Faith for the Real World

One of my favorite things to do is watch campy b-movies (in case you couldn’t already tell with the title of this blog already!). It always makes me laugh, especially while watching with friends. While having dinner with a few of my old roommates we were joking around about this movie that we had kept seeing clips from, some direct to video stuff. The movie’s premise was showing the dangers of playing dungeons and dragons, and in it you see a comical caricature of Christians. The movie looks ridiculous, but that got me thinking (not about the danger of D&D, because it’s just a game, silly), but it got me thinking about what a real world faith truly looks like. You see, there are so many misconceptions of what having a relationship with God is truly like, and many people are turned off by some of the types of people that claim to have a relationship. A relationship with Christ is one of the most incredible and real things. What that means is that you have acknowledged that you’re a sinner, which creates a disconnect from God, but God sent his son to bridge that gap. His death and resurrection allows us to enter into a relationship with him, it is a relationship that is real and raw. A relationship with Christ isn’t some legalistic or holier-than-thou type of thing, it is an authentic walk with Christ.

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You Make the Difference

Vulnerability moment: Sometimes I don’t feel like I’m making an impact. I love serving and do it each week because I love speaking life into others, but there are moments where I wonder if any of what I do means anything to anyone. I know that this isn’t true, when we serve others we make the difference, but it isn’t always easy to feel that way. I think the same is true for you. In your job, in your home, at the church where you volunteer; you have a hard time believing that people actually see the difference you make and the skills you bring to the table. We can feel unnoticed, wanting to be given a thank you or a simple thought from someone confirming that you do matter, but we don’t always get that. Now before I go any further, I want to make it clear that this isn’t a post for me trying to get anything from, I simply am trying to be vulnerable because I think we get into places where we feel this way. We have an active enemy that is trying to twist your thoughts to make you feel worthless, powerless, and alone. I want to help you win at life because you have a creator that says you are worth it. Your life has value. You make the difference.

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There is something I have noticed in the bible. Over the past year I have been reading the works of Paul and focusing in on the wisdom that he had when it comes to a relationship with Christ. He is such a powerful writer, his letters went to each place where he addressed key aspects of their life that they needed to re-order. Each book is a letter, which caused me to stop and think, I love writing (I mean, why else would I do this each week!) and often I will analyze how another writer works because I want to grow my skills. My brain started thinking about Paul, and there is something that he does in each letter, each book that he authored in the bible, which have one common device. In each letter, he opens with a personal greeting to each of the churches, and ends with a final charge for that church. The content is different, but the opening and closing are always intentionally the same. He personally calls out to each church and ends with a prayer over them and gives them credit for the work that they are doing and continue to do. You see, I think Paul knew something very important, something that we as leaders in our communities need to understand and realize, the pieces make up the puzzle.

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