Does Jesus Need To Tell Us To Be Quiet?

Does Jesus need to tell us to be quiet?

I have taken a challenge to read the New Testament in 30 days. It requires that I read 8 chapters a day. This has been a challenge for sure but has also helped to connect some ideas from different areas of the New Testament. Especially in the Gospels.

As I read through the book of Mark I keep coming across a statement that Jesus makes after performing miracles. Here is one example:

Mark 7:36 “And Jesus charged them to tell no one. But the more he charged them, the more zealously they proclaimed it.” Other instances of this statement are Mark 5:43; 1:44.

I have read these statement by Jesus many times before and was always puzzled by them.  I had always understood this to mean that “His hour had not yet come” (John 2:4 Meaning it was not time for it to be revealed that He is the Messiah) and therefore they were not allowed to speak of Him yet. I believe that is true. But what I find so interesting is the fact that in Mark 7 they completely disobeyed him. The more he asked them to be quiet the more they told the news of what he has done.

Contrast that with the commandment that Christian’s have today, to “Go and make disciples” (Matthew 28:19). So many Christian’s today read that command and then do nothing with it. They tell no one about the greatness of God. They tell no one of the power of Jesus. They keep silent.

So does Jesus need to tell us to be quiet to make us speak? I don’t believe so. I believe the difference is in the encounter. In Mark 7 and 5 and 1 the ones who the miracles were performed for and those who saw it had a real encounter with the living God. Their excitement could not be contained.

I believe for Christian’s today we remain silent because we have not had an encounter with Jesus. Nothing has happened for the Christian that is worth speaking of. So we remain silent.

So it is not that Jesus needs to tell us to be quiet. It is that we need to truly encounter the living God. How do we encourage that? How do we help churched people meet with the living God?

I do not have answers to these questions.  It most certainly begins with prayer and then flows from there.

What do you believe?

The Faith To Ask. The Faith To Act. [Sermon]

A sermon from 2 Kings 2:19-22 19

“Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Behold now, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees; but the water is bad and the land [h]is unfruitful.” 20 He said, “Bring me a new jar, and put salt in it.” So they brought it to him. 21 He went out to the spring of water and threw salt in it and said, “Thus says the Lord, ‘I have purified these waters; there shall not be from there death or unfruitfulness any longer.’” 22 So the waters have been purified to this day, according to the word of Elisha which he spoke.”

A Step Past Hard

What if you went a step past hard in everything?

Your morning run. You say one mile will be hard. Go one mile and one step.

Your work. You have a long list to do. It looks hard. Do the list and one more thing.

Eating Right. You believe it is hard to avoid the ice cream. So avoid the ice cream and eat some broccoli.

Each of these are examples of a step past hard. If you go an extra step everyday on your run then pretty soon you will be going two miles.

If you avoid ice cream long enough and eat enough broccoli then you will be healthy. Well, healthier than you were before.

My point is, anything worth doing is on the other side of hard.

So step past hard every day and you will see some amazing things happen in your life.

I once thought about writing a book called A Step Past Hard. Two hundred pages of how to step past hard. But, in all honesty, that would be a waste of trees. You have everything here you need to reach your next goal.

  1. Define what hard is in respect to that goal.
  2. Go one step past hard.
  3. Repeat Every Day
  4. Reach the goal and then set the next one.

Have a great day as you step through hard.

No Less Complete

For the last 18 months I have experienced a real darkening of the mind and spirit. A hopelessness that I cannot explain. It has left me with questions like, “Why am I here?” “What is my purpose?” What is all this for?”

These are questions that everyone struggles with from time to time I am sure. But I have been unable to shake these thoughts.  The conversation seems to always be “God what is all this for?”

As I walked this morning I decided to change my approach. Instead of identifying all the terrible things in life and in the world I decided to just thank God.

To thank God for Life. To thank God for family. To thank God for the earth to inhabit. To thank God for air to breath. In short,  just to be thankful.

The Lord spoke in that moment. He showed me that if he had not created the earth, or humanity, or animals, or plants, or the moon, or the stars, or the universe He would be no less complete.  He does not need his creation to make Himself whole.

As I thanked God and He spoke to me I realized He is the instigator in the relationship. He started all this and therefore He is the focus of life, and thanks, and praise, and honor. I did nothing and I can do nothing to make Him more. I can do nothing to make myself more appealing in His eyes.

He is complete in and of Himself and in order for me to be complete I must find that completeness and wholeness in Him!

 

 

Jesus Friend Of Sinners – The Wrong Pronouns

13 Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.

15 While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. 16 When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

17 On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Mark 2:13-17

How many times have you read this verse? Me? I’ve it a hundred times or more. Every time I read the verse I always use the pronoun THEM.  “Jesus ate with them (the sinners) and so should we.” “Jesus went them (the sinners) and so should we.” “Our mission is to reach them with the Gospel.”

Yesterday I had an eye opening experience. Reading this passage with the pronoun THEM or THEY really created an air of elitism.  I am better than them. I am so good in fact that Jesus doesn’t have to eat with me. Wait? That is where my eyes were opened. The THEM is actually ME. Jesus came to ME, the sinner.

If he didn’t come to me then I have no hope. If I have no hope of dining with Jesus then I have a greater problem.

Jesus, friend of sinners. Friend to you and friend to me.

Even though I am not tax collector I am a sinner (Probably much worse than being a tax collector). Jesus came to dine with me. Jesus came to share himself with me. He came to share himself with you too.

This eye opening experience came to me when I was reading a post be Ann Voskamp yesterday. In this post she talks about her summer of heart failure. It is a great story. Sad, difficult, but great. I recommend you read it. You will probably cry (fair warning).

Check it out here. When you Go into Heart Failure and it Turns out to be a Metaphor for All The Things Right Now

 

Social Media is Dumb Right Now

I have two reasons to say that social media is dumb right now. Maybe it has always been dumb and I am just now realizing it. (I guess that makes me dumb then)

  1. The Over-users.
  2. The Under-Users.

The over-users blow everybody up with everything that they read. (Did you spend all day on social media?) The share button should be used very sparingly. I find it hard to believe that every article that gets shared is really that important. My suggestion, share button limits. One per day and 25 per month. That’s all you get. (I know I know it will never happen)

The other part of that is that I think a person should only have one post per day. No more. No less? Use a social site to publish the most important thing you want to say in any given day. I would be willing to use it more if I could see everyone’s one important thought/insight/memory.

Here’s to a new social media site. “One a Day”. (Isn’t that already a vitamin) It will be healthier.

I think the under-users really bug me more. Most often they are referred to as lurkers. The under-users are those that have accounts, but never share anything. Maybe once or twice per year. So yeah, never. They just log on to see what everyone else is up to. (They would probably have more fun if they just watched a movie.) I liken this behavior to a person that walks the neighborhood at night a peeks in everyone’s window to see what is going on. (“Wow Richard, that’s harsh!”) I don’t think it is. A social network is meant to be social meaning all who are in should be in. Tell us about your day. (Keep it to only one per day though please.) We want to hear from you.

For that reason on the social network I would create (One A Day: The Healthy Way to Socialize on The Web) I would require one post per day or five per week at least. That would encourage everyone to get involved or not. That means that if you don’t keep up with your one a day posts then you are out for a while. (Harsh again) Ahh I guess we could let them back in at some point. I don’t know. I’m just thinking out loud here.

Anyways (It’s a word! I Googled it.), I am beginning to see some negative effects of social media in my own life and in the life of my family. These are just a few of the problems I consider.

I do believe there is a place for social media and it can be a positive place but I also believe we could all stand to consider the consequences of our actions just a little more.

Anyways (Google it.). See ya later.

 

Screenplay Visibility – Get Your Story Out There

There are so many great writers out there trying to have their stories told on the big screen but due to market conditions and a variety of stories and other factors most of these writers never have their works see the light of day.

So they go find a “real job” and waste their days away working for something that is not their dream. This shouldn’t be that way. So we wanted to give these writers another way to have their stories told. Another way to build an audience. Another way to earn some income.

That ways comes in the form of Same Shirt Audio. Same Shirt Audio produces unproduced,  unoptioned screenplays into fully produced audio books. By fully produced I mean that the books have voice actors for each character, a full soundtrack, musical scores and so much more to make these stories come alive.

So if you are a screenwriter or know a screenwriter let them know about our company. We would love to help them produce their screenplay as an audio book.

You can find out more information at Same Shirt Audio

You can submit your screenplays here >>>> Submit Your Screenplay

We look forward to telling some great stories.

Hear your story. build Your Audience.