Daily Prompt – Thank God, Hallelujah!

Prompt: “You get some incredibly, amazingly, wonderfully fantastic news. What’s the first thing you do?”

My first ideation was to dedicate an entire post to a description of my happy dance, a series of gyrating seizure-like movements that loudly broadcast my jubilee, but I doubt my readers would be too interested – although they should be. It’s a class act spectacle, really.

This post is actually intended to be on more of a serious note. When reading this prompt, the phrase “wonderfully fantastic news” automatically linked me to the thought of getting my first college acceptance letter (hopefully happening in the near future). This may not be applicable to all readers, but make the prompt relate personally – your boss informs you of a raise, a pregnancy test reveals itself positive, Annie reminds you the sun will come out tomorrow – whatever would plaster a smile on your face. Now what do you do?

When I have the pleasure of experiencing such an occurrence, I have to thank my God first and foremost. “Every good and perfect gift is from above” (James 1:17) and I am obligated to “give thanks to the God of Heaven” (Psalm 136:26). I cannot emphasize enough my gratitude for my Savior and all the blessing that occur in my life every day.

Three years ago, my family was very close to having our house foreclosed. The only way to reach economic sufficiency would be to cut cost in unessential areas; it seemed the only resolution was to remove my brother and me from our private Christian school in order to save money on tuition expenses. However, after months of stress and struggling, good news arrived – the company my parents were negotiating with approved the lowering of our monthly mortgage payment, saving both our house and mine and my brother’s education arrangements. God provided not only our monetary needs, but He also protected me spiritually – at that time, if I had transferred to a different school, I have no doubt in my mind that I wouldn’t be where I am today. I specifically remember praying together as a family, thanking God that our housing situation had been resolved. Now looking back, I also thank Him for protecting me from further negative influences and allowing me to stay at Schaumburg Christian, which ultimately became the location in which I found my Savior nearly a year ago. “God is my refuge and strength” (Psalm 46:1), and I pray that the habit of thankfulness to the Provider reoccurs in every instance of receiving good news.

written for The Daily Post, Daily Prompt: Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.

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In Times of Doubt: Evidences of Salvation

It is not uncommon for Christians to question their salvation, whether the theory be derived by unconfessed sin in one’s life, or the feeling that one has not repented fully because parts of his previous sinful lifestyle are still present. Those are just a couple of examples, but there are various reasons as to why one may doubt his salvation. God states clearly that one cannot lose his salvation (John 10:28), so why do Christians so often ask the question, “How do I know that I’m saved?” Scripture gives us a distinct indication as to what should be occurring in a Christian’s life – if the following applies, said Christian has no need to fret about his entrance into the pearly gates.

If one has accepted salvation, supernatural love towards others will be apparent. Christians are commanded to view Christ as an exemplar in their lives; Jesus embodied agape love, meaning he cared for others unconditionally (Ephesians 5:1-2). This being said, followers of God are to conduct the same sacrificial love towards others, despite another’s views or wrong doings (John 13:34). If one does not express this trait, he may reconsider if he has truly been saved, being that Scripture states, “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:8 NKJV).

Spiritual growth occurs in the lives of those who are saved. The term “spiritual growth” refers to the concept that a saved individual conquers trials through the power of the Holy Spirit, rather than allowing hardships to overtake one’s demeanor and cause lack of trust in God. The Bible reveals that God will never permit a trial that one cannot handle (1 Corinthians 10:13) and that in the midst of tribulation, He will protect his people (Psalm 46:1).When a saved individual is burdened, he remembers these promises and relies on God’s provision (Philippians 4:19). Those who have accepted salvation have the courage to grow spiritually because they know “all things work together for good” (Romans 8:28).

When a true child of God sins, he experiences genuine brokenness. This refers to one feeling remorseful after sinning, and the concept is shown by example numerous times in Scripture. In Psalm 51:2-4, David laments his faults and pleas to God saying, “Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, And cleanse me from my sin.” Isaiah declared his regret for partaking in impure speech (Isaiah 6:5), and Peter “wept bitterly” after denying Christ (Matthew 26:75). Guilt is followed by acknowledgement and the desire to get right with God; every man is a sinner (Romans 3:23), and it is imperative for a Christian to confess his sin (Proverbs 28:13) – this is a common occurrence in the life of a saved individual.  

Lastly, one who has received salvation is a willing messenger, meaning he is fervently seeking opportunities to share the gospel with the unsaved. Christians are to obey God’s commandments (Psalm 119:10), and Scripture emphatically orders a follower of God to “make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). This concept is direct and absolute – the Bible states frequently the importance of the Great Commission (Mark 16:15, Psalm 96:3, Isaiah 12:4), and those who are saved enthusiastically participate.

These listed evidences either caused one to feel assured of their salvation, or provoked further doubt. If the latter, it is not too late to commit one’s life to Christ – “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10). Salvation through Christ is the only way to achieve a life of purpose and an eternity in Heaven. 

9/11 Commemoration Poem – Daily Prompt: Thank You

At five years old, I hardly understood

The tragedy that had just occurred.

I vaguely remember my kindergarten teacher

Frantically racing from one room to another

Desperately trying to gather information

And hold back emotions that would worry the children.

At that time, I knew nothing of terrorism;

I couldn’t understand why such men

Would harm our country in the name of religion.

Shame be to those individuals’ poisonous decisions,

But we can now reflect on 9/11

And applaud the citizens who showed great heroism.

I commend the emergency personnel who blared their sirens,  

And all those who took control of the chaotic situation.

During this time, Americans supported each other

And prayers were recited with somber demeanor.

But despite the devastation, many found comfort in God’s word,

For we do know that all things work together for good. 

 

written for The Daily Post – Daily Prompt: Thank You 

Romans 8:28, God Bless America. Image