Hey Jealousy

shutterstock_68326738One of the things that can really trip us up in life is jealousy.  That can be a very, very dangerous thing.  And we are all prone to it.  It can have material elements – oh they have that, I want that!

It can have elements of money.  It can have elements of relationships – we can be jealous of others families, or friends, boyfriends/girlfriends, spouses, whatever.  We can be jealous of other’s jobs, or success or reputation, or a million different things that can plague us with jealousy.

We can be jealous of spiritual things.  Churches. Ministry.  Gifts.  Lots of things.  Today, in  Numbers 11: 28-30, we see Moses be tempted with jealousy:

Joshua son of Nun, who had been Moses’ aide since youth, spoke up and said, “Moses, my lord, stop them!” But Moses replied, “Are you jealous for my sake? I wish that all the Lord’s people were prophets and that the Lord would put his Spirit on them!” Then Moses and the elders of Israel returned to the camp.

Moses was the prophet for the people at this time, he was the one that the Lord spoke through.  Now here are these others, that are beginning to prophecy and Joshua gets jealousy for him.  He says, make them stop, that’s your job.  You’re the prophet not them!  It’s not right, you are the one that God speaks through.

Joshua loved Moses and respected Moses and was jealous for him.  We can all understand that.  But Moses didn’t play along in that same way.  Moses understood.

What mattered wasn’t him or his pride, it was God being at work.  So Moses, instead of getting jealous, focused upon how great it would be if all God’s people had that gift.

He wasn’t worried about himself, he was worried about what God could in people and through people.

Jealousy isn’t just about earthy things it can also be about spiritual things.  We as believers can be jealous of others.  We as preachers can be jealous of other preachers.  We as churches can be jealous of other churches.

You want to battle jealousy in your life?  Take the focus off  yourself, and place it upon God.  When we are looking at others and comparing them to ourselves, we will always be lacking or jealous. When we focus on God and what He wants, we see that I have what I have for purpose and so do you.

And I’m not going to worry about me, or you, or any of this. I’m going to focus on God.  And He’ll take care of us.

The key to jealousy is our focus.  Where is our focus today?

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones, and you thought our app, you can now watch our worship services from Asbury too!

Religion vs Relationship

Paul went many places sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In his time, he literally traveled across the world, telling folks about the good news of Jesus.

But, one of the more interesting places that he went was went he went to Athens. Athens was a place that was defined by religion. There were literally places to worship everywhere across the city.

Athens didn’t have too little religion. It had too much religion.

What it was missing was not religion, it was the truth that is found in Jesus Christ.
Listen to what happens to Paul today in Acts 17:22-25:

So Paul, standing in the midst of the Areopagus, said: “Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are very religious. For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, “To the unknown god.” What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.

Paul says – you don’t need religion. You need relationship. Relationship is what matters. Relationship is the key.

God is not wanting you to be “religious” today. He wants you to fall in love with His son, Jesus Christ. And if you fall in love with Jesus, feel His life and His grace within you today, the religion question will take care of itself.

Don’t worry about religion today. Focus on Jesus. His life. His grace. His power. Focus on that. And the rest will take care of its self.

God doesn’t need more religious folks out there. He needs more folks that love Jesus, and want to love others like Jesus.

If we, as the church, and as Christians do that, we will have the religion that God really wants us to have.

Chasing after Jesus. Everything starts there.

Today, may we chase after Him, and after that relationship with Him with every moment of our lives!

And in that, may we find true life!

Don’t forget, you can click here to download Asbury’s mobile app and read these devotionals, as well as listen to my sermons on your smart phones.

Mindful

One of today’s Psalms was one that shows the power of God, but also shows our place in creation.  In Psalm 8 it says this:

4 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, *
the moon and the stars you have set in their courses,
5 What is man that you should be mindful of him? *
the son of man that you should seek him out?
6 You have made him but little lower than the angels; *
you adorn him with glory and honor;

Think about what an awesome God that God is.  He made all that is, both seen and unseen.  He created everything that has being.  Scripture tells us that He holds all things together.

He is the author of life, of salvation, of everything.

He is the great God of the universe. The God of the Cosmos. The God of all.

His greatness is too much for our feeble minds to understand.  His power is and knowledge is too great for us to even fathom.

He is God of all.

He made all.

He.  Is.  God.

Wow.

And, He wants to know us. Think about that. . . . .

The God of the universe, the God of the cosmos. The God of all.  His greatest desire it to be in relationship with us. Wow.

He has made us for relationship and for love.  He has made us to know us.  He has made us to love us.  He has made us for Himself.

Your greatest purpose in life is to know and love the creator God.

The vast God of the universe, the amazing God of creation, the infinite God of everything, He wants to know you.  Personally.  Deeply.  Loving you.

Of all the things that blow my mind, this is among the greatest.

This awesome God desires relationship with us.  Wow.

Today, know who He is. And know who we are. And marvel at the fact that God Almighty is a personal God for us each.

May we spend time today knowing Him better.