Monthly Archives: October 2013

Jesus Reigns

We talked about last week about the fact that through Christ’s sacrifice for us – His redeeming blood – we have been not only been freed from our slavery to sin, but we have been brought into the family of God. (Col 1:12-14) Imagine once again –  a prisoner of war, sold into slavery, put up at auction, then bought by the heir to the throne of a kingdom.  You think automatically that you are at the very least going to be put to work in this kingdom, but instead, the son brings you to the castle, takes you before the king, and says to him, “Father, I have paid this persons’ debts. They were in slavery but now they are free.  I now would like for you to accept them as your son/daughter.” Talk about going the extra mile.  You would think it was enough to just set you free.  How awesome is that?  And that is exactly what Christ has done for us.  Once we recognize our sin state, and accept Christ’s free gift of grace, we are made co-heirs with Christ (Romans 8:16-17).

Becoming part of a new family will change you – marrying into a family for example.  The family you marry into will impact who you are even if you don’t realize it.  Sometimes it may be something as simple as trying new foods that you never thought you would, or it could be something much bigger.  Me, for example.  I never thought that I would really ever shoot a gun, much less actually like it. (Now, I’m actually decent at it.) My family was  never that much into guns, but my husband’s family is.  Over the years being a part of their family I’ve learned about gun safety, how to stand, how to hold a gun, how to aim and shoot, and more recently Selby has taught me how to clean a gun properly.  Becoming part of the family of God SHOULD affect you.  “ Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”(2 Cor 5:17).  The Apostle Paul points out in many different places how becoming a Christian should affect our behavior.  One example is Colossians 3:12-17 “ So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. 14 Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. 15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”

Letting Christ rule in our hearts is the pathway to allowing Him to reign in our lives.  Will you “let the word of Christ richly dwell within you”?  This is key to the right person being the supreme authority (King) of your life.  Hint: that’s not you.

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Long Pool Hike

The water fall wasn’t running very well today, but the weather was perfect for hiking.  Some trees are showing color as well.  Click on any of the pictures to see more photos from the hike.

Long Pool Fall – there wasn’t much water running, so the fall is a bit anemic.

Good conversation – enjoying the scenery

Large boulders in Big Piney Creek at the Long Pool campground



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Jesus Redeems


1. To recover ownership of by paying a specified sum.
2. To pay off (a promissory note, for example).
3. To turn in (coupons, for example) and receive something in exchange.
4. To fulfill (a pledge, for example).
5. To set free; rescue or ransom.
6. To save from a state of sinfulness and its consequences.
7. To make up for
8. To restore the honor, worth, or reputation of
I think it is safe to say that Jesus did all these things with His blood on the cross.  He bought back what He and the Father created by His sacrifice – we were “bought with a price” (1 Cor. 6:20).  Christ’s  substitutionary atonement fulfills the Old Testament Law’s demands more than a lamb ever could – He is OUR substitute Lamb.  He sets us free – buying us out of our slavery of sin, not with silver or gold, but with His precious blood and spotless, sinless life.  If we recognize our sad sinful state and accept His sacrifice to overtake our lives, He delivers us from that way of life and its ultimate consequence (Rom. 6:23).    His blood covers our imperfections, our blemishes… our spots.  His redemption brings us near to the Father, brings us into the Family as adopted sons and daughters.  His work on the cross allows us to also offer a sacrifice –  a living one – “Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Rom. 12:1-2.
I don’t really know that I think about what redemption means enough.  I even admit that I get very emotional when I think about it on a deeper level.  I know that I know what it means to BE redeemed (do you?), but sometimes I forget the part about what we are redeemed FOR.  Christ didn’t pay the ultimate price for us to simply sit around and be forgiven.  If I cost that much – if you cost that much, shouldn’t we want to do more?  Not because we are required to pay it back, because we NEVER would be able to even if we tried – that’s not how it works.  I am simply saying that we should do our best to be transformed and not conformed because it is an act of worship.  We should do this because by being different from the world and by telling the world why, there might just be a few more people in our lives that benefit from being bought back by the redeeming grace of Jesus Christ our Lord.
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Jesus Reconciles

Colossians 1:21 Once you were alienated and hostile in your minds because of your evil actions. 22 But now He has reconciled you by His physical body through His death, to present you holy, faultless, and blameless before Him—
I don’t know about you, but I haven’t often felt alienated – alone maybe, but alienated is such a strong word. I do, however, remember that distinct scary feeling of separation when as a child you look up in Wal-Mart and realize that your Mom or your Dad is no longer standing right beside you. Whether it was because you wandered away or you failed to keep up, you realize that you are separated from the one person that can get you home. You frantically search the aisles crying out “Mommy, Daddy!” and feel that you may never find them on your own. Then, out of the kindness of their heart, or maybe just in the pursuit to get you to stop crying, someone delivers you to the arms of your parent who has been searching for you, waiting, aching for you to come back to them. The last thing on their mind is that you wandered away, their only concern is that you are safe and that you are back where you are loved. This is what Christ does with His blood. Once we accept Him and His help – He delivers us back into the arms of the Father who has been waiting for us to come back to Him. Now in His arms, we also have a responsibility – 2 Corinthians 5:18 Everything is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: We also need to share our story with others so they might know Him – wouldn’t you like to be involved in holding someone’s hand and leading them to the arms of a Father who has so long been waiting for them?

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Jesus Reflects

For the last several weeks, we have been talking about the things for what we have been created. Now, we turn our eyes to Jesus, the perfect example of how we should strive to live our lives. How He reflects God’s nature, His glory, His mission. Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities–all things have been created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
“Who is Jesus? He is God Himself made visible to all. Praise God! You and I are not condemned to live in the darkness, because He has turned on the Light! Praise God for just giving us Jesus!” Anne Graham Lotz
Have you been thankful for Jesus lately?

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