Thursday, March 30, 2017

lukewarm


"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am going to spew you out of my mouth. You say I am rich; I acquired wealth and do not need a thing. But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked.
Revelation 3:16

It's not easy to understand God's ways. He tells us the simple reason is, "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts" (Isaiah 55:9). 

So when Christians -- His own people -- do not understand at times why He says and does things then it's an issue of our own faith. We have to believe God is the God of all truth. We have to accept His word and His ways as showing His love for us. We believe He is sovereign and in control of all things.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path" (Proverbs 3:5-6).

After He calls out our name and we drop everything and turn to Him, He fills us with His Holy Spirit so we can easily communicate with Him! From that point on, He loves us and cares for us more faithfully and powerfully than any human. We have to be a diligent student of the word of God to know Him better.  

Okaaaay...then what's with this vomit thing? I thought He was a God of love and all that?

He is all that! He is a God of love, mercy, compassion, power, faithfulness, kindness, long-suffering, wrath, justice, and He rules over all of creation.

So when He saves us through the blood of Jesus, His Son, we are changed and our hearts long for Him. And that's exactly what He wants! He wants us! He wants our time and love and fellowship! Seriously. He deeply loves His children.

When we take our eyes off Him and our ears begin to listen and follow the lies of worldly chatter, the fire in our hearts begins to grow cold toward Him. We are lured away from His ways and into accumulating stuff and to people and outward appearances. We are no longer hot or cold about being a Christ follower, we're just lukewarm. Fence sitters. Carnal Christians (oxymoron). Complacent. Apathetic. Just too busy for God. Period.

When we're lukewarm we'll only read our Bibles and go to church when we feel like it. Hey man it's trendy to show up at church when we feel like it, right? Trendy is cool.  And when we're in the worship service we don't sing or engage in the message, no, we just make an appearance. "Hey, I went to church! I'm a good person. I just don't have time to read a Bible. And praying? I don't get that. It's only for the religious Christians, really." 

This kind of attitude is what makes God vomit. Scary, isn't it? 

Charles Spurgeon writes: "Lukewarmness is nauseous to the Lord. The bad may be reclaimed, but those who are neither one thing nor the other are in a hopeless condition, for they are too  full of conceit to be led to repentance."

Is the American Church lukewarm today? Is God going to spew us out?

May God forgive America for our sins and turn our hearts back to Him. For the glory of God and the good of our own families, neighborhoods, churches, and communities.

"Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with Me... Whoever has ears let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches" Revelation 3:19-20,22).

In Jesus' Name,
Polly


Wednesday, March 22, 2017

catch of the day


Whenever Jesus goes fishing for disciples He already knows who will become His catch of the day as a faithful follower. His true disciples will see His invitation to follow Him as a blessing while others will see their invite as a curse.

Before Jesus called His first disciples at the Sea of Galilee, (Luke 5) He had already transformed their hearts from being fishermen to become fishers of men. With crowds pressing in on Him on the shore, He came to the water's edge, stepped into Simon's boat and asked him to "put out a little from shore" so he could continue teaching the crowd. Simon, who would be later called Peter, was already worn out from fishing all day long. Exhausted. Tired. Probably sleepy, too. Ya think?

When Jesus finished teaching He said to weary Simon, "Put out into the deep water and let down the nets for a catch. Simon answered, "Master, we've worked so hard all night and haven't caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets" (Luke 5:5).


Wait a minute! You mean weariness isn't an honest reason to tell Jesus, "No?"  Nope. What if we were fishing all night and not catching anything? Why would we go back out on the same night? Simon obeyed without an argument. Hmmm. Is that like us? Hmmmm. And maybe with Jesus helping, things would turn out differently. Ya think? Uh-huh. That's right.

When we don't persevere and do what we know is right, we're not believing God is always working things out for our good. For example, Simon was very tired and Jesus was fully aware of his state. He was in the midst of preparing to bless Simon's socks off!  However, Simon saw going "out in the deep" as just extending his already long night of not catching any fish!

When they were out there fishing in deep water Simon tried to pull up his nets up but they were breaking from all the fish inside them! He called out to nearby fishermen to come and help pull the bursting nets out of the water! What? Yes!

Simon was overcome with the abundant blessing of the fish, and in humility told Jesus, "Go away from me, Lord, I am a sinful man!" (v. 6)

Jesus got his attention. Simon saw Jesus. Simon believed Jesus, became a fisher of men, and pulled his fishing boat up on shore to begin His walk with Jesus. Simon "left everything and followed Him."



This is us, right? May it be so, Lord.
For His glory,
Polly