Probadly Not a Popular Subject but a Needed One | the Results Outweigh This World’s

God’s Word is so precious, isn’t it? This morning I sit here writing in silence; the house is quiet with sleeping children and the rain is falling so gently the sounds are so inviting. My quiet time with the Lord has been very sweet this morning!

I love to journal, so I started there because my mind was filled with other thoughts that needed to “come out” so that my mind would be clear once the Word was opened. The coffee is made. I started in Colossians, but the Lord redirected me to Ephesians, specifically chapter 4. Now I am no theologian, that is my husband’s domain, but when I read Ephesians 4:11-16 my mind and heart suddenly became very God-stirred to the point of needing to write…write a not so popular topic at that, but a much needed one.

I don’t know about you, but it breaks my heart when a child of God chooses to live their life in bitterness, unforgiveness, and resentment – which is really choosing to live a life in opposition against God. I know the struggle is real. I have struggled myself on different occasions with all three, yet by God’s grace He has ripped those roots out of my life then set me free (which He can do the same for you), but it’s a choice.

One cannot walk in sin and claim their relationship with Christ as intimate – it is an oxymoron, a no-can-do! Sin always hinders your relationship with Christ; it is never His fault. He is holy.

Just one symptom of choice that breeds bitterness, resentment (which go hand in hand) and unforgiveness is unresolved issues via the topic of “Church.” Now any “unresolved” issue will breed bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness, but today we are being specific.

The “church” topic is a hot one, yet I find it is mainly amongst those who claim Christ; those who have “church” baggage. Now before we launch off (or you turn me off), I know there are some out there who truly have had some horrible experiences – sadly they happen within the church, for this I am not excusing or accepting what others have wrongly done to you. I pray that you have been biblically guided, cared for, and walked with and most of all (you) have chosen to walk in obedience to Christ – whatever the offense(s) done to you have been. Be careful what you choose to hold onto it — it will change your life either way.

Specifically, we are talking about the matter of our own heart. Are we striving to walk in obedience before God – in all things? We need to grasp, that before a righteous and holy God no excuse, no experience, no situation, no word spoken to us here on Earth will be our defense to use as justification for our disobedience. God cares more about your heart, your choices, whether or not you choose to walk in obedience to Him or not in this earthly life, even through the toughest valleys.

In conversations, so often when “church or church membership” or “I use to go to church” or “I’ve been hurt by so many churches” come up, we usually quote, “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching (Hebrews 10:25). This is a fabulous verse! So True. Clear and to the point. Yet, rejected by many. Thankfully, obeyed by many.

But read with me in Ephesians, “And He gave some as apostle, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects in Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

  • Praise the Lord for Pastor’s who weekly bring the Word to us – some 4+ times a week, for their love for Christ, their God-calling to feed the sheep, and to share Christ.
  • Praise the Lord for Evangelists who preach the Word of God –sharing the Good news of Jesus Christ.
  • Praise the Lord for the gift of teachers. Those who have a love-burden to share Christ with others of all ages.
    • The Result: Through the love labors of God’s servants, they are a God-blessing to you, saint! Don’t muzzle the ox. You have been given this gift from God, to help in your equipping you in your God-service. This is the working in God’s work, for the building up of the body of Christ…until Jesus Christ returns! Isn’t that so precious. What a gift to be given! Thank your Pastor. Thank God for your Pastor
    • The Result: So, we do not act like little children any more – because our flesh will want too. Praise the Lord to have such a gift to aid us in our growth in Christ, to help us grow in the Word so that we are not so easily influenced, or deceived by the world’s craftiness, so that we are not ‘carried away’ but rather grounded in the Truth. What a blessing!
    • The Result: Because of being taught in the Word, and the Word changing us, we grow in ALL aspects of Christ. Our spiritual growth should be daily, because our relationship with Christ is personal. Coming together as a body of Christ magnifies the beauty of Christ and He fits every joint together as One.
    • The Result: By growing in all aspects in Christ, who is the head, the whole body (the church) is filled and held together by each believer (each joint – each God gift) according to the proper working of each individual part which (this is so beautiful) CAUSES THE GROWTH OF THE BODY (the church) TO BUILD UP ITSELF UP IN LOVE.
    • The Result: If we lived our life in Christ, His Church, God’s way – our lives, His church would be fabulous!
    • God’s plan works! The question is are we willing to obey?

Whatever excuses you have used to not obey God, to not go to a Bible preaching church, to stay home or do other things, to not become a member (to commit yourself) of a local Bible preaching church (in Acts they were baptized and added to the church daily), to not serve God with the God-gifts He has given you, to not worship God — have no merit before God. It is not that He doesn’t love you, it is because He loves you!

Excuses are just that, excuses. God doesn’t want your sacrifices or your works, He wants YOU! Your heart – your life, your ALL! He gave us His all, His life – who are we to think we can claim this life as “mine”?

If you find yourself in the camp of bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness, or find yourself clinging onto something rather than walking in peace, obedience, and life in Christ you need to seek God first — confess these things before Him, ask Him to forgive you and create in you a clean heart and renew a right spirit within you (Psalm 51:10). Seek out someone who can Biblically help you through this these heart-idol that keep you in bondage. To not resolve them Biblically is your choice of self-cannibalism. There is freedom in Christ. The Truth does set you free (John 8:32).

  • Nowhere in Scripture does God justify or state it is okay for us to claim Christ and walk in disobedience to Him.
  • Nowhere will you find God telling us it is okay not to serve Him, not love Him, not obey Him, not to put Him first and that He is okay with second place, not to use our talents in the ‘body of Christ’ (the church), not to put on Christlikeness and walking in our flesh is justified. It is not found anywhere in Scripture!

I lovingly tell you, whatever excuses you think are valid before God that justify your disobedience do not stand before Christ! We must take responsibility – by God’s grace confess, forsake, and work through the areas the Lord points out in your soul for you to begin to walk in accordance to His will. Scripture says, if you seek Him you will find Him (Jeremiah 29:13). Fulfilling His purposes are far more valuable than anything this world could offer.

Life is short. What we do here on Earth both matters now and for eternity. We do not know when our last breath will be, that is not to live in fear, but to live – to live in the fullness of Christ! God rightfully deserves our worship, praise, honor, and reverence. He desires our growth and best.

I want to tell you a little secret, I do not go to church because I am a Christian. I do not go to church because I am a pastor’s wife. I go to church because I desperately NEED God (without Him I am nothing, I can do nothing) my soul needs Christ and the Word! I go to church because I love God (I am a sinner saved by His amazing grace)!

How about you?

  • Don’t use others sinfulness to justify your own sin.
  • The choice to love and obey Christ far outweighs the losses you would face if you chose to use sin as a weapon.
  • Don’t take my word for it, search the Scriptures! Trust God!

Enjoy Christ. He loves you. We need to look no further than the Cross. Praying for you, friend!

In Christ I am SHE {Saved. Hopeful. Empowered.}

Church…we ARE Plan A there is no Plan B

3 Simple Reasons why Church is God’s Plan A.

Here are three simple reasons why “church” is GOD’S plan A and there is no plan B in God’s book. Why we must stop kicking and screaming and questioning God’s plan. It is He that is in change. It is HIS salvation gift to us. It is His death that paid the price…NOT OURS!

1. Church is plan A because God tells us NOT to forsake the gathering of ourselves together as believers. This is one of those hot buttons of the day and yes, I am going to talk about it! First, I’d like to say that I am truly sorry if you have been hurt, offended, or even abused in any form by the church as a whole. This is WRONG!! This is not pleasing, honoring, or glorifying to the Lord nor is it not His plan for His church.

But may I ask you a question? Have you ever bought something from a store, like meat, and got home to find out that it was bad? Did it stop you from buying meat for the rest of your life? 

Have you ever had food poisoning from a restaurant? Did that stop you from ever eating out again? Most likely NOT! 

SO…why is it when something “bad” at church happens we lump them all together and vow the mother of all vows that ALL Christians are hypocrites, ALL churches are filled with liars, cheaters, hypocrites, and rotten filthy sinners and we are never going back. 

I want to stop right here. I understand, I know I talk with ladies who have physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually been abused by family members, unbelievers as well as believers. None are right. None should have happened (mine included), but we live in a sin-filled world and we have a choice. Yes, we have a choice even in the midst of our greatest pain, sorrow and trial. Will I use this situation to grow closer to my Heavenly Father or will I take it and grow bitter by the the day.

So often, I see “church” used as an excuse and see bitterness grow by the day and the choice to live in disobedience to God spiral from that one choice! 

The bitterness will take you farther than you ever excepted to go. 

Regardless of what enters of life, we are accountable before Christ. When we use people as an excuses to not obey Christ, we justify our own actions and guilt to make ourselves feel better. 

I have another question to ask you. I am assuming you got over your food poisoning or got over that purchase of “bad meat.” If I opened your refrigerator door, I would find it full or at least part-way full and would come to find out that you have feasted on many meals “outside” of your home. You didn’t grow bitter at the “bad” meat. You didn’t call the store a hypocrite. You didn’t hold a grudge. You didn’t allow bitterness, people, or excuses from stopping you from shopping or eating, did you??!!

So why the double standard? Using people, excuses, our own bitterness and unforgiveness to NOT obey God is sin. If you are a child of God, you are part of plan A…you are not doing your part. You are needed, but you are choicing to missing out on God’s plan A. 

Because Matthew 18 wasn’t practiced like it should have been when the offense happened, sadly, you are hurting yourself, the church, fellow believers, unbelievers, and you are hurting the cause of Christ…for what “bad meat?” That didn’t stop you before!

Reconcile that “bad meat” even if the other party doesn’t want too! Make it right before God on YOUR end!! Go and confront that offense! Seek and be ye reconciled. Forgive.

I speak from experience! I have “abuse” in my background. What kind I will not speak of at this time, but believe me when I tell you, I know! I know what I feels like, how it hurts, the anger, bitterness, the confusion, the spiral effects. But I also know the healing power of God in ones heart and life. I know the comfort and release of walking in obedience to the Father and it is worth it all! I would do it a thousand times over!

It is one of the hardest things you will ever do, but it is one of the most spirit-freeing (bondage releasing) God+you experience you will ever do, because when you walk in trust and obedience, God blesses! You NEVER go wrong walking in obedience to Christ….NEVER!

Hebrews 10:25

2. The very second you accepted Christ as your personal Savior, He gave you at least one spiritual gift, at least one. You may have more! Do you know your spiritual gift or gifts? Do you know God wants that gift or gifts to be used? Yeppers, you guessed it! For Him, for His Glory in His Church! 

I hear the question already, can you use your God-given gift in other places? Sure! But the primary place is where He wants, within His Church. Again, this is not our plan or trying to make our plan work…this is God’s plan. We either obey and do or not!

I Peter 4:10-11

3. Church is Plan A because it is the only plan! We are to be proclaiming, mouthpieces, ambassadors, of what and who God is and what He has done for us to everyone soul we come in contact with. To fail to accomplish the great commission is to live in disobedience to Christ. 

Matthew 28:18-20

  • The bottom line is this: God’s Word is clear. The choice is in your hands…your heart.
  • How will you choose to walk before the very God who gave you your eternal life? 

In Christ I am SHE {Saved. Hopeful. Empowered.}