What Type Of Man Are You?

One type of Christian man trusts that what Jesus teaches is true . . . but only on an intellectual level. This man appreciates a good sermon, but then goes away and lives out the moments of his life in ways that make it indistinguishable from the lives of those who do not trust Jesus at all. This type of man doesn’t trust Jesus with his life, and so lives “like a shrub in the desert” (Jeremiah 17:6). There is another type of man, though, one who chooses to trust the truth of Jesus deeply, authentically, and practically. This type of man lives the moments of his life in ways that are markedly different than they’d be otherwise . . . because of his trust.

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord,
whose trust is the Lord.
He is like a tree planted by water,
that sends out its roots by the stream . . .” (Jeremiah 17:7-8).

 

God Bless, Jay

Prayer is Important

To Pray

There once was a young seminarian starting out on his journey toward the priesthood. He was a bit of a know-it-all, and wanted to be the best at everything he did. He heard about a very holy monk who was considered a spiritual master in regard to prayer and contemplation.

The seminarian sought him out, and asked the old monk to teach him all of his secrets for prayer. The monk sent him away. The seminarian was stubborn and returned again soon, asking again to learn his secrets to prayer. The monk told him to come back in one week.

When he arrived the next week, the monk took him out behind the monastery to a body of water. He still hadn’t said a word. As they entered into the water up just past their waist, the seminarian grew impatient with the monk, who was still silent.

All of a sudden the monk grabbed the seminarian and held his head under the water. The seminarian struggled and thrashed about, but with the strength of an ox the old monk held him under the water. As the monk let go of him, he came up gasping for breath, embarrassed, angry, and confused. The monk looked at him and said, ‘Until you pray with the same desperation that you have for air, you have not prayed.’

Prayer is as important to our soul as air is to our body! We need prayer to stay connected to the God who created us with a plan in mind.

Nothing Can Separate Us

IMG_7019

The question the gospel of grace puts to us is simply this: Who shall separate you from the love of Christ? What are you afraid of?

Are you afraid that your weakness could separate you from the love of Christ? It can’t.

Are you afraid that your inadequacies could separate you from the love of Christ? They can’t.

Are you afraid that your inner poverty could separate you from the love of Christ? It can’t.

Difficult marriage, loneliness, anxiety over the children’s future? They can’t.

Negative self-image? It can’t.

Economic hardship, racial hatred, street crime? They can’t.

Rejection by loved ones or the suffering of loved ones? They can’t.

Persecution by authorities, going to jail? They can’t.

Nuclear war? It can’t.

Mistakes, fears, uncertainties? They can’t.

The gospel of grace calls out: Nothing can ever separate you from the love of God made visible in Christ Jesus our Lord.

You must be convinced of this, trust it, and never forget to remember. Everything else will pass away, but the love of Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. Faith will become vision, hope will become possession, but the love of Jesus Christ that is stronger than death endures forever. In the end, it is the one thing you can hang on to.

What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans‬ ‭8‬:‭31‬ NIV

Prototype by Jonathan Martin – The Review

PrototypeJonathan Martin has written an eye opener of a book with Prototype, What happens when you discover your more like Jesus than you think?  From beginning to end Jonathan uses personal stories, humor, scripture and at times statements that make you wake up and take notice that your are more like Jesus than you realize.  That you are God’s beloved.

I always like it when I find the ‘what if’s” in a book, and Jonathan hit me with some great ones just pages into the book.

“What if the ultimate goal of everything Jesus said and did was not to get us to believe certain things about Him, but to become like Him?  What if it were possible to become fully human in all ways that Jesus was?  What if Jesus were God’s prototype for a whole new way of being human?”

Through out the book Jonathan shows us that we need to completely trust that God loves us just like Jesus did.  Understand that we are God’s beloved, and be confident in who we are and what are purpose is.  Jesus understood that he was God’s beloved and, as Jonathan perfectly puts it, “unlike every other person in human history….He never forgot.”  Prototype will help you realize you can be more like Jesus, and you are more like Jesus than you realize.

I also received a DVD curriculum by the same name. The DVD is divided into six sessions about 15 minutes in length each. Each session is a recap of the chapters and I believe would be very beneficial in a small group setting. The DVD also includes a Leader’s Guide.  The DVD is perfect for a small group curriculum of any age. 

You can read an excerpt of the book HERE   

You can find Prototype at Barnes&Noble and Amazon.

Overall rating – 5 out of 5 stars.

About the Author

Jonathan Martin

Jonathan Martin leads the liars, dreamers, and misfits of Renovatus, a Church for People Under Renovation, in Charlotte, North Carolina. He holds degrees from Gardner-Webb University, the Pentecostal Theological Seminary, and Duke University Divinity School. He is married to Amanda, and is unafraid to be seen walking his small dog, Cybil. www.pastorjonathanmartin.com

I am blessed to have received a copy of this book and DVD for free from Tyndale Publishers for review purposes.  I received no other compensation and the review is my own honesty opinion of the book.

The Son

A wealthy man  loved to collect rare works of art. He had everything in his collection, from Picasso to Raphael.. He would often sit and admire the great works of art.

When the man died a great auction of his paintings was held. Many influential people gathered, excited over seeing the great paintings and having an opportunity to purchase one for their collection.

On the platform sat the painting of “The Son.”   This painting was of the old man’s son who had died in the Vietnam war.  The auctioneer pounded his gavel and yelled,“We will start the bidding with this picture of The Son.” “Who will bid for this picture?” Total silence.

Then a voice in the back of the room shouted, “We want to see the famous paintings. Skip this one.”

But the auctioneer persisted. “Will someone bid for this painting? Who will start the bidding? Anyone? $100.00, $200.00?”

Another voice angrily shouted . “We didn’t come here to see this painting. We came to see the Van Goghs, the Rembrandts. Get on with the real bids. We want the works of art!”

But still the auctioneer continued. “The Son! The Son! Who’ll Take The Son?”

Finally, a voice came from the very back of the room. It was the long-time gardener of the man and his son.

” I’ll give $10 for the painting.”  Being a poor man, it was all that he could afford. “We have $10, who will bid $20?” “Give it to him for $10. Let’s see the masters.” “$10 is the bid, won’t someone bid $20? $15?”

The crowd was becoming angry. They didn’t want the picture of the son. They wanted the more worthy investments for their collections.

The auctioneer pounded the gavel. “Going once, twice, SOLD for $10! “Someone sitting in the second row shouted, “Now let’s get on with the collection!”

The auctioneer laid down his gavel. “I’m sorry, the auction is over.”

”What about the paintings?” “I am sorry.”  Said the auctioneer.  “When I was called to conduct this auction, I was told of a secret stipulation in the will. I was not allowed to reveal that stipulation until this time.  Only the painting of “The Son” would be auctioned. Whoever bought that painting would inherit the entire estate, including the paintings. The man who took the son gets everything!”

God is waiting for you to take “The Son”, because “Whoever Takes The Son gets everything.”

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16

A Prayer

A Prayer

“A Prayer”

Let me do my work each day; and if the darkened hours of despair overcome me, may I not forget the strength that comforted me in the desolation of other times.

May I still remember the bright hours that found me walking over the silent hills of my childhood, or dreaming on the margin of a quiet river, when a light glowed within me, and I promised my early God to have courage amid the tempests of the changing years.

Spare me from bitterness and from the sharp passions of unguarded moments. May I not forget that poverty and riches are of the spirit.

Though the world knows me not, may my thoughts and actions be such as shall keep me friendly with myself.

Lift up my eyes from the earth, and let me not forget the uses of the stars. Forbid that I should judge others lest I condemn myself.

Let me not follow the clamor of the world, but walk calmly in my path.

Give me a few friends who will love me for what I am; and keep ever burning before my vagrant steps the kindly light of hope.

And though age and infirmity overtake me, and I come not within sight of the castle of my dreams, teach me still to be thankful for life, and for time’s olden memories that are good and sweet; and may the evening’s twilight find me gentle still.

– Max Ehrmann