Archive | April 2019

Happy Easter! John 20:26-31

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“After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ Then He said to Thomas, ‘Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here with your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.’

Thomas answered and said to Him, ‘My Lord and My God!’

Jesus said to him, ‘Because you have seen Me, have your believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.’

…these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and that believing you maybe have life in His name.”

May you experience His divine life today as we celebrate worldwide the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the grave proving, after His crucifixion, that He is fully man and fully God.

Happy Easter from Dawn and Buddy

God bless you.

***

Bible quotes are from the New American Standard Bible, NASB, on this blog, unless otherwise noted.

 

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Where Does A Big Gorilla Sit? Psalm 24:1

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When I pick Buddy up I sometimes say, “It sucks being little, doesn’t it?” Because it doesn’t matter what he is doing, because I’m much larger than he is, I get to pick him up whenever I want to and there’s not much he can do about it. But because I love him, I don’t usually pick him up without a valid reason nor is my motive to do him harm.

My first Christian pastor was a big cowboy sporting a ten gallon hat and a red beard. I would attend church Sunday mornings before my job at the local racetrack. The pastor would preach to the employees on the backstretch, then give a second sermon to the front side employees. There was usually only about 6 to 8 of us, so I really appreciated that he would take the time and effort to speak to such a small congregation. (He later moved to Texas and the services ended. I think his name was John.)

The first time I attended, the pastor asked us, “Where does an 800 pound gorilla sit?”

We all sat there silent and wide-eyed, likely all thinking, “Why is he talking about gorillas?”

With a broad smile he answered, “Anywhere he wants to.”

One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Psalm 24:1:

“The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains; The world, and those who dwell in it.”

This truth was stated earlier by Moses in Exodus 9:29: “…the earth is the Lord’s.”

When I pray, it’s comforting to know that God is sovereign: Nothing happens on our planet that He is not aware of, nor can anyone act without His divine permission. I know that “With God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26b) and that He can answer any prayer request or meet any need that I have.

But there’s another truth that most people don’t want to admit: God through Jesus Christ is the boss. He is in control of human history and ultimately, our own destinies (Psalm 139:16). Most people, including myself, want what we want, when we want it and how we want it. We want God to rescue us now, fix it now, give it now, and change the world and people NOW.

But God sees the future, we don’t. He didn’t ask for our permission to create humanity, the world and all its creatures. When rebuking Job for demanding answers, God reminded Job that He didn’t need anyone’s permission to act nor require anyone’s advice. All of His gifts and help are an act of grace by an all powerful deity Who is working all things according to His will.

As the mightiest ancient ruler proclaimed, Nebuchadnezzar, after being humbled by God for pride and hubris:

“For His dominion is an everlasting dominion, and His kingdom endures from generation to generation. All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, but He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; and no one can ward off His hand, or say to Him, “What have you done?””–Daniel 4:34-35

Years ago I stopped at the Bozeman Museum on a road trip through Montana and viewed the Hubble Telescope IMAX exhibit. The scope and beauty of the universe is awesome and very humbling. It’s vastness is truly unimaginable.

Our Great God’s power, imagination and intelligence is far beyond the ability of our finite minds to conceive. Pastor John was comparing God to a gorilla that Sunday morning: He does what He wants, when He wants and how He wants to do it. It was His idea to create and design the earth, humankind, animal and plant life and the universe. He didn’t require our permission or input. And He has a plan that He is working to bring human history to a close, as detailed in Revelation, Daniel, Isaiah and scattered throughout other books in the Bible.

So next time you’re tempted to grumble and complain about God’s timing, His will, His actions or His plan for your life, remember that:

He’s the big Gorilla–and you’re the little dog.

***

When Adam and Eve rebelled against His rule and authority, He could’ve wiped out humanity and just let the animals roam the earth. But He created humans in His image to be His friends.

So, instead of destroying us, He devised a plan to send Jesus to die for our sins to bring us back into relationship with Him. You see, a holy God cannot tolerate unholy people. Sin must be punished. He made this plan to redeem us before the first generation of humans was born:

God said to Satan, who tempted Adam and Eve to reject God’s authority:

“Because you have done this…I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed. He (Jesus) shall bruise you (Satan) on the head, and you shall bruise him in the heel.”–Genesis 3:14-15

God took the initiative at the beginning of human history to bring us back into fellowship with Him through faith in the Messiah, Jesus Christ. Jesus lived the perfect life no human could live. Being both perfect man and God, He was able to bear the punishment for the sins of all humanity so that God’s anger at sin could be appeased. Problem is, you have to accept His forgiveness. God wants us to love Him willingly and won’t force His friendship on us. He doesn’t want to be friends with robots. Please ask Him to forgive your sins and make Him the Lord of your life. He loves you and wants to be your best friend.

Getting Wet, Matthew 23:27-28

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When I walked Buddy tonight, I tried to reign him in on his leash to keep him close to me. Not to restrict his movement, but to try to shelter him under my umbrella so that he wouldn’t get wet from the intermittent rain. Being the usual headstrong terrier, he kept resisting me and pulling out from under the protection of the umbrella, with the predictable result.

“Jerusalem, Jerusalem,…” Jesus lamented in Matthew 23:27-28. “How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling. Behold, your house is being left to you desolate!”

God calls to each of us to run to shelter under His protecting umbrella, yet people think God is trying to crimp their lifestyle with His rules of behavior, so they willfully resist Him and go their own way. As a result, they get wet with the eventual unhappiness and consequences of their behavior. Sometimes they even curse God for their circumstances, when all along He was warning them to turn back.

But God is merciful and loving. When you repent of your willful disobedience, He opens His arms wide and pulls you into His loving embrace. He doesn’t reject anyone who comes to Him.

“And the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.”–Jesus, John 6:37b

Why not give your heart to Jesus now?

Dear Father, I thank you that Jesus, God In the Flesh, took the punishment for ALL my sin on the Cross. And was resurrected bodily to give me eternal life. Please forgive my sin. I invite the Holy Spirit to live His life through me and to guide me. Thank you for loving me.

Please attend a church service this Easter where Christians love and worship the King as described in the Bible. And let them know that you just recently gave your heart to the Lord so that they can assist you in your new life’s journey.

God bless.

Dawn and Buddy