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The real enemy April 29, 2019

Filed under: Everything — Jason Olson @ 7:24 am
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Let’s face it, we face adversity throughout life. However often we get the real enemy confused. All too easily we can see another person, agency, business, politician as the enemy. We feel offended, assaulted, or even wronged. But let’s not forget the real enemy. Paul reminds us in his letters to the Ephesians that we “struggle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (6:12). Remember Jesus’ own words that the “thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10). This even occurs within the church! C. S. Lewis in his book, Screwtape Letters, speaks to how its one of the evil one’s schemes to keep us wrapped up in strife between church denominations, leaders, pastors, etc., because as long as our hearts are engaged in destructions, our eyes aren’t on God.

So the next time you feel like someone (person, political party, etc) is your enemy, remember who the real enemy is. That we are to put on the Full Armor of God (Eph 6) so that we can stand firm against the attacks of the evil one. Jesus came so that we could not only have a restored relationship with the Father, but also to redeem our relationships with one another.

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Fearing the Lord May 29, 2009

Filed under: Everything — Jason Olson @ 6:06 am
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psalmPsalm 103: 17-18

But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD’s love is with those who fear him,and his righteousness with their children’s children- with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.

Soundbiting can be very deceptive. We see it during every politically charged event, with people having their words taken out of context and then we make assumptions on what they are trying to say from a snippit. I had that feeling with this verse, and thought about how people talk about the “feat of the Lord”. So Lord loves that we fear him? Is he someone we should be afraid of? I think the key word in these two verses is children… the balance is somewhat similar to the fear that children need to have of their earthly parents.

I love my son, and don’t want him to be afraid of me, however in order to live  a life within boundaries, there needs to be the understanding that I can correct and force the right way. A respect for power and authority. Children need to make right choices, but know that they’ll be corrected if they don’t.

Think of it another way, what keeps you driving on the right side of the road? The law, a common shared idea of what is right-and-wrong, fear of a ticket or an accident? But you don’t drive around being afraid of driving. You understand that their are consequences, that there is a higher authority, and if we respect that authroity, and do the right actions, there is nothing to worry about.

Let’s go back a bit further in this verse:

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My life… May 27, 2009

Filed under: Everything — Jason Olson @ 5:36 am
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Acts 20:24

But I do not count my life of any value or dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.

I was listening to public radio yesterday and they said that one of the biggest problems that teenagers face is the sense of purpose – why I’m here, what makes me unique. What’s my purpose? Without a sense of a calling, there is little to strive for. But we know in God’s word that we have a race to run, and pursue with joy. That calling, that purpose, may not be easy, but it is worth living for.

We all need to know that there is a greater calling on our life than to simply exist. And fortunately the Lord has designed each one of us to testify the grace of God in various ways – through direct missionary work, or via our natural spheres of influence. There may be more work for us to do as well, to bring glory to His name. And we must search our these purposes for our lives, and press on towards bringing them into completion. Our responsibility is be faithful to the calling he has placed before us: nothing more or less.