Tag Archives: Christians on Campus

I’m lame

School starts next week, so Christians on Campus has been really active.  We’ve had open houses, moved students into their dorms, breakfasts, lunches, and everything in between.  This morning we had Sunday fellowship at our campus house and the topic was Mephibosheth.  Now, lets be real for a second.  How many of you can honestly say that you know who Mephibosheth was?  I couldn’t.  But after our fellowship this morning, I’ll never forget his story.

Let me give you the verses from 2 Samuel and then I’ll re-speak (or type) what the brothers shared this morning.

2 Sam 4:4 “Now Jonathan, Saul’s son, had a son who had crippled feet.  He was five years old when the news came of Saul and Jonathan out or Jezreel.  And his nurse took him up and fled.  And as she hurried to flee, he fell and was made lame.  And his name was Mephibosheth.”

9:1 “And David said, Is there still anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show kindness to him for Jonathan’s sake?

3b-9 “And Ziba said to the king, There is still a son of Jonathan; he is crippled in his feet.  Then the king said to him, Where is he?  And Ziba said to the king, He is just now in the house of Machir the sone of Amiel in Lo-debar.  And King David sent men and took him from the house of Machir the son of Amiel, from Lo-debar.  And Mephibosheth the son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David and fell on his face and paid homage.  And David said, Mephibosheth.  And he said, Your servant is here.  And David said to him, Do not be afraid, for I will surely show kindness to your for the sake of Jonathan your father; and I will restore to you all the land of your father Saul, and you will eat food at my table continually.  And he paid him homage and said, What is your servant that you should look upon a dead dog like me?  And the king called Ziba, Saul’s attendant, and said to him, All that belongs to Saul and to all his house I give to your master’s son.”

10b-11 “…and Mephibosheth, said to David, shall eat at my table like one of the king’s sons.”

13 “And Mehibosheth dwelt in Jerusalme because he ate at the king’s table continually.  And he was crippled in both his feet.”

Ok, so Mephibosheth was Jonathan’s son, which means he was Saul’s grandson.  Just in case you don’t know the story, Saul was the first king of Israel, but after a while he turned away from Jehovah and eventually lost His blessing.  Jehovah then chose David, who was one of Saul’s attendants who played the lyre.  Even though both Saul and Jonathan realized that David would be king someday, Saul tried to kill David but Jonathan made a covenant with David that he would always show kindness to his house (there’s a lot more but this is the abridged version).  So after Jonathan and Saul were both killed in battle, David became king.  This is why Mephibosheth’s nurse ran – she was afraid David would kill everyone in Saul’s house.

But he didn’t.

He invited Jonathan’s only descendent – the grandson of the man who tried to kill him – to eat at his table continually.

The brother who shared this morning pointed out that this story of Mephibosheth actually represents our Christian experience today.

Romans 5:10 says “For if we, being enemies, were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more we will be saved in His life, having been reconciled.”  Just like Mephibosheth was an enemy of David, so we were enemies of God.  But we were brought back to God through another – through Christ, or in the case of Mephibosheth, through Jonathan.

And like Mephibosheth, we are also lame towards God.  According to Romans 3:10-11 “There is none righteous, not even one; There is none who understands, there is none who seeks God.”  But luckily, Romans 2:4 says “…knowing that God’s kindness is leading you to repentance.”  If you look back in the verses, King David sent men and took Mephibosheth.  He didn’t seek out David, just like we, in our lame condition, can’t seek out God.  God sought us and His kindness leads us to repentance.

So what happens after God finds us and leads us to repentance?  We eat!  For free!  All the time!  Once Mephibosheth got to David’s house, all he did was eat at the king’s table.  Continually.

But the point that really got me was that when Mephibosheth sat down at the table, he didn’t see his crippled feet!  When he sat down at the table all he could see was the food on the table. He forgot about his lame condition and just enjoyed!  I don’t know about you, but it seems like I’m always bombarded with thoughts from Satan about what a miserable sinner and terrible person I am.  He likes to bring up all of my sins and shortcomings and it’s so easy to get depressed and try to hide from God in Lo-Debar, which by the way means “no pasture,” “not having,” or “not having.”  But that’s the perfect opportunity to quote Ephesians 2:11-14 and claim my status as a child of God through the blood of Christ.  We don’t have to look at our crippled feet!  We can just come to the table through our Savior and eat!  Why stay in the place of no supply as an enemy of God when you can feast at the king’s table!  Don’t stay in Lo-Debar!  Come to the feast and forget about your weaknesses!

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“Your words were found…”

The famous Greek word logos — “word, speech, a...

I’ve recently been enjoying verse 16 from Jeremiah chapter 15.

“Your words were found and I ate them,

And Your word became to me

The gladness and joy of my heart,

For I am called by Your name,

O Jehovah, God of hosts.”

What a wonderful verse.  Did you know that such a verse existed was in the Bible??  A verse that tells us to eat God’s word??  But it does!  When some of my friends in Christians on Campus first pointed out this verse, and verses like it, my concept

of the Bible completely changed.  Suddenly, it went from being boring and hard to understand, to still sometimes boring and still hard to understand, but eatable as well.  But not even just eatable, but joy-infusingly eatable.  How in the world is this possible?  Let me share with you a footnote on this verse from the translation I’m using:

“According to the entire revelation in the Holy Bible, God’s words are good for us to eat, and we need to eat them.  God’s word is the divine supply as food to nourish us.  Through the word as our food, God dispenses His riches into our inner being to nourish us that we may be constituted with His element.  This is a crucial aspect of God’s economy.  When we eat Gods words, His word becomes our heart’s gladness and joy.”  For example, Psalm 119:103 says:

“How sweet are Your words to my taste!

Sweeter than honey to my mouth!”

Matthew 4:4 is a well-known verse among Christians on this topic.

“But He answered and said, It is written, ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out through the mouth of God.'”

Now, in Greek, there are two different ways to say ‘word’.  Logos refers to the constant word, like the Bible.  While rhema refers to the instant word, like when the Lord speaks something specific to us in our prayer.  In this particular verse, the word is rhema.  This means that as a Christian, we need to pay attention to God’s personal and instant speaking to us.  Otherwise, we won’t make it.  We can’t live the Christian life without some real contact with God.

1 Peter 2:2 is a good example of a verse using logos.

“As newborn babes, long for the guileless milk of the word in order that by it you may grow unto salvation.”

Here, we see that the constant word, or the Bible, is likened to food.  This means we can eat it!  However, as we grow in Christ, we should move on from milk to solid food as in 1 Corinthians 3:2.

Now that we know we can take in the Lord’s instant and constant words as spiritual nourishment, but how exactly do we go about doing it?  Well, Ephesians 6:17-18 are helpful:

“And receive the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which Spirit is the word of God, by all means of prayer and petition, praying at every time in spirit and watching unto this in all perseverance and petition concerning all the saints.”

Aha!  So, in order to receive the word of God into us, we need to pray over it.  Martin Luther once said “It is very certain, that we cannot attain to the understanding of Scripture either by study or by the intellect. Your first duty is to begin by prayer.”

There is a wonderful little book on this topic that is almost entirely composed of quotes, including the one above, from Christians throughout the ages and across denominations who have discovered the benefits of praying over the words of the Bible.  It’s called “Lord Thou saidst…” compiled by Ray Graver and I highly recommend it.

Anyway, I hope you find the joy that is hidden in the word of God and let it become “sweeter than honey” to your mouth!

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Being independent of the Body is being independent of God; we all are members!

This is a wonderful post from A God-Man in Christ on seeing the Body of Christ and living in the Body of Christ.  This is super timely for me because at present, I am stuck in Nashville without the practical fellowship I am usually surrounded by at home with Christians on Campus.

You can view the full post here, but here’s a little intro:

If we see the Body of Christ we will realize that we need deliverance not only from our sinful and natural life, but also from our individualistic life. For us to know the Body life, we need to deny our self, because our self is the greatest problem and the greatest enemy of the Body.

Check with your experience – whenever you are in the self, you don’t want to be with the saints, and there’s no building up!

Just as the Father is versus the world (1 John 2:15), the Spirit is versus the flesh (Gal. 5:17), the Lord Jesus is versus the devil (1 John 3:8), so also the Body of Christ is versus the individual, versus the self. Lord, grant us a vision of the self and a vision of the Body!

Related Post:  Coals Burning Coals

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A better use of my mirror

I used to share my apartment with a roommate.  Out of courtesy I tried to keep things as clean as possible for her and do my chores.  This included cleaning the bathroom and washing the nice, big mirror every other week.  But when she moved out, I had the mirror, and the bathroom, all to myself (what girl wouldn’t love this situation?!).  But a funny thing happened.  Instead of cleaning the mirror, I started writing on it.

We all stand in front of the mirror for some length of time in the morning and evening when we are getting ready to begin and end our days, but about a year ago I decided to redeem that time for my Christian walk.  That’s where writing on my mirror comes in.  I had heard a friend talking about how she used to write on her mirror with dry erase marker to cram for tests while she got ready in the morning, and I thought “Why don’t that with prayers?”

Ever since then it’s been a habit of mine to pull out a dry erase marker whenever I’m touched by a certain verse in the Bible, a prayer I hear in a meeting or read in a Christian book, a hymn I want to sing, or a particular burden God put on my heart for someone else.

Here are a few examples (please excuse the towels and awkward angles, I didn’t wanna get in the pics):

These are some verses from Philippians 3:12-14 and 2 Timothy 1:9.

They say “Not that I have already obtained or am already perfected, but I pursue, if even I may lay hold of that for which I also have been laid hold of by Christ Jesus.  Brothers, I do not account of myself to have laid hold; but one thing I do: Forgetting the things which are behind and stretching forward to the things which are before, I pursue toward the goal for the prize to which God in Christ Jesus has called me upward.”

“Who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works but according to His own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before the times of the ages.”

This one is just a bunch of prayers I either heard or read that I wanted to apply to myself and my situation.

“Lord I want to live and walk in You.  Lord, I pray that You will be the good land to me in my experience, and that every aspect of my living may be in You.” – Life-Study of Joshua

“Make the sky in my being like awesome crystal.” – Ezekiel 1:22

“Lord, make me desperate to live You.” – Colossians 3:4

“Lord, keep me in the divine stream for the rest of my life!” – I don’t remember where I got this one, but I still like it.

This is a hymn I’ve sung many times with Christians on Campus.

It’s wonderful to start off the day singing “Draw me dear Lord, draw me today.  From everything else dear Lord, draw me away.”

It seems simple, but writing things like this on my mirror have really made a difference in my Christian life.  So instead and fretting over my how my hair looks or thinking over my failures for the day while brushing my teeth, the beginning and end of my days are spent singing and praying.  It’s a precious habit that I hope I will never give up.

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Coals burning coals

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’m not feeling all that great.  I’ve got insomnia and headaches and blah blah blah, so the thought of not going to a church meeting is really appealing.  Last night Christians on Campus and some christians around the area had a prayer meeting.  I somehow managed to drag my nasty, stinking, dead self to the meeting, and let me tell you – I got revived.  I wasn’t jumping up and down and shouting hallelujah all over the place, but I was warmed up.  It was so good to just be around other people who were enjoying God.

I heard an illustration once that the Christian life is like a bunch of coals.  If you have a pile of coals, they’ll burn each other for hours.  But if you separate one of the coals from the pile, it will cool off pretty quickly.  That’s what happens to me when I separate myself from other Christians.

That experience last night reminded me how precious Christian meetings are.  I know a lot of Christians (some of my family members included) think it’s enough to just have a personal relationship with the Lord without attending Christian gatherings.  A personal relationship with our dear Lord and Savior is extremely important, but that’s not all there is to the Christian life.

John 20:24 says “But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came.”

Seems like an odd verse right?  Well, the Bible I’m using has a fantastic footnote for this verse:

“After His resurrection the Lord came to meet with His disciples, beginning from the evening of this first day.  Thus, in the Lord’s resurrection the matter of meeting with the saints is crucial.  Mary the Magdalene met the Lord personally in the morning and obtained the blessing (vv. 16-18), but she still needed to be in the meetings with the saints in the evening to meet the Lord in a corporate way to obtain more and greater blessings (vv. 19-23).  Thomas missed the first meeting that the Lord held with the disciples after His resurrection, and he missed all the blessings as well.  However, he compensated for it by attending the second meeting (vv. 25-28).”

Can you believe that?  Mary had seen the Lord in His resurrection – something no one else was privileged to see.  She went to the tomb early and hung around until she saw Him.  She had one of the most wonderful, personal, and intimate experiences a believer could ever have with the Lord.  She met him face to face after He resurrected from the dead and before He ascended to the Father.  You’d think that would be enough to sustain her in her Christian pursuit for a while, right?  But according to the Lord, it wasn’t.  He told her to go to the brothers and meet with them.

In Hebrews 12:2 the writer (probably Paul) said he would “declare Your name to My brothers; in the midst of the church I will sing hymns of praise to You.”  In 10:25 he goes on by saying “Not abandoning our own assembling together, as the custom with some is, but exhorting one another; and so much the more as you see the day drawing near.”

Wow, this was Paul.  In 2 Corinthians 12:2-4 Paul tells us that he was “caught away to the third heaven” and into “Paradise” where he “heard unspeakable words.”  This man, this same man, told us to not abandon our own assembling together.  Even though he saw things that no one living human being had ever seen and heard things that no other living human being had heard, he still made a point to attend Christian gatherings with pitiful and lowly little believers like me.

The same Paul wrote Ephesians 4:16 “Out from whom all the Body, being joined together and being knit together through every joint of the rich supply and through the operation in the measure of each one part, causes the growth of the Body unto the building up of itself in love.”

Paul not only met with the other believers, he realized that he needed the other believers.  He didn’t go to meetings to fulfill some religious obligation, but he went to get joined and knit with the other members of the Body of Christ for the growth of the Body of Christ.  He even says in 1 Corinthians 12:14-22 that every member of the Body has a different function, and that even the members who appear to be weaker are necessary.  Hallelujah!  Even I’m a necessary part of the Body of Christ!

This is so good!  Don’t miss the meetings!  You receive blessings in the meetings!  You get built up with and encouraged by other Christians in the meetings!

There’s a lot more I could write on this topic (and I feel like this is all kind of scattered thanks to my lack of sleep), but I think I’ll end it here.  Maybe i’ll continue it later.

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The Discipline of the Holy Spirit – Christians on Campus college meeting

This week in the meeting for college students, we talked about the discipline of the Holy Spirit.  Most of the fellowship was based on part of a chapter in the book Knowing Life and the Church by Witness Lee.

When I first read the title of our reading for the night, I was kind of scared.  Wow, discipline.  Really?  I came here tonight to get disciplined?  I should of stayed home.

But we actually had some really sweet fellowship.

Our reading starts off by saying “God’s arrangement, ordination, permission, and move in our environment are the discipline of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit rules over our environment, and He moves and arranges everything to break our person.”

Ouch.  “Break our person.”  That sounds awesome.  Sign me up…not.

Further down the page, however, Romans 8:28 is referenced.  “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”  Usually, when I hear this verse, I think “Great.  All things are going to work out for good.  That means I’ll get an A on my test, none of my kids will go crazy today, all will be well.”  But actually, that’s not the context of this verse.  Romans 8 is all about freedom in the Spirit and the Christ who lives in us.  Verse 17 says “And if children, heirs also; on the one hand, heirs of God; on the other, joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him that we may also be glorified with Him.”  The verse following 8:28 says “Because those whom He foreknew, He also predestinated to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the Firstborn among many brothers.”  So, according to these two verses, the good that is to be worked out in verse 28 is just the gaining of more God so that we can be full-grown sons of God, and even heirs of God.

In 2 Corinthians 12, Paul tells us that he petitioned the Lord three times to remove “a thorn in the flesh” (v. 7).  This was not an actual thorn, but rather something in his environment or even a physical suffering arranged by God.  I don’t know about you, but whenever there’s something in my environment that causes me to suffer, you better believe I’m praying to have it taken away.  And you would think that Paul, someone who wrote 13 books of the New Testament, would surely be able to break through in prayer and miraculously turn a bad situation into a pleasant one.

But what was God’s reply to Paul’s thorn-removal request?  “My grace is sufficient for you” (v. 9).  Can you believe that?  God wouldn’t even take away Paul’s thorn.  PAUL’S.  I mean, wouldn’t God want to take it away so that Paul would be able to do more?  Write more?  Travel more?  Preach more?  How could Paul do all those things if he was suffering?

This is why fellowshipping with others is so wonderful.  The reading pointed out that “Our thorn (whatever it may be – family, work, roommates) will continue to pierce us, trouble us, and bother us.  This is the environment that God has created to cause us to know the Lord’s grace and to experience the Lord’s power.”  I find that the times I pray the most and rely on God the most is when I’m going through a difficult situation.  Usually, when everything is smooth sailing I forget about God and live independently from His grace.  No breaking.  No conforming.  But as soon as something pops up that gives me a hard time, I’m forced to turn to Him once again.

“If we submit ourselves to the Lord and receive this, we will meet the Lord within, and we will be blessed by having life as the power that carries us through and enables us to endure what we could not endure.”  The Lord is so sweet.  Every single person on this earth goes through difficult situations, but one thing I saw last night was that the difference between an unbeliever and a believer.  A believer has the potential to gain God and experience God’s grace and power when he is going through a difficult situation.  We don’t have to do anything!  Hallelujah!  We can just sit back and enjoy God.  We don’t have to be like the unbelievers who struggle through hard times and have to rely on their own limited strength to carry them through.  We have the almighty God who is just waiting for us to open up and call on Him so that He can be everything to us and meet our every need.  This is a real enjoyment in the Christian life.

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If I were a spider…

If I were a spider, I’d be a Brown Recluse.  I like to hide away in dark places, and if anyone disturbs me I usually bite them.  But recently I’ve been making a point of seeing an old friend.  A few weeks ago her sister and I went shopping and met her at the mall.  I hadn’t seen Kendra in a long time, but it didn’t seem to matter.  She helped me pick out a dress and we watched Bethany not buy anything.

After the mall we went to a home meeting at a couple’s house that meets with Christians on Campus.  I don’t even remember what the topic was that we fellowshipped over, something about the love of God I think or maybe it was loving others or loving God or something related to love.  I don’t know.  All I remember was that I realized how much I missed spending time with Kendra.  We were never close, but we did have one class together at OU – American Government.  A typical class period would involve our professor telling us about her foot surgery, her speeding ticket, or complaining about someone in her department while Kendra and I played hangman or tic-tac-toe.

After that I facebooked her and asked her if she wanted to do something, fully expecting her to say no or not reply because she’s way cooler than me.  But to my surprise she actually wanted to meet up with me.  We went to the same mall again because I had a coupon for the Republic of Bananas (Banana Republic) that was only good for that day.  Lunch in the food court was really sweet and not awkward at all.  We just talked about what we’d been up to and I think I brought up some things I’d been enjoying from the Bible lately.

After that we decided to meet for lunch today at Johnny Carino’s, and I just have to say that I’m finding out that sometimes it’s kinda nice to not live in the shadows.  Lunch today was really fun.  All we did was talk and eat.  No big deal.  I think maybe this is my new desensitization strategy for being around people.  Crowds (more than 3 people) still make me want to bite someone, but one person isn’t so bad.

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