Monday, April 14, 2014
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you: I have called you by name: you are Mine!” Isaiah 43:1b (RSV)
On the Outside Looking In
Have you ever felt as though you were on the outside looking in? Maybe there isn’t any acknowledgement of your existence, you just don’t fit in. I’m sure that we all feel that way sometimes. I felt that way, growing up in a blended family. I was out of place with my step cousins at family gatherings. When I was able to visit with my late father’s family, I felt like a true insider. We all had the same laugh, which was annoying to others. It was a great time of fellowship that ended too soon.
I asked my pastor if I might share something from his sermon. He gave me the go ahead:
Who I am in Christ
Because you are in Christ, every one of these statements is true of you.
· I am loved. I. John 3:1
· I am accepted. Ephesians 1:5-6
· I am a child of God. John 1:12
· I am Jesus’ friend. John 15:14
· I am a joint heir with Jesus, sharing His inheritance with Him. Romans 8:17
· I am united with God and one spirit with Him. I. Corinthians 6:17
· I am a temple of God. His spirit and his life live in me. I. Corinthians 6:19
· I am a member of Christ’s body. I. Corinthians 12:27
· I am a Saint. Ephesians 1:1
· I am redeemed and forgiven. Colossians 1:14
· I am complete in Jesus Christ. Colossians 2:10
· I am free from condemnation. Romans 8:1
· I am a new creation because I am in Christ. II. Corinthians 5:17
· I am chosen of God, holy and dearly loved. Colossians 3:12
· I am established, anointed, and sealed by God. II. Corinthians 1:21
· I do not have a spirit of fear, but of love, power, and a sound mind. II. Timothy 1:7
· I am God’s co-worker. II. Corinthians 6:1
· I am seated in heavenly places with Christ. Ephesians 2:6
· I have direct access to God. Ephesians 2:18
· I am chosen to bear fruit. John 15:16
· I am one of God’s living stones, being built up in Christ as a spiritual house. I. Peter 2:5
· I have been given exceedingly great and precious promises by God by which I share His nature. II. Peter 1:4
· I can always know the presence of God because He never leaves me. Hebrews 13:5
· God works in me to help me do the things He wants me to do. Philippians 2:13
· I can ask God for wisdom and He will give me what I need. James 1:5
Posted by Phoenix Christian Preparatory School at 9:10 AM
Monday, March 31, 2014
Moses was chosen by God to lead the Israelites out of Egypt and into Canaan, the Promised Land. While Moses was praised by God on several occasions, we must not forget how reluctant he was at the beginning of his journey (Exodus 3). He lacked self confidence and doubted his abilities to speak (Exodus 4). Additionally, he experienced great struggle and failure during his time as leader. He dealt daily with complaints from the same people he had led out of slavery. During his journey, it appeared as if nothing was ever going to satisfy the masses of Israelites. They were hungry, thirsty, tired, bored, and generally lacked faith (Numbers, Exodus, and Leviticus). Those people had witnessed plagues, miracles and war. The Israelites needed constant reminders about the purpose of their journey and who God was.
As teachers, coaches, staff and administrators, we need constant faith in order to lead these students. The phrase “kids now-a-days!” appears to be a lot less accurate than what we would first believe. The ADULTS in these parables we read about were the ones doing the complaining, taking short cuts, and ultimately, not being accountable. The more we read scripture, we find that Moses, an adult, did his best, and screwed up plenty of times. He was not a perfect man, but he was a SERVANT.
We are all called here to serve at Phoenix Christian. We must do our best to have a servant’s heart and understand that our students are no different from the people Moses led. It is a constant struggle to get these students to do what we want, when we want and how we want. It is our job to motivate and help our students. Students are not different from 10 years ago, 100 years ago, or 1000 years ago. NEITHER ARE THE ADULTS. The technology and accessibility to resources are different, but not the people.
Hear this: God knows each one of your hearts, just as he knew Moses’ heart. Remain steadfast in your goals for Phoenix Christian. Thank you for all of your hard work and dedication. We have 2 months remaining before we reach the “promised land” of summer.
Posted by Phoenix Christian Preparatory School at 9:05 AM
Monday, March 24, 2014
We all remember Dorothy, clutching Toto, clicking her heels and saying,"There's no place like home." Home is the place we hurry to at the end of the day. It's our own corner of the world where we are safe from the storms of life.
At least that's the way it's supposed to be. That's why, as a nation, we grieve together in times of natural disaster when we see people displaced by hurricanes, tornadoes, or floods. We weep over the loss of homes and lives. Many times we give financially or go in person to help to give food, shelter, and much needed comfort.
Why do we care? Because deep within us is the realization that we need a place to call home: a place where we are accepted and loved, a place where we can be comforted and feel secure. God created us with both the desire to have a home and the feeling of incompleteness when its missing. It’s a picture of our relationship with Him-the reality of having a home in Him and the insecurity we feel until we are settled with Him.
The comfort and security we feel each day as we return home, the desire to create a warm atmosphere, the love we feel for our families and friends and our joy in being with them is all a miniature of our real home with our Father and His family, the body of Christ. Remember, we are just passing through our journey on earth. We are seeking a permanent home, an eternal dwelling place. When Jesus returns, we will be truly home-forever. So keep running the race, don’t give up the battle, keep going until you reach the final destination.
Psalm 61:4 "'I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings."
Posted by Phoenix Christian Preparatory School at 9:22 AM
Monday, March 10, 2014
"The really wonderful moments of joy in this world are not the moments of self-satisfaction, but self-forgetfulness. Standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and contemplating your own greatness is pathological. At such moments we are made for a magnificent joy that comes from outside ourselves."
― John Piper, Don't Waste Your Life
John Piper is one of my favorite Christian authors. The above quote stuck with me as I thought of those experiences that I did not matter, where it was not about me; the moment was all about God. The day my son was born, I did not matter; I was totally mesmerized by this gift that God had given me. This perfect little person that He had entrusted to me. The first time I went to Scotland I was surrounded by God's creation. The beautiful countryside and tranquil beaches gave me peace and I did not matter. Sometime these moments last hours and sometimes they are brief. When you catch a glimpse of the sun just before it sets and the sun's orange glow stops all thoughts for just a moment and all you see is the glory of God. It didn't last long, but you did not matter in that moment.
I was recently reminded of how precious these God moments are to me when my friends in Scotland posted about being able to see the Northern Lights. I thought about how amazing that must have been and how they must have faded into a state of utter awe with God. I know that they were not self-satisfied, but in a state of self-forgetfulness. I desire to have more times where I forget about me and take the time to see only God, be engulfed in His glory and captivated by His love.
Posted by Phoenix Christian Preparatory School at 9:24 AM
Monday, March 3, 2014
I pray the meditation of Days of Praise will bless your life like it did mine.
The Importance of Reading
“Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, and to teaching.” (1Timothy 4:13)
In this video age, Christians are in grave danger of forgetting the importance of reading. The word translated “reading” in this verse is the Greek angnosis, a compound word meaning essentially “renew knowledge.” A sermon or lecture is knowledge heard, an educational film or video is knowledge seen; but reading is knowledge that can be read, rehearsed, reviewed, and renewed again and again, until fully and securely learned. In fact, it is necessary for students to take notes, even when hearing a sermon or seeing a film, if they expect to retain any knowledge received by such a means.
The importance of reading is also pointed out by the verb used in the verse. “Give attendance” means, literally, “continue steadfastly.” Reading and studying the Scriptures are especially necessary for a fruitful Christian ministry. To do this requires steadfast continuance in the study, not only of the Bible, but also of other sound literature as well. A truly effective and influential Christian is an informed Christian, armed with facts and sound counsel, prepared and capable both in his own professional field of practice and in his spiritual service as a Christian witness. The conscientious Christian must never cease to study and to grow in grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18). Henry M. Morris, Ph.D. Days of Praise, February 13, 2014.
Posted by Phoenix Christian Preparatory School at 7:56 AM