Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Party Time!

2012 - The End?
We gonna party like, party like it's the end of the world.
We gonna party like, like it's 2012.
You know that it doesn't matter as long as we got each other.
Turn it up, turn it up, mash it up, it ain't the end of the world.
- Jay Sean, 2010

I don't really listen to popular radio stations, and so I'd never heard this song before I found it on the popular Grooveshark list. I've listened to it a couple of times, and never had really paid attention to the lyrics - I think I was typing a paper for my psych class at the time, until I switched to classical (yes I'm lame but it helps me think!) - but when I finally listened to them, it gave me an idea for a blog post. Ta da!
In this song, Jay Sean sings of partying like it's the end of the world. According to popular belief, the world is supposed to end in 2012 - December 21st, according to some reports from this website: - and so Jay sings of partying then and forgetting that it's all going to end soon.
Are the Mayans right? Is the world really going to end in 2012, and leave us all...where, exactly? What's going to happen to us? Will we die? Or just kinda float around and chill, waiting for something to happen? No one knows.
Except one person, of course.
“But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left. Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect." - Matthew 24:36-44
Now, after that ridiculously long passage - sorry about all the reading, but it's worth it! - we learn that no one will know the hour of Christ's return or know the "end of the world" as the Mayans seemed to know. Jesus gives us examples in this passage that let us better understand what He means. He gives the example of Noah, where Noah and his family knew the great flood was coming, and tried to warn the people of it. Those people didn't believe him, and went on living their sinful lives. Then, suddenly and without warning, the flood that they insisted wasn't happening...happened. They all drowned because they didn't listen to Noah and heed his warnings about the flood. Jesus also tells us that His coming will be swift, and people will disappear suddenly and without warning. When there may be two men working outside, one could be gone in an instant. This also goes with two women working - one could disappear suddenly, the other staying there.
Jesus goes on to tell us to stay awake and be ready at any time for the end of the world. He gives the second example of a man who would stay awake if he knew that a thief would try to enter his house that night. He tells us that we should be like this man, ever ready for His return.
So what does all this mean? It means, basically, that the Mayans couldn't know that the world is going to end in 2012 - because only God knows when Jesus will return and what will happen. Does this mean that Jay Sean's song is wrote? Partly. Obviously the 2012 part could be wrong - who knows, it could happen! I'm not one to say it will or won't! - but the rest is right, in a sense. We should be making the most of every day and living like it's our last day! Of course, we should be living these days out in a godly way that He would approve of, but nonetheless, we should be partying like it's our last day!
So here's your NR challenge for this post. I challenge you to forgo the hype and belief that the world is going to end in 2 years. Read the Bible, and listen to what it says - only God knows the hour of His return, and so we constantly need to be on our guard, as well as living a life that would be pleasing to Him!
Are you in?


It's war.

It's go time.
All over the news you can hear reporters saying how various countries are constantly at war with each other. Every time one seems to come to a conclusion, the other changes its mind or goes to war with another country. Even the United States is still involved in the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan - almost a decade after the 9/11 attacks. Almost every country has been involved in a war or struggle of some sort, whether political, religious, ect. - people can find a reason almost anywhere to fight.
Before I continue with this post, I want to make it clear that I'm not arguing or blaming anyone for being at war. I support our troops 100% and thank God that they are sacrificing every day to protect us. I much admire them and am proud that they stand up for our freedom.
But, anyways. Everywhere you turn there is someone starting a conflict. All around are people arguing and trying to overcome each other for...what? In the end, after the issue is resolved, someone is going to be unhappy and eventually it'll start over!
We spend so much time debating wars and conflicts worldwide. While some of this is ohk, I think that, sometimes, we spend too much time arguing about arguing! Instead of debating over things like that and spending time on that which could be used elsewhere, there's something else that should really capture our attention. It's the biggest war that has ever happened in the history of, well, ever. While it should be something that all of us think of and try to impact, in reality we tend to put it farther down than it should be in our list of priorities.
For those that know what war I'm talking about, do you agree? And those that don't, let me enlighten you:
It's the war over us.
Since the beginning, God and Satan have been in a fierce battle over something extremely important - us. As humans, it doesn't really seem like something that we realize - after all, it isn't a war that's covered by the media so we can see the Tweets, updates, or photos that relate to it. It isn't a war that "affects" us everyday - God and Satan don't "show up" every day visibly, trying to tug at our arms and pull us onto their "side."
Or is it?
See, there's this pretty awesome - especially awesome, since it came from the most awesome being that ever was - media source that covers this never-ending war. It's called the Bible, and while it may seem old, it actually is way before it's time - as in, it chronicles what is supposed to happen at the end of the world as we know it, and tells of Christ's second coming.
In this world of constantly being updated about the progress of any given war, conflict, or battle, this is war that sometimes can leave people in the dark. Who is winning? Who is losing? What's the deal and where is it taking place?
As for answers, I'm not saying that I know either. Nobody really knows except those involved - God and Satan. However, Satan's a little off. As the days go on, he becomes more and more convinced of his victory. Think of all that is in the world - all the pornographic images, the fighting, and hate and lies and all of that nonsense. That's Satan gaining ground. Sure, he unfortunately has a lot on his side. But what he doesn't know is this. At the end of time, when Jesus comes back after taking all of the Christians on earth (see the book of Revelation to get the whole story; it's a great promise!) Satan's in a big heaping amount of trouble. God is going to defeat him, and Satan will be thrown into a lake of fire for all of eternity - making him the loser. Revelation 20:10 tells it clearly:
"And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever."
You may be thinking that there isn't any way that we can help - and guess what! You're wrong. It's recruiting time boys. You can help with this. How you ask? Simple.
Lead someone to Christ.
An act that may take 5, 10, 15 minutes could mean an eternity for that person to spend in Heaven with Christ, instead of an eternity away from Him, which is simply the worst punishment that ever was or ever will be. We're called to do this anyway, from Jesus Himself, in Matthew.
"Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit." - Matthew 28:19.
So, here's your NR challenge for this post. Get involved in this war that's invading in our personal lives day and night, no matter where or who you are. Take a stand for Christ and lead someone over to the winning side. And don't give up hope - while it may seem like things are going rough, and that your efforts aren't food enough, think again. Satan's probably cringing right now as you read this, hopefully mentally toughening up and realizing your call in this fight. Remember in Ephesians 6 it tells us to put on the full armor of God - the belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, shield of faith, helmet of salvation, and sword of the Spirit. Put these on, and we become unstoppable.Together, we can make a difference. Strap on your helmets, ladies and gentlemen. As one of my favorite quotes says, God promises a safe landing, not a calm passage.
Are you in?


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

How Great is Our God!

Hey everyone,
just a quick post today because I'm studying for my midterm for my ECED class tonight. I just wanted to tell you all once again how great our God is.
I can't go into details just yet, but those closest to me know what's going on in this hectic life of mine. All I can say is that boy, does God answer prayer or what! While "no" is always an answer, "yes" is still one of the greatest answers ever!
I can't challenge you to do this - that would be wrong! - but I ask you instead to pray for me and what's going to be happening in my life in the next few months. Big changes are possible, and I'm leaving it to God to get me through it.
Are you in?


Wednesday, October 6, 2010


This won't be a long post, just something short that I thought of as I sit in the library waiting for my friend to take this computer.
Well, it's raining. Again. For like the 7381963786478th day in a row. Don't you love it? I loved rain when I was in high school, because looking out the window and seeing it made me happy. It gave the day a certain feel, and even the teachers seemed to feel it too - rainy days normally turned into movie days pretty quickly. But now that I'm in college, rain isn't so high on my favorite list since now, when it rains, I have to walk through it. Honestly, I can't wait for snow only because it's not as wet and miserable - and that's a lot coming from me, since I can't stand winter! But as I write this from the second floor of the library, next to the windows looking out on the grove, I see how pretty it kind of is.
I'm reminded of God's promise to Noah after the flood, in Genesis 9. He gave the rainbow as a sign of His love and His promise that He would never flood the earth again. (Genesis 9:12-17.) So everytime a rainbow appears in the sky, we're reminded to this day that he will never flood the earth again.
But what about days like today, where it seems like there isn't anything special - it's just raining, and raining, and raining, thanks to the aftermath of the hurricane? It doesn't mean that there isn't a promise! Just beacuse there isn't a rainbow out in the sky doesn't mean that we should forget everything that God has promised us.
So here's your NR challenge for this very short and sporadic post. (Sorry about that.) Remember God's promise today, wherever you are - whether it's raining and pouring there, or the sun is shining and everything is beautiful. God is amazing - let's always remember that!
Are you in?


Monday, October 4, 2010

Grow up! (Not.)

For once, I don't have anything pressing for my time tonight. I finished most of my work yesterday since we were home all day. This feeling is incredible - for the first time since the start of classes, I don't have psychology to read, take notes on, or journal about in the weekly journal we have to keep. I don't have theater to read, even though I have a script to read which shouldn't take long. I don't have anything for my ECED class or my EDEX, which is great. This feeling is amazing!
The feeling may be in part to how my day has been. While it's been raining (and raining...and raining...and raining...) it's still been a good day. You see, this is why: this past weekend I got together with 2 of my old friends who I haven't seen in a while, thanks to college. It was great to hang out with them and just relax, not worrying about grades or studying or any of the other stresses that have been so dominant lately. We went to a church rummage sale, and while walking around, my friend and I found this hat:

Why, yes, I love it too. This hat automatically made me laugh and think of how when I was younger, my brother and I got Pokemon posters for Christmas one year. They were the ridiculous ones, with all of the Pokemon on them, complete with stickers you could color and put on each space on the poster. It was the best gift I'd ever been given. He and I sat there in the living room for like 3 hours that day and just colored all of the stickers and put them on the poster. It was sweet.
I was one of the world's happiest kids then because of that poster. And this weekend, when I found that hat and bought it, it was like I was returning to my childhood and I was the happy pathetic nerdy kid all over again. I wore it all day today, and let me tell you - it kept the rain and the cold wind out for my poor head, that's for sure. Yeah, I got some stares and some smiles, but I just kept this ridiculous grin on my face and kept walking.
You know, as kids, we got excited about a whole bunch of stuff. Christmas. Pokemon. The toy in the cereal box. Going places in the car. Winning races and getting prizes. Simple stuff that today, as adults, we don't really even think about, much less get excited for. Here's an example: As a child, I LOVED going places (excluding the doctor, dentist, and orthodontist, of course.) The car was fun to ride in, and I remember always grabbing my CD player (since this was before the days of the iPod, imagine!) with my Britney Spears CD in it and my huge headphones and rushing to the car. I got so excited to go anywhere - every trip was an adventure. Now consider today. While I still like going places and getting out of the house, I hate driving. Hate, hate, hate it. I always was the one on the games in the arcade where you drove cars, and yet today, I hate driving. Period. I just don't get excited for it at all. Funny how that works, huh?
Why can't we keep the excitement that we have as children and make it last throughout our lives? This is something that could be so useful - think about getting excited for work or school, instead of dreading it and having our attitudes make it worse than it really is? And what about our faith? In Matthew 18:3 Jesus said:
"I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven."
Jesus also said, in Matthew 19:14,
"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."
Jesus is saying that unless we have the faith and excitement of a child when it comes to a relationship with Him, we won't be giving it our all and being sincere. Kids are so excited about everything, like I've said - so we should use that excitement and dive into our relationship with God!
Say you just gave a little kid a present. Girl or boy, it makes no difference, let's just say that you gave them one of the coolest presents they've ever had in their life. How do they respond? After screaming and shouting because they're so excited over it, they thank you a million times and more often than not rush over to give you a hug. Now think about it: God gave us the greatest present of all - everything we have. Our lives. The world around us. The company of other people. And, most importantly, the gift of eternal life through the death of His son. How are we thanking Him? By ignoring it and taking it for granted? Not even accepting it? A kid wouldn't do that. Why are we, as God's kids, doing that?
Here's your NR challenge for this post. I challenge you to have the faith and excitement of a child when it comes to everything in your life the next few days. Smile more and be happy. Take nothing for granted. Thank those in your life that deserve it - parents, friends, family members, anyone. And more importantly, get on your knees and thank the one that gave it all just for you and me. He's waiting to return the huge hug that we should be giving Him. So what do you say?
William Strafford once said, "Kids: they dance before they learn there is anything that isn't music." Let's do just that. Dance without music, knowing that you're a child of the amazing creator who loves you and would give anything for you. It'll brighten your day, and maybe someone else's as well.
Are you in?