"There's no such thing as a solitary Christian."

John Wesley, founder of the Methodist Church

Saturday, August 27, 2016

My Call to Action

People get scared when someone says, "The Lord spoke to me!" It's an understandable thing to get afraid of, but the Lord talks to people in mysterious ways. I always thought that the word "calling" was just a metaphor meaning that you prayed about stuff and then finally understood what they are supposed to do with their lives. Of course I believed in God at this point, but I always thought that God was just there to help you make decisions, in recent days I have come to understand that this assumption of mine was very much wrong. When someone speaks of their conversation with the Lord, some people get sad, and others get frustrated. They want to know why the Lord won't talk to them, but the Lord is wondering at the same time why we won't listen. You have to be able to recognize when the Lord is trying to telling you something, and I am going to give you my own personal experience with this. Don't worry, I'm not saying that at my young age I have already found my calling, and people at thirty haven't, but I really feel like the Lord has already started talking to me, and I am going to listen.
**I would like to start this by saying that while this website, my biblical posts on Twitter and Instagram, and my talking about religion in everything I do is one of the most important things to me. But this story is not about this, but it does fall under always talking about it.**

In recent weeks, the world around me has been falling apart, not my own personal world, but THE world. My mother tells me that some things that happen will be ingrained in your head forever, it's kind of like a traumatic experience, but not exactly. One of these ingrained images in my mind was the little boy rescued after the bombing in Aleppo, Syria. I get sad when I think of this, but then I get angry that anyone would do this. The other ingrained image is actually a story, it's about a wedding the happened near the Turkey-Syria border, on the Turkish side. A young boy, probably of age fourteen was sent to ISIS by his parents and bombs were strapped around his sides. He sneaked into this wedding, and was blown up. This little boy, (not really little, but you know what I mean), blew himself up and killed 50 other people. Just think about what he could have done with his life if he had known Jesus.

Now, these stories are sad, and they pulled on my heart. I know that's just a metaphor when people are sad, "Oh, that story just pulls on my heartstrings!" No, that is not what's going on, to me, these stories are signs. God is reaching into me, and pulling at my heart and telling me to do something. Because of my age, I'm being told that "I'm doing enough." and "You can't save the world on your own." But those are the exact statements that I am going to ignore. I'll never feel like I'm doing enough if there are still children out there who are suffering at the hands of the world, when they could be joyful when resting in the hands of the Lord. And, yes, I know that I can't save the world on my own, but I can at least try to help. My mission is to teach children about God, and make sure that they are going to live their life in him, and live their life happily. I know that sometimes actions speak louder than words, and I am helping children everyday, especially one awesome 1st grader who needs a little guidance right now. But all of this is going on in a public school, even though I'm not a teacher, I am a mentor, and I am sure that if I institute God into a conversation, someone is going to get mad at me, and stop me from doing what I love everyday. I want to teach children about God, and I'm not going to stop pushing until I can start doing this. I hope that when God calls you, you are persistent in following what God wants you to do, and don't give up on Him when he stays silent. Sometimes, silence is all you need, and sometimes silence is there to tell you something that you refuse to hear. Don't shut your ears, listen to God in all the ways he tries talk to you.

Have a great weekend!
God bless you all!!!
If you have any questions, tweet me @jennings_clay and when questions build up, I'll make a post all posed to that purpose!!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

God's Not Dead 2

I just watched the movie, God's Not Dead 2, and I have to say that it really speaks to me. The original movie was amazing, and provided lots of reasons that God is surely alive, but the sequel really had more impact on me. It relates more to me, as high school Christian, struggling to keep my faith in a society where Jesus is hated. I'm not going to give a full review, other than fully recommending it for people who feel like they are having the same problems as Grace Wesley in the movie. You have the right to have your beliefs, and in the movie, they touch hardly on the idea of "separation between church and state." Expect a post soon about the separation between church and state, and how you can bring God into anything you do, and not have to worry about what other people think. Don't think about how many people you touch, but that you touch at least one person. Have a great night! God bless you all!

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

What can I watch? What can I read? What can I eat?

These three questions seem to plague Christian controversy the most!  I will try to approach each topic with as much consideration, and Biblical direction as I can! Hope you enjoy!

What can I watch? What can I read?

So, these first two questions go right along with one another. Many people struggle with what to read or watch because it most likely is coming in from the secular world. I've been struggling with this concept quite a bit with the release of the new Harry Potter edition. Of course, I went ahead and read it before I dove in trying to figure out if this is okay. I know that in many places the Bible says that we should have nothing to do with witchcraft. However, this applies to existing witchcraft, I really hope that you wouldn't believe that Harry Potter is a non-fiction tale. And, if it makes you feel much better, J.K. Rowling and many other places have delved into the concept of Christian allegory placed in the seventh Harry Potter novel. Then comes the question, what about fiction? Technically, fiction is not truthful, therefore some people call it lying. There are a few places in the Bible that I would like to point you to in these questions. The first is 1 Corinthians 10:23-24, "'I have the right to do anything,' you say, but not everything is beneficial 'I have the right to do anything,' you say, but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others." This goes in more depth later on in 1 Corinthians chapter 10 as well. But, with these two verses, we see that as long as what you're watching or reading is not interfering with the good of others, and that you always have the good of others in mind, you are okay to continue forward. This does not mean that you should watch and read everything! Just because it says it's okay, per se, don't go about reading things that will change your well-being, because if you change, that affects the people around you drastically. If you get in to reading secular novels or watching secular television, be aware of what's going on inside of you and around you. If you're attitude picks up, you are not working for the well-being of others, target that problem and get rid of it. If some sort of depression sets in because of what you've devoted your time to, put the book down and pick up the good and joyful Bible. Nothing you do on earth should cause you to shy away from your walk with God. If reading Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings or anything along those lines, puts you in a situation where you question your faith, then STOP READING THEM! As long as you are sure that there is nothing on the earth you hold above God and Jesus Christ. I know that you might be tempted to say that nothing on earth you could possibly hold above God. That is false, I'm so sorry to tell you. When you sin on earth, you are pushing God out of your mind because you're afraid. Of course, we know that through Jesus you are forgiven of your sins, but they are  still sins. Even though you know you have the Savior,  Satan is still coming after you. If you fall to sin, then you're on the road to falling from God, Satan is always ready to lead you away. Don't let what earthly things you do be the cause of this new and treacherous path that brings you away from God.

What can I eat?

I know that there is a big long list of things in Leviticus that we cannot eat. Unfortunately, this has become the target point from secular, and even some Christians, rationalizations of other sins that have come in to this world. There are two quick places in the New Testament that I'm going to take you to bring an answer to these accusations used to rationalize other sins. The first is Mark 7:17-19, "After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about his parable" (see earlier in Mark 7 for the parable) "'Are you so dull?' [Jesus] asked. 'Don't you see that nothing that enters a person from the outside can defile them? For it doesn't go into their heart but into their stomach, and then out the body.' (in saying this, Jesus declared all foods clean.)" The second place in the Bible is Acts 10:10-15, "[Peter] became hungry and wanted something to eat, and while the meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance. He saw heaven opened up and something like a large sheet being let down to earth by its four corners. It contained all kinds of four-footed animals, as well as reptiles and birds. Then a voice told him, 'Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.'
"'Surely not, Lord!' Peter replied. 'I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.'
"The voice spoke to him a second time, 'Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.'"
I feel like these two sets of verses don't need anymore explanation than what is presented in and of themselves, but in case you do have questions, tweet me! My twitter will be above with the quote from John Wesley.

I hope that this long post provided a little insight into helping you decide how to live your life on the Christian walk with Jesus. I will add one more thing to the first question, I have come to the conclusion of stopping watching cable television. Note! This is my own personal preference, not a condemnation for other people! I came to this conclusion because of the increased secularism, dramatization, rationalization of sin, and flat out sadness and discomfort each show leaves me with. I went back to my childhood years of watching Disney movies, and reading, lots of reading. Old Disney movies and just old shows from the 20th century, are much better and more appropriate for all ages in my opinion. I will write again soon! Have a great night! And God bless!

Blog Update

I know that when this blog began I said I would be posting a devotion everyday. Well, it's been less than a month, and that has been changed. I also missed the news update on Friday, I apologize for that as well. In the past week I haven't felt moved to tell you anything yet, it's still summer vacation for me and I haven't been exposed to lots of thought provoking things. I start school next week, and I'm finally up and running again! This means that there may still be hiccups of days or a week that I miss a few things, but please forgive me, I'm still getting a hang of this concept. New post should be up within the hour! Have a great night! God bless!