Rich and I really enjoy watching Pastor Kerry Shook on television. Because his program is shown at around 3:30 a.m California time, we have our DVR set to record each sermon daily. Pastor Kerry Shook is the lead pastor at Woodlands Church in Texas.
Pastor Shook and his wife Chris write a daily devotional blog that is truly inspiring. You can check out their blog by clicking here . This past week, Pastor Shook has been preaching on a series called, "Restoring Lost Values" in our families, relationships and lives...
Today's blog post by Pastor Shook is called; "Soar Above The World."
I have included the post below;
Soar Above The World
"Jesus Christ stood on a hillside next to the Sea of Galilee and preached the greatest message of all time. We call it the Sermon on the Mount, and the most famous part of the Sermon on the Mount is The Beatitudes. In The Beatitudes, Jesus torpedoed the lies that our culture feeds us about what real winning is.
Now, the word beatitude simply means blessed, and in The Beatitudes, we see the kind of life that God blesses. Beginning in Matthew 5:3, it reads:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.”
If the air inside a balloon is the same as the air outside a balloon, it can’t soar. And Jesus was saying in The Beatitudes, if you want to soar in life, what’s on the inside of your life has to be completely different than the atmosphere on the outside of your life. You can’t breathe in the toxins of our culture and expect to soar in life. You’ll live your life either based on what the Word says or what the world says, but you can’t live with both.
Jesus was saying that if you want to soar, if you want to live a life that’s blessed by God, you have to have something on the inside that’s very different from the atmosphere on the outside of your life. I challenge you today to let Jesus fill you up so that you can soar like never before."
Okay, so I know you are all wondering, what does any of this have to do with the Disney-Pixar movie "UP"?
Well I will tell you ...
Pastor Shook's blog post really got me thinking ...
Do we do it?
Do we create a home that is filled-UP with the WORD of the Lord and SOARS high UP above the WORLD ?
It is easy to put-up scripture verses of the word around our homes, but do we actually fill or home, our children and all those who enter our home with the TRUTH of the word ?
Do we make our home a safe haven that is separate from the ways of the world ?
Are we convicted by the ways of the world as Christians and do we try to live a life that is separate, or do we compromise our faith to fit in with the world?
It certainly is convenient for us to post scriptures to our Facebook walls, blogs and twitter, but do we actually live and breath what we post?
Are we who we say we are?
These are some of the questions that ran through my mind while reading Pastor Shook's blog post today.
As quoted in the blog post; "If you want to soar in life, what’s on the inside of your life has to be completely different than the atmosphere on the outside of your life."
This particular thought really resonated within me. Probably because as I am sure with most of you, it convicted me... it made me think of all the ways I can improve as a wife and mother in my home.
In my home teachings with my son this week, I started Bible lessons with him along with weekly scripture memory verses. Our theme for this month is "Obeying God" and our scripture reference is Acts 5:29; "Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!"
( I am following a Bible curriculum for Robbie and I just couldn't believe how well this pre-selected verse from the toddler curriculum fit perfectly with Pastor Shook's message.)
In fact, that is this weeks memory verse; "Obey God" ( this is a BIG verse for a recently turned two year old." :)
Along with our memory verse, I introduced Robbie to the Bible story of Jonah and The Big Fish, ( which we are calling a whale because as most two year old boys would agree, whales are really cool!).
Tuesday was the first day I read the story to him. I then found a short eight minute children's video of Jonah and The Whale. After the video, Robbie and I sat and just talked about this wonderful Bible story. I reviewed the story with him and explained that Jonah did not obey God at first.
So there my little two year old sat in our big overstuffed leather chair in our living room, with skinny little bird legs dangling. He was all eyes as I told him the story. I wasn't really sure if he was absorbing it all. Throughout the day, I would repeat the memory verse with him over and over again; " Obey God". We need to OBEY GOD. I want to teach him to meditate on the word of the Lord.
Well, it wasn't until that same evening when Daddy came home from work that I was sure it all really clicked!!! After supper, we walked down to a nearby park. The park with the "big train" as Robbie calls it.
We love this park because it has a wonderful walking path/ trail that is lush with green grass and blooming with brightly colored daisies...
We told Robbie that he could play in the park when we were all done with our walk. We decided to not use the stroller and allow our little one to run and walk alongside us. As we walked Rich asked Robbie to; "tell Daddy what you and Mommy learned today during school time."
I completely expected Robbie to talk about the square cutting and gluing shape activity we had worked on earlier that morning, but to my surprise and DELIGHT....
Robbie began telling Daddy the story of Jonah and The Whale,well as well as a two year old can!
He told Rich that Jonah; "no obey God" and he went on a; "big Boat, like Daddy". He then said that, "Jonah fell off boat into da( the) water and a big walel (whale) , wallow (swallow) him. Jonah in the walel tummy and walel (whale) pit (spit) him out".
Honestly, I was thrilled!!! I looked at Rich, who was completely blown away by the re-telling of the story by our two year old son...
So I tested the waters a little more and asked Robbie what our memory verse was for the week? Prompting him just a little I started him off by saying;
"obe" - he quickly jumped in with a loud; "obey God"!
We told Robbie how proud we were of him. As we continued to walk along, Robbie ran over to a patch of yellow daisies... he crouched down, plucked one brightly colored yellow daisy and ran over to me and said; "here mommy" with a proud beaming smile! I scooped him up and gave him a hug and told him thank you and that I loved him. He then ran back to the same patch and plucked another yellow daisy, this time running over to Rich and said; "Daddy too" as he handed Rich a flower.
This was such a huge reminder to me what a blessing children are, but also what a blessing it is to keep the word of the Lord alive in our home and active in our son's life.
This is Mommy's scripture memory verse for the week...
That is when it hit me, as parents we are Obeying God by following the above scripture! Isn't it great when the Lord prepares little life learning experiences like that throughout our day?
This experience has me wanting more... I want to have a house that is filled with the love and word of the Lord not the; "toxins of our culture"! How about you? The way's of the world seem enticing and good, but they are a lie.