Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Christian Thoughts Book Now Available

Would you like to become closer to God? How about a common-sense view of what the Bible says? Whether you're a long-term Christian or are new to the faith, this book will give you insight into increasing your spirituality, improving your relationships, understanding the Bible and help you get closer to God. This book is a compilation of the best posts from the 'Christian Thoughts' Blog, found at

After two+ years of blogging, the (Best of) Christian Thoughts book is now available at No more rifling through archives or trying to find that post from a couple of years ago. The best articles are all available now in one place. Buy yours today!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Talking to God

Aaron Halvorson said (of my article Getting Closer to God):

That's good stuff. After reading it I thought that most of it should have been incredibly obvious to someone who has been a Christian nearly their entire life. It is unfortunate how much common sense is lost sitting in a church pew every Sunday. I always thought that a formula such as praying to God 5 times a day wasn't the answer to getting closer to God, but I have never thought of it in these incredibly simple terms.

I know that sounds stupid. But I have read the entire Bible and never came to the conclusion "God Likes to Talk." I've never heard that in a sermon either. It's both incredibly simple and incredibly profound.

I've spent a lot of time wondering why God doesn't seem to talk to me and not enough time realizing He probably actually wants to.


I think it's an 'incredibly simple' concept (as you mentioned) that most people tend to overlook. God does want to talk to us. As a matter of fact, God likes to talk to us. And He definitely listens. Some scriptures:

And the LORD said unto Moses, Come up to me into the mount...(Exo 24:12(a))
For thus hath the LORD spoken unto me...(Isa 31:4(a))
And the LORD heard the voice of your words, when ye spake unto me; and the LORD said unto me, I have heard the voice of the words of this people, which they have spoken unto thee: they have well said all that they have spoken. (Deu 5:28)

You know, there was a time in the Christian's life when openly and regularly 'talking' to God was the norm, rather than the exception. Early church fathers emphasized the need to pray unceasingly (1 Thessalonians 5:17), regularly come to God with confessions, requests and devotion. When did we lose that?

God says that many times He does not answer our prayers because we pray for selfish reasons, so that we can satisfy our own selfish desires. Jam 4:3 says, "Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts." That's a pretty harsh assessment of us, but I think it is pretty accurate (who among us wouldn't want a brand new car or big, beautiful home?).

However, despite all this, I believe that God welcomes our conversation. The best way to think of His relationship with us is to imagine if you are a father who has a son (easy if this actually applies to you).

You love your son. You've seen him come from his mother's womb and watched him grow. You love him so much, you provided for him, changed his dirty diapers, patiently consoled him when he cried and held his hand on the first day of school. As a child, he repays your efforts mostly with demands for more, taxes your patience, takes all of your free time, and takes a good portion of your money and strength. But you still love him. You know that he is a child and, as he grows, he will come to appreciate what you've done for him. You don't expect him to know the level of sacrifice and commitment you've given to him - which you gave willingly - and you are pleased to see him continually grow and mature. As a teenager, he becomes somewhat rebellious, doing things you don't want him to do, associating with people you don't like and getting further away from the values you placed in him. You worry about him, try to talk to him as he scowls at you, ignores you and goes stubbornly on his way.

As your child becomes a man, he starts his own family, has his own career and moves far away from you. After a few years, maybe, just maybe, as a maturing adult, he finally values all you have done for him and decides you really did love him after all (though you didn't get him that sports car he wanted for his 18th birthday). He decides to cultivate a relationship with you (or at least isn't so resistant to your efforts), calls sometimes, brings his family by and your relationship finally develops to the point where you speak regularly, he asks your advice and freely shares his heart's concerns.

That son represents our attitude towards God. As 'baby' Christians, we make incessant demands and tax God with our desires, our need for attention and our very unreasonableness. As we grow older, we 'need' Him less (we think), become more independent and headstrong and test the boundaries of our faith. We question who God is, what He is about and why He has to have sovereignty over our lives. We 'move away' to distant spiritual shores as we pursue our own passions and our own, selfish, desires. At some point along our spiritual journey, we finally, finally, finally 'get' what God has done for us. We recall how He supported us in all our endeavors, helped us to meet our husbands or wives (or got us out of a really, really bad marriage), remember the jobs He got us, how we never overly suffered or got down too low. We especially remember the hard times and how He sustained us until we could find our security and peace.

And then we begin to cultivate our relationship with Him. We talk to Him voluntarily, instead of by demand, begin to share our thoughts with Him and even seek His advice.

And this is what He really wants! He doesn't mind your requests, helping you deal with your problems or assisting you in getting that next job, but what He really wants is you. An honest, open-hearted, genuine relationship with you. A voluntary relationship with you. Not an on command appearance on Easter Sunday or Christmas, but a full-time, loving, worshiping, healthy, whole relationship with you. Just like that father wants with his son. The Bible abounds with scriptures about our Father - how if our natural fathers give good gifts, our Heavenly father gives even better, about how He loves us, about how He will provide for us, give us peace, protect our sanity - yet we look on our relationship with Him as an obligation, as a burden and, finally, as something that is more trouble than it's worth.

We are so wrong! If only we realized the depth of love our Father has for us, we would be running to Him instead of running away. Just think again of the example of the father and son above. That father probably had years of great advice he could have given the son, financial help he could have offered, resources and blessings that the son couldn't even imagine - if his son had only asked. Or even been around for casual conversations - because don't most 'big' revelations come between two people when they are talking about the weather or school or, whatever? That's how God is - the more we talk to Him, the more we understand Him. The closer we are to Him, the more He tells us. And the more time we spend with Him, the more we are open to receive His love, His blessings, His advice and be a recipient of His many gifts. God can't tell you too much about anything if your conversation is limited to five minutes a day (if it's even that much). He needs more of your time, more of your attention and more of your love. Having conversations with God is as much for you as it is for Him.

God loves you. And He wants to talk.

So what are you gonna do about it?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Questions about Cheating, Marriage and the Other Woman

Hello all:

I've been on a bit of a hiatus due to my full-time school and work schedule, but there are some reader questions that have been particularly haunting me. Here they are with my responses. (Please feel free to add your own advice, commentary, etc.)

From: The Other Woman

Anonymous said...

I have been married for 24 years now with two children ages 23 and husband left me but i know in my heart he was cheating all the signs were there, he no longer desired me and he was always abusive to me which really escalated before he left, he denies there is another woman, but he became very upset the day i found the number in the cellphone and called it and deleted the number he asked for his number back and left the following day, he has not taken all of his things yet he does not want the neighbors to know he has moved out, but yet he is not there anymore..(strange) i am going along with it for now, but there is no relationship between he and I anymore and he wants to be able to come in and stay from time to time when he feels like basically he is holding me back while he waits to see if this thing between he and the new woman will work out because i think she is married as well..never the less, i feel i have been reborn..God has given me peace after days of crying and depression i was devastated and i can not say i did not do some things that he did not appreciate, after years of abuse i turned to prescription drugs and i became addicted..i begged and pleaded him to help me but he would not he saw that as his way out. but let me add this is not the first affair we have dealt with he has cheated on me two times prior to this that i know for God is so Good, because after finding this blog, i feel totally free, i do not wish any bad luck on him i wish the best but i know the relationship is not going to work because this is one of the oldest tricks of the enemy, grass always seem greener, so Ladies plz respond and provide me encouragement this is still young for me and i am praying my way thru

12:21 PM


I feel your pain. I know what it's like to love someone and try to honor that relationship with what you've learned about God and how best to be a Christian. However, your husband has made the decision easier for you - he left you. Your role is to pray, seek the comfort of God and ask how you are to handle the situation. The goal is for you to have peace. The optimal marriage state is for two people to be working together, trying to make things work, communicating, spending time, raising any children and incorporating Godly principles into their marriage. If your marriage does not have those qualities, it is not where it should be. I cannot say for sure whether or not you two should be together, but I know for absolute sure that God is going to work this out in your best interests. I can promise you that. I also promise you this: if you seek Him and obediently do His will, He will honor and bless you in ways beyond compare. I will be praying for you. Please let me know how this turns out.


From: How Not to Cheat

Anonymous said...

i need some help... PLEASE ANYONE!!! I just found out that my girlfriend of 4 years is cheating. She did it before and I forgave her and then she did it again and i forgave her again..and again. This time its more serious cause i found out that she was close to sexual with him and its the same guy that she cheated with the first time. I am a Christian and so is she and we are active in our Church.. can someone please give me some Christian advice please.. its like im dying here...

10:43 PM


As a prior single woman for a number of years, I became intimately familiar with all the games, ups and downs and challenges facing Christian singles. Here is what I see: your girlfriend still has feelings for the gentleman which whom she had sex. You are right to forgive her, but you are not obligated to stay with her. True repentance (on her part) would have been to walk away from him and leave him alone. She is telling you - with her actions - that she is not capable of doing that. You are meant for better. Behavior does not magically change when you are married. Behavior changes through a close relationship with God, fasting and prayer, repentance and a true desire for change. I don't believe your girlfriend has a true heart for repentance.

My advice is for you to leave her and spend some close, one-on-one time with God. Allow Him to minister to you, allow your friends to comfort you, pray daily and fast and, if at the end of that you feel like God is leading you back to her, then so be it. If not, then it is time for you to move on. I will be praying for you. God bless and please let me know how this turns out.


From: How Not to Cheat

i have been cheating on my boyfriend for a few months now im a christian hes a chritstian and i dont know how to tell him and weather i should i love him and want to stay with him. What do i do?

7:58 AM


Why are you with your boyffriend? You say you don't know if you love him. What, then, is the point? I don't mean to sound harsh, but I simply don't understand why you'd stay with someone of whom you are not even sure how you feel. You sound like an intelligent, likeable person. I would not want you to be in a situation that is not going anywhere or causing your boyfriend harm through your behavior.

My suggestion for you would be for you to spend some time alone. My best guess is that you have needs that are not being met by your boyfriend nor your lover. Honestly, there are some things only God can heal and it seems that you need Him more than any human man.

Think about what I have said. I will be praying for you. God bless you in your time of need.


From: How Do You Know He's the One?

Jlynn said...

I'm in a relationship that I'm not happy with but my partner seems to be head over heels in love with me.

I feel like if I end it I'm doing something terribly wrong because it will hurt him, but I'm miserable staying in it. The last thing I want to do is hurt him. I also feel like I'm doing wrong in Gods eyes as well if I end the relationship. Any advice.

12:35 PM

qtee1113 said...

yeah any advice for jlynn??? I am in the same boat and would looooove the imput!

5:13 PM

JLynn and qteel113:

Well, ladies, first of all, feel blessed that you have someone in your life who values you! I hear so much about women who want to make things work with guys who are disinterested that it's a nice change to hear that some of our sisters have found good men. Even if those men are not for you...

My advice to you two is simple: if you are not happy, then leave. Why do I say this? Because, if you desire sexual intimacy and children in a God-given relationship, then you need to be free to marry the man who will fulfill those dreams for you. Visualize the man you want to be there for you when you are sick, whose features you want to see in your children's faces, who you want to see in family pictures and want to grow old with. Is that man the one you're with now? No? Then you need to go.

If it helps any, remind yourself that you are doing him a great disservice by remaining with someone with whom you are not compatible. You are depriving him of meeting someone who will love and value him for who he is, as well as depriving yourself of meeting the man who is meant for you. Shoot for the stars, ladies - married or committed life with the partner of your dreams. You deserve no less!