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Cant hide Why we cant hide the gospel But Illjust give God a smallbit Why God wants our all Free to Serve Service for God

You and I are /// As we read verse 13 we see this comparison between Christians and Salt. Why?. Salt used to Flavor = Christians used by God to tell people about God (to avor the world with the gospel) thats or duty and it should be our desire. We arent told here yea if your Tuesdays are a rubbish day just be salt on a Wednesday or if you feel like people are judging you dont be salt, dont tell people about God. We are toldyou areits pretty strong words but thats in short how to make this life count, by willingly telling people about what God has done for you and what He can do. He doesnt mean it to be boring (which its not btw) or force you into it He just wants you to do it because you love Him and want Him to use you. Inverse 13 it says: But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. WOW now thats pretty scary, God says if the salt (metaphorically us) has lost its saltiness (dont do our duty) it isnt of use. Just for the record God doesnt say He abandons us or leaves us He is saying however that He cant use us to fulllour true potential and purpose if we dont want Him to. He wont force us its our loss. Heres a radical thought, God doesnt need us. Think about it we cant save anyone, we cant do anything without God but in His amazing grace He wants to use you and me to join Him in his work to bless us. As Christians its what we are called to do. Cant hide /// Ok God isnt a God who wants to clobber you every time you mess up, I mean He could but His mercy is so great and His Grace so massive that when you mess up He wants to comfort and forgive you, Hes not a God who hates you God is love. As a result of this love He doesnt want to shove you into serving Him but He knows whats best for you His way of service is the best way. In fact its the only way. In Jeremiah 29 v 11 it says: For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not

1.W HY C AN T W E A LL J UST L IGHTEN U P ?

Salt and Light Matt 5v13 You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. 14You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthews mission statement The book of Matthew was written by Matthew (quite obvious) who was a tax collector before He became a Christian but now was one of Jesus disciples. He wrote this to a mainly Jewish audience in Judea in around about AD70. His Mission statement and his reason for writing this book was to convince the Jewish people that Jesus was the Messiahakathe One they had been waiting for and the Savior. He does this by taking them back through Jesus family tree but we are going to focus on thekindasecond part of his mission, which was to tellpeople how if they believed in God then He should reign in all areas of their lives. I have four really easy points for you which are;

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to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. He knows the only way you can have full satisfaction and peace is full surrender to Him and in verse 14 it says this. 14You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. God knows if youre saved that light of what God has done for you should resonated and explode from your lives it should shine to the world. God has given you the huge privilege of serving Him that light of belonging to God cant be hidden let it shine. We were created for a life devoted to God. We cant hide this light of God its too important. But Ill just give God a small part /// 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. History lesson. Go back to the time when Matthew wrote this book, about AD70 and walk into a typical Jewish house and take a look around. We see loads of stuff but we also see a lamp sitting on a stand, keep that in mind. This is what this verse talks about. See, this lamp on a stand signied Gods light in all parts of the persons life. However when they wanted to do something that they didnt want God to see, something a bit dodgy, they covered it. They were trying to shut out God from certain parts of their life. This is the part where I come clean I was the guy who tried to hide that light. I tried to as the Bible says in verse 15 put a bowl over my lamp so only I and the people I wanted to know knew I was a Christian. I didnt want God to have full control in all my life. I really regret that I wasted those years. Lift that bowl and put your lamp on a stand. God wants full control of your life because if you lift that bowl thats covering the light of God in your life God will spread through you, shine from you and will illuminate the world bringing glory to Him. He wants you to spread that

good news of Salvation so everyone will see it. This is our mission to tell everyone about the gospel. God wants to use you to help bring people to Him. For me the fear of being weird or uncool made me try to keep God out of parts of my life (I now realize I am anyway) but you dont have to worry or be scared about what God has done for you. He gave up everything for us without question He sent Jesus to die for us. He understands you fears and worries but he says fear not. He actually says fear not 365 times in the Bible, one for each day, so everyday no matter what comes up you can say that you dont have to fear. With Him we dont need to worry Hes got it under control. Free to serve /// Right about now you might be questioning and thinking so if God has made me free by saving me whats allthis about being called a servant? How are we free if we are servants? WellGod has given you a choice to serve Him and show people your light or to hide it. God gave you that freedom because He wants you to choose to serve simply because you love Him because of what He did for you on the cross. Verse 16 says: let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. He doesnt say I will twist your arm so you WILL shine whither you like it or not. He simply says let. If you love me let your light shine so that all the glory will go to God your Father in heaven. You and I are called to live for God in everything as Christians because it is our duty but God will not force you into it but He knows that its the best for you and wants to work through you. You cant hide the light of God its too bright, too special too important to hide so dont try or you will regret wasting time hiding it just let it shine. You have a choice a free choice to give all you have to God or take a back seat, kick back and not be involved missing out on all God has for you. God gave you a free choice so He could use you because you love Him. God has made you free. He gave up all He had for you and me, do you not agree the least we can do is give up all we have for Him? Will we stand and be counted for God?

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We are always to show God in our lives and serve Him. The thing is tho not serving and giving God our all is way more serious than forgetting to buy coffee, its not even comparable. Not serving God results in an unsatised Christian walk that is shaky and full of doubt. Not giving Christ our all means we miss out on so much that God has for us. He wants to bless us and use us. Luke 11v28 He replied, Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it. So lets not be Christians who settle for a soft seat and not seek the real purpose of our relationship with Christ but lets serve Him and enjoy all the blessing He has for us by giving our all to God.

2.O HHHHH Y ES Y OU H AVE T O O RDER C OFFEE ...


So I walk into a coffee shop and quickly spy a seat, so I go over and sit down. I whip out my laptop and start typing to my hearts content and generally seeing whats going on in the world. Theres nothing wrong with that, right? Its normal (well for me anyway). So you can imagine my shock when I start getting weird looks from the staff and some customers, which I put down to the fact I have a ridiculous beard but soon realize it isnt that. I start to fret and try to gure out, while key bashing to make it look like Im typing, why they are looking at me. I didnt do anything wrong, its not like I walked in with dirty shoes or ponging. I dont get it. After about forty ve minutes of this I am completely bafed. Then I see the staff have a conversation and one of them come my way. I look away and try to hide. They stop at my table and say Sir if your not going to order anything then you have to leave. Oops, ohhhhhh yes you have to order coffee. Well done Chrissy you ofcially look like an idiot. Theyre weird looks are now justied and now I understand (I eventually ordered a latte and it was pretty good). This made me think tho, is this like some of us as Christians. Do we give our lives to Christ and come into a place where we have a eternal link with God, through His Sons death for us, but sit down too quickly and kick back with our laptop, check whats going on with the world but forget about the main purpose of being in a relationship with God which is to tell everyone about Him and how He saves. Do we settle for half of the blessing God has in store for us rather that it all because we forget what were meant to do, just like me forgetting the main purpose of my coffee shop visit, to have coffee. We are to do everything to the glory of God 1st Corinthians 10v31 says So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

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3.W ORK O UT
Gym, the word strikes fear into many (including me). It needs to be done tho and it was one of these gym days that God decided to teach me something. Something I thought I knew but then realized quickly that I didnt fully understand. It was that God is HUGE. Doing my regular work out (if you can call it that) I decided to toss it up a bit and do some bench pressing at the heaviest weight I could, which you can probably guess already was a great idea, so the weight was upped to 95kg and away I went with the supervision of another guy just incase I completely fail and end up squishing myself like a pancake (which was not the desired outcome by the way of the training). Long story short I managed about 2 sets and I was wrecked, like properly ruined. I came home and started to wonder how much the strongest man ever could bench. Good old Google answered my question, 362.873896 kg is the heaviest benched. Already I feel pretty feeble, I can bench less than 3 times as much. Then my mind started to wonder, if God holds stars and planets in the sky, then He must be really powerful, well how much do they weigh? Again Google provided the answer. I Googled how much does the sun weigh? This is what came up. The mass of the sun is 1,989,881,989,610,210,000,000,000,000,000 kg. WAW!!! MInd is blown. Thats crazy and thats only one star never mind all the stars, all the planets, everything else and all the stuff we dont even know about. Oh and just for the record there is about 100 billion known stars in our galaxy, and by the way there are hundreds of billions of galaxies in the universe with hundreds of billions of stars in them with a mass of more than our sun because in fact our sun is pretty small. To think that God holds all these in His hand and its no struggle.

I then I found myself asking, So Chrissy do you still think you still think you can just live as if God isnt that big? Do you still want to just kinda bring God out when you need Him now that you have seen even only this small bit of how huge God is? Im going to be honest, realizing that God is this huge (and Hes way bigger than even this) blew me apart. God is massive and immensely powerful, its crazy how big God is, words cant contain how huge He is. Isaiah 40 says this about how big God is; v12 Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens? Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket, or weighed the mountains on the scales and the hills in a balance? It is talking about how no one can do these things but God. Like measure the waters in the hollow of His hand (btw notice Hes using one hand) and the breadth of His hand measure the heavens. Then it goes on to say; 21 Do you not know? Have you not heard? Has it not been told you from the beginning? Have you not understood since the earth was founded? 22 He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in. 23 He brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing. 24 No sooner are they planted,

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no sooner are they sown, no sooner do they take root in the ground, than he blows on them and they wither, and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff. 25 To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal? says the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry host one by one and calls forth each of them by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing. Emm yea reading this kinda puts us in our place God isnt tiny, we are. We arent big Hes humungous, bigger than we could ever imagine. Yet, He sent His only Son to give His life so that through Him we could be saved from hell, death and sin. Thats amazing, that the God of heaven, this huge God of the universe would send His Son to take all the punishment for us and die just so that us as tiny humans would be saved. Thats something special. How could we ever try and make our God small?

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(v23). So why the wine and myrrh? In that period of time there were not general anaesthetics or paracetamol and you couldnt pop to a chemists and get something for pain relief but instead they used wine. The wine was given as a drink to deaden the pain and in this case offered as a pain relief of crucixion but Jesus refused it. Why?Jesus refused pain relief because He wanted to take the whole weight of our sin, He didnt do any half hearted job, He paid it in full and bore the massive pain of all our sin while He hung there WAW!!!!!!!!!! ok thats life changing. Jesus literally refused to have the pain of dying for our sin relieved or deadened because His love for us was so great. I always knew Jesus paid it in full and bore all of the huge pain for our sin but this actually just enforces it. It makes my mind explode all over again at the fact He was offered pain relief and refused it. For example if I was being crucied for something I had done wrong, trust me I would of wanted painkillers but Jesus was being crucied, punished for our sins, and He refused it..Im speechless So why the myrrh then. The myrrh was mixed with the wine. The Romans did it because as people died they gave them something that symbolized death e.g. myrrh, because myrrh was used in burial as fragrance and symbolised death. Can you see it yet? Even in this picture as Jesus refuses the myrrh we see that Jesus would defeat death. He refused the myrrh which symbolizes death showing that He would not stay dead but would die and rise again. He refused to stay dead but instead rose again for us.Jesus refused the myrrh and the wine. Here we see Jesus create the amazing gospel. We see Jesus refused the pain killer and bore all the pain of our sin and refused the myrrh which symbolizes death showing He would not stay dead. How amazing that even the weight of all our sin and even despite the devils best effort Jesus still payed the debt in full and rose again defeating the devil and death. So lets remember Jesus and that He shed His blood to pay the full price of sin for us. If you dont know Jesus let me tell you He did this for you, He died for you all you have to do is trust in Him and He will save you from hell and live in you forever, helping you, guiding you, comforting you and so much more for the rest of your life and after that, when you die you will go to live with Him. He died and then rose again to provide the way of salvation. God loves you.

4. P AIN R ELIEF
Right so Ive been sick for the past few days (thumbs down). Its like the u or something (which is brilliant on Christmas week by the way) and no its not man u, my u actually exists. As you can imagine u like symptoms include runny nose, chesty cough, tiredness, sickness and really all the usual series of unfortunate things the u brings. For me though it also brings soreness ranging from really bad back pain to headaches. So not only was I taking antibiotics and medicine for my cough but painkillers too. It was these painkillers that inspired this blog. A while ago I was trying to gure out what to talk about at church. I had to come up with a short message to speak on on Jesus death and how He died for us. I was amazed by what God showed me in Mark 15:22-24. It was something new and amazing that I had never saw before and I want to share it with you. This is that passage in Mark 15; 22 They brought Jesus to the place called Golgotha (which means the place of the skull). 23 Then they offered him wine mixed with myrrh, but he did not take it. 24 And they crucied him. Dividing up his clothes, they cast lots to see what each would get. As I read this one question hit me. I wonder why did Jesus refuse the wine mixed with myrrh?. Whats the reason behind this? I mean there must be some reason for Jesus to turn it down. So I decided to look further into this. So, I thought to myself, it goes like this they brought Jesus to Golgotha to be crucied (v22) after being whipped and beaten. Then they made Him carry His own cross until He couldnt carry it anymore and then they crucied Him proceeding to try to get Jesus to drink

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I started by looking at the word martyr to get to grips with what it actually means; I discovered it is from the Greek word meaning witness and it means one who bears testimony to the truth of what he has seen or heard or knows, as in a witness in a court of justice One who endures severe or constant suffering for their witness

5.T HE L ITTLE G IRL (W HY B OTHER T O D IE )


I was reading the book by DC Talk called Jesus Freaks the other day for the second time. Its content is made up of real life stories of Christians who have been persecuted to the point of death because they wouldnt deny Christ. Ill always remember this one story of a little girl in church. The army broke into an underground church where a service was being held. They ripped a Bible off one of the congregation and threw it on the oor. Come and spit on your Bible and deny Christ they said to the church. One by one many Christians went up reluctantly and did so and they were freed. As they ran out crying and pleading God for forgiveness this little girl ran up to the front, picked up the Bible and wiped it down and said Lord what have they done to your word. She refused to deny God and she was killed for her faith. The question is What would make you die for Jesus? Who is Jesus that Christians are willing to give their lives for His cause? and if your not a Christian Why should you give your life to Christ? but also as I thought over these questions I asked, are we Christians even willing to give our lives for Christ? Are we in that place where if it we were told choose to deny Christ and live or proclaim Him and die, thatd we choose to proclaim Him. We all know in our heads why we should be prepared to die for Christ, we know the accepted answer, the textbook answer but as I prepared I felt that as Christians some of us hadnt really grasped the enormity of how special Jesus is and how amazing what He accomplished was and why this warrants our all. I began to look into this deeper and to refresh my understanding of why, If today we were required to die for believing in Christ, what would make us be willing to and why should we be prepared to do so? Whats so special about Jesus?

Or in a Christian context One who chooses death rather than to deny Jesus Christ or His work So why should we be prepared to be martyrs for Christ? Luke 2 v 4-7 give us a starting point 4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her rstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them. So we start with the birth of Jesus the rst coming of Jesus. As we read this wonderful message of Jesus being born, and as we have remembered it especially at Christmas, we see the Saviour born in a manger as a human baby boy but yet fully God. Thats amazing and that in itself is enough to warrant the giving of our lives for God, the fact God sent His Son to earth for us, the King of heaven coming down to earth, born of a virgin for us but as I read it I discovered something that I hadnt really gave a lot of thought to. Its this.when Jesus was born, when He came down to earth from heaven, He split time..literally. His birth was so great it is now used to divide time into things that happened BC and AD. Time and life was so signicantly changed by the coming of God to earth that it was split into everything before Christ and everything after it. Now think about it. There has been important people, important dates and important times. Your son or daughters birth, your birthday or times of war or peace but no time, no one, no-matter how great has ever been used to dene time. No ones birth or life has ever been so signicant or made such an impact that it has actually been used as a yard stick to measure time before and after the event other than Jesus. We must realize that Jesus isnt just someone we can brush over. He isnt something we can know and then just live on as if nothing happened. If we see how special Jesus is, how important

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and special He is in John 14 v 6. John 14 v 6 says this 6 Jesus answered, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. In this verse Jesus boldly states He is the way, truth and life. What a statement and whats more amazing is the fact that this isnt just a statement Jesus fullls this claim He is the only way to heaven, He is the truth, and He is life. Its as radical now as it was in the time of Jesus, lets take a look at when Jesus says Hes the way. Jesus says I am the way, the truth and the life. He does not say I am a form of the way, truth and life, He does not say I am one of the ways, the truths and the lives, He says I AM the way, truth and life. It is singular,He is the ONLY way, ONLY truth and ONLY life and no one can come to the Father except through Him. Jesus says if you want to be saved and have your sins forgiven I AM THE ONLY WAY, that is THE ONLY TRUTH, and that is THE ONLY WAY to have THE ONLY LIFE. This cant be watered down or misinterpreted, Jesus is the only way. So why be prepared to die for Jesus? because He is the way, truth and life. Without Him there is no way to heaven, no basis for truth, literally no life, and no hope of heaven or salvation. Hes the creator of it all. Without Him nothing exists. Take love for example because God has said He is love, its one of His characters, God says He is love, and we know this is truth because God is truth, therefore there is no love without God because God is love. He is what love steams from. I was listening to a pastor the other day who was talking about how people who deny the existence of God have to deny to fact that truth, love and life itself, both physical and spiritual, dont exist because in denying God you deny that things like love, truth and life have a basis, a starting point. I mean we could never have came up with truth or love or life ourselves. We cant invent new feelings or life or whats right and wrong we just know whats right and wrong even as a little baby. So that means in order for us to have these, for us to experience these, which obviously we do because we all have physical life, know love and have truth, there must have been someone there in the beginning who had these, who possessed life and who made them and us and wanted us to know of them to..God. God gave them to us when he made us. God literally is all these as John 14 v 6 says, He isnt a mere representation of these He is these. God doesnt come from love or

truth or life. He isnt a product or creation made from love, truth or life. He created love, the way and truth and life. He isnt part of these, they are all parts of Him and when we grasp this we can understand and see why Christians die for Jesus, why as Christians we should be prepared to put our lives on the line for Christ and why if your not saved you should give your life to Christ because without Him, we have nothing, we are nothing and would never have existed. He is the very air we breath. He is the very eb and ow of life. As we live we are living and breathing God because life is a product of His mighty work of creation. Thats mind blowing, life altering, that even if you arent a Christian you are still evidence for Christ because you are breathing because of Christ because of His love and His gift of life. Everything you feel, every ounce of love and truth that you know in your life is as a direct result of the creator God who gifted you all this when He created you. Im not quite sure how at times we Christians live as if we dont know this. How can we forget such and awesome God. Instead of ignoring or forgetting lets constantly remind ourselves that God is our life, our breath and our everything. Maybe you still arent convinced about this, why should I be prepared to die for Christ? or why should I give my life to Christ?. Well heres the right hook, the big secret that everyone should know, the strongest reason for giving everything you have to Christ. Matthew 27:50 50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit. And then to Matthew 28:5-6 5 The angel said to the women, Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucied. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. The reason?.He died for you. He gave all He had to provide the only way for you to escape hell. He died and rose again to be the Saviour of your soul if you turn away from sin, trust in Jesus and give Him full control over all your life.

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I dont think we grasp this completely because if we did we would be bouncing, we would be telling the world weve became accustomed to it, used to it, but I urge you to really let it sink in, Jesus Christ died for you. Will I say it again Jesus, Gods Son died for us. How special is that, that the God of heaven came to earth as Jesus and divided time. Jesus the one who is literally everything we need died because His love for you was so great He gave His life for our Salvation. He paid the price. What greater love is there than this? What can we compare this to? There is nothing we can compare this amount of love to. Nothing we know of even comes close to God and His sacrice for us on the cross. Isaiah 40 v 18 puts it like this With whom, then, will you compare God? To what image will you liken him? Isaiah asks this rhetorical question to highlight how we cant compare God to anyone or anything else. Who can you compare God to when you know how awesome and mighty He is. In Jesus death we see this might, the strongest act of restraint ever, when He humbled Himself, let Himself be beaten for us, mocked, scoffed and murdered when He could have just walked off the cross without even bothering to call 10,000 angels. Then rose again defeating death to provide the way for us to live forever in heaven with Him. Im not sure what to say, I cant say anything that brings enough glory to this. All I can say is how can we not be prepared to give all we have even up to the point of dying for Him, when He is all we have and when He gave all He had for us. This breaks me, it brings me to my knees when I realize the importance of this all over again. I feel stupid for sometimes forgetting the importance of Jesus dying and rising again for us but yet I feel so loved and forgiven because of it. How can we not. The thing is some people arent saved, they dont believe in Christ or what He has done for them on the cross, some have never heard. I ask you if you dont believe in Jesus, if you havent gave Him full control of all you life, if you havent heard please consider Christ because He is so special, He is the only way, the only truth and the only life and He was the one who died and rose again to provide you with the way to life and forgiveness of sin if you trust in Him. Outside of Him there is no hope, no life but in Him is a sure hope and life forever in heaven, thats the good news. There is no need to live anymore without Him, no argument to justify living outside Christ because He has provided an escape from hell and not only that but life everlasting in heaven with Him when you die. He is our only hope. This is why people die for Christ. This is why you should ask God to save you and forgive your sins.

Christian, live out what we know to be true, live out Christ, give our all and tell everyone about our wonderful Saviour and how He saved us because as Romans 8:1-3 says 1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus,2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set youfree from the law of sin and death. How can we not react to this in full service. Lets not hide, cower away or refrain from proclaiming the gospel. Jesus is too special, Salvation too important and the transformation Jesus has made in our lives to amazing to not tell of. This is the reason why we should be prepared to give our all, even to die for Christ. Our motto and banner? Philippians 1 v 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.

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Youre rich in love, and Youre slow to anger Your name is great, and Your heart is kind For all Your goodness I will keep on singing Ten thousand reasons for my heart to nd We have a wonderful God. Praise Him. The song goes on to say; And on that day when my strength is failing The end draws near and my time has come Still my soul will sing Your praise unending Ten thousand years and then forevermore It says that even in times when we are failing we can still praise God, Hes there with us and then when the end end draws near, when death is near we can still sing because if we are Christians we will go to live forever in heaven with God for 10,000 years and evermore. If we dont praise God for that, for saving us then there is something wrong because its awesome, amazing, life changing. If you want this assurance of heaven, sins forgiven and knowing all these amazing blessing God gives then its simple all you have to do is ask. Ask God to forgive your sins, trust and give Him control of you life. Its easy to get saved, to become a Christian but it costs everything but I know Id rather give control of my life to one who knows what Hes doing, rather than ounder trying to control my life myself when I would be oundering and still not in control. God provided a way to heaven, take it, Jesus is worthy of our all.

6. T AKE A D EEP B REATH AND ...P RAISE


I love music, its brilliant and I was listening to a bit of music today and put on a song. Its 10,000 Reasons by Matt Redman. As it played I thought of Psalm 150:6 which says Let everything that has breath praise the LORD.Praise the LORD. I was reminded at how many reasons we have to praise God and started to try and list some of them just to remind me how much I should be praising God for. Life, Breath, Sight, Taste, Touch, Words, Hearing, Love, Truth, Grace, Mercy, HIS DEATH, HIS RESURRECTION, Family, Friends, Money, Food, Clothes, Water, Freedom, Trees, Plants, Animals, The Seasons, The whole world, The Galaxies, The Universes, Our Brain, Our Lungs, Our Heart (all our bodies), The Sea, Sky, Gravity, Keeping everything in place e.g the earth in space, SALVATION, Strength, Faith, JESUS, CARING FOR US, Faithfulness, Safety, The fact that God is with us, That He knows all, That everything is in His hands and heaps and tonnes and loads more, We could go on forever and not even scratch the surface of all we could praise God for. I know in my life there are an innumerable amount of things to praise God for. He is amazing. The fact is, life isnt worth living without God. Life isnt life without God, its just existing without hope but with God hope is sure and heaven is certain. Without God we have no purpose with God in our lives, life has a purpose, we are part of His unbelievable plan to reach the world. Aww there are so many reasons to praise God. As the song says;

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7. W HY H ASN T I T S NOWED ? (C HRISTMAS B LOG )


Last year at around this time I can remember there being heaps of snow, like actual tonnes. So much in fact that I can remember people attempting and succeeding in building igloos, it was ridiculous. However as I write this Im looking out my window and I see zero snow, none, zilch, nada etc etc. Whats up with that, why in the period of a year has it changed from basically being Narnia to just normal Northern Ireland. Just as a kind of disclaimer Im really not complaining, dont get me wrong snow looks fantastic its just id honestly prefer to be able to go and see people without actually having to risk my life to do so but anyway back to my point. Ive no idea why it has changed so much in a year.I had posted on Facebook to look out for the Christmas blog and to be quite honest I was struggling to nd what to say, sounds a bit silly now that I read that I mean just tell the Christmas story thats amazing enough, but I was struggling. Then as I was being distracted by my questioning of why snow isnt here this year, that I shared at the start, it was brought to my remembrance that every year the Christmas story and message has stayed the same. The snow comes and goes, leaves fall and disappear and long, sunny days change to cold, bitter evenings but the message of Christmas, the birth and life of Jesus never changes. It is a constant in a constantly changing world. So I want to ask you a question. Why has Jesus not changed? Why has the fact that He saves all those who turn away from sin and ask Him to save them remained that, a fact?Heres the answer.ready?.Truth doesnt change. Truth doesnt adapt to what the majority wants. You see the fact that God sent Jesus to earth, to be born of the virgin Mary, then live a perfect sinless life as wholly man and wholly God, do miracles, heal sick, preach the gospel, save sinners, disciple Christians, love the poor, value children, correct the wrongs, be beaten up, spat on, whipped, bruised, mocked, laughed at, murdered, die to pay for sin, rise from the dead, defeat sin and death,

conquer the grave, and reign forever in heaven but send His Spirit to be with all His people (and much more) isnt a myth. Its real. No bits have been added, no message changed, the word of God has not changed. The Bible is true, Jesus is true. Jesus hasnt changed through the years because all He said,all He done and is doing and is, is truth. He is the Creator, Lord and Saviour. The challenge for us all this year is to actually remember that Christmas isnt a celebration of a story its a celebration of the fact that Jesus came as a baby to earth ultimately to die so that if we believe in Him and turn away from sin we can be saved and live in heaven with God when we die. The problem with that is if you havent accepted Christ as your Saviour, if you dont believe that His death paid could pay for your sin or if you just dont believe that He is God then celebration isnt really an option. You see the Bible puts it pretty bluntly that we are sinful;Romans 3v23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of GodSo because of this we are all from birth full of sin because of Adam and Eves disobedience in the Garden of Eden and therefore we were heading to hell without a hope;Romans 6v23 For the wages of sin is death But as we know God, in an unmatchable act of unconditional love, sent His only Son ,to come as a baby to a virgin called Mary, to after living 33 years, of sinlessness, on earth, died on the cross for our sin and rose again on the third day, defeating sin and the devil, to give us a hope and to provide the way that we could escape hell and instead go to live with God in heaven when we die. Ok lets pause here for a second. You see that word love up a couple of sentences. Thats the the reason God sent Jesus, just out of sheer, unmeasurable love for us, that we didnt deserve. I was reminded of how much we should valve this the today day and how we should talk more about this love because its..indescribable,and its amazing that God actually loves us with this love. Time is dened by this love. When God sent Jesus time was split into all that happened before and all that happened after and He came, the Saviour came, as a baby so He could provide a way for us to go to heaven if we believe in Him. He did it all just because He values and loves you so much. The full verse in Romans 6v23 says this; 23 For the wages of sin is death,butthe gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank God for the but because that but reminds me that hell doesnt have to be the nal destination and that heaven can be if we ask Jesus to save us. Romans 10v9 says; If you declare with your mouth, Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised

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raised him from the dead, you will be saved. This is the real truth of Christmas, this is how to have joy, to believe that Jesus came as a baby to die on the cross to provide the way of Salvation, the way to get to heaven and its for you. Think about this seriously this Christmas and let it affect your life. If God has saved you be excited, joyful and extremely thankful in the fact that He gave His all for you because He loves you. If you havent accepted Christ then please honestly consider it this Christmas because it is so important, it is literally between life and death. Dont put it off anymore. I promise if you honestly accept Jesus and ask Him to save you and help you turn away from sin, He will and then you can live with Him forever in heaven and your life can too be a celebration of the fact that Jesus saves. Have a really great Christmas Chrissy Cameron

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Matt 11:28
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

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