Tag Archives: being a christian

Why You Salty? Have You Counted the Cost of Commitment to Jesus? Are You Willing and Able? What Cost Are You Counting?

Why You Salty JoaynnBoy, I tell you when you go to God and tell him all your troubles he is listening and will help you, if you let him. How do I know? Because yesterday I was on the brink of giving up, hanging by the thread on a “do me wrong” cliff and told God I no longer wanted to be a Christian. He laughed at me and said, “My dear child I understand but that will not change who I am.”

I cried out to God like I had never before because I was desperate and needed him. This morning he answered my prayers immediately. Forgive me for the long post. Can you relate?

For reasons I can never explain, I woke this morning with an instinct to read my Bible unlike months before when I didn’t have no desire whatsoever to read the word of God and He took me to the Book of Luke, chapter 14. So many answers to my questions were made available and God gave me a revelation! I finally figured out why I am having so much trouble in my spiritual walk and not understanding what it means to be a Christian.

While reading the Book of Luke chapter 14 I saw this question in the notes, “How salty are you?” and I asked myself, “Joy, why are you salty?” “Did you count the cost of commitment to Jesus?” No, I never did. I gave my life to him and never questioned the cost of what it took to be a follower of Christ.

“How salty are you?” My answer will astound you. I am salty but not in the way you would expect. I have been frustrated, mad, and irritated with myself and with God because it didn’t feel like he was with me while going through what felt like too many trials. I took my frustrations out on myself and starting looking at my past mistakes that are gone and I can do nothing about. I started having a pity party all by myself and wanted someone, anyone to feel sorry for me. Yesterday, I realized this was and will not work for me.

What do you know about salt? Well, salt loses its flavor when it becomes wet and then dries, leaving a tasteless residue. Much like us. When we blend in with the world and are in the world and not of it, we lose our saltiness and become worthless. This was me. For months I started losing myself in the process focusing on the wrong things and not the right things of God and couldn’t figure out why. I was miserable.

See, for months I have been in a downward spiral of emotions and feelings about life, the loss of my mother, and being a Christian. I found myself daily telling God, “I don’t want to be a Christian anymore because it’s too hard.” I chose to settle to average. I wasn’t willing to plan, sacrifice, and keep my commitment to Christ’s kingdom. I failed God daily in representing Christ in the world. I kept looking at why all the wrong things were happening in my life. I took my focus off God and started looking at my circumstances, heavily. While I know Jesus paid the price, I never looked at the cost of living my life as a believer.

Have you ever never counted the cost of your commitment to Christ? I have. I never counted the cost of what it takes to be a Christian. I just became one. I never counted the cost of what it takes to live a Christian life. I failed miserably at living one. I never counted the cost of what it takes to run a business. I had an idea and ran with it never estimating the cost to successfully run a business. I never counted the cost of what it takes to publish a book. I just wrote what took twelve years to publish but never imagine the cost, people, and things I would lose in the process. I never counted the cost of what it takes to suffer the consequences of my decisions. Simply put, I NEVER COUNTED THE COST of my life as a Christian!

God never said we would not have trouble. He said he would be with us and never leave us when we have trouble. It cost to be a follower of Christ. It will not be trouble-free. You are going to lose some things; friends, family, and material possessions. I lost all of these. Friends left me. I lost all my possessions and some family too. I met with disappointment. I survived it.

You may lose your social status, your financial standing or wealth. Lost that too. The people I thought would support my dreams didn’t and the ones I thought mattered failed me. You will have to give up control of some things; your time, your money, or your career. Gave that up too. Lost my job, my health was affected, and my money has been funny ever since. All for the cost of my commitment to Jesus.
Anything we do in life comes with a price, at a cost. But must we never forget, Jesus paid a hefty price when he gave his life and died on the cross for us that we may have eternal life. Now ain’t that love!!

Be blessed! – JD

Matthew 5:13-15 “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet. 14 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.” (ESV)

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The Minute You Become a Christian, Act Like One. Don’t Be So Religious Only to Fail at Being Religious Because You Lack Being Spiritual

wpid-img_20150311_085818.jpgI’m just a messenger. When God speaks, I listen. I would rather do what God says and have him be pleased at me than to do what others say and have them be mad at me.

God does not decide on or pick a particular person to hear a word from him. His word is for anybody who will listen. God has a strange way of revealing something he needs you to know. Because after all, we can never understand why God does what he do or how he does it. His word shall go forth.

God uses unsuspecting vessels to send a message. Listen for that small voice when He says something. When we have to think or ask, “Was that about me?” The answer should be “No. But if it touched you in any way maybe it was for you.”

Every day we can expect a visitation from God. When he comes we have to have our house in order. When your house is not in order with God, neither are you. No matter how right you are in all that you do, your wrong becomes your right because you are choosing to just be you. Just because you may have weathered the storm doesn’t mean you did based on your own merit. But God may have sent the storm to bring something to your attention that he may get the glory out of it.

Yes, God blesses us at all times. Yet when we choose to not grow when the storm is over, we miss the more that God has for us. His word says he wants to bless us and bless us more abundantly but he wants us to be obedient. It’s not that he can’t do it but it’s because we won’t let him. Don’t be so religious only to fail at being religious because you lack being spiritual. Change your mindset.

It’s one thing to say you’re a Christian and another when your heart is not right with God. God gave us breath. We can’t make ourselves breathe. Just because you are a religious person, being religious doesn’t make you a Christian. Being religious is when we choose to live a life that honors our relationship with God. We rely on His wisdom. We allow his will, and not ours, be done. We are intimately connected to God and our spirit longs for a deeper relationship with Him. We choose to live to please God and not ourselves.

No matter how well we look on the outside, we have many reasons to deny what’s on the inside of our hearts. Actions speak louder than words. Be careful not to let your actions become idols as a result of your rituals. When you say “I’m a Christian” but don’t act like one, you are merely saying to God, I will act like a Christian sometimes but I won’t be a Christian all the time. I will choose when to act like one.”

Yes we can go to church regularly, we can say our prayers night, day, and all through the day, and we can even worship and praise God with our mouths thanking him for everything. All that is good but…when you choose not to commit to an intimate relationship with God and devote your life to his way of life, you make the mistake of living in vain because you are slowing dying a spiritual death when you choose to live without his intervention.

You are a sinner. You are dead to sin. Through faith in Christ, you can be saved and made whole again. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith–and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God–not by works, so that no can boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). You are spiritually renewed. Admit you need God’s intervention. When you are saved you are born again. The minute you become a Christian, act like one.

Isaiah 29:13 tells us, The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Their worship of me is made up only of rules taught by men.” We can know a lot about God but not know God personally. “When we claim to honor God while our hearts are far from him, our worship means nothing. It is not enough to study about religion or even to study the Bible. It is not enough to act religious. Our actions and our attitudes must be sincere. If they are not, Isaiah’s words also describe us (Matthew 15:8, 9).

There’s a saying “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” When I was a kid I used to believe this when people and even those I considered family would pick on me or call me names that would hurt my feelings. As I grew older I found some truth in this but believed in my heart that words can hurt more than sticks and stones and should never be the reason why we consciously inflict pain onto others by saying things that are mean, hurtful or not true.

Our decisions, actions, and way of thinking should reflect God’s character so that when people see us they may see Christ in us. And not see in us who we choose to be when people see us. Refusal to see the error in your ways does not excuse the behavior. In fact it only exacerbates it. How many times do you need to know that God is the great I AM THAT I AM? He, not you, will get the glory out of it.

Take a personal inventory of your life and check to see if something is missing on the inside. Is there a void? Is there a hole in your heart that you cannot fill? Do you believe something inside your heart is missing? As sincere as your religion may be, it is not enough to meet the needs of your heart or fill what is missing. Admit to yourself, I need God’s intervention. Go to God. Seek him. Say to him, I cannot do this thing called life by myself. Lord I need your help. God can fill the void. Change the error of your ways. Live a life pleasing to God. Live out the Fruit of the Spirit. God will be pleased.

When you feel the need for God’s intervention in your life, it is then and only then you come to understand your need of God. The moment you are born again, your sins are forgiven and you have a relationship with God. You are spiritually renewed. Old things pass away. A spiritual transformation takes place. You are a new creature in Christ. You are no longer who you used to be. Be the person God created you to be. I pray this blesses someone.

Be blessed! –JD

Matthew 15:8, 9, 11 “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. 9 They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.” 11 “What goes into a man’s mouth does not make him ‘unclean’, but what comes out of his mouth, that is what makes him ‘unclean’ ”.

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Cute, Comfortable, Convicted or Condemned?

Jesus is considered by scholars such as Weber ...

Jesus is considered by scholars such as Weber to be an example of a charismatic religious leader. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Would you rather be cute than comfortable; Convicted in the spirit or condemned? Or would you rather have Jesus, who died for our sins? Would you live for God and die to sin? I’d rather have Jesus. Amen.

As Christians, we can’t be judgmental, selfish or pick and choose when to be a Christian. We are called to be ambassadors for Christ and must be a representative of God in all situations. Our attitudes, the way we treat others, the way we treat our family and our hearts must be a reflection of who we are in Christ. Under all circumstances, we are to die of self; represent Christ in every aspect of our life.

Being a Christian doesn’t mean you should be someone other than the person you were created to be. However, as a believer it will change the person you once were into the transformed person you are called to be. Being a Christian shouldn’t be that hard. It shouldn’t be that hard to live as the person God designed you to be or to live for God.

If someone were to ask you about your faith, how would you respond? Would you tell them about your faith in God? Or would you remain silent? Not everyone will approve or understand your decision to follow Christ. However, you mustn’t make an excuse to not tell others about Christ.

As believers, God’s Spirit lives in us. Even when others don’t understand the concept that God lives in us. We must not use this as an excuse when someone rejects God. Nor are we to remain silent or fear sharing the Word of God. “We are still one of God’s communication channels (1Cor 2:14, 15).” Be alert. Seize every opportunity. Be a mouthpiece for God’s kingdom.

Your voice can be an inspiration. It can be the voice of reason in someone else decision. When someone asks you about your faith, don’t be afraid to answer as a Christian. Your response can help someone make a conscious decision. “Another person’s question may be evidence that God’s Spirit is drawing him or her to the point of decision” (1Cor 2:14, 15).

Think on these things. And the next time you find yourself faced with such a question, ask yourself, who am I representing? Remind yourself, “I am an ambassador for Christ. I am a Christian.”

Would you rather be cute than comfortable; Convicted in the spirit or condemned? Or would you rather have Jesus? I’d rather have Jesus. Amen.

Be blessed! -JD

1 Corinthians 2:14-16 “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned 15 The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man’s judgment: 16 “For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.

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