Thursday, 17 September 2015

He is coming back...

"Then he showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. There shall no more be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and his servants shall worship him; they shall see his face, and his name shall be on their foreheads. And night shall be no more; they need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they shall reign for ever and ever" {Re 22:1-5}

The recent REAP readings in Ezekiel and Revelation have been heavy and any newcomer to reading the Bible would find it pretty tough going. But the beauty of this Bible reading plan is that we get to read the whole of God's word not just the bits we like but the tough gritty bits that weigh our thoughts down and grow us in our knowledge and love of God.

Which is what I love! I love how the Scriptures challenge us, I love how they cut deep into our soul revealing the murky bits ( Even just now as I complain to my family how I never have any "blogging" time after realising I hadn't shared my journal thoughts since May...)

BUT I have been reaping and it's getting a lot easier as my own spiritual life is becoming more robust and mature (though I still have a very long way to go!). The last few months have been challenging but daily I'm reminded that we are indeed living in a broken world. And when I'm tempted to think that everyone else has it all together, except me. God challenges me by throwing me into another relationship where a marriage is breaking down, or a friend is fighting depression or various addictions and I'm given another chance to share my love of Jesus and their need for Him too.

These two books of the Bible full of amazing imagery, in fact downright scary imagery at times are thrilling to me because it should wake us up to the reality that judgement is coming, for all of us. We will all be accountable for the way we have led our lives. We will get what is coming for us and a part of me (the sinful part) rejoices at the fact they every person that has caused pain in my life will be held accountable. But then the Spirit within me who longs to be reconciled to his people cries out for those that are lost and it's then that I feel immense sorrow for those that have rejected the one that can save them on that day of judgement.

In the Ezekiel readings I'm reminded that God's people have stuffed up BIG time. They have turned their backs on a good loving God for their own desires. Yet in God's mercy and because of his promise to remain faithful, He promises to search for the lost.

"I will search for the lost and bring back the strays. I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak, but the sleek and the strong I will destroy. I will shepherd the flock with justice" {Ez 34:16}

In the book of Revelation we see the suffering servant of the Gospels become the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The one that is coming back to rule forever and forever. Who will deliver justice to the nations and claim what is his, His chosen people. The Great Shepherd who will shepherd the flock with justice.
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And I'm just in awe that He chose me, undeserving, quite ordinary, me. He promises to find me! And I love that I'm reminded of this every single morning as I open his word and delight in it.

Today, as I listened to a friend explain how good walking is in the morning for her mental health. I was able to share with her that reading my Bible and praying in the morning is the best thing for my mental and spiritual health. It prepares my soul for what could be the day that my Lord and Saviour returns to take me home.

Come soon Lord Jesus, Come soon...

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Mummy, do you know Jesus?

Today's REAP readings: 2 Samuel 18, 20; Psalm 56; John 21

"For you have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life" {Psalm 56:13}

One thing about being a mum is that you never know what the next conversation might be with your children. All kinds of interesting topics come up around the dinner table, in the car, on the way to school, even on our way to church. One thing with children is it seems all topics are up for grabs with not much censoring at times, meaning there can be much talk about poo and wee much to my dislike.

But recently I was caught a little off guard on our way to preschool when my littlest suddenly comes out with;

"Mummy, do you know Jesus?"

"Um well yes as a matter of fact I do"

"But how mummy you can't even see him?"

"Hmm well um err well I read the Bible, I um pray to him and yeah". 

Probably not the best theological answer on the spot...

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But his question got me thinking and in particular drew me back to some of the recent REAP readings, in particular the gospel of John as I tried to think of a better answer.

John wants  readers of his account to believe Jesus is who He says He is and he seems to big on giving us the truth...

Check out some of these verses;

 "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth" {John 1:14}

"But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him" {John 4:23}

"and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free" {John 8:32}

"Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" {John 14:6}
"even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you" {John 14:17}

So when my little boy asks me next time, I'm gonna say this;
"I know Jesus, because I believe he came to save me, I trust his words completely and I know that he could never lie to me or take his love away. I know Jesus, and even though I can't see him, his Spirit dwells deep in my heart giving me an assurance of his never ending love and grace. I know Jesus  because He died for me and for you and one day we'll see him face to face"

Do you know Jesus?