Meeting Him In The Deepest Part Of My Soul

I guess I still struggle with this notion when I brought up the thought to my husband who sat next to me as I was browsing some sites in the Internet last night.

“Why is it that Christians are Lutherans, Baptists, or others? Why not just Christians?”

Even those perfect-looking churches are all made up of once broken people, transformed by the work of the cross. Even those ministers or pastors were once lost, found and reformed by Jesus’ saving grace. Like my husband. Like my child. Like me…And you…

We were all prisoners of many kinds of sins, freed by our Savior Jesus Christ. Am I wrong to say that? Why can’t we be called just plain “Christians”? For everything we attained or lost should be pointed and reflected back at Him Who rescued us from the pits of hell? Doesn’t Jesus deserve all the glory? All the honor? All the thanks and praise?

CHRIST….IAN [I Am Nothing]

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” –John 15:5

Isn’t a Christian  one who is to conform to God’s character? Someone who is called to walk with God as Jesus did? One who is called to live not by his/her own strength but by the power of God? What do you think? Do you struggle with this like I do?

This year, I want to search for His answers in the deepest, not the shallow part of my soul.  To have my roots grow deeper into His love. I can’t do it on my own, that I know. Only by His grace. [“I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13]

The past year had shown so much pain and suffering. Countless lives worried as they faced mountains of trials. Christians included. But as true follower of Jesus, we are called to endure so we can follow God, show trust in Him, draw nearer to Him, please no one but Him, imitate Jesus and reflect Him to those who don’t know Him fully well.

In the prison where I work, deputies do unannounced shakedowns to catch inmates off-guard. During that time, that is when they usually find illegal substances like pruno [alcohol they make from fruits], drugs, or shanks [any improvised weapons]. When our world seem to be shaking, maybe we should consider that God is shaking it to call our attention and truly listen to what He is saying.

 “5Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. 7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.” – Proverbs 3:5-7 [NIV]

“so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God…” – Colossians 1:10 [NIV]

“Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly.”
- 1 Timothy 4:7 [NIV]

Lord, help me find and meet You and hear You speak in the deepest of my soul. Guard me in all of my ways. That I may give you all the glory You alone deserve. Lord, forgive me for all of my lack of attention, those times I remain dry and not wanting to desire for more of You. Lord, I trust only in Your own understanding. Not mine. Give me the strength I need Lord to know more of You and less of me. All the glory, honor, thanks and praise belong to You Oh Lord. Thank You for Your love, mercy and grace. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

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The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]

Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.

Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.

All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.

When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.

The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.

When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.

[Source: NLT Bible ]:

We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.

“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14

Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].

Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.

Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.

Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].