Kim Jaggers

Kim Jaggers
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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

is there more than hollow, chocolate bunnies?

Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved
Acts 4:12

It is not politically correct to even bring it up. I might offend someone but this Easter week has to make you think. Why would a man claim to be the Son of God, and when given the chance to save his life by refuting this statement... instead walk to a cross and die a horrible death? Was He a lunatic or the Savior? Perhaps no other question is more relevant than Pilot’s “What will you do with this Jesus?” Was Jesus a liar? Was he just a good man or was He God’s only Son? Is He one of many ways to Heaven or, as He says, “the only way”. Is it even polite to ask you what you think? The more culturally acceptable way is to tell you why Christianity works for me and what I get out of it…. I should try to “sell” you on it. But the most loving thing to do might be to quit “beating around the bush”, as my Mom used to say, and just tell you the truth.

Friend, you are dying. We all are. One day you will take your last breath on this earth. Where will you spend eternity? Will you float away to nothingness? Is there an after-life? How do you get there? There are lots of theories out there. There are lots of religions but none more exclusive than Christianity. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) According to Jesus, there is no other way – all the other religions are false, empty and leading to Hell. Jesus called Himself the Son of God and said there is one way to Heaven and eternal life – not many ways. He says He is the only Savior. 1 John 5: 12 says, “He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” Could He be more clear?

So what are you going to do with that? What are you going to do with this Jesus? History documents His birth, His death and His words. The Bible says if you believe Him you will have eternal life and if you do not know Him…you will spend eternity in Hell. To some that may sound harsh…but for those of us who know Him and know His words to be true, the most loving thing to do is to tell you is the truth….Easter isn’t about hollow, chocolate bunnies. This weekend the world will take note and some will celebrate the act of our Savior who gave His life so we could live. Those who follow Him believe His blood sacrifice is the only atonement for our sins and the only way we can be near a Holy God in Heaven. Jesus offers life and life more abundantly (John 10:10) but this life can be found in no other name than Jesus Christ (Acts 4:12). The question is…do you believe Him?

Oh God, I cannot know you or approach your throne in prayer except by the blood of your Son – Jesus Christ. Salvation comes from no other name. May I be keenly aware of all you have done for me when you conquered death on that cross. I trust you and you alone for my salvation. Thank you Jesus for loving me with a perfect, unending love. May I live my life to point others to You. There is no other way. You are the truth and the life – may I follow you all the days of my life. Amen.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

He has everything... but wants me

If we are faithless, 
He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself.
2 Tim 2:13

If we could fathom the smallest sliver of the truth of it… we would be blown away. Sometimes I feel it when I am caught up in a praise song at church. I read about it every day in my Bible. I look back on my life and I know it to be completely true. God loves me with a deep, wide, unending, perfect love. Words on a page are incredibly inadequate to describe His love. He knows my every wicked thought and every self-centered deed yet His love for me compelled Him to leave His throne in Heaven to bare my ugly sin on a horrible cross. He was mocked, bloodied and beaten yet His eyes remained steadfastly on me. His desire is to be with me, and not just for a time, but for all eternity.

Yet, I have often forsaken Him and forgotten Him – caught up in the cares of this world. I repeatedly fail Him but He has never failed me. Instead, He sings over me (Zeph 3:17). He calls me the apple of His eye (Deut 32:10). He tells me He will never leave me nor forsake me (Deut 31:8). He forgives me over and over and He gently leads me to what is best for me (Isa 40:11). He never stops thinking of me (Isa 49:15). His plans for me are all good—better than I could ask or imagine (Eph 3:20). He is my powerful helper – the maker of Heaven and Earth (Ps 121:2). His actions towards me are completely good (Ps 119:68). He cradles me in His love and binds up my broken heart—giving me freedom instead of despair (Isa 61). Nothing…no one, no power, not even death can separate me from His love (Rom 8:38-39). He says even if I am faithless – He will remain faithful (2 Tim 2:13). How can I describe or understand this kind of love? It blows me away.

I cannot fathom that a God who has everything wants me. I am His desire and He knows I will never be truly His from “have to” or “supposed to”. He knows religion and empty rules of men will never cause me to love Him. He wants my heart. He desires my love and it is His love that causes me to love Him. I want to be with Him and follow Him because I am deeply in love with Him. His love fills me up. His love is my security. He is my comfort. He is strength in the storm. He alone completely satisfies me. And friend, He wants to satisfy you. His loving arms are open wide and His desire is for you. Does that blow you away?

Father, I know I can never fully understand the depths of your love. Thank you for loving me. Help me to love you with all my heart, all my mind and all my strength. Thank you for always pursuing me. Draw me closer to you and help me to follow you all the days of my life. I know you are leading me to your loving arms and one day my eyes will behold what my mind can only imagine. I love you Lord. Amen.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Freedom not Confusion

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Gal 5:1

“Mom, they said if you get your puberty, you are supposed to tell the school nurse immediately”. My daughter had just seen the 5th grade, “boys-in-one-room-girls–in-another” movie and felt quite confident of her understanding of the material. I chuckled to myself at her confusion over just “what about puberty” might necessitate a trip to the school nurse. We all laugh at silly mistakes and confusion… but there are certain things about which we simply cannot remain confused if we want life and peace. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free (Gal 5:1). This freedom is for now …not just later in Heaven. When we understand we are free from the penalty of sin and exercise the authority given to us as our inheritance (Eph 1:18-22) we experience true freedom. This freedom is ours because of what Christ did for us… not what we have done. Since we didn’t earn it… we can’t lose it. We have been declared “righteous”… this isn’t who we are becoming… this is who we are now and we need to clearly understand all it means. God’s truth sets us free--not our emotions or our feelings. When we know who we are in Christ … we can walk in it, enjoy life, rest in peace and have hope.

Do you know who you are? Are you enjoying all it means? God is withholding nothing from you. Read this excerpt from His Passion Ministries:

Since I am in Christ, By the Grace of God…I am now acceptable to God (justified) and completely forgiven. I live in peace with Him (Romans 5:1). The sinful person I used to be died with Christ, and sin no longer rules my life (Romans 6:1-6). I am free from the punishment (condemnation) my sin deserves (Romans 8:1). I have been placed in Christ by God’s doing (I Cor 1:30). I have received God ‘s Spirit in my life. I can recognize the blessings He has given me (I Cor 2:12). I have been given the mind of Christ. He gives me His wisdom to make the right choices (I Cor 2:16). I have been bought with a price; I am not my own; I belong to God (I Cor 6:19,20). I am God’s possession, chosen and secure in Him (sealed). I have been given the Holy Spirit as a promise of my inheritance to come (2 Cor 1:21,22; Eph 1:13,14). Since I have died, I no longer live for myself but for Christ (2 Cor 5:14,15). I have been made acceptable to God (righteous) (2 Cor 5:21).

In Christ, you are significant, accepted and secure. You are His bride and you are beautiful to Him (Rev 21:2). You are precious to God and whoever touches you touches the apple of His eye (Zech 2:8). This is truth. The enemy will try to confuse you and tell you just the opposite…take these thoughts captive and refute them (2 Cor 10:5). Read the Bible—God’s love letter to you, know who you are, walk in it and enjoy all it means.

Prayer: God, it blows my mind that you chose to die for me and that your blood makes me Holy. You require nothing but my acceptance of this free gift. Help me to understand who I am because of what you have done. Help me to enjoy this freedom that you have freely given to me. Give me spiritual wisdom and understanding to know truth and refute the lies of the enemy and enjoy all you have for me. I love you Lord. Amen.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

"Mommy, You Grumpy"

Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days. Psalm 90:14

When Ben was little he used to remark “Mommy you grumpy. You not do your Bible Study today?” Funny but true, my entire mood was closely tied to the time I spent with my Savior in the morning. To this day, the same is still true…I need Jesus everyday! My daily level of satisfaction and joy is directly tied to my intentional desire to be surrendered in time and obedience to my Lord. When I meet with Him, He fills every empty place. His guidance is spot-on. His love is unfailing. He and He alone is my rock so when hard times come… I don’t fall apart. He is my confidence to say “no” to temptation. He is my merciful Savior who forgives me when I fail. He is my joy that makes every day better. He is everything to me.

As I have spent time with my Savior over the years, I am increasingly convinced of His desire is to satisfy us. He is living water and she who drinks from him will never grow thirsty again (John 4:13). Yet, I see many Christians who remain unsatisfied … though few would rarely admit it. In each case, I notice a lack of complete surrender of every area of their lives to Jesus and it is these areas that remain their source of dissatisfaction. For some, that lack of surrender is in an area of sin. For others it is simply a lack of surrender of time spent daily with the Savior being refreshed with His Living Water.

I wonder… are you satisfied? Only when you daily surrender every area of your life to Jesus will you find freedom, satisfaction and joy. Our Savior is all about real, run-to-Him, daily relationship. He is personal. He wants us to enjoy His goodness here in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13) but it requires that we “drink of Him” daily and allow His Living Water to permeate every facet of our lives….only then will we be truly satisfied, “sing for joy and be glad all our days”.

Prayer: Oh Jesus, I love You. I want You every day. Search me—even the deep things and show me any area that I am holding back from You. I know satisfaction is found in you alone and in a daily surrender of everything to You. Help me to follow You. Help me to enjoy Your presence. Real, lasting satisfaction can be found in nothing else but You. Oh Lord help me make time with you a priority. Amen.