Thursday, February 23, 2012

I need a Doctor: Worship

Okay guys, this is a wrap for the Eminem "I need a Doctor" series... Surely you are seeing my point by now, there is so much in this song that needs to be turned to God! And here is the last little bit I've found... That bit not really being little at all...

"It literally feels like a lifetime ago
but I still remember like it was just yesterday though
you walked in...
whole room, cracked jokes...
went through friends, some of them I put on
but they just left, they said they was riding to the death
But where are they now?
now that I need them, I don't see none of them
all I see is Slim
all you fair-weather friends all I need is Him!"

Listen, it's part of life that people turn their backs on you... Sometimes even you will turn your back on yourself.  There are and will continue to be things about yourself that you find disappointment in, things you would like to change but can't seem to get a handle on and even things that make you feel unlovable... "... You can't fix you. If you could, you'd be fixed a long time ago. you need a "doctor".. who can heal your soul." - Kirk Franklin.  Sometimes it will feel like a lifetime ago since you've been able to see daylight but keep going because Jesus is not just a fair-weather friend... When you can't feel Him, see Him or Touch Him it's just because He is working on things for you and quite frankly sometimes He needs to work where you can't see Him because you would mess it up if you tried to help... Just like helping dad in the workshop; sometimes he has to use the saw or welder and there can't be little hands and eyes in the way because it's dangerous. He is still there, getting the job done and protecting you at the same time and God is no different in that respect.  All you really need is Him and He has not yet nor will he ever forsake us!

"All I know is you came to me when I was at my lowest
you picked me up, breathed new life in me
I owe my life to you..."

Isn't that exactly what Jesus did for each and all of us when he died on the cross!?  Rhetorical question! Yes, it is! And when we give our lives over to Him by following the 3 step plan of salvation Peter revealed in the first church service God will meet us where we are at! He will pick us up out of the mess we've created for ourselves and breath new life into us!

"but for the life of me, I don't see why you don't see like I do
but it just dawned on me you lost a son
demons fighting you, it's dark...
I don't think you realize what you mean to me
not the slightest clue
'Cause me and you were like a crew
I was like your sidekick...
But I'm out of options, there's nothing else I can do..."

I don't know why He did it, I don't know why God loves at all... I mean really, I can be pretty horrible sometimes!  I mean God loved us enough, wretched as we all are, to lose His only son for us! He could have stopped it all, the blood of God running out of Jesus' body pouring onto the dirt and people around... But love made Him continue without even the thought of turning back. In fact, He cried out for our forgiveness in the midst of His pain! The fact that Christ died for me even though He didn't have to leaves me with no other option I am willing to consider, I have to say something, do something for Him! So that's what I am doing, I am "Sharing the gift of Life" I spoke about last week and I am going to continually worship Him!

"God, I don't tell you nearly enough what you mean to me! I love that you walk with me and allow this little frame of a feeble human to be the 'sidekick' of God! I can scarcely believe you endured the hours of the Cross just to give me a chance to make a decision to live for you and with you! That's crazy to me, God, I would have never done that! No one I know would endure even one minute of the cross for another human being especially for one that had no connection to them at all! You amaze me and I love you!"

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I need a Doctor: Donor

This is the continuation of my seeing God in the lyrics of an Eminem rap! And really, admit it, it's becoming clearer for you!  I in no way believe this song was written for Christ, I'm not quite that naive, however I do believe it's super easy to take back for Him and that's what I'm about to do... See if you can figure out where I'm going with this before we get there in this blog!

"it was you who believed in me
when everyone was telling you don't sign me
Everyone at the label, let's tell the truth
you risked your career for me
I know it as well as you
nobody wanted the white kid
Dr., I'm crying in this booth
You saved my life..."

There has been so many times in my life when I felt no one believed in me... There have definitely been times I didn't believe in myself.  But Jesus believed in us when we were at our lowest, that's why he died on a cross for people who didn't even know His name yet, people who cared nothing for Him and people who were the ones spitting on his unrecognizable, blood soaked body as He hung from rusty spikes driven through his wrists dying in agony.  No one could talk Him out of His love for us... They tried not just when He was on the cross but through out His life when he would spend time with the needy... In fact, that's why they hated Him enough to kill Him. He treated everyone the same, refusing to see any difference between the rich and poor, not recognizing status or being swayed by the powerful. When no one wanted us but God risked everything for us! He saved our very lives, dying laden with our sinful nature so that we may live laden in His eternal glory!

I am so beyond thankful for everything Christ has done for us! So overwhelmed by his love and mercy extended daily on our behalf! I would do anything for Him!.. Or would I?  What is it that He would even want from us?  Can we really bring anything of worth to a God who has the whole universe at his disposal?  Actually, yes... And the next couple of lines of "I need a Doctor" have the answer! WHAT!!?? I know!

"now maybe it's my turn...
but I can never repay you, what you did for me is way more
but I ain't giving up faith and you ain't giving up on me
Get up Dr. I'm dying, I need you..."

We can never pay Him back, that's true... I mean really even if we die for Him we gain eternal life so we are still indebted.... Plus, our death would not be even in the same category of agony as death by crucifixion. So what can we do in return that Christ would actually want and be proud of?  Try to save a life!  He has given us His most precious gift, eternal life through His death and the only thing we can really do for Him is to try and connect someone else with that gift! Pay it forward, pass it on! Don't give up faith in others because Christ never has and never will give up faith in you! Just like the Organ Donor cards tell you, so do I of Christ "Share the gift of Life!" Tell someone about Jesus and his love for them, see no difference in people no matter their status, race, lifestyle but give everyone the same chance you had to know Him!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

I need a Doctor: Heartbeat

Most of you probably are not aware of this little factoid: I like rap... HAHAH! Yes, yes I do! Hey, it's not my fault I was raised across the tracks from the projects! ah! Anyway, someone I used to listen to frequently is Eminem, love that man's voice. A while ago I heard a "newish" Eminem song on an awards show... I wasn't actually even watching but it was on in the background at a friends house while I was there and it inspired this blog (maybe another mini-series actually!)

The song actually made me think of God, which if you've been a frequent Suzie-K reader you know I'm always turning secular lyrics around into "Jesus' Music" as I like to call it! By the way, if that last sentence just offended you, check yourself... God made our lips and created every musically inclined mind that writes music... If some of those minds decide to write music for someone/something other that God I think it is an awesome thing for Christians to turn it around and bring the music back to it's rightful destiny! I'm just takin' it back for Jesus y'all!

Last night one of my pastors, Jack Leaman, spoke on "Love God, Love People." Again, if you are a frequent reader of Suzie-K you know that is one of my life messages I try to share here frequently. So, I'm back to an Eminem song and the lyrics speaking to me about God and the hurting world around me... What are we doing? We must me reaching, caring, loving and helping or we are nothing at all! Have we become so involved in the lives we watch on our weekly TV shows that we've lost sight of the lives of those we come in contact with daily!? Have we become so self centered that we have forgotten to be kingdom-centered? Have we become so attached to social media and cell phones that we can't remember where we've placed out Bible nor the command to "GO YE" written in its pages!? If you have, you're not alone... I have forgotten those things in the past as well, and this is not another lecture but a call "back to reality... Oh there goes gravity..."

What were the lyrics that got me thinking about "Love God, Love People" before Jack even spoke about it?How could I translate an Eminem song in a spiritual way? Well, I'll answer the first question by writing some of the lyrics below and the second question you should be sensitive enough to answer on your own... But I will write my thoughts below each section... If you're still not "getting it," pray and read the book of Acts in the Bible and God will help you. The song is called "Doctor."

"I'm about to lose my mind
you've been gone for so long
I'm running out of time
I need a doctor
call me a doctor
I need a doctor, doctor
to bring me back to life"

Can't you just hear the cry of the people around you in that chorus?! They "need a doctor" and we know the great physician! And it has been a long time since he's been gone to heaven, we should be losing our minds that we are racing the rapture and running out of time to get these people to the doctor so He can "bring them back to life."

"It hurts when I see you struggle
you come to me with ideas
You say they're just pieces so I'm puzzled
'Cause the what I hear is crazy
But you're either getting lazy or you don't believe in you no more
seems like your own opinion's not one you can form
Can't make a decision you keep questioning yourself
Second guessing and it's almost like you're begging for my help
like I'm your leader..."

If it doesn't hurt you to see people around you struggling you need compassion... Remember the heartbeat of Christ is now and has always been a lost and dying world and our hearts need to be in sync with His or we are just as lost as anyone else.  We are not better than anyone else! We may have found Christ first but all that should mean is once you've found Him your job becomes leading others to Him! People have lost their belief in themselves, they can't form their own opinions anymore, even when they think they are a free spirit it's only because they aren't following the majority, they are still following something... It's like because they don't want to conform to some things they can't conform to anything and the decisions are already made for them; regardless of what they actually want they have to go against the grain always to be considered a "free spirit." But we know the ultimate free-er of the spirit and we must somehow get everyone we can acquainted with Him! 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Pits

Hey guys!  Sorry this blog is being posted later than usual! To be honest, I'm totally stressed! (Wow, you can kind of tell that by my over use of exclamation marks! Aaaah! I can't stop! haha!)  Anyway,  I'm not exactly sure what to write to you other than at times like these I realize even more how much I (and you) need God!  "If it were not for the Lord, who is on my side, I wouldn't know where I'd be!" All I can say is my Christian character is definitely being put to the test lately and I feel like I'm just barely holding on... But I suppose, "barely holding on" is still "holding on."

My prayer lately has consisted of "Lord thank you for this life I tend to forget to love lately.  No matter what happens I love you and you are still good to me, God! Don't allow me to forget that!"  Then I sit beside a friend with a bigger problem than I, sickness in her body and am reminded my life really is not bad at all!

I am reading the story of Joseph in Genesis this week in my Bible plan and let me tell you, I don't think I could have handled his situation at all! I mean really, could you hold on through being plotted against by your own family, knowing they actually wanted you dead... You think for a minute you may be okay if you can just climb out of this well they've thrown you into, or perhaps you will be saved if a Sheppard brings his sheep by for some water... Then, strangely you family shows up and gets you out themselves, a little ray of hope they've had a change of heart until you see the money exchange hands as your own sibling pushes you to the ground at the feet of your new master... Yes, master, you are officially a slave being taken away from everyone and everything you know into a strange country where you don't even speak the native language. And worst of all in your eyes you had one piece of home, one piece of your parents... A coat your father made for you.. You had one piece of home... Just before selling you, your brother tore the very coat off your back. After a few years in slavery in a country you didn't know, you start to find some comfort... After all, you've learned the language and your master has actually been listening to you because of the "good luck" that just seems to follow you, everything you touch just seems to grow into something profitable for your master!  But then some hussy lies about you and that's it, no questioning, no trial, no chances, you're thrown into jail... And not just any jail, a dark, cold, wet dungeon.  You spend years in that jail cell, but as far as prisoners go, your stay isn't completely unbearable because you've found the favor of the warden... He's noticed your kindness and actually has put you in charge of your part of the pit... In charge of a pit, I'm not so sure that's a great thing but at least it's something to "hold onto."  You've met a lot of other prisoners, mended their wounds and tried to encourage them, most have rotted and died in their chains but one, a cup bearer, actually made it out and back into the king's house! You've done a favor for him and he is supposed to remember you and ask your master to give you a second chance but after days, weeks and certainly after the first month has passed you realize he's forgotten all about his promises.  Two more years pass and you've all but lost any hope of even seeing sunshine again let alone reclaiming a life of your own...  I mean, I would have given up long ago! I wouldn't make it in a well for more than a few hours, I certainly wouldn't make it through the beatings of slavery, and if by some grace I did make it through those two situations you can forget about ever seeing me again once I was sent to a jail pit!

When you think of people you know who have life threatening illness or a story like that of Joseph you have to admit, our situations pale in comparison... Still, they are real to us and if we are being honest with ourselves, it's scary to think how long we may have to spend in our respective "pits."  But, God is always there, even when we can't see Him, hear Him or sense His presence, He is there.  So I guess I will just share with you some of what is encouraging me to keep going... First is a book (I know Teri-Lyn, you're shocked aren't you... Well I have to confess I was read to haha!) it's called "The Prisoner in the Third Cell" by Gene Edwards.  I can guarantee you a book like that will change your outlook on what is going on in your life. (Another Gene Edwards book I love is "A Tale of Three Kings" it's actually, probably one of my favorite books of all time and a quick read, which if you know me at all you know I like.) Lastly, music... Music has been my friend through so many of my life's tragedies and disappointments.  Just making a playlist of songs written for God and listening through the faithful words can help you realize that though you're waiting to hear, see and sense God maybe He is waiting for the same from you... Maybe He wants you to take the first step toward Him, remind Him of your love instead of asking Him for vengeance... Just listen to a couple of songs, let go of the darkness and chill of the pit, close your eyes and send you heart to search for God... Sing some of the words to Him, love Him instead of requiring from Him, just for a moment.  Soon enough you'll be reminded He is closer than you knew.

And lastly, back to the story of Joseph... It was twenty years between the time Joseph got a promise from God and when Joseph was in that pit... TWENTY YEARS! Even worse, there is not even a record of Joseph ever hearing from God during those twenty years! Can you imagine?! But Joseph kept loving God, helping others and grasping hope.  Two years after that cup bearer made it into the house of the king someone opens the door of the pit and calls for Joseph.  Still not knowing what exactly what was going on, Joseph is escorted up the steps, into the sunlight than now hurts his eyes and he is told to clean up, put robes on that do not belong to him and he will be escorted to the king... I know you are all thinking he would be excited but just think about yourself in that position for a moment... Yes, it could be good news but it could also be that you are going to be put to death... Maybe you've waited in a pit only to see sunshine for a moment before your life is ended, still think you would be excited?  Scary. Still Joseph stepped into the presence of the king and his life ended. His life of fear, sadness, harshness and darkness... The king asked Joseph for a favor and when Joseph gladly obliged the King was so grateful and respected Joseph so much he took Joseph to a window overlooking the kingdom and said "Look as far as the eye can see is mine... And what is mine I put you in charge of." Joseph's heart relaxed, tears filled his eyes, even though he had no idea what God was doing and still didn't know why he had to go through all of what he went through, it was over.  In the end the promise God had given to Joseph was fulfilled and he was even reunited with the father he thought he has lost along with his coat.

You may be in a bad place in life now, and it could be a long haul even from here... But find something to keep you going, hold onto something, encourage others and yourself in the process. God will come through!