Archive for joy

The Cross (Good Friday)

Posted in following Jesus, God, Holiday with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 22, 2011 by rylanreed

Today is a solemn day, but a joyous one because of Jesus Christ dying on the cross for the sins of the world.  The sins of everyone that has lived on this earth and will live before Christ comes back on that glorious day, He took it all so we could be able to live with Him in Heaven someday.    These are Jesus’ words and a description of the night before:

Matthew 26:39 “‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.'”

Mark 14:36 “‘Abba, Father, all things are possible for you. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.'”

Luke 22:44 “And being in an agony He prayed more earnestly; and His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.”

And Jesus on the cross:

Matthew 27:46 “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli, Eli, Lema sabachthani?’ that is, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

There was a time when I was younger, (and I’m sure others’ have as well), I used to think that when Christ prayed and sweated blood in Gethsemane, he was not wanting to go through the torture that was going to happen on the cross. And when Christ was on the cross it came to a point where it was too much to bear.  That was my perception because Christ was human, God becoming man, and having to go through all of the suffering; I know I could not have handled it and I’m sure no one else really could.

I’ve grown to understand, and heard it again a few weeks back, that it was way more than just the physical pain.  God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit have all been together, so when Jesus came to the point of the cross and His crucifixion, he knew what was going to happen that had never happened before.  Because of God’s love for us, He sent His Son down to die for our sins, being blameless and without sin, was able to take on all the sins of the world.  But because God hates sin soo much, He could not be able to bear to see His Son with the sins of the world on His shoulders.  God is perfect and he can not bear to be near to sin, so when Christ was put on the cross, God had to turn His back on His one and only Son.  Jesus loved us soo much that he gave up His connection with the Father to give us a chance to live with Him forever in Heaven.  He did a work that I couldn’t have done myself, and no one else could, because He loves me (and you) with everything.

Let us remember what He has done for our lives. Let us take the time to be still and wait on His love. Let us stop what we are doing and praise Him who took on what we could never have accomplished by ourselves. Let us remember HIM!

(the link is a sermon, about an hour in length, and the part on this starts around the 46th minute. I would recommend listening to all of it, if you have the time)

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His Remembrance

Posted in books, following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 23, 2009 by rylanreed

“And I will remember My covenant” Genesis 9:15

Mark the form of the promise. God does not say, “And when ye shall look upon the bow, and ye shall remember my covenant, then I will not destroy the earth,” but it is gloriously put, not upon our memory, which is fickle and frail, but upon God’s memory, which is infinite and immutable. “The bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant.” Oh! it is not my remembering God, it is God’s remembering me which is the ground of my safety; it is not my laying hold of his covenant, but his covenant’s laying hold on me. Glory be to God! the whole of the bulwarks of salvation are secured by divine power, and even the minor towers, which we may imagine might have been left to man, are guarded by almighty strength. Even the remembrance of the covenant is not left to our memories, for we might forget, but our Lord cannot forget the saints whom he has graven on the palms of his hands. It is with us as with Israel in Egypt; the blood was upon the lintel and the two side-posts, but the Lord did not say, “When you see the blood I will pass over you,” but “When I see the blood I will pass over you.” My looking to Jesus brings me joy and peace, but it is God’s looking to Jesus which secures my salvation and that of all his elect, since it is impossible for our God to look at Christ, our bleeding Surety, and then to be angry with us for sins already punished in him. No, it is not left with us even to be saved by remembering the covenant. There is no linsey-wolsey here—not a single thread of the creature mars the fabric. It is not of man, neither by man, but of the Lord alone. We should remember the covenant, and we shall do it, through divine grace; but the hinge of our safety does not hang there—it is God’s remembering us, not our remembering him; and hence the covenant is an everlasting covenant. C.H. Spurgeon Morning and Evening, Evening August 13

What a great thing to grasp, that we don’t have to remember all the time or try and remind God of what He told us with the convent of old.  He remembers and will always remember, not letting one of His children out of His sight and out of His controlling, comforting hands.  We don’t have to do anything, and we didn’t DO anything to deserve this, since us and this world is all for the glory of God and His covenant allows us to be apart of His plan for world redemption.

Thrown seed

Posted in following Jesus, God with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2009 by rylanreed

Most people might know the parable of the seeds and the sower.  It was probably said to you in Sunday School or something like that, and it was all nice and cutesy like.  I am going to look at this paragraph in two different ways, and hopefully will bring a little insight into some-one’s life.  one will be about the differences between the four and specifically one grouping, and the other will talk about how we can use that parable in our lives today. In Matthew 13, as well as Mark 4 and Luke 8, there is an interesting parable told by Jesus about why some people’s lives are wasted and unreachable. The parable sort of goes like this in the condensed version: A farmer goes out to seed his fields and there are four different places that the seeds get thrown too; on the path, on rocky ground, among thorns and then on good soil.  the short interpretation would be that we give in either to fleshly temptations, the pressure of the world or to the enemy; and then finally to God.

The first seed that fell on the path and were eaten by birds, are this kind of a person Jesus said, “When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path.” (Matthew 13:19) In South Africa, these would be the people that believe in ancestral worship or in creation and not a creator, or those that just believe in other religions.  It could also be the people that focus hole heartily on school work and making good grades, or wanting to do the things that they want to do and not caring too much into the future. Their focus is on something totally wrong and different than what it needs to be and Satan uses that for his benefit.

The second seed that fell on rocky ground, springing up really quick, but without any substance,  wilted and died are these kind of people Jesus said, “As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, 21yet he has no root in himself, by endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away.” (Matthew 13:20-21) In South Africa, these would be a lot of people that might lean towards prosperity gospel or students not wanting to offend a westerner that has come over 10,000 miles to tell them something important.  They might receive it with joy and get excited, but then the trial comes and is placed on their laps, giving them a choice to show others and Christ that He is their all. To often, the opposite happens and they fall back into the way they had been living before, because it was either easier or comfortable.

The last, or unfruitful, seed that fell among the thorns and choked them out, are these kind of people Jesus said, “As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.” (Matthew 13:22) In South Africa, this might be a combination of the last two where people feel that things happen by chance and they are the one’s that control their own life and lifestyle. They are also concerned with the world and worldly things, wanting more of power, money, fame, and attention; too the extent that it overtakes their minds and hearts and nothing can really get to them except something drastic.

I will try to explain what these three different seeds mean to me and how they relate to the big picture, but the people dipicted here are a lot of what we deal with each and everyday. Not to say that these people are only found here, they are all over the world and especially in the great country of money, the United States. We are still called to try and reach them, but the greatness of it all is that it doesn’t totally depend on us for their salvation.

The Cross

Posted in following Jesus, God, Video with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 25, 2009 by rylanreed

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Hebrews 12:2

Christ is our Savior and Lord, and it is only through Him and the Cross that we can be saved and live forever in Heaven with God.  How blessed are those that have taken the grace that has been given by Christ, even though no one deserves it at all, only death and separation.  But Christ came and died on that wonderful wooden cross, so that those who are called to His name can live for Him and bless His holy name in all that they do.

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”  1 Corinthians 10:31

Psalm 32

Posted in God with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 5, 2009 by rylanreed

This is something that you can pray through and reflect on throughout this week. Let this Psalm speak to you during this week about sin and forgiveness. Reflect on what God has brought to the light and has taught you through your sins.

Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man against whom the Lord counts no iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit. For when I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to you at a time when you may be found; surely in the rush of great waters, they shall not reach him. You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Be not like a horse or a mule, without understanding, which must be curbed with a bit and bridle, or it will not stay near you. Many are the sorrows of the wicked, but steadfast love surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord. Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, O righteous, and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.”

Fallen into a pit

Posted in Culture, following Jesus, God, Music, South Africa Stint with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on March 30, 2009 by rylanreed

Lecrae: Rebel — Desperate ft. Cam

Verse 1:  (Lecrae)
Woke up this morning too depressed and shamed to leave my bed / Can’t stand to see my own reflection so I hang my head / feel like a disappointment like the scum of the earth / I’m so hurt I know you see I can’t cover my dirt
my souls dying hearts weak and I cant even cry / I’m sposed to run to you but WHY I’m such an evil guy
The sun’s shining but for me it’s the darkest of days / Try to pretend it never happened but the guilt remains
I leave the house it feels like everybody knows I did it / Feel like they reading my mind and know the sin I committed
Through your blood I’m acquitted but my heart doesn’t get it / Oh God I’m desperate for Help cause I’m grieving your Spirit / I couldn’t sing in the sunday service, Lord I felt fake / and when they started communion I just made an escape / I’m in need of your grace/ feels like you hid your face / Lord Lead me back to cross and show me my sins erased

Hook:  (Cam)
I’m so desperate; I can’t believe I’ve sinned against you
Create in me a clean heart (I’m so sorry)
Your mercy is what I need

Verse 2:  (Lecrae)
I’m waste deep in my pity/ Is Satan tryna trick me and tell me you wont forgive me
cause it’s startin to get me/ Jesus help me quickly I hate the wrong I’ve done/ I know we all fall but I feel like the only one/ Feels like I should be shunned/ should I punish myself/ I know it’s dumb cause by your death all my sin has been dealt/ But my sin is been felt/ I didn’t want to do it/ but what I want to do I don’t/ I swear I’m goin through it/ I’m tryna open up my bible need to read your pages/ need you Lord but my guilt has got me feeling so faithless/ Help me see where grace is/ take me back to the basics/ help me find my joy in you and not people and places/ my sin is ever before me I turned my back on you/ Oh father break and restore me to bring me back to you/my sin is ever before me I turned my back on you/ God break and restore me to bring me back to you

Hook:

Verse 3:  (Lecrae)
have mercy on me God according to your steady love / wipe away my transgressions and wash me in your blood
Create in me a clean heart renew a right spirit / Don’t hide your face from me God/ your Presence keep me near it
I’m waiting patience on you Lord i know you hear my cry / Restore your Joy in me/ for you alone I live and die/
It’s you I Glorify cause you don’t want my sacrifice/ you want me broken and contrite trusting in the Christ/ I confess to you my sin and you show me mercy/ I turn away from it demonstrating that you are worthy/ over lust, over pride, over all sin/ is my affection for Jesus who died for all them/ I was lost now I’m found I was toss to the ground/ My sin weighed on me heavy but I am no longer bound/ As sure as Christ wear the crown/ I know that grace will abound/ And even when I feel lost I know in You I am found/

I feel this a lot, and I think that others do as well.  This STINT year has really opened my eyes to some sins that I commit, that I never really saw before until now.  It’s God’s way of bringing us back to Him, we just need to realize that we do sin, that it is our human nature to do that, and only by repenting of our sins and turning full and complete attention to Christ, will we come out of the rut that we are in.

“14But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.” James 1:14-15

I have heard from some that Satan is really battling with us as we are on STINT, and in countries that God is trying to start a work in for His glory.  Satan does tempt us, but it is our acceptance of the sin and our human nature to tend to lean towards those things that gets us into trouble.  If we would just realize that it is a sin and that we commit it, we would be trusting in Jesus and relying on His blood.  Instead, we “lean on our own understanding” and let Satan take control and so, do not let Jesus be the one and only that controls our lives.  Let us pray today that God will continually show us more of our sins, and that we would be repenting more and more, as we turn our hearts and eyes towards Christ!