7
Jun

Home Run Series: Heading to Home Plate

Home Run

Wow! Here we are at the bottom of the ninth ending, and our series is coming to a close. We have rounded all the bases and are headed to home plate. Home plate represents “connection to God”. In others words, what is your relationship to God –are you connected?

Consider this, no one can get to first base without starting at home plate, nor can anyone finish a run without returning and crossing over home plate. The Bible says, Jesus is “the Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end.” (Revelation 1:8) In order to run the bases successfully, we need to align our lives in such a way that He permeates it from beginning to end. Every time we run the bases in order something amazing happens –we strengthen our walk with Christ, and our relationship with Him is more balanced. Life becomes less about us and more about Him. John the Baptist said it best:

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31
May

Home Run Series: Who’s on Third?

Today is the day we make it to third base! We have talked about first base (i.e., character) and second base (i.e., community or relationships). Now, we turn to the base representing competency, or how we see success.

How do you measure success in your life? Perhaps it is by how long you have been married or held a certain job, or by how well your children behave, or by how much you have financially. But consider this –have you measured success by how deep your life reflects Jesus?

Certainly, God wants us to have a successful life. Jesus stated:

The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. John 10:10

Jesus’ expectation, however, is that our success in life will be poured out on others!

I, like a lot folks, relied heavily on my own man-made success, which was my nursing career. By the world’s standards, I was pretty successful. But when my career took over my life, things got messy. God would ultimately use the experiences I went through to shift my focus. He would build both character in me and community around me so that when new opportunities came, I would be prepared to walk in His will and not in my own.

What most fail to understand is life lived for God is a win-win. Not only will we live a life on earth that protects us from utter destruction and blesses us beyond our beliefs, but we will also be rewarded in heaven. Whatever we are willingly to let go of God will multiply.

 “Yes,” Jesus replied, “and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the Kingdom of God, will be repaid many times over in this life, and will have eternal life in the world to come.” Luke 18:29-30

Once I allowed God to train me through personal Bible study, small-group participation, church sermons, and Christian fellowship, I was ready. Once I learned that God can be trusted, my life rose to a level of success that the world can never offer.

Let me wrap up this week with an excerpt from Love Echoed Back that embodies this thought (click on image to enlarge):

Paper and Ink

Are you ready to head to home plate? Next week, we will complete the last leg in our trip around the bases, finishing our home run. See you then!!


 Join Believers Church for our new series:  Home Run

Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

 

 

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24
May

Home Run Series: Who’s on Second?

Last week, we talked about building our character, which was represented by first base. The week, we’re on second base discussing why relationships (founded in Christian love) are so important!

If God is anything, He is a God who is all about relationship. From the beginning of creation, God planned for us to be in relationship with Him.

Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. … Genesis 1:26

Notice two things:

1. God has always existed in relationship –God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Ghost are represented in this verse by “us.” The Trinity is the most powerful display of relationship that exists.

2. He wants us to be like the Trinity, always in “relationship,” not only with each other, but most importantly with Him.

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15
May

Home Run Series: Who’s On First?

This week, get ready! Life is standing on the pitcher’s mound waiting to throw the ball, and it’s time to make a play that leads toward first base. First base represents our inner self and the work we need to do to get ourselves in line with God’s will for our lives.

Proverbs 16:2 states:

I know for me; on any given day, I have to fight what I think is right for me versus what God says is right for me. That inner struggle builds character. Will I do what needs to be done to stay close to God or will I do what I feel like instead?

The biggest pressure in a baseball game is in the bottom of the ninth inning, when the bases are loaded and there are two outs. Scoring a run can be the difference between winning and losing the game. Does life feel that way most days? Are your bases loaded? Perhaps you have a relationship or marriage on first, kids on second, and your job on third. Or maybe your bases are loaded a little different, but no matter how life stacks up for you–God’s will must be in it, in order for you to have the character you need to be a top scorer. When the pressure is on, whatever is inside you will come out! You can count on it.

When that moment comes, will it be self-control, grace, mercy, and compassion that you display or will it be arrogance, selfishness, or jealousy?

God wants to work on us from the inside out, but we have to be willing to stand in the moment. Are we willing to let Him make the call on which play will be next? Are we willing to swing the bat with all that is within us for His honor and glory? Or will we simply try to bunt the ball on our own and see how far we get?

God doesn’t promise this character- building stuff will be easy. Sometimes we will strike out, but if we let God work in us and through us, we will soon be on our way around first base and going to second.

However, our biggest obstacle to first base is pride:

Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us. Romans 12:3 NLT

So, humble yourself to the ultimate coach, and let Him steer you to first base and beyond! Let’s play ball!


Join Believers Church for our new series:  Home Run

Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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