Tuesday, July 22, 2014

God's Not Dead by Paula Roten

...and all the time, God is good!

Yes, I saw the movie God's Not Dead at church Sunday night. I had already seen it, but I think I got more out of it this time than the first time. 

I was overwhelmed with the fact that GOD LOVES PEOPLE AND WILL PURPOSELY PURSUE THEM.

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

I was reminded by Josh, the college freshman in the film, that God will take me out of my comfort zone and ask me to make a stand for Him...but I have the choice of whether or not to do it. 

"Whoever acknowledges me before men, I will also acknowledge him before my Father in heaven. But whoever disowns me before men, I will disown him before my Father in heaven." Matthew 10:32-33

Mina reminded me that even as Christians, we sometimes look for love and acceptance in all the wrong places. We want people to meet the deepest needs of our lives instead of God. 

Pastor Dave showed me a mistaken view I sometimes have. The grass often looks greener on the other side. At times, I romanticize someone else's Christian life and their opportunities to serve the Lord. If I would only open my eyes and have a willing heart, I would see the many ways God wants me to serve Him right where I am, at whatever stage of life I'm in.  

Amy, the young woman who discovered she was dying from cancer, reinforced the concept that the fairy tale ending of "...and they lived happily ever after" is not always true in this world. There is disease and pain and suffering on this earth. But we can be assured that there will be no more tears in heaven. Jesus will take all that away.

"In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." Revelation 21:4

And Professor Radisson. So much to say about him. I don't want to be like him and let circumstances dictate what I think about God: My circumstances are awful; therefore, God must not love me. My circumstances are awful; therefore, I will hate God because after all, He could have changed the way things turned out. 

I want to start with God and look at my circumstances through the lens of God's character: 

"The Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion, and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished." Exodus 34:6

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

God is good; therefore, whatever comes into my life is for my good and God's glory...even if I can't figure it out. (Merciful, Gracious Father, please help me to always remember this!)

Didn't you want the movie to end differently? (I won't be a total spoiler here just in case you haven't seen the movie yet.) But I came away from the movie with even more of a conviction that I need to live for Jesus NOW. 

I need to stop using excuses: 
"I'm too busy and don't have time." 
"I'm just a.........(teenager, housewife, senior citizen, shut-in, person with no skills and no education - you fill in the blank)"
"I'm too intellectual."
"I'm young. I have plenty of time."
"I'm building my career. I'll do it later."
"Raising kids is a full time job!"

I need to look for opportunities to share Jesus and and serve Him in my everyday life.

Only one life, 'twill soon be past, 
Only what's done for Christ will last.
~ C. T. Studd

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