Text Size: Zoom In

What Matters Now

Am beginning the day with this thought: Those of us who have found life in Christ, and who can speak and write gratefully about our BC/AD story have a big challenge today.

On one hand we have discovered that– by nothing more than entrusting ourselves to what Jesus did for us– he has settled forever what matters most: our eternal relationship with him and his Father. In Christ, and apart from any good thing we have done, all that belongs to him now belongs to us. In God’s eyes, his death was in the place of our death. His payment for sin was made in our name. His resurrection is the guarantee of our resurrection into the eternal presence of God– and far more, eternally more, infinitely more than we can now know or imagine.

That’s one side of the truth.

Here’s the other. When it comes to our credibility and experience today,

It’s not a matter of what we believe, but what we are believing; not what we think, but what we are thinking; not what we have done, but what we are doing; not what we love, but who we are loving; not what we’ve prayed, but what, and how we are praying, acting, and waiting…

By those decisions we will decide how open we are to what he wants to do in us, and through us– today…

Vote on whether you think this post is something you'll be thinking about:
Vote This Post DownVote This Post Up (+46 rating, 46 votes)

13 Responses to “What Matters Now”

  1. Motorcycleminister says:

    Mart…You are so right. I am involved in prison ministry on a weekly basis and facilitate a group of of murderers, etc.. I explain to them that it is our thinking that matters, thus our actions will follow. I share with them that with Christ in their lives their actions will change and thus they will learn to be more loving like Christ. This has taught me to pray more and listen to His Word and Thoughts, and not mine. BC, I was a Jew who just followed the customs and knew about God. AD, I now have accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior and attempt each day to pray, listen, and follow the Word of God and ask Him to direct me, and not do what I want to do. With God’s Love, Barry

  2. SFDBWV says:

    Before my son Matt wrecked his car and his mother came down with cancer, I had stepped out of a cycle of my life and thought that I was right where God wanted me. Taking off on a new and wonderful adventure filled with ideas of being all I could be for Christ. Matthew and I took communion together and rededicated our lives for Christ.

    Then everything I had been familiar with changed. Suddenly I found myself unable to go and do what I wanted because I had to be there for them. Suddenly my life was not mine at all.

    Churches all over were praying for us. People were hearing about our troubles filled with compassion many offered to help as they could. Many more kept us on their prayer lists. For miles around we were prayed for and watched.

    Almost 2 years later, I met with a group from the American Red Cross. It was over a completely unconnected matter. When I need to meet with people like that I have them come to my home. As leaving Matt presents some problems for him and me. Anyway one of the fellows realized I was the Person whom their church had heard of years earlier. With tears in his eyes he told me of how much our struggle had effected him and brought to him a better relationship with his own family.

    I wanted to be a “healer” I wanted deeply to be able to go and heal in the name of JESUS. I wanted to completly quit my old life and be an old fashioned tent revivalist right down to healing the sick restoring the crippled people and proclaiming CHRIST……my way.

    God had other plans for Matthew and I. And his mother.

    There is much I could tell of the daily, hourly struggles that goes on in my life. However one thing is clear. God is using us ….HIS way.

    What comes out of our mouth’s is what is in our hearts. What we do with our hands is putting thoes words into action. Faith without works is dead.

  3. sitsathisfeet says:

    Mart This is so true, as I’m going through the things I’m going through with my divorce,bankruptcy,foreclosure,looking for a job, place to live etc, etc my kids and I have had to rely on the Lord every day. I know even though I may lose everything I still have my faith, the prayers of the faithful, a high priest who sympathisizes with my suffering, the joy of my salvation and everything in Christ. God who owns the cattle on a thousand hills is not short on resources, and he is, has been and will be faithful to supply all our needs. We know this to be true. And for the myriad of decisions each day we must look to the Lord. “A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Prov. 16:9 And, “My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord. Isaiah 55:8 Praise God!

  4. rokdude5 says:

    Paul said in Phil 4:8, “…think about such things”. Lets take it to the next level and DO such things. James 1:22.

    BTW, since Thanksgiving is not too far off now, thanks Mart for this blog. Where our churches preach at us, you afforded us a “round table discussion” that most likely not found there yet I find so needed.

    I see it multiplying already. Youre going to be really busy pretty soon. “RJ”

  5. poohpity says:

    We are like mirrors reflecting our beliefs and sometimes I have to remember to clean mine because it gets a little cloudy or hazy.:)

  6. violet D says:

    From personal experience – I have found that often is not too difficult to “..Go where He wants me to go ..” but WAY more difficult to ..”stay where He wants me to stay…”. Years ago I prayed for ‘patience’ and am STILL learning – and waiting – “Leaning on the everlasting arms …”

  7. daisymarygoldr says:

    It is very true that our simple faith in Christ guarantees us salvation from eternal death and also the gift of eternal life. In this, we see the faithfulness of God in providing Christ for our sins and Christ’s faithfulness to endure the cross on our behalf.

    “When it comes to our credibility and experience today” by virtue of our oneness with Christ, we come to share in his faithfulness. We then begin to live a life of faith that is marked by self-giving love and sacrificial service. What does it mean to share in His faithfulness? When facing difficult and painful situations, we can easily become discouraged by those adverse conditions or by our false expectations…and we may give up, run away, or fail to carry out our responsibilities. In times like this, Christ’s faithfulness will make us to continue on in spite of the circumstances.

    Now, our thoughts are certainly not His thoughts and what we see as failures may not necessarily be a failure in His eyes. God is not interested in my being successful because Christ has already succeeded on my behalf. God desires me to remain ‘faithful’ no matter how bad the situation or how negative the outcome is.

    For what credit is it if we believe Him when everything is going good? However, if we endure through suffering and pain, this is pleasing to God. God is faithful, Christ is faithful and in turn we remain faithful! This is how we decide to remain open to what he wants to do in us, and through us– today…Not trying to scare, but just sharing my practical thoughts…

    sitsathisfeet, you are in my daily prayers…

    poohpity, couldn’t answer your Q yesterday as I was too emotionally exhausted and after all that talking, even I was confused with my post:)

  8. macsisson22 says:

    I prayed for patience also. Very funny God! (LOL)

    Does anyone else consider that since we are to “pray without ceasing” we should be in constant awareness and communication with God, regardless of where we are physically? Does anyone else consider that we are called to be a light in dark places and not a bonfire sitting in church pews? Does anyone else consider that we are ministering when we are playing pool at the local pool hall or scuba diving or having a glass of wine with the family around the dinner table?

    Is there anyone else that likes the alternitive rendering of the Westminster shorter catechism that I once read, “Glorify God BY enjoying Him all the days of our life” while not neglecting our calling and commission of works and evangelism?

  9. SFDBWV says:

    I don’t want to leave everyone with the impression it is always sad here in my world. Quite to the contrary.

    We laugh a lot…We watch good movies(over and over again), we listen to lots of country music. What we can enjoy we do enjoy. Today even though it’s raining we are going to Burger King, Matt wants a “Steakhouse burger”. We love each other, and tell each other all the time.

    We have the deepest theological discussions and never have conclusion that satisfies us. We wait on God.

    If you ask God and if you look around you, there are plenty of opportunities to serve God. Is there an old person or shut in that you know of? Go visit them, or better yet take them a meal once in a while. Do you know of someone who needs help? Help them. Do you know someone who’s broken hearted? Just go and listen to them. They don’t need preached to they need a sholder to cry on. Give them one.

    Whatever you do, do the best you can at it. Maybe just maybe someone will notice, and notice you are a follower of Jesus Christ.

    You Friend

  10. Mart De Haan says:

    Sorry about the deleted post early this a.m., I was trying to describe the balance of doing ministry in a business-like way. But then– while working in the yard– I realized that, because of the difficult economic times we are in, and because of several things I didn’t say, my point could be misunderstood or misleading. So pulled it off for now. Will work a bit more on it later today and see if I think it is worth posting…

  11. poohpity says:

    I feel like business and ministry at times can be an oxymoron. Is there a balance somewhere? That is one of my issues is when a church is run like a business that to me pushes Christ out. That is just my opinion and opinion are like noses everyone has one LOL. :)

    I had an issue come up yesterday about forgiveness. Our family is going through this cancer test right now and it has started with me thinking about past hurts. Then while not looking or paying attention anger of past problems in our family sprang up within me. Things I had thought I had forgiven. I have to remember I can not change other people and this stress sure does ware me down so my self control is flying out the window. I am praying but again my faith is weak and I am feeling so far away from the Lord right now. I am feeling very ugly right now and untrusting of my family. I want all this to just stop.

  12. aboden says:

    I just read galatians 3:3 before reading “What Matters Now”.

    “Are you so foolish? After beginning with the Spirit, are you now trying to attain your goal by human effort?”

    Being in a continuous state of love/faith/hope/peace/patience/kindness, etc, can seem like a daunting task. Well, probably because it is a daunting task!

    This scripture came at a perfect time for me. I could see what God wanted from me, but felt I didn’t have the capacity to attain those standards. But that’s because I wasn’t putting God in the equation.

    Me = Pretty nice guy with a good head on his shoulders that could act like a Christian on the outside (most of the time) but lack any real change.

    Me + God = love/faith/hope/peace/patience/kindness, etc…

  13. DarleneJoy says:

    macsisson22 – thank you for your comments! It is far too easy to fall into the pattern of separating ministry and faith and testimony from our daily living. You expressed perfectly what I know to be true in my heart and yet what is – for me – a continual struggle and area for growth.
    Thanks be to God…for the grace and strength He gives “day by day, moment by moment.”

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.