Sunday, November 29, 2009

Christianity is Not the Big List of Don'ts

2 Corinthians 3:17
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

Christianity is not a big list of don’ts. I have had a few conversations with people lately that I wanted to share. First, I had a niece ask me why my child can’t watch “Wizards of Waverly Place”, or Harry Potter, and other things. I explained to her that Morgan has a few things that she can’t watch but she also has a lot of things that she can watch. My niece was telling me in the car about a friend that she has that was not allowed to have facebook and a list of other things because her family are “big Christians”. Well, that is up to her parents but I don’t want Morgan to see a big list of everything that she can’t do. When you try to just take everything away from a child in the name of “Christianity” it really sets your child (or anyone for that matter) up to run as far as they can from any legalism or “religion”. Don’t get me wrong there are things that we just plain need to stay away from. Things that we need to flee. But good grief let us be known for our love of Christ and others and not just for a big list of what we can’t do. Good Grief!! Let’s not just portray ourselves as some communist religion. Christ died that we might live in freedom through the power of the Holy Spirit, not in bondage to sin. Do we use our freedom in Christ as a license to sin? NO! Romans 6:1-2 1What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?
God is not boring. We may be bored stiff with our religion but we can’t be bored with God, the Lord of Glory. Romans 12:21 says “21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” There is a lot of evil in this world yet we can also use the internet and other things for good, instead of just writing everything off as evil. There are some clear don’ts in the word of God but they are always for our protection. 1 Corinthians 6:12 says that 12"Everything is permissible for me"—but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible for me"—but I will not be mastered by anything. Also, when people say things that they watch do not affect them, they are the exception, I want to tell them to argue with God then: “Luke 11:34
34Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are good, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are bad, your body also is full of darkness.”
Garbage in garbage out. The Lord Jesus is the best thing that has EVER happened to me. I can not get over Him. I was in my car today just having a time of worship in the Word of God and I just told Him that I was not sure why in the world He had not given up on me. I deserve NOTHING from Him, yet He is so lavish with His love. I have sinned so greatly against Him. Why in the world would He contend with me, I do not know. He has disciplined me out of His great love as well. Listen, I desperately want a heart that beats of Deut 6:5-9. I want to love the LORD with all of my heart.
'For in him we live and move and have our being.' Acts 17:28 a
We have got to get it through our thick skulls that He is Life. He is where real living is.
Deut. 30:20 and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life, and he will give you many years in the land he swore to give to your fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
There is nothing in all of life that compares to knowing Him. There is no greater moment in my life than when I am spending time with Jesus and knowing Him through His word. Just like Adam and Eve we tend to consider what a relationship with the Lord will cost us. What will we have to give up? We focus on the one tree He says no to instead of all of the yeses that we have in Christ. There is no greater feeling to me than when I am just caught up in praise to Him. Even obedience, maybe sometimes a LONG obedience is freeing.
Here is a question that I can give a resounding answer to:
Romans 6:20-23
20When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. 21What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death! 22But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Seriously, though stop with me and ask yourself what stinking benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of?
I just shake my head and groan and some of the stupid “make Jenny happy” decisions that I have made, those decisions are the things that have cost me big time. They were damaging, shameful, and cost me a whole lot of pain. Following Christ may be costly but it is worth the cost. Leaving God for my own path is the biggest cost to my soul in all of life.
Today, I literally got all emotional over the fact that I have had a certain bible for 4 years this December and that it is time for me to get a new one. I almost bawled in Lifeway, but the girl working there was not ready for me to start crying. You have no idea what the Word of God has done for me or what all I have been through with the Lord in the last 4 years with that bible. It is so dear to me. I can hardly stand the thoughts of getting a new one but I know there will be completely new journeys with the next. Listen though I would be so far in a ditch without Jesus and His word and my church that it is not even funny. I praise Him for the blast that I get to have with Him and the way I get to know Him. Who are we that He is mindful of us? But He is. Crazy Love.

Bookmark and Share


Ruth said...

I'm with you on that Jenny. I felt way too many don'ts growing up and not so many do's. It's when the don'ts are just a formality that really gets me. I don't want to do that to my kids. I think Wizards of Waverly place is a good clean show. It may involve magic but not evil. It also doesn't involve real occult practices but a made up fantasy. I think people need to recognize the difference and not say no to everything. It just breeds rebellion and kids who can't think for themselves. I am more interested in what is going on in my kid's heart. The bible says that it's not what goes in that defiles but what comes out of the heart.

Pttyann said...

Amen! Jenny Amen beautifully said let's walk in "Love",have a wonderful evening Jenny.
Love ya