Why are you here?

It’s been a long time since I blogged! But to make up for that, here’s an extra long one! Hold on tight, this could be a bumpy ride for some…
I have been thinking a lot lately about what it is we are doing here, as Christians. This weekend I was lucky enough to attend an event called “LOST- a youth event held in Limavady. The theme this year was “hope”. But more on that later.
One thing really stuck out to me, and it wasn’t even about the main theme, it was actually a completely different point altogether. It was about why we are here. Why we were there. What we were doing.
(DISCLAIMER!!!

I have no idea what I’m doing!
I am a Christian. I try my best to follow Christ’s teaching and try to live out his love for me. I hope that I do ok. I hope that people will “see” Christ in me. But in all honesty… I’m a rookie. I’m just muddling along and I hope that maybe what I babble out can help someone somewhere…)
The speaker at the weekend talked about religion and faith. He mentioned that Christianity and faith aren’t about Protestant and catholic. It’s about trusting our Lord and saviour. There are loads of Christians in the world and yeah, we differ in our views of some things but at least 1/3rd of people believe in Jesus. Which is cool but it also lead me to think, well, what about everyone else?
I am a strong believer that “street preachers” scare people away from Christianity. Like, even as a Christian, I fear people preaching on the streets shouting “REPENT!” It’s embarrassing to me! I feel that if people are ever going to come to know Jesus it will be through someone meeting them where they are. Finding out what’s going on in their lives and showing them how Jesus can help. Not by shouting at them to repent!

We, as Christians, need to meet people where they are. Find out about them, CARE about them and ultimately love them.

Jesus met people. He spoke to them. He didn’t just preach and quote the bible at them. He learned about them. He loved them.
So many Christians are merely focused on sharing the gospel, which is great, but I feel it’s more important to share LOVE.

Jesus didn’t just go to churches and prayer meetings, he went to parties. He mixed with all sorts of people. Jesus was a cool guy! Water into wine? Hanging out with rebels and criminals? He wasn’t what we would consider a “holy joe”! He got out there and he shared his love with EVERYONE! Not just the lonely person at school, not just that lonely woman in church, but CRIMINALS! I’m not saying you have to go and find a jail and speak to bad guys, but Jesus loved everyone- the outcasts. The church has such a bad reputation for hating and condemning minority groups such as homosexuals, prostitutes and even those of different religions. This is not what Jesus did! He spoke to sinners and he LOVED them. He didn’t have to read huge chunks of scripture at them he simply said, on many occasions, “your sins are forgiven”, “you are loved”. He made people who felt worthless in society, those people who were rejected by everyone they knew, he spoke to them and he loved them and they knew that he was special, that he was different and they changed.
My point is, “why are we here?”. Why are you here? Why are you a”Christian”? Are you just here so that you can wear the badge and please your parents? Are you just here so you can Lord it over everyone else because you are holy? Are you here so you can make people feel small? Or are you here to make a change? Are you here so that you can touch others’ hearts and bring them to know the joy that you know? Because if that’s why you’re here, you need to start loving. Stop preaching, stop telling others their faults and failings and listen. Listen to what they struggle with, listen to what scares them and listen to their story… Then you can help. Even if it’s just a silent prayer, you don’t even have to tell them you’re a Christian Right away. Just show them kindness and love.
We are here to change the world. We are here to build Gods Kingdom. What can you do to start?

Summary:

Why are you a Christian?

Jesus loved everyone, not just “good people”

Jesus was a cool guy who liked a bit of a shin-dig and he hung around with, what many would consider “the wrong crowd”

We should love everyone BY LISTENING to them and meeting them where they are
((I highly recommend listening to “If I was Jesus” a song by Paul Colman ))
As always please let me know your thoughts and / or any questions. And God Bless! (Also check out my other blog posts and, even though they’re old, feel free to comment!!)

Advice to a friend…

Hebrews 13.8

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.

 

My friend is facing some tough times at school. She feels like her friends just don’t “get her” any-more and she feels like darkness surrounds her on all sides…

I compiled a bunch of advice that was given to me when I have been in hard times and I thought I’d share it with you guys too…

 

 

 You are amazing. And so strong. Keep fighting this. Don’t let the devil and his darkness win!
I sometimes feel so lost and overwhelmed by what’s happening to Chloe that I just can’t see a way out, like everything around me is falling to pieces and that darkness is trapping me on all sides. I feel alone and scared and so so sad.
I don’t know if that is what its like for you… but if its anything like that then I know it is horrible.

But we are never alone. God is always here and he never stops listening to us. Our pain is his pain. He sees every tear. And when we are sad, his heart breaks for us. He never leaves us to manage on our own. He is right there just waiting for us to say “here god, I can’t do this any more. Take everything. All this crap in my life because I can’t hack it any more”.
The most amazing part is, not only does he lift up that weight off your shoulders, he carries you too.

True, friends fall away from one another. When I was in upper sixth I fell out with Kerry and shauna in September because of a blog I wrote.. it was about how scared I was that two of my best friends (ie. Kerry and shauna) weren’t Christians and had no real interest in god. They got offended and refused to talk to me. I apologized again and again and tried to explain that I meant no harm. That I had written the blog because I cared and loved them… but they wouldn’t listen
They still don’t talk to me…
It broke my heart and I felt like I would never be happy again
But sometimes friends grow apart.

And no matter what, God has a plan. Even though it feels like the darkness and pain will never end. Even when you ask yourself “what’s the point anymore?” (As I do so often) he has a plan. He’s teaching you. He’s going to use you. Because he has an amazing plan and a beautiful future mapped out for you…

Just love your friends. No matter what. Try to take an interest in what they’re talking about. Be happy for them.
“Kill them with kindness” like Jesus so often did. Love them.

And remember that you are never alone. You have your family and your God (and me ;))

Love you lots and praying for you xxx

God and Bad

Romans 8.18

for I consider that the sufferings of the present time are not worthy to be compared to the glory which shall be revealed in us

Romans 8.28

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose

 

So we all have those days (or weeks, or months or years…) when everything is going wrong. It feels like the world is against us and we just keep hitting brick wall after brick wall.

Nothing is going right. Nothing seems to happen the way it’s supposed to.

 

It’s times like this that we can start to doubt if there is a God… or if he is there, why is he letting this happen?

 

I have questioned this myself… If these circumstances are a test of faith, why am I failing? Why did he trust me with this? What made him think I could do this?

 

It’s important to remember in times like this that God has a plan for us (Jeremiah 29.11). And that even when things are going wrong, he has it all in hand… even when it seems like all these bad things are happening, God will turn it around and make it good.

 

It’s like maths… two negatives make a positive. 

 

So when bad things happen again and again… just remember that God is going to turn all those bad things into good things… you just need to wait and get to the other side of the equals sign.

Another “Pslam”

God you created all things

Thank you for everything you do

Thank you that you know more about me than even I know about me

Than you that you never leave me. Ever.

God, when I struggle, help me to trust you enough to let you take my problems

I want to trust you

I don’t want to be alone

Father, you love me. You guide me and help me

God, I want to be more like you

I want to please you.

When I feel down and tired

Lift me and help me to fight on

I love you God and I want to serve you with all that I have

Help me O’ God.

Why Me?

“For I know the plans that I have for you” declares the Lord “plans for good, not evil, to give you a hope and a future”

-Jeremiah 29.11

 

“I am with you always”

-Matthew 28.20

 

“I will never leave you or forsake you”

-Hebrews 13.5

 

I know several people who are going through tough times at the moment, myself included! Sometimes when we go through trials and difficult situations (ok, actually, a lot of the time) we ask ourselves, others, God… “Why Me?”

I have actually found myself asking this question a lot lately.

It sometimes seems like the world is against us and that everyone is out to get us. Sometimes we can be knocked down to the point where we just don’t see the point in getting back up again. it can seem as though we are drowning in a sea of worry, doubt and other dilemmas that happen in life… But what is key is that we do keep going.

Having a supportive family and friendship circle is my help. They constantly reassure me and tell me that everything will be ok and that God has a plan. 

Even though you’re a Christian, it can sometimes be helpful to be reminded that God has a plan and that everything is in his hands. We sometimes get swept up by daily life and the problems and pressures of this world. We can easily lose perspective and lose sight of what truly matters…

My mum has been a total inspiration to me lately. A constant encourager and helper through the tough times. A true blessing!

She reminds me daily that I am safe, blessed and loved by her, my family and, most importantly, God. She reminds me that even though this is tough, Jesus is always with me, he always listens and I can do all things through him, because he is my strength.

She told me this morning, just before i got on the train, “You are in Gods hands”

and she’s right. 

I don’t need to be afraid. Lonely. Sad. Stressed. Because I am safe, loved and blessed. I am held in the Hands of The Mighty and Eternal God. My Rescuer and Saviour. My God. My Father. My Friend.

 

 

A short “psalm”

God I ask you “Why me?”

why won’t you answer?

are you just going to let me drown in my troubles?

I have asked again and again

I need help and I cannot do this alone

I give up. I am beat.

 

My Child. I love you

you are mine.

I have heard you and I am weeping over you

But I have never and will never leave you

I am here, forever.

Give me your troubles, your burdens. I can manage

Together we can do this.

 

But God… Father… Why?

Why must I struggle?

Why are you challenging me? 

Why must I feel like this?

Why can’t you stop this?

 

You can do this. I know you can, because I made you and I know everything about you.

You are stronger than this.

I love you and I am here, every step of the way

I will carry you

I have a plan for you. It’s a great plan.

Just hang in there and trust me.

 

-amen

 

 

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Psalms

So I haven’t blogged in well over a year, But I have been writing.

Over the summer I was inspired by the Psalms, particularly those by David. And so I began to write my own. It’s more poetry or like mini prayers. But I intend to share some on here… so… enjoy!

 

 

Lord you are amazing

Beyond anything I could imagine

Thank you for your love 

You forgave me when no one else could

you loved me when even I couldn’t

You never leave me

you never fail me

there is nothing I cannot do with you

You are My God

The one and only

My King

My saviour

My Friend.