I Believe in You

This is the title of the new series at church.  I had to fight tears the whole time.

Our pastor may not be the most eloquent but he has one thing going for him:  he is authentic, God-centered, and heart-felt.  He often cries when he speaks about God and one can’t help but feel his passion for the Lord.

At some point or points, one person or persons believed in you. They told you, “Yes, you can” when others (including yourself) believed otherwise.  Our pastor related his personal story and gave credit to his wife who admittedly he said he wouldn’t be here without her.  She believed in him when he didn’t.  He founded our church 28 years ago with 7 people and now it’s in the thousands.

We need to believe in others.  We need to believe in our spouse. We need to invest in those nearest us–someone. We need an older mentor. We need an encourager.  We need to give of ourselves in order to live.

God wants us to quit settling.  God wants us to have all He has given to us; to seize it.  Satan will try to talk us out of everything God wants us to do.  He will lie to us.

Jesus commissioned his 11 disciples to spread his work.  Jesus believed in them.  He believed in Peter, who denied him 3 times.

God believes in us.  He wants us to follow His call on our life.  God believes in us when we don’t know if we want to go on.

Romans 8:31  If God is for us, who can be against us?

Several songs popped in my mind:  Our God by Chris Tomlin, The Words I Would Say by Sidewalk Prophets, and You Never Let Go by Matt Redman

We need to believe we can do whatever our calling/purpose is in this world.  This gets me through when I’m stuck.  I tell myself, “This is God’s work.  It’s for Him.  It will be all worth it when it’s done.”

When was the last time someone told you they believed in you? When was the last time you told someone you believed in them?

You might not remember.  But I bet you remember the last time you needed to hear it.

It’s Not About Me

I read Sarah Palin’s new book, America By Heart.  It was good.  It echoes a lot of what Glenn Beck and The 5000 Year Leap say about country, pride, faith, and America.

One book she quoted in her book that struck me was It’s Not About Me by Max Lucado.  Since my husband and I have both been accused of being selfish by his family recently, I thought this book apropos.  Plus, what better way to begin the New Year?

I like Max Lucado.  As creator of the Wemmicks, he’s a special guy in my kids’ eyes.  But I’ve only read one adult book of his until this one.

Here’s the best parts and quotes:

When our deepest desire is not the things of God, or a favor from God, but God himself, we cross a threshold.

Lucado then discusses Moses in the desert and while talking to God he asks him, “Show me your Glory.” (Exodus 33:18)  Lucado asks, “Don’t we all need to be asking the same thing?”  So we can be changed forever as Moses was?

We exist to reveal His glory but we must first see and know His glory and live it in our lives.

Holy is repeated 3 times in Isaiah 6:2.  What other adjective is repeated to describe God?

God’s mercy makes us holy.

We can endure any challenge for a moment when our reward is eternity.

If it’s all about you, then it’s all up to you.  God loves us too much to give us such a burden.  He loves us too much to give us too much.  He knows our limitations and weaknesses.  Because He loves us.

Side Note:  Lucado told a story about Queen Victoria’s daughter, Alice, and how she loved her sick son so much so kissed him even though he was in quarantine.  She died a few days later.  I immediately looked this up on the internet because I had never heard of this story.  Great stuff.  Be prepared to shed a tear.

As we behold His glory, we become it.  As we become it, we reflect it for all to see.

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17

Our body is interwoven with the soul.  “Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself?”  1 Corinthians 6:15  So whatever touches the body, impacts the soul.

Your body, God’s tool.  Maintain it.

Your body, God’s temple.  Respect it.

God does leave us to the consequences of our stupid decisions. But our pain has a purpose: problems, struggles, heartaches, and hassles cooperate toward one end–the glory of God.  Is there any change you have been selected to struggle for God’s glory?  “To suffer for Him.” Philippians 1:29

God will use whatever He wants to display His glory.  Nations.  People.  Problems.

God can be seen through your problems.

Your success is all about God.  God lets you excel so you can make Him known.  You are good at what you do for God’s sake.

We exist to give honor to his name.  If they know His child (us humans), then they know His heart.

There is a great section in here discussing Isaiah and when he saw the glory of God, was cleansed by the seraphs, and said, “Here am I!”  This was especially satisfying to me since I knew exactly what Lucado was getting at–all thanks to BSF!

This was a great reminder book.  Easy read and relatively short.  Great ideas and lessons from the Bible. Everything in our lives: our bodies, our struggles, our success, our salvation, and our messages are for God’s glory.  It’s all about God, not us.

Live for God.