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Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Ramblings and Reasonable Service

     I started beating myself up this morning - as I logged into blogspot - with a thought on my heart to BLOG. My thoughts were, "I am quite possibly the most inconsistent blogger in the world!" Seeing as how I blogged TWO times in 2015! With February 2015 being the most recent.
     But then that little inner voice spoke up passionately! (The voice I have come to recognize and appreciate as the person who takes care of this girl... takes responsibility for my total health and wellness - better known as "Self-talk") Yes - okay - I talk to myself! 
     So today I said, "Hey, take it easy! You were entering a two year Masters program at the end of February 2015 - and by the way - you have buckled down and will be finishing it in February of 2016! Yes - a two-year degree in ONE year! So don't be beating yourself up - you've worked harder than most... accomplished more than enough... and on top of your education goals - you've kept some pretty big commitments that you made to yourself spiritually, physically and financially. So, way to go girl! Now blog on..."
     Okay! Now, here are my thoughts for this cool, crisp, January morning. I have been mulling a passage of scripture over in my heart...
Matthew 15:10-11
And he called the multitude, and said unto them, Hear, and understand: Not that which goeth into the mouth defileth a man; but that which cometh out of the mouth, this defileth a man.
Matthew 15:15-20
Then answered Peter and said unto him, Declare unto us this parable. And Jesus said, Are ye also yet without understanding? Do ye not yet understand, that whatsoever entereth in at the mouth goeth into the belly, and is cast out into the draught? But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man: but to eat with unwashen hands defileth not a man.
     Jesus is so brilliantly explaining a new concept to His disciples - which was totally blowing their mind. Their rituals of washing and cleansing were deeply imbedded in their lives and hearts.
     Here is what I am receiving today. Jesus was concerned more with what was being manifest on the outside - because it was a reflection of what was REALLY going on inside!
     Let me ask a few questions...
1- Is your desire to be attractive more overpowering than your desire to be holy?
2- Is your desire to be appealing stronger than your desire to be pure?
     Clearly what is manifest on the outside is the evidence of what is happening on the inside. 
     We can say we are in Love with Jesus - but when we dress and prepare ourselves for the day in a manner that is guaranteed to attract sexual attention - our true love is revealed. When married men have to force themselves to look away from your revealing clothing - a defilement is being manifest in you. 
     We can call ourselves Christians and claim to desire to be like Christ - we may even have rules that we think are keeping us safe and saved... "Don't go here, Don't go there. Don't watch this - Don't listen to that." But true defilement is manifest outwardly through nasty attitudes, perverted conversation, filthy language, rude remarks, racial prejudice, disrespect, rebellion towards authority... and the list goes on.  
     The Word of God is clear that we are to present our body - holy - unto God. Many of us think we do. 
     I submit that we are presenting our bodies to God every day as we enter into our public lives - through the way we dress; our attitude; our persona; the way we treat others; our integrity. There are not two presentations - one for the public and one for God. Many people have one presentation for "church" and another presentation for "everyday life". This is a delusion. 
     If each of us examined ourselves each day and honestly presented ourselves in a way that we felt God would accept as holy and spiritually alive; we would see a remarkable difference in our lives, homes and communities... and our churches would be consumed with the fire of His Spirit!
Romans 12:1 
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."