Monday, April 24, 2017

Tears for the Hurting

There are so many of my friends, family and spiritual family who are hurting right now and as I type this article, tears are filling my eyes because I don't know what I can do to help them all. I am saddened that we hurt from situations in our lives and it pains me to know that the answers I have will not work unless I rely on others to do be the kind of Christians that they should and that I too have a responsibility to be what I need to be as well.

 God has expressed his desire in the statement found in Matthew 22:36-40.

 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law? 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

We walk through life wondering if anyone really loves us the way that they should when we face the trials that wreck havoc to our lives. We know the hurt we feel and wonder why others are not there to help us, or stand up for us, or even let us know that they are hurting as well. We cry with tears that never make it to our eyes because it may be our fault others don't care for us in the way we think that they should.
To those that are hurting today or tomorrow know that I am sorry if you ever feel like no one cares, or seems to care. I am sorry if I have ever left you feeling like this. I know that we get so wrapped up in things that take us away from other things we probably need to be doing, and it is difficult to make some of those decisions as we walk through our lives. However, we do need to stop and engage our hearts with our minds and make sure we are truly taking care of the things that are important, the hearts of our family and friends who are hurting. 
God bless us as we strive to be the people He wants us to be.
This is my suggestion. Sit down and at least think for a moment or two, "What is important for me to do for others today? What should I do to be as involved in the lives of my family's spiritual nature? How can I serve my Christian family today in a way that they need?"
I pray that if you are hurting today that you know God is there. If you need help or ever feel like others aren't meeting your needs like you believe that they should, you are right. Do not feel bad for expressing your needs for comfort, love, and concern. Sometimes we just need to be bold enough to ask for prayers and also bold enough to encourage others to focus on what others needs are. Don't be afraid to be held accountable and also to hold others accountable to be the family we need to be.
I love you all so much. I am sorry if there has been anyone that feels like I have slighted them in any way. Remember, forgiveness is never demanded but requested and love is given never forced. Let us love one another the way that will make God proud. Start today! Love God and love others!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Leaving the Past Behind

How many of you look back and say, "I can't believe I did that back when I was a teen, or young adult"? I do. Every day! That is until I stop and remember that when I was young I had yet to take responsibility for my actions. As I grew older and more mature I have realized that many of the things I did I forgot to stop and think through the situations to see the possible results. I still do that on occasion, but not as often as I did in the past.
As we become God's children and are forgiven by God it includes everything we have ever done in the past. (Wow, what a relief) However, it doesn't change the way people in our past may see us. I believe that if we give ourselves time and have opportunity to live a life that says, "I want to apologize for what I have done in the past." That is what we do when we become God's children. We ask forgiveness from the God we have hurt with our actions.
If we are Christians and do something that hurts others in our lives or those who may see us fail as Christians, we need to realize we can not undo an action or un-speak a word.
What we can do is ask forgiveness and when given the opportunity to say "I'm sorry", take it. Say it! "I'm sorry for what I have done in the past to you."
It is not difficult, it is just a decision. Just ask forgiveness when you realize that you messed up. Then, realize and believe that God has forgiven you. Let evil know you aren't going to be held in its grasp.
God bless you through your walk!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

REALLY?

Question...can a person believe in abortion, the killing of innocent unborn children, and be a Christian?
mur·der
ˈmərdər/
noun
  1. 1.
    the unlawful premeditated killing of one human being by another.
    "the stabbing murder of an off-Broadway producer"
verb
  1. 1.
    kill (someone) unlawfully and with premeditation.
    "somebody tried to murder Joe"
    synonyms:kill, put to death, assassinateexecuteliquidateeliminatedispatchbutcherslaughtermassacre, wipe out;

Google definition!

If murder is taking the life of someone either by killing, homicide, assassination, liquidation, extermination, execution, slaughter or to eliminate, dispatch, butcher etc. I guess the government and society can allow, through law, for a woman to legally do so because of amendments add to our constitution.

However, no Christian can through God's word ever advocate, support, or uphold the rights of anyone to kill.

Just know I can't stand nor will I stand with those who claim it is a right to kill an unborn child.

I love you all, but Christians need to stand against sin and abortion and the right to abort may be legal to our nation but is an abomination before God.

Britt

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

One of My Heroes

Yes, I had a real live hero when I was in fourth grade. 

It was the second day of school and the second day of riding the school bus at the beginning of fourth grade. We had moved over the summer into a three bedroom home on Valentine Ln. in Longview, TX. We were still attending the same school and although we had only moved about two miles down the road from our previous residence the bus riders were a completely different group of students.

When I got on the bus that morning there were only about ten other riders and we added to that number by three. I made my way toward the middle of the bus when I saw it. It was a helmet. A football helmet with a gold Pirate on both sides. "What is he doing with that football helmet?" I asked myself.

My curiosity rose and I moved deeper into the bus to find that not only did he have a helmet but a bag with a complete practice uniform and all the pads and shoes with it. He even had a mouth guard. That was new to me.

I sat in the empty seat in front of this guy with this amazing helmet and uniform. I asked him, "Are you a football player?

"Yeah, I play on the B Team" he said. (Junior Varsity so as not to belittle our youth today).

I didn't care what team he played on. His name was Louis and he was a football player for my school. That made him one of my heroes and he lived just a block away from my family home on Valentine Ln.

I was overjoyed when I got home that afternoon. When dad pulled into the driveway I ran out to meet him with the news. "Dad, I met a real football player. His name is Louis, can we go watch him play?"

Dad gave me a hug and said "We just might!"

We did go to a game on that Thursday. Louis didn't play. He stood on the sidelines and held that beautiful helmet in his hand and watched the game. I think he may have been in the game after we left, probably at half time I would imagine because of school the next day for me.

There are so many young people today who are looking for heroes in their lives who are not necessarily their parents or family members. They are looking for someone to be an example of what they would like to become.

For me, it was a young man with a helmet and uniform. Someone who may not have had a starting position on the team but was still on the team. He was a hero to someone and that someone was me.

There are young people needing good examples of Christian Youth set before them. Are you, even if you are a parent or grandparent, encouraging young people to be representatives of Christ? Are you carrying the uniform that, when seen, brings immediate recognition that represents a belief system that Jesus has inspired. Are you a part of the team or are you sitting in the stands, watching, never participating? Are you looking for team mates or are you sitting back being critical of those who are on the team but are not starters or important parts of the team. Those who are in uniform on the sidelines are a part of the team and are very important to the completeness of the team.

Where are you? Are you carrying the full armor of God? Someone is in need of encouragement seeing others wearing that armor. Pick it up and put it on and be the example of God. Be a part of the team!

I'll see you later!

Ephesians 6:10-18New International Version (NIV)

The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.



Thursday, August 11, 2016

A Cheerful Heart!

Proverbs 17:22 says, “A Cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.” (NLT)
I don’t know about you but I would much rather be around a person with a cheerful heart than to suffer through another agonizing scenario with a person who doesn’t realize how good they have it in their lives. So many times, as a minister, I have dealt with people who are on their last straw and they feel like they just can’t survive another day in their lives. They just don’t know what to do. They worry, they try to find happiness, they try to over compensate for past mistakes by never allowing themselves to stop and look around them.
I pray with them or for them that they find a peace that abides inside of themselves that they have yet to tap into. It is a spiritual thing that many don’t realize is truly there for them. God wants us, not to be happy, but joyful. Realizing what we have in our church family, our spiritual hub of our Christian existence, is one of the most joyful experiences that we will ever have or be a part of. It just takes us making our minds up when we wake each morning that today is going to be a day that I praise God no matter what Satan and his minions throw at me.
I hope you find that blessing of joy each morning as you open your eyes from your slumber and thank God you are here and able to be included in His family!

God bless us all here at West Freeway, or wherever we find ourselves in our Christian walk. 

I'll see you later!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Ya Can't Roller Skate in a Buffalo Herd!

I have always been told “Ya can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd…Ya can’t take a shower in a parakeet cage…Ya can’t go a-swimmin’ in a baseball pool…Ya can’t change film with a kid on your back…Ya can’t drive around with a tiger in your car…Ya can’t go fishin’ in a watermelon patch…” No, ya can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd, but you can be happy if you’ve a mind to.”
            Roger Miller wrote and sang those words back when I was a kid, but the word picture it painted in my mind was how absurd the song was. Everyone knows that all of what he sang was silly, but I forgot to look at the actual meaning the song was trying to push forward. I was only six when he debuted his album The Return of Roger Miller. So it was a long time ago. The visions that came through my mind were comical and I loved the tune.
            Being a young child I concentrated on the words I liked and didn’t listen to the rest of them with as much interest. A couple of days ago the song popped in my mind as I was working in my office.  I got to thinking about the rest of the song but I couldn’t remember. Thank goodness for Google I found the words with the most meaning. Yes, the tune always sparked my interest but I couldn’t remember all the words and had to look them up.
Like many who read the Bible, I had heard it enough to remember a part of it but not enough to get the real meaning of the words. See, the chorus and bridge of the song goes like this. “All ya gotta do is put your mind to it, knuckle down, buckle down, do it, do it, do it. No, ya can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd, but you can be happy if you’ve a mind to.”
No, you can’t roller skate in a buffalo herd or any of the other things that Roger sings about here. But, we can all smile and be happy if we put our minds to it!  We can read and learn the rest of the bible to find out what God wants for us in our lives.

How are you doing? I love you all!  Britt

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

How Public?

I wish I didn't feel that I need to blog about this, but here goes.

I was asked a question about repentance and how public it needs to be for the Christian. Others in our world have to answer to their own moral convictions.

I am going to share here what I believe the Bible, the word of God, teaches us to do. In other words the person was asking that if they sinned, as a child of God, how public should the repentance be concerning that sin?

Let me answer by giving an example.

When a person sins in a way that only one or two people knew about it, he or she needs to apologize for the wrong they committed and repent of the sin to God and those people. It could possibly be a situation in your family where you just need to talk to them and ask their forgiveness. That would suffice according to what I read (see the scriptures listed below).

If a person does something that is widely known, a public sin, and a vast majority of the church family is aware or the public is aware of, they need to ask the entire church for forgiveness. That means that they need to acknowledge their sin before the church, ask the church for their forgiveness, repent of that sin to be in a right relationship with the church and God.

Examples of that would or could be considered: an arrest for wrongs committed against the law of the land, loss of temper in public forum, sexual misconduct or sex outside of marriage, public drunkenness, DUI or DWI, drug abuse, manipulating the feelings of people to gain an advantage and getting caught...and I could go on and on. With these sins there should be, from what I understand, public apology given, repentance and forgiveness sought.

My rule of thumb when people come to me and want to make their faults right with God and the church my statement is this..."Repentance and confession of sin needs to only be as public as the sin was itself."

It is hard to hide somethings. There are somethings that are not public knowledge but some are so public it causes the church to be hurt and the name of Christ to be maligned.  That is what we need to avoid at all costs. Sin kills the spirit if it is left unaccounted for.

If you have sinned and the church knows about it, it doesn't matter if people talking about it (gossip) is how it got around, you still sinned and need to repent before God and the church. If you gossiped about someone else's sin, you too need to repent before God and the church.

Don't let the consequences of your sin kill your spirit. Hell isn't worth it!

Matthew 18:15-17
15 “If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16 But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’ 17 If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

I'll see you later!