Posts By Chad Stuart

Scripture Memorization 15 of 52: Psalm 139:13, 14

“For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.” -Psalm 139:13, 14

This is the rejoicing of my heart today. At various stages in my life I have not taken very good care of the wonderful contraption known as my body…one of those stages were the two years after we moved to Maryland. In those two years I gained 22 pounds which led to many issues the least of which disturbance in my wife’s sleep with all my snoring ūüôā I lost some weight for my neck surgery in January (surgery not related to the snoring ;)), but almost immediately put it back on. Then in March I received word that my name had been drawn, after I randomly entered the New York City Marathon. That was a ‘bit of the kick in the pants I needed to get going!

Well today I’m 16 lbs lighter than I was at my highest point. Today I also had the privilege of checking off one of the items that was high on my list to things to do when I moved to Maryland, I ran D.C.. Eight miles around all the Capitol, The White House, all the monuments and back up to the Supreme Court and over to Union Station.

I am glad that I have a body that though it moves a lot slower than it did a few years ago and has more aches after all I’ve put it through, at the end of the day it can still get out there and pound the pavement…truly wonderful are God’s works, my soul indeed knows this very well!

“For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.” -Psalm 139:13, 14

WATCH THIS! PLEASE!

This sermon is by one of my dear friends and one of the best preachers. Find an hour and watch this message…I have not been moved, convicted, rebuked, encouraged more by a message in years!

Scripture Memorization 14 of 52 John 3:17

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
-John 3:17

I don’t see them as often as I once did, but growing-up watching a lot of sports I saw a lot of signs like this:

I don’t know how many people that saw these signs actually knew what they meant…but I went to church and church school so I did know it was a reference to the Bible and I even had that Bible reference memorized.

‚ÄúFor God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” -John 3:16

Such a wonderful text. I wish more people though would have memorized the text immediately following it and believed it as well. John 3:16 tells us that if we believe (more than just a knowledge), trust in Jesus we won’t perish we’ll have eternal life. But many in this world have chosen not to believe, trust in Jesus/God, because the God they were raised to believe in is a God that is looking to condemn, a God that sets up arbitrary rules and if you don’t follow those rules and live exactly “so” you will be condemned. And therefore people don’t believe. That is the story shared with me by a former Catholic now agnostic on my recent plane ride and I have unfortunately heard this same sentiment from many others throughout my life, and yes I have even felt the same sentiment in my own heart in the course of my journey. If only people would have shared the text immediately following.

The god they were taught about isn’t a true god, the god many were taught to fear and shirk from if they messed-up is a god with a little “g” he isn’t real. How do I know, because the real God didn’t send Jesus into this world as the perfect example so that we would feel bad about our blemishes, the real God is a God that isn’t looking to condemn. God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world…

The message of Jesus and thus of God was never one of condemnation, it was always one of hope and a way out to a better place.

Do you struggle with condemnation in your life? Memorize John 3:17 and rebuke the devil because it is he, the fake god that condemns, not the ONE TRUE GOD.

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”
-John 3:17

Scripture Memorization 13 of 52: Psalm 107:8

¬†‚ÄúOh that men would praise the LORD for¬†his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the¬†children of men!‚ÄĚ- Psalm 107:8, KJV

Take a moment right now to write down this verse on a piece of paper or a notecard, maybe type it into the notes of your phone, and then under it begin to list the attributes of goodness you see in The Lord and more specifically write down a list of His wonderful works in your life. I find most our prayers are 90-100% ask and often very little if any praise. Today and this week and every week let us praise His goodness and His wonderful works.

Here are few of the things I am praising The Lord for today:

  • Christina, my companion in life,¬†who is one of the hardest workers I know.
  • Christina¬†and the amazing decor she did for HIS Team and in our sanctuary this past Sabbath.
  • Three healthy boys that teach me daily about Jesus’ love for me.
  • Dayton and his commitment to the Bible
  • Landon and his great sense of humor
  • Levi’s helper attitude
  • A successful surgery that has helped me to have a better back than I’ve had in years!
  • The ability and joy of running again
  • The doors that have been opened that have enabled us to purchase a house
  • A great staff to serve with at Spencerville Church
  • My list could go on and on…but those are just a few praises that are owed all to Jesus this week.

¬†‚ÄúOh that men would praise the LORD for¬†his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the¬†children of men!‚ÄĚ- Psalm 107:8, KJV

 

 

Scripture Memorization 12 of 52: Isaiah 48:18

“Oh that you had paid attention to my commandments!
    Then your peace would have been like a river,
¬†¬†¬†¬†and your righteousness like the waves of the sea;” -Isaiah 48:18

This text is one I need to seal in my heart today, and everyday…especially on the days there are struggles it is good to remember that some of those struggles are due to my own poor decisions. Please hear me, not all our struggles are due to our individual poor decisions, indeed some of my struggles are just the corporate poor decisions of all of us. But too often I can place my struggles at another’s feet when in truth I need to examine my own life decisions, my own heart and ask, “am I following the principles God laid out not to control me but to bless me?”

That is one idea from¬†this text….maybe that is the oppressive portion of the text for some…maybe you are already beating yourself up you don’t need that reminder.

The other idea I get from this text then is this…

All that God has established, that many call oppressive rules, are in fact foundations of blessing!

And the language of the blessings is abundant! Like a river, not a stream, not a creek, not a spring, a river.

Not a still lake, not a calm pond, but waves like the sea.

The commandments are wonderful! They are full of abundance for all of us. Walk in them not to earn salvation but because Jesus loves you so much He wants you to have everything, He wants us to have everything we don’t deserve! But by grace we receive through our Savior.

“Oh that you had paid attention to my commandments!
    Then your peace would have been like a river,
¬†¬†¬†¬†and your righteousness like the waves of the sea;” -Isaiah 48:18

Scripture Memorization 11 of 52: Isaiah 26:3

¬†‚ÄúYou keep him in perfect peace whose¬†mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.‚ÄĚ ‚ÄďIsaiah 26:3, ESV

To understand Isaiah 26:3 we have to read Isaiah 25:1-Isaiah 26:6 and in those verses what you will discover is that the¬†people are celebrating that God is in charge. He is the ruler. He has overcome enemies and established His authority, He has established His “bulwarks.”

In that day this song will be sung in the land of Judah: “We have a strong city; he sets up salvation as walls and bulwarks. -Isaiah 26:1

In context we can see the perfect peace spoken of in Isaiah 26:3 is established first upon the actions of God that place Him in complete control and authority. But then it also involves an act of the individual, a mind stayed on God because that individual trusts in the authority of God.

Peace then comes through by the work of God establishing His authority and us trusting in, I’d say even submitting to that authority and rulership.

In our modern world this would mean that true peace is not about Jesus establishing earthly powers, but rather about allowing Jesus to establish His “bulwarks” in our hearts and minds. That we trust His authority.

As Charles Spurgeon wrote,

“To be sure that what you are doing is what Jesus would have yon do is peace.”

For those searching for peace through any other means than Jesus, peace will not be found.

It will not be found in the $500 million spent on self-help seminars each year nor in $776 million spent on self-help books. Peace will not be found in the $90 billion spent on alcohol by Americans each year or in the escapism of the pornography industry (450 million viewers monthly in the world).

Peace is also not found in the good things, a spouse, children, a job, or even exercise.

True peace is found in doing life according to the will of Jesus. 

Let us all spend more time in the Word on our knees living in peace.

Plant it in your mind, let it impact your heart, apply it to your life:

‚ÄúYou keep him in perfect peace whose¬†mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.‚ÄĚ ‚ÄďIsaiah 26:3, ESV

Fears & Motivations

I embark upon this preparation for the New York City Marathon with a number of fears and motivations.

Start with my fears to get the negative out of the way:

I Can’t Believe I’m Going To Do This Again

“Am I really going to do this?” was the question that swished through my mind as I read an email last week informing me I’d won the lottery. Not the lottery that gives you money, but the lottery to run the 2017 New York City Marathon.

I’ll back-up, in November of 2016 I caught a ride up to New York City slept in a church office…

I’m LEAVING!

So I am finally going to pull the plug on my Facebook account. I have taken several hiatus’ from Facebook in the past always with the intent of rejoining in two weeks, 30 days, 40 days, whatever the case may be. This leave though is not with the intent of coming back.

It will be hard and I’m not going to give the reasons so many give, miss seeing my friends, easy form of communication, etc.. All those may be true, but the real reason it will be difficult for me¬†is EGO! ¬†Facebook is an ego rush. If you don’t agree then why do we¬†

Scripture Memorization 10 of 52: Colossians 3:16

“Let¬†the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom,¬†singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,¬†with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” -Colossians 3:16

I love this verse because it lays out for us two ways in which the Word of God can be firmly rooted in our hearts.

The first is through teaching and admonishment. The word admonishment in our culture carries a negative connotation. The actual meaning of the word though includes