Doubters Welcome (excerpt by Ray Pritchard)

Posted on by Thomas Smith

The resurrection of Jesus is that kind of miracle. It is totally unexplainable by any human or natural means. That may be why we don’t talk about it very much. We’re not sure how it happened. The crucifixion we can understand; the resurrection is another matter. Here’s the proof: Lots of people wear silver crosses around their necks. You don’t see many people wearing little silver empty tombs.

So I ask the question again: Do you believe in miracles? Especially this, do you believe in the greatest miracle of all—the resurrection of Jesus Christ? In case you think you have to answer “yes” just because you happen to be in church, put your mind at ease. If you answer “No” or “I’m not sure,” you are in good company. There are lots of people today who aren’t sure whether they believe it or not. And there were lots of people on the first Easter Sunday who weren’t sure either. Folks like Peter, James, John, Matthew, Bartholomew, Simon the Zealot, and a man whose name has become synonymous with doubt—Thomas. Doubting Thomas.

John tells us that Thomas was not present on that Sunday evening when Jesus suddenly appeared in their midst. The Bible doesn’t say why, but I think I know. There are basically two different ways people respond to sorrow and tragedy. Some seek solace in the company of their friends. They want people around to help them talk it out. Others prefer to be alone with their thoughts. Such was Thomas.

If it is true that Thomas realized more than the others what was going to happen in Jerusalem, then it may also be true that he was more deeply hurt. He was not with the disciples because his heart had been crushed. Everything he had, he had given to Jesus, and Jesus is dead.

He still loves, still cares, still wants to believe, but his heart is broken. He is not a bad man nor is his doubt sinful. Deep inside he wants to believe. Don’t put him down too hard. We’ve all been in the same place.

If you wish to call Thomas a doubter, please do not make him out an unbeliever. Some have tried to place him in the company of the skeptics. He does not belong there. Thomas is definitely not a skeptic or a rationalist. His doubts come from devotion to Christ. There is no doubt like the doubt of a broken heart. It’s one thing to doubt the Virgin Birth in a classroom setting. It is something else again to lose someone you love and wonder if there is still a God in heaven.

He is not an unbelieving skeptic; rather, he is a wounded believer. Remember, Thomas didn’t doubt the miraculous in general. He had seen many of Jesus’ greatest miracles. But this one was too big to take someone else’s word for it. He had to see it to believe it. And who could blame him?

When he says, “Unless I touch his wounds, I will not believe,” there is much more than doubt. There is love, and sorrow, and pain, and a tiny grain of hope. Thomas stands for all time as the one man who most desperately wanted to believe if only he could be sure. Can you blame him? Would you have been any different?

Jesus didn’t put him down. He said, “Go ahead, all you who wonder if it is true. See for yourself. Stop doubting and believe.” Here is the wonderful truth. Doubters are welcome at the empty tomb.

John Ortberg on being Christian

Posted on by Thomas Smith

“People would rather debate doctrine or beliefs or tradition or interpretation than actually DO what Jesus said ( to do). It’s not rocket science. JUST DO IT.

Practice loving a difficult person or try forgiving someone. Give away some money. Tell someone thank you. Encourage a friend. Bless an enemy. Say I’m sorry. Worship God” John Ortberg

Theology applied is better than Theology intellectualized. The world does not need more Theologians, it needs more Christians…. little Christs. Look around and see the world around you for what it really is. Starving for love, desperate to have value and identity, thirsting for something to satisfy and sadly, listening to the world and the latest expert on living who has no idea why we live or for what purpose we were created.

Why dont we just try listening to the one who created life? Do you think He might have a better idea about how to live well. How to put together a worthy life? His name is Jesus, and He is the Christ, the Messiah, the name above all names and He wants you, yes you, to know that there is a better way to live.

It starts the moment that you accept that you are far from perfect, that you have not lived as you should. He says “ I know child, I’ ve waited for you to come to me so that I can heal you with forgiveness and love. “

From that moment forward you are saved eternally, no longer is the future a question mark. You also are now able to live a life just doing what Christ taught. There are no guesses. It will bring you peace and a true friend for the rest of your life.

Flight 2019

Posted on by Thomas Smith

I found this on Facebook and thought you’d like it.

Hello, welcome to Flight #2019. We are prepared to take off into the New Year. Please make sure your Attitude and Blessings are secured and locked in an upright position. All self-destructive devices should be turned off at this time. All negativity, hurt and discouragement should be put away. Should we lose Altitude under pressure during the flight, reach up and pull down a Prayer. Prayers will automatically be activated by Faith. Once your Faith is activated, you can help assist with other passengers. There will be NO BAGGAGES allowed on this flight. The Captain (GOD) has cleared us for a safe takeoff. Now sit back and wait to land in the Destination of GREATNESS.
So come Take The Flight with me! ❤️

Poor Rudolph

Posted on by Thomas Smith

Baby Its really getting cold outside….. the world that is, not talking about the song. It seems that every tradition and icon is up for grabs. Every statue and history must be re done or taken down because a vocal few have become so zealous about creating ‘safe spaces” for people.

Rudolph is now a poster child for victimization of bullying. Santa has legalized human trafficking by keeping elves as virtual indentured servants. And the naughty/nice list is threatening to the well being of children by attempting to bribe and manipulate with presents.

As the world increasingly looks inward not upward, it continues to nit pick and pick apart every thing that should never have been made a big thing. Desperate for likes, and thumbs ups, and re-posts and re-tweets, there is an addiction to being worth something by being the latest trending post about something more and more ridiculous…

But that’s the issue isnt it? Wanting attention, wanting to matter, wanting to have some value and purpose. It is the emtpiness that is longing for a filling that is driving this. And it is the sullen silence of earth heard when the Angels proclaim “ Joy to the World”.

The Christ Emmanuel Child came to tell us we matter very much, that we are worth an incredible price, his life! He came that man no more should die…. Glory in excelsis Deo!

He was the light in dark streets, the one who could help us find inner peace in a world going increasingly, rapidly crazy! He can be your peace, your fulfillment if you allow Him to.

It is up to us to believe or not, but “us without God”, is making the world into a world where even the cherished childhood stories like Rudolphs’ get manipulated and co-oerced into being part of the Lunacy…. We can choose not to enter the Asylum. WE can choose to believe and preserve the faith handed down, and the wonderful traditions we have been given.