Widening the Gap

Widening the Gap

Jesus told us in Matthew 7:13-14 that the gate is narrow for the path which leads to life, but the road which leads to destruction is broad.  I believe we are living in an age where the church is trying to broaden the path which leads to life.  Many pastors are watering down the gospel, trying to tickle itching ears.  We have many preachers who preach prosperity, yet rarely preach a salvation message.  We have churches ordaining homosexuals as ministers and performing homosexual marriages.  We rarely hear messages that preach against cohabitating.

I have read several times that the abortion rate for those in the church is just as high as it is for those outside the church.  I have to wonder if many of these abortions are insisted upon by parents who are heavily involved in church, have a good reputation, and do not want anything to spoil it for them.  Perhaps they choose the approval and applause of man over the applause of the Lord. (John 12:43) They choose to murder an innocent child in order to hold on to their precious reputation in church, not even caring what God thinks of their heinous act.  I know a family who was heavily involved in their church when their daughter became pregnant by a man of another color.  Later, when a family member asked them how they were doing, they replied, “We took care of the ‘problem.’”  How terribly sad to see them put their reputation, not to mention their prejudices above the Word of God.

We are even letting teaching of evolution creep into our churches.  Some churches teach the Gap Theory.  This is the belief that millions of years passed between Genesis 1:1 and 1:2. Yet, Jesus refuted that belief in Mark 10:6 when He said that from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female.  Another thing to consider with the Gap Theory is that it allows death before the fall of Adam and Eve.

The Gap Theory says that dinosaurs lived millions of years ago, but that is not true.  Job 40:15 describes behemoth, whose description fits that of a dinosaur.  God says, “Look at behemoth, which I made along with you,” referring to Job.  This verse points out that Job lived during the time when dinosaurs lived.

You may wonder why I bring up evolution when I am talking about watering down the gospel and trying to broaden the path which leads to heaven.  It is because the teachings of evolution teach us that we evolved from apes.  If we buy into any evolutionary teachings, then we do not see ourselves, or anyone else, as being truly special.  The result is that we will believe that it does not matter if we live together before marriage, if we are gay, or even if we have an abortion.

But the core of our Christian faith is that “In the beginning GOD…”  We must hold to that truth and firmly stand on the gospel message that only Jesus can save us.  If we are hearing things at church which are contrary to the Bible, it is time to leave a “gap” in that church and find one that does not try to stretch the gospel into something that it is not.
© 2008, Stacy R. Miller

Who Is My Neighbor?

Who is My Neighbor?

We’ve all heard the parable of how the Good Samaritan was a good neighbor to the man who had been badly beaten. Several years ago, the question, “Who is my neighbor?” took on a whole new meaning for me.

It was on a Wednesday night, just after church. My daughter Rachel, who was around six years old at the time, had just been given a new necklace in her class. Once class was over, an older girl walked in and began admiring her necklace. Next, she began to manipulate Rachel in order to take the necklace from her. She said things like, “My sister is your best friend!” (She wasn’t.) “Let me have it….PLEASE!!!”

Rachel didn’t tell me what happened until we were driving home. She told me she felt like she was being mean if she didn’t let this older girl have the necklace.

I immediately turned the car around and headed to the house where girl lived and I got her necklace back. On the way home, Rachel told me she was shocked when I did that for her.

I used this situation as a learning tool, teaching her that she is not being mean by telling a person they can’t have something that belongs to her. We talked about how she will meet many manipulators in her lifetime. She needs to think about how to deal with them in a respectful, but firm, manner.

Now some may say I did the wrong thing, and they are entitled to their own opinion. I, for one, believe I did the right thing by seeing my own daughter as my “neighbor,” and showing her mercy. (Luke 10:36-37)

A few years later, we were doing a mom and daughter bible study. One of the questions was, “Can you remember a time when your Mom went to bat for you?” With no hesitation, Rachel said, “When you got my necklace back for me!” Over two years had passed since this incident took place. Though she knew it was only a necklace, and she would be able to live without it, knowing that I cared enough to get it back for her spoke volumes to her.

What a lesson it was on being a neighbor! Too often, we think of our neighbors as those outside our home. Sometimes they live under the same roof!

© 2014, Stacy R. Miller

Walking on Water

Walking on Water

I have always related well to Peter.  Here is a man who often speaks and acts before he thinks.  Though I hate to admit it, I am so much like him!

In Matthew 14:22-33, we find the story of when Peter walked on water.  Had I been in his shoes (or should I say ‘sandals?’), I am sure that had I would have started to doubt as those waves began to swell around me.  After all, I have always been a fearful around water.

I had my own “walk on water” experience many years ago when I was a new Christian.  I was on vacation with my parents.  I had instructed my brother to make sure that he went out and started my car at least once a day.  However, he did more than just start the car on one particular day.  He left the driver’s side door opened, then promptly popped the clutch, causing the car to lurch.  The door crashed into a tree stump, causing quite a bit of damage.  I was furious when I found out because at the time, I was only working part time.  I barely made enough to make the monthly payments on the car.  How would I pay for this?

When I went to church that weekend, I was still battling a lot of fear and anger.   Of all things, they began to sing, “The joy of the Lord is my strength.”  I was feeling anything but joyful.  I was so frustrated that the tears began to pour down my face.  I wanted to feel God’s peace and joy again, but I was just so angry!

The Lord gently spoke to me, “Am I not big enough to handle all of your problems?”  I decided to take my own “walk on water” and I waited to see how the Lord was going to work out this situation.

The very next day, my boss called me to offer me a full time position.  Within two weeks, I was driving a brand new car.  What a powerful lesson to me on overcoming doubt!

Is God calling you to walk on water?
© 2011, Stacy R. Miller

User Friendly

User Friendly

In today’s society of high-tech gadgets, we often hear the term “user-friendly.”  That is a good thing for those who, like me, are technically-challenged.  Yet, it is not so good when applied in a spiritual sense.

When we are user-friendly, we are like a magnet which attracts users.  If we are not careful, we will be like a used-up box of cereal – empty.

To avoid this, pick up the Book that is user-friendly – the Bible.  We need wisdom to help us be friendly and kind, yet not fall prey to being used.  Our Bible is filled with wise words which will help us avoid becoming user-friendly.
© 2008, Stacy R Miller

5 Loaves and 2 Fish

I was listening to a message this morning by Pastor James Merritt on the 5 loaves and 2 fish.  Something really stood out to me.  Speaking of the 12 baskets of leftovers, he said, “Jesus isn’t all I need; He is MORE than I need.”

Uniquely Me

Uniquely Me

Each of us has a unique place in this world.  We are each given a unique calling.

When we are pressed to do more than what God has called us to do, we fail to be the person God intended us to be.  Other times, we may fall into the trap of trying to be someone other than the person God intended us to be.  So when we try to be someone else, who is being me?

Looking at the flip side, there are times when we do less than what God intended.  In those times, we miss out on a grand adventure – that of being me!

© 2013, Stacy R. Miller

Judgment on the House of God

Here are two prophetic words given to two different people on how judgment is going to hit the house of God this year:

This Year is the Judgment Upon My House

and

Soon I Will Begin to Bring Down Pastors, First One Then Another

 

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