Month: June 2015
In response to today’s court ruling legalizing gay marriage in the U.S., I’d like to share my opinion. God loves everyone. No exceptions. That being said, he doesn’t love our sin. Think of it this way: God feels the same way about sinners as we do about burgers that give us indigestion. He loves them but He doesn’t love what they do. Homosexuality is a sin. The Bible says so. It was homosexuality that led to the demise of Sodom and Gomorrah. Just because the homosexuals are celebrating sin doesn’t mean we should stop loving them. If anything, it means we should love them more. They need us to show them the love of God. If we go on persecuting them, then they’ll go on believing that God is a God of hatred. That’s not true. God wants us to love homosexuals just as he does. As I’m typing this, I’m sitting in a room with a gay guy who I have come to know over the past few weeks. He is a very kind man. He has a wonderful personality. Being gay doesn’t make him any less amazing. We all sin. None of us should be identified by our sin. Imagine having to constantly wear a sticker with your biggest sin on it. Imagine being called by that sin. Would you like that? No. Then why is it that we look at homosexuals and only think ‘gay?’ They are so much more than that! They have personalities! They have talents and passions! Just like the rest of us. The only difference is that they wear their sin on their sleeve, without realizing it’s a sin. Our job is not to point out that sin and terrorize them for it. No! Our job is to show them God’s love. However, God does want us to confront them about their sin. Galatians 6:1 says, “If someone is caught in any sin, you as a follower of Christ should restore that person with a gentle spirit.” Gentle spirit. Do it with love! Not condemnation! I will admit that I have had a bitter attitude towards homosexuals in the past. Except I see now that won’t change anything. Love will. God’s love will.
My church is a good size. There’s not an overwhelming amount of people, but it’s not too small either. I go to the early service with all the older people. The music is usually hymns, and I love it. Then my Sunday school is divided up into small groups by gender and grade, lead by one main speaker. The music is typically newer songs like the kind I have on my phone. I really enjoy the worship. About twice a month on Sundays, I sing with the worship band. It’s a great experience. I sometimes volunteer to help out with the little kids. And I like to serve when other opportunities arise. On Wednesday nights, I love the worship and listening to my pastor preach the message. We aren’t the kind of church that is all focused on fun and games. We do have a pool table and ping pong and foosball, but we don’t let them get in the way of praising our God. Overall, I adore my church. I feel like it’s right where God wants me.
Favorite part about creation:
I really love humans. They are so complex, intricate. When I look at humans, when I look at myself, I just know that we have to have a creator. There’s no way that we all came about by chance. We were formed by a God who loved us enough to perfect every detail of us-inside and out. The way we think, act, and love all prove that we are the product of intelligent and loving design. And that is beautiful.
I spend a lot of time in my room. I do a lot in there. It’s where I think, write, do work, spend time with God. It’s like my sanctuary.
Place I want to visit:
London. Hands down. I’ve just recently developed a burning desire to go there. The city is so beautiful. Plus, I’ve heard it rains a lot. I love rain. It makes things grow and it’s just so peaceful and aesthetically pleasing. Also, I adore British accents. 🙂
In my eyes, being a Christian means believing in God, the creator of everything, and His one son Jesus, who was placed in the virgin Mary by the power of God. Believing that Jesus died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and rose from the dead 3 days later. Believing that Jesus ascended into Heaven and now sits at the right hand of God. Believing that the only way to God and Heaven is through Jesus Christ. Believing that we have the forgiveness of sins and have been given eternal life through Jesus, son of God. A significant part of being a Christian is witnessing to others. James 2:26 says that faith without works is dead. We must follow God’s call for us that is stated in Matthew 28:19-20: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
I’ve never been on a mission trip before. The church I’ve been at for the past 4 years is really big on mission trips. There are usually 3 or 4 over the summer-some group and some individual-and more throughout the rest of the year. The pressure on me to go on a mission trip is quite heavy from my youth pastor. I don’t really want to go on a mission trip because I feel like, if I did, I’d just be doing it to appease people, not because God called me to. I don’t feel like God has called me to missions. He gave me the gift of writing and I believe that’s how he wants me to reach the lost. I’m not opposed to missions (foreign or local), I just don’t feel like that’s what God wants me to do at this point in my life. That doesn’t mean that I won’t seize opportunities to witness to others. If God opens a door, I’ll walk through it. But, for now, I’m staying put.
I usually read the NIV (New International Version) because it is easiest for me to understand. I like the way that version phrases things. Sometimes, if I don’t understand a verse, I’ll switch to another translation. Some of my other go-to translations are HCSB (Holman Christian Standard Bible) and NLT (New Living Translation). A good translation to use when I want to see the overall picture is MSG (The Message). It’s easy to switch between versions on my phone. However, the only translation of a hard-copy Bible that I own is NIV.
My favorite hero in the Bible is David. Not only did he defeat Goliath with the power of God, but he also ran to God asking for forgiveness when he knew that he had messed up. Being a hero doesn’t mean you’re perfect, it means you’re strong enough to admit when you’ve done something wrong.
My story begins with one of my earliest memories. I was 8 years old sitting in the backseat of my family’s minivan on the way home from church. I asked my mom why she was always so happy and she said that it was because she had the joy of the Lord. I told her that I wanted to have that joy too. It was then that I first accepted Christ into my heart. I had the faith of a child. Years later, when I was 11 years old, I began struggling with a sin that is still a struggle for me today, 5 years later. In 2011, I went to the Baptist church camp Falls Creek for the first time. One night during the invitation after the service I decided to rededicate my life to Christ. I felt like up until then I had just been going through the motions, and I felt like I was finally at the point where I could truly understand what it meant to follow Christ. There’s a lyric in a Jamie Grace song called You Lead that reminds me of my testimony: ‘As a child I heard your voice. But as a girl I made my choice. There is no other way for me. I’m devoted to you.’ After I rededicated my life, I started really living for Christ. In fact, for 6 months, I was clean of that sin that was holding me down. I wish I could say that rededicating my life to Christ eternally demolished that sin in my life, but I can’t. I have changed though. Radically. I have the joy and peace of Jesus Christ who died so that I may have life. I often wonder what my life would be like if I weren’t a Christian. I am convinced that I probably wouldn’t be here right now if it weren’t for God saving me. I’ve been through a lot in my life, and it has dragged me down. If I didn’t have God to pick me back up, then I probably wouldn’t have made it this far. That scares me. To think that I might’ve ended my life years ago if it weren’t for God. And if I had then I would’ve spent my eternity in Hell. Now, through the never ending grace and unfathomable love of God, I get to spend my eternity in Heaven. And while I’m still here on this earth, I will live my life for the God who rescued me from death.