Sunday, July 12, 2015

Don't Judge a Movie by It's Ratings :)

So, there has been a lot of talk about God in the news lately, some good, but mostly bad...well at least reflecting God poorly due to people who choose to be loud, harsh and unkind. I am sure most of the "loud" people that call themselves "Christians" mean well, but reality is they come across as arrogant, hypocritical, and judgmental.

Tonight, I watched a movie that I've been meaning to watch for some time now, and just hadn't had the time. Well, tonight I had time and I am so glad that I watched it. The movie is God's Not Dead! It was phenomenal. I know that it received horrible ratings, but over the years, I've learned not to let ratings affect me because I almost always disagree with them anyway. :)

I think part of what I loved about this movie is that the young man who challenged his philosophy professor was humble and loving throughout the whole "trial" of proving that God is not dead. I know that not all of you have watched this movie, so I won't spoil it for you in case you'd like to see it, but man, if we could all walk with the humility and conviction this young man showed, despite the push back he received from everyone around him, I believe the world would be a better place.

I am always so convicted when I see movies like this or hear stories of a similar sort. I hope that it's no secret that I wholeheartedly believe in Jesus. He is my Lord and Savior, however I fail every day at living out the kind of love that I'm called to have, but I think that's the point. I am not capable of this kind of love on my own, if I was...there would be no need for Jesus in my life. Every morning that I wake up I thank the Lord for another day of life and ask that He would guide my steps through each moment.

If I'm being honest, before becoming a mom, I'd have told you that I thought I had things pretty put together. I didn't really see my "whole" self; I only saw what I wanted to see and I ignored the rest because it "wasn't that bad." What I had failed to see is that my biggest sin was my pride. Well, God has definitely used my children to humble me :) I am so thankful that I have children that notice every little detail and oh so innocently point out my flaws. They are my daily reminder of how much I need Jesus, not just daily, but minute by minute.

Parenting is hard! Can I get an AMEN?!? Don't get me wrong, it's amazing being a mom, especially to my two beautiful children that I couldn't imagine life without, but it's also hard. I have been challenged in ways that I never thought possible. I have also learned a new meaning for unconditional love and have received a glimpse into how God feels about us, His beloved children.

Anyway, let me get back to my reason for this post. God's Not Dead stirred in me a desire to be more bold and fearless in my faith. I feel like it's easy to be bold with people I don't know, but for some reason it's harder with those that I hold near and dear to me, when in fact those should be the people I am most open with. So, I decided to write this post while I was feeling inspired and courageous.

If you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, you've seen that I've been posting scripture that has been speaking to me during my morning quiet times. I am still stuck on on one of the most common passages of scripture that most people know and could probably quote from memory: 1 Corinthians 13....the Love passage. It's so easy to just rattle off these verses, but to live them out is another story:

1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 
2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. 
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 
5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 
10 but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 
11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 
12Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face.Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 

13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Living a life of love is truly a choice and it's one I have to make on a daily basis...well if I'm being honest, even more often than that...second by second. It's so easy for me to be selfish and self righteous and think that everything has to be my way. It takes effort and self control to  choose to be patient. It is a choice to keep no record of wrongs. I could keep going, but I think you get where I'm going with this. Every day we are given the ability to prove that God is not dead through our actions and our choices. How do I treat the waitress when I'm at lunch? How do I talk do the clerk checking me out at the super market? When I'm on the phone with a customer service representative for any of the numerous companies out there, how do I speak to the person on the other end? When I am talking to my child (no matter the situation) am I building them up in love or tearing them down with anger? When I am talking to my husband am I respectful and humble or am I proud and stubborn? Do I live like Jesus is alive inside of me? Do I live a life changed by the love and sacrifice so freely given or do I simply talk the talk, but not walk the walk? These are all questions that I have been pondering lately, maybe you have too?

While I could keep going on this topic since it's one that has been on my heart a lot, I will leave you with this scripture that keeps popping up in my quiet times and has been shared by friends with me: "Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us." (Romans 12:3 NLT) This challenges me every time I read it!

And remember: God's NOT Dead!!!!!!

1 comment:

Jase and Melissa said...

Thanks for your strong conviction in the faith Stephanie! It's an encouragement!