Y O U are the proof.

Lacking evidence that God exists? Struggling to believe The Bible? I have some news for you:

YOU are in fact that evidence.

Now you may be thinking:

“Whaaaat? How is this possible? That’s a really difficult concept that I don’t have time to think about right now…or ever.”

WELL THEN I HAVE GOOD NEWS FOR YOU: I did the thinking, wondering and questioning for you. As a result, I have decided to compile all of the evidence right here. I reduced it into a series of questions that double as answers (yes, that’s a weird paradox- but just think about the questions and you’ll see what I mean):

  1. What other creature on this earth creates NEW things?

A beaver builds dams and only dams. It does not innovate radically different designs. Each innately strives for the same simple goal without much variation. Since when did humans ever strive for ordinary? We are constantly finding ways to make things better and easier. We want NEW and extraordinary. If you think about it, animals like beavers really have not changed much in terms of their own creations. And while some things that animals create could be perceived as art to us (see http://www.care2.com/causes/5-animals-who-make-art.html for art created by animals as a result of mainly captivity), the idea that animals enjoy aesthetic art like humans do has little evidence to support it.  But we were CREATED TO CREATE…because we were created in His image.

//So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.// Genesis 1:27

  1. What other creature on this earth strives to cover itself up?

Have you even seen an animal get embarrassed by exposing something? If you have, please let me know because that would be rather shocking. My opinion on this is that humans have the shame of sin to cover and animals don’t…because God didn’t create them that way. He created them without free will. They exist, but no so much for a purpose other than a beautiful showing of God’s power through the beauty and complexity of nature. As a result of free will given to us by God, we have the gift of choice. We CHOSE to disobey God in order to know good and evil. Animals never had that kind of power. This is because only humans were created in God’s image to make such choices. We were also given dominion over other creatures by God to take care of His other creations:

//God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”// -Genesis 1:28

  1. What other creature desires a spiritual connection more than a physical connection?

Now I know that I can’t speak to animals. That isn’t my field of expertise. But I did do some research. Based on my findings, there is no evidence that animals are or have ever been religious. And if you think about it, when was the last time you heard of animals putting on ritualistic ceremonies to connect with something higher than themselves? Their communication, based on what we know about their interactions, is focused on the physical: survival of self or survival of the group. In contrast, humans all throughout history have shown a significant interest in establishing a connection with some type of higher power. Animals don’t seem to build temples. They build homes for themselves, not something unseen.

  1. What other creature adjusts itself to a new climate without the impact of an external force?

Animals don’t willingly leave their familiar climate simply to “see the world” or “push themselves out of their comfort zone”. We typically move as a result of internal motives, not external ones. For example, if we have a dream to drop everything and move to Hawaii, we could do that likely NOT because our survival was being threatened in Georgian suburbia (well this is debatable if we are talking survival of sanity on occasion lol), but because we simply WANT to for personal reasons. And despite animated movie portrayals, few animals decide to leave the pack out of “teenage rebellion.”

Looking at all of these answers, the biggest difference here seems that other creatures live to survive. Humans live to THRIVE. We look at our surroundings and see greater potential for it. Every human culture in history developed innovations based on the resources available to them. We don’t just want to “get by” in our environment. Throughout every generation, it is clear that humans wanted MORE than just existence.  While animals typically seek power and survival, humans want power and purpose.

All this goes to say that:

Y O U are different.

Y O U are special.

Y O U were created on purpose, FOR a purpose…because:

Y O U were created by THE Creator.

Y O U were also created in the IMAGE of The Creator…meaning that:

Y O U were created to create….beautiful things…beautiful stories….made to display His glories.

Y O U are no accident.

Y O U are important.

Y O U are His design….not the world’s to decide.

Y O U are the evidence of His fingerprints.

Y O U are the proof.

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REAL LOVE REVOLUTION 2K17

 

Want to know a secret?

I am tired of love.

Ouch! That sounds like such a cold thing to say doesn’t it?

The truth is that I am not tired of love itself, but society’s diverse and puzzling interpretations of it. Think about this simple question and try to give me an answer:

WHAT IS LOVE?

No seriously- what is it? We say we “love” a lot of things: that guy, that girl, that slice of pizza, that TV show, that friend, that family member, that class, that picture, that dog…and the list goes on.

Whether it’s addressing a person or a pizza, we hear the term used almost incessantly every day. This blatant overuse of the word has ultimately muddled its true meaning in society. We have gotten to a point where the definition is just extremely ambiguous and unclear. More than anything else, it has really come to be defined as more of a generalized feeling. So to figure out the root of what love really is beyond this simple “feeling” idea, I asked God. Although I shouldn’t be, I was shocked that He answered so directly. Just a couple days later, I randomly flipped to these words spoken by Jesus in my Bible:

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.

-John 15:12-17 (emphasis added)

Jesus makes love’s definition super clear in this text. If reading it was too much, here’s an easy summary of what Jesus says about love:

HOW TO REMAIN IN GOD’S LOVE? Keep His commands.

(note: the word “remain” here does not mean that you must love others perfectly at all times in order for God to love you. It is referring to a life that is most saturated in God’s love when loving others like He does.)

HOW TO KEEP HIS COMMANDS? Love one another.

HOW TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER? Lay down your life for your friends.

So this is love defined by God- whose definition is the ONLY one that matters. It isn’t just a feeling you have about someone. It is an ACTION. And if you really think about it, love without action is useless. If you say you “love” someone but are not willing to DO anything for them as a result of that love, what’s the point? When feelings just stay and float around in your head, your supposed “loved” is largely stagnant. This statement is an easy way to remember this:

Love isn’t love unless it MOVES…

{Moves The Holy Spirit. Moves PEOPLE. & Moves YOU….to real ACTION.}

You know that common phrase, “it’s the thought that counts”? I think it’s a lie we are all blindly living in. It’s NOT the thought that counts! It’s the ACTION as a result of the thought that truly MEANS anything to us.

It’s one thing to say over social media, a text, or even verbally that you love someone. However, showing up to an event to celebrate them when you really didn’t have to come is different. So is driving a long distance simply to hold them in your arms and tell them face to face: “everything is going to be okay.” So is buying them ice cream after a long day. So is laughing at their jokes till both of your stomachs hurt. So is setting aside whatever you had planned for yourself in order to put their needs first.

This is selfless action.

This is laying down one’s life for one’s friends.

This is what Jesus called us to do.

This is REAL LOVE.

& It’s beautiful….no greater life exists.

[to be clear: this is NOT a like on a picture, a retweet, a friend request, a snapchat, or a celebratory Instagram post]

P.S:

//So let’s change love’s definition in 2017. Make it a VERB, not a feeling. What would happen to marriages if love was seen as an action eliciting commitment again? “Love” based purely on physical attraction fades, but love through action does not. & to close, I’ll leave you with a quote from Bob Goff: “LOVE DOES.”//

ever-L O V E D.

Sometimes we feel…

WorthLESS. But in Christ, given V AL U E. {Matthew 6:25-34}

HopeLESS. But in Christ, given irrepressible H O P E. {Romans 5:5}

LESS. But in Christ, given far M O R E. {Ephesians 3:20-21}

BROKEN. But in Christ, given broken C H A I N S. {Romans 6:22}

LOST. But in Christ, eternally F O U N D. {John 8:36}

SELFseeking. But in Christ, O T H E R S seeking. {Matthew 4:19}

SHAMEful. But in Christ, given a N E W name. {2 Corinthians 5:17}

& the earthly hearts we encounter can seem….

EVER-changing. But Christ is ever-F A I T H F U L. {2 Thessalonians 3:3}

EVER-false. But Christ is ever-T R U E. {John 15:1}

EVER-disappointing. But Christ is ever-P R E S E N T. {Psalm 46:1}

& our own hearts have the tendency to feel…

EVER-unsure. But in Christ,  you can be ever-S E C U R E. {Psalm 16:5}

EVER-scared. But in Christ, you can be ever-B R A V E. {Matthew 14:27}

EVER-depressed. But in Christ, you can be ever-J O Y F U L. {Psalm 100}

EVER-lonely. But when walking with Christ, you are ever-T O G E T H E R. {Hebrews 13:5}

EVER-abandoned…..EVER-ignored….EVER-hurting….EVER-comparing….EVER-envying…EVER-troubled…EVER-alienated…EVER-unlovable….EVER-unloved….

BUT  IN  C H R I S T,  Y O U  A R E

e v e r- L O V E D.

{Romans 5:8, Romans 8:39, John 13:1,  John 14:1-4, John 14:23, 1 John 4:16, John 3:16}