Friday, March 17, 2017

Philippians 3:11
Attaining to the resurrection of the dead.  Dude this verse has me man.  I at first had absolutely no clue what it was talking about, then it hit me.  The rapture.  When we are Christians we attain the rapture.  We aren’t dead in sin and we are now alive.  The ones sleeping in the ground now will be resurrected from the dead and will join Christ in the air.  For the ones ones still alive, they will meet Christ in the air after that.  The Christian is not dead, just sleeping.  This earth is merely a place of which we pass through.  We should be so stoked about the rapture though and just looking forward to every moment of it. We should be looking for the things above, we should be ready for it to come any time and any day at any second.  Christ is coming back soon, it’s a matter of when though.  So today I will look forward to Christ coming back, I will think of the things above and be rapture ready.
Philippians 3:10
The power of His resurrection.  That’s one of the many things that separates us from the beliefs of the Roman Catholic Church.  The resurrection.  How often do we just throw that to the back seat?  The fact Jesus overcame death.  We are quick to share that He died for us, but the true miracle was that He arose and overcame death.  Death can’t even trump the life of my God.  Jesus was not bound by death.  Jesus suffered for me.  He took my place on the cross and died, it truly is the most amazing thing ever, but He also came back to life.  How sad would it be if the story ended with Christ on the cross and not coming back to life?  It wouldn’t be the gospel, God would be dead.  My God is alive though, He isn’t dead.  Death can’t pin Him down.  Him rising from the dead gives power to us that we can die for Him.  If persecution comes remember that He died and was raised from the grave for you.  We are not pressed down by death, it can’t hold us down.  Life on this earth is merely a fraction of what we will experience in eternity.  If I die for Christ, no if I live for Christ and am martyred for Him, what a way to go.  Death of the physical body is just the beginning of everlasting life that I am promised by Him and how sweet is that?  So today I will remember that I am to live for Christ, I can’t expect to die for Him, if I don’t first live for Him.  I must remember that there is power in the resurrection and not just His death.  Death is just the first part, then comes life and life abundantly.
Philippians 3:9
All my life I thought myself as righteous.  In my own eyes I was a good person.  This is religion.  Religion is nothing.  Having the right relationship and making it a personal one with the Lord is what He views as good.  Keeping the law is cool and all, but the law of Grace is what abides in me.  Out of my faith in Christ works are produced, but doing works isn’t what saves me.  I can’t do enough good to cover my bad.  Also even I mess up once than I deserve Hell.  I am judged by faith and faith alone.  Thank God He took my spot on the cross for me.  I am so undeserving of His love for me yet He poured it out for me.  I am curious of why He chose the worm that I am for His usage, but He knows why and I know that I am the perfect tool for what He has for me. So for eighteen years of my life I was religious, I was under the bondage of my religion.  Christianity should be refreshing not holding me down.  Christ saved me from drowning, He didn’t hold my head under water.  Religion sucks, religion kills, religion made me miserable.  Christ saves us from religion and wants us in a relationship.  He loves us and we love Him because He loves us.  His love is unconditional, mine is completely conditional, until I rely on Him to help me not have conditions on my love.  I will wrap this up with one word, Grace.
Now to apply this grace to my life.  I love everyone on team Uganda.  Beyond that I love everyone in this ministry, but for Team Uganda, I can often put conditions on my love towards each of you.  If I am annoyed I won’t love you as much as I should.  So today I will lay down my pride, if I am annoyed I will love each of you as much as I should.  I will try to love unconditionally.
Philippians 3:8
Everything I own is garbage.  All is vanity.  Anything of this world, is as dust in the wind just blowing about.  My money, my Sandals, my clothes, my bicycles…Anything in this world.  If it’s not getting me closer to God than it’s just a waste.  Does it suck sometimes to give things up for Christ?  Yes, sometimes when you give things up it does, like no more smoking my pipe or cigars.  It’s enjoyable and relaxing, but does it bring me closer to God?  No, but does it bring others closer to Him?  Uhhhhh No.  Paul says he counts it as loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Jesus Christ.  Sacrificing can be tough, but when you think about the sacrifice that Christ made for me, it is easy.  Paul then goes on to say he counts it as dung, literally garbage.  The things of this world is garbage.  Solomon in Ecclesiastes counts all things of this world as garbage, he lives his life in extreme wealth, then he at the end of his life looks back and sees anything without God as garbage.  If I see this now as everything of this world as just garbage, than I will be on a solid path.  Sacrifice my worldly possessions for Christ.  Today I will think of one thing I can give away, like a pair of shoes and then on Saturday at the outreach I will throw them out. 
Romans 12:16
I can’t do this verse without looking. at the verse above.  “Rejoice with those that rejoice, and weep with those that weep.”  That is how we are of the same mind as others.  We are not to put ourselves above others.  We can not achieve unity when I am better than everyone else.  We can not achieve unity if I think of myself as higher than you.  Unity is achieved when we are equal at the cross.  This takes back to two weeks ago, mutual submission.  Through mutual submission, which is at the cross through Christ…We achieve Unity.  When we are of the same mind we achieve unity.  On a complete other note, being in the same mind we get unity.  What does it mean to be of the same mind?  In Philippians 2:5-8, 
“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who being in the form of God thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

That’s the mindset that gives unity.  When we are willing to serve and when we are willing to die for our cause.  The church can be the greatest showing of unity ever, but how often do we just argue over stupid stuff and just cause nothing but disunity?  All the time.  We need to all look at ourselves as equals at the cross and then that will cause unity.  So today, I will lay down my pride.  When I see someone screw up, instead of me thinking higher of myself, I will look at myself as lower.  Only then can I have unity.
Matthew 18:15
If someone sins against you go to them and them alone in a humble attitude.  I can’t go in an attitude of a, “Hey what’s wrong with you?” type of attitude.  I have to go in an attitude of restoring the relationship.  I have to put my self under the other too.  I as a human have this thing called pride.  Pride sucks and makes me want to be better than everyone else.  I have to go with an attitude of me being worse.  We all have sin so I have to expect others to sin too.  My life is no greater than everyone else’s so people are gonna be like me and mess up.  I can’t imagine how often I irritate others.  Christian came up to me in Xelah probably like 100 times and it was all one on one and just him telling me when I screwed up.  Which was quite often.  I am glad he came in an attitude of restoration too.  Now we are boys again, and in the midst of sin we can’t be as tight, but in the biblical attitude he came in we can be tight again.  Xelah wrecked me, Xelah showed me how much of a mess up I am, but then it also showed me how to be a biblical friend.  Now we are united once more and we are buddies again.  So today if someone irritates me I will go Ain an attitude of restoration, I will go in with an attitude of love and trying to be reunited with someone.  
Amos 3:3
Can two walk together except they be agreed?  The answer is no.  If two people are in an argument they aren’t going to try and walk with one another.  Unless they are trying to bring forth a resolution and then they wouldn’t really by arguing at that point.  When I am in an argument with someone, I am not in the best standings with them.  I can think back to times when I was in arguments with friends and we weren’t as close as we usually are.  Like my friend Brian and I were in this big argument and heated text messages were going back and forth.  We definitely weren’t the best of friends for the few days we were arguing.  The friendship was sense restored, but at that point of arguing we weren’t super close.  There has been other times too where I had other friends that I have argued with, oh like senior trip I got into a fight with my friend Colin.  We were so mad at each other and it’s still awkward between us.  The relationship has not been fully restored, two can’t walk when there is not an agreement.  So next time I have wifi I will text Colin and see what is going on with him and apologize for my end of the argument to try and restore the relationship.
2 Corinthians 13:11
When we are of one mind we have unity.  In unity comes the peace and love of God.  Only in unity we can have these.  We can not obtain Peace and love without being united with God.  Also when we are united with God, we become united with each other.  To bring unity we also have to comfort one another.  If my brother or sister is upset they need to be comforted and through this comes unity.  Just as I’m writing this IBS, I am late with it.  This was supposed to be done for yesterday, but I am a little back on homework…Anthony could obviously see I was a little stressed out and he came over to comfort me.  That is what Christians are called to do.  Anthony and I are united through him comforting me in my times of struggles.  Through this unity comes the peace and love of God.  This is an amazing thing for the body.  What other religion does something like this?  Like they see someone hurting, help them and then feel unity together.  It’s a thing of Christ, and not this world.  We aren’t called to be of this world, but to Christ.  So today I will thank Anthony for the comfort.  I will apologize for pushing him away during this process, and God will bring unity through this.
1 John 1:5-7
The age old rivalry, Light vs Darkness.  I used to be in the darkness, I used to not know the light.  When you are in a dark place, you can vaguely see the light ahead, but you don't know it.  I am a christian now though.  So I am in the light, the light of God.  If one is part of the darkness, they don’t know God.  God is perfect and can’t have any sin in Him.  So when I come to Him, I am cleansed, He doesn’t see me as what I actually am, which is dirty and rotten.  Rotten to the Core.  I like how Paul puts it in Romans 7:24-25- 
O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from this body of death?  
I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.  So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh, the law of sin.
It’s that constant struggle between fighting off the darkness wit Jesus Christ, to be in perfect unity with Him inside the light.  I have to always be fighting my flesh.  My flesh is strong.  My flesh is 19 years of pure pride and sinfulness just waiting for the next temptation to come my way so I may stumble and go into the darkness, but God.  God gave me my new nature when I came to Him.  Also the Spirit dwells in me, I am in the light now and I can flee from wickedness.  I don’t have to sin.  Paul says again in Romans 6:1-2-
What shall we say then?  Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?
God forbid! How shall we who are dead to sin, live any longer there in?

God forbid I keep sinning so grace may abound.  So today I will think of Romans 6:1-2 every time I am knowledgeably sinning.  Since I am wicked I don’t always know that I am sinning, it just naturally happens, I am not always going out of my way to do wrong, but when I do go out of my way to do wrong…I will dwell on these two verse.
Luke 17:7-10
A servant doesn’t finish his job until all the master says he is done.  After a long day of working in the field, he wouldn’t come in and complain if the master had another job for him.  No matter how much gets added on, he won’t be finished until the master says so.  In the same way, God can keep giving us more and more.  So much stuff that we can’t handle, unless we rely 100% on God.  That is the whole point too.  We have to rely on God.  I can’t do a single task on myself, I need God to help me.  I need His strength and not my own.  This is also with serving others.  Like yesterday I had K.P., but Austin told the class to call home and tell about the flights being ordered.  I could’ve done both if I was relying on Christ.  However I was relying on myself and only got K.P. done.  I messed up.  I shouldn’t have relied on my own strength, but the strength of God.  Both jobs weren’t completed so I was an unfaithful servant.  Only when the days work is done may the servant relax.  So today I won’t relax until all my work is done of me.  I will do all tasks of me and rely on the strength of God and not my own.  I will do all my serving when it’s asked and with God’s strength I will do all my tasks.
Luke 12:37-40
Being on KP this week, it really just shows this verse in a different way.  When doing the dishes you have to clean the whole plate and the whole cup and the whole fork, but you really have to scrub the inside of the cup the top of the plate and the head of the fork.  This is due to the fact it’s the dirtiest part.  The most impurities are not going to be on the bottom of the plate.  It’s going to be on the top part which was used.  The Pharisees were so outwardly clean.  They were so religious, but on the inside.  They were spiritually dead.  They had nothing.  They were. like the lepers, unclean and dying.  Religion kills, religion causes death, but a relationship in Jesus brings forth life.  Life abundantly.  Religion cleans the outside, but Christ cleans the inside.  For my entire life I was a pharisee, I was clean on the outside, I was religious, but then Christ changed me when I found out I could make it a real life relationship.  During senior year I started making my walk a relationship.  It was weak, but it was then I realized that I was just religious my entire life.  Until Ignite I was religious, Ignite has helped me start to kill the religion of Christianity.  I am starting to not be so religious, I am starting to build a relationship with the Father.  I’ve learned Grace here, which helps clean the inward man, and helps you die to yourself.  You can’t have grace and pride coinciding, pride doesn’t let you admit you screwed up, but grace knows you did and forgives you even though you don’t deserve it.  So today, I will clean my inside out by praying to God and confessing sins to Him asking Him to derive me of it.  I will ask for His help for my insides to be cleaned.
John 15:15
Jesus is talking to the apostles and calls them friends instead of servants.  He tells them a servant doesn’t know what is going on, but a friend is given the information.  They have been given the information.  Also they all serve beside Jesus.  Jesus is a servant with them, so they are all servant friends.  We are given all the information so we are friends of Jesus, we serve with Him and for Him too.  It’s a different perspective the fact that Jesus calls us friends because we are given the information in His word.  He doesn’t look down upon us.  He doesn’t tower over us, which He could do and be in the right, He is God.  No He is our friend, He is our ally.  Who do we go to in times of trouble?  Enemies or friends?  That’s right, friends.  We go to the ones who care for us, and they won’t attack us in our weakness.  We go to Jesus who wants our vulnerability.  So today if I have trouble with anything: Mentally, Physically, Spiritually, or Emotionally…I will go to a friend and pour out what is wrong to them.
John 12:26
Pretty easy right?  To serve Christ one must follow Him first.  If I want to truly serve, I must be a follower of Christ.  I mean Christ is the greatest example of a servant, like ever.  He is God, yet He came down to earth, in a super humble way, being born in a manger.  Then He lived His whole life serving people, who should be serving Him.  Then He goes and dies on a cross and raises up from the dead for them, for me and you.  That is serving.  So if I want to serve, I must take up His example.  I have to make myself lower than others.  I must crucify myself, I have to die to the flesh everyday.  Where Christ is, is where His servant is.  What Christ did, we should do too.  I mean obviously we can’t do a lot He did, but the attitudes He showed.  Love, obedience, humility… We need to show too.  This is how I can be a servant.  The verse closes with Jesus saying, “If any man serve me, him will my Father honor.”  If I do these things, and I serve Christ.  I will be honored by God.  I don’t need earthly honoring.  God the Father honors me.  Which is far superior to earthly honoring.  So today I will follow Christ’s example and serve others.  I will help with extra dishes that are just left in the sink, and if people leave cups out I will wash them.  Also I will put furniture away too.

Monday, February 27, 2017

1 Corinthians 12:14-15
We are all of the body of Christ.  We are all one church.  It does not matter: Race, Residency, Gender, Age, or anything.  If you accept the gospel message and you are a Christian, then you are apart of the body of Christ.  I can't make the body of Christ by myself.  No, it takes the collection of the believers.  It takes our brothers and sisters in the States, Mexico, Guatemala, Canada, Uganda, Cambodia, Jamaica.  It takes the believers around the world to make up the body of Christ.  Also it doesn’t matter if I’m a foot, or a hand, or just a single leg hair.  I just want a spot.  In heaven if all I get is the scraps from the table, then I’ll be joyous because at least I have a spot in the glory of God.  Also each body part has a different purpose.  A hand can’t just move around on it’s own.  No it must be attached to the rest of the body.  Like Christian said, “We are like the Power Rangers.  Sure we are cool by ourselves, but we need to be with one another and connect to one another to defeat the enemy.”  This is cool if you really think about it.  Apart from the rest of the believers I’m weak.  They feed into me, they plug into me.  I am made stronger by the challenges they put me up to.  It’s all for Jesus, but they are plugging into me.  So today, I will try and be closer to my fellow body members.  I will not trust in myself to defeat the enemy, but rather rely on the body to help me defeat him.  For I am weak by myself, but with Christ and the body, I am stronger.
Ephesians 5:21
What does it mean to submit?  Webster says to accept or yield to a superior force or to the authority or will of another person.  We know that yielding to this force is yielding to God, but what about the other person?  That’s the harder one.  Submitting to God we know He will do nothing to harm us, only to prosper us.  He knows what we need and will provide it, if I need to be humbled He will do so.  Praise be to God for that too.  On the other hand though is people.  People can really suck man.  Talk about a tough commandment.  We are called to submit to others because we’re all equal at the cross.  In this submission we are to serve people no matter what person and no matter what they do.  I mean the perfect example is Jesus.  First of all He’s God and for whatever reason He decided to come down to earth just to serve.  Doesn't make any sense to me in my carnal mind, but He is God so He knows best.  He not just came down to serve, but He served the unrighteousness.  He served the dirtiest of the scum of the earth.  Christ washed the feet of Judas, He knew Judas was in the process of betraying Him.  It wasn’t a surprise, yet He showed him love still.  Yet He submitted to Judas still.  He put Himself under Judas.  Wow.  I mean if I knew I had a friend, and we become super close.  Like living together and walking together for like three years everyday.  Then one day he would sell me out for something I never did for like a fifty dollar bill.  I would be pissed.  I would definitely not be washing that dudes feet.  I for sure would not submit.  I would think of myself so much higher, but I’m not.  We’re all equal at the cross.  I have to keep that in my mind while witnessing and serving and just my daily life.  I am the lowest of the earth.  I am a wretch, but at the cross I am the same as kings.  So today, I will submit to all.  I will serve if someone needs it.  If someone is struggling with their bag on the 600 stair hike, I will carry it for them.  Not in my glory.  It won’t be a, “Hey look at Micah, he has five peoples bags on him, he is so good.”  No it will be all for God and out of submission towards my classmates.  I will be submitting towards all.  
Galatians 5:13
In Christ I am free.  I have different freedoms too.  I have the freedom to spoke my pipe, but I am also free to not do so.  Is smoking fulfilling my flesh, or was it serving my fellow brothers?  I don’t recall a time where it was helpful towards witnessing, nor did it build anyone up.  I am told to serve by love.  I am told not to use my liberty’s as a carnal fulfillment.  If  by smoking I am being a stumbling block, than I am not serving either.  I am not called to live in the flesh, no I am called to share the gospel.  I am called to speak His words.  I am called to serve my brother.  So if I am unable to do any of those because I am smoking and it’s distracting others, than I need to stop and grow up.  I am free to smoke, but I am free to not smoke.  I am free to not watch movies that might stumble another body member.  Or listen to music that isn’t going to edify.  I am free to do all of these, but the cooler freedom is to not do so, because of the return instead.  Yes, if I see a funny movie, I will be happy for a little bit, but if I’m out serving and just loving others, I will be joyous for even longer.  So, today I will look for freedoms that are in my life that are just filling my flesh and turn it around for the opposite.  I will pray about it and ask for God to do His work in my life.
1 Corinthians 9:22
To the weak I became the weak.  I am not to become the even stronger.  I am to become the weak.  I am to bend down to where they are and hurt with them.  I am to be weak so God can be strong.  If someone is hurting due to a loss, I should hurt with them and comfort them.  Believer or unbeliever.  Paul finishes the verse saying, “That I might, by all means save some.”  The whole mindset I should have in this process is to lead people to Christ.  Comfort them with the gospel.  Share the love of Christ.  I am not able to do anything in my power except mess things up.  I need to not speak my words, but allow the Spirit to move and speak through me.  If someone is hurting, I need to hurt to and love them so they might come to Christ, not so I will be thanked or glorified, but so they might come to Christ.  Christ will give them rest.  I can’t provide it.  So today, I will become weak.  I will become all things to all men so I might present the gospel.  If someone is tired, I will be tired.  If someone is in need of rest, I will also be in need of rest.  I will do so by asking for a filling of the Spirit and to ask God to make me all things to all men.
Romans 15:1
The strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak.  If someone is struggling with a sin that the Lord helped me to overcome, I should help my weaker brother in the same.  I know in my life my tongue is a weak area.  I tend to use it to tear down instead of edification.  Edifying gives life, but my lips are often used to poison and destroy.  So I need to go to a stronger brother.  I need to have discipleship in the area of building up.  Someone who mastered this area, that they can help bear my infirmity.  Then say I overcome this area in my life, I need to bear the burden for someone else.  I need to show them how to.  I need to lead them to the cross.  Then if they overcome it, they need to help someone else too.  Also in the whole process the person bearing the burden, mustn’t become head strong.  They can not brag about how good they are and that they are better because they don’t destroy peoples joy anymore.  They need to be humble, and they need to be loving.  Also when the other person through God overcomes the sin, they can’t brag that they made that person overcome the sin.  No, it was God and not man.  Man sucks.  Man is wicked, but God is perfect.  We need God to help us with our issues.  When I read this verse I see a crippled dude in the streets fall over and he can’t get up.  I then see a healthy dude come over and pick him up and help him walk again.  In the same way this is how Christianity should be walked out.  We have to help the crippled man walk again.  Today I will keep being discipled by the whole program.  I will let them mold me.  I am the crippled man and Potter’s Field is in the process of picking me up.  I won’t fight them picking me up I need help walking again.  
Hebrews 13:17
Obey them that have rule over you.  In this season of my life I must submit to Potter’s Field.  This IBS is going to be very repetitive of yesterday’s for me, but it’s what God has placed in my life.  I am a servant to Potter’s Field at the moment, they have complete control over me, well in godly choices, but I wouldn’t expect anything different of them.  Submission is really easy when you think about it.  You either allow someone to rule over you and you do as they say, or you remain in control of your life and I know for me if I’m in control during this season I’ll screw stuff up so I’ll submit to Potter’s Field.  First I must submit to the Lord and then Potter’s Field though.  Giving God 100% control over me and then Potter’s Field.  The verse goes on to say that the must give an account for you, and they want to make it joyful and not grievous.  I want to do the best I can this year, I don’t want to disappoint Potter’s Field.  They have invested a lot into my life.  Time, Money, Godly men, and a whole lot more.  Even in just half of my training I feel my walk with the Lord has not just been added to, but multiplied by.  So thanks to God and Potter’s Field.  I hope I can be one of the interns that at the end of the year they may be joyous about and not grievous.  So today, I will lay down my flesh at the foot of the cross, I will lay down my pride and allow my authority to have all control over me.  I have to pray for submission first to God and secondly Potter’s Field.
Ephesians 6:1+Colossians 3:20

Children are told to obey their parents, in the Lord.  The key is to obey in the Lord.  If my parents tell me to do something unbiblical I’m not called to obey them then, which we saw in Acts 5:29.  To obey my parents.  I’m not under my parents roof at the moment so it’s not really that easy to obey them, but I am under the roof of Potter’s Field, they are my parents at the moment.  Yes not actually my parents, but they are in charge of me currently.  So it is my responsibility to listen to Potter’s Field.  Then the two verses vary a little.  In Ephesians it says, for this is right.  In Colossians it says, for it pleases the Lord.  When I obey my parents or in this case Potter’s Field, it is pleasing to God.  God is pleased when I obey.  Also in the ten commandments a promise is involved when I obey my parents.  That my days may be long upon the earth.  It is the first commandment with a promise.  And if there is one thing  know of God and His promises is, He keeps them.  He does not turn His back on me or anyone He makes a promise with.  So if I want to be apart of God’s promises and please Him, I must obey my authority.  Today, I will listen to my authoritative figures and obey them.  If I’m told to set up Chapel chairs, I will do so.  If I’m told to get more dinner plates, I will do so.  If I’m told to change the water jug, I will do so.  I will obey my “parents” in the Lord.
Romans 6:16

If I obey sin, then I am a slave to sin.  If I obey God, than I am a slave to righteousness.  I’m only able to be a slave to one of the options though, and I’d rather it be God.  There is nothing in the world of sin for me.  Sin leads to death, while God leads to life.  Not just life on earth, but everlasting life of which I am in my creators presence.  Being a slave to God, doesn’t necessarily mean I am going to have a great life on earth, but God will provide for my needs.  If I am a slave to sin, I will have fun, but only for a season.  The joy of serving the Lord is everlasting.  Serving the Lord is tough, but to spend an eternity with God is worth every moment of earthly toughness.  The toughness of serving the Lord gives me character.  Serving the world gives me nothing, but waste, vanity.  It’s as if dirt is blowing in the wind.  It means nothing.  I would much rather have character than dirt.  When one serves God it’s amazing how God can use them and for what reason blows my mind too.  I’m going to Uganda, I’m in Guatemala, I don’t deserve any of this.  I am an awful human being, I am dirt, but God for whatever reason chose me to be His vessel only because I was willing to submit to Him.  I wasn’t even fully submitted, I was just willing and then He worked on me.  I am probably not 100% submitted yet, but I am working on laying myself down.  I have to allow God to pin me and for me to just lay there and allow Him to be God.  I feel sometimes I know better, but He’s God so obviously He knows better.  So today I will pray for submission.  That I will allow God to work in my life and just be God, that He will have complete control over me like a horse and the bridle.  I want God to be my jockey and point me in whatever direction He pleases.  
Acts 5:29
To obey God vs to obey men.  I see this in the lives of Shad-Rack, Me-Shack, and Abednigo (Butchered those name, I apologize.)  Anyway, the three of them were told to bow down to the king, but they were told by God first that they were to only worship the Lord God almighty.  They were then cast into a fiery furnace for not obeying the Lord God almighty, but Jesus met them in the furnace and not even a single hair on there bodies were singed, the flames were so intense the dudes that threw them into the fire were killed by the flames, but those three were not even touched.  They were obedient to God and were rewarded due to this.  I also see this in the life of Daniel.  Daniel was obedient to God and prayed to Him, even though Nebuchadnezzar had a law decreed that said you could only pray to the king for 90 days.  Nebuchadnezzar only did this due to the jealousy of the other servants and Daniel being a favorite.  Anyway he was thrown into the den of hungry lions and God shut the mouthes of the lions.  Then after Daniel survived the night, to the delight of Nebuchadnezzar he threw the evil henchmen into the Lions den and they were chomped to bits.  Obedience man.  We are called to obey God, yes we are to obey men to, but if it does not agree to God then we aren’t to listen to them.  Anarchy isn’t the answer, but in the States abortion is legal, that doesn’t mean Christians should have abortions, we nee to listen to God and know every life is precious.  Weed is becoming more and more legal, but I don’t need to smoke pot.  I need to listen to God and not man.  So for application today, if I am told to do something unbiblical, I will listen to God and explain to them that it’s unbiblical.  I doubt that will happen in the Potter’s Field Walls, but if so.  I will listen to God and not man.
Hebrews 5:8
Obedience is learned through suffering.  Obedience is learned when after you screw up and are punished you don’t want to do it anymore.  If I’m told not to steal, but I go and steal someones bicycle and am sued for it, I am not going to steal someones bicycle again.  I learned obedience from suffering the amount of money lost during the law suit.  We learn obedience as children.  When we are told not to take the cookie from the jar, but we go and take it and get paddled for it, we start the connection of obedience, we will think twice before taking that cookie again.  There is a hymn that is kind of silly due to shouting out O-B-E-D-I-E-N-C-E, but it is really deep at the same time.  “Obedience is the very best way to show that you believe.”  Is the start of the song.  What a true statement that is.  Jesus was obedient and we want to be like Him, so when we obey, we show His character through us.  When we obey, Christ is on display.  The song goes on to say “Action is thew key do it immediately.”  This is obedience.  Obedience isn’t just listening and doing something someone tells you, but also doing it immediately.  So, today, I will practice obedience by listening to my authority immediately.  If Austin tells me to set up chapel chairs, I will do it as soon as asked even if it’s in the middle of meal time.  If Christian asks me to water the garden, I will get up and water the garden.  This goes with all my authority though, I will listen and do right away as soon as I’m asked.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Psalm 17:15
To behold God’s face, one must be in righteous.  I will be content when I awake in your likeness.  All it takes to be content is to be like God, but how can I be like God?  Well we see this in His word.  His many attributes: Peace, Provider, Protecter, Patient, Love, and so forth and so on.  Love though is super important.  In first John it says, “Let us love one another, for love is of God and anyone who liveth not, knoweth not God, for God is love.”  In order to be like God, I must be loving.  And if I’m like God, then I will finally be content.  It doesn’t say if I am God I’ll be content, Lucifer for example.  It says if I am like God.  If I have attributes of God in my life I will reach this contentment.  Also notice as he says, as I awake.  It’s a continual practice, it’s not gained at once, I want to be content.  I want these Godly attributes in my life, but how?  I must study the words of God and seek out what His attributes are.  Benjamin Franklin, I know not the best example, but he would write out different attributes of God and work at one at a time for once a month.  This is a good plan, but for him it was all vain as he was not a Christian, but for me I can apply this in my life by finding an attribute of God in the word and then apply it to my life.  For example today I will work on love, Godly Biblical love.  Instead of getting upset at someone I will love them selflessly.  If someone wants my Chikys (Haha I don’t have any). I will share them, or something along those lines.  I can only do this however by the help of God.  So I have to pray for God’s love to work through my life and let me love others as He did.
Philippians 4:11
Whatever state I’m in, I’m to be content.  Whether I’m rich, whether I’m poor.  Whether I have no arms or no legs, if I have no friends, no family, no body near me.  If I am dying of cancer, if I just won the Tour de France.  I’m to be content.  It’s not easy to be content in good or bad times both.  If I have no money, I want money.  If I have a million dollars it’s not enough.  I hate it.  I hate my flesh.  I hate that constant want for more, I crave more things in my life.  More money, more friends, more junk that I don’t need.  Paul says it though.  I have learned.  Which means I’m not too deep in my constant want of more junk to learn to be content.  Look at the life of Paul, he was on top.  He was the Super Jew, but then he went from top to bottom.  My hope and prayer is that someday I will learn this contentment.  That I will no longer want random useless junk in my life.  Today I will pray that I may learn this contentment in life.  I want to be content so God can better use me in life for His use.  If I find myself in the state of wanting more, I will back away from the situation and pray that God fixes my heart.
Hebrews 13:5
Wow, the conviction is real in this verse.  Let my conversation be without covetousness.  I have no clue how many times I complain to my friends about not having the newest and best thing.  Then when I see someone else have it, I get that heart attitude of, “Why do they have that.  They don’t deserve it, I do.”  For example this girl in high school had a GoPro like the new one super nice, but she literally just sits at home and does nothing all day.  I would complain with and to my friends like why does she have this camera?  It would be much better of a fit for me than her, I ride mountain bikes and could make cool videos while she just watches Netflix all day.  What a wrong attitude to have.  I’m told to be content with what I have.  I need not to be concerned on the things of others, but rather on godly things.  If God wanted to give me a GoPro, I would've had a GoPro, but instead I was festering on the inside of something that was none of my business.  Was I edifying her when I was complaining that she had a GoPro and I didn’t? No, I was tearing her down, also I was a gossip.  The verse ends with, “For He will never leave nor forsake thee.”  I was concerned about someone else being undeserving of something.  What an idiot.  If anyone didn’t deserve anything it was me and God’s grace.  I am so undeserving, but yet He decided to die for me even though I literally bring nothing to the table but constant screw ups.  Yet He will never leave me nor forsake me.  There isn’t going to be a day where I have finally reached my trillionth mistake and God is like, “Okay that’s it, I’m done with you.”  No, He will never leave nor forsake me.  In fact in 2 Corinthians 12:9 Jesus says, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”  So today I will be content with all.  When I wake up and the other dudes get a hot shower, and my shower is frigid or it doesn't have any pressure to it, I will be content.  If I get my meal last, and there is only half a scoop of eggs, or a tiny scoop of rice, I will be content.  I will do this by being joyous when all else goes wrong buy praying to the Lord for His strength.
Luke 3:14
The soldiers came to John and asked why they must do, John responded by saying, “Don’t be violent to anyone, don’t lie, and be content with how much you’re payed.”  John told them to be pacifists.  Pacifism in Christianity is how we turn the other cheek without striking back.  It can’t be done in our own strength, I know my first instinct is to hit back and hit back harder, but it’s not the right attitude, if I am being persecuted for my faith I’m not called to hit back, I’m called to show God’s love.  If I’m witnessing with violence the only way people are coming to the faith is by being scared.  In the middle east (Extremist Muslim area) are they winning people to Islam with love?  No with terror.  Next was to not accuse any falsely.  I see this all throughout the Bible.  Don’t lie, don’t bare false witness, so forth and so on.  False accusations ruin reputations.  Jesus was murdered due to false accusations, Stephen was martyred.  Godly pastors have lost churches due to false accusations.  No one likes a liar.  This one kid back home lies all the time about his parts breaking at the bicycle shop I work at, and tries to get them warrantied.  Do you think my boss likes it?  Do you think the company who manufactures and sells the parts like it?  No even them as unbelievers hate it.  No one likes a liar.  Finally John tells them to be content with their wages.  This one really hit me.  I know I would complain about my hourly rate quite often.  I didn’t think for the amount of work I was doing, that I should have been payed the amount I was at Chick-Fil-A.  I was being payed more than a lot of people there, but still I wanted more.  I was nothing but selfish.  I was being an entitled, spoiled, brat.  I see it now, but I was so blind before.  And when I thought I was being under-payed do you think I was doing my 100% best work?  No, I was not.  John says to be content with your wages.  I needed to be content.  If I’m payed two dollars an hour or one-hundred (that sounds nice), I need to be content.  I need to not complain and I need to show joy.  So today, I will be content with whatever I receive.  If I’m dealt the crappy hand than I need to be joyful and content.  Did God complain about dying on the cross for me?  No He did not and He for sure gained nothing, but a loss with me.  Why would God want to joyfully die for me a huge screw up?  It makes absolutely 0 sense to me, but I’m not going to argue with God.  Anyway I will be joyful in any circumstance I’m in, and if I find myself starting to complain I will sing praises to God out loud or in my head.
1 Timothy 6:6-8
God will provide for all our needs.  In the scriptures it mentions that God even provides for the birds of the air, so why would we be worried?  There is no reason to worry about my needs.  Verse 6 could screw some theology up and stump people into the prosperity gospel.  If I’m godly then I will receive great gain.  Then verse 8 says, that we should be content with the provisions we receive. I however really like verse 7, We can’t bring anything into or out of this world.  I can’t bring my bicycle, I can’t bring my clothes, my friends, my money, or anything.  Everything physical that I owe is vain.  It puts a prospective on things.  I need nothing in this life to be happy.  People especially back in the states talk about how money is happiness.  I however need nothing to be happy, because God will provide my needs.  Not my wants necessarily, but my needs.  I watched a documentary about minimalism and these dudes literally had like 15 physical items in their lives and they were happier than before when they had a lot of items.  I know I buy things out of impulse, when I should really just trust that God will provide my needs and I don’t need to buy anything more.  So today for my application I will find Five items that I have and that are just going to waste and purge myself of them.  Also it’s kind of tough here that I receive three meals a day, but I will fully trust in God that He will provide for me. 

Friday, February 3, 2017

Revelation 1:9

John had to wait patiently for the word of God to come to him.  John was sent to the island of Patmos for exile for nothing more than preaching the name of Christ.  I want that in my life.  I want to be able to patiently wait for God’s word.  In modern days we want instant satisfaction.  We want it now, the new iphone, computer, camera, in my case a new bicycle.  We don’t just want them, but we want them now.  We should practice patience more, I should practice patience more.  Patience is more than a character, it’s a lifestyle.  I say this because everything in life requires a little patience.  John goes on to say a companion in tribulation.  A friend in times of pain or sorrow.  John went through beatings and exile, we get upset when someone cuts us off in traffic, or cuts in front of us in line at the grocery store.  The apostles were beat man.  I need to be in my bible all the time in case of times of persecution.  I don’t want to be the weak Christian that gives in, I want to be strong and if times of pain and torture come, I want to be able to stand in the fire with the love of God in my heart.  Paul mentions of all his trials in the name of Jesus in the book of 2 Corinthians.  That is a man of God, I want to be a man of God.  Today I want to be able to patiently wait for God to speak to me.  I want to know what God has in store for me, so I will ask Him in prayer and patiently wait for an answer.  I will be in the word so if times of persecution come I may know what God’s promises to me are, and I will be able to share the same grace that I received to my persecutors.
Luke 21:19

Jesus calls us to possess my soul in my patience.  In context Jesus talks about watching your tongue.  So Jesus tells me to have patience so I don’t get upset and lash out on others.  Patience is hard to have control over and with my own self I can’t control it.  The only way is with the help of Christ.  I know in my own life I can get upset with others that are going too slow.  Mainly other drivers on the road.  I know I’ll unfortunately get super mad and yell at the other cars even though they can’t hear me.  It’s pointless and I usually curse in the process.  The only person being affected is myself.  What’s the point of yelling at others anyway?  There is no point, even if they do hear…It’ll just make them mad too, and then it’s defiantly no help at all.  I’m called to be a witness for Christ, not for my flesh, or the world, or Satan.  If I’m upsetting others I’m not sharing Christ’s love.  So today I will practice my patience, I will pray to Christ instead of lashing out on others.  I don’t want to be a witness for my flesh.
Luke 8:11-15

So in this parable, Jesus says we’re one of four of the places which the seed scattered.  Also the seed is the word of God.  The Devil can take away the word of God from me and I do not want that, I want to listen to the word of God and keep it and produce fruit.  I don’t want to be the person that hears God’s word and just completely falls away.  The second of the four received the word with joy, but they after a while fell away.  I was like this a while ago and I hope that I no longer am like this.  In junior high I would hear God’s word and love it, but then just fall away.  Number three of four was the ones that lived in the flesh.  It’s so easy to just live to please the flesh, but as Christians we’re called to be separate to the world.  We are not called to be apart of the world, we’re to be separate.  We obviously live in the world, but we shouldn’t live to please the flesh.  As humans the flesh is so easy to please, but as Christians God is easy to live for.  Or at least should be as it is our reasonable service which Paul says.  Today I will try to be the Good soil seed.  I will do this by hearing God’s word, listeng with attention.  Also I will pray before devotions that I may receive everything God has in store for me.
Hebrews 6:12

“Be not slothful.”  says Hebrews.  It then goes on to say, “But followers of them through faith and patience inherit the promises.”  Now who are these men or women that are our examples?  My first example would be Noah, Noah was told by God to build an ark.  Noah was told it was going to rain.  At this point it had never rained before, so I mean, what was Noah thinking, I can’t even imagine.  He out of faith built the ark, even whilst being mocked.  He practiced patience, he could have so easily given up, but through perseverance, he built that ark and God kept His promise and saved Noah and his family.  For my second example I’ll use Abraham.  Abraham was called to leave his fathers country.  He talked with God, and had never even heard of God before.  He got up not knowing where to go and just went.  Through him is the whole Jewish nation.  God kept His promise and still is keeping His promise with Him.  I think Abraham knew that He wasn’t going to have innumerable amounts of kids right away.  Abraham had to practice patience and faith, but through it, is still being blessed with children.  Even as I speak another Jewish child was born.  For my final example we have Sara.  Sara was told she was going to have a child and laughed.  She was an old lady at this point and was unable to have children due to this.  She did not practice faith right away, but she eventually held onto the promises of God and gave birth to Issac.  She practiced patience, God told her she was going to have a child.  That’s at least a nine month process.  They don’t just appear via-stork.  My application today is to practice patience and faith.  We all know at least one of God’s promises in our lives, which is where we are going for field time.  I know I’m heading to Uganda, but I need to not be in Uganda right now, I need to be in Guatemala.  I need to practice faith and patience that in God’s timing I will be in Uganda serving Him.  So I will do this by giving 100% of my effort and love to the Guatemalans, even if I’m on toilet duty for kids club again, I will faithfully serve while there and I will not complain like I did on Wednesday.
Colossians 1:11
I receive strength through the power of Christ.  Strength in patience and long suffering and I receive it with joy.  Through Christ’s death and resurrection I should be joyful about waiting.  I should be joyful about others being a little slower than me.  On Agua not all of us could go the same pace, but I am joyful that yes I had to wait for a few others that we all made it and that we had to rely on the strength of Christ.  I know that we honored Jesus by doing it all for His glory, and it wasn’t in our own strength.  It was a joy watching all of us do it and get up to the top.  It was a joy seeing all the tired faces after a hard days work.  It was a joy when we found Nolan still alive.  It was a joy eating pizza and especially as a family.  It was a joy when the dogs came along with us.  As a Christian we should be joyful all the time, look at Paul’s life.  Joy also doesn't came in my own strength.  I’m not trusting in Micah for joy, I have to ask God for joy.  I may naturally not be the most sad and down person ever, but I have some sucky times and I have to rely on God for my joy.  It should be simple to have joy, after all Jesus died on the cross for me, why can’t I be happy for Him?  Today I’m going to be joyful, even if everything goes slowly around me.  I’m going to take a moment and breathe and allow the peace of God to come over me.  I will do this by allowing everyone to go ahead of me in line at all the meals.  I will be joyful while waiting and not complain about how slowly the line goes.  If the plates run out before the end I will joyfully restock them.  I can’t do this in my strength, but rather God’s so I have to rely on Him 100%.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Ephesians 5:15-17
Paul mentions that to be wise, I shouldn’t waste my time.  I should use my time to discover God’s will in my life.  To pray and find out what comes next.  I know I waste a lot of time, especially at home.  How much time have I wasted by watching RedBull TV mountain bike vides, or the barista showdown?  How much time have I wasted watching mindless television.  Way too much.  The worst part is, I’ll never receive that time back.  How much could have I grown my faith, or my knowledge in the Lord?  How many more people could I have witnessed to back home?  Or maybe just have edified?  I’ll never have that time back.  I know I like to talk to some of my friends in my hometown.  One owns a coffee shop and one owns a bicycle shop I work at and I made friends with my workmates, but they don’t know the Lord, and I wasted my time watching pointless videos when could have grown my faith and witnessed to them.  Looking back, I just see how selfish I was, and still am.  Yea I would have that occasional talk of God, but never really a deep or meaningful talk where I actually witnessed.  Often times I would just blend in with them, you couldn’t tell much of a difference between them and myself.  Paul says though, which I really enjoy, “Redeeming the time.”  Yes, that time is gone, but I have a week in April, and at least two months after field time of which I can show them Christ’s love and His grace.  I don’t want to go home and be the same person that I was when I was home just a few short weeks ago.  I feel closer to God and I feel I have wasted a lot less time, yes I still waste time here, but a lot less of it.  So for my application I have two: My daily application will be to find at least ten more minutes that I can use to pray.  Then my application for April, is to cut my red bull tv intake out completely and use that time more wisely by praying, reading the word, or by using it to show the love of Christ to my friends back home.
2 Corinthians 1:12
In a Christians testimony, it’s filled with life applicable situations of which the Christian has been through.  Like drugs or other situations of which God has gotten them through to get to Him.  So they may understand and know God.  These situations and learning from them give Christians Godly wisdom.  It goes on to say, “By the grace of God we had our conversation in the world.”   I wasn’t born a Christian, I was born a sinner.  I had to be saved from the flesh, my flesh.  I had to be rescued from my sinful nature.  Who rescued me from me?  Jesus, the only one that could.  Due to the fact that I was rescued from the pits of Hell, I can rejoice in the free gift of grace given by God.  Today I will rejoice in the fact that I’m no longer a sinner going to Hell, I will do this by praying to my heavenly Father thanking Him for saving me from the spot I deserve in Hell.
Psalm 111:10
If I fear the Lord and keep His commandments I shall begin to inquire wisdom, not earthly wisdom, but Godly wisdom.  It however doesn’t mean I shall instantly inquire all wisdom, but it’s the beginning.  Godly Wisdom is what I want in my life.  Godly wisdom helps others and shows the right path.  Godly wisdom leads people to Christ.  It knows what’s evil and avoids it.  The difference between wisdom and knowledge is wisdom applies what you know, but knowledge just knows.  I need to pray for Godly wisdom and not just for knowledge.  I need not to just know what God’s word says, but I also need to use it in my life.  In order to do this though I have to pray and constantly ground myself in what God says through the scriptures.  I need to constantly pray for a filling of the Holy Spirit and attempt to apply the Word in my life, but only with the help of God.  Finally it ends with a remembrance.  His praise endureth forever.  Not my praise, not the praise of others, but His praise.  God’s praise.  In ministry it’s not about me.  If I’m serving looking for something to happen to me.  Or if I’m serving so I have others looking at me talking about how good of a person or Christian that I am…Then it’s the wrong kind of service.  True service is a heart attitude aligning with my actions all to bring the glory and praises to God my heavenly Father.  I must remember that when I am Fearing God and applying it to my life, I must remember to bring the praise to God and not puff myself up.  I must remember it’s not about me and I have to drop the pride out of my life.  I must humble myself.  I can do this by thinking of myself less than everyone else.  David calls himself a worm, but God says he was a man after His own heart.  Today I’m going to put all others before me in all areas and go through the lunch line last.
James 1:5

If I lack wisdom than I must pray for it to receive it.  Wisdom being applied knowledge will come through life situations to me.  If I pray for patience than I will be tested on my patience.  Perhaps with a slow driver, it may seem humorous, but it’s how God works.  The other cool thing is, if I ask for wisdom, yes, God presents it in a way that I’ll learn and apply it, but God will give me the opportunity because He is a gracious giver and won’t uphold.  I may be the biggest screw up ever, let me rephrase that.  I am the biggest screw up ever, but God will even give me the opportunity to gain Godly wisdom.  Wisdom from God is super special because it’s not a waste.  In Proverbs 2:6 It says, “For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of HIS mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.”  So I know I can only receive wisdom from Him, and I obtain this wisdom through the knowledge and understanding that He communicates unto me through His scriptures.  I can’t obtain Godly wisdom through my own understanding, my parents understanding, or my friends, but only God’s.  Solo Deos.  Wisdom is gained through life experience, like my screw ups.  Which I do, A lot, but God’s grace is bigger than my screw-ups.  In 2 Corinthians 12:9 it says, “My grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”  Jesus says that He is made stronger in my weakness.  So Jesus is exalted when I screw up, because at that moment I know I can’t depend on myself.  Then and only in this moment I can obtain Godly wisdom, after I admit that I messed up and that I can’t do it on my own.  Then I can learn from my mistakes and with that knowledge I will apply it to myself and obtain God-given wisdom.  Today I will reflect on my mistakes, I will ask God to forgive me, I will ask God to help me learn from my mistakes, and I will ask Him to give me opportunities to apply it to my life.  Through all of it, God tells me I will obtain wisdom, so it’s not just a “hopefully,” but it is God’s promise to me.
James 3:13-17

To start this IBS off I will first quote Ecclesiastes 1:18, “For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge, increaseth sorrow.”  Show off your wisdom, by good things or works.  Instead of bragging about head knowledge and my own brilliance, it would be more edifying to the brother and sisterhood to just help others.  Instead of puffing myself up, I need to edify others.  If I’m bitter or angry towards others, what help does that have in the body?  None, it’s going to do more to harm than to help.  My earthly knowledge is nice and all, but if it doesn’t have anything to do with God, than what place does it serve in the body?  If it doesn’t edify, does it even belong? No, it doesn’t.  All it does it cause others to be upset, and if it doesn’t edify, then it’s of the devil.  If I’m living my life causing strife than I’m doing the devils works and not God’s.  In 1 John 4:12 it says That if you hate your brother or as much as call him a fool than you are not of God.  God is love so if we don’t love we aren’t of God.  If I am given godly wisdom however than it does edify and build up the body.  I need to be in the word more and inquire more Godly wisdom so I can edify the body more.  I need to show love more and not puff myself up.  Today I will put myself below others, I will try and be in fellowship with God more by reading the bible and trying to get something out of it instead of reading just to read.  I will also be in fellowship by praying more often.  If I’m in fellowship with God then I can be in fellowship with my brothers and sisters.  If I’m not in fellowship with God, my friendships can be considered a waste, vanity of vanities.