Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Generosity and The Kingdom of God!

This past Sunday night, Zeke had the privilege of preaching for the first time at our new church. As he was preparing, we were both praying that God would reveal to him, what he was to share with the body. The concepts of generosity and the Kingdom of God were ones that kept coming back and have been on our hearts. So Sunday night, Zeke shared a message on the Generous Kingdom - the thought that as believers, we use the resources God has given us to further His Kingdom. We are not just content to sit on what we have and watch as those around us suffer when we could help. That we are living with the knowledge that the things we have are the things (time, resources, etc.) that God has entrusted us with. But He has not simply entrusted us with these things so that we are blessed, but rather to be a blessing to others.
For me, understanding this has really and truly changed the way I look at the resources I have. Generosity is a way of life, not just a nice character trait.
So as Zeke was studying last week and I was finishing reading through 1Corinthians and moving into 2 Corinthians, these thoughts of generosity and a heart for the Kingdom of God have been in my mind and on my heart. I read a verse in 1 Corinthians that broke my heart...15:34 "Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame." Paul was writing to the Corinthians, but that verse applies to us just as much! Some have no knowledge of God - those words have been running through my head since I read them. No knowledge of the Grace that has been bestowed on the children of God, no knowledge of a God who forgives, no knowledge of a God who lavishes love on His children, no knowledge of Him at all! As I read that verse, these questions came to my mind..."Am I stirred into action as I read this verse? Knowing that there are those around me that have no knowledge of God? Does it break my heart for the many people around the world that have no knowledge of God - some of those in my own community?"
Then I went on in 2 Corinthians to read "But thanks be to God who always leads us in triumphal procession and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of Him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing," (2 Cor 2:14-15) Our lives give off the scent of Christ as we go through our daily routines. To some of those around us, the scent brings life, but others it is death.
As we go out and walk through life surrendered to the leading of the Holy Spirit of God in our lives, those around us notice. When we live surrendered to the Holy Spirit's movement in our lives, we are no longer a people gathering up the resources God has given us and keeping them to ourselves, but we are a people willingly offering the resources we have to make a difference in the lives of those around us!

This is a song that really challenges me and encourages me in this area, so I will end with it! :)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Update :)

Wow, so it has been too long since I have blogged! Honestly, there just has not been time! So that means I have a lot to catch up on. Here we go...
In February, Zeke was offered and accepted a position as the Minister of Worship and Students at First Baptist Church Carthage. We are so excited about this opportunity! :) So for the last few weeks we have been traveling back and forth between Shelbyville and Carthage, and will continue to do so until the school year is over (May 27th - not that I have that date memorized or anything!).
Along with the excitement of moving comes the excitement of purchasing our first home! We are super excited about that! I have bee out running around Carthage today getting all the utilities set! We get the keys this Saturday! Here is a picture of our new house! :) I will post some of the inside later!
We are looking forward to all that God is going to do in and through our lives during this time, and all that He is going to do in the lives of those in Carthage, Smith County, Tennessee, and ultimately around the world as FBC Carthage follows after Him! :)
I am still teaching first grade, but on Spring Break this week - yay! :) I am really enjoying my time with these students! Here is a funny story I have to share with you about my little first graders: The other week, they were all excited to tell me about their Easter plans. So I heard stories about egg hunts and family dinners, and one little boy told me that He was getting baptized on Easter. One of the other students heard him and asked "What's that - Baptized?" Before I could answer, another student, who in the past has presented some interesting views about church tells the one who asked "It's when you get saved and the Holy Ghost comes all up in you." to which the one asking the question responds "Oh, my momma got that. There's no ghost!" I was trying my best not to laugh at that moment, but inside I was laughing so hard! I am definitely going to miss my time with these precious first graders! :)
I am going to post again in a little while, but that is all for now! :)