Good morning, glad to see you


Nehemiah chapter 3 seems long and daunting when you first read it, but if you pay close attention you find that it is a recounting of everyone who put in work. That might not seem important but think about this those are real people like you and me. Their names are recorded in the Bible for us to read because they put in the work to build what God had planned. God placed a burden on Nehemiah to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem and then he gathered people together to join in that work. They were building something great for and because of God. Who wouldn’t want to do that? I mean when God is moving and you get to be part of that why wouldn’t you want to jump on board?

Well, the nobles of the Tekoites/Tekonites did not want to help. For some reason, these nobles from the city of Tekoa had it in their head that they were above the work. Sure they wanted to enjoy the rebuilt walls but they did not want to put in the work. They thought themselves better than the work. The thing that is nagging at me is not to say “stupid nobles” but instead “God help me not become conceited.” See I have worked in almost every position you can work at in a church. Sunday school check, nursery check, youth group check, preaching check, cleaning toilets and vacuuming check, mowing the lawn no but I would. Now because of a long series of events, I am in a new church and they don’t know my history or ability so what am I doing? I am greeting at the front door. I want to preach, I want to share the Word, I want to pour into people. But none of that is happening right now so I have two choices I can either whine about it and find ways to move into something or I can just shake a hand and say “Good morning, glad to see you.” I am not going to lie it is hard to just say “Good morning, glad to see you” when I have a three-part sermon prepared on Nehemiah. But I know I am not above it (at least, I shouldn’t be), it is what needs to be done so I will bend my neck to the work.

I am still applying for every position I can for full-time work but in the meantime, I cannot become bitter or above something else. Sure there are positions I am not applying for because there are things I don’t feel called to but right now right here I am doing what I can. We cannot become so consumed with the future or ourselves that we neglect the things of now. It is not about doing everything but it is about not having an attitude of being above the work. If we start to think too highly of ourselves then we are the only ones who think that way of ourselves. Jesus said it is better to sit in a lowly place and let someone else move you forward.

Just a thought,


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Insanity Workout and the Book of James

I am about to start the Insanity workout program. I usually like to lift but have no time for that lately and I cannot seem to get rid of some weight that just seems to hang out. I have been doing some light workouts in the morning nothing amazing but enough to not lose too much strength. So I decided I would give Insanity a try.

I watched the commercial, read real reviews online and it looks legit. So at this point I have no reason not to believe the program will work for busting out some fat loss. I have a small amount of faith in the program, but to really build that faith in the program up I am going to need to actually work it out.

That is what James is talking about in James 2:24 “You see then that a man is justified by works, not faith alone.” James is writing to Jewish believers specifically according to verse 1. And while I am not positive I get the feeling some of them took their new found liberty to the wrong place. I get the feeling they were so happy to be freed from a works based system decided they needed to do nothing anymore. That is shown in 2:15-16 when he says if you send someone away who is naked and cold, saying bless you and go in warmth and peace but do not give them anything to be warmed or clothed then you have done nothing.

It is a lot like the talk that goes on nowadays from Christians about this problem and that problem. Most times you can hear a hundred “solutions” but little to no action of any sorts. If prayer is mentioned it is only in word and little actual praying is done (a generalization of course). I have done this and am as guilty as any other. If we talk about the homeless problem but do nothing we have done nothing, if we talk about sex trafficking and do nothing then we have done nothing and so on. Now to be clear I am not talking about “raising awareness” which is done to the masses on FaceBook and Twitter because there is a time for that. But would it not be better if we raised awareness while acting?

I know we cannot be active in every area that needs it but if you are known for working with young pregnant women in need and mention something to raise awareness about homelessness then I am more likely to hear you then if you are only known for raising awareness.

James is talking about your faith causing action. He uses the story of Abraham and Isaac to show this by showing that Abraham’s belief caused action. It was not just a belief that did nothing it was a belief that acted out of the belief.

It is the same way with our faith. I believe Jesus died on a cross and took my sin and shame. That belief is the reason I am who I am today and not who I was before. But my belief in that has changed my behaviour and actions so that now I work because of the change not in order to have that change.

One last thing I think helps is two words in verse 22 of chapter 2. It says “Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works was made perfect.” The words working together is actually one word in the Greek. The word is sunergeo where we get the words synergy or synergism, and it basically means a partnership where both benefit.

When you believe in God’s promises and finished work you have faith, and then when you do a work because of that faith you get more faith and can now do a greater (or more) work which in turn gives you a greater faith. It is a beautiful thing.

Now a word of caution. Do not by any means attempt to earn salvation, favor, or merit from God. No amount of helping the poor, feeding the homeless, clothing the naked, sharing Facebook statuses will get you in with God. Check your motives every time because you will likely start to work and feel like God should have blessed you because you did X, Y, or Z. But it does not work that way because your best work is still pretty lame to be honest.

Just a thought,


Get to work

Eph 2:10 says that God created a work for us to do. More specifically it says “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (NLT).

That is pretty awesome. First God says we are a masterpiece, something special, something more than just worthwhile, but great because of Him. That is something that takes a long time to really understand. The God of the universe, the Creator of heaven and earth. The thinker of stars and galaxies says “I have made you a masterpiece” then He goes so far as to say “I also made something for you to do.” Not only does He take great delight in the work of His hand but He says now go and do likewise.

The main point I want to get across is that while we all have a calling from God, we also have smaller works too. I think everyone will look back at their life and see an overarching work you did. Something you will be remembered for. It might be compassion, or mercy, or love, or gentleness, or passion, but whatever it is there is something you will be known for. But there are smaller works for you to do sometimes within that scope and sometimes outside of it. For example, when you leave the house today to go grocery shopping God could have it in place for you to pay for someone’s food. Maybe He will have you in place to encourage someone who is grieving. It could be as simple as just being an amazing presence in your home to show God’s goodness. Whatever it is God has a plan/work for you today and we can easily miss it.

We can miss it if we think that today is just another day. If we decide that today has no real or lasting importance we can miss our job for the day. I think that we should all take a minute (30 seconds maybe) to ask God a pointed question that can change the whole day. I think we should take just a moment to ask God if He has something He wants us to do today. After all, we call Jesus Lord and Savior. We do not just get a Savior but a Lord as well.