Category Archives: Religion

How Can I Know that I am Saved?


Possibly one of the most common and most pressing questions that individuals ask related to Christianity is, “How can I know that I am saved?” Many times, even though this question is on many people’s minds, they are afraid to admit it because of the belief that to question your salvation is to deny your salvation. This is far from the truth as it should be realized that it is a healthy practice to evaluate our salvation. The Apostle Paul said, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? – unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” (2 Cor. 13:5 ESV). Then, Paul says in Philippians, “…work out your own salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil. 2:12) through which he is calling the church in Philippi to actively pursue making salvation visible in their lives. So, instead of making questioning our salvation a negative thing, we must realize that have a Scriptural mandate to actively test our salvation for its genuineness. In one more place, the Apostle Peter says, “In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith- more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire- may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:6-7). What does Peter say is more precious than gold? The tested genuiness of our faith! The question is:

How can we test the genuine nature of our salvation?

The first step in this process surprises many because it throws off much of the mainstream ideology regarding salvation. The first step in testing the genuineness of salvation is to remove false assurances of salvation that are commonly accepted today. The thirteenth chapter of Matthew gives examples of this in the parable of the sower. In this parable, Jesus says, “A sower went out to sow. And as he sowed, some seeds fell along the path, and the birds came and devoured them. Other seeds fell on rocky ground, where they did not have much soil, and immediately they sprang up, since they had no depth or soil, but when the sun rose they were scorched. And since they had no root, they withered away. Other seeds fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.” (Matt. 13:3-8) Sound a little confusing and irrelevant? Jesus explains. He gives the interpretation as follows: “Hear then the parable of the sower: When anyone hears the word of the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was sown along the path. As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy, yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately he falls away. As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” (Matt. 13:18-23) In this explanation, Jesus gives one of the most vital explanations of true salvation in all of Scripture. The words are incredibly applicable today and forever because they show four different conditions of the heart of those who hear the gospel. First, there are those that hear the truth of salvation but this truth never penetrates their hearts and disappears from their understanding. These would be the individuals that reject the truth as Satan leads them astray from the reality of the need for grace from God. Next, there are those that hear the truth and are overwhelmed with joy over the truth. However, their joy is soon replaced with apathy toward God as the required sacrifice of being a follower of Christ turns them away. Third, there are those individuals that truly hear the truth and receive the truth but the concerns and love for the world supersede their love for Christ. These individuals make money, success, and other worldly idols their gods. Lastly, there are those individuals that not only truly hear the truth and receive the truth but they understand and love the truth. These individuals bear fruit or evidence of their salvation and they reproduce the seed of faith in the lives of others. Only the last example is a true believer because it can be seen through their fruit that they are truly saved. Sadly, many that believe that they are safe in their salvation are instead in one of the first three examples. They are there because their salvation is based upon a “walk down the aisle” or “repeat after me” salvation that never truly took root in their lives and produced fruit. This can be seen in modern day examples such as those famous television preachers that ask their viewers at the end of their sermons to “repeat after me”. Once the simple prayer is repeated, the person is believed to be “born again” because of the repetition of the prayer. Is that really all there is to it? Is there really enough security in that? In order for us to be secure in our salvation, there absolutely must be more to it than a “repeat after me” salvation. The fact is, as R.C. Sproul stated,

“There is nothing worse than having assurance of something that we actually don’t possess.” (R.C. Sproul, pg. 64)

Now, let’s get to the core of the question. What is the source of assurance in our salvation? This is so vital for each and every believer today that this section need be examined carefully. While there is no absolute “check off the box” tests for our salvation, there are things that will exists in a true believer’s life. The first is this: Do you have a genuine love for Jesus Christ? When Jesus was asked in Matthew 22 by the lawyer, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”, Jesus responded, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matt. 22:36-37) Now, a person may say, “Of course I love Jesus! I attend church, read the Bible, pray, etc., etc.” These things ARE NOT what it means to love Christ. Instead, you can love doing these things but still not love Christ. Just ask the church in Ephesus from Revelation 2. You can do those things and still have no affection for the Lord. So, how do we know if we love Him? John 14:15 says, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” (John 14:15) It doesn’t say, “If you keep my commandments, you will love me.” See, to love Jesus truly is to love Him enough to desire to obey His Word. If you say you love Christ but you are willingly and unapologetically involved in a sinful lifestyle, then the love of Christ does not dwell within you. To love Jesus is to obey Him and to grieve over our sin when we rebel against Him. A second thing that will exists in a true believer’s life is true transformation. Theologians refer to this as sanctification which speaks of a change in the internal makeup of a person. When a person truly becomes a Christian, their old self is crucified with Christ (Rom. 6:6) and the new self slowly but surely begins to become evident in the person’s disposition. This new self will show evidence such as changing from old, sinful ways and mentalities found in Galatians 5:19-21 to living out the fruit of the Spirit found in Galatians 5:22. A person may say, “Well, I am a Christian, but I just have never truly allowed God to work in my life to bring about the change that is necessary.” This is impossible! Philippians 1:6 says, “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Notice that Paul says that Jesus will bring salvation to completion. This could be correlated to a process in which something is continually transformed from nothing over the course of time. Christ is continuously doing a work within your spirit if you are a true follower of Christ. He is continuously producing a new person within you that did not exist before. Due to our spiritual apathy and sinful flesh, this process is slower at some points than at others. However, the process never comes to a stop. Never! Lastly, a person can gain assurance in their salvation through the internal witness of the Holy Spirit. At salvation, each believer is indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God and it is this Spirit that convicts us of sin, guides us in righteousness, and warns us of coming judgment. (John 16:8) How do we hear the Spirit’s voice? We hear His voice as we read Scripture. The more we dig into God’s Word, the more the Holy Spirit illuminates the Word to confront us and encourage us in the will of God. The witness of the Holy Spirit becomes so clear in a believer’s life that there is no doubt of His presence within them. If His presence is within you, you ARE a child of God!

In conclusion, there is no more important question to answer than whether or not your salvation is genuine. The more we see the genuineness of our salvation, the more we can give glory to God for the work that He alone is doing in our lives. So, ask yourself, “Do I know that my salvation is genuine? Do I know that I truly belong to Christ?” Make your salvation sure and walk in the joy of His salvation!


Works Cited:

Sproul, R.C. Can I Be Sure I’m Saved? Reformation Trust. Lake Mary, FL. 2010.



Cultural Impact: A Biblical Response to Racism

It doesn’t take the word of an Ivy League professor for us to see that our nation is just as divided now on questions of race as it has ever been. From the events that took place in Ferguson, MO to the recent events in Charlottesville, VA, America has been shaken by divisions that we once believed were settled decades ago. We have seen that bigotry and fascism continue to be alive and well and racial superiority is still the motto by which many choose to live. Undoubtedly, most Christians today would say that racism is a sin and is condemned in the Bible. However, if we are truly being honest with ourselves, we often fail to take an unequivocal stance against racism as we do against homosexuality and abortion. Often it is the case that we allow racism to go on in our midst without taking the stance that Jesus would have us to take.

As followers of Jesus, it is vitally important that we stand just as strongly against any form of racism as we do against any other hot topic of our time. The Bible speaks clearly and unequivocally against racism in any form. For example, the book of Galatians states:

But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. –Galatians 3:28

What is the Apostle Paul saying in this passage? He is saying that, in the eyes of God, the divisions that we create for ourselves do not exist. He is saying that if we are one with Jesus Christ we are one with one another. When God looks at the world, He does not see Caucasians, African Americans, Hispanics, etc. Instead, He sees the work of His hand in each individual. The question that we must ask ourselves is this:

If God does not allow race to be a source of division in His eyes, how can we say that we are justified in doing so ourselves?

    The point is, the book of Genesis tells us that we are all made in the image of God. This is not an exclusive statement. It is not just whites, or Hispanics, or African Americans, or Jews that are made in the image of God. We are ALL made in the image of God and have been given our unique characteristics from the hand of God. This includes all races of every nation.

Now, we may say that racism is far from us and that we in no way participate in the divisions that are taking place. However, we must realize that when we see racism taking place before our eyes and fail to take a stand against it, we are guilty through our apathy. God expects us as His disciples to take a stand for and against the things that He would take a stand for and against. To overcome the divisions that exist in our generation, we must look at all races through the eyes of God.

Treasure that Matters


Have you ever had something cross your path in life that you just had to have and you would do ANYTHING to get it? You constantly daydream about it. It consumes your mind at work and while lying in bed at night. It may have been a car, a house, clothing, or some “treasure” that you just can’t forget about. Maybe it was a relationship with someone that you wanted so badly that it consumed your thoughts and dreams. At some point in our lives, it would be safe to say that the majority of us have had that “treasure” that was just too irresistible to let slip out of our hands. In an illustration known as a parable that Jesus was sharing with His followers, He uses the concept of “irresistible treasure” to explain salvation. This is what He says:

 “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. The in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys the field. –Matthew 13:44 ESV           

In this parable, Jesus tells of a man that finds treasure that is so valuable to him that he immediately covers it back up for safekeeping. This may sound crazy, but in a time in history in which banks and safety deposit boxes were nonexistent, this makes perfect sense! This treasure is extremely important to him, and he wants it secure. For us, this would be the equivalent of our “irresistible thing” that keeps us awake at night. Once we get our hands on that prize, we are going to do everything we can to safeguard it! Now, this is where things get crazy! The man is so overjoyed that he has found this treasure that, not only does he hide it for safekeeping, but he goes and sells all his possessions to buy the field that the treasure is hidden in. This is where things get crazy, because, there may be things in life that we want, but there aren’t too many things, if anything at all, that we would be willing to give up all our possessions to get. However, this man is willing to give up ALL to gain this treasure. No questions asked! The question is: What would be so wonderful that it would warrant giving up everything to gain? The answer is simple and Jesus gives it right at the beginning: The kingdom of heaven. In modern language: Salvation.

What is Jesus saying in this parable? He is saying that there is a treasure that is worth sacrificing every worldly possession that we could ever own to gain and that is the salvation that He gives. Why is salvation that valuable? What is it about salvation that makes it more precious than anything we could ever own? First, salvation reaches beyond the time restraints of this life and goes with us into eternity. Jim Elliott, the great missionary and martyr, said,

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain that which he cannot lose.”

See, your cars, your money, your gold, and your fame cannot go with you into eternity. Once this life ends, your possessions end with it. However, salvation is the one thing that matters after this life ends. It is the ONLY thing that matters! When we stand before God, we will not be able to buy our way into heaven, but we will be able to enter based on faith in Jesus Christ. That will be the only currency that matters. Second, salvation is beyond the value of any other treasure because of the relationship with Christ that comes with it. Jesus said in John 17:3 ESV, “And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” Eternal and meaningful life is not found in the treasures of this world, but it is found in the relationship that we have with God through Jesus Christ His Son. In that relationship is an abundance of peace and joy. That treasure is worth giving up everything we could ever consider valuable here on earth to gain. That is treasure that matters!

Joseph and the Providence of God

JosephDivineProvidenceHave you ever noticed how easy it is to believe that God is in control when things are going well? When our health is good, our family is safe, and our jobs are secure, it’s easy to say, “God is good!” But what about the times in life when things take a turn for the worst? What about those times that our health fails us, our family comes under attack, or the security of our jobs becomes a thing of the past? It is in these moments that our belief in God as Provider is tested the most. It is in these moments that we often turn to God and say, “Why won’t you take control?” See, when we go from a mountaintop to a valley, we tend to go into shock and we lose all sense of spiritual confidence. We feel as though God has left us and has rejected us for reasons that we can’t understand.
The story of Joseph, the son of Jacob, is the epitome of a riches to rags story. The story of Joseph is found in Genesis 37-50 and is the account of a man that one day was on top of the world and the next was at the bottom of a pit. At a young age, Joseph was favored by his father and was immensely blessed by God. His father loved him so greatly that he gave him a beautifully adorned cloak of magnificent colors that made him stand out from all others. Called the “dreamer” by his older brothers because of the visions that God had given him of his future, he was despised by those that should have loved him most. Because of their jealousy and pride, Joseph’s brothers developed a plot to throw him into a pit and then sell him to a caravan of slave traders headed to Egypt. After selling Joseph, the brothers take Joseph’s cloak and cover it with goat’s blood and report to Jacob that Joseph has been slaughtered by a fierce animal. Jacob is beyond distraught at the news and refuses to be comforted and in one day Joseph finds himself moving from the mountaintop to the valley of his life. Things only begin to get worse as Joseph arrives in Egypt and finds himself as a servant in the house of an Egyptian official named Potiphar. As Joseph begins to work in the household of Potiphar, the Egyptian notices the wisdom and presence of God that Joseph contains and he places Joseph as overseer of his household. However, Joseph finds himself moving once again from mountaintop to valley as Potiphar’s wife attempts to seduce Joseph. When Joseph refuses, Potiphar’s wife accuses him of assault and Joseph finds himself in prison.

Now, let’s stop there for a moment because the application to our lives is so important at this point. See, we often find ourselves going through life serving God and thinking that everything should be fantastic. Today’s prosperity gospel tells us that, if we are right with God, then all is well and no illness, financial hardship, or conflict will come our way! However, just as Joseph did, we run into a wall in which life takes a turn for the worst due to circumstances beyond our control. We find ourselves in a physical and emotional “prison” and we don’t understand why God allowed us to get there. This is where we so badly need to see the providence of God at work in the life of Joseph. Let’s continue…

While Joseph is in prison, he meets two Egyptians that once worked for Pharaoh, King of Egypt as chief cupbearer and chief baker. While in prison, the two men have dreams that they can’t understand that rattle them to the core. In a God-ordained moment, God uses Joseph to interpret the dreams of the two men which subsequently come true. In payment for his interpretation, Joseph asks the men to remember him when they return to the house of Pharaoh. Of course, the men promise and the chief cupbearer returns to Pharaoh but forgets Joseph. However, before long, Pharaoh has a dream of his own. Pharaoh calls his magicians in but no one can interpret the dream. In this moment, the chief cupbearer remembers Joseph and tells Pharaoh of Joseph’s interpretive ability. God once again uses Joseph, interprets the dream to Pharaoh, and reveals the reality of a famine that is coming to the land of Egypt. Now, this is where it gets really good! Joseph, the former slave and prisoner, is placed second only to Pharaoh as administrator over Egypt and oversees preparation for the famine. He begins to stockpile grain and prepare for the rough years of famine ahead. At the same time, Joseph’s brothers and father are going through the pain of the famine and decide to make a trip to Egypt for food. Upon arriving, in a moment of uncanny irony and providence, the brothers have an encounter with Joseph. As they arrive in the sight of Joseph, they bow down before him and in a moment, fulfill the dreams that Joseph had as young man. Joseph is moved to tears at the sight of his brothers, yet he hides his identity. Over the next few days, Joseph places his brothers under a test. This wasn’t a test to punish them or to get revenge, but it was a test to determine the condition of their hearts. The brothers pass the test by showing their genuine love and concern for their youngest brother Benjamin by being willing to take his place in lifetime service to Joseph. As Joseph is moved by this act, he reveals his identity to his brothers. Understandably, his brothers are overwhelmed by one emotion: Fear! Fear of revenge because anyone that had been through what Joseph had been through would rightfully want revenge, wouldn’t they? After the life he had lived and suffered through, there would be nothing wrong with getting even, right? In every way, wrong!

See, when things take bad turns in life and our situations become painful and difficult, it is often the case that bitterness toward God and others sets in. However, this wasn’t the case with Joseph. In fact, this is what Joseph says to his brothers in Genesis 50:19-21 ESV, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God? As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. So do not fear, I will provide for you and your little ones.” Thus he comforted them and spoke kindly to them. What powerful words those are that we truly need to hear! Whenever we go through rough times in life, instead of questioning God and accusing God of wronging us, we need to speak to ourselves and say, “Am I in the place of God?” The fact is, we are in no position to be able to know the entire mind of God and His plans for our tomorrow. What looks like an insurmountable valley to us may be a necessary place in our lives that God uses to prove His sovereignty in our lives. Joseph knew that, even though there were serious valleys in his life, God’s providence never fails. He knew that God would use every good AND bad situation to bring about a perfect plan. The perfect plan resulted in, not only Joseph’s well-being, but in the well-being of the entire Hebrew people! The same God of providence is alive and well and is working in your life today in the good AND the bad. Instead of being overwhelmed by bitterness or anger towards God, respond by realizing that He knows what He is doing. Remember, Romans 8:28 ESV says, “for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Whether you are on the mountaintop or in the valley, He IS the God of providence!

Cultural Impact: Beauty and the Beast

g_beautyandthebeast2017_08_78bde778If you have a young daughter at home, then you have probably been asked, “Can I go see Beauty and the Beast?” I know that my 8-year-old daughter has been asking my wife and I this question since the day that she discovered Disney was sending this childhood movie remake to theatres! Starring such huge names as Emma Watson, Ian McKellen, and Ewan McGregor, Beauty and the Beast is scheduled to come out in theatres on March 17th. The movie is set to be a Box Office hit and will undoubtedly have numbers of parents standing in line with their daughters. However, my wife and I will not be parents standing in that line. Why, you ask? Is it because we are trying to deprive our little girl from the joys of childhood? Are we just simply anti-Disney? The answer to both of those questions is NO! So, what is the big deal?

On Wednesday, March 1st, 2017,  Elahe Izadi of The Washington Post wrote an article entitled, “Beauty and the Beast to Have Disney’s First-Ever Exclusively Gay Moment” (Izadi, 2017). Yes, you read that right! As if our children have not been confused by our sex-crazed culture enough, Disney has decided to take the long-anticipated opportunity to create its first openly gay scene in one of the most anticipated children’s movies of the year. According to Izadi, the scene involves one of the movie’s openly gay characters named LeFou and another male character name Gaston as LeFou begins to discover that he has “feelings” for Gaston that go beyond friendship. The director of the movie, Bill Condon, states, “LeFou is somebody who on one day wants to be Gaston and on another day wants to kiss Gaston…. He’s confused about what he wants. It’s somebody who’s just realizing that he has these feelings. And Josh makes something really subtle and delicious out of it. And that’s what has its payoff at the end, which I don’t want to give away. But it is a nice, exclusively gay moment in a Disney movie” (Izadi, 2017). With that simple statement, Mr. Condon treats the scene as a “nice and delicious” moment that should be anticipated with excitement by all. It should be a moment that gives us all hope and promise, right? The problem is, through incorporating this character and scene into The Beauty and the Beast, Disney has not brought hope or promise at all. Instead, Disney has shown to us the depraved spiritual and sexual condition of a culture that has turned away from the God in whose image we are made. This is the same condition that the Apostle Paul described in Romans 1:26 when he wrote, “For this reason God gave them up to dishonorable passions. For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were confused with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error. And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.”

This will not be “politically correct”, but Scripture is clear in its condemnation of the practice of homosexuality. Paul clearly said that homosexuality is dishonorable and contrary to nature. Not only in Romans, but 1 Corinthians 6:9 and 1 Timothy 1:10 are additional examples. Now, I do want to address this very important point that we as Christians so often get wrong: Homosexuality is sin just as lust is sin and just as greed is sin. We so often put homosexuality in a category all its own and we act as if those that struggle with it are irreparably condemned. This is not the case! God is more than willing to forgive all sin when we come to him in true repentance (1 John 1:9). We are to love those that struggle with homosexuality as we would love anyone else with struggles of the flesh and we are to lead them to repentance. At the same time, saying that homosexuality is an innate form of love that should be accepted by all is completely against the Truth of Scripture. But that is where we are in our world today. We live in an era in which the lines are so blurred that everything we believe is relative and there really is no moral truth. That is why it is so vital that we as Christians take a stand and say, “I will not be forced to accept what I know is against Scripture!” Be prepared! We will be called intolerant, judgmental, intellectually primitive, and more. But didn’t Jesus say in Matthew 5:11-12, “Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” When we stand up for the Truth, we are going to be ridiculed and rejected but that should not detour us. If we don’t teach our children to take a stance that aligns with Scripture, then we will find them taking a stance that aligns with the world.

Works Cited

Izadi, Elahe. “Beauty and the Beast to Have Disney’s First-Ever Exclusively Gay Moment”. (1 March 2017) The Washington Post. Web. Accessed on 6 March 2017. Retrieved from

Cultural Impact: Have We Lost Valuable Communication?

textingDo you remember the days of visiting someone at home and spending hours in conversation? What about the days of writing a letter to someone that didn’t require you to be limited to “140 characters or less”? For those of us that grew up before the age of the iPhone, Facebook, Twitter, and text messaging, we can recall those days. But for so many, the text has replaced the voice of a friend or loved one and Facebook Messenger has replaced face-to-face conversation. Why is this a problem? Well, just have someone hide behind their smartphone and send you a text that says, “I’m fine”, when in reality the look on their face is full of sadness and pain. Behind the smartphone or tablet, we can’t see the hurts, concerns, and pains of others. Forbes reports that 7% of all communication is spoken or written language and 93% is body language (Forbes, 2012). In today’s world of emoji’s, OMG’s and BFF’s, we need to ask, “How do I really know what another person is going through when all I can see is a text screen?” Don’t get me wrong! I believe that technology and social media have extraordinary benefits and that today’s world provides wonderful opportunities for the spread of the Gospel. However, I also believe that we are lacking in so much of the personal, meaningful conversation that we once had.

In Hebrews 10:24-25 ESV, the Scripture says, “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.” This Scripture speaks of the importance of the gathering of Christians. Today, we as Americans typically gather together on Sunday mornings, Sunday nights, and Wednesdays. However, even this is coming under attack in our age due to the belief that we can “get the same thing from home by watching the preacher on TV”. This viewpoint is harmful to Christians in ways that we so often overlook. The question is: Why does Hebrews say that it is important that we gather together? The simple reasoning is: to stir up one another to love and good works. We are to gather together, whether it’s in one-on-one conversation in our homes or in a church setting, to encourage one another to grow in love and to grow in ministry. When we are able to sit and look into the face of someone we are communicating with, we are able to show multitudes more care and concern than through an electronic device. Simultaneously, when we choose to limit our communication to the one line text or the 140-character tweet, we are depriving ourselves of the mutual encouragement and love that comes from spending time with one another as Christians. When we choose to let the sermon on TV be our church service for the week, we are depriving ourselves of the encouragement and accountability that comes along with gathering with other believers. (I do want to throw in a disclaimer: It is completely understood that there are those that are unable to attend services due to disability.) The point is, we sincerely must evaluate our lives and discover whether we have allowed today’s technology to rob us of the beauty of personal communication.

So, ask yourself this question: Am I still allowing time in my life for the kind of communication with others that truly matters? Now, don’t go and throw your smartphone or tablet in the trash! Instead, try turning them off for 24-48 hours and spend some one-on-one time with someone that you can encourage in the Lord.


Works Cited

Tardanico, Susan. Is Social Media Sabotaging Real Communication? (30 April 2012). Forbes.     Web. Accessed 2 March 2017. Retrieved from

Should I Worry?


Have you ever found yourself lying in bed, watching the hours roll by because you are overwhelmed with worry? Then, you wake up the next morning, exhausted, and the worry game starts all over again. The American Psychological Association survey states that the top three stressors in our lives are finances, work, and family responsibilities respectively (APA, 2017). Many of us are living testaments to the truth of this survey. It was once said that ulcers are not caused so much by what you eat but by what is eating you! The question that we as Christians need to be asking ourselves is: Should I worry?

Jesus said in Matthew 6:25-26 ESV, “Do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?” These words are some of the clearest of any words throughout Scripture on the topic of worry. What was Jesus saying? First, we need to understand what Jesus was not saying. Jesus was not saying that we can go through our lives without planning. Second, despite what many prosperity preachers say today, Jesus was not saying that if we trust God enough our lives will be problem free. The hard lives of so many faithful men and women in Scripture put a huge hole in prosperity gospel theology. So, again, what was Jesus saying?

Jesus was telling us in these verses that before we waste the hours of our lives with worry, we need to understand the power of His provision. We need to understand as children of God that He is more than willing and able to provide the necessities of our lives. The comparison that Jesus makes between you and the birds and the lilies of the field could not be more of an exaggerated comparison. The reason Jesus did this was to show that, if He cares and provides for something so insignificant as the lilies of the field, then we can be assured that He will care for us. See, the birds and the lilies are here today and gone tomorrow. Yet, they are provided for by God’s hand. You and I have so much more than the birds and the lilies could ever have. God has given us supreme dominion in His creation, the promise of everlasting life, the status of adopted sons and daughters, and the reality of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. If we have been given so much more, will we not be provided for? In Matthew 6:31 and 33, Jesus makes the most important statement of all, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’….But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

This is the central message: We are to plan, work hard, and be good stewards of what God has given to us. We are to refuse to waste away our lives worrying about what tomorrow might hold. We are to refuse to live materialistic lives in which our desires are always for more. Instead, we are to focus our eyes upon the salvation of the Lord and realize that He is our Provider. He is the perfect Father that never fails to care for His own. Take your focus off your worries, and focus your eyes upon the salvation of God.


Works Cited

“2015 Stress in America” (2017) American Psychological Association. Web. Retrieved 27 Feb 2017 from