Thursday, January 20, 2011

False Advertising

I use hair gel. More than my share. If you look at my picture, you’ll probably realize why. Natural curl! I use the gel to tame my curly locks. If I didn’t, I’d have an afro (seriously, I would!). My hair has become curlier and curlier throughout the years. So I have befriended the hair gel and some other choice hair products.

The gel I currently have says, “New! Wind resistant!” on the front. Seriously, wind resistant? Who are we kidding, folks?! Although it’s pretty good gel, I’ve never honestly come across anything that can keep my hair from being blown around by this many times fierce Iowa wind.

I see it all the time, false advertisement. Every product you see is “New and improved”, “Bigger and Better” or some fat free product “Tastes great”. Yeah, not so much. It’s like I’m immune to false advertisement. I expect it. I ignore it. I don’t take any of the hype too seriously. I don’t count on any of it to be true. I have an “I’ll believe it when I see it” attitude.

BUT I have learned to count on one source. I’ve learned that there’s one place I’ll never find false advertisement. God’s Word! All of God’s promises prove true (Proverbs 18:30 the verse on my blog header). I’ve learned that even when it sounds too good to be true, if it’s in God’s Word I can believe it.

My sins CAN be forgiven. I DO have a purpose and God DOES have a plan for my life. I AM loved and I CAN love others. In fact, I CAN do all things through Him who gives me strength. He WILL supply all my needs. I CAN experience true freedom, peace, joy and hope. His grace IS sufficient. His mercies ARE renewed every morning. I CAN know how to live because His Word gives me a guide.

Honestly, all of this sounds too good to be true. But it IS true!

Although my hair gel will probably never be truly “wind resistant” I know that I truly can resist the devil and live a life pleasing to the Lord…because the Bible, God’s Word to us, says so and I believe it!

What about you? Have you been in God’s Word lately? God’s Word is alive and powerful! Do you believe that the words there are words inspired and ordained by God Himself? Words that He wants to speak to YOUR heart! Do you know that God’s Word is TRUE, God’s Word is full of PROMISES to you and me and that God NEVER breaks a promise?

He is a FAITHFUL, LOVING Father who will never leave or forsake you! Even though it sounds too good to be true. You can count on it because His Word says so…and there’s NO false advertisement there!!

Love to you friends!!  I'm going to go read my Bible and see what He wants to say to me today. Will you join me?  :)

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.
Hebrews 4:12

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Something In Common

I am blessed to have friends. A wide variety of friends. As a young person we tend to have friends a lot like us…same grade, same age, same interests, etc. As I’ve aged I’ve made friends with some unlikely people.

I have one friend who thinks passing gas on demand is hilarious (my very lady-like mother will shutter at this thought!). I have another pretty little friend who loves going to yard sales (like me), but has to stop to re-curl her eyelashes and reapply lipstick between stops (unlike me). Then there is another friend who is a great fan of basketball. In fact, she “lived and breathed” it while growing up. Me, well, I’ve never been that interested in basketball, not even as a tall girl who grew up in the Hoosier state. I think I played basketball in P.E. a couple of times. I don’t recall liking it that much. (P.S. I do, however, enjoy watching our nieces and nephew play basketball now!)

There are more friends I could list, but you get the idea. Each of my friends are unique. Each of my friends are special. Each of my friends have taught me something. Some I talk to often, some I do not. Still, they are my friends…and we always manage to pick up right where we left off.

A couple of things I’ve learned down through the years: the old saying is true, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover” AND Wilbur the pig from Charlotte’s Web (the kid’s movie) knew what he was singing about when he said, “We have lots in common where it really counts…What we look like doesn’t count an ounce. We have lots in common where it really counts.”  :)

As different as we all are, we’re all a lot alike really. Perhaps we have different interests or talents. Perhaps we have different lifestyles or backgrounds. Perhaps our outward appearances set us apart from one another. Still, what’s inside is more alike than it is not. I don’t like stereotyping any more than I like to be stereotyped myself because I have learned that there’s a lot more to us than what meets the eye.

No matter what our circumstances we all have our aches and pains…whether physical or internal. We all have times of stress and times of joy…and all of us desire to share these times with someone.

We’re human beings which means we’re looking for happiness and no matter what happiness we find, we’re always looking for something else…something more. The successful single woman wishes for a mate. The married woman wishes for a more romantic husband…or for the “perfect” marriage that all of us grew up dreaming of (that no one told us takes a lot of work to achieve). The career woman longs to stay home. The stay-at-home mom longs for adult conversation and interaction. You get the idea!

We all experience times of loneliness no matter who surrounds us. We are humans with flaws, with insecurities and we make our own share of mistakes. We all have selfish tendencies. Yet, we all have a desire to love and be loved. We need each other.

Still, more than that we need a Savior! We don’t need a religion; we need a relationship with the One and only true God!

“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans 3:23 BUT there is HOPE for those of us who believe!!  II Corinthians 5:15 says that Jesus Christ died for everyone so that those who choose to receive Him can have a new life! AND "...anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!" II Corinthians 5:17 

I’m thankful for my friends. I’m thankful for my family. I’m glad to know we all have so much in common and to know that I’m not alone in my feelings. I need other people. BUT none of these people can fulfill the longings in my heart to be accepted, understood and completely loved as Jesus Christ can!! No one else can free me! No one else paid the penalty for me! No One else can give me a NEW LIFE!  No one else fills that empty longing like my Savior, Jesus! No one else can give me TRUE hope, peace and joy!

HE is that One thing that all of us need!

What do you have in common with the widow down the street? The old man on the bench at Wal-Mart? The teenager sitting across from you with her arms crossed? The teller at the bank or the cashier at the grocery store? I believe the answer is, way more than you might have ever imagined!

Who within your reach needs a loving friend today? Who needs to meet your Savior, the best friend of all? I encourage you to open your eyes and see, REALLY see, others around you today! You may be surprised what you find…and what friends you make!

I am blessed to have friends! I am even more blessed to have a relationship with my Savior, Jesus Christ!!

If you’re the one longing for a friend, I encourage you to reach out. Reach out to others and reach out your heart to the One who loves you…the One who created you and sent His son to die for you…the One who can fill those empty longings! If you have questions or need someone to talk to, please e-mail me I’d love to talk with and pray for you!! I bet we have a lot in common.  :)
Remember: No one cares to meet your Savior, until they’ve seen the reality of His love lived out in your life!

This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends. John 15:13