Posts Tagged ‘value’

  

“Azor was the father of Zadok. Zadok was the father of Akim. Akim was the father of Eliud.” (Matthew‬ ‭1:14‬ ‭NLT‬‬)

Many, many years ago, a guy named Luigi da Porto wrote a story about a tragically fated romance. Later, Italian writer Matteo Bandello released a novella based on da Porto’s story. This version inspired Pierre Boaistuau to write a poem regarding tragic love. Then in line with these guys, Arthur Brooke published a narrative poem in the same line of thought but his would not be the last. For his poem, The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet, would later inspire one more guy who would render the final telling of the tale, which was none other than William Shakespeare and his dramatic production, Romeo and Juliet!

Most of the modern world has heard of Shakespeare and his classical story, but we seldom realize all the hands of inspiration that made it happen. The same is with the life of Jesus. The text from Matthew is but a clip from a rather boring bit of genealogy. Upon closer inspection, however, you realize that these guys were important because they were Jesus’ many-great grandfathers on Joseph’s side! While seemingly insignificant, their story is necessary so that a righteous and good man would marry a pregnant teenage girl and help raise the Savior of the world!

You and your life story matters! While seeming pale and paltry, your life enriches those around you. Allow God to use you to create greater love stories in the world! You are loved! 

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“Of all the people on earth, the LORD your God has chosen you to be his own special treasure.” (Deuteronomy‬ ‭7‬:‭6‬ NLT)

As I sat at the Burger King restaurant last night after church, I was privileged to be hanging out with some special friends, the ladies from Teen Challenge in Russellville, AR. I sat listening to their stories, where they came from, the addictions and past scars they are seeking to overcome, and the scriptures that they are standing on to accomplish it. To me, I was sitting amongst the bravest heroes I had ever met: Those that will truly fight their personal demons!

One of them shared this verse with me and it immediately struck my heart. How many of us sit in our regrets, stained by sin and failure, cultivating and perfecting the hatred we feel for ourselves to the point that we could NEVER see ourselves as treasurable? I would dare say that it would be all of us and probably occurs everyday. 

So here is a word of hope for today! You are truly a treasure to God! Don’t focus on the failed opinions of others or even yourself. Get to know God’s loving thoughts towards you and grow in that beautiful relationship! You are free to be loved today! 

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So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to God.” (1 Peter‬ ‭4‬:‭19‬ NLT)

As I was commuting down I-30 yesterday listening to the news on the radio, it was a veritable grocery list of human suffering: Ebola virus may be in Texas; ISIS terrorists still butchering people; bad winter coming; people still fighting in Ferguson, MO… It makes me want to grab a bag of chocolate donuts and lose myself in Netflix so I can forget about it! Who needs to suffer?!

The surprising answer is: You Do. Crises of faith serves to make us stronger, much more than warm fuzzy moments. In an article at christiancourier.com (read the whole article, The Value of Human Suffering), we see that one thing is certain: many who have passed through the crucible of suffering will acknowledge that they have found themselves infinitely better for the experience—bitter though it may have been. Robert Browning Hamilton memorialized it this way:

I walked a mile with Pleasure
She chatted all the way,
But left me none the wiser
For all she had to say.
I walked a mile with Sorrow
And ne’er a word said she;
But oh, the things I learned from her
When Sorrow walked with me!

If you are finding yourself stewing away in Life’s crockpot, it will strike you as strange to think that suffering could please God. God does NOT desire for you to hurt, but to grow. Because we rarely grow the simple way, we force ourselves into tight spots. Stop griping and start growing! You’ve made it this far, He’ll see you through to a better end! You are loved!