Morning World! Happy Weekend before Christmas-weekend. Only 10 more sleeps before Christmas! Yay!
So since our domain manager has merged with another company we’ve had a couple technical difficulties and have been unable to upload out our latest blog post. So sorry.
We hope to have things set up by Monday. Be sure to check back with us.
Shell and KD
Well, it’s been over two months and this uninspired mom is still a bit, well, uninspired. I’ve come to this place where I am just unsure of what I am supposed to say and the last thing I want to do is say the wrong thing.
The world is so full of controversy right now. It’s ugly, it’s mean, it’s sad and it’s a difficult time to have an opinion. Someone out there is always going to hate you for it. Last night I was practically at the point of tears thinking of all the misunderstandings, hate, and brokenness that plagues, not only the “millennials” but also their parents and grandparents. I look at the picture at the beginning of this post and I’m frightened of the world my boys will grow up in.
Often I sit pondering our current state of affairs and my blood begins to boil. I want to make YouTube videos and write profound Facebook posts that are loaded with opinion and personal feelings, hoping in some way to persuade people into peace and the same mind. But every time I begin to write or record the Holy Spirit stops me in my tracts and reminds me of this one thing; this is not personal to me, it’s personal to Him. The issues that we have faced which cause this sort of hate and violence have nothing to do with guns, who’s president, global climate change, color, prejudice, status, feminism, sexism, rape, or what have you. The issue is with the heart of man, and it’s existed since the beginning of time, when Adam and Eve gave up their perfect relationship with God.
Ladies and gentleman, no words of man can change the fact that every single one of us does the wrong thing. It’s called sin. The evil in this world is based solely on our “Sin Problem.” We have left the leading of the Lord behind us and we have tried to go out and make something of ourselves in our own, and we have failed miserably.
I think of the parable of the prodigal son (you can read the full story here) and how he no longer wanted to work with, or be under the care of his father. He wanted the money that would be his after his father had passed on and then the son left. And within a short matter of time his greed and selfishness had caused him to squander all he had. Now the son’s only choice was to become the hired hand of a pig farmer. This young man was so broke he couldn’t even afford to buy himself a loaf of bread, and his starvation caused him to even long for the trash that was the pigs food. But he wasn’t even allowed to eat that.
Y’all, the world we live in today has done exactly that. We have rejected God, we have taken what we have wanted and we have exchanged the presence of God the Father for the temporary pleasures of this life. We desire to make something of ourselves, and in our pride we have brought about a bankruptcy of our souls. We have squandered what minimal knowledge we have on things that only matter in this life and it has thrown us all into a godless pigsty of backbiting, anger, violence, and rage. We long for anything we can get our hands on to satisfy the deep longing for something more that cries out in the depths of our soul, something that could possibly cultivate peace, or bring about change. But our go-to remedy is nothing but pig’s food.
Thankfully, the end of the story does not leave the prodigal son in the pigsty. Instead he has an epiphany, that if he could just go home, ask his father for forgiveness and then ask to be hired on as a server he would at least have food in his belly. So he begins the long journey home.
But when he is getting closer to his fathers house, off in the distance he sees a man running towards him. That man is none other than his father, who has been waiting for him, anticipating his return, praying that his son would drop his foolishness and return to his family! The repentant heart of the son combined with the loving heart of the Father changed the end of the story! The love of the Father has covered the stupid, selfish sin of the sin with an abundant, forgiving love! He takes the son back, and not just as a servant, but he takes his youngest back as his beloved son. The father celebrates his sons life, as if he has just been reborn. There is great joy and great rejoicing amongst all the friends and family (besides a jealous older brother, but that’s another story for another time.)
And this story makes me believe that if we would just return to God, return to our Father in the midst of the chaos, evil, hatred, and brokenness, God would begin to restore the hearts of our generation. If we would just realize and repent that in our own strength, in our own understanding we accomplish nothing but ending up in the proverbial pigsty. If people would be filled with the love of God, how many school shootings would we have? If people were filled with the love of God instead of pigs food, how much hatred would truly be portrayed in the media? If people would come back to the Father, there would be a real understanding that we are ALL equal in God’s eyes! But the president wouldn’t be the one mandating it. The feminists wouldn’t be the one demanding it. Black Lives Matter wouldn’t be the ones protesting for it. No, it would be the people of God, not held captive by titles or names, simply returning to that place where fellowship with God is key to changing our world.
Sin will always cause discord, and no matter what there will always be sin this side of heaven. But, the peace of God can transcend all understanding. The peace of God is powerful enough to change the course of our world and where it’s headed. We need God. And that’s it.
Have a a great Thursday. I am so grateful for God putting each of you in my path. Be blessed!
So, I can hardly contain how very excited I am to have this new "Devotions" portion of the blog up. God has given me a platform that I am beyond blessed to utilize. My sincere desire is, through this page, is to walk together to the cross, as often as God lays a word on my heart to share with you. I would love your comments, along with the personal revelations that God is revealing to you. I am so often encouraged and inspired by those special moments with Jesus that other's share with me.
My goal in sharing these devotions is not to act like a preacher, or a teacher, or anything of the sort. The author of Hebrews so beautifully stated what I believe the purpose of this page is in Hebrews 3:13, "But exhort one another daily, as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness." As believers, it is our calling to share the Word of God with one another to keep each other following after the cross of Jesus. The temptations of this world are many, and the strong are few, but God has given us all we need for life and godliness. I long to encourage you with what our Lord and Savior has given me. I hope, from the very depths of my soul, to exhort you, beloved of Jesus, so that you might remain strong when the world around us is crumbling. And I ask that you would do the same for me. I long for your encouragement, your love, and to hear of the testimony of Jesus Christ in your own life.
What I am going to share today is something that God has laid heavily upon my heart in my personal walk with Jesus. Yet, I do not believe it is a matter of personal conviction. I don't want to sound condescending towards anyone who would read this because this is not a light topic. And this is not casting judgment upon anyone because I’m not. This is still a daily struggle for me. If you are struggling too, know this; I have walked the path, I have experienced the pull, and God is changing my heart. Am I free from this temptation now? Absolutely not. Do I still struggle? Yes. And it is much easier to surrender than to fight. But today, my chief desire is to encourage you to fight. Fight with the Word of God, and watch what happens.
So, to begin, let me start by saying, the entertainment culture of today is inciting. Movies are of the highest quality, the acting is superb, and quite often the story lines suck you in like a vacuum. Whether it be movies or main stream TV shows there is something for everyone. Even the Christian or faith based movies are well done and very entertaining.
But I propose this thought to you today; for the sake of entertainment, we have abandoned the purity (Colossians 1:21-22) of the bride of Christ, the purity (Isaiah 1:18) that was won on the Cross. That's a heavy statement, I know, but hear me out.
Disclaimer: I will be specifically referring to movies and TV shows in this post, but music and social media can be added in to this entertainment discussion, as well.
Philippians 4:8 states, "Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things."
If you were to take the words of Paul and apply them to the entertainment you watch or listen to, would you be able to stand before God and say, "I obeyed your Words, Lord?" Is what you watch what Jesus would consider excellent? Is what you set before your eyes commendable? I don't mean, does it have a good message, I mean would the Lord be pleased at what you chose to set before you for the sake of entertainment?
"We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him. We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols." 1 John 5:18-21
Everyone who has been born of God does not continue to sin. That alone is something to chew on. But the last portion is what pricks my heart. "...keep yourself from idols." I doubt I am alone when I say that movies and entertainment are definitely things that can easily become idolatrous in my life. I mean really, how many of us chose to sit and read the Bible together as a family, whether it's just two of us or tons of us, over watching a movie? It is often a challenge to chose Jesus. Again, I am not trying to be condescending, as I deal with the same struggles. But this is what God is showing me, and man, it really gets to the heart of what is going on in my own life.
The scariest part, is quite often that the types of TV and movies that pull us in are also permeated with language, sometimes the insinuation of sex (often outside of God's design), if not blatantly sex itself, bad behavior, lying, and coarse joking (Eph 5:3-5). These things are not tolerated by Jesus, so why should they be by us, those who were so graciously and mercifully won by His incredible love? Does Jesus not deserve better?
"For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works." Titus 2:11-14
Grace is not a license to sin, (Romans 6:1) so we need to be renouncing those things which are not of God and that give way to the things of this world. They are not of Jesus and they are not for believers. Period. God has created us for Him, and Him alone. He made us so that even when the latest movies and TV shows come on we can discern, as believers, that His ways are worth choosing over the things that delight the world. TV and movies that do not honor Jesus (i.e., unwed sex, language, drinking, & senseless violence) do not feed the spirit within us. That is why we must exhort each other! So that we don't fall into the things that delight the flesh.
What your watching you may not feel convicted about, but when you compare your entertainment to the Word of God, do they agree?
In conclusion, I want to share my personal testimony with you. I hope through my story, you may walk away encouraged.
Growing up, I was allowed to watch movies with the D-word or H.E.Double Hockey Sticks, and an occasional O.M.G. It never seemed to bother me, and although I knew those things were of themselves wrong, I just didn't care about allowing it into my spirit. I just ignored it and went on. The older I got, the restrictions got less and less, and more language was allowed. Of course I wasn't walking around repeating it, but still, those words lingered in the back file cabinets of my mind. Then I was allowed to watch movies with a steamy scene or two, as long as I fast-forward through it, which I willingly agreed to do. Then I was allowed to watch movies where the bad guy became the good guy, the thief or the cheater became the hero. And soon enough, before I realized what was happening, I was allowing the things that God hates to become my entertainment. Sure, a lot of the stories had "good morals" but looking back I've come to realize that even when the show or movie has good morals, that does not mean it honors the Lord. Roman's 8:8 says, " Those who are in the flesh cannot please God." Even if it is mainly moral, if it is void of Jesus because of compromise, it does not honor God.
So while I was in this season of entertainment compromise, Jesus brought my wonderful, amazing, hot, loving, and most of all, God-fearing husband into my life. And just in passing conversation he said, "I gave up almost everything I watched before because I realized, I would never watch that if Jesus were in the flesh, sitting beside me." And that statement challenged my entire walk with God.
I have friends that are giants in the faith, whose walks with Jesus are like something out of scripture, whose love and devotion for our Savior is like no one I have ever seen, and every single one of those individuals has given up the entertainment that does not edify their souls, or that would not please the Lord due to it's content. I don't mean to say that movies that aren't namely "Christian" are totally off limits. Thankfully, there are still some movies with great morals and no compromise, and let's not forget some of the old classics. But judging every movie, TV show or any form of entertainment by the Word of God is something biblically important. (Proverbs 4:23)
I want to leave you all with a question that I often ask myself when I am struggling with wanting to watch a show or movie that my spirit says no to, but my flesh says yes. Is honoring God and His ways more valuable to us that what momentarily entertains us? It doesn't matter if you are seemingly unaffected by the cussing or the innuendos, God sees what you are doing. Is what you put before your eyes staining the robe of righteousness which Jesus has placed upon you?
Be encourage Christians, God's ways are better than anything the world could ever deliver! May God bless you.