The 5th letter is…

March! I missed it! Wow, how did I not post the last month? Not sure exactly…

Regardless, I am moving forward in this series, Alphabet soup.

So far this year, I have posted 4 times (5 including this one). As you may have already noticed, I am following a pattern. There is a word for each post and I started with Absolute. Breathtaking, Committed, and Diligent followed.

All of these words describe God. Today the word will start with ‘E’.

letter e

The Word – Essential

The Worth – Sometimes people use words in the wrong context. I work at an Olive Garden. I hear the phrase, “I am starving” literally everyday! Sometimes from the customers and sometimes my co-workers but usually from both! Do these people know what starving means!?!? Starving does not mean that you are so hungry because you have not eaten since breakfast! These people are not starving so I wish they would just say that they are hungry!

Essential means ‘absolutely necessary.’ Water is absolutely necessary in order to live. It is essential. Food is also essential. These are things that needed in order to live.

God is essential. In John 15, Jesus spoke some words. In this sermon, he did not exaggerate. He did not speak out of context. The words he spoke were accurate. So much so that we need to take heed and listen. Here is verse 5 from that chapter;

5“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

john 15-5

Jesus said that without God, we can do nothing. Again, no embellishment in these words. The Son of God chose these words specifically and with a purpose. God is essential!

He wanted us to know that God is essential. We would not even be able to breathe unless God gave us the ability to do so. Death would happen. We just cannot do it on our own.

That is the penalty of sin. It is death. Physical and spiritual death.

But he gives more grace.

By the grace of God, he sustains us. He lets us live. He bestows grace so that we can come to Him and surrender our lives and follow Him.

The Work – Too many times, we try to live and succeed on our own power, talent, or perseverance. Stop it! I think that you and I need to try to abide (stay connected through consistent and constant relationship with Jesus). If and when there are mistakes, we can go to God for more grace. He loves us and the Bible tells us that His anger is only for a moment but his love is forever. see Psalm 103 

Stay tuned for the letter ‘F’. I am guessing that it will be a word that one usually does not ascribed to God. And, it just might be the best two minutes of your day!

2 minutes

Thank you and enjoy His grace today!

 

 

AB+ and 44

Today is my birthday. It was a pretty decent day. I had some great family time. Work was enjoyable. Had lunch with my wife which is rare so that was pretty awesome.

happy-birthday-meme

Now I am writing this blog. I have not written since late July. Taking time off was planned but not this much time. This blog has been good for me. It helps me to process what I read in God’s word and what I hear God telling me.

Back to the birthday. I am 44 today. Is that middle-age? Whatever 44 is called, so be it.

My life began 44 years ago. At some point, I became born again. For me, there is not a specific date that I can call my “spiritual” birthday. But I know it has happened. On that day, the blood of Jesus washed my sins away.

The blood of Jesus is an interesting thing. Somewhat morbid if you ask me. And then the bible says that though my sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow. How can blood do this? What is so important about the blood that Jesus spilled while hanging on the cross? How can I be forgiven? More about this in upcoming blogs.

My blood type is AB+. In my adulthood, I have donated about 3 gallons. Take a look at this chart.

blood-types-red1

According to the chart, only AB+ people can receive my blood. On the other hand, I can receive from any type. Good deal for me.

Again, according to the chart, Jesus must have been O- because anyone can receive His blood.

He is the universal donor. Because today is my birthday, I have been thinking a lot about my life and all the it encompasses.

Of this I am sure: Jesus is my life. His blood purifies me from sin. His blood gives me victory over sin. His blood empowers to live like He wants me to live.

As I stated, I will explore the Blood over the next few posts.

Can I leave you with two questions though?

Do you remember your spiritual birthday?

If not, would you like to have one?

Biology and the Bible: Can they be friends?

I have two college degrees. Bible and Biology. Some people might think that those two topics are like oil and water, i.e. they do not mix. I wholeheartedly disagree. Not only can they go together but they even support each other. Keep reading and see if you agree with me.

Let’s start with Biology. biology-blackboard

You and I are living things. The plants, trees, and flowers are living as well. Bugs, birds, and all other animals are living creatures. But is a rock a living thing? How does one determine what is living and what is not living? After doing some research, there are characteristics that an object must possess to be considered living. Some sources might say there are 7 things and others say 6. For my purpose here, I will adhere to this rule:

For an object to be considered living, it must demonstrate the following 6 characteristics.

 

Here is a list of each category and a short description:

1. Cells – Living things are composed of cells

2. Organization – Living things are organized at the molecular and cellular level

3. Metabolism – Living things use energy

4. Homeostasis – Living things maintain stable internal conditions

5. Growth – Living things grow as a result of cell division and cell enlargement

6. Reproduction – Living things have the ability to produce

There it is. The filter of questions that can be asked of literally anything. If the “thing” in question has a positive response for all 6 categories, it is living. To make this more easily understood, ask these questions of yourself.


 

Do I have cells? Yes.

Are those cells organized in some way? Yes.

Do I use energy? Yes.

Do I maintain a stable internal condition? Yes.

Do I grow? Yes.

Can I reproduce? Yes.


 

Congratulations! You are alive! As if there was any doubt! =-)

Now let’s take a look at the Bible.bible 2

Please read I Peter 1:3, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,.” For the whole chapter, click I Peter 1.

Let me focus on two words, living hope. Hope is a great thing. In fact, you can read some of my earlier writings about Hope. But we can be born into a living hope. That seems to be better than just regular hope, right?

Let’s mash things up and see what we get.


 

Does my Hope have cells? Yes. I can read about my hope in every book of the Bible. I can talk to other Christ-followers. I can pray and worship.

Are those cells organized in some way? Yes. Church is organized. My Bible is organized. Even my prayers can be organized.

Do my Hope use energy? Yes. Following Christ is work but that Hope keeps me motivated!

Does my Hope maintain a stable internal condition? Yes. Regardless of what is happening outside, my hope remains stable on the inside.

Does my Hope grow? Yes. Certainly! My maturity level goes up which in turn allows my hope to increase as well.

Can my Hope reproduce? Yes. When I share my hope with others, I am, in essence, reproducing what God has done in me.


And there you have it. You have just successfully blended the Bible and Biology.

Now go and enjoy the living hope into which your were born!