Every good southern, country boy calls his mother “Momma”. Our city cousins might call their mother “Mom” but Momma just seems right to us. The sound of Momma conjures up thoughts of home cooked meals late in the afternoon, warm quilts on cold nights, and big hugs at hellos and goodbyes that would almost crack a rib.
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The Unlikely Messiah
Hollywood tries to portray Jesus as a robed and sandaled Fabio. But according to scripture there was nothing about His appearance to attract us to Him, “He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, There is no beauty that we should desire Him” (Isaiah 53:2 NKJV).
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As a child and young man growing up in church, I often heard people use the word “burden” quite often. Pastors would say they had a burden for their church. Friends would speak of “carrying a burden” for a family member. I don’t hear people use the term much anymore but I am very familiar with the term and the experience. I would define “burden” as a deep concern planted by the Holy Spirit to motivate us to prayer and action.
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CURE-ALL-PILL FOR HELL’S ILLS – Just say that phrase three times real fast. Yep, it could be a tongue twister for sure. If it was an infomercial, they would be hawked for $19.99 for a thirty-day supply plus shipping and handling; and if you call in the next thirty minutes they would double your offer, just pay separate shipping! NO, I am not peddling pills. It is just a phrase with a truth behind it. The point being, many people are looking for an easy fix, even in their spiritual lives. If there was a magic pill that would burn fat so you could eat like a hog but look like a chick it would be impossible to keep them on the self. Therehave been many gadgets, gimmicks, and pills that have been sold with a promise but with little or no results. In order to be a strong disciple of Jesus, it is no different, there is no magic pill.
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Salt of the Earth
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men” (Matthew 5:13 NKJV).
SALTINESS OF CHRIST – Jesus used salt as an analogy to show the importance of being a true disciple. Salt without its saltiness is contaminated salt. In the time of Jesus, salt was derived as it is today from the sea or from salt deposits in the earth. The salt we buy today is consistent and mostly free from contaminates but salt in the times of the New Testament was not so pure. The water from the sea was evaporated leaving a residue of salt but the residue was not pure salt as it contained other minerals and contaminates of the sea. When it was too contaminated, it lost its flavor or saltiness. So it is with us, if our lives become contaminated with the sin of the culture we lose our distinctive flavor of Christlikeness and become ineffective in our influence.
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Paradox of Faith
One of the definitions of paradox is a “statement that seems to say two opposite things but that may be true” (Merriam—Webster Dictionary).
I would assume most Christians struggle with their faith and with their prayers; however, many would be afraid to admit it in the company of perceived spiritual giants. Everyone looks a little better from a distance. I have viewed a few strutting preachers at a distant but when I got a closer look I wondered why they strut. We all have some struggles of faith even if some look as if they have it altogether.
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The subject of obscurity has dogged my steps for some time for reasons only God knows. I know this sounds strange in a blog that could potentially be read by thousands of eyes but I would like to share my heart on this subject. I think we need to rightly divide two statements made by Jesus. In one He said, “Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven” (Matthew 6:1 NKJV). In the second one, He said, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16 NKJV).
Taking these two statements, I think we need to boil the concept of obscurity down to motives. We should not do our charitable deeds to promote ourselves but to bless others. We are not to hide while doing our good works so the light of Jesus can shine. If people see our labors as humble servants of God, they will glorify God when they observe our service to God.
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