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Sarah Martin Christian Blog and Commentary

Sarah Martin

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Sarah Francis Martin is a wife, mother, friend, mentor, author and wanna be artist. Shehas a passion to encourage women to make Jesus famous in every part of life. She is the author of Just RISE UP!: A Call To Make Jesus Famous (Thomas Nelson 2012). Sarah's relevant and conversational style will invigorate readers to live rise up off the couch of complacency live with faith-filled purpose for the renown of Jesus . When Sarah is not typing away at her laptop you can usually find her getting her hands messy with craft paint. Check out more at www.liveitoutblog.com.

Where Credit Is due

Today let's keep the feast simple. No, it won't lose it's impact yet it will reinvigorate our perspective. In a moment, after you read this I'm going to ask you to shut the lid to your laptop or slid the off screen or do whatever you have to do to disconnect for just a bit from your technology of choice. Not yet, though. We have some pressing in to do before we pour out...literally out.

Press In

In the following Scripture, do you see some key words? All (all creation!), saints (holy people), bless (bless Him!), thanks (a form of blessing!).

All Your works shall praise You, O Lord, And Your saints shall bless You. (Psalm 145:10 ESV)

All creation will stand in awe of You,O Eternal One. Thanks will pour from the mouths of every one of Your creatures; Your holy people will bless You. (Psalm 145:10 THE VOICE)

This verse reminds me of when Jesus makes an amazing point. It is the great Triumphal Entry before Easter where the crowd declares, "Hosanna! Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” But then a Pharisee, one who attempts to squelch the joy of the occasion encourages Jesus to stop them. Can you imagine? Jesus responds...

I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out. (Luke 19:40)

I've always read this verse and thought: Oh No! Let us not leave it up to the rocks!

All of creation speaks of the goodness of God. Our God is creative and impressive and infinitely wise. He made this earth with us in mind to enjoy and revel in and He is still involved in this creation. Though, some see God as the One holding the snow globe type earth and admiring His creation from afar. Let's praise God, bless Him for holding us in His mighty hand with intricate involvement. Oh we see His handiwork everywhere if we choose to look, really take notice.

He is so very due praise and honor and blessing that if we, as the crown of creation, neglect our duty (pleasure filled duty), creation itself will fill in the gap.

Oh let us give credit where credit is due!

Pour Out and Pour Forth

Will you go out with an open heart to investigate God's glory all around you? We don't have to live in the middle of a beautiful farm or stand in a bountiful garden to see it. There is glory to be found in cities, at school, on the commuter train...in interacting with His people. Living to intentional engage with God's creation regardless of the location is worship in and of itself.

Breath it in

Breath it out

Engage

Give God the credit due His name.

Leave it NOT up to the rocks!

 

 

If I mentioned 3 words, would you know personally what I mean? Would these words conjure up for you the same type of emotions that swirl around in my heart, too? The Cool Club. Three words that embody what I was never a part of. Even writing this puts me back to the halls of junior high and awkwardness ever abundant. It puts me back to that broken heart from being excluded. Not fun.

As an adult I see the cool club all around me. And it makes me so mad. I even see it in the church. I see it as an "us verses the world" mentality as we swoop away in our comfort zones and with our perfect facades knowing that we are "ok" because we are "saved" and "going to heaven."

Oh it is so much more than that!

Press In and Praise Him...

But the Eternal’s goodness is not exclusive—it is offered freely to all. His mercy extends to all His creation. (Psalm 145:9 THE VOICE)

The Lord is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made. (Psalm 145:9)

The veil.

The veil that contained God's upmost holiness in His temple tore in two when Jesus breathed His last breath on the cross. (Matthew 27:50-54)

God's absolute, manifest glory from that moment forward stood available to any and all who would come to Him. Free to all, yes, as God's word says. Available to His entire creation.

Not one excluded.

But it is more than saying the sinners prayer and declaring with an "us verses the world" heart that we are now "saved." Oh yes. We are saved from eternal separation from the Almighty. Yes. But the more comes in to play when we take our place and take part in God's kingdom. It is here and now.

There are people to serve.

There is love to first pour out to God and then to our neighbor...even when it hurts and when it is uncomfortable.

There are those who feel excluded, not worthy, unacceptable.

Is your heart burdened for those who live excluded...not knowing His inclusive mercy and love?

This is my prayer these days. For my heart to soften and for my self righteous pride to dissolve. 

Will we allow God to use us, yes US, to partake in His work. Will we worship by exclaiming to God's creation that He freely extends mercy. They are not excluded. Will we go the distance and walk alongside and lead them to the cross to be included? Jesus did the work. We have the privilege of witnessing the miracle, the transformation. Our faith and worship will grow stronger in the process!

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Psalm 145 was the original inspiration for Just RISE UP!: A Call To Make Jesus Famous. Want to be a part of the generation who rises up for His renown? Check out the book HERE.

Above all else Day 8

***This blog originally posted on LIVE IT OUT! blog.

Above All Else Day 8: He Loves Us Regardless

Today, on this Monday might we tackle a big topic? Let's start the week out right.

Go ahead and soak in today's Above All Else Scripture and then we will dig in.

The Eternal is gracious. He shows mercy to His peopleFor Him anger does not come easily, but faithful love does—and it is rich and abundant. (Psalm 145:8 THE VOICE)

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. (Psalm 145:8)

I firmly believe that if we are to truly worship Him today (based on the words of our Psalm 145) and feast with a heart of gratitude for God's mercy and grace-filled, steadfast love, we simply must come at it in a state of repentance. For if we truly grasp His holiness, His righteousness, we also grasp that outside of the cross, we simply are not.

Oh but for Jesus we are but filthy rags not worthy to sit in, to press into His presence.

Sounds harsh? Sure does. 

Oh but for Jesus! The slate is wiped clean and our King welcomes us in sparkling white and pure. 

Just like a Monday is a new week, a new start.

Is this new news to you? It is not for me, honestly. Every since I was a young sixteen year old kneeling beside my bed and asking for forgiveness of my teen-age type sins, I knew this truth. But knowing this truth meant checking off a box and striving to be a good girl. It was only when I got a handle on two important aspects of WHO God is that my worship changed in a drastic way:

~God is holy. Upmost righteous. Pure. Worthy of only purity in His presence. Therefore, He is fully justified in all of His actions of judgement.

~God abounds in love, merciful, gracious love. So much so, He made a way through the cross for us because of this outright love. 

God is big enough to be just and wrathful, demanding holiness AND overflowing in love for us. 

Do you believe that today?

Several years ago I began a journey to wrap my brain around the dumbfounding but fact filled truth. Because God is BOTH Just (holy and pure) AND abounding in love, I looked at my actions differently. For me, this was a turn key moment toward living my life as worship and thus living to please Him because He is worthy. This is more than the "check the box" mentality. This is more striving to be the good girl so that God would love me because I pleased Him. No, Psalm 145 tells us that God loves us regardless. 

What if we decide to do life differently, evaluating our actions bent toward sin because we desire to please Him because we love Him back?

What if we actually acknowledged our sin in confession and then DID SOMETHING to change that behavior? (Repentance. A churchy type word but oh so necessary!)

Let this be our feast today. Thanking Him that He loves us regardless. Thank Him for giving us daily glimpses into His pure holiness when we sit at the table and make much of Jesus. 

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Just Rise online study--pink

 

I'm really excited to dive into this topic with you further! Will you join me in my 5-week online study of Just RISE UP!? All you need is your Bible, a journal, and a copy of Just RISE UP! More info HERE.

Above all else day 6&7

 

 

The weekend is here. That means we've journeyed together for seven days in our feast on the fame of Jesus. Were you encouraged? Were you overwhelmed? Was this too much?

I've noticed for myself a bit of a detox happening in my heart and mind. This feast has forced me to live consumed by more and more and more of Him and less of myself. Thus the detox! I'm depleting this self-focus everyday and the pain comes in where I realize how much muck is still left in my heart. This process is good for the soul, I know it. For every declaration, every exclamation directed at Jesus, there is less and less room for my pride.

This weekend will you join me in some bold prayer confessions and declarations? Don't be deterred by the word confession. Oh the chance to pour out our muck and mire and fill up on His abundance when we confess and declare! We take part in the greater picture of the Kingdom as we press in, pour out and pour forth our declarations...

***The following is just a tid bit from Chapter 1 of Just RISE UP!: A Call To Make Jesus Famous

Take a look at what Philippians has to say about the day when every- one in heaven and on earth will bow down and use their tongues to proclaim the name of God.

So God raised Him up to the highest place and gave Him the name above all. So when His name is called, every knee will bow, in heaven, on earth, and below. And every tongue will confess “Jesus, the Anointed One, is Lord,” to the glory of God our Father! (Phil. 2:9–11 THE VOICE)

This verse tells us that every tongue will confess Jesus’ name as Lord, not just those who are professed Christians. On that day, the entire creation will cry out and praise His name, with bended knee, in humility and reverence. But why should we, women who desire to RISE UP! and make Jesus famous in our lives right here and right now, wait until that fateful day? What is keeping each of us from living a life full of praise daily? What is stopping us from saying, “Jesus! You are my King and the one true God. I give you glory and honor today?”

To move forward this weekend with our Above All Else journey, take some time with Psalm 145 and specifically verses 6 & 7. I invite you to sit quietly through the prayer prompts below.

We confess—there is nothing greater than You, God, nothing mightier than Your awesome works.
I will tell of Your greatness as long as I have breath.
The news of Your rich goodness is no secret
Your people love to recall it
and sing songs of joy to celebrate Your righteousness. (Ps. 145: 6-7 THE VOICE)

~Lord Jesus, today I confess––I speak of your awesome works... (tell Him you are grateful in specific ways)

~As long as I have breath, Lord, I will proclaim Your name with my life... 

~Give me the courage set aside my "self" and my pride in order to make room for more and more and more of You...

Amen!!

***Read more from Sarah at LIVE IT OUT!

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Example: "Gen 1:1" "John 3" "Moses" "trust"
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