Archive for the ‘blogging’ Category

Have you noticed how whenever there are young children about, they always seem to be at the centre of everyone’s attention. We all want a cuddle from the child, or the child to reach out to us for help or guidance.

So maybe today’s bible verses that relate to the ‘faith of a child’, are more about our faith than actually the faith of a child. Today’s verses are from Mark 9:36-37 (TPT)

He wrapped the child in his arms and said to them, “Whoever welcomes a little child in my name welcomes me. And whoever welcomes me welcomes not only me, but the one who sent me.”

We we can’t accept the innocence of a child with open arms, how can we accept other who have life experiences behind them, and therefore have their failures and flaws. So we are expected to treat everyone as a child, in other words, accept them unconditionally, ignoring anything that may distract us from accepting them.

I want to look at another verse from scripture today that relates to the ‘faith of a child’.

 In the same way that nursing infants cry for milk, you must intensely crave the pure spiritual milk of God’s Word. For this “milk” will cause you to grow into maturity, fully nourished and strong for life ~ 1 Peter 2 (TPT)

Babies need nourish of milk from their mothers to flourish and grow physically. So comparing how we grow spiritually, to how babies need nourishment is such a great way to remind us that just as a baby must receive nourishment to grow, so we must receive spiritual nourishment so our faith will grow.

Also what better time to learn about God than when we are young children. When we learn young, these life lessons and directions are more likely to stay with us throughout our life, so again we need to have the ‘faith of a child’.

Once again today, I want to look at another verse from scripture that relates to the ‘faith of a child’. Today’s verse is from Proverbs 22:6 (TPT):

Dedicate your children to God and point them in the way that they should go, and the values they’ve learned from you will be with them for life.

We sometimes forget that children see and hear everything we do, and that they learn from that. Therefore we must be sure that what say and do is appropriate for our children, and does teach them the values and a of life we want them to follow. After all, as this verse from Proverbs says, what we teach our children is what sticks with them, so make sure what they see and hear is what we want to stick with them!

After seeing the photo I shared in yesterday’s blog post (Faith of a child), I have found myself looking at the bible for instances where the ‘faith of a child’ is mentioned or inferred. So I want to share a few of these with you over the next few days.

Matthew 19:14 (TPT)

Jesus overheard them and said, “I want little children to come to me, so never interfere with them when they want to come, for heaven’s kingdom realm is composed of beloved ones like these! Listen to this truth: No one will enter the kingdom realm of heaven unless he becomes like one of these!”

This is a bible verse I’m sure we’ve all heard a number of times, so I hope you still realise how important it is. The disciples scolded the people who tried to bring children to Christ, claiming Jesus didn’t want to be bothered. It seems the disciples never actually asked Jesus if he was ok to see the children, before scolding those who brought them. I wonder what made them think Jesus wouldn’t want to welcome the children?

Jesus was always willing to welcome anyone who wanted to come to him. We must we welcoming to those who want to seek God, so let’s make sure our church is open and welcoming to all who come through the door, regardless of their need, their background or indeed their past.

I’ve spoken before about how at times, we are all guilty of judging others based, either on what we see or the little bit of their life that we actual know about. Can you imagine what life would really be like if no-one judged anyone else because of their outward appearance?

As 1 Samuel reminds us, even although we look at others outward appearances, God looks inside us. God see the real us, he sees our true feelings and emotions, feelings we try our best to hide from others – scared, insecure, alone, angry, hurt, desperate etc.

Let’s not judge others by their outward appearance, but instead get to know them, so that we too can find out more about their true feelings and emotions.

“And when you pray, make sure you forgive the faults of others so that your Father in heaven will also forgive you. But if you withhold forgiveness from others, your Father withholds forgiveness from you.”

Matthew 6:14-15 (The Passion Translation)

In Again and Again yesterday I told you how God forgives us over and over again when we hurt him. But as the above extract from Matthew’s gospel we are reminded that although God is willing to forgive us over and over again, we must give Him something in return – We must also be willing to forgive those who hurt us, even though that can be one of the most difficult things we ever do.

When we forgive others, we act more like Christ, and so we show God that we want to be more like Him. So remember, to be forgiven we must also forgive.

In the last few days I’ve talked about how we get through tough times in our life. We can appear to be completely deflated and defeated by what we face, but when we follow the advice given in the posts of the last few days, we can find strength.

When we pray and give our all to God, He can start working in us, and through us, and start healing and renewing us for the inside out. So again I urge you, give all your problems and concerns to God, and He will help you through every situation you face.

Did you identify yourself in yesterday’s blog post (Hardest Time) when I described some of the characteristics that can come to the fore when we’re going through a difficult period in our lives?

The thing is, I’ve found in my own life that the characteristics I described yesterday, only become obvious when we’re haven’t given our all to God. When we keep back parts of our life from God, they are the things which will cause us problems and stress us out, because the bits of our life we’ve put into God’s hands, I can can say with assurance, He will handle.

If you’re going through a tough time, make sure you’ve given your all to God, because although that will not mean life will suddenly become easy, it will mean that you’ll have the reassurance that God is with you, looking after you, and caring for you. In turn you can be sure brighter and happier days will be ahead for you.

Yes, it can be incredibly difficult to let go of everything in your life, and give it all to God, but let me assure you, it is more than worth it!

In the last couple of days I’ve been talking about how we need to shine our light in this dark world. In order for a light to shine, it needs to get its power or energy from somewhere, so where do we get our energy from to shine our light?

The answer can be found in John 8:12:

I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.

To make sure we have the power/energy to shine our light we must trust God. When we follow Him, he will give us the strength and guidance to shine our light.

Make sure you have the power to shine your light, so trust God and in return He will give you the light of life.

Here’s one of my favourite Salvation Army band pieces called The Light of the World (Dean Goffin). It features the hymn tune Aurelia which in this piece of music we associate with the following words:

O Jesus, Thou art standing, outside the fast closed door,
In lowly patience waiting to pass the threshold o’er:
Shame on us, Christian brothers, His Name and sign who bear,
O shame, thrice shame upon us, to keep Him standing there!

O Jesus, Thou art knocking; and lo, that hand is scarred,
And thorns Thy brow encircle, and tears Thy face have marred:
O love that passeth knowledge, so patiently to wait!
O sin that hath no equal, so fast to bar the gate!

O Jesus, Thou art pleading in accents meek and low,
“I died for you, My children, and will you treat Me so?”
O Lord, with shame and sorrow we open now the door;
Dear Saviour, enter, enter, and leave us nevermore.

The other week in our morning worship we were challenged to go outside our church and shine our light in this dark world, so others will know Christ is at the centre of all we do. We were challenged to consider how we could shine our light and this got me thinking…

  1. Do others see Christ in me, or do they see something else?
  2. Am I swinging my light for Christ?
  3. Am I sharing my faith with those I come into contact with?

Some challenging questions there, some that have been going round in my head since we were challenged to shine our light.

I know I’m far from perfect. I know I’m not very good at vocalising my faith. I started the blog a few years ago because I felt it was what I wanted to do – I intended my blog to be about me, the things I did in life, my observations, maybe even my challenges. However God had other ideas, as within a short time of started to blog, I found I was blogging every day, and most of my posts were about my faith, being a Christian, or the challenges we face in life as Christians.

So my blog hasn’t turned out to as I planned it to be, but I pray it has trued out as God wanted it to be, a way for me to shine my light for God through my posts.