April 25, 2008

No Fear of Death

The ladies at my church are doing a book study on "Stepping Heavenward" by Elisabeth Prentiss. It is such a great book filled with truth and experiences that we as women encounter. It's hard to believe that a book written in the 1800s could mean something to a 26 year old in 2008, but it does. One of our topics last night was on no fear in death. I wanted to share Caroline Fry's dying words and what a peace that she has about dying.

"This is my bridal day, the beginning of my life. I wish there could be no mistake about the reason for my desire to depart and to be with Christ. I confess myself the vilest, chiefest of sinners and I desire to go to Him that I may be rid of the burden of sin - the sin of my nature- not the past, repented of every day, but the present, hourly, momentary sin, which I do commit, or may commit - the sense of which at times drives me half mad with grief!"

Now I have not been at death's bed but I want to have this same attitude, that dying is the beginning of my life. I want to live with the peace that surpasses all understanding that not even death can separate me from the love of Christ.

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. - Romans 8:38-39

April 22, 2008

Why Preach Christ Crucified?

What is written below is taken from my pastor's sermon on Sunday. Read it and make it part of your life:

“Why Preach Christ Crucified?”

1. Christ crucified proclaims the holiness of God
“My brethren, I plead that we may get that note back into our religious life. We are never going to have grand trees of righteousness until they are rooted in a rich soil of reverence, and we are never, I think, going to get the requisite reverence until we find time to contemplate God’s holiness; and I do not know any place that will lead us to such a fruitful contemplation of God’s holiness as when we take our place near the cross.”

2. Christ crucified reveals the awfulness of sin
“We preach Christ crucified, because it is the doctrine that incomparably creates and preserves the sense of the nature of sin. Any doctrine that unveils the holiness of God reveals also the horribleness of sin; any doctrine that obscures God’s holiness veneers man’s sin.”

3. Christ crucified demonstrates the grace of God
“The cross is not merely the birthplace of my fears, or the birthplace of my shames, or the birthplace of my disgusts. It is the birthplace of the radiant and immortal hope.”

4. Christ crucified prompts a life of holiness
Quoting David Brainerd:
“I never got away from Jesus, and Him crucified, and found that when my people were gripped by this great evangelical doctrine of Christ, and Him crucified, I had no need to give them instructions about morality. I found that one followed as sure and inevitable as the other… I find my Indians begin to put on the garments of holiness, and their common life begins to be sanctified even in a trifle when they are possessed by the doctrine of Christ, and Him crucified.”

April 20, 2008

A Mighty Fortress Is Our God

Ok...I know you are singing it now..."a bulwark never failing..." Martin Luther wrote the unbelievable words to this beautiful hymn. I can barely sing this song without tears building in my eyes because of what it says about my great, big GOD.

Well we had pick your own hymn tonight at our church. After we sang this song our pastor read to us Psalm 46, the psalm that Martin Luther based A Mighty Fortress upon. Pastor Todd read,

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."

That is our very present, not absent, not distant God. He continued to read..

"Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change and though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains quake at its swelling pride."

No matter what happens, if the mountains in Germany that Martin Lutherwere to fall into the Altantic Ocean, we should still not fear. He continued to read...

"There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy dwelling places of the most High.
God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations made an uproar, the kingdoms tottered;
He raised His voice, the earth melted.
The LORD of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.
Come, behold the works of the LORD,
who has wrought desolations in the earth.
He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariots with fire."
And then here is the great part...
"Cease striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.
The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold."

Our God tells His people to cease striving...cease means to stop in case you didn't know . So as we begin this week, let's cease striving and behold the works of the Lord. Let's cease striving when the mountains in our life fall into the ocean and know that He is God. This reminds me of a song and I don't know where it came from but my mom used to sing it to us:

"Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am God.
Be still and know that I am God"

April 07, 2008

Christ as our Forerunner

I love our church! God has been so gracious to bless with the people and more importantly the teaching. Since Shane and I have been going to Grace Covenant, in Sunday School we have been going through, verse-by-verse, the first 5 books of the Bible. Well in January we started in Hebrews, a bit surprised by this, we were encouraged to read through Hebrews at least once a week and also to memorize some key verses. I have to admit the memorization, I am not doing so well but the reading of Hebrews has become so precious to me. I didn't realize it but Hebrews has just come alive to me and I think it is mainly because of the studying we had done of Genesis and Exodus. Anyway...2 weeks ago Dr. Cowan taught us from Hebrews 6 where it talks about Christ as our anchor and forerunner and what that really means in the original text.

Forerunner is a nautical term. One of the safest places to be on the ocean is in the harbor. Well big ships could not get into the harbor unless it was high tide b/c of the sandbar. So if they arrived and it was not high tide they would send a "forerunner" that held the anchor ahead of them into the harbor. The forerunner would throw the anchor into the harbor and therefore the ship would be safe and secure in case of a storm. Well then he brought this back to the text. Christ, at the cross has taken the anchor and thrown it into the harbor. If you are anchored to Him, you are safe, even though the storms will come, your anchor is in Him and it will not be moved. Also, that is a promise to us that one day we will also enter into the "harbor" where we will not see another storm. What a great picture! Thank you Lord for being our forerunner!

April 02, 2008

Get to Know You Thingy (adopted from Manders)

So, I was tagged by Manders to do this little get to know you thingy. The rules of the game get posted at the beginning.- Each player answers the questions about themselves.- At the end of the post, the player then tags 5 people, posts their names, and then leaves a comment on their blogs, letting them know they've been tagged. Here we go....

What was I doing 10 years ago (April 1998)?
I was a sophomore at Baker High School. We had just moved from Collierville, TN in December so I was still meeting new friends. I was learning to chew on the meat that we received through the teaching at Dauphin Way Baptist Church...what a blessing!!!

5 Things on my "To Do" list today:
  1. Finish my Stepping Heavenward Bible Study
  2. Clean my kitchen.
  3. Wash the darks.
  4. Write some notes
  5. Plan a lingerie shower
5 Things I would do if I were a Billionaire:
  1. Pay off my student loans.
  2. Go to Disney World.
  3. Take our friends to dinner instead of them taking us.
  4. Buy a house.
  5. Buy a VERY new car...like a Jeep Liberty or something like that...one that has the works!
5 Bad Habits:
  1. Biting my nails!
  2. Being LAZY!
  3. Watching too much TV
  4. Waiting to the last minute
  5. I'm sure there are a whole lot more but I can't think of them right now
5 Places I have lived:
  1. Jackson, MS
  2. Ticonderoga, NY
  3. Collierville, TN
  4. Mobile, AL
  5. Birmingham, AL

5 Jobs I have had:

  1. Counselor at Day Camp
  2. Student Worker in President's Office @ MC
  3. Tax Resolver at MS State Tax Commission
  4. Tax Preparer at Jackson Hewitt
  5. Clerk/Office Manager at Comau Inc.

1. Beth @ A Debtor to Mercy Alone
2. Claire @ Cooking is Medicine
3. Angela @ The Busy Mama
4. Jennifer @ The Believers Rest
5. Melody @ MountainMelody