For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.

  That’s from 1 Timothy 4:8. Sometimes Christian’s present that scripture as an excuse for ignoring exercise. But you’ll notice it doesn’t say physical training is of NO value. Furthermore, trying to show my appreciation for the free gift of grace many times reminds me of dietary discipline.

I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do-- this I keep on doing.(Romans 7:15-16, 18-19)

   If you are not a student of the Scriptures, I hope you’ll explore the material posted in our "Faith" section. I hope we can present material that demonstrates the practicality of God’s holy Word. I’m especially excited about a forthcoming series focusing on the Jewish roots of Christianity.

Faith  Articles Index
  

Look out, God will sneak up on you...as he did Payne Stewart

    This goes back a decade or more, but it's still worth remembering. I was interested in reading how Payne Stewart forged his relationship with the Lord. According to memorial service coverage in the Orlando Sentinel (Oct. 30, 1999), the Stewarts sent their children to a Christian school operated by a Baptist Church. I suppose a lot of people place their children in a better environment, religious conviction notwithstanding.

    The Sentinel story said the Stewart children "brought the Christian life home with them." His son asked Stewart to wear a WWJD (What would Jesus do?) bracelet in a golf tournament.

    It was at his children's urging that Stewart began attending Sunday School services and an informal fellowship group. Two years before his death, Stewart and one of the ministers from the Baptist Church struck up a conversation at a church family outing.

    Friends noticed the marked difference the final years of his life. Proclaiming that he'd never be a "bible thumper" and shooting bogey on Christian protocol by referring to First Thessalonians as "First Theologians" and saying the Book of John was "not too boring," the Stewart story has a refreshing realism about it.

     I have friends who tell me after becoming Christians they used to smoke marijuana and read the bible. The lesson is that God loves you where you are . . . but he loves you too much to leave you in that condition. It's constant challenge, change and growth, from the milk of the word to hopefully the meat.

    The changes God desires to see in my life are for my good, not so he can exercise authority over me. Parents know what I mean. God wants only the best for his children.

     I can't quickly recall the details of who, where, and when of this story, but at a time and place perhaps centuries the mortality rate at childbirth was one quarter. Then somebody took note of the sanitation directives in the Levitical Laws presented to the children of Israel. Once the surgical staff started washing their hands, the mortality rate dropped dramatically.

  God cleanses things in our life for our own good.

The role his children played, apparently, in Payne Stewart's conversion strikes me as sweet. It's typical of the way God works, or may we say, par for the course.

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