Saturday, March 31, 2012


There are so many beautiful things about spring. Flowers, trees, birds, butterflies, bees[well not on or around me], etc. Spring is a time for new growth. Spring is time for celebrating Winter being over and Summer being right around the corner. Spring is also the time for celebrating one of the most important times of our human history. Easter.

Easter is not about candy, eggs, the Easter bunny, and dressing up nice for church that Sunday. It's about the sacrifice that Jesus Christ made for us on the Cross. It's about the depth of the love that our Heavenly Father showed that day to all mankind. He loved us so much that He gave up His One and ONLY Son to die for our sins. For our mistakes. For all the things we get ourselves into that we can't seem to get out of because we're too greedy, stubborn, self-indulgent, selfish, etc. Jesus lived a perfect, sinless life. And He came to do something that no one else that has ever lived or ever will live can do. He came to be a sacrifice to pay the debt that we owe. A debt we could never repay. Because we can never do enough "good things" to be good enough to be right in God's eyes. The only way we can be right with Him is through the cleansing blood of Jesus. The blood He shed on what we know as Good Friday. That day he suffered a horrendous death. He was mocked, scorned, beaten, pierced, broken. For us. He was rejected. While He hung, dying on a cross, His Father turned His back on His Son. While the sins of all mankind were placed on Him--He(Jesus) bore the penalty for us. He paid the price, so that we wouldn't be forever separated from Him. Because our sin separates us from God, we cannot spend eternity with Him based on our own merit. Because like I said before, our "goodness" will never be good enough. It is a surrendering of our lives. Having a faith and belief in who Jesus is and what He did for us over 2,000 years ago. It's a giving up of our old selves and our old ways and living a life that is pleasing to Him. A life that is focused solely on Jesus. See, I haven't mentioned yet why Easter is so important. You see, on the day we know as Easter, that is the day that Jesus came back to life. The day that Jesus defeated death. He defeated death, sin, and hell. That is what Easter is all about. Jesus, His life, His death, and His resurrection.

It's appropriate that we celebrate Easter during the spring. If you look up spring in the dictionary it will tell you that it means: to rise, leap, move, or act suddenly and swiftly, as by a sudden dart or thrust forward or
outward, or being suddenly released from a coiled or constrained position: and to come into being, or arise within a short time. That's exactly what Jesus did. He sprang up from the grave. He did it suddenly and swiftly. When He did so, He showed how powerful that He is and it gave mankind hope for the future. For life. For life after death. You see because of what Jesus did we can now live a life that is full of hope, joy, peace. And once we breathe our last here on this earth, for those of us who know Jesus as our Savior, we will spend all eternity with our Father and His Son.

Jesus was a gift to us. Salvation came through that gift of Jesus. A gift that is freely given to all who believe. "If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved." Romans 10:9. It's something so simple. Yet so powerful and meaningful. Something to be so thankful for and humbled by.

I'm going to leave you with the words to one of my favorite hymns.

"How Deep the Father's Love For Us"

How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure

How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the Chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory

Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers

It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished

I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection

Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom

Monday, March 19, 2012

the cure.

We all know that life is hard. We all face many trials throughout our lives that become increasingly difficult to bear. Sometimes we just want to give up and stop living because it just, quite frankly, hurts way to much. I've had my share of difficult times. Times of great pain and sorrow. Sometimes that pain and sorrow was due to the loss of a loved one. Other times it was when dreams were shattered. And recently, due to health issues that caused quite a scare. But this post is not about me and my pain.

Over the last few days, more and more people that I know and love quite dearly have had to deal with some very difficult things. Over the past several weeks, some people in my family[myself included] have lost a very dear loved one. I've had friends and loved ones lose a grandparent, a student, unborn children, and one experienced a great heart hurt. It has burdened my heart, and has helped to show me[because I need constant reminders] that I'm not the only one who is suffering. I'm not the only person who feels pain. We all do. Some of us can handle that pain and grief better than others. But it doesn't mean we don't all need to be comforted. And to know that someone cares about us and the condition of our hearts. Our hearts can hurt so greatly sometimes. And during those times it is hard to understand why we must endure the heartache. We ask why things have to happen. Why me? No one likes to have their heart hurt by the loss of someone, something, dreams, etc. Our country has seen a lot of heartache over the past 10 and a half years. We've faced the loss of thousands of innocent citizens as well as brave soldiers who have given their lives to fight for our safety. To fight for freedom. Over the past 7 or so years, we've seen numerous natural disasters that have claimed many more thousands of lives. Tsunamis, earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes. When will it end?

Here's where the hope comes into the picture. I'm not promising an instant cure for whatever pain that you may be facing, but it's the answer. The cure for the pain. The One who can make it better. I don't know where you[the reader(s) of my blog] are spiritually. You may call yourself spiritual or religious. You may not be spiritual at all. You may not believe that God exists. I'm here to tell you what I believe. What I know to be the Truth. And it's where my hope lies. Jesus Christ. The Author and Perfecter of our faith. (see Hebrews 12:2) Our Savior came into this world with a purpose. He came to live a perfect life. He came to love people, all people. He came to die for our sins, everyone's sin. He came to be a servant. He came to be a sacrifice. He came to bring Life. In Him, we can find true, eternal peace. With Him, we can do anything. That includes persevering through the trials of this life. It says in James 1:12 that "Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him." God's Word has promised us that "the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." While we are going through the hardships in our lives, He will never leave us. He understands our pain and sorrow. While Jesus was here on this earth He suffered. He suffered like every other human being suffers and has suffered on this earth. He felt pain, He felt loss. He suffered an agonizing death on the cross for our sakes. He gave up His life to pay the debt of our sins. He experienced the ultimate grief and pain so we could experience the greatest joy. The hope of life after death. A life where we will no longer feel any of the pain of this world. An eternity spent with our Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ. With this hope in mind, with the joy that we can know in Christ, with His strength--and only with His strength can we keep living, breathing, moving, dealing, enduring, persevering.

We have a great hope amidst life's pain. Through the years of suffering the loss of loved ones; dealing with economic hardships; losing jobs; broken hearts; cancer; debilitating illnesses; whatever it may be, He is always there. There's no need to go through this life with no hope. We have a great God who loves us. Who can help heal any hurt or brokenness. Psalms 34:18 says "The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit". I'd say that covers our pain. Broken hearts and crushed spirits. Like I said at the beginning of this post, life. is. hard. I've had a broken heart and crushed spirit. I'm still dealing with difficult things in my own life, but my Jesus has never left me. He is helping to heal the broken parts, and lifting up my spirit. I know it's not easy. And life is not going to get any easier. No need to sugar coat it and make false promises. But I can promise you this, if you let Him, God will heal your heart, and never leave you in your time of need. He will show you what true joy and peace are and He will give you the strength you need to endure the hardships of this life. For those of you who are reading this, and you know Jesus, hold fast to Him as you go through the trials of this life. For those of you who don't know Jesus, I encourage you to find out more about Him. I promise you, it will be well worth it.