The Journey Thoughts

December 2, 2016

It's not what we do when we are in church that reveals our faith, but what
we do outside the doors.  We must be careful that our faith is as strong
outside, as it is on Sunday morning.  Now I know that we can say, 'How can
our faith be different, just because it is the Sabbath?'  It's not that the
faith is different, it is more that our character may change.  Consider this
Scripture: "We have an altar from which those who serve the tabernacle do
not have the right to eat. For the bodies of those animals whose blood is
brought into the most holy place by the high priest as a sin offering are
burned outside the camp. Therefore Jesus also suffered outside the gate, so
that He might sanctify the people by His own blood. Let us then go to Him
outside the camp, bearing His disgrace. For we do not have an enduring city
here; instead, we seek the one to come. Therefore, through Him let us
continually offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, that is, the fruit of our
lips that confess His name. Don't neglect to do what is good and to share,
for God is pleased with such sacrifices." Hebrews 13:10-16  You see our
altar of praise is our community, and our sacrifice at the altar is our
praise of Him who saved us. Jesus wasn't put to death in the temple, but
outside where his sacrifice was present for all to see.  God wants us to be
living examples of sacrifice of praise.  People stopped putting bumper
stickers, showing their love for Christ, on their vehicles because they
didn't want to be a bad example of a Christian by their behavior behind the
wheel.  And I say to that, if you can't be a good example of Christ, then
don't put anything on, praising God, but when you think about it, it is a
good example of us offering our sacrifice outside the building of the
church.  Inside all know we are believers, and we tend to great each other
with love and in the name of Christ, and that is good, but what do we do
during the week?   Will others see our sacrifice in the community where we
live? Do they know we stand for Christ, and is our behavior that of a
Christ-follower?  The altar of Christ for us is the heart of worship, of
praise for the One who saved us from our sins.  It doesn't have to be that
we are walking around telling everyone that they are going to hell because
of their sin, but rather, we are to be Christ to them.  We are to show
compassion, to care enough to reveal a heart of praise for Christ outside
the walls of the church.  That's the people Christ wants us to reveal Him
to.  And we do it by our own sacrifice of being the people we are on Sunday,
the Sacrifice of Praise from our lips and with the heart, in the midst of
people everywhere we walk.   I have been doing quite a bit of business in
Home depot recently, and every time I am waited on by this one particular
cashier, she is humming a Christmas song, and always, and I mean always,
after I completed my business, she tells me to have a blessed day, and God
bless you.   This is a woman whose sacrifice of praise is outside the gate,
outside the walls of comfort, and I can see in her face that her blessing is
real, it is not phony, for her whole countenance is one that shines Christ.
I am reminded every time I see her that I too, am an example of Christ, even
when I am in a hurry, I am always given the opportunity to offer praise to
my Lord, for what He has done for me.  So let's think about this today! When
you are outside the gate today, will others see your sacrifice of praise?
Will they be given a little infusion of hope, because you are revealing
Christ to the person who stands in front of you?

Pastor Andy

Heavenly Father, I pray Father, for Your light to be what shines for us
today outside the camp. I pray that we will always reveal a sacrifice of
praise because of the life You have given us.  Lord, we love Your word, and
we love to give our praise to You for all You have done for us, and in us,
so Lord, I pray that You will help us to always reveal a praiseful heart to
all we encounter in our daily walk.  I pray also for these: Cherie, the
Barrett's Josh, Carlee, Eric, Peggy, Rheba, Ada, Carol's family, Mary,
Dillon, Tara, Kristena, Kristen, Marcy, Kenny, Carolyn, Gene, Terry, Angie,
Isabel, Ellen, Virginia, William, Don, Dwight, Jim, Vanessa, Becky, the
Markle Family, the Young family, Travis, Max, Rita, Pastor Berkey, Nancy,
June, JT, Eva, Candace, Meredith, Barbara, Mike S., Ramona, Loren, Ben,
Robby, Kathy, Montella, Charlie, Kim, Nada, Shelly and her mom, Richard and
his dad, Pam and her son, Kelly and her son, Julissa, Abby, Malachi, Corbin,
Ryan, Olivia, Jeremiah, Joanna, Tom, Evelyn, Joy, Ruth, BJ, Ida, Betty,
Briggs church, Jackie Ann, Tonia, Todd, Liam, Aiden, Alan, Fisher, Tuly,
Michelle, Trevor, Maria, Choya, Alex, Ken, Sandy, Andrea, Shannon, Robert,
Pat, Ryan, Tyson, Wendy, Joyce, Shelbi, Gus, Lisa, Alice, David, Phyllis,
Devon Marlaina, Cynthia, Johnny, Annette, Kim, Gary, Gavin, Shawn, Laurie,
Heather, Codi, Ron, Deane, Dan, Pam, Mike, Austin, Harriet, Fred, Dotty,
James, Scott, April, Craig, Hunter, Asher, Lynette, Patrick, Kathy,
Jennifer, Abe, Trent, Garret, Mayeaux, Ben, Jason, Ashley, Marc, Macy, Jade,
Bob, Tracy, Abraham, Elijah, Japheth, Mike, Megan, Matt, Liz, Matt, Bethany,
Jeff, Laura, Carmello, Kaitlyn, Tim, Michele, Lord, may our sacrifice of
praise be seen by all as we live outside the camp, but live at the altar of
Your love in our hearts, for I ask all this in Jesus name.

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