Sunday, December 27, 2009

A Lesson in Human Psychology - Nease Style!

My daughter, my son and I went to the movies after a run to Starbucks a few weeks ago.  We had not finished our coffee when we got to the theater and we were not sure if they would allow us to have outside drinks in the theater, so we were left in a quandary.  What followed was strangely psychologically intriguing as we all three reacted in ways that totally reflect our personalities...

Stephanie:  Stephanie is very cautious, never does anything to offend anyone and is super sweet.  Her personality is always "Avoid confrontation at all costs."  So....Stephanie chugged her coffee in the car before we approached the ticket counter and then ended up sick to her stomach as we approached the theater.

Tommy:  Tommy is a rebel.  He is one who takes risks, enjoys a challenge and is always angry that the movie theaters charge more than they should for food and drink so he has no issue with bringing his own food or drink in.  So....he took the coffee and put it inside of his jacket and zipped it up.  There was a problem, was spilling out all over him and he got wet and the coffee burned his skin and then he smelled like Starbucks for the rest of the day.

Me:  I've learned by life experience that "we have not because we ask not".  I did not want to chug my coffee because I knew it would make me sick, but my convictions would not allow me to hide it and I said to my kids "You're over-reacting..let's just ask what we should do and then we will be able to make a decision."  So....I asked the lady as I purchased my tickets if it would be okay if I took my coffee into the movie theater.  She warmly replied "Sure!  No problem."

At that point, my kids looked at each other and started cracking up laughing as they realized their decisions completely reflected their personalities and mine reflected mine. Often we think we know what we are up against but honestly we don't know until we ask or take a concerted effort to find out!  Hopefully, they learned that things aren't always what they seem...

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Fleeting Fame

For the past month, they were celebrated.  People dressed them up, told stories around them, prayed near them, lit them up and hung precious family keepsakes on them.  They stood tall, beautiful and lush.

Soon, they will be in a pile, stacked up, lying on their side with decorations taken off of them, lights stripped off and the only thing that is left from their month or so of glory is a few shiny tinsels left on the branches as they sit in the "recycle" pile, awaiting their destiny.

My heart broke as I saw the huge pile of used Christmas trees in a pile in my neighborhood.  How could we be so cruel?  What a sight it is - especially for someone like me who loves Christmas so much - to see a pile of beautiful trees who were still green and beautiful, but already forgotten.

I suppose that is how it is in life.  My thoughts turned to the way people chase fame.  People want to be loved, adored, lifted up and celebrated.  If we are honest, this would be something each of us has a desire for deep down in our human soul.  But what does fame really have to offer?

If you look around at those who are famous, you will notice a couple of consistent principles.  First, fame is fleeting.  Just like the Christmas trees, people can be celebrated, adored and decorated for a season, but inevitably, the world will move on and the famous one must work even harder to be noticed.  I've often thought that desire to stay in the limelight is what ruins so many people.  Is it better to have had it and lost it or never have had it at all?  We've seen it time and time again - people just don't stay famous once they get there unless there is tremendous effort and marketability.  So many child actors have gone down some dark roads because of this life pattern.

The season comes and goes, and so do the trees.  Next year, we get a new one, maybe even a taller one with lusher branches!  The world always looks for something better, something with more to offer.  It is impossible to please everyone, all the time.

Secondly, even though they are celebrated (almost worshipped at times) those who are famous are often lifeless inside - like the Christmas tree who has been uprooted.  The tree relies on people to keep it alive and watered, just as a famous person must rely on people's attention to remain famous.  But eventually, the trees will die without the root, and so do people.  It may look good on the outside, but inside, there is often a lifeless soul who is dependent on the care of others.

This world has nothing to offer us, in reality.  The desire we have deep down to be loved and adored comes from our deep desire for a relationship with God mixed with a very misled attempt to fill it with something fleeting.  In order to experience lasting love, adoration and celebration, we can only find that in one place - in the arms of our Savior, Jesus Christ. If we seek Him first above everything else, everything will fall into place in our lives (Matt. 6:33) - including our need for acceptance.  We can find that acceptance and love in the arms of our Savior.

Our tossed out Christmas trees serve as a reminder to us to seek God's approval above all else.  He will never put unrealistic expectations on us.  He will never look for someone "better" or "more attractive".  He will never leave us, He will never forsake us.  He will always keep us as the apple of His eye! 

Even Jesus Christ, the greatest man to ever walk the face of the earth, was rejected by people.  His fame came from His obedience to God, not winning people's approval.  Thank God!  We do not have to be uprooted to find the love we so desperately crave!  Our roots just need to dig even deeper into the True Root, Jesus Christ, where we will find Living Water for our souls.

Jeremiah 17:5-8 This is what the Lord says:  "Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans, who rely on human strength and turn their hearts away from the Lord....But blessed are those who trust in the Lord and have made the LORD their hope and confidence!  They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water.  Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought.  Their leaves stay green and they never stop producing fruit."

1 Thessalonians 2:4 ...Our purpose is to please God, not people.  He alone examines the motives of our hearts.

Galatians 1:10 Obviously, I'm not trying to win the approval of people, but of God.  If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ's servant.

1 Peter 2:4 You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God's temple.  He was rejected by people, but He was chosen by God for great honor.

(Note: I actually posted this last year...but it's on my heart and mind again and wanted to share it in case you were not following my blog then.  It's something I need to be reminded of...maybe you do too?)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Seeing Purpose in my Failures

The year 2009 began with a bang!  I had so many hopes, dreams, plans and ideas I thought I would burst!  But then it happened.


Yuck, I hate that word.  It seems to have followed me around all year.  For instance,  I failed when I tried to get back into radio at 106.9 when my family did not respond well to the move to Asheville and everything seemed to fall apart, I failed at getting my book published when CBS told me I couldn't write about my Survivor experiences and then publishers told me I didn't have a platform without Survivor (gee, thanks), I failed at casting a vision for the future of the ministry God has given to me and I failed at the New Year's resolution I made to lose 10 pounds and instead I gained 10 pounds!

Because of my "failures" this year, I will be honest - I've had some discouragement set in.  Yes, we have had some successes and I'm so thrilled about that - people have responded to the message of Christ through our ministry and I couldn't ask for more than that!  But I know you know what I mean when I say that the failures we experience can be really difficult, in spite of many successes.  I began to ask: why am I in ministry?  What does God really want me to do?  Am I forcing it?  What direction does He want me to take?  These questions and many more have run through my over-thinking mind more times than I care to admit.  It seems like everything new that I tried this year has slammed into a brick wall and I'm left with questions.

Slowly, though, God has revealed to me that these "failures" are anything but the end of the ministry He has in store for me.  I'll give you some examples...

I had lunch with a dear friend who contacted me last week about an opportunity to serve over in Liberia in June.  I met her when I was in Asheville working at 106.9.  We attended the same church and connected immediately.  I would not be exaggerating to say that her friendship was a life-saver for me when we lived there and everything in our lives seemed to be falling apart.  When she contacted me last week, she started her message with these words "I think I know why God allowed our paths to cross...".  I began to tear up immediately as I was so encouraged to hear that there could possibly be a good purpose in that move that seemed like such a monumental failure to me.  Who knows where this whole thing will lead, but I'm greatly encouraged that God may be opening a door for me to bring the Good News of Jesus to the poor in Liberia!  My heart races with excitement as I think of what a privilege it would be to serve these sweet people!

When I was working on the book that was declined when publishers did not think I had a platform without Survivor, I was crushed and devastated.  I understand their point - a platform sells books.  Without Survivor as my platform, they were afraid nobody would know who I am and that would be too risky.  As I prayed and poured out my heart in sobs to God, I felt Him speak to my heart...Survivor as a platform is sinking sand.  Your platform must be built on the Solid Rock.  Immediate relief flooded my weary soul as I remembered an important lesson I learned while on Survivor:  Man's rejection is God's protection.  He is protecting me - He has a plan and I can trust it.  The world may think my platform doesn't exist, but God knows it does and He's building it brick by sturdy brick.  If He wants me to write a book, He will make it happen without a sinking sand platform!

My vision for the ministry God has given me has been all over the place this year.  Does He want me writing?  Speaking?  On the radio?  Does He want me to stay at home and be a full-time mom?  I just wasn't sure.  So my husband and I have been purposefully praying and seeking the Lord's will for the ministry.  I'm beginning to see that I was focusing too much on what I thought God wanted me to do and not enough on my personal relationship with Him.  That will change in 2010 as I just rest in Him and trust Him to show me the vision - one that I'm already getting small glimpses of but have not solidified yet (stay tuned!).

I'm also reminded that everyone at the foot of the cross when Jesus took His last breath thought that He had failed, too.  They assumed He was a fraud, that His whole story was bogus.  But they realized, after three days, that He was anything but a failure when He was resurrected!  What the world sees as a failure, God sees as an opportunity to begin a new thing.  And that new thing is always the better thing!

All of this to say....failure is not always what it seems to be.  Failure may feel like a death of sorts and in a weird way, it kind of is like a death.  But without death, there would never be a resurrection and new life!  Have you had some failures this year, too?  Know that God has a purpose and a plan for your life - whether it seems like it or not.  We cannot stand still and never try, though. We must walk forward and take risks for God and trust that if we are walking in the wrong direction He will turn us around, however He needs to.  This year, God has had to turn me around several times and it's been painful.  But you know, even though the year has been marked with failures, there was also some successes and I'm beginning the new year 2010 with hope - because God is not finished with me yet!

Philippians 1:6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue His work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

Oh, one more thing....As far as the 10 pounds, I'd really like to say that I'm finding purpose in that failure, but honestly, the only thing I've learned is that I now have 20 pounds to lose in 2010!  But with God's help and some self-control, I totally see that happening! :)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Please Don't Shoot the Messenger!

When you watch the news and the anchorperson tells you the news for the day, do you get upset with them if you don't like the news they are reporting?  Most of the time when I watch the news, I hate what they are saying.  A lot of what they report is not good but it's not the reporter or the anchorperson who I blame for the news - they are just reporting what they know so I can't be mad at them for telling me the truth, whether I like it or not.  You know the saying "Don't shoot the messenger"?  I guess that would apply to this situation!

Speaking of messengers, I was reading in John 13 today and the words of Jesus rang in my heart.  He said in verse 16..."I tell you the truth, slaves are not greater than their master.  Nor is the messenger more important than the one who sends the message."  He goes on in verse 20 to say "I tell you the truth, anyone who welcomes my messenger is welcoming me, and anyone who welcomes me is welcoming the Father who sent me."  Jesus is the One who sends the message - Christians are just the messengers.

Unfortunately, often times in the world, people are angry with the messengers that Jesus sends.  No one wants to hear they are a sinner.  No one wants to hear about hell.  No one wants to hear about judgment or wrath.  So, instead of listening to the messengers who speak from God's Word, they "shoot the messengers".  But does that change the message?  No, it doesn't.  The message may not be the news that people want to hear, but it's the truth according to the Bible and it's important that we all face this at some point in our lives.  And this "bad news" can be delivered in love from a person who has been there - one who remembers what it's like when the news first came to them.

The problem is, often times we get it backwards.  Have you noticed that on the newscast they report all the bad news first...and then they follow it up with some light-hearted, good news stories as they close out?  I think that is strategic.  They close out on a good note, leaving you feeling a little less violated.  I believe that is an effective way to give the message of Christ to a lost world.

You see, there is some very bad the fact that we are all sinners and fall short of God's glory (Romans 3:23) and that there is a God who will judge us all (2 Peter 3:7), there is no one who is righteous enough to get to heaven - not even the nicest person we know (Romans 3:10), our sin separates us from God (Isaiah 59:2) and that we have an enemy, the Devil (1 Peter 5:8).

But there is also some very, very GOOD news!  God sent Jesus to die for us and become the sacrifice for our sins and when we believe in Him through faith, He restores that relationship with God (Romans 3:9-31), Jesus Christ is the way to heaven (John 14:6), God will forgive us of our sins if we confess them and repent (1 John 1:9), God is patient with us and doesn't want any of us to perish (Psalm 145:8; 2 Peter 3:9; Ezekiel 18:32) and God loves us deeply (John 3:16).

I've often thought about how if someone were to come to my door and say "I found the cure for your illness!" I'd think they were crazy because I am not ill!  But if I were diagnosed with something terminal and then someone approached me with a cure, I would definitely want to hear about it.  If we don't let people know there is a diagnosis of sin and separation from God, they will not understand when we try to offer only the "good news" without the bad.  I think that's what's been going on in the world - we are so afraid to offend, so afraid to share the truth of God's word because people don't receive it well.  We want them to only hear the good news - but without knowing the bad news, the good news won't make any sense!

I had someone write to me the other day "I find it interesting that some people think that Christians wish that all be saved and led to Christ as some sort of hatred. I understand it for what it is, your true love for those you fear may not be saved in time. It is the greatest compliment that you may offer, that you think I am worthy of salvation..."  My eyes welled with tears because I saw that someone finally understood that my efforts are totally motivated by my heart for people and a desire to be obedient to the God I love, not my desire to be right or a "holy commission" of sorts! And the truth is, I'm not the only one who believes this person is worthy of salvation - God believes he is.  He believes you are worth it, too.

Now, if you don't agree with me on any of this, please don't shoot the messenger! :)  I'm only reporting what I know to be true from the pages of God's word and hopefully it is being delivered in the love it is intended to be delivered in.  He has appointed all believers to be messengers of His truth.  My heart is to tell people what He has told me to tell - and to do it with gentleness and respect for those I share it with.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Following the Rules

Not sure if you follow Survivor at all, but last night was the finale for the Survivor Samoa season.  There is a guy on the show named Russell who was in the top three and who played the game very well.  When I say he played the game well, I do not mean he played it nice - but according to the rules of Survivor, he did play the game well.  Mind you, the "rules of life" do not apply. The rules of Survivor are simple:  Don't physically attack anyone.  Don't make plans with anyone to share the money.  That's it.  Everything else is fair game, according to the rules, or should I say "lack of rules" on the show.

Well, this character (I will call him that giving him the benefit of the doubt that in real life he probably isn't this conniving and evil) Russell was just downright mean.  He dumped out the water to weaken his team, burned their socks so they would be uncomfortable, called his "alliance" names behind their backs and was very cocky about how he deserved to win because he played the game hard.  I'm not denying he played the game hard.  Probably harder than anyone else has ever played it if I were honest.  But he did it by walking on people, using people and being under-handed. But...there were no rules against that in the "game" so I suppose some would say he played well.

In the finale last night, the jury of people who he had a hand in voting out did not agree that he played the game the best, though.  They gave the million dollar prize and the title of Sole Survivor to a girl who he was not threatened by at all - and they did it because she played the game in a different way - being more respectful of others, kind, gentle and being loyal to her alliance.  I found that interesting.

The majority of Survivor fans say that Russell should have won.  He even won the "fan favorite".  He played the game harder, didn't ride coat-tails, made the tough decisions and had his head in the game the whole time.  Yet the people who he used to get to the finals were all hurt and frustrated because he didn't play by the rules - not of Survivor - but of life.  I wonder if those "fans" who voted for him as "fan favorite" would feel the same way if they had been at the receiving end of his shenanigans?

How do people know what is right and what is wrong anyway?  Where do we get this inner-compass?   If you read in the Bible, you find the rules/laws of life.  They are not there to box us in or frustrate us or to control us.  They are there to guide us into what is right and good.  They are to protect us and to help us know the way.  I think we often think God is a kill-joy with a bunch of rules - but He is actually trying to help us live life to the fullest!  Last night's show was a reminder that if we want the respect of others, we must show that respect to them, as well.  There are lines we are tempted to cross every day in order to get to what we want, but people are watching and so is God.

God's whole purpose for creating us was love - not control.  As we fall deeper in love with Him, we realize it is not a duty but an honor and a privilege to obey Him - even when the "rules" don't apply.  I have nothing whatsoever against Russell - I've been told by a few folks that he's actually a straight up nice guy in real life.  But I think he and all of us were reminded last night of a very important life principle directly from the pages of the Word of to others whatever you would like them to do to you.  (Matthew 7:12)

And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you?  He requires only that you fear the Lord your God, and live in a way that pleases Him, and love Him and serve Him with all your heart and soul.  And you must always obey the Lord's commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good.  Deuteronomy 10:12-13

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Super Markets & Coffee Shops

When I go to the super-market and run into a friend, I'm always excited to see her and we usually stop and catch up quickly, but we both have lists to shop for, dinner to cook and errands to run so the time we spend catching up leaves much to be desired, though it is nice because it keeps us up on each other's lives.  I call those the "super-market encounters".

Then there are the coffee-shop encounters I get to have with friends.  Those are the ones that can last up to three hours (sometimes more if time allows!) where we get a lot deeper in conversation, we talk about things that are on our heart and really get to know what's going on in each other's life.  I prefer these encounters, of course, but they don't happen as often as I'd like.

Relationships take work. We must be intentional if we want to deepen those relationships.  Every time I have a super-market encounter with a friend, I am reminded how much I love them and begin to wonder why I don't see them more often or why I haven't taken the time to call them and let them know I care.  It's so easy to get wrapped up in activities and neglect those relationships that are so important in our lives.

Mary and Martha had a different encounter with Christ at the exact same time and in the exact same place in Luke 10:38-42.  Martha's was a "super market encounter" while Mary's was more of a "coffee-shop encounter".  Martha was "distracted by the big dinner she was preparing" and said to Jesus "Lord, doesn't it seem unfair to you that my sister just sits here while I do all the work?  Tell her to come and help me."

Meanwhile, Mary was sitting at Jesus' feet, listening to what He was teaching.  And guess what Jesus said to Martha?  "My dear Martha (I love that He was gentle with her) you are worried and upset over all these details! There is only one thing worth being concerned about.  Mary has discovered it, and it will not be taken away from her."

Lately, I must confess, my quiet times have been more like "super-market encounters" with Jesus.  I've found myself busy, stressed and overwhelmed at times and the "to-do" list seems endless.  Can you relate?  I was reminded of this familiar story about Mary and Martha as I read the Bible today and it struck me.  There are nine words in particular that pierced my heart...."There is only one thing worth being concerned about."  Wow.  I need to remember this.

I pray that tomorrow morning, my quiet time will be more of a "coffee-shop encounter" with Jesus!  I want to sit at His feet, remembering that if I'm going to be concerned about anything, it needs to be that my time with Him is protected.  I pray the same for you!  Let's ask Him to help us to "Be still and know that He is God" (Psalm 46:10) - even during the busy times.

"A single day in Your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else!" Psalm 84:10a

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Good Morning!

"My heart has heard you say, "Come and talk with me." And my heart responds "Lord, I am coming." -Psalms 27:8 (NLT)

As I read this verse this morning, my heart just skipped a beat. It's true - every morning these are the words I hear from God in my heart - "Leslie, I'm here - come talk with me"- and those words get me out of bed more often than not these days. I find my days go much smoother and I am a lot more at peace when I begin my days looking at God's face before anyone else's. That was a quote by Charles Spurgeon that I read in The Little Red Book of Wisdom - "We should first seek to see the face of God each day before seeing the face of any man". I love that.

So, how in the world do I explain those days when I roll over and push the snooze button every 9 minutes until I realize I've missed out on my time with God? What's that about? I have so much to look forward to - reading His word, praying, giving Him my burdens, and yet I choose to sleep through it sometimes. Oh, I pay for it dearly (as does my poor family, I might add!). But inevitably, there comes a day more often than I care to admit, that I do the exact opposite of what my heart really wants to do.

I'm so glad God is gracious and loving and forgiving. And that He doesn't base His love for me on my works, but by His mercy. I would be in big trouble were it not for His unconditional love.

A wise woman once said to me, "Leslie, if you are having a hard time waking up for your quiet times with the Lord, think of Him sitting on your couch, looking at His watch, eagerly waiting for you to come out and spend some time with Him. Maybe He's petting your dog. Maybe He's eagerly tapping His foot in anticipation! Whatever He's doing, He's doing it because He just can't stand to be away from you for one more minute."

I love that. It doesn't make me feel guilty or obligated at all - it makes me feel loved and that the God of the Universe is expecting a visit from me and He has much to share with me and it can't wait! And it's true - He waits for me. And He waits for you!

I've never in my life heard anyone say "Gee, I wish I hadn't gotten up so early each day to spend time with God - what a waste of time." Nope. And I never will. I promise you, if you are having a hard time getting up early to spend time with your Father in Heaven, He will give you the grace you need to get up (even if you're not a morning person!) and not only will you get a fresh, new word from Him each day, but you will find that you are more aware of Him in every day life. He will fill your life with His presence.

Getting up early and spending time with God is like getting dressed for the day. Who would go out into battle without getting dressed in their armor first? Spending time with God first each day ensures we are ready for whatever life brings.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

From Me to You at Christmas...

Christmastime is such a wonderful time where we reflect and thank God for the gift of His Son, Jesus Christ.  I hope you will enjoy this early Christmas present from me to you - it is a poem I wrote a couple of years ago about Mary, the mother of Jesus.  Merry Christmas!  May you be filled with joy as you celebrate the birth of our Savior!

Mary had a guest on that evening so bright
An Angel whose presence gave her quite a fright.

He came to her with a message of hope and of cheer:
The Savior was coming – the time was drawing near!

The message was more personal, as she would soon see
As the Angel unfolded just what God’s plan would be.

He told her she would be mother to the Savior of all
And with that to her knees sweet, young Mary did fall

But how could this be? She was not even wed!
She questioned the Angel and that’s when he said:

“Sweet Child, God the Father has chosen you to be
A vessel that will carry Him supernaturally...
He’s sending His Spirit to give you His Seed
So you and your people will finally be freed!”

She thought for a moment and said with such strength,
“If this is God’s will, then I’ll go to any length.”

She carried our Savior through long, lonely days
Where people would give her a judgmental gaze.

They’d point and they’d stare and they’d whisper her name
While she walked down the streets without any shame.

And when the day came for her to give birth
The heavens declared His invaluable worth.

Jesus was born and the plan would unfold
That for thousands of years was prophetically foretold.

He came to live among us, to show us how to live
Then He laid down His life, so our sins He could forgive.

But it didn’t end there – no He rose from the grave!
So all men could trust Him and their lives He could save.

And save me, He did, but first I had to admit
That I couldn’t do it alone, to Him I had to submit.

Just like Mary did on that bright, clear night
When she submitted to God’s plan and did not put up a fight!

And once she submitted that God’s plan was the best,
His Spirit came upon her and gave her sweet rest.

He did the same for me -though I can’t explain how –
His Spirit came upon me and He lives in me now!

Just like sweet Mary, I carry Him around
Not in the womb, but in my heart He’ll be found.

Some people do point now, they stare and whisper my name
They think I’ve lost my mind, though I’m perfectly sane.

But all the while I know that I’m free and forgiven
So I tell others now about the life that I’m livin’

The words that the angel told Mary were true!
And He’s telling the same thing to me and to you:

“Sweet Child, God the Father has chosen you to be
A vessel that will carry Him supernaturally...
He’s sending His Spirit to give you His Seed,
So you and your people will finally be freed!” 

Leslie Nease

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Letter to a Friend

Dear Friend,

I've heard of your decision to turn away from Jesus Christ
and I understand the reason is the people you've met in life.

Apparently some Christians that you've come across before
have much to say of the wrong you do, but your needs are just ignored.

Many who claim to know Jesus don't know Him very well
(At least the way we live our lives, it's really hard to tell)

Our lives should always reflect Him but they don't and that's a shame.
We judge, we point, we criticize - all in Jesus' Name.

I think we believe it's easier to point at others when they sin
than to look into the mirror at the person who's within.

We often quote the Bible to prove to you that we're right
instead of loving and praying for you, we'd rather win a fight.

Although we read in scripture that quarreling is not effective,
instead we should show grace and love while listening to your perspective.

We often say that we know God and that He tells us what to do
but we live a life that's contrary to what we've shared with you.

God tells us in His word that for the world His life He gave
But we judge and avoid the "sinners" - the very ones He wants to save.

Sometimes I think we just forget that we are sinners, too!
Our broken lives, healed by His love - the same love He has for you.

He's the only One you can fully trust - the rest of us are frail
we're in a process - just like you - and often we do fail.

In the pages of the scriptures, though, we see a better way
We must live out what we believe if it's Truth we want to convey.

I beg of you to look to Christ - He's the only One who is perfect
He saves us, though we aren't deserving - He believes we're worth it.

My deepest apologies, dear friend, for the treatment you recieve.
I pray you'll look past our many faults and in Christ, by faith, believe.

Matthew 7:1

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged.  For you will be treated as you treat others.  The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12
Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we instructed you before.  Then people who are not Christians will respect the way you live...

Got Questions?