in a bad way, of course! Ethical concerns aside... I just hope that as technology further develops, the possibility of transferring our memories onto a digital medium becomes a true reality. It's a fantasy that I dream about all the time.

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