They still need help in New Orleans?

Let’s not forget New Orleans
Jason Sampler is working with many Southern Baptist Groups who are working in New Orleans. Yes, they still need help. Please pray for them.

If you know any groups who can go, you can get in touch with Jason. He posted some photos on his blog for you to look at, one of which is a debris pile where they were working last Sunday.

Refocusing on my purpose
It is vital as a blogger to know WHY you are blogging. On my teacher blog, I feel certain of my purpose.

I must admit I’ve had some struggles on my Christian blog of late. I feel inadequate.

To Encourage

I was talking to my mother yesterday and she was talking about one of her favorite writers, the Flylady. She gets her e-mails every day and it is encouraging to her.

I feel that my purpose is not only to spotlight missions but to encourage YOU and myself in the process. I want to help you see God’s great purpose for You. How much He loves YOU!

Don’t be distracted

Lately I’ve been disheartened by legalism and theologic minutia that’s everywhere! That is just not me. I’m not a theologian or a wise sage or overeducated professor. I’m me. I’m in the trenches. I do the best I can. I love Jesus Christ the best I can.

I don’t write to you because I’m so good. He loves me not because of anything. Just ’cause. I have been forgiven much but He loves me more!

He loves you more!

You may love Him but He loves you more! You may have loved Him most of your life, He loved you first.

Many of the parables in the New Testament were not to teach us how to live but how God feels about us.

God wants you to know that He loves you. Period with a red pool of blood at the end of a sentence.

Parables help us know who God loves. To know who we should love.

Don’t get tied up in rules

Shun legalism. Jesus is THE WAY — not THE RULE.

Ben Franklin’s thirteen virtues couldn’t pull a good person closer to heaven. God’s grace makes the vilest criminal clean.

It threatens our sensibilities that a criminal and murderer can become saved on their deathbed and still go to heaven. But it is the truth. Jesus forgave the criminal on the cross. (Luke 23:43)

We name the wrong prodigal in the parable of the prodigal son

I think in the story of the Prodigal Son that we call the wrong son the prodigal. (Luke 15:11-31)

The son who squandered his wealth came home. The son who stayed and served his Father never really was at home. At the end of the story, the son who was in the house was the one estranged from the father, not the “prodigal.” (But he was angry and would not go in. v28)

Churches can be full of prodigals

People who aren’t happy when sinners, crack heads, sexually promiscuous, ex-cons, and drug users come into the church seeking forgiveness and grace. People who don’t love little children and care more about the paint on the church steeple than a ministry to the hungry. People who resent new ideas and feel like that if they are not the center of it, then it can’t be from God.

But although the prodigals are there, Jesus died for the church. He loves the church. I cannot let my frustration with church members cause me to sin by forsaking my own church! (Sometimes I’m the prodigal myself if I don’t watch my own attitude!)

Don’t let frustration cause you to sin!

I cannot let my frustration cause me to sin. God cares HOW we do things as much if not more than WHAT we do. Ramrodding the “right thing” through is doing the WRONG thing. Henry Blackaby had it right about praying and working together.

John 13:35
By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

In Conclusion: You are important

You are important. You matter. Your work that God has called you to do matters. You are His precious workmanship and a pearl of great price. Do not be discouraged but keep the faith.

Galatians 6:9
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.

2 Thessalonians 3:13
But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary in doing good.

Lord, be with our Christians in New Orleans and all disaster areas. Encourage those who are frustrated. Be with us and renew our purpose and our strength as we seek You. Forgive us and guide us. Thank you for making us with a plan and a purpose. In Jesus name. Amen.

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