Tag Archives: family

Left Behind

It was nearly 8:30 pm on Wednesday night, when the message had just been preached. She was impressed by the Holy Spirit to sing, “I have decided to follow Jesus.” As I sat back and listened to the singing congregation, I gained a new understanding for the message behind the lyrics.  Though we have sung this familiar song on more than one occasion, today the words to the song really stood out.

“I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back. The world behind me, the cross before me. Though none go with me, still I will follow.” Do we really understand what that means?

Noah, Lot, and many of our ancestors did. How do I know? The bible tells of how they were faced with the very same decision. They had to choose to either follow God or get left behind. In the cases of Noah and Lot, they chose to follow God. Then, the world they knew was ultimately destroyed because of its sinful nature. That glimpse into their past, our past, shows us the lesson that hopefully our generation must learn before it’s too late. Any path or lifestyle that is not Christ-like will not lead to salvation but destruction.

As a Christian, you must decide to either get left behind or leave behind the things and people who will stand in your path towards salvation. We were born alone and so shall we be when we face His judgment. God is the only one who ought to stand before us. As Christians, we acknowledge that we are the followers of Christ and no one else.

It means that our parents, siblings, children, colleagues, spouses, friends, NO ONE can stand before us. We are to let no one cause us to get left behind. The end of time is near. Our probationary period is nearly over. Have you chosen a side yet? Christ or Satan? Heaven or Hell? Life or Death? Time waits for no one. Christ is preparing to leave His throne to return for His children, will you be among the ones that will step ahead or get left behind…forever?

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The Role of a Christian Woman

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the role of a Christian man according to the scriptures. This week, let us explore the significance of a Christian woman. In order for us to understand the role of a Christian woman, we must know her origin.

“…but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof; And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.” [Genesis 2:20-24 KJV]

Eve was the first woman mentioned in the bible. She was the first woman God created to live on this earth. Her responsibility was to care for her family,  nurture her children, and maintain the household.

Many of us are familiar with Proverbs 31 which describes a virtuous woman [Proverbs 31: 10-31 KJV]. A woman is wise, strong, trustworthy, loving, a hard-worker,  beautiful, kind, and supports her husband in his endeavors. The list of qualities goes on and on, but sadly most women in today’s society do not exhibit half of these characteristics.

Most women have lost their self-respect. They do not know their self-worth, looking for validation everywhere but up above. As God’s children, we are invaluable. In John 3:16, God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son…to die for us. What a way to express one’s love for another!

There are many Christians who have misinterpreted Ephesians 5:22-33, which asks wives to submit themselves unto their husbands. Many of us read the first line and forget about the rest of the text which mirrors our earthly marital relationship to Christ’s relationship with the Church. In verses 23-25, it says “For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;”  Submission is not a sign of weakness but respect and love for one another. Woman came from man so man was charged with the responsibility to lead as Christ did. Remember Christ never made His children feel worthless. He did not flaunt His authority and only sought only good for us. In a relationship, both parties  must be willing to set aside their needs for the overall benefit of their partner and relationship. Love is selfless not selfish.

Throughout the bible, we are given examples of women–strong yet humble. Ruth, Esther, and Jesus’ mother Mary who stood out from the rest and willingly submitted to God.  These women cared for themselves, their family, their nation, but mostly importantly their God. They were called to fulfill a greater purpose. Their lives are lessons for our own lives.

Today, women are portrayed as weak or inferior–the damsel in distress. They are not considered equals to their male counterparts, especially in the workforce. Women have had to fight for equality and respect, from their right to vote to their right to equal pay. Nowadays, most women have deemed themselves independent for a variety of reasons. They have alienated themselves from men altogether. This act was never in God’s plan for our lives. He established a family unit involving one man and one women, then children. He never intended for single-parent households. He never intended for any of His children to be mistreated, violated, disrespected, or worse.

To my fellow sisters, I hope that you will closely study the lives of the women who have lived before us. I challenge you to be a role model. Premarital sex and unplanned pregnancies continue to be  rampant issues faced within our churches. These young ladies are in need of someone to encourage and uplift them. We cannot forget the men as well. It is so easy for us to judge others when we’re not in their situation. What if were you who came to church one day, pregnant and unmarried, how would you want to be treated?

I pray that you will be like the virtuous woman described in the book of Proverbs. Let us be obedient to God and submit ourselves to His will, wherever it may lead. You never know what blessings He has in store for you.

Author:  Kristia M. Beaubrun

http://www.kristiabeaubrun.wordpress.com

Source: http://www.hebronfrenchsda.wordpress.com

My Brother (Sister)’s Keeper

“Timmy, where’s your brother?,” said Mrs. Peters.

“I don’t know. He went over there somewhere,” he responded while pointing to the open field on the right.

“Timmy, I asked you to keep an eye on your younger brother if you were going to play outside,” said Mrs. Peters with a hint of worry in her voice. “I can’t believe you let him wonder out there on his own. I am very disappointed in you. Now go back into the house while I go search for Tommy.”

Throughout the bible, we are given examples for familial relationships from Adam and Eve to Mary and Joseph . We have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Families that have walked together in faith like Noah’s.  Families that killed like Adam’s, full of jealousy and envy like Joseph’s, or lust like David’s.

We have read about the lives of these parents, spouses and siblings. Some were happy endings while others ended in tragedy.  Their lives are our lessons and yet throughout humanity, there are evidences of how we still don’t get it. We are still in remedial class though all of the answers to our questions have already been given to us in the Word of God.

As Christians, we have been charged with the great responsibility of being our brother and  (sister)’s keeper. Remember the story of Cain and Abel in the book of Genesis. Adam and Eve bore two sons, Cain then Abel. Cain was a tiller of the ground while Abel was a keeper of sheep. Both brought offerings unto the Lord but God only accepted one of the two. Cain killed Abel because God chose Abel’s offering over his. Read the story in Genesis 4 . “And the LORD said unto Cain, where is Abel they brother? And he said, I know not; Am I my brother’s keeper?” Why would God ask Cain for Abel when He had foreseen the first crime? God is omniscient. He knows and sees everything. He doesn’t need to ask what happened, but gives you an opportunity to confess to Him.

Throughout the bible, we see the word, “keeper.”A keeper is someone who is a guardian or protector. David, the son of Jesse, was a keeper of sheep. He protected them from any harm that would present itself in the wildness, such as lions.

Jesus is our keeper [Psalm 121:5 KJV] but He has enlisted us to also look after one another.  Don’t be mistaken. Jesus is more than able to handle this task, however, being a Christian or follower of Christ is all about self-accountability and accountability for others.

God is holding us accountable for our family AND friends. Most of us would rather focus on our own families rather than our global family.  Aren’t we all related through God, our Creator? “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” [Genesis 1:27 KJV]  You are responsible for every man, woman, and child regardless of your familial relation.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16 KJV] Does it say anywhere that the Son died for one and not the other? No! It says “whosoever believeth” not if you’re related to me or share the same ethnicity.

“For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” [Romans 10:12, 13 KJV]

We can rest assured knowing that God is our keeper for He “shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul” [Psalm 121:7 KJV] without discrimination.

Thanks for reading, share this with others, and God bless!

Author: Kristia M. Beaubrun

http://www.kristiabeaubrun.wordpress.com

Source: http://www.hebronfrenchsda.wordpress.com

An Everlasting Promise

When a promise is made to you by someone you know and/or love don’t you expect them to keep it? And when they don’t maybe you respond the way I do and become very disappointed in the person and you may even lose your trust in their word. You no longer expect them to come through when they say they will. Your relationship with this person may become stagnant because you no longer have the desire to maintain your connection with them. Well, I would like to give you a word of encouragement and encourage myself to take on a new attitude. So to begin, let’s keep in mind that #1 People Fail, #2 People break their Promises and #3 People don’t keep their word. And the more interesting part is that these “people” include the person that looks back at us in the mirror!  We may have every intention in our hearts and our minds to not be a failure, to keep a promise we made or stand by and keep our word, but, our human nature kicks in and we simply can’t do it on our own.

There is clear evidence in God’s Word of why we can’t put our trust in anyone including ourselves. In Jeremiah 17:9 the bible tells us that the heart is deceitful above ALL THINGS and is DESPERATELY WICKED! WHO CAN KNOW IT?? Basically our hearts are not trustworthy. And in verse 10, God clarifies that He searches the heart and He knows it and does/gives to us according to our ways and the fruit of our doings. But it’s interesting, because God gives us beyond what we deserve. But He looks at us and sees what He has placed in us that will bless others, makes us feel blessed, but most of all give glory to HIM. Another scripture that speaks to trusting a man/woman/self is found in Psalm 146:3 where David reminds us to not put our trust in princes, in the son of man, in WHOM THERE IS NO HELP…And David states the alternative, which is the only option actually that will not steer us wrong, to have the God of Jacob (that’s relationship!) for help and our hope should be in the Lord our God. This will bring us happiness and where disappointment is not present and there is (true) happiness there is peace. Please keep in mind that only through God can you or I be trustworthy, not of ourselves, however but through God’s goodness. While there are significant people that God will place in our lives that we will desire to trust, such as a spouse, a parent, a pastor, a sibling, or a friend there is a condition for this trust. We must trust the person with the understanding that we are human and we FAIL, for there is no perfect person (Romans 3:10). So, we must not trust a fellow human being the way we will trust God, for we will be gravely disappointed and hurt. We can only put our complete trust in God, because He knows our hearts, loves us, and is the only one we will not fail.

When God is our potter and we are His clay (Isaiah 64:8), He will mold us into what He would have us to be. He will keep his promises. If we ask anything in His name, according to His will that God may be glorified in it, He will do it (John 14:13). He is faithful and just in all his works (Psalm 111:7 ) and we are the workmanship of His hands (Ephesians 2:10), so He will keep His word. He has made us a little lower than the angels and crowned us with glory and honor (Psalm 8:5). But although God is more than willing to bless us and fulfill our needs, we must surrender over to Him. We must be obedient and keep His commandments. This is plain, evident, and clear when we read Isaiah 55. I pray that you read this chapter in its entirety because it will open your eyes to endless possibilities of what your life would be with a true and grounded relationship with God.

Isaiah 55 talks about how blessed we would be if we would seek God, which we can only do by our own free will, by surrendering, and in surrender we will become so in love with who He is that we will do whatever it takes to have a relationship with Him, which is obedience to His Word, His commandments, and in obeying His word, He will keep His Word, His promise. He declares in verse 11 that HIS WORD from His mouth will not return void unto Him, it won’t be empty, it will be true and come to life with the intent/the purpose that He had for it and will prosper where He sent it. So in essence take this word, as God telling you, though men/women fail you in this life, I am HE that will never fail you both now and forevermore! What a promise! What a word! God’s Word for your life, will not return void unto Him. The question is will you accept it?? For He knows the thoughts and plans that He has for each of us, of peace, not of evil, of hope and to GIVE us AN EXPECTED END. Prayerfully you will continue/begin to trust solely on God and to have a desire to love Him and be obedient to His Word so that He will reveal His Word that He’s customized exclusively for your life.

Many blessings to you & yours !!!

Author: Jenifer M. Wilcher, LMSW

Source: http://www.hebronfrenchsda.wordpress.com

The Role of a Christian Man

Husbands, fathers, sons, and brothers. Some of us are blessed to have all of these male figures, while others have none. Then there are those who have these figures in the family of Christ. I have been blessed with a father and many brothers in Christ. Though I am not yet married, I know God is working on him and I to ensure a strong union.

As the eldest of three girls, I have watched as my father has struggled to fulfill his role as the head of the household. He has struggled to be the husband and father God has called him to be. Being around mostly women,  is no easy task. Men need that support system in order to be encouraged as they press forward.

Over the last few days, I have had an opportunity to bond with my father. So often in life, we fail to make time for family togetherness. Yet we wonder why families around the world are breaking apart. During this daddy-daughter time, I realized some of the sacrifices he made for my sisters and I. I cannot truly thank him for putting his own needs aside for the needs of his children. I wondered if I had ever showed my appreciation. Had I made him proud of my accomplishments, our accomplishments? I asked him and he confirmed that the sacrifices he made were nothing compared to the successes of his three daughters. Those words brought me comfort, motivating me to strive for excellence. I wasn’t only doing it for myself, but for my father.

Our pastors, our husbands, our fathers, our sons were called to be the priests of our churches and homes. Sadly, we have witnessed the end result of these men who were called to be strong leaders for Christ. The devil has launched a full assault against our men, because he knows their undeniable strength and great responsibility in the gospel. Families have been torn apart by violence, crime, drugs, imprisonment, and even death. Women have had to fend for themselves, starring as the mother and father in their households.

By God’s grace our families, though broken, continue to push through every obstacle, overcoming every challenge placed in their paths.

Throughout the bible, we find examples of men in leadership as disciples, priests,  elders, and rulers. They have been called by God to serve in ministry, guiding the church and its people according to His will. Many men have stumbled, however, God continues to hold these men accountable for the great responsibility He has placed on them. They ought to care for their families as Christ does. They ought to care for the church, as He does. There are no acceptable excuses.

God placed Adam in the Garden of Eden to “dress it and to keep it.”  [Genesis 2:15] Adam was given the authority to name all of the animals. As he walked through the garden, he realized that every animal was paired. He was alone so God decided to create a help meet for him. He was to also look after his wife, Eve. “And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;  And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. [Genesis 2:18, 21-14]

From the very beginning, God established the role of man and the importance of family. They go hand in hand. “For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?” [1 Timothy 3:5] Without those two foundations, the church of God cannot prosper. [Read Ephesians 5:23-33] We can no longer choose to ignore the growing problem in our churches, the exodus of our men.

I challenge you to appreciate, empower, uplift, and encourage the men in your lives. Pray for them whether they are in the church or not. Love them unconditionally and take the time to treasure them. Do not judge them, for they are not perfect…and neither are you. Keep in mind that our pastors are men first. They also need our support. Though the men carry a heavy burden, they do not carry it alone. That is the purpose of family. We share our struggles and victories together.

Author: Kristia M. Beaubrun

http://www.kristiabeaubrun.wordpress.com

Source: http://www.hebronfrenchsda.wordpress.com

What’s In a Touch?

International Women’s Day of Prayer

Speaker: Eunice Senior-Baker, Northeastern Conference of SDA

Scripture Reading: Luke 8:40-48

As women, we must reclaim our responsibility as prayer warriors. We must pray for the church, pray for each other, pray for our young people, pray for those who don’t know the Lord. When women pray, great things happen.

One concern of the devil is to keep perople from praying. He doesn’t care about prayerless religion or prayerless work. He laughs at our toil, mocks at our wisdom, but trembles when we pray. So let us continue in prayer.

In Luke 40, we read the story of the ruler of a synagogue who came to Jesus, pleading for Him to heal his only daughter. Jesus never turns down someone’s cry for help. He was on an emergency call. So He headed to Jairus’ house. The crowd also followed Him. As He headed to the house to stand by the girl’s bedside, a women suffering from an issue of blood for 12 years snuck into the crowd and touched His garment.

We don’t know her name. She is referred to as the woman with an incurable issue of blood. She was so stigmatized that no one cared to learn her name. She was identified by her issue and not by the contributions she offered nor her value. She lived under the  Levitical laws, during which it was important for a woman to be identified by family or position in the community. Due to her issue, she was a social outcast for 12 years, excommunicated from the temple and synagogue, considered impure. She was divorced from her husband and abandoned by her family.

For 12 years she sought help and healing from physicians who were stumped. She suffered alone with this illness. She lost all hope and was in despair. She heard that Jesus was in town and had heard of all the miracles He had done. He cast out demons, made the lame to walk, the dumb to speak,  and calmed the seas. She knew that He was the great physician and the only one who could help her. This was her only chance she thought. So she made her way through the crowd thinking that she only had to touch the hem of His garment and that would be enough. It was now or never and she had nothing else to lose, because she had already lost everything.

In one touch, she concentrated all of her faith and instantly her illness gave place to good health. We must all touch Jesus for ourselves. Jesus recognized the touch and halted, turning to ask who touched Him. Jesus was surrounded by a crowd so any one of them could have touched Him, Peter thought. This touch was different and Jesus knew it, because He felt virtue leave Him. Jesus knows the difference between a touch of need from a touch of greed.

This woman was treated by the church and the people as nothing or nobody. Jesus sought the person who touched Him and fearfully she spoke up in fron of the many who had abandoned her in her time of need. Jesus, however, called her His daughter. She was somebody, the daughter of the Prince of Peace.

Jesus is never too pre-occupied to not recognize the cry, quest, and need of a single, solitary soul. There is a certain sensitivity which Jesus has towards the needs of each of us. No one is ever hidden from Him.

Why didn’t Jesus let the woman stay hidden? The Son of God knew who touched Him. That’s not why He asked the question. There’s a lesson behind it. If she remained hidden, the good of the action would fail her. She needed to know who healed her and not how or people would want Jesus’ clothes. Matthew 5:34 says, “And he said unto her, Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague.” Healing didn’t come from His clothes. She shouldn’t be misled. Touching Christ or His clothes didn’t bring healing, because there were many in the crowd who interacted with Him. They were also sick, but not healed. She couldn’t think that her touch could work a miracle. Jesus wanted to recognize her faith. Her touch was different, not a casual t ouch, but a conscious, deliberate, voluntary, dependent, saving, pre-meditated touch of faith.

Hers was a touch motivated by faith and faith always stop Jesus in His tracks. It gets His attention every time. God wants us to have a personal relationship with Him. We must know the Savior, if we must experience personal salvation. We must not be satisfied with being a part of the crowd. We may be near Jesus in a thousand crowds and yet not once in contact with Him. We are too c omfortable with surrounding Him as a crowd, but never truly knowing Him, or purposefully touching Him.

Jesus loves you so much that He made a way for you to be saved. That is why He died for you.  He loves us too much to let us die. Jesus is still here for you. He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

Chameleon Christians

All through my childhood years, I have always heard that we ought to be set apart and not conformed to this world. I was watching a sermon one night and the speaker used the same verse but put a twist to it that I have never heard before.

Memory Text:
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-His good, pleasing and perfect will. – Romans 12:2

What he translate this verse to mean was that there are many Christians who have become expert chameleons. They have learned how to conform in every environment. In the club they drop it like it’s hot, then in the church they praise Him like they’re crazy. They spend the week cursing up a storm, then at church they teach that Bible school class like they’ve been at the feet of Jesus all week. It is true that we ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. However, this is no excuse to live a chameleon lifestyle.

God has called us to be TRANSFORMED and not conformed. When you are transformed, you change the atmosphere wherever you go. When you are conformed, the atmosphere changes you. GET IT? As Christians, we are the salt and light of the world. We are the ones who ought to be changing the atmosphere. We ought to be the ones bringing change to the world and NOT the other way around. Whenever you get in an environment where you are being conformed by the atmosphere that is your cue to LEAVE!

The Bible calls us “[But you are a] chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” -1 Peter 2:9. Therefore, we are to act and live like we are a special people. By special I in no way mean EXCLUSIVE. Although we are called to be a separate people bringing change to the world, we are also called to be an inclusive people who share the Gospel message with all who would hear.

Today, think about your environments, your friends, job, family, etc. Are you living a transformed life or have you become a professional chameleon Christian? If so, isn’t it time you decide to change your lifestyle and live a life that glorifies God. I have always been one who tries to please everyone. One day, I woke up and realized that I was tired of trying to conform to everyone’s expectations. I realized that being ME is who God created me to be and if someone doesn’t accept me as God created me, then I am still going to love them and continue to be ME.

Resolve to be an authentic Christian WHEREVER you go. If you can’t be one where you are going, then don’t go. If you can’t be one around that person, stop hanging around them. Whatever will keep you from being true to God and inheriting the Kingdom, CUT IT (THEM) OFF. Be transformed as of today!

Prayer Prompt:
Dear Lord,

I am tired of trying to be everything to everybody. I am tired of trying to conform to all of my environments. Lord, transform me and teach me how to bring change to all of my environments. Give me the courage to walk away from the atmospheres that jeopardize my walk with you.

Thanks for reading and remember God loves you. Be blessed!

Author: Rachel Ineus

http://blog.annointedbeauty.com