Blessed. 1 syllable or 2?

Recently, our pastor has been preaching a series entitled, “Upside Down Kingdom”.

He is drawing from the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew 5-7. The first 12 verses of Ch. 5 are called the Beatitudes. You can listen to the first sermon here.

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This morning, I woke up with a moment of clarity.

Being blessed is not about accolades or accumulations but about my attitude.

How easy is it to think that if I have stuff (money, home, car, kids, wife, dog, talent, good looks, job, etc) then I am blessed. The result of God’s blessing is reduced to things. This type of thinking is how the world thinks.

Well friends, that kind of thinking is wrong. We live in an upside down kingdom. Jesus clearly mentioned what it means to be blessed. Here are his words from Matthew,

3Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. (underline mine)

This is not the time and place for a full explanation of these verses. But there are two things that I will highlight:

***The word blessed means happy, fortunate, having received God’s favor.

So yes, one can argue that being blessed means you have stuff.  After all, God is giving you His favor. He likes you. He can give you things. But I don’t think that is the primary evidence of a blessed life. That brings me to the second point.

***All of the things in these verses are internal properties, not external possessions.

Do you see the contrast?

My first blog of 2018 said that I was going to try to answer the question, “Who Am I?” Click here to read it.

And to answer that question today, I would say that I am blessed!

blessed 2

Not because of what I have but because of Christ’s work in me. His Spirit has enabled me to be poor in spirit, mournful, meek, hungry and thirsty, merciful, pure in heart, peaceful, and persecuted.

His work on the cross is what makes this type of living even possible. It would be absolutely crazy and foolish to think that I could be blessed (according to Matthew 5) due to anything that I could do.

Jesus did it all. I did nothing.

As I get ready to sign off, remember this:

Being blessed is not about accolades or accumulations but about my attitude.

Go out into your world and have the right attitude.

God will help you.

Then He will bless you.

And that is a good thing.

 

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Me and Trees

Yesterday, my daughter was asking about carbon dioxide and oxygen. She wanted to know how the trees made oxygen. Is carbon dioxide poisonous? How long would we live if there were no trees? As I was driving, I kept thinking about the process. Truthfully, I had no strong answers for all these questions.

And then I decided to answer my daughter. All I could come up with was this,

“That is how God made it.” She seemed to be content with that answer.

photosynthesis

The real answer is Photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the name of the process by which plants turn sunlight into food. The byproduct of that process is oxygen. Good, now we can continue to breath!

The Word – workmanship

The Worth – God made trees. He made the plants as well. These living and green organisms are essential to life for us. I love it that God was detailed in His workmanship of this world.

I find it extremely difficult to think that our world and all of the creatures and plants that inhabit it are here by accident or evolution.

God made it all. In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

You know what else is considered God’s workmanship?

Me. And you.

Ephesians 2:10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

The word handiwork or workmanship, could also be replaced with masterpiece. In this verse, the word created is the verb. God created us to be His masterpiece!

I am a masterpiece!

Not a piece of junk.

Not second-rate.

Not an after thought.

No, I am fantastic and wonderful in my creation. God designed me perfectly.

The Work – Who am I? I am God’s workmanship. A product of His hands.

So now I get to go out into my world and do the good works that Jesus has for me to do.

This is how I will bring glory to God, by being who I am; His workmanship.

Last thought: What if the Mona Lisa was stashed away in a cellar somewhere?

mona lisa

The world would be missing a masterpiece.

Is your world missing its masterpiece?

 

 

For all you men out there!

This is the creed I wrote (more like adapted from the Army’s Airborne Creed) for our church. If I ask the question, Who Am I?, I could answer Heirborn! There is great joy and excitement to be a part of something that is living and active. This is the start of the ministry to men at our church. We need God!

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I AM HEIRBORN!

I jump by Faith into the fight. I have chosen to do it, knowing well the hazards of my choice.

I serve a Divine Creator who goes before me and follows behind me. It is my pledge to uphold His honor and prestige in all that I am and all I do.

I am an elite trooper; a Praying trooper, a Worshipping trooper, a Word-wielding trooper. I blaze the way to far-flung goals, all behind, before, and above the foe’s front line.

I know that the fight will last until the return of Christ, my Captain. Therefore, I keep mind and body always fit to do my part in any HEIRBORN task. I fight hard and excel in every art and artifice of war.

I never fail a fellow trooper. I cherish as a sacred trust the lives of brothers with whom I serve. Leaders have my fullest loyalty, and those I lead will never find me lacking.

In peace, I do not shrink the dullest of duty nor protest the toughest training. My weapons and equipment are always combat ready.

In battle, I fear no foe’s ability, nor underestimate his prowess, power and guile. I fight him with Prayer, Worship and the Word of God.

I belong to a proud and glorious team; the HEIRBORN, Central Church, and the global Church. I am its chosen vessel to fight where others may not or cannot go, to serve them well until the final victory.

In peace and war I never fail. Anywhere, anytime, in anything,

I AM HEIRBORN!

 

The Word – Heirborn

The Worth – Because of Christ, I have an inheritance awaiting me in heaven. I also have the power of God in me right now. This is so I can live like the man I was created to be!

The Work – Because God’s power resides in me, I have a duty. I should not go to heaven by myself! My world can be influenced for God because of God in me. Because I am Heirborn, God can flow through me to win my world!

Who Am I?

One simple question, who am I?

Go ahead, ask yourself that question. What is your response?

confused man

I have been asking myself this question as of late. And many of the answers were not the right answer for this question. Here is what I mean:

Who am I?

Tim. No, that is my name.

Waiter at the Olive Garden. No, that is what I do.

Husband and father of 2 kids. No, that is my family situation.

Elder at church. No, more of what I do.


You see what I am getting at here? The question really gets to the matter of identity.

What is my identity?

The answer to that question can be elusive.


Easter is a great time of year. It always creates a reflective attitude in me. I like to look back on where I have been and what has been happening in my life. Undoubtably, God has brought me further along that I realize.

This year, I have been asking the question, who am I?

And now I have something about which I can write!

yes!

So far, 2018 has been dry. I have not had the content to write about or even the desire to write. But things are changing. And I want to be on that “Change Train”!

If you feel like taking a trip, read along with me this year. It just might be the best two minutes of your day. I have one simple goal:

To answer the question, “Who Am I?”
who am i

Scrabble and 2018

Zombies…Zenith…Zealous…

These were my choices, at least the ones I thought of for today.

Honestly, all three of them had potential in them to wrote about.

And then it struck me. Z is the last letter. The end of the alphabet. The last one.

It is the letter that comes after all the other letters are spoken. A to Z.

And now for you Scrabble geeks…

The Word – Zee (The letter Z is spelled Zee)

The WorthRevelation 1:8 says it all, “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, “who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

God is the beginning (Alpha) and the end (Omega).

Omega is the last letter of the greek alphabet

Everything started with Him and everything will end with Him.

My years here on this earth are just a short blip on the radar of all time.

He knew me before I ever drew a breath. My life is in His hands.

If you read the rest of Revelation, crazy things will happen.

But at the end of it all, God will be left standing.

And we can stand with Him!

I find great comfort in that truth.

The Work – We can get caught up in making resolutions and goals for 2018. The slate is clean so we try not to get it dirty again. That is great and all but it seems that it is just a matter of time before we fall back, break resolutions, or make a mistake.

But God is in the end! So let’s try to live with the end in mind.

Put your hope, faith, trust in who God is and live for Him. That is how 2018 is going to be the best year of our lives!

Thank you friends for taking two minutes out of your day to read these posts.

I am trusting God for amazing things in 2018, see you next year!

2018