Thursday, July 10, 2014

Frankly my Dears, it IS a Big Deal...


I am unsure what qualifies someone to take on the subject of sex, especially when it comes to the right's and wrong's of it.  What I can say is that I am on the opposite end of the naive spectrum and I have the emotional scars and baggage to prove it.  My husband and I both do.  We've said on occasion that we are the poster family for this particular topic.  We are the walking reasons why God laid down these boundaries.  We live out the consequences daily.  Perhaps  that's why I have such a need to write about it and carry such a burden about it for others.

If we believe that God is Creator, then we must, by default, believe Him to also be the Creator of sex.  That's an odd concept to deal with for some, mentioning God and sex together; but it is in fact His design (ALL sex was His idea to begin with). As Matt Chandler, a Dallas pastor, once said, "It's not like God looked down with a gasp and said, 'WHOA!  What are you two doing?'" 

As the supreme and single creator of sex, He of course had a plan and purpose for it; hence its creation.  The same can be said for anyone who invents anything.  For example, I don't know who invented the rake, but someone did.  It was invented for the primary purpose of raking leaves into piles.  Now, I'm sure that a rake has been used numerous times for something other than its intended purpose (i.e. killing snakes, breaking a window, etc.) and it actually works for those tasks. But its primary design and purpose is how it works best.  So, having said that, can we all agree that God, being the creator of sex, knows how it is supposed to work?  I think that's a more than fair assumption.  And by the way- He meant it to be pleasurable and fun...between husband and wife.  When done outside of the boundaries set, there are consequences.  Some immediate.  Some not-so.
 
For most of us, this ship has sailed and reading about it might seem like a waste.  To that, I would say, we all know children (be it our own or others) in our lives that need to be shown Biblical sex and boundaries. Secondly, this is not purely about premarital sex.  It's about all sexual sin.  This is for people of all walks whether married,  divorced, widowed, separated, or single.   Furthermore, even if you've been in, or are in, the pit of sexual depravity and you feel like there's no hope or it's too late for you- redemption is the sweetest thing on planet earth and it can absolutely be yours- as I well know.

I don't write about this topic without the foreknowledge that it is a non-issue today- it gets an eye-roll at best.  Even the Church as a whole isn't dealing with it anymore.  A blind eye is turned.  It's the sin that gets an "out".  This is partially due to the fact that we are in fact, sexual creatures and it is a natural part of our lives.  And of course, there are the "worse" and cardinal sins- murder and the like- that need addressing first. Hoping that you sense the sarcasm there.

Many of us know it's "wrong" or at least "probably not the right thing to do."  I think most people from all walks would agree that sex is probably best in a marriage relationship.  After all, that's what most people are raised to believe and it just seems right. But it feels like a "natural" sin- and if we are being honest, being good is just not as fun- and way too hard.  So, we feel it's so much easier to just ignore it. (And you feel that since most everyone else is doing it too, you aren't going down alone).  I have to tell you- I've been there.  But, my goal is in this piece is to celebrate what God has actually done in this area.

Sex in our culture is everywhere and here's what seems to be the theme from the masses (even the so-called Christian masses): "It's just a physical act.  It doesn't have to mean anything significant.  It can be just a physical  act between two consenting people for fun.  It's healthy!"
Ponder with me, if you will: if sex were just a physical act, why do rape or molestation victims have a much harder and longer recovery than someone who was only physically assaulted (beaten, etc.)?  A cut or bruise will heal, and it can definitely carry some scars.  But rape and/or molestation touches deep, emotional caves.  Why?  Because sex was created to be an emotional act- not just a physical one.  There's a reason for that...

Many of you, with a church background-or even a history of attending weddings- will have heard that marriage is a picture of Christ and His Church.  This is one of those sentences that normally goes in one ear and right out the other. It's such a "ritual saying" that we don't really notice it.  Few of us ever stop to think about what it really means.  It states the actual purpose of marriage.  Through our marriages, we are supposed to be showing the world how Christ loved, lived and died for His Church (The groom representing Christ, the bride representing the Church).  Tall order, huh?  IMPOSSIBLE one without Christ.  Those aren't just words that sound good in a marriage ceremony- they're action words.  Our marriages are in and of themselves, a ministry!

Let's flashback for a brief history lesson to our Jewish ancestors in the Old Testament.  God made it known that He wanted to dwell with His people.  So, He gave His people very specific requirements (you can read about these in Leviticus and other parts of the Old Testament) to build a place where His Spirit could dwell there with them.  This was to be known as the Tabernacle.  The Tabernacle was a Holy place made up of many parts.  Among other things like worship, animal sacrifices were made here for the sins of the people.  One part of the Tabernacle in particular was placed behind a curtain or veil. It was called the "Holy of Holies."   This place was so Holy, so sacred, that not just anyone could enter. .  It housed the Arc of the Covenant.  The Arc was crafted based on the image of the great Throne Room of God revealed to those who made it. This arc was the earthly dwelling place of God’s actual presence separated from the rest of the temple where men dwelt..  It could only be accessed once a year and only by a high priest who would enter into God's presence for all of Israel and make atonement for their sins.

Let's fast forward several hundred years to the death of Christ.  As He took His last breath on the cross, the veil (curtain) was torn from top to bottom.  Gotquestions.org says, "In a sense, the veil was symbolic of Christ Himself as the only way to the Father (John 14:6). This is indicated by the fact that the high priest had to enter the Holy of Holies through the veil. Now Christ is our superior High Priest, and as believers in His finished work, we partake of His better priesthood. We can now enter the Holy of Holies through Him."  After Christ ascended to heaven, He left a Helper, or the Holy Spirit to help His people.  When we accept Christ as our Savior, the Spirit takes up residence within us.  Folks, this is the SAME Spirit that was housed in the Tabernacle. The same Spirit that could only be accessed once per year.  So Holy, it was separated and inaccessible.  We (you and me)- believers in Christ- are now the Holy, Sacred, Tabernacle where the Spirit takes residence!  Paul told us this in 1 Corinthians 6:18-20 , "Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body."  Our bodies, if we have accepted Christ, are the dwelling place, the Tabernacle, for the Spirit of God.  (I am convinced that's the most gigantic piece of information that we could ever take in!)  The Jews wouldn't dream of defiling such a Holy Place!  It wouldn't be a thought about concept.  To do so would be worse than death!  If we are the new Tabernacle, should the same not apply?

Sexual sin has serious consequences.  No one knows that more than my husband and I.  While yes, we are redeemed and restored, God does not shield us from the harsh consequences of our choices.   God dealt with sexual sin in the Bible very sternly. You can read quite a few stories about it (email me if you'd like to know where).   Paul tells us in Hebrews 13:4 , "Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous."  It's not to be taken lightly- even in a "sexed up" culture such as ours.

Side note: God's Word is the same 2000 years ago as it is today, and if He delays His coming, it will be the same in another 2000 years.  If He's all-knowing, He knew exactly where we would be in culture today, yet still chose the same words.   Never be misled to think that just because we "live in a different age" that things change.  Trends change, moods change and attitudes change, but humanity stays the same, and so does God's Word. 

A final thought:  if God says it, He has a reason.  God isn't proud so He doesn't have to flex His power muscles by spewing demands for us to follow.  He tells us not to do something to protect us.  Protecting our hearts is of far greater importance to Him than any other protection.


Photobucket
© 2014 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Right is Right


Right is right even if no one is doing it and wrong is wrong even if everyone is doing it.

 Drink that one in.   At this juncture in our history and culture, no words ever rang more true.

I’ll blame a bit on my age, but I intensely hope that it’s more a work of the Holy Spirit giving me a deeper understanding (as He says He will do Luke 24:45); but I have a real problem with the “Tolerance Bug” we have going around regarding many hot topics.  In the past several years, Christians have been labeled, “bigots,” “hate mongers,” and (my favorite), “intolerant.”   All of a sudden, because we fail to embrace something we know to be sinful, we’re closed minded, hate-filled, intolerant bigots.  Really?  Just ten years ago, this was not the case.  More and more people are changing their stance on a variety of issues and it makes me question, are they just plain scared of being in the minority?  I feel this is more a case of not wanting to go against the grain, like high school for adults.  We’re afraid of not being in favor of the popular choice.

I also see this as a classic case of rationalizing our sins.  We hate so much to admit that we are sinners and do wrong, so we are on a mission to make everything “OK”.  “Do what works for you!  Do what feels good to you!”  This message can be found pasted on every facet of our culture from magazines to TV ads and anywhere in between.  My question is, where’s the line?  What is next on our “embracing” list?  Something to think about.

I suppose I am intolerant in many ways.  (I would advise you not to hold your breath waiting on an apology).  Let me tell you what else I am:  forgiving, loving, imperfect and redeemed.  I have more flaws than I could list here.  And that’s where the “Don’t judge me’s” come in.  If I had even a nickel for every time I hear “don’t judge me” in social media, I’d have enough to go somewhere really, really nice…and stay a while.

Many people- Christians included- don’t understand that the word “judge” can be used in two different ways within Scripture.  One definition means to “judge between things, differentiate or discern.”  In other words, we can tell the difference between what is good and evil, right and wrong.  This particular type of “judging” is not the one that Jesus forbade.  Actually, it’s quite the opposite.  There are many times throughout Scripture we are commanded to practice discernment.  We are actually called to differentiate between right and wrong- to judge.  Yes, Jesus said we are not to judge, but he was speaking of the “condemning” judgment.  No one, other than God, has the power to condemn; nor should we even entertain the thought.

As a Christian, we have to take a stand and discern between right and wrong.  Call a spade a spade, even if you are the only one calling it.  There’s no room for conformity in Christendom.  We aren't to worry about being in the minority.  Frankly, it’s a package deal when the Spirit draws us to Himself.

Photobucket

© 2013 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Lay Down my Guns



Not to worry- this post is not a political rant on disarming Americans and the Second Amendment. That's another blog on another day. Rather, it's about a song that has certainly snagged on my heartstrings. I find it worthy of sharing and hopefully you will feel a tug or two as well.

My husband and I recently attended a Sanctus Real Concert with a few others from our LIFE Team.  I've been a fan for quite a while and have seen them in concert once before.  I decided to dig out  a few of their old CD's to listen to before we went.  Tucked in the middle of one of the albums is a gem of a song entitled...  wait for it... "Lay Down my Guns."  To say I love this song is quite an understatement.  Of course, tunes are catchy and rhythms are contagious- but good lyrics are moving.  Here's a sample:   

Well I just need a place to lay my head.
Forget the chain that hangs around my neck.
These guns are not as heavy as the hearts they defend.
I can't wait to get back home where I can find some rest.

When I lay down my guns and lift my hands.
Surrender to Love and live again.
May this desert reach its end where my new life begins,
When I lay down my guns and lift my hands.

I've probably heard this song dozens of times.  But we all know it most often takes a certain season of life for something to speak to you freshly.  As I listened to these lyrics again and again, new life was breathing into them-and into me!  All I could do was picture myself handing over my issues, frustrations, failures and problems to Christ...literally placing them into the palms of his hands from mine.  My load felt lighter and praises danced off my tongue.  

The realization that Christ can, and will, fight your fights is a profound place to come to in your walk.  It's not head knowledge, though; it's soul knowledge.  It's beautiful that before we lift our hands, we must lay down our guns (which, honestly, do we really think we have more capable weapons in our arsenal than our Creator?  He's not only more capable; He's worthy).  Once the guns are down, and hands are lifted, they're empty.  We've nothing left to cling to in this earthly realm.  Only praise, adoration and worship are left.  That's right where we're supposed to be.  And frankly, that's all we need to fight the best fight we've ever fought.
  


Photobucket © 2013 Chrissy Tucker.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Devotion -Revisited

In late 2011, I spoke to a group of women in Des Moines on the topic of devotion. Here's snippet of that, with a new tweak or two...

Devotion is defined as: Profound dedication; consecration; earnest attachment to a cause or person. When we think of devotion, a number of images might come to mind.  Perhaps a mother to her children, a devoted citizen, worker, wife or husband. But Paul takes it one step further. In Romans 6:16-18 he says,


 "Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?  But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness."

He goes on to call us "slaves of God" in verse 22. Don't miss this gals!  Paul just called us slaves!

Take a look at the definition of a slave (courtesy of Thefreedictionary.com): 1) One bound in servitude as the property of a person or household; 2)One who is abjectly subservient to a specified person or influence; 3)One who works extremely hard or doggedly; to toil.

That certainly redefines this concept of devotion, doesn't it? We are called to be slaves for Christ!

While our husbands are certainly the head of our home (or should be anyway,) we as women carry a certain “power” or dare I even say, “responsibility” to set the tone of our households. What I mean is simply this: When it is apparent that you are devoted, or enslaved, to your walk with Christ, then your home, your husband and your children will be uplifted and inspired- and are more likely to follow suit. We’ve all heard the saying, “When Mama ain’t happy, ain’t no one happy.” Well, the opposite is also true! When we find ourselves devoted and joyful, no matter our circumstances- that has power!  I know if I’m in a bad mood, my husband will shortly follow. If the girls are with us, they sense it too and it sets a tone for our evening. Sometimes I don’t like having that type of power- but I do. We all do.

Our sense of devotion- to anything, bad or good- can be contagious. Have you ever seen someone so dedicated to a cause of some sort that you find yourself excited, and even interested, even if you may have never been interested in something like that before? Our fervor for Christ can be just as contagious.

So how do we gain this devotion, or this attitude of servitude? I think the base we build it on is what I call the triple-D: DEVOTION DESPITE DETAILS. Circumstances change, we change, others change, moods change. But He never does. Despite anything that may be going on in our lives, He is still sovereign. He still reigns! He still deserves our devotion. When we can recognize that…IT …CHANGES…THE…GAME!

Have you witnessed someone seemingly so devoted to Christ, only to fall away after a parent or loved one is stricken with a disease? Maybe someone, heaven forbid, loses a child and they walk away from the Lord. I don’t pretend to know or ever want to know this kind of loss. But we’ve all seen it.

I was watching a 9/11 10th anniversary special recently. It was talking about the faith of some of the family members of those lost, after the tragedy. They were asking, “Where was God on that day?” One woman, who lost her precious husband, said she now can’t even bare to speak to God anymore, let alone worship him because she feels so abandoned.  I have tried to put myself in that place and think how I may feel, although it’s impossible to know. I pray to God that I wouldn't make the same statement!  I love my husband- Y'all, I love that man! I don’t want to know this life without him. I plead with God that I never have to know. But what I do know is that whether he walks into the house and gives me a loving hug every day or not…God still reigns! He is still sovereign, and He still deserves my devotion.

Where was God that tragic day? He was everywhere. He was under that rubble. He was outside those windows. He was on those planes. He was in the midst of every family who received bad news that day.  Do you know that 50,000 people worked in those 2 buildings? 50,000! And while every single life is beautiful, precious and significant, we only lost 3,000 that day. 3,000 out of 50,000! Oh, friends, God was there that day. But here’s the thing: even if we had lost 50,000 souls that day, guess what? God still reigns! He’s still sovereign, and He still deserves our devotion.

We frequently hear of pastors or Christians in other countries that refuse to renounce their faith and are imprisoned.  That’s devotion! That’s enslavement!

Devotion despite the details, no matter how tiny or enormous those details may be.  When our children witness that kind of devotion in our lives, it plants a seed that we can’t fully grasp! God can do a lot with a tiny seed. A seed with Christ is beyond what we can comprehend! When our husbands see this type of devotion, it inspires them to be a better leader for their families. It can change everything. Devotion is contagious!

This is the foundation we must lay. When that foundation is understood, and applied, everything else falls into place.  Let's plant a seed and change the game.


Photobucket © 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Slow Down!

Well, another birthday is upon me.  Could somebody tell me how to slow this ride down?  Good grief!  I've always been told it will go faster and faster with each passing year.  Somebody knew what they were talking about! 

I distinctly remember being a young girl of 13 laying in bed one fall night.  I was thinking about what it might be like when I was an adult and how far away that seemed.  That poor little girl just had no clue!

It gently reminds me that the Bible warns us about the short life we are given.  James says in his letter, “For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” (4:14).  We have to make the most of the time we have.  We have but just a small amount of time to bring as much glory to God as we can and teach others about Christ.  As hard as it can be for us to accept and wrap our small minds around, this really is only a temporary place for us, and then we're called home.  I want my "vapor" to make a mark for the Lord.
 
So, as I embark on yet another year, I hope I can make much of my Savior.  He's so worthy!





Photobucket

© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

I'm Mad!


I'm mad. Join me won't you?

In the midst of writing pieces for the blog, I suddenly had a rush of anger come over me!  Real anger.  A raw, emotional occurrence took place.  I hadn't realized how mad I've become.

I'm mad about the state of things in this country- not just politically.  I'm mad about what our families have become as a whole, in such a short time period.  I'm mad at what the American Church looks like and how many of them act.  I'm mad that Christians are all made to look like a bunch of uneducated hillbillies! I'm mad at people who think we should throw all religions into one big pot of stew and believe all paths lead to God (all while holding hands and singing Kumbahya).  I'm REALLY mad at the people who tell us that the Bible is an outdated piece of ancient literature and impractical for use in our modern world.  Shall I go on?  'Cause I can.  Seriously.

The thing is, mad does me no good without action.  Anger only turns into bitterness when it isn't channeled properly.  So, I'm going to channel my anger into writing, which is the best weapon I have at my disposal in my personal arsenal. I'm writing a book!  I hope to make some readers mad too and then we can take that anger and channel it into our relationships, churches and communities.  We have to start one person and family at a time. 

I'm working on a personal plan of action. I encourage you and your family to do the same.

Photobucket


  © 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Fresh Revelation

Hello, my dearest readers!  I’ve been in a season of thinking, praying, and doing.

I have asked God to reveal Himself to me in fresh ways, as we find in John 14:21. As I remain and abide in the Word and in prayer, He promises He will do just that! My greatest mentor, Beth Moore, says that as we abide, God builds up a sort-of concordance in our minds. If we go for a period without using what He’s revealed, we may lose it. Worse yet, He may decide not to reveal any more to us! That is a frightening thought to me! I need those fresh revelations like my next breath. The times that He has revealed things to me have been so profound that I cannot imagine not experiencing it again!

I sincerely hope and pray that you do the same. Let’s break this down: The God of the Universe and Savior of our souls has invited us to seek Him- so that He will reveal more of his mystery and glory to us. How, in a right frame of mind, can anyone turn that invitation down?

Seek Him. Abide in Him. A fresh revelation is just a prayer away.

Photobucket



© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A New Read by Author, Jennie Allen

“What if you told God you would do anything…and He took you up on it?”

What a thought provoking question! It’s just one that Jennie Allen tackles in her new book, anything: the prayer that unlocked my God and my Soul (& yes, my punctuation is correct on that). I have had the privilege to read an advanced copy of the book and I’d like to give you a small preview.

Jennie begins by sharing how she came to the thought process that sent her on the journey of writing this book. Although she came from a faithful, Christian home, something was always missing for her. She had led a “safe” Christian life. One that was well ordered and relatively easy.

A conversation with a friend led Jennie to offer up a question to her professor: How does someone really know God? Her professor gave her an answer that forever changed her. He said, “the only exercise that works 100 percent of the time to draw one close to the real God, is to risk…to risk is to willingly place your life in the hand of an unseen God and an unknown future then to watch him come through…” After hearing his words, Jennie describes what happened next:

“I started craving something that had never seemed acceptable to me until that day…a reckless faith, a faith where I knew God was real because I needed him, a faith where I lived surrendered, obedient, a faith where I sacrificed something…comfort or safety or practicality…something. “

Jennie divides the book into three parts: “everything keeping us from anything,” “praying anything,” and “living anything” (again, punctuation correct). She takes us on a journey from recognizing the need for a change to seeing changes come to fruition in our lives through a different thought approach. She encourages us to take a step back and take a fresh glance at our own, personal faith. She further encourages doing something bold – complete surrender- when we recognize the need to change it. Often, we realize it’s that we have a much smaller view of God than we should.

I encourage you to grab a copy of anything when it’s available. You’ll be blessed!


Photobucket


© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Posh Spirituality

I think by now, if you've followed this blog long enough, you know me well enough to know that I am not concerned with making friends solely by my word choices... hence my post today.  My goal is to call attention to the ludicrous world we live in and step on a few toes (including my own) for the sake of Christ. I'm sure everyone can most likely find at least one thing in my blog personally offensive. I make no apologies there.  It's not that I aim to hurt anyone.  Gracious no! But I am not concerned about being politically correct (heaven forbid)!  I am also not concerned with being labeled, "intolerant". This may be a controversial statement, but the Bible is an intolerant book. God hates sin.  All sin. Period. He hates it so much that He had an elaborate plan to deliver us from it.  Because we are human, we cannot fathom that an intolerable God can also be inclusive and loving.  In fact, He's the source of love.  In our world, these two ideas can't coexist. That's in our world. Christ is not of this world.  Furthermore, we sometimes use the cross- a tortuous instrument used in slaying our Savior- as a crutch. Christ died for us so we wouldn't have to pay our own toll for sin. That doesn't give us an "out" when we make decisions in our lives that aren't Godly ones. Paul made that very clear. Oh, but we say to ourselves, "I know this is not a Godly decision, but it's just something I have to do for me." How arrogant  that we could ever think ANY of this is about us and our own comfort!

I remember an episode of Oprah a few years ago where she interviewed the author of Eat, Pray, Love. That interview prompted me to buy the book. That book took me on what I saw at the time as a spiritual journey. I will be very transparent for you and tell you that I felt a bit "posh" after reading it.  I thought I was tolerant, thoughtful,  and even profound.  I wanted to travel and eat delicious, gourmet food with all the chic "trophy" friends in my life.  You know, the homosexual friend, the friend of another race, the foreign friend, the eclectic friend, the male friend, etc.  and we could all sit around a giant table, passing salad, bread, and pasta, sipping our wine and rejoicing in our tolerance and chicness; discussing our  love for all the world, after meditating, of course.

I now realize how ridiculous and far away from Christ I really was.  Not because of my friend choice or our discussions, but because of my arrogance and need to "update" the character of God to fit this modern world.  That book was actually about a woman who abandoned her husband because she just didn't "feel" it anymore.  I'm paraphrasing, but she basically says God told her to leave because he wanted her to be happy (this is in direct opposition to God's true character shown in his Word).   She traveled to Europe and Asia where she ate amazing food, found some new friends, and ended up in India at an ashram- searching for nirvana and "god".  (That's the short version).  I truly thought I was spiritually minded and grounded at that time in my life.  How sad that our society has this type of influence on us that it blinds us to ourselves!  People want to make Christ into this hippie "love and peace" character, when He's no such thing!  He does teach an aspect of peace; a peace only He provides.  He obviously teaches us about love.  Read the Word of God and tell me if you find the hippie character.  He's not in there (I'll save you a couple thousand pages). 

We don't come to Jesus because of his popularity.  In fact, it's the opposite.  We come to Jesus despite His UNpopularity.  He told us that we'd be hated for His cause.  When we try to "broaden our mind" as the world says we should,  and reconstruct our faith to rationalize our decisions in life that don't include or honor Him, then we are not following Him.  We're actually following self and using the name of Christ to tie a big red bow on it to make it marketable to the world.  Living for self and for the world.  Using Christ's banner and name for our own selfish purposes is a terrifying thought.  He is patient and may allow us to get away with it for a while, but I certainly don't want to be in the throne room with that charge on my account.

Photobucket


© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

ALL Things


This morning I was fretting and thinking of something that I must do but don't feel like I have the strength or the power.  Almost immediately, my thoughts were flooded with whispers and scriptures. This has been a running theme lately, if you've been reading- and it's pretty awesome. {If you don't know the Lord Christ Jesus as your personal savior- you are missing out! Email me and let me introduce you.} Anyway, the popular scripture "I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me" rang over and over. Then, Christ revealed to me that my doubts were quite simply, sinful. Who are we talking about here?

The God who created the entire universe in six days.
The God who delivered a whole nation of people countless times from sure death and annihilation.
The God who parts seas and sends meat and manna to the middle of the desert. 
The God who is not limited by time, resources or earthly physics, even though He created them all.
The God who conquered evil and death by sending his Son as an infant; sacrificing Him and raising Him up again to reign with Him in heaven! (you can't make this stuff up, people).

And my little issue is going to be a problem for the Highest and Holiest?  Um...no.  The. End.

Photobucket



 © 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Short, Sweet & Not About Love

Because today is the greeting card holiday celebrating love, I will go against the grain and select another topic. You will be inundated with all things "love" all day. I will not contribute to the assault!

Since I've been rather windy in my posts recently, I'll keep things short and sweet today.  I just want to give you something to think about.

I'm reading a book entitled, "The Circle Maker" by Mark Batterson.  In short summary, it's about praying hard and long for big miracles in your life.  It's not a "name it, claim it" or "health, wealth and prosperity" read.  It teaches deep, meaningful faith in God.  It's about trusting Him, even when we don't get the answer we are looking for.  It reaches beyond that as well.  Batterson challenges us to think about how much we actually want what we pray for.  How long and hard are we willing to pray for it?  Are we willing to stay up all night, drain ourselves of  tears, plead and agonize?  Sometimes for years?   When we aren't willing to do that, we forfeit huge miracles.  When we are, we are walking miracles- bringing glory to God.  Tough topic.

I encourage you to get a copy and challenge your heart in this area of prayer.


Photobucket


 © 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Mean God

If there is one thing that has kept me from completely surrendering to Christ in every area my life, it's the notion of suffering. I would always keep God at arm's length because I didn't want trials and afflictions in my life. The ironic part is, I had them anyway because we live in a fallen and imperfect world. Just as ironic, I contributed to my own suffering by keeping the Spirit of God at bay- the one thing that brings peace and fills the void that we all possess. Oh, if we could grasp that concept in our time of need!  I spoke on a similar topic back in October. The blog portion of that can be found here

I've encountered so many people that are angry with God.  They have been dealt a raw hand and they're mad! They see God as mean.  Some people have made a series of decisions that put them in a bad place. Others were simply placed there.  Some have lost loved ones or been stricken with sickness, watched their children suffer or have been abandoned by a spouse.  They can't imagine that a loving God would allow this to happen to them.  Some even scream, "I've been good!  I've lived a right life and this is my reward?

There are so many things to say on this topic but I will try to limit myself-I like lengthy.  First and foremost, we have to remember that we got kicked out of Eden.  The fall of man is still in season.  Only in heaven will tears be gone and sickness be a distant memory.  Once we grasp and accept that, we can move forward.

Secondly, Christ and scripture tell us that we will suffer.  It didn't say we might, it said we will.  So why do we act shocked and offended when it comes to pass?  Did we not take Christ at His word?

I've come to realize a couple of other things as well.  (This may sting a little because it stung me!)  When we take on the attitude that we are to be rewarded on this side of heaven- that we've done Christ a favor by "being good"- we've suddenly made it all about us, when it's supposed to be all about Him.  We're saying that we will live for him conditionally- or as long as we're getting something out of it.  That goes beyond selfishness, that's a form of idolatry; the worshipping of self.  OUCH!

Here's another dose of reality for us to chew on:  think about who we regard (traditionally) among the most faithful Christians.  Generally, this would be the apostles.  They knew the Messiah personally.  They walked, talked, ate with and travelled with Christ.  They witnessed His death and His resurrection.  Though not perfect, these were very faithful men.  They lived their whole lives for Christ.  They performed miracles in His name and they preached the Word through their lives.  Did you know all but one died a horrible death?  Putting someone to death in those days was not a quick thing.  It involved excruciating pain and suffering.  Now, let's put that into perspective.  If those men, some of the most faithful of us all, suffered the way they did (which I'm pretty sure none of us will ever experience), then why do we think our lives should be without any suffering?

When we pull through the difficulties of life in the correct way, leaving behind the bitter attitude, we grow.  We have a new outlook.  We may have some scars, but we are stronger.  We now have a testimony and are in a position to help others. Another person may be enduring the very thing we endured and now we can bear witness and offer a hand.  That's mighty and powerful for Christ's kingdom.  More than that, there may be a specific purpose for which God is preparing us.  Only God has the bird's eye view of our life.  He sees what's coming down the road.  We don't.   Becoming bitter and angry only forfeits a coming blessing that we'll never get to see.

When we find ourselves in the trials of life, we must learn to ask God what He's trying to show us.  Ask Him how we can glorify Him through the storm.  "How can this be used in your kingdom?"  If we truly listen to Him and surrender to His will, we just might find that the trials become shorter and less painful.  Easy?  No.  Worth it?  Absolutely!


"For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake."  Philippians 1:29
“In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
 John 16:33
"...count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing." James 1:2-4
"Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you." 
 1 Peter 4:12-14
Photobucket



© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Mr. & Mrs. Jones

As humans we have many fears. Some are rational (such as my fear of the slithery beings), some are not. We tend to let society drive many of our fears (these would be the not-so rational ones). I'm speaking of the fear of not fitting in with our peers. School and adolescence start us off on a great foot (insert sarcastic gesture). Beginning somewhere around fifth grade, we start to see the differences between ourselves and others in our circles. We begin to realize that so-and-so seems to dress better or have a bigger house, or maybe we see that we have a bigger house than so-and-so. We also begin to have a longing to fit in with groups of people. Humans are social creatures so this is not odd, but it can certainly be taken to extreme.  It is in our materialistically obsessed culture. We begin to fear not fitting in or being labeled an outcast.

So after we've been trained in school,  there seems to be a need that has been affectionately labeled as "Keeping up with the Jones'." That intense fear of being different is still there. Gotta wear the right jeans, the right shoes, gotta paint my house the right color(s), gotta get lipo, gotta get botox, gotta have the car that the neighbor's will flip over, and God forbid I be caught dead shopping at Wal-Mart or Dollar General- COLLECTIVE GASP!  Target will suffice in a pinch.  We laugh, but we've seen it. I pray I've never had this attitude.  I don't think I have but sometimes we aren't truly aware of our actions.  Seeing so-called Christians act this way hurts my heart deeply.  If I have acted in this way, then LORD, forgive me.

Is it just me or is this the most unlike Christ someone can be? Why are we trying to impress mere humans? A human, who is made of the same flesh, bones and DNA that we are. No one on this planet has gold, platinum or diamond DNA.  No matter who you were born to, didn't you arrive naked and item-less? The baby in a third world country that was born this morning was just as naked as the baby that was born to the Prince of Wherever. One just happens to get handed over to someone who has the means to clothe him better than the other guy. (As a side note, the rich guy only has the means to clothe the baby better because God deemed it so.  It's actually not the rich man's money.  He's only a steward of the LORD'S riches. One sniff of the LORD'S nostrils can snatch it all away).

This concept just doesn't make sense to me! It's temporary stuff.  Stuff that will rot (including our bodies).  Stuff that in one hundred years will be shattered, torn, and not even thought about.  I can also bet the people who are around at that time will give two shrugs less if  we possessed it or not!  Yet, we are all guilty on some level, myself included.

We have no idea how much energy it sucks out of us when we are constantly worried about Mr. & Mrs. Jones. Even if we are not conscious of it, it resides in the back of our minds at all times, never really giving us a moment's peace.  Judging.  Constantly judging.  Constantly fearing the judgement of others, as if their opinions will hand us plaques of gold if they happen to approve.

As I get older, I do find myself less concerned with the opinions of others and more focused on things of the heart.  That comes from spending more time in the presence of God.  Please don't see that as a "holier than thou" statement, and please don't confuse that as not caring about my reputation. I care that when someone looks at me they see a Christian woman.  I also care that I don't look sloppy or unkept (well...most of the time).  But as for the other things, I am concerned with but one judge- and He is the creator of all!  As I age, I see a few grays sprouting  and a few little wrinkles popping up.  I won't lie, I don't like it . But I worry more about the beauty of my heart because I can actually do something about that.  Sure, I can dye my hair (and I shall) or I can use some wrinkle cream (and I do) but those are temporary fixes on a temporal body.  My heart I will possess throughout eternity.  I am concerned with the kindness I show others.  I am concerned with how respectful I am as a wife.  I am concerned about the way I mother my step-children.  I am concerned with with the eternal. 

Friend, we've already been told that we are different by Christ himself.  The world will hate us for His sake.  This is not our home.  Accept that.  Once you truly do, you'll find your stress level lowers and you have much more time on your hands to focus on what truly matters. Hint:  it's not the Jones'. 

Photobucket

© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Be Still

Recently, a turn of events in our lives has made for more than a little chaos.  Chaos may seem like a strong word; but true to form, I looked it up and it is quite appropriate:  "A state of utter confusion or disorder; lack of order and organization."   Yes, quite appropriate.  If any of you know me personally, you know that this is not kosher to me.  I greatly dislike a lack of organization.  I can't think straight when things are disorderly.  I feel like a dog chasing my tail. 

Last week I stood in my kitchen, surrounded by a sea of boxes and stuff strewn far and wide.  I felt I was on the verge of a small panic attack.  I could literally feel my veins pulsing and my face turning hues of fuchsia.  My brain, which we will politely term here as "the devil" kept saying, "There is no way you will get this all done.  You don't even have a starting point. You'll be living like this forever."   In a recent post I told you that my molehills can become gargantuan peaks pretty easily, if I allow it.  Here I stood in my kitchen, the new Mount Kilimanjaro, feeling helpless and defeated. 

This is where the beauty of our supernatural faith comes in.  As I stood there, overwhelmed, the Holy Spirit ever so slightly whispered and reminded me of the scripture in Psalms, "Be still and know that I am God."  In the midst of my ever-present mess, I felt peace.

Let's analyze for a moment.  It's no accident that the first words He says are "Be still."  It's a command.  If you have children, you will understand that it is important for them to be paying attention to you before you say what you have to say.  It's a little hard to listen when you are running around, dancing, turning flips, or singing to the top of your lungs.  So we gently grab their little faces and say, "Be still and listen to me!"  Once we have their attention, then we say the important stuff.  God is saying, "Hey!  Sit still. Now that you are listening, know that I am your God."   

In our increasingly busy lifestyles, it's really hard to sit still.  God knew centuries ago, when these words were first breathed, that we would live in this type of world.  He knew the value of those words.  It's imperative in our world that we take a few moments daily, and just "know."  When we do that, perhaps we will find ourselves staring less at a "Kilimanjaro" and more at an ant hill. 

Photobucket
© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Unspeakable Peace

The title of this post may suggest there are no words to describe the peace I speak of.  Be that as it may, in the spirit of blogging, I am challenging that thought today.  I warn you in advance, I will come up short.  Every writer who has ever attempted or will attempt to describe it shares this commonality with me, as it is quite frankly, indescribable. 


There are many facets of my personality that lean towards Type A. Some great adjectives that fit this category of people include such words as: aggressiveness, time urgency, short fuse, etc. (Interestingly, "competitiveness" is a major trait for Type A's, and I missed that one altogether. I couldn't be LESS competitive- anyway, I digress). So, needless to say, I can get worked up quickly over seemingly small, and large, things.  Mole hills can become unconquerable mountains in no time flat.  It's a marvelous thing I have the Holy Spirit living within me. Without Him, I'd be left alone to deal with such ridiculousness.  At the height of my anxious fits, the Spirit, through scripture, enters into my worry-filled head, and soothes instantaneously. I sigh relief and remember that Jesus fights my fights, both big and small. 


Forgive the following analogy but I trust that many of you will understand.  Have you endured the joy that is acid reflux?  If you have not been fortunate enough to experience this delight, congratulations.  The rest of us understand what a grand gift the antacid tablet can be.  It's like magic.  Chew it up and voila- the fire is gone (for a period, anyway).  Christ's peace is the antacid, if you will, that quenches our burning anxiety!  (Hey, I asked forgiveness).    


In all seriousness, if you have not experienced the peace of Christ, you are missing out!  At the peak of our struggles, where the world is waiting for us to cave, He enters, with His supernatural peace.  You can't explain it or even understand it.  It just IS.  "I AM", just "IS." 


"And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  Phillipians 4:7


"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give youDo not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."  John 14:27

Photobucket


© 2012 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Established

I keep meditating on a beautiful verse that is a direct promise from God.  Folks, don't take it lightly when God makes a promise.  Humans make promises they don't keep.  We are accustomed to this and take people with a grain of salt when it comes to their word.  God doesn't lie.  In fact, He is the author of Truth.  The verse is Proverbs 3:16.   I want to share it from the NIV version this time because I love the wording it uses there: "Commit to the Lord whatever you do and He will establish your plans."   The action word there is commit.  So my part is to commit and His part is to make it succeed.  The definition of establish, according to dictionary.com, is:  "to found, institute, build, or bring into being on a firm or stable basis."  Firm.  Stable.  Beautiful. 

Notice it says HE will establish your plans.  Not ourselves.  Amazing!  I would much rather the God of the universe establish my plans than little 'ole me.  There are not enough organizational tools in the world that would make me a better establish-er than God Almighty!  Amen? 


Maybe you are starting a new business or venture.  Perhaps you're a full time, in-home wife and/or mom, or maybe you work a full time job outside your home.  Maybe you're single and you minister to other singles.   You could be an athlete training for a marathon or competition.  It doesn't matter.  The verse says whatever you do.  If you want to see success in any single thing you take on, commit them to the Lord.   We all know that more often than not, we fail.  He never has.  He never will.   What can you commit to the LORD in your life and watch it succeed?  Let Him establish your plans today. 


Photobucket
© 2011 Chrissy Tucker.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I'm Good

There are a lot of misinformed people that believe you are a Christian by birth or association, like Judaism and Islam.  This is not the case.  Other people think that by believing in God alone or just by being a “good” person, they’re okay and Heaven awaits them.  This is a dangerous theology.
Did you know that even demons believe in Christ?  Yes.  Those demons.  Actual demons.  Creepy, scary, dangerous, of-Satan-himself, from Hell, demons.   Let’s go to scripture for an eye opening and remarkable story from Mark 5: 1-20
 They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes.  When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him.  This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain.  For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him.  Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him.  He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!”  For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you evil spirit!” Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
“My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.”  And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.  A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside.  The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.”  He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.
Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened.  When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid.  Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well.  Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.  As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him.  Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”  So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.

Let’s take note of a couple of things:  This man that was possessed did not know Jesus personally; he’d never met him before.  But when Jesus exited the boat, the man ran toward Him, and fell on his knees.  Why?  Why would you run to someone you don’t know and fall to your knees?   The man didn’t know Jesus, but the demons did- and they fell at His feet!  They begged Christ not to torture them because they knew He had the power to do so.  That’s powerful y’all!  Demons falling at the feet of Christ and begging Him for mercy!  Just stew on that for a minute.

It is not adequate to “call” yourself a Christian and not follow Christ. It’s also not enough to be a “good person”. Pagans, atheists, and the like all have a moral code by which they live.  I know plenty of them!  I know many people who are good, moral, warm-hearted, compassionate people, yet they don’t know Christ!  They,  and the world, believe they will be in “Heaven.”  God’s word says no such thing.  It says:

"No one is good – except God alone" (Mark 10:18; Luke 18:19).

&

Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” (John 14:6)



If there is one thing God is, it’s honest.  He is truth.  Take Him at His word. 

Photobucket

© 2011 Chrissy Tucker.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Hated and Outdated Part IV: In Conclusion

Part I  Part II  Part III

It's pretty clear why we are hated and seemingly outdated.  Hated: because we have a guide and voice in our lives that governs our choices.  Then we share that guidance with others who don't want anyone to tell them how to live their lives.  Outdated:  because if we are living as we should be for Christ, we aren't participating in what the world deems "normal" activities that are far from glorifying to our Father.   As Christians, we shouldn't try to mold into social norms, just for the sake of human acceptance.  Seriously, at the end of the day, who cares what mere people think if we are living for God? Even if that person happens to be wealthy or know so-and-so that can get you "in", or be an upstanding member of the community, why do we care?  (All of those things are from an earthly standpoint.  After death, they won't matter one ounce.) We shouldn't be all-out freaks either, mind you. "In the world not of the world." We must live in and amongst a dying world, but not participate in the things that don't bring glory to God. So, that means we are "outdated" from a world view point.

*May I just add a side note here? That stance has always struck me as odd, from an argumentative standpoint. I'm not sure if anyone else in college had the pleasure of taking this class, but I took what was called, "Effective Thinking." It taught critical and analytical thinking skills and effective argumentative points. When someone says, "I can't believe this is still an issue. It's 2011..." this makes very little sense to me. I suppose I understand where they are going; otherwise I wouldn't be talking about it on my blog. But go with me here: technically they are saying that because the second hand has tick-tocked a number of times, we should be more accepting of a certain thought. Does anyone else find that odd? Ok. Now stepping off my soapbox. (and onto another one- *smiles)

Conformity can happen inside the Christian realm too.  If you've been on the church seen long, you see this in some pastors.  In order to "identify" with the youth or a certain crowd of people, many will adapt to certain venues.  While there's nothing wrong with trying to appeal to or find a common ground with a certain crowd, we need to be careful not to change the Gospel in the process!  The Gospel is as true and valid today as it was two centuries ago. God's perfect plan doesn't need perfecting!

People don't enjoy being disliked, rejected or hated.  It's just not fun.  So the human response is to conform to the "norm" so that won't happen.  But when we accepted Christ, it came with the package.  This isn't a bad thing.  Paul tells us in Romans 12:2 "Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."  Go back and read that verse again.  There's a few things tucked in there.  First Paul tells us not to conform to this world.  Then he says to be transformed by the renewal of your mind.  Have you ever thought about what that means?  Or that it's even possible to renew your mind?  This verse is saying that the Spirit can transform and renew our mind, along with showing us the will of God.  We need only stay close to Him, not the world.  That's a promise from God!  Galatians 5:16 says, "But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh."  Christ will make it so we don't even want to do those things!  I am living testament to that!

Let's be honest with one another, shall we?  You cannot be in neutral zone when it comes to Christ!  I've tried.  It can't be done!  You are either completely for Him or completely against Him.  Christ is pretty honest here too in Revelation 3:16: "So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth."  He's saying, "Pick a side!  Do one or the other, but get off the fence because that sickens me." 

So friends, if I may sum this up and tie a big red bow on it...the time for keeping our mouth shut about our faith is over.    We need to choose our allegiance.  If we choose Christ, we need to give Him our ALL. He deserves nothing less.  We should leave no wiggle room for outside forces to mess with our faith!  Stick close to Christ.  Stick to the very Word of God, as your source- even when others dismiss it.  He never changes; only we do that.

Romans 8:31 If God be for us, who can be against us?  

Photobucket


 © 2011 Chrissy Tucker.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hated and Outdated Part III

If you missed the other posts, here’s Part I and Part II. This part is a little lengthier, but please HANG WITH ME!

Can we all pretty much agree that small things added to other small things will eventually equal big things? Simple math. Take for example, if you let little things get to you, over time, they build up and you can blow-up in a big way! I’m sure we can all relate to that one. What if we think in terms of savings? I’ve seen multiple people cash in their daily “small” change for big, dream vacations! Small things add up! So why would it be any different from a faith and lifestyle standpoint? The small things that we rationalize and justify always, not sometimes, always end up leading to bigger things. Seemingly harmless things, added up over time, can cause very harmful things.

Here’s a harmful example. Most people never set out to have an affair. No one makes up their mind one morning that it’s time to go out and have an affair. Usually it starts very innocently and slowly progresses until one day they find themselves in the middle of something and they have no idea how it got that far! The beginning was in no way sinful or shameful; perhaps just an innocent conversation. But added to a look here, a small brush or touch here, etc. eventually = catastrophic. The same can be said for addicts. No one sets out to become an addict. It always starts small and builds. There are hundreds of examples of things like this. We’ve all probably got our own or know plenty of people that do. That’s because evil is ever-present and ever-patient; and we are ever-human.

Today I’d like to just continue to challenge our mindsets. We grow accustomed to the way our society is and we often forget to really think about what is going on around us and how it can affect us. We become tolerant and jaded to so many things. I’ll share just a few examples that most of us have accepted that are "small" things. Warning: at first glance you may roll your eyes! You may dismiss it as ridiculous and overboard. This is my point. Let’s actually think on these things, as “silly” as they may seem. Bear in mind; I too come from that same eye-rolling, dismissive camp.

Are you guilty of the following phrase/variation of the phrase: “Karma is a b****”? If you are unaware of what’s behind the stars, bless you! I’m guilty. I’ll admit it with a head hung in shame. It’s a phrase that is usually used when someone who has wronged us in the past, seemingly gets what they “deserve” or to warn them that they will. It’s meant to be a teasing phrase. Most of us are aware that karma is a word that is used in Hinduism and Buddhism. Truthfully, I'm not sure we really understand the concept of karma. It's much deeper and complex than a simple definition. You almost have to study the religion to get a pretty good grasp on its true meaning. Yoga comes from these Eastern Religions as well. Yoga, to us, is simply a relaxing exercise used to tone and strengthen. Actually, the goal of true yoga is to "empty the mind." Hmmm...that seems to be the complete opposite of God's command in Psalms to "meditate on His Word day and night" which means to never have your mind emptied. Other norms we've let into our language and culture are "Zen," "enlightenment," and "nirvana." These are fundamental concepts of other religions. Here’s some that many of us are familiar with: astrology, numerology, horoscopes and “readings.” There is a misconception that Christians don’t “believe” in these things. As Christians, we should believe these things to be true. The Bible speaks of these things and the people that do them as having power- it’s just not good power. A horoscope may seem harmless enough, but where it comes from is the problem. Here’s what the Bible has to say about these things (and it’s plenty!) God Himself is confirming that it exists! Remember: even DEMONS believe in Christ, and tremble!

He expelled mediums and spiritists from the land, yet then violated God’s word and his own conscience by consulting a medium (1 Samuel 28:3-25). His end was tragic (1 Samuel 31:1-6).

• The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so (Deuteronomy 18:9-14).

• Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed their evil deeds. A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas. In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power (Acts 19:18-20).

• Do not turn to mediums or seek out spiritists, for you will be defiled by them. I am the LORD your God (Leviticus 19:31).

• I will set my face against the person who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute himself by following them, and I will cut him off from his people (Leviticus 20:6).

·         When men tell you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? (Isaiah 8:19).

• And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars—all the heavenly array—do not be enticed into bowing down to them and worshiping things the LORD your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven (Deuteronomy 4:19).

• All the counsel you have received has only worn you out! Let your astrologers come forward, those stargazers who make predictions month by month, let them save you from what is coming upon you. Surely they are like stubble; the fire will burn them up. They cannot even save themselves from the power of the flame. Here are no coals to warm anyone; here is no fire to sit by. That is all they can do for you—these you have labored with and trafficked with since childhood. Each of them goes on in his error; there is not one that can save you (Isaiah 47:13-15).

• Hear what the LORD says to you, O house of Israel. This is what the LORD says: "Do not learn the ways of the nations or be terrified by signs in the sky, though the nations are terrified by them" (Jeremiah 10:1-2).

• In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom (Daniel 1:20).

• Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I am against your magic charms with which you ensnare people like birds and I will tear them from your arms; I will set free the people that you ensnare like birds (Ezekiel 13:20).

God is quite clear that He is a jealous God. "Jealous" in Greek and Hebrew tends to have a slightly different meaning than what we know the meaning to be in English. It just happens to be the best word for translating. I won't go into that here, but basically, God refuses to share His glory with any other god. He is God and He is God alone. We must be careful when we loosely let these other schools of thought into our language and our lifestyle. Satan likes to use the little things. That's how he works best. Then, before we know it, we're into deeper things than we ever intended.

These are just a few examples. If time permitted, we could have many long conversations on this topic alone. Again, it's intended to make us really contemplate what we allow in our lives and if it is offensive to God. I don't know about you, offending our Creator and Savior is just not something I take lightly- anymore.

Photobucket



© 2011 Chrissy Tucker.