Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Lord, what do you require for me?

Titus 1:1-4
1Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ for the faith of God's elect and the knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness— 2a faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, 3and at his appointed season he brought his word to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior,
4To Titus, my true son in our common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

As I press on through the book of Titus, I am finding my true colors coming through. Since it's been awhile.......the reason I am studying Titus myself is to see where God has raised the standards in my personal life for the calling I have had so impressed upon me lately. When I stop and think about the leaders that I know of, it would be VERY easy for me to sit here and say, "Oh but Lord, didn't you see them do this? or that?" As an audience member that is always a very easy task wouldn't you say? I'm sure there are people who read this blog that think I'm full of it or I'm a hypocrite and I'm sure much worse. And I will be very honest, there have been many times where I have been involved in gossip, jealousy and certainly not one who would be called "holy or disciplined". And do I have anything to say that would justify myself? No........I honestly do not. Those times where I have acted wrong, I simply shouldn't have.

But what I've found truly amazing through this process is: 1. Not only is God's grace amazing, but it's extremely necessary in becoming a woman of God. I have stated time after time that I believe so much of our sin comes from not even recognizing it BEFORE it happens. We don't allow ourselves time to think about what we are going to say and how it's going to effect the next thing we have to say. Remember verse 1 of Titus? "The KNOWLEDGE of Truth which leads to godliness". Recognize our sin, turn completely away and then WALK IN GRACE.

2. Sometimes the truth hurts. No one likes to hear of things they have done wrong in their lives, or how they have offended someone or maybe that there are things about them that need to be changed. If I sat here long enough I could probably write a whole different blog on all the things I've done wrong in my life and that need to be changed!!! But as a woman of God, as this verse states, "The truth leads to godliness." If we get SO offensive about everything and have to justify everything we've ever done.......then there is no good in that. I can't even begin to imagine how much criticism Beth Moore or Joyce Meyer face on a DAILY basis. But where do they draw the line? I'm sure when the line doesn't align with scripture! Are we carrying ourselves the way Christ intends us to be? Are we treating our families and our husbands with the utmost respect and love? (huge struggle for me, "I'm the momma and I said so"). Do people want to be around us? Are we constantly judging others? Do we act stuck up or not approachable? So in becoming a woman of God, we have to take our criticism and weigh it carefully.....not always pass it aside. Because after the "weeds" are picked........a beautiful garden awaits!

3. We gotta know our stuff. "A faith and knowledge resting on the HOPE of eternal life" I love how this verse puts FAITH first and THEN our knowledge. We have to know where we stand on issues of life. BUT all of it has to come from the knowledge that we personally have sought after in our walks with Christ. I simply cannot stand it when people go to church and listen to the sermon, write down every word preacher says and then base everything they believe on what that man has said. NOW, hear me out........I think we should INTENTLY listen to our pastors and soak up all their knowledge but did you catch that........it's THEIR knowledge. We have to study and dwell in God's word and figure out what God is saying to us personally. If you don't.......then how will you ever know if what your pastor is saying aligns with God's word?? AND how will you ever know if God is requiring a message for you to share if you don't personally study God's word alone? Now, I soak up all the sermons and books and TV programs that my mind can handle, but I wouldn't trade my one on one time alone with God's word for anything.......I get more from those times then I ever have in any sermon or program I have ever seen or heard. I think in every Beth Moore study I've done somewhere she has always stated to NEVER use her words as a replacement for God's scripture. I take that very seriously. I remember one time as I was doing one of her studies I was so into "her words" that God's spirit so impressed upon me to stop reading right at that moment and pick up my bible and let Him speak!

Well wow.......my second day with writing my thoughts on Titus and we hardly made it to verse 2!! There's so much awesome stuff in this book of the bible. I can't wait to share with you more of my thoughts and desires that God has given me. Off to take the girl's to the dentist and lot's of running around today. Have a blessed, awesome day!!!


Lisa said...

Thanks Nikki....
you have challenged me to look at the way I treat my kids and husband today. I am one of those ..."I am the mama and I said so." kinda person also.

Have a great day in the lord and remember HE HAS PREPARED THE WAY.

Love ya girl,

Sharon said...

The other day I wanted to eat some beef jerky but my teeth were sore from my braces. My husband jokingly said that He would chew it for me.Yes, I know--gross!Of course I said no, because half the fun of eating is chewing.
That is so along the lines of what you were talking about this morning. If I go to church and don't ever go to the word and chew over it myself--I miss out on most of the fun. I want the good stuff.
So, I agree---listen to what they say and then sit down to the meal and do a little chewing yourself.
Good post.
Hope I didn't gross you out.
Have a fantastic day in the Lord.

CrownLaidDown said...

I've missed you Nicki! With vacation and friends visiting, I have been hurried...so I will need to get myself rested tonight and promise to come by tomorrow and catch up with you!

Praying for you all...your family is beautiful...you are so pretty!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!
Love in Him,

PS Your bro's pup is the cutest!