This week on Twitter I have been sharing verses and thoughts about the significance of this week leading up to Easter…which historically has been called Passion Week. This is hands down the most important moment in human history, the pivotal event for the Christian faith…the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Most of our culture accepts the first two, that Jesus was a man who lived in actual space and time. That he lived a fruitful life, taught followers and that he ultimately lost His life to the hands of the Romans (or the Jews depending on who you hold responsible). But setting the resurrection aside for a moment, what has been missed by most, including many in the church is that Jesus simply did not lose his life rather he willingly gave it up. And no this isnt mere semantics but an important part of our belief system. Look at Jesus own words in John:
The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father. John 10:17-18
Also remember when He was being arrested under the cover of night when he said this:
“Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? “How then will the Scriptures be fulfilled, which say that it must happen this way? Matthew 25:53-54
It seems to me Jesus knew what was about to take place and was a willing participant. See what motivated him, what filled Him with passion to suffer through such pain was people like you and I. People who apart from that sacrifice would remain eternally separated from God. Today I am thankful for Jesus sacrifice, thankful for a Savior who pursued me.
Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Hebrews 12:1-2
Friend recently shared this message on YouTube. It’s about our tendency to try and please God earning his approval rather than simply living in His Grace. Well worth the 45min, if you watch it let me know and we can discuss it.
Last night we ended our series: “The Truth About Sex” looking at Forgiveness when we have messed up. One of the passages we looked at was from Psalm 103 and though I have read/heard it many times before it was sweet to read it this week:
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
here’s what I miss:
- Hiking in the Oregon forest
- The Holzgang’s Beach House
- Pranking Jay’s office
- Howie nights with the Resnicks
- Worship at City Bible
- Arguing politics with Giering
- The Mountains
- Classes at Western
- Hanging and doing ministry with Austin
- Pizza from Escape from New York
- Game nights at the Meyers
- Laughing with Chip
- The Japanese and Rose Gardens
- Biking through the fields west of 185th
Portland I miss you! See you this summer.
Been awhile since I teared up, belly laughed…
Remember when you were in High School and you were going out with someone…everything was going smooth, your eyes beaming, they could do no wrong…you loved spending time together, going to movies…talking late into the night on your land-line phone (there were no cell phones in the mid nineties – but hey we had cordless!) Then suddenly out of the blue you get the note in your locker or the call that ends everything. “It’s not you it’s me…” rings in your ear. You hangup and experience the burn of a relationship ending.
Social Media has changed relationships…not just dating but friendships, family and colleagues all connect via the internet. While there are benefits to this: connecting with alot more people in a short period of time for example…there are also some destructive ways which it can effect us. One such thing is what I am calling the: “Social Media Breakup.” Occasionally I wonder why I stopped seeing a particular person in my Facebook newsfeed or Twitter list…so curiosity gets the best of me and I run a search and see if we’re still “friends” or if they still “follow me. ” Recently I was laying in bed about to fall asleep and this occurred, I actually got out of bed to grab my phone and see if they had unfollowed me. See there are no alerts as it does when you get a new friend or follower…just silence. I hate this. I think leaving a relationship (even shallow ones on the internet) without any discussion is destructive. Communication is key, it is the only way which we can become better people. If I offended you or you felt I didn’t give you enough attention I would appreciate knowing this. No doubt I need to have integrity here and mention that I too have fallen into this destructive pattern of breaking up on social media. I regret it and need to practice what I am preaching in the future.
Can anyone relate?