The Intent of This Blog

This blog is intended to be a tool for the growth of whoever wants to use it. It is a daily journal intended to help us be more introspective. Every day I will do my best to supply a motivational quote, a Bible verse, a vocabulary word, and a personal message from myself. Use these if you like as motivation to improve yourself. Then, simply answer the daily questions provided honestly and see if it has an impact on your life. Zig Ziglar said, "If you don't have daily objectives, you qualify as a dreamer." Lets not be just dreamers but doers. Remember Martin Luther King Jr not only had a dream, he also had an objective. Thanks for reading, Jake

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Friday, March 29, 2013

Shaped by Love

“The things we know best are the things we haven’t been taught.”  Luc de Clapiers 

“All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up.  1 Corinthians 10:23

Fuliginous:  “obscure, murky”  Merriam-Webster Dictionary

Just what does obedience have to do with Christianity?  We know we are saved by God’s grace and the salvation He offers through the cross.  But what about the law?  What about in the Bible where God told the Israelites He would bless them if they kept His statutes and punish them if they did otherwise?  Can that happen to us?  Can we be blessed in obedience and punished in disobedience?  And if so, to what degree do we need to keep His statutes?  To what degree can we be punished?  Let’s explore the possibilities and the boundaries.  To the Israelites breaking the sabbath was deserving of death.  As Christians we’re told our sins are forgiven and that we can be saved no matter what.  Ok, so we know that Jesus forgave all sins on the cross, both past and present.  We know that the sins of the Israelites in the desert are forgiven as much as ours.  But they still suffered stiff consequences for disobedience.  Can we?  Is there a code of conduct we must live by?  A code that if not followed leads to punishment or even death?  If so, what is it?  I’m gonna go out on a limb here, be bold, and say that, there is not.  There is no lifestyle, no rules, no code of conduct a Christian must live by.  However, in saying that, I have to be bold once more and say that there is a Christian lifestyle.  There are rules Christians will follow.  There is a code we will live by.  Notice however the difference between “must” and “will.”  Once we’ve accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior there is nothing we “must” do.  But there are so many things we “will” do.  Not because we have to.  Not necessarily because we want to.  But because we just will.  I know this sound fuliginous, but there’s something about Jesus that changes from the inside out.  His grace transforms through the power of love.  It’s that love that conforms us to His will.  Through His love a new life is formed.  A life, not about following rules, but about following Jesus.  And when we keep out eyes on Him, “The Author and finisher of our faith,”  Hebrews 12:2a the distractions and sins of natural life are not so alluring.  We’ll never reach perfection here on earth.  We’ll always be distracted and fail.  But knowing that we’ve already been forgiven changes everything.  No, there is nothing we must do.  But there is so much we will do.  When we are changed by His love and His joy.

Daily Journaling Questions:
  1. How did I help someone in kindness today?
  2. What did I learn today?
  3. What am I thankful for?
  4. Who did I love today?
  5. What am I dreaming of?
  6. What about today do I want to remember forever?
  7. What are my goals for tomorrow?
Thanks for reading,
Jake

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