Can’t Get No Satisfaction

“Look at what’s happening to you! You have planted much but harvested little. You eat but are not satisfied. You drink but are still thirsty. You put on clothes but can’t stay warm.” -Haggai 1:5-6

I read this verse the other night and I thought of how much this verse still relates to the culture of today. The people being talked about in this passage couldn’t get satisfaction in anything that they did, they always wanted more. Things aren’t much different now than they were back in the B.C. times when this was written. We all have so much stuff but we “can’t get no satisfaction.”

If you are reading this post online you are in the top 10% of the world population. We are so privileged to have what we have yet we want more. We need to be able to find satisfaction in what we have. The culture around us tells us that we need to get ahead of everyone else and we need to have the newest and coolest things. What needs to happen is we need to stop, take a breath and enjoy the simpler things and be satisfied with it.

Think about all the things that we have that other people all over the world don’t have. That list is very long and we should be satisfied with it. I believe that the best way to improve your way of life is to be okay with be satisfied where you are. Be happy with what you have and finally you’ll be able to say, “I CAN get some satisfaction.”

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Christian Marketing

The other week I rode past a billboard off the side of the highway, the only thing it said was, in big letters, HELL is REAL. I want to know from the people who put up that sign what their goal for having that sign is. To me it seems like it is for everyone to see yet it does nothing for anyone. It’s not encouraging, its not uplifting, all it is doing is using scare tactics to try to change people and I find it hard to see it changing anyone. The sign says nothing good, it only uses the darkness part of Christianity. It doesn’t say anything about the forgiveness and all the things that Jesus promised us or all the great things about it. All the sign is doing is using fear to try to change people.

I’m not saying that Hell isn’t real but I am asking, why would be put on a billboard? It’s a marketing scheme for Christianity but when you have such a great “product” why would you have to scare people into “buying” it.? In this case Christianity needs to be like McDonald’s, they don’t market the high calories and fat and how unhealthy most of the food is but if you ask about it they don’t deny it. The high calories are the worst part about the food so they market the good aspects like the taste. Hell is like the fat and calories, it’s there and shouldn’t be denied but it shouldn’t be marketed. It’s not something that draws people to Christianity but it is something that is part of it so it shouldn’t be thrown to the side like it’s not there but it shouldn’t be marketed.

Why doesn’t that sign say Heaven is Real? That would make more sense to me. It shows the best part of Christianity and it is still dealing with the same subject of what happens after death. It is encouraging and instead of using fear its offering a reward. It’s shows the promise that Jesus gave us in John 3:16, “whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” There are commercials and ads all the time about rewards for joining something or for buying something so why wouldn’t the rewards of Christianity be marketed? This reward is so much better than all of the other rewards in all of the world combined so we should tell everyone about that.

Be Our Solution

“Don’t worry about anything instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need, thank him for all he has done.” -Philippians 4:6

I was searching youtube the other day for worship videos and I came across the song “Solution” by Hillsong. It is a great song just like many others from Hillsong. After listening to that song I read that verse in my bible and I made the connection between the two and realized that they both have the same general message. The song is asking God to be the solution and the verse is telling us to pray to God asking him to be that solution. When things get tough it is always good to turn to God and pray to him to ask him to help us. 1 Thessalonians 5-17 says, “Never stop praying” and really it is that simple. Just don’t stop praying, whatever you’re doing you can just say a prayer to him about something. That is one thing that I usually come up short on.  I usually pray when I’m relaxed at home but I rarely do it whenever I’m doing something. God will listen to our prayers at anytime no matter what we’re doing and when we pray to him he can help us. We need a solution so let’s ask, “God, be our solution”.

We Need Each Other

Last night I went to the men’s group for Center Pointe Church. We played some football where I had two defensive TD’s and one reception TD. After football we ate some hot wings and had a good conversation about the message that was delivered on Sunday. We talked about the Good Samaritan and one thing that came up many times is if God prompted someone to do something for someone else, people would do things to help others up until the point of them risking their own safety or the safety of their family. I thought that was a good thing because you don’t want to hurt yourself by helping them but once I thought about it more I realized that is not what we should do. If God has prompted us we should do it even if we think that it is risky because he will be with us and aid us through whatever he has prompted us to do. We use risk as an excuse to try to justify to ourselves why we didn’t help that person.

I believe that when God calls us to do something we need to listen and not worry about the risks that there may be. Jesus took risks all the time, he healed people with all different kinds of diseases and many of them where probably contagious. He said things that offended many people and he hung out with criminals and some pretty bad people. All of those things are risky but Jesus knew that God was with him and would aid him. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, they are plans for good and not for disaster.” When God calls us to do something for someone we should do it and disregard the thoughts of risk that make us hesitate and not do it because God will be with us.

We need to help each other. We all have times when we need help from someone and we would want someone to help us. Use the Golden Rule and do to them what you would want them to do to you. It may be someone that you see on the side of the road that ran out of gas or maybe it is someone that you know has been struggling with something and they just need someone to talk to. Whatever it is we should help them with their needs. We need to learn to love everyone no matter what they look like, what they have done or whatever. The only way that this world becomes a better place is if we all start to care more about the people in it.

Why Do We Serve?

Last night I went to go help a family move into their new house. On our way to their house we saw someone who had her car die in the middle of the road. We decided to help and push the car to the gas station that was across the street. We got the car into the gas station parking lot and out of the road. After we did that we continued on the way to help the family move in. The house that we were helping to move into had no electricity yet so we were moving in with only flashlights to see where we were going. The house had three floors with narrow hallways which also made it tricky to move stuff in. It took us a while to get all the stuff out of the truck and and into the house and it took a lot of energy but we were able to get it done.

On our way home even though I was very tired it still felt good to have served someone. Then I started thinking, why does it feel good to do something that takes a lot out of you for someone? The answer that I have for that question comes from Matthew 26:35-40 where Jesus is talking to some people about serving.

“For when I was hungry you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.” The people then asked when they did that for Jesus and he replied, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”

The reason that we feel so good about doing something for other people in need is because when we serve them, we are serving Jesus. We know that we put a lot of hard work and energy into something but it was not only for the people that we served but it was also for Jesus. Jesus gave his life for us, he gave the ultimate service by dying for our sins so we should thank him by serving him back and when we serve others we serve him.

The Cost In Life

“Why does he not snuff me out, For I don’t know what life’s about, the debt I owe for sin is high, Still he lets me live love work and die.” – Johnny Cash from his poem The Cost in Life

I have been reading the book “The Man Called Cash”, a biography about Johnny Cash and this poem was in it. I really like this poem because it shows God’s love and forgiveness. At the time that Cash wrote this poem he was struggling with an amphetamine addiction and he was having an affair. He knew that the things he was doing was wrong. Cash had strayed from God and eventually he came back to God and had faith again. With that he was able to beat his addiction and stopped having the affairs. He knew that God had the power to “snuff” him out but God didn’t. God gave Cash forgiveness and he was able to change his life.

God will forgive anyone no matter what they have done just like he did to Cash. It doesn’t matter what sins you have committed, God will accept you and forgive you if you ask for it. If you believe in God he will forgive you and you won’t have to pay the debt that you owe for sin because he will wipe away the sin. “Though your sins are like scarlet [God] will make them white as snow” (Isaiah 1:18). Jesus paid our cost in life. No matter what we have done, no matter how high the cost of the sins that we have committed because of Jesus our debt is paid in full.

Nehemiah Point 3

“For the dedication of the new wall of Jerusalem, the Levites throughout the land were asked to come to Jerusalem to assist in the ceremonies. They were to take part in the joyous occasions with their songs of thanksgiving and with the music of the cymbals, harps and lyres.” -Nehemiah 12:27

Nehemiah was able to get the wall finished and he only had one more thing to do. He wanted to celebrate the accomplishment and give God thanks for providing for them so they could get the wall built. Many times we get things done and we don’t celebrate, instead we move on to the next thing. It is important to celebrate because it gives everyone that helped to get the job done a sense of accomplishment. Nehemiah knew that many people put a lot of work in to rebuilding the wall and he wanted to acknowledge them for putting in so much effort and he wanted them to feel good about what they did.

Celebrating an accomplishment is important to having a successful team that enjoy what they’re doing. It gives people that sense of accomplishment they want. People like being told that they did something well and when something good is done we should thank them for doing it and tell them that they did a good job. We need to celebrate the things that we accomplish. Nehemiah knew that it was good to celebrate when something was completed so he had a party because the wall was finished. We need to celebrate the things that we do and give God thanks that he provided for us so that we could get the job done.