What We Believe
Biblical Soul Care
Party With the Pastors
Harvest Bible Fellowship
Marriage Matters Resources
God At Work
Bible Reading Plan
Trent Griffith Blog
Micah Klutinoty Blog
Andrea Griffith Blog
WORSHIP TIMES & LOCATION
Click to View More
View Larger Map
Worship with us Sundays at 9:00am and 11:00am.
Harvest Bible Chapel
52277 Hickory Road
Granger, Indiana 46530
For more on Times and Locations,
For more information, call us at (574) 273-0007
Micah Klutinoty's Blog
Micah Klutinoty Blog
O Taste and See
Jesus, Faithful Word of God
Monday, February 25 2013 @ 09:05 PM
This is a great song for the church, written by a good friend (Andi Rozier), about the beauty that is the Living Word of God.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God....and the Word became flesh and dwelled among us...
Not only did Jesus come as the living Word, but the Holy Bible has been preserved through the ages as the infallible, sure Word of God! It says who our God is. It is greater than our deepest needs. And It will not fail us...ever! Such an incredible thing to say to the Lord in song.
I love this video, that the Seed Company put together with Brenton Brown who co-wrote this song. Such a moving picture seeing a foreign country and people getting God's Holy Word for the first time in their language!
You will not fail us, oh Word of God!
Worship Order 2/24
Monday, February 25 2013 @ 08:53 PM
Great morning in worship! Intentionally seeking to surrender the things of this world for the treasure that is found in the Kingdom of Heaven. Fun to do some familiar, stripped down acoustic songs. Blessed.
Worship Order 2/24
Call To Worship: Psalm 24:3-4
1. I Love You Lord
2. Hungry (K. Scott)
3. I Surrender All
*Time of self reflection and surrender. Congregation got on their knees before the Lord.
4. Do What Only You Can Do (E Hoagland, Vertical Church)
~Sang over congregation as they were on their knees.
~People spontaneously declared "I surrender _______"
Congregational Declaration: Psalm 84
How lovely is your dwelling place,
O Lord of hosts!
My soul longs and even faints for the courts of the Lord!
My heart and Flesh Sing for Joy to the Living God
For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere!
5. Better Is One Day In Your Courts (Redman)
6. All Glory (A. Rozier, Vertical Church)- 2 Choruses
7. My Faithful God (M. Klutinoty, Hoagland, Cowart)
THE GOSPEL: THE MAIN THING SHAPING OUR WORSHIP
Thursday, June 21 2012 @ 09:24 AM
1 Corinthians 9:16
For if I preach the gospel, that gives me no ground for boasting. For necessity is laid upon me. Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!
Laid upon Paul was the call, the divine compulsion, and the obligation to preach the Word of God...the Gospel. This was not of himself, but a call and commission by God himself, to be a minister of the Gospel. Paul had no ground for boasting in Himself, but every reason to boast in Christ. He knew that the most severe chastening from God would be reserved for unfaithful ministers (Heb. 13:7, James3:1), hence his statement,
"Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel!"
So Paul, remained faithful to the preaching of the true Gospel of Jesus Christ, not for the
approval of man
, but for the
approval of God
So what can we take away from this?
Not all of us are called "ministers" by profession, but all of us who are in Christ have been called. We have a responsibility to remain faithful to the truth of the Gospel, uphold it within our lives, and worship in the glorious story:
Christ died in
as a substitute for
and all who
on the name of the Lord
will be saved.
the main thing, the main thing
...The Gospel is that thing! The repetition of the Gospel in our lives is the greatest shaping tool for us as worshipers. The cry of human depravity is that we would receive the glory, that we might boast in our accomplishments, we...we...we we we! The cry of the Gospel is that we aren't good enough; that we aren't worth boasting in, but that HE is greater than our sin, HE is better than our pride, HE is worthy of all our boasting! The beauty of the Gospel is that it brings into perspective our great need for a Savior! The Gospel reminds me that I
fall short of the glory of God (
Rom. 3:23), and that
I am like a
sheep who has gone astray, turning towards my own way
(Is. 53:6). But through the remembrance and recognition of my great need for a Savior, the Gospel reminds me that the Lord took my iniquity, the Lord bore my shame, the Lord
who knew no sin, became sin...that we might become the righteousness of God (
2 Cor. 5:21)!
Woe to me if I do not saturate myself in the Gospel!
Woe to us if we stray from the divine truth of the Gospel!
For it is there that we begin to see why there is
no God like our God
(Jer.10:6, Ps.113:5, Ps.86:8). Paul was a worshiper. He never missed an opportunity to throw in a vertical statement of worship in His letters (1Cor.1:28-31, Phil.4:4, Col.1:15-20). Why? Because all of His writing, and teaching was saturated in the Gospel. His entire life had been shaped by the truth that He was a sinner in need of a Savior, and Jesus was the only sacrifice that could bring redemption for His soul, cleansing of His sin, and give him eyes to see the Glory of God and not man.
In the truth of the Gospel, we can find no ground for boasting in ourselves; but every reason to boast in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! May it shape us as worshipers as we seek to faithfully hold it up in our lives.
Wednesday, June 06 2012 @ 10:29 PM
For Your steadfast love is great to the heavens,
Your faithfulness to the clouds.
Be exalted O God, above the heavens!
Let Your glory be over all the earth!
I snapped this shot on my phone this past weekend.
Wasn't really thinking spiritually.
Wasn't really looking for anything spectacular.
Was just enjoying some time with my folks, my wife, and my kids.
But God was at work. God is always at work!
Even the skies, clouds, and water work to display His glory,
reassure us of His faithfulness,
and lavish us with His love.
God initiates worship in everything.
Do you notice?
God is all around, even when we are unaware.
Are you aware?
God desires our worship and gives us plenty to respond to.
Are you responding?
soli deo gloria
(glory to God alone)
7 Posts, 7 Days: SEVEN!
Thursday, May 10 2012 @ 10:57 PM
For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh.
Praise God for His Holy Spirit, for it is by the Spirit of God that our worship has been redirected from earthly things to a Holy God! It is by the Spirit of God that our own spirit can rejoice in the Lord. It's by the Spirit that the knowledge of who God is is made known to me, and my eyes are opened and my heart abounds in the glorious worship of his renown that is all around. By the Spirit of God I
taste and see that the Lord is good (Ps34:8)!
. By the Spirit of God, mere songs become offerings of praise, and our minuscule voices become a sweet sweet sound to the ears of our God. By the Spirit of God our bodies have been transformed into a Holy place of worship:
Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple.
The Spirit of God has become the enabler to sinful mankind! The Holy Spirit has enabled us to fulfill that which we were created for...communion with God centered on His glory! The Holy Spirit opens our eyes to all that the Father is worth...thus enabling us to be the worshipers God created and is now seeking(Jn.4:23-24).
So all of that probably doesn't even dent all that the holy Spirit does in our lives concerning our worship, but it is certainly enough to see how foolish it would be to put our confidence in anything other than the Spirit of God!
Paul had a strong case for why he could be confident in His flesh. He did a lot of the right things, learned the right stuff, but apart from Christ, Paul knew firsthand that there was nothing! So it can't be about us! It can't be about what we know, how good of a singer we are, or how eloquent of a Bible teacher we are, etc...Where we begin to find confidence in our flesh, we begin to see our worship misdirected; Directed away from our Holy triune God, from whom only true worship flows, and onto our own efforts, attempts, and insufficiencies.
The beauty of true worship is that I don't have what it takes, but through the divine working of the trinity, the Holy Spirit initiates, stirs up, and takes our worship to our High Priest Jesus who can offer it wholly and acceptable to our God! That is worth my confidence. Jeremiah 9:23 says,
Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the LORD."
We can find plenty of earthly things to boast In or put our confidence in, but they will always disappoint. Our God will not disappoint, and He has given us His very Spirit to move us into a right heart of worship to our Righteous God. If you will boast, let us boast in the Lord together!
7 Posts, 7 Days: SIX
Wednesday, May 09 2012 @ 10:41 PM
God is intimately and intricately involved in every facet of our lives!
Isn't it incredible to think that we serve a God who is intimately and intricately involved in our greatest desires, our insecurities, our calling, and every facet of our lives?! My wife and I have been reminding one another of that truth a lot lately, in light of some stuff we've been going through. It's not always easy to believe that truth, but scripture constantly pours out the truth that our God knows us, is for us, and is with us.
Psalm 139 has been a go-to for me in the past few months. In frustration, in questioning, in trial, or whatever, the truths in this Psalm are so comforting.
O LORD, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I sit down and when I rise up;
You discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways...(139:1-3)
Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from you presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!...(139:7-8)
How precious to me are your thoughts O God!
How vast the sum of them!
If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
I awake and I am still with You. (139:17-18)
Search Me O God and know my heart!
Try me and know my thoughts.
And see if there be any grievous way in me, and
lead me in the way everlasting. (139:23-24)
It is easy in our humanity to lose sight of these matchless truths, but the beauty of our Lord is that He is constant, sovereign, and good in all things...never has he left us or forsaken us and at our worst He is there. The hymn writer in "come thou fount" explained our tendencies well when he wrote:
Prone to wander, Lord I feel it
Prone to leave the God I love.
But in our ability to waver, struggle, and even wander at times, God truly does know our thoughts, our ways, and
takes our heart, and seals it for His courts above!
In the Psalm 139 portions above, you'll notice the first two stanzas basically sum up that God knows everything about us to the most minuscule detail, and there is no chance that He is not with us in everything. Then, in the final two stanzas we see that David, after acknowledging that God was with Him, turned His own attention onto God. David began to say to the Lord how important His ways were to him, and asked Him to search him and root out any sin found.
God's attention is always on us. ALWAYS! But just as David models, as we acknowledge Gods attention towards us, we must turn our attention towards Him! Turning our attention towards God amidst trials or storms or even in good times is a choice. We can choose to
lean on our own understanding
in all our ways acknowledge HIM and he will make our paths straight (
Prov.3:5-6). But choosing to keep our attention on God does 2 things for us, as modeled by David:
1. Brings a desire for Holiness, as we ask the Lord to search us, know our hearts, and purify us.
2. Allows God to lead us down the narrow road of everlasting life in Jesus!
We can all say we want to be more like Christ in Holiness, and have God lead us down His path rather than walk alone! Amen? So knowing that
our God is intimately and intricately involved in every facet of our lives,
lets keep our attention focused on Him, the author, perfecter, and finisher of our faith and lives!
Post #6, Day #6: Five minutes to spare...phew:) Be blessed!
7 Posts, 7 Days: FIVE
Tuesday, May 08 2012 @ 07:11 AM
My small group has been going through a study by James MacDonald called "
Lord Change My Attitude.
" Last night's message was on LOVE and it was really convicting and has had my mind processing all night. I got up this morning to read back through 1 Corinthians 13 and the worksheets from the message. What I'm evaluating in my own life is why is Biblical love so important, and why do I make it so hard so often?
As I'm learning every step of the way, as I seek to serve the Lord in ministry, I came up with this statement recently:
There is nothing more depleting in ministry than executing a perfect service, or delivering the most powerful statement or song, if my love for the people is not in it. But, there is nothing more rewarding in ministry than watching hearts soften, eyes become attentive, and worshipers be restored as I truly walk with people and love people more than the service.
So I've been thinking on that statement and trying to apply it greatly over the past month. Because it can be hard right? Maybe your not in "full time ministry," but whether you are or not you do have a full time ministry wherever you are, in whatever you do...so this applies. But we all want to make things the best they can be, deliver truth the best way possible, understand scripture in its most contextual way, etc...And all those things are important, as we're called to
do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus
(Col.3:17), but apart from love towards God and towards people, it is meaningless. Paul describes this in First Corinthians 13:1-3, when he opens the chapter with, "
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal..."
Meaning he could be the most eloquent speaker, or the most exuberant worship leader, or the most passionate evangelist in the work place, but apart from a real love for people, people wouldn't hear what he had to offer and he would have nothing!
Only Jesus could be the perfect model of this, for He was FULL of grace and truth (Jn.1:17). He was FULL of grace and He was FULL of truth. I've been really thinking on this lately, and it's come up a lot in my life as I seek to serve the Lord. Jesus didn't heir towards one or the other, nor did He give one more attention. Jesus was FULL of grace and truth which aloud Him to love others with a 1 Corinthians 13 kind of love. But as a whole, we are bad at this LOVE thing in our day. The love movement is so watered down that people are feeling warm and cozy and loved on their way to hell, or the other extreme, people are so ingrained in the truth and "
their way or the highway"
that people are turned off to the real truth of Jesus...I can struggle with those two extremes for sure; how about you?
So what can we apply from scripture to how we love others, as we seek the ultimate goal of worshiping God and see others become worshipers of God? Obviously, 1 Corinthians lays out a huge list of what love is and looks like. I'd encourage you to spend some time reading it and examining your own life, but here are some of the things that I'm convicted of:
towards others is putting others before ourselves. It is patient, kind, and not rude even in disagreement and frustration.
does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth(1Cor.13:6).
Love is not compromising, nor is it withholding hard truth from people in sin or in opposition to God's Word. Real love makes known the truth. The hard question sometimes is, "am I confronting this person because I really love them, or because I know I'm right and they need to be made right..." There is a difference.
Love bears all things, hopes all things, believes all things, endures all things(
1Cor.13:7). When others don't see their wrongdoing, or continually choose the wrong, or even live differently than us, real love goes beyond confrontation or giving up...Real love prays intercessory prayers on behalf of others; Real love bears the hurt that others can continually bring upon themselves and you; Real love is there even when it's inconvenient or repeated.
Love Never Fails!
The perfectly balanced grace and truth love that Jesus displayed did not fail. His life was the standard that we might know what love is in this
; "while we were still sinners Christ died for us
(Rom.5:8)." And Jesus not only modeled it, but challenged us in John 15:12-13 when He said, "
This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends."
Love was pretty important to Jesus' ministry, and not only did He command it of us, but His Word speaks of it as the greatest among even characteristics such as faith and hope (1Cor.13:13)!
This whole study and thought process that started a few weeks ago, and is hashing itself out even now as the Lord sanctifies me more and more for His work, can be a burdening thought process. How will I ever have the
towards others that Jesus modeled so perfectly? Don't rely on yourself, but put your confidence in the Spirit; for its by the Spirit of God that we might find the fruits of the Spirit (Gal.5:22-24). Whether your in ministry, or God has called you to something else, let's get a biblical understanding of what love is, and submit ourselves to the Holy Spirit that it might take shape in our lives and in our work!
God loves you with an everlasting love! His love is the basis on which you can love others. All of our effort comes to nothing if you don't understand and grasp this truth: YOU ARE LOVED!
7 Posts, 7 Days: FOUR
Monday, May 07 2012 @ 10:36 PM
So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear the reproach he endured. For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.
Have you ever been so burdened, frustrated, or distressed that you in no way felt like praising the Lord, yet you allowed yourself to sing through the pain, praise through the tears, and worship anyways? Sometimes I think this is the best picture of a sacrifice of praise unto our Holy God.
A sacrifice is
a giving up of something valuable or important for somebody or something else considered to be of more value or importance
. Our worship is dependent on a sacrifice, and sacrifices are not always easy; Especially, when the sacrifice involves personal pain, frustration, or burden.
From the scripture passage above we see that Jesus suffered for the sake of others, that we too
may share in His sufferings
(2Tim.1:8, Phil.3:10)...As Jesus brought glory and honor to His Father through His suffering and sacrifice, out of our own suffering and pains can flow the deepest praise and adoration! Acknowledging the name of our God and praising His name in suffering takes tremendous sacrifice; but where there is a great sacrifice, there is strength to praise amidst the storm.
Not all of life is a happy, go-lucky experience. Ecclesiastes 3:4 tells us, "
There's a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance,
" and Jesus even told us,
"in this world you will have tribulation..."
(Jn.16:33). However, though our lives are not always constant and unchanging, we serve a God who is. As followers of Jesus seeking to be
holy and acceptable
unto our God, it is vital that we
present our bodies as living sacrifices
(Rom.12:1-2) everyday, regardless of our circumstances. Sure it'll be harder when your life is harder, but therein lies the meaning of the word sacrifice.
I will bless the Lord
at all times
, His praise shall continually be in my lips.
7 Posts, 7 Days: THREE
Sunday, May 06 2012 @ 09:37 PM
The most commanded word in all of the Bible is: "SING!"
76 times in the book of Psalm alone we see "SING!"
Psalm 47:6-7 by itself says, "
SING praises to God, SING praises! SING praises to our King, SING praises! For God is the King of all the earth; SING praises with a psalm."
Singing to the Lord is not just some lame, participation exercise that churches everywhere have come up with to warm up their congregation before opening the Bible on a Sunday. But, in our day, we have lost a good theology for congregational singing, which has led our Sunday morning "Church singing" to places that are anything but worship to God!
The command to SING in the Bible is
, NOT ENTERTAINING!
Somewhere along the way, the Church has become more and more passive to leading people in worship, so entertaining in "worship" has taken participations place. The idea that "
the good singers on stage will do my worshiping for me
," could not be further from the truth. When we gather together on a Sunday morning, as a congregation of people under the banner of Christ, it is a chance to gather with those whom we have all things in common with! Because of Jesus, we are the redeemed, "
called out of darkness into His marvelous light,
that we might proclaim the excellencies of His name!(
1Pet.2:9)" Psalm 100 calls us to
"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise..."
We gather as brothers and sisters, standing shoulder to shoulder, all with different gifts, stirring one another up in service to the Lord, the proclamation of His Word, the remembrance of His death/resurrection, and the adoration of Jesus! So while singing isn't the only vehicle for worshiping the Lord, it is certainly an important one that we are commanded to do in scripture. So, whether you sing like a bird, or sing like a coyote in a trash compacter...join the praises of Jesus and SING!
The command to SING is to SING
Psalm 96 says,
"Sing to the Lord a new song!Sing to the Lord all the earth; Sing to the Lord, bless His name; Tell of His salvation from day to day. Declare His glory among the heathens, His marvelous works among all people."
There would be NOTHING more lame, dumb, and pointless than getting a bunch of businessmen, successful professors, hard working moms, and anyone else together once a week to sing songs together...if God was not in them! Without God, the source of our salvation, the center of our attention, and the reason for our songs, what is the point!?! Scripture's command to sing is not so we can entertain ourselves, or entertain others, or to show off our ability or voice...The command to sing is for the Glory of His name! And when we gather with other believers once a week, it is a chance to declare the praises of God and stir one another up in worship. When we become followers of Jesus, and pick up our cross daily, we become worshipers of Jesus. Worshipers who seek to glorify God in what we do, speak, and sing!
The command to SING is founded on TRUTH
Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another with Psalms, Hymns, and spiritual songs..."
...Be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your hearts to the Lord."
Paul paints a great picture in the above two verses. There are many different types of songs, but One Spirit and One inerrant Word of God. And, within those verses we see the truth of God's word and it being communicated through singing! Which means, as we sing Psalms, or hymns or spiritual songs, all should fall under the theology and doctrine of the Bible, which is our only source that accurately allows us to know the "WHO" of our worship. A good friend of mine says, "
music is the glue that can infuse theology in the hearts of people."
A lot more people probably remember lyrics to a song over passages of scripture. So every time we sing together is really a chance to pour out theology and truth that is consistent with who our God is, sing to Him, and paint biblically faithful pictures of what He is doing and why He is worthy!
So we must be discerning with what we sing. Not every song deemed a hymn or "worship" song is biblically accurate, or theologically sound. When the Word of Christ
dwells in us richly,
we have a foundation for discernment in what we sing. And just a small comment I'd have towards our more modern practice of singing top 40 "secular" radio songs in church or covering classic rock hits to drive home a series title...as far as I can see Biblically, this is not a profitable practice. Is our God not great enough, big enough, and Holy enough for His people to jump at a chance to ascribe worth and glory due His name?!? The church doesn't need gimmicks, it needs to be passionately consumed with the adoration of Jesus. So let's sing truth when we gather together!
The command to SING starts with YOUR HEART
It's easy to fall into a routine. We are creatures of habit, and we definitely habitually do church as Christians.
Our singing should come from an overflow of a heart that has Christ enthroned. When we lose our passion or our sight of the object of our singing, we are not bringing glory to God. In Amos 5:23-24 the people lost sight of the object of their worship, to which God responded:
I hate, I despise your feasts, and I take no delight in Your solemn assemblies...
...Take away from me the noise of Your songs; to the melody of your harps
I will not listen. But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an
So God despises our singing and songs when it does not come from a
broken and contrite heart
(Ps.51), and He certainly doesn't accept it. But, sadly, we often sing in church on a Sunday, giving the appearance of worship, but our hearts are far from it.
Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? Who shall stand in His Holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false (
Ps.24:3-4). Only you can know if you are worshiping the Lord in song from a pure and right heart, just like only I can know when I am. A worship leader can't do that for us. God offers what we need, if we will
His kingdom and His righteousness in repentance and brokenness.
I woke up thinking about this "theology of congregational singing" at like 5:45am this morning. Its been really thought provoking all day, and I really want to look even more into God's Word about the specific privilege and topic of
Singing to the Lord
. Let's be intentional, expectant, passionately ascriptive, and biblically faithful as we gather week to week to Sing! Don't just sing to sing, but sing from a prepared and surrendered heart, in obedience to the scriptures, bringing glory to God alone!
Sunday, May 06 2012 @ 07:23 PM
Today at Harvest Granger we were blessed to have Pastor Moses from Harvest Liberia deliver the Word to us. It was a great day! The church felt excited today, and Pastor Moses challenged us greatly to submit ourselves to God in everything. His message was from James 4.
Pastor Moses taught me one of the worship songs they sing at His church in Liberia. I put it together with some of our team and we had a blast singing it with our church this morning. I couldn't help but dance at the end...far worse than those in Liberia, but it was unto the Lord:)
7 posts, 7 days: TWO
Saturday, May 05 2012 @ 07:12 AM
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
We use that verse all the time to convey that with Christ we can win a football game, dunk a basketball, be the best ballerina in the world...etc. You've seen the posters! It's all good. I'm glad Sunday School teachers around America want kids to know all things are for God's glory and that our strength comes from the Lord; even though they'll never dunk a basketball no matter how hard they put their faith in Jesus...It's a good poster though. HAHA
But what about Paul's original context of that verse? It has to do with contentment, which has to be so incredibly tied to a worshiper of Jesus. Basically, Paul was writing that He's been through a lot over the years. He's had high times and low times, rich times and poor times, times of hunger, distress, and need, and times when he's had an abundance of things (Ph4:12); But He writes,
"in whatever situation, I am to be content...I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!
(Ph.4:11,13)" Wow! That is such an incredible attitude example of what Christ does for the transformed, ever-sanctifying sinner, and a context that puts into perspective my inevitable need for
Christ who strengthens me!
God's been teaching me about contentment. Literally, 1 Timothy 6:6-16 has been popping up in my life so much lately. Paul again writes about contentment describing that we will grow greatly in our godliness, if we have contentment. We all want to grow in the things of God, but it's connected directly to contentment. Read the 1 Timothy passage for yourself, but basically Paul writes that if we realize we came into this world with nothing, and know that we are leaving it with nothing, anything more than nothing should make us content.
So why do we make it so hard on ourselves? Why do we so easily struggle with discontentment, which causes us to slow down our growth in godliness? Paul uses the example of desiring to be rich, which I'd say can translate to desiring anything more than Christ. We are tangible people, in a material world, with a sinful nature...we don't really have much going for us concerning our contentment. Thankfully, by the grace of God, we have been given eyes to see that the things of this world are empty, and that lasting fulfillment and true contentment can only be found in Jesus. But, that doesn't mean it comes easy, which is probably why Paul wrote "
fight the good fight of faith (
1Tim6:12)" within this passage.
Again, God's teaching me about contentment; First, about how I need it, and secondly, about how it is a main ingredient for a worshiper of Jesus. I read yesterday, "
if you are not a true worshiper, everything in your life will be spiritually out of sync."
When our worship is right, our hearts are in the right place, and right worship brings contentment, which accelerates our godliness. But where there is a worship problem, isn't it so true that there are spiritual problems!? Nothing can bring us to a greater recognition of God, a more passionate adoration of Jesus, and a more joyful lifestyle of worship than contentment in Christ alone.
Contentment realizes there would be nothing apart from Christ.
Worldly cravings bring discontentment, lack of faith, and even wandering from the very thing that saved our souls.
Our pursuit of
righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness
, and all of Christ-likeness starts with our contentment, which is a fight worth fighting.
Contentment and pursuit of righteous living always leads to adoration, worship, and a recognition of our divine, triune God.
7 posts, 7 days: ONE
Friday, May 04 2012 @ 06:23 AM
Okay, so I need to get back to blogging. I don't know if anyone cares to read what I write, but it helps me focus on the Lord and process things in my life and walk with Christ better. So, to help me get back in the groove, I got 7 posts over the next 7 days coming at you, starting now...
First ones on discipline. I need this. Lack of discipline is the reason I haven't blogged in so long; Why I haven't been as faithful in reading new things, pursuing truth, and carrying out vision in my ministry...The list could go on, but the truth be told, I need to get back to the healthy disciplines of my life.
I had a Jr. High teacher who used to make me write over and over again when I got in trouble:
Discipline is a virtue that makes punishment unnecessary.
I hated writing that, but its a pretty solid statement actually, especially when we apply it to our spiritual lives. When we lack the discipline to passionately pursue what God has called us to, we only hurt ourselves. God's given us all that we need for life and godliness, yet when we don't have enough discipline to pursue and focus our attention on what is pure, noble, righteous, above reproach, etc...sin creeps in. Where there is sin, we find punishment. Whether it be from earthly authorities, broken relationships, a spiritually dark period, or God Himself, we can all say we've faced some sort of "punishment" in our Christian walk based on our lack of pursuing holiness. Where punishment is needed, there was a lack of discipline.
Now I'm not suggesting that every time we make a mistake, God cracks the whip on us. Actually, most of the time our punishment is simply a repercussion of us choosing to do our own will. The Gospel is the greatest example that the ultimate punishment for sin was poured out on a spotless, perfect being so that in place of eternal punishment we might find Grace. Only through that Grace, are we given the ability to be
in His ways and example!
But discipline is hard.
Hebrews 12:11 says:
For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
Discipline is simply a huge part of our discipleship, which becomes a huge part of our worship. We are called to be like Christ, dying to ourselves daily, ridding ourselves of pride, seeking after the things of God, and seeking to glorify God in all we do. Sure it is hard, and can even be painful at times as the text says, but in the end it produces righteousness! Where we find righteousness, we draw closer to the person of Jesus, and are shaped more and more into the worshipers that God is seeking.
This post is for me more than anyone, as I seek to further my pursuit of Christ and His righteousness in my discipleship. May we all endure and pursue the training of discipline, that we might bear the lasting fruit of our great God.
GOD IS CONSTANT
Friday, March 16 2012 @ 10:05 AM
I know, I know, it's been too long since updating the old blog. Sorry the Lord is trying to teach me some things lately and honestly I have not had much inspiration or creativity for much...Sure its frustrating, but I believe the Lord can allow us to walk thru a time of desolation, questions, and the "desert" in order to stretch our worship of Him. I know God loves me, and all His children far too much to leave us where we are. We see in James 1 that our great God is interested in making us more perfect and more complete. Unfortunately, the perfecting comes thru "trials of various kinds," but fortunately we can trust that God is at work in our imperfect lives as we walk thru those trials or "desert" moments.
Anyways! God is so good, so faithful, and so constant. I joyfully acknowledge and proclaim His unchanging nature in the moments where I'm "prone to wander." I am imperfect, and my God is perfectly perfect, and that is why He and He alone is the Lord of my life.
"A major obstacle to creativity is wanting to be in the peak season of growth and generation at all times...but if we see the soul's journey as cyclical, like the seasons, then we can accept the reality that the periods of despair or fallowness are like winter-a resting time that offers us a period of creative hibernation, purification, and regeneration that prepares us for the births of spring."
Friday, January 13 2012 @ 02:34 PM
Amos 5:21-24 from The Message
I can't stand your religious meetings.
I'm fed up with your conferences and conventions.
I want nothing to do with your religion projects, your pretentious slogans and goals.
I'm sick of your fund-raising schemes, your public relations and image making.
I've had all I can take of your noisy ego-music.
When was the last time you sang to me?
Do you know what I want?
I want justice-oceans of it.
I want fairness-rivers of it.
That's what I want. That's all I want.
WHEN SANCTIFICATION SUCKS
Monday, December 19 2011 @ 10:26 PM
So, for the last 7 days our little girl, Callie has been stuck in the hospital due to E.Coli found in her blood. She will be here a total of 14 days...and yes, through Christmas:(. My wife hasn't really left the hospital, I've been here everyday and multiple nights, our 2 year old has had to come up daily for visits only to cry as she leaves mommy once again, and Callie is attached to a line pumping medicine into her veins, that allows us to move about 1 foot.
I don't know if you have kids, or if you've been through medical stuff with your kids, but there honestly is nothing worse for me. Seeing doctors and nurses hold your little girl down to put IV's in and do spinal taps and whatever other tests is terrible! Honestly, I really struggle with anger in the moment. And no one probably hates it more than Callie herself, as she fought and screamed to break loose from the sharp jabs and cold hands...
I hate it, but I let it happen. Callie hates it, but the outcome is hopefully good. Through the terrible affair, Callie received a line directly to her blood, where the infection could be killed at the source!
You catching the parallel? As my wife and I were trying to process all this the first day, my mother-in-law painted a good picture.
Our life with God is much the same. Sometimes, we go through some of the hardest, most painful, uncomfortable circumstances. Like Callie, we hate it and fight to get away from it...but it's no use! And if that wasn't painful enough, God, the one in charge, let's it happen.
This whole experience is giving me a good perspective on God. Though He may let the trial, or painful circumstance, or chastening happen, he doesn't stand by saying, "Boy you deserved this" or "yep that'll teach you." God loves me! God is my Father! Just as it hurts me to see Callie go through these things, it hurts God when His children suffer! But, just as I let the doctors work on Callie, God lets "work" happen on me, because the outcome is good!
1 Thessalonians 4:3 says:
"For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from..."
The passage above goes on with a laundry list of worldly sins that we are to abstain from. Each listed, are the very "infections" that caused us to once walk in darkness and still tempt our eyes, flesh, and pride. As God seeks to make us more Holy through His divine process of sanctification, he has to allow "surgery" to happen. It can hurt His children, make them mad, cause them to ask why, and all the while God feels that pain, but let's it happen for He knows the outcome is a killed "infection" and a better person.
Concluding, like my daughter is in the process of being physically "sanctified," I think I'm in the process of being spiritually sanctified. Not sure from what yet, and honestly, it sucks bad! But I'm thankful that I have a Father who looks on my struggling with love, and who knows what's best for His child concerning the outcome. I'm thankful that He loves me to much to leave me where I'm at, and that he's willing to love me when I'm angry, hurting, or questioning, because He knows what's best. I know that God is for me, even when it hurts.
God is good!
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Marriage Matters Resources
God At Work
Bible Reading Plan
Trent Griffith Blog
Micah Klutinoty Blog
Andrea Griffith Blog
Trent Griffith's Blog
Andrea Griffith Blog
The chief purpose of mankind is to glorify God by loving...
What We Believe
Biblical Soul Care
Party With the Pastors
Harvest Bible Fellowship
Marriage Matters Resources
God At Work
Bible Reading Plan
Trent Griffith Blog
Micah Klutinoty Blog
Andrea Griffith Blog
Copyright Harvest Bible Chapel - Granger
Powered by iMinistries, a
Church Website Content Management System