This afternoon I went to the beach to rest in the Lord, pray and meditate on His word. The weather was beautiful, the sun was warm, a couple of dolphins swam by—and even a seal. While I was enjoying God’s creation I decided to focus on Psalm 103:14b: “For he knows our frame, he remembers that we are dust.” The theme seemed fitting considering I was surrounded by sand. This verse encouraged me a lot because it is full of powerful truths.
First, it reminds me that we serve a God who knows with all knowledge our condition. He knows that we are fragile inside and out, but he provides us with his strength and mercies every single day. (Lamentations 3:22-23)
It reminds me that all of us are inheritors of original sin from Adam (who God formed from the dust of the earth), but Christ has conquered sin and there is nothing that can separate us from the love of Christ. (Romans 8:35)
Last, the verse from Psalms reminds me that we are going to die and return to the earth. But, one day “the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.” (1 Corinthians 15:52) We are going to receive a new body.
We are dust, but thank God for his abundance, he who provides for all of our needs.
Esta tarde fui a la playa para descansar en el Señor, orar y meditar en su palabra. Mientras estaba disfrutando del clima, el agua, el sol y la vista de delfines y un sello, decidí estudiar salmo 103:14b: “se acuerda de que somos polvo.” Este versículo me anima mucho porque está lleno de verdades poderosas.
Me recuerda que servimos a un Dios que sabe con todo conocimiento nuestra condición. Sabe que somos frágiles por dentro como por fuera, pero nos aprovisiona con su fuerza y su misericordia cada día. (Lamentaciones 3:22-23)
Me recuerda que somos herederos del pecado original de Adán (quien Dios formó del polvo de la tierra), pero Cristo ha vencido el pecado y no hay nada que nos separará del amor de Cristo. (Romanos 8:35)
Me recuerda que aunque vamos a morir y regresar a la tierra, un día “los muertos serán resucitados incorruptibles, y nosotros seremos transformados.” (1 Corintios 15:52) Vamos a recibir un cuerpo nuevo.
Somos polvo, pero gracias a Dios por su abundancia, el que provee a todas nuestras necesidades.
The striped design of the Bolivian flag consists of three colors: red, yellow and green. Each has its own specific meaning. According to the Bolivian government:
The red stripe represents the blood of the heroes shed for the birth of the nation and the preservation of the republic.
The yellow stripe represents the richness of the land and the natural resources.
The green stripe represents the richness of Bolivia’s nature (environment) and hope, which is a principal value of the Bolivian society.
I will explain the intricate center of the flag in a future blog.
El diseño de la bandera boliviana consiste en tres colores: la franja superior de rojo, la frana central de amarillo y la franja inferior de verde. Según el Decreto del 19 de julio de 2004:
La franja de color rojo, representa la sangre derramada por nuestros héroes para el nacimiento y preservación de la República.
La de color amarillo, representa nuestras riquezas y recursos naturales.
La de color verde, representa la riqueza de nuestra naturaleza y la esperanza, como un valor principal de nuestra sociedad.
Hay muchos elementos individualizados que componen el escudo nacional y los explicaré en otro blog.
One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Philippians 4:4: “Rejoice in the Lord always: again I will say, Rejoice.” When you consider that Paul wrote these words to the church of Philippi while he was imprisoned, it’s amazing to think that he was full of such joy. But why was he full of such great joy? I wanted to find the reasons, beyond the simple answer of his relationship with Christ, and I found at least 24 in this one letter alone. Consider the following reasons that to be a Christian is to have, just like Paul, access to tremendous joy here on earth.
Paul was full of great joy because:
- The church of Philippi partnered with him in the gospel (1:5).
- God brings all good works in His people to completion (1:6).
- His imprisonment meant that non-believers (the imperial guard) were hearing the gospel (1:13).
- Brothers in Christ were emboldened by Paul’s imprisonment to share the gospel without fear (1:14).
- Whether out of rivalry or love, the gospel was being proclaimed by others (1:18).
- Paul knows that through the prayers of the church of Phillipi and the help of Jesus, he will be delivered (1:19).
- He knows that to live is to labor for Christ, and to die is to be with Christ (1:21).
- He gets to increase the church of Philippi’s joy in Christ. (1:25).
- He derives joy from the unity in love of the church of Philippi (2:2).
- God works in His people to will and to work for His good pleasure (2:13).
- The Philippians’ faith is a sacrificial offering (2:17).
- God spared his friend Epaphroditus who was near death (2:27).
- He gets to increase the Philippians’ joy by sending Epaphroditus to them (2:28).
- He has the “surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus” (3:7).
- His righteousness is a gift from God; not a work of the law (3:9).
- He will attain the resurrection from the dead (3:11).
- God will transform his lowly body to be like His glorious body (3:21).
- The brothers and sisters of Philippi are his joy and crown (4:1).
- His fellow laborers in Christ are in the book of life (4:3).
- The peace of God guards believers’ hearts and minds in Christ (4:7).
- The Philippians’ concern for his well-being was revived (4:10).
- He has learned in whatever situation he is in to be content (4:11).
- He can do all things through Christ who gives him strength (4:13).
- God supplies all needs according to His riches in glory in Christ (4:19).
Does having great joy in Christ mean that we will always be comfortable and happy here on earth? Absolutely not. There will be times of great sorrow upon sorrow, but through it all we have communion with Jesus Christ who holds Infinite Joy in His hands and “who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2).
* Gracias a mi amiga Zusset que creó el dibujo.
Estoy tan agradecido que puedo alabar a Dios con la congregación de Nueva Vida cada domingo. Es un gran placer estar con hermanos y hermanas de Cristo que siguen a Dios con fidelidad y gozo. También estoy agradecido que este cuerpo de creyentes ha decidido apoyarme con oraciones y ofrendas asi que pueda servir a Dios en Bolivia. Me siento humilde por su confianza.
“¡Mirad cuán bueno y cuán delicioso es habitar los hermanos juntos en armonía!” (Salmo 133:1)
Every single year I re-read this one Christian article about New Year’s resolutions by Paul Tripp. Whether you are into making resolutions or not, I think you will find valuable nuggets of wisdom in this piece. Consider this section where he argues that most of life’s important changes takes place in the little, mundane decisions we make every day, rather than big resolutions that occur once per year:
You see, the character of a life is not set in two or three dramatic moments, but in 10,000 little moments. The character that was formed in those little moments is what shapes how you respond to the big moments of life.
What leads to significant personal change?
- 10,000 moments of personal insight and conviction
- 10,000 moments of humble submission
- 10,000 moments of foolishness exposed and wisdom gained
- 10,000 moments of sin confessed and sin forsaken
- 10,000 moments of courageous faith
- 10,000 choice points of obedience
- 10,000 times of forsaking the kingdom of self and running toward the kingdom of God
- 10,000 moments where we abandon worship of the creation and give ourselves to worship of the Creator
And what makes all of this possible? Relentless, transforming, little-moment grace. You see, Jesus is Emmanuel not just because he came to earth, but because he makes you the place where he dwells. This means he is present and active in all the mundane moments of your daily life.
You can read the entire article at PaulTripp.com.