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Who’s Your One?

Discipleship. What does it even mean?

19 Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. 20 Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:19-20 (NLT)

The church I attend is called Mission Church. God’s Message. Our Mission. I started attending Mission in February of 2020 but then COVID hit and we watched online for awhile until we were able to meet again with limitations.

I recently made a decision to not let my 77 year old mother go until she was vaccinated. So we’ve been watching the sermons online. Our pastor, Josh, is such a great preacher. Today’s sermon was on discipleship. Actually, the verses above is our mission. To reach and teach others to become disciples.

What is Discipleship?

Discipleship is about following Christ and making new disciples. It’s about being invested in following the Great Commission that Jesus set before us. We as Christians are called to make more disciples, to build relationships with others and teach them the Word of God  and what it says.

Discipleship is about growing in the Lord and having a close relationship with Him all the while teaching others how to have the same type of relationship.

Discipleship is about carrying on the ministry of Jesus Christ.

The Cost of Discipleship

Jesus tells us plainly that by following Him we will meet opposition. We will be hated. Laughed at. Ridiculed. Mocked.

Following Jesus by making disciples isn’t difficult to understand, but it can be very costly. By sharing His teachings, we are often rejected along with His message.

Francis Chan, “Muliply: Disciples Making Disciples”

I am reading a book called Above All by J.D Greear. He is the pastor of The Summit Church in Raleigh-Durham, NC. In Chapter 3, titled Gospel Mission, he says this, “Disciple making is, after all, the key component of Jesus’ Great Commission and it ought to be the standard by which we judge every ministry in the church.”

The Great Commission is not merely to go to the ends of the earth preaching the Gospel…..but to make disciples—to build people like themselves who were so constrained by the commission of Christ that they not only followed his way but led others to as well.

Robert Coleman, “The Master Plan of Evangelism.

Greear tells us that “making disciples is the primary calling of the church. Our Mission. Our Purpose.”

“Discipleship simply means doing the everyday stuff of your life with other people while walking toward Jesus, step by step, day by day, meal by meal, conversation by conversation.”

Another quote by Greear really spoke to me. “Think about the burdens that you are carrying right now. How many of them are actually the burdens of others?”

Wow. It’s eye opening. How many of us are living our lives without ever telling a soul about Jesus. How many of us are ignoring the hurting and the lost? Do we even care?

Or are we too involved with ourselves? Discipleship means stepping out of our comfort zone and reaching others.

Will it be hard at first? Absolutely. Will it be worth it? Totally.

At the end of the chapter Greear mentions that at his church the congregation was asked to identify ONE person they could pray for and seek to bring to Christ over the year.

Just ONE.

“Who’s your one?”

Posted in christian living, christianity

Are You All In?

“These people honor me with their lips but their hearts are far from me.”

Mark 7:6b

“No one is so miserable as the poor person who maintains the appearance of wealth.” Charles Spurgeon

I am going to be vulnerable with you all for a moment. Sometimes I struggle with whether or not I’m being hypocritical when I write blog posts about faith in the Lord or when I post things on my IG.

Do my actions in the real world reflect my actions online? I’ve been doing some digging on this subject and decided to write about it.

Definition of a hypocrite:

 1: a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion.
2: a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings

Question: Have you ever felt like sometimes you could be a hypocrite when it comes to your relationship with the Lord?

I have felt like that once or twice. I get to thinking about this blog and things I post on social media and wonder if I’m being a hypocrite sometimes. Do my actions outside my blogging world and my social media world show that I am a follower of Christ?

Basically, do I practice what I preach? (or blog/post) Do I reflect Jesus when I come face to face with unbelievers. Or do I try to “fit in” with them? Do I have one foot in, one foot out? We can’t ride the fence though. We are either all in or all out. Otherwise, when we face Jesus…and we all will…what is He going to say to you? Will He tell you “Well done my good and faithful servant? Or will He tell you, “Depart from me, I never knew you.”

That passage of Scripture, found in Matthew 7:21-23 has always scared me a little. It makes one truly think about their standing with the Lord. One can’t be a Christian AND a hypocrite. It’s an oxymoron.

I found this website called BibleReasons.com where you can look up any subject and it pulls Scripture related to that subject. This is what I found regarding hypocrisy:

“Are there religious hypocrites out there who try to appear holy and smarter than everyone else but are filled with hypocrisy and wickedness. Of course, but there are also people who seek to do God’s will above everything else. Sometimes people are just immature believers.”

“Hypocrites talk about Jesus, pray etc…but their hearts are not cooperating. Many people know the Bible front and back but they are not living the life that they recite to others.”

This quote below is how I finally realized that my fears of hypocrisy are not real. After I read it I felt confident that I am not a hypocrite. Another quote I came across says “the fact that you’re wrestling with doubts and fears about your standing with God leads us to think that you can’t be guilty of rejecting Christ. If you were, you wouldn’t be worried about it” Awhile back I struggled with the thought that I had rejected Christ, that I had committed the unforgivable sin.

Hypocrites may have remorse over their sins but they never change. There is a difference between worldly and godly sorrow. Godly sorrow leads to repentance.. With worldly sorrow you are only sad that you got caught.

BibleReasons.com

I was talking to a fellow blogger about my feelings of hypocrisy and she was very helpful. She suggested that what I could be was experiencing condemnation. All Christians go through it. We realize and see where we fall short. We realize our need for a Savior. It’s a good reminder of why we need to cling to Christ and His Word.

There are a lot of people in the world today who claim to be Christians yet their lives do not reflect Jesus. They are “Christian” in name only. They don’t read their Bible, they attend church two times a year (Christmas and Easter), their prayer life is non-existent. It’s these very people who we need to be witnessing to. We need to be concerned with their eternal future! Because one day the Lord Jesus IS coming back and if you’re not right with the Lord, you will hear these words, “Depart from me, I never knew you.” (shudders)

Christian in Name Only, also called a cultural Christian nominal Christian or more often, a liberal Christian, is someone who professes to be a Christian in public but has a considerable lack of knowledge about the basic tenets of one’s professed faith, often “knowing” it only from what is half-remembered from Sunday school or from pop-cultural osmosis. To put it another way, a Christian in name only is someone who “would call himself a Christian, or be so regarded by others, but who has no authentic commitment to Christ based on personal faith.”

https://www.conservapedia.com/Christian_In_Name_Only


The world says that they don’t go to church or believe in God because all Christians are hypocrites. No, all Christians are sinners, just like the world. “The church is a hospital for sinners. Romans 3:23 tells us that “we have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

Some more quotes I found to be useful:

  1. Don’t let your lips and your lives preach two different messages.
  2. Your most powerful testimony is how you treat others after the church service is over.
    And this last quote really got to me…..
  3. What a heartbreak it would be to live an “almost” Christian life then “almost” get into Heaven.

(I do believe I’m going to have to make this into two blog posts. There is so much to learn about hypocrisy and “almost Christians”.)

I’m going all in
Head first to the deep end
I hear You calling
And this time the fear won’t win
I’m going, I’m going all in
I’m all in, I’m all in All in
I’m all in, I’m all in
I believe that one day I will see Your kingdom come And I wanna hear You say, “Welcome home My child, well done”
So, I step to the edge and I take a deep breath

Matthew West, All In

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What God Has Been Teaching Me Lately

I am not the most patient person, not gonna lie. However, lately I seem to be getting better at it.

This weight loss journey is going to take some time. And I have to remember that. This weight didn’t come on overnight (though it feels like it, lol) and it’s not going to come off overnight. (though I wish it would!) I can’t get discouraged. I must be patient. (I’m learning, I’m learning!)

And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.

Galatians 6:9 (ESV)

I am 2lbs lighter today! It’s a start! And as I continue to do what is good for my body and really focus, I can and I WILL lose this weight. And who is on my side? Christ, of course! He knows that I am going to struggle a little harder since my meds cause weight gain. (not using that as an excuse though) And the Lord is going to be on my side, cheering me on and never letting me go.

 That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!  So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

2 Corinthians 4:16-19

Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and that the Master you are serving is Christ.

Colossians 3:23-24 (NLT)

It’s all about perseverance. I can’t get discouraged when the scale reading is not what I was expecting. I’ll have those days, I know this. I just move on to the next day and start over. This weight will come off. I’m determined. Like Lysa Terkeurst says in Made to Crave, “I have to see the purpose of my struggle as something more than wearing smaller sizes and getting compliments from others…it has to be about something more than me.” Yes it does. And God is the answer for it. Lysa also mentions that “the more dependent we become on God’s strength, the less enamored we are with other choices.”

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Quotes from Made to Crave

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?….therefore honor God with your body

1 Corinthians 6:19

The ultimate goal of this journey isn’t about making me a smaller sized person but rather making me crave Jesus and His truths as the ultimate filler of my heart.

Lysa Terkeurst

As I’ve come to realize that I truly need to lose weight, I am reminded of a quote: “I didn’t put the weight on overnight and I won’t lose it overnight. This is going to be a long journey to lose the amount of weight I’ve decided on.

I’m not on a diet. I’m on a journey with Jesus to learn the fine art of self discipline for the purpose of holiness.

Lysa Terkeurst

My self discipline is pretty much non existent when it comes to food. I have no willpower when it comes to certain foods, including chocolate. Chocolate is my weakness. According to Dr. Floyd Chilton, “Willpower alone is not enough to bring about this change. Start by realizing that you cannot do this alone.”
I have indeed realized I cannot do this on my own. Only Christ can help me lose this weight.

I have to see the purpose of my struggle as something more than wearing smaller sizes and getting compliments from others…it has to be something more than me.

Lysa Terkeurst

It shouldn’t be just to look good and get compliments from others.

The struggle to say NO may be painful in the moment but it is working out something magnificent within us.

Lysa Terkeurst

Yes I want to lose weight. But this journey is so much more than just that. It really is about learning to tell myself NO and learning to make wiser choices daily.

Lysa Terkeurst

God doesn’t just command us to have a healthy perspective on food, He also provides the help to achieve it.

Lysa Terkeurst

I can’t make this journey with Christ by my side, encouraging me to just keep going. When I struggle (and I know there will be a LOT of struggling in the very beginning, lol) He’s there. When I fall, He picks me up. Without Him, I honestly believe I would just keep failing in my attempts to lose this weight.

Don’t buy into what the scale says or doesn’t say. Trust the effort you are putting into getting healthy. And keep going!

Lysa Terkeurst.

That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

This was the 2nd or 3rd time I’ve read this book but it just didn’t click with me. Now that I have read it with more focus, more determination…I’m ready to go. 🙂

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Romans 12:2

 And so, dear brothers and sisters,[a] I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.[b]2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

Romans 12:1-2

I have recently started posting Verse of the Day on my IG page. (Check it out, Leigh Stone (@leighs1983) •

Today’s verse is a verse that I feel is beneficial to read while I begin my weight loss journey. In these two verses, I am reminded that my body is a temple and I should be taking care of it. The Lord also reminds me that I need to NOT copy or compare myself to others. I must change the way I think.

Satan is going to try his level best to get me to feel discouraged when I weigh my self and discover it’s not coming down like I would like it to. I know I’ll have my days where the struggle is truly real but I can’t let that get to me. I must rely on the Lord and spend time in prayer.

Please pray for me as I embark on this journey to lose weight. I know I’ve asked in the past but I can feel that this time is going to stick because I’ve got the Lord on my side and He will remind me of his promises to always be there with me.

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3 Things God Is Teaching Me In Singleness — Girls Grace & Truth

Singleness. A word that can have a lot of connotations associated with it–both positive and negative. I’ll be honest: my young adulthood looks a bit different than I had hoped or anticipated. I’ve hit that age where my friends and peers are getting into relationships, engaged, and married. It’s super exciting and fun to celebrate […]

3 Things God Is Teaching Me In Singleness — Girls Grace & Truth
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Made To Crave

I stepped onto the scale the other day and nearly lost it when I saw my results. There’s no way! It’s lying. I can’t weigh that much! But as I stepped off the scale, I was forced to face reality. Yes, I indeed weighed this much and it is no one’s fault but my own. (and the 4 meds I take that cause weight gain.)

I guess the last time I read “Made to Crave” I wasn’t paying attention. Well, it’s to reread it again! This time I’ll pay closer attention and will take notes.

Poor food choices are sabotaging my body, my mental energy and even my spirit. Food has become like a drug.

Lysa Terkeurst

I obviously wasn’t motivated to lose the weight the first time around. But something is different this time. That number I saw on the scale has really scared me. Like, really. I’m at risk several health issues, including diabetes (which runs in the family), heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc.
I need to take a lot better care of myself. This time, I’m including God. He alone is the only One who can help me truly feel good about myself.

I didn’t include God the first time. Oh, I thought I had. I read the book, didn’t I? I prayed, right? But my heart wasn’t truly in it now that I’ve had time to think about it.

I’m addicted. Sugar is my drug of choice, so to speak. I just “have” to have chocolate. I just “have” to have sweets. Brownies, cookies, you name it. I’m attracted to sweets. Oh and soda. That’s another downfall of mine. Soda. I’m a Coke kind of girl, I love it. I have recently switched to Coke Zero, no sugar, no calories. But the one thing I need to start doing? Drinking water. Lots and lots of water. Problem is I can’t seem to drink a lot. I make excuses for why I don’t drink water like I should. “Oh, I can’t eat pizza and drink water along with it. It just doesn’t taste good. I “need” that glorious taste of soda.

We want the results but have no desire to put in the work required.

Lysa Terkeurst

Ain’t that the truth? We want to look good, we want to feel good when around others who can stuff their faces and not gain a pound. (Seriously, that isn’t fair! lol) We have this tendency to compare ourselves to others but we have to stop doing that. It’s only going to make us feel worse. We have to have the desire to lose the weight, without comparing ourselves to others.

Nothing changes until we make the choice to redirect our misguided cravings to the only One capable of satisfying them.

Lysa Terkeurst

I’m on chapter 8 of the book and this time I’m getting so much more than I did the last time. And why? Because I’m including God in it this time. I was wanting to lose weight just so I looked good. But I’ve got to change that mindset and realize that God loves me, weight and all. He knows I want to lose the weight and He’s trying to tell me that with His help I can overcome my struggles.

Yes, I want to lose weight. But this journey is so much more than just that. It really is about learning to tell myself NO and learning to make wiser choices daily

Lysa Terkeurst

I have to see the purpose of my struggle as something more than wearing smaller sizes and getting compliments from others…it has to be about something more than me.

Lysa Terkeurst

Another thing that is different this time is that I have an accountability partner. She would like to lose weight as well and so we are going to check in with each other 1-2 times a week and also pray for one another that we would stay focused on losing the amount of weight we’ve decided on.

Galatians 6:9 tells us this: Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Posted in christian living

We Have a Responsibility

Now, son of man, I am making you a watchman for the people of Israel. Therefore listen to what I say and warn them for me. If I announce that some wicked people are sure to die and you fail to tell them to change their ways then they will die in their sins and I will hold you responsible for their deaths. But if you warn them to repent and they don’t repent they will die in their sins but you will have saved themselves.

Ezekiel 33:7-9

It is our duty to tell others about Christ. It is our responsibility. As followers of Christ we are called to present the Gospel to the lost. I came across a quote by Timothy Simpson the other day, “The Great Commission is hindered when the Great Commandment is disregarded” and it really got me to thinking. We owe it to the person who is a lost sinner just like we were before Christ. We owe it to their eternal future. We are called to love them, to not want to see them die without Christ.

I needed shelter, I was an orphan
Now You call me a citizen of Heaven

When I was broken, You were my healing.
Now your love is the air that I’m breathing.
I have a future, my eyes are open.

Passion (featuring Kristian Stanfill)

What are we doing with our time? Are we spending it on ourselves? Are we ignoring God’s plea to reach out to those who don’t know the Lord? If I’m being honest I’m spending way too much time on myself and not enough time witnessing.

My pastor recently preached a sermon series on the story of Jonah. If you’re not familiar with the story, Jonah was called to go preach to the wicked living in Nineveh. Jonah was like, “Nope, nope, nope. Not doing that!” Jonah knew how wicked they were and fled in the opposite direction to Joppa where he discovered a ship heading towards Tarshish. He hopped on board hoping to escape the Lord. “But the Lord hurled a powerful wind over the sea, causing a violent storm that threatened to break the ship apart. Fearing for their lives, the desperate sailors shouted to their gods for help and threw the cargo overboard to lighten the ship. But all this time Jonah was sound asleep down in the hold. So the captain went down after him. How can you sleep at a time like this? he shouted. “Get up and pray to your god. Maybe he will pay attention to us and spare our lives. (Jonah 1:4-6, NLT)

So the sailors cast lots to try to figure out which god caused the terrible storm. Jonah was honest with them and told them to throw him into the sea. Once this happened the storm stopped at once! And the Lord caused a “great fish” to swallow Jonah. Jonah was in the belly of the whale for 3 days and cried out to the Lord and the Lord had the whale spit him out on dry land.

Finally, the Lord once again told Jonah to head to Nineveh and this time Jonah obeyed. He headed to Nineveh and warned the city that in “forty days from now Nineveh will be destroyed.” (Jonah 3:4b) Nineveh’s king heard Jonah and announced to the crowd “People and animals alike must wear garments of mourning and everyone must pray earnestly to God. They must turn from their evil ways and stop all their violence” (Jonah 3:8)

And so when God “saw what they had done and how they had put a stop to their evil ways, he changed his mind and did not carry out the destruction he had threatened.” (Jonah 3:10)

How many times is God going to ask us to reach out to the lost? How many times are we going to run the other way?

We must do better. We must love them so much that we can’t bear it if they were to die without knowing the Lord, spending an eternity in hell.

We must love. We must care. We must obey the Lord.

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Unplug!

Getting distracted is so easy. Just hand me my phone and instantly I’m on Facebook or Instagram….before I know it, a huge amount of time has flown by and I am left wondering how. Surely I wasn’t distracted THAT long, right?

Lately I’ve been distracted from turning to Jesus. I get so caught up in technology that I forget what’s really important. I have made an idol and placed it in front of Jesus. I’ve bumped Jesus to number 2, or 3 or even 4 instead of #1 in my life.

It’s time to check in with Jesus. It’s time to push all the other things away. They don’t matter. Jesus matters. He’s all we need and yet we forget that. We allow the material things to take His place in our hearts and in our lives.

I’m currently reading a book by Craig Groeschel called “#Struggles: Following Jesus in a Selfie-Centered World.”

Synopsis:

We all love the benefits of technology and social media, but even with the incredible upsides, many of us suspect there are unintended negative consequences that are beyond our control. We’ve lost perspective, even perhaps ourselves.

In this timely and life-changing new book, New York Times bestselling author and pastor of LifeChurch.tv Craig Groeschel encourages readers who are hungry to regain control over their lives and put Christ first again. He walks them through biblical values that all Christ followers know are essential, but are even more important for our maxed out, selfie-centered world

The more you compare, the less satisfied you are. The more we interact online, the more we crave face to face intimacy, but the harder it is to find. The more filtered our lives become, the more challenging it is to be authentic. The more information about the pain in the world we’re exposed to the more difficult it is to care.

It’s time to refresh and rediscover our understanding of the biblical principles that life with Christ brings: contentment, intimacy, authenticity, compassion, rest and more. Groeschel taps in to some of the most up-to-date studies on the effects of social media on our emotions and our friendships. And he offers real-life examples of how we struggle with social media, how it masks our real struggles, and how we can reclaim a Christ-centered life.

With helpful appendices like the 10 Commandments of Using Social Media to Strengthen Your Faith, and Creating Safeguards for Your Digital Devices, you’ll find #Struggles to be just the guide to bring balance and real-life engagement to your everyday life.

Technology is not a bad thing in and of itself. There’s nothing wrong with checking in on social media. We just can’t allow it to consume us.

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else and live righteously and he will give you everything you need.”

Matthew 6:33 (NLT)

Those who cling to worthless idols turn away from God’s love for them.

Jonah 2:8