“Finding Normal-an Uninvited Change, an Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“So many of us are focused on finding ourselves during college that we fail to realize how important God can be in our lives.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

》Click on these links, for it’s all about focus. You can choose between the pleasures of this world, or focus in on Jesus Christ, which He will not steer you wrong if you focus on Him.

“Focus”-C WEST

“Don’t Waste Your Life”-Lecrae

“I Got Jesus”-NF

An Exposé on Ecclesiastes

The words of the Teacher, son of David, king in Jerusalem: “Meaningless! MEANINGLESS!” says the Teacher. “Utterly MEANINGLESS! Everything is meaningless.” (Ecclesiastes 1:1-2; NIV)

What a way to start off one of the sixty-six books that comprise the Holy Bible. It is peculiar, indeed, to start off a book with that sort of phraseology, a book that seemingly has no part of the Holy Bible. In fact, one famous conservative Christian author was so brazen to put it in his book that covered Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon. However, it is there.

For, it is useful at times, but the majority of its message is doom and gloom to the Christian who does not look for deeper meanings in God’s Word. One of the books you just skip over, or bringing it up at times of convenience like the often quoted, “A Time for Everything” found in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8. Throughout the years, especially while I was growing up, this book (12 short chapters) never held much interest to me. However, that changed once I was introduced to this book:

In the introduction (page 1) Tommy Nelson says,

The Book of Ecclesiastes is amazing.

“Really?”I said in my mind. For I was truly perplexed.

It answers some of the most troubling questions we face as men and women.

  • Where is God when bad things happen?
  • How can I keep from being bitter toward God?
  • How do I deal with the uncertainty of life?
  • What do I do when I’m not sure of God’s will?
  • When bad things happen, is it because I don’t have enough faith?
  • Are Christians supposed to have fun?

If you’re like me, these questions make you lie awake at night. As a pastor, most of the heartfelt questions I get asked have to do with what is called the problem of evil… (Nelson, Tommy. “The Problem of Life with God.” 2002.)

Curious, I wanted to make sure my life after the accident (The Birth of True Life Christianity under MENU) was not a bad twist of fate.

See, I had just turned eighteen. Freshly graduated from high school, and the world ahead of me all for God. I was even enrolled in a Christian college. Yet, over-working myself (over 80 hours in a week to save for college and pay for used sports car), I personally decided that this was how I was going to spend my ’89 summer. Rather, I was too busy in what I thought was God’s will for my life (being a Youth Pastor) to give it a thought to how tired my body must have been. Therefore, I didn’t allow Him to show me that He might have had a different calling on my life until years after the car accident. So, you can see why this book heighten my curiosity.

On page 96, it says,

So how does God bring this change about? How does He create holiness, character, and joy in us? Through pain and suffering.

Confused at which way God wanted me to head in my life after the accident, I was still headed down the path of being a Youth Pastor because that is all I was prepared to do. If I was going into a different ministry, why hadn’t God prepared me? Was the car accident so necessary even if He was sending me into as different ministry? These were my thoughts for 10 years (even after it was clear that I did not have what it takes), as I did not want to let the youth leadership go.

I was still hoping for a miracle that I would be restored to my pre-accident body. Meanwhile, my church was believing in a miracle that I would return to my pre-accident body. My family, schoolmates, and friends were all believing it to. Yet, I waited and waited. The healing the way we expected it to happen, never came. Then, I stumbled upon this book that further explains what Ecclesiastes means.

This book helped me understand I needed to go to the source, the Book of Ecclesiastes. In Ecclesiastes, King Solomon states the meaninglessness of human beings’ wisdom, of pleasure, of wisdom and folly, and of toil (1:12-2:26 NIV). Then, he writes what would be his most famous chapter among Christians, “A Time for Everything” (3, NIV).

In “A Time for Everything,” Solomon conveys that no matter how long it takes everything returns to dust. Meaningless! How MEANINGLESS! This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind” (Ecclesiastes, NIV).

HOWEVER, King Solomon waits to the twelfth chapter to give us all hope for staying on this earth:

Remember your creator, … when people are afraid of heights and dangers in the streets … Remember Him-before the silver cord is severed, and the golden bowl is broken; and the dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to the God who gave it. MEANINGLESS! MEANINGLESS! Everything is MEANINGLESS! says the Teacher. … Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind. For God will bring every deed into judgement, including every deed, whether good or evil. (Ecclesiastes 12:1a, 5a b & d, 6a & b, 7, 8, 13, 14; NIV)

We have all got to be careful of that!

This music video goes along with what I am trying to say:

“Empty”-Michael Tait

“Finding Normal-an Uninvited Change, an Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“While my faith didn’t necessarily disappear when I was in college, it also didn’t grow. I was stagnant. And if you know anything about stagnant water, you know it’s prone to filth and disease. There is nothing in this world that is stagnant and good.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“Dirty Water”-Lecrae

USA Memorial Day

In the USA, we celebrate Memorial Day to give honor and respect to fallen American soldiers. Let’s give the proper honor and respect to those fallen soldiers, both past and present.

However, why doesn’t Jesus Christ have celebratory day where we can celebrate Him all that He accomplished? You say Chistmas and Easter. Christmas has has turned, to its detriment, to commercialization, forgetting the real reason why we celebrate this holiday. And Easter, do you know what that was supposed to celebrate? It wasn’t that which we celebrate today. It was to celebrate a god that if celebrated properly would give you many children. Why do you think a bunny was chosen. Think about it!

Yet, Jesus Christ is not dead!!! Really, “look” for Him, and I promise you, you won’t be disappointed.

“Where Is God When It Hurts?” by Philip Yancey (35)

“In some incomprehensible way, because of Jesus, God hears our cries differently.”-Philip Yancey

Just click on the links below:

“Cry Out To Jesus”-Third Day

“Cry In My Heart”-Starfield

“Even If (All The More)-Jeremy Riddle

“Even If”-Kutless

“Finding Normal-an Uninvited Change, an Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“I’m not ungrateful for being raised in a Christian home, and my foundation wasn’t completely false or cracked. I just realized some things I know now that I didn’t completely realize back then. … My upbringing in the church helped build my character and strengthen my moral fabric.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“The More I Seek You”-Kari Jobe

“Build My Life”-HOUSEFIRES

“Who Am I”-Casting Crowns

The King of Change…

Change. Jesus Christ is The King of Change. He is always The King of Change exhibited in His physical life on earth. He, Himself, is not subject to change, yet He invites all humanity to change to meet His requirements to be with God. Furthermore, He wants us to fit into His plans because they will somehow let us be better people. Think I am a hypocrite? Before you put down your device, hear me out.

As I said before, God wants a relationship with you. That is one of His deepest desires. There’s not one person that He says, “I don’t want a relationship with him or her because of what they will do or have done.” Look at the Apostle Paul, the murderer turn into an apostle…

Yet, throughout the ages to this present age and on going, God wants a relationship with all of humanity. And humanity had it for a brief time when Adam and Eve were experiencing tremendous bliss before the took and completely devoured the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

At first, I bet you that fruit was tasteful, but like a person who has desiring eyes, once they have it the person is never completely satisfied. So God, in His ultimate wisdom, bans Adam and Eve from enjoying that fruit. But even if Adam and Eve were successful from staying away from appealing fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, then you have to deal with their sons and presumably daughters. The temptation would have been to great once they were confronted by a talking serpent. And don’t think we would do any better. At some point, we would have sinned by taking and devouring the ever-looking scrumptious fruit. (Genesis 1-3)

Once sinned, God went looking for His new creation, Adam and Eve. Not as a vengeful Father, but as a caring One. God wanted to pursue His creation not punish it. However, He could not have Adam and Eve eat the fruit of the tree of Life since that would mean they would enter eternal life maimed.

For Romans 3:23 says,

For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. (KJV)

That was a long way of saying that God desires relationships, but can’t because we have all sinned. Through His Son Jesus, God seeks a way to improve our relationship with Him. Once you actively believe in Jesus Christ, and what Jesus Christ has done for you, then you gain eternal life instead of eternal death. For it is through the eternal Lamb led to slaughter, that all of humanity has access to be with God. If accepted, that indicates one big change.

So, what is The King of Change calling you to do? Do you want join us who have already accepted Change from The King of Change? Just be ready. It might mean a Change in work fields? Change geographical areas, which might even mean moving to another state, country, or continent? Change in habits? Or Change to further your walk with Jesus Christ?

It’s all a little bit scary or fearful, but Change always is. Why not consult The King of Change to find out what should you do or where you should go?

“Finding Normal-an Uninvited Change, an Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“A lot of what I did and how I lived was motivated put of selfish pride. I wanted to use Jesus to improve my own status and to get what I wanted.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

Videos from YouTube that have to do with giving up control of your own life:

“Control”-Tenth Avenue North

“From The Inside Out”-Hillsong

“Where Is God When It Hurts?” by Philip Yancey (34)

“Suffering served as kind of a learning experience for God. Such words may seem faintly heretical, but I am merely following phraseology from the book of Hebrews.”-Philip Yancey

“By Faith”-Keith & Kristyn Getty

“Leap of Faith”-Lecrae

“Finding Normal-An Uninvited Change, An Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“I recall going to church on most Sundays and following all the rules needed to maintain the ‘reputation’ of a good Christian, which I believe is very similar to the American churches today. This rules-and-checklist mindset led to self-centered faith, and because of that I never surrendered my life to God. I still counted on myself to do the bulk of the ‘work’ and grossly overestimated my contribution to my salvation.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

Here are a couple of YouTube Music videos that will address this matter of pride:

“Pride Away”-Kutless

“Pride Away (lyrics only)”-Kutless

“Identity”-Kutless

Righteous Risk…

Matthew 25:14-30 goes like this:

A Story About Three Servants

14 “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who was going to another place for a visit. Before he left, he called for his servants and told them to take care of his things while he was gone.15 He gave one servant five bags of gold, another servant two bags of gold, and a third servant one bag of gold, to each one as much as he could handle. Then he left.

16 The servant who got five bags went quickly to invest the money and earned five more bags. 17 In the same way, the servant who had two bags invested them and earned two more. 18 But the servant who got one bag went out and dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money.

19 “After a long time the master came home and asked the servants what they did with his money. 20 The servant who was given five bags of gold brought five more bags to the master and said, ‘Master, you trusted me to care for five bags of gold, so I used your five bags to earn five more.’21 The master answered, ‘You did well. You are a good and loyal servant. Because you were loyal with small things, I will let you care for much greater things. Come and share my joy with me.’

22 “Then the servant who had been given two bags of gold came to the master and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of gold to care for, so I used your two bags to earn two more.’23 The master answered, ‘You did well. You are a good and loyal servant. Because you were loyal with small things, I will let you care for much greater things. Come and share my joy with me.’

24 “Then the servant who had been given one bag of gold came to the master and said, ‘Master, I knew that you were a hard man. You harvest things you did not plant. You gather crops where you did not sow any seed. 25 So I was afraid and went and hid your money in the ground. Here is your bag of gold.’ 26 The master answered, ‘You are a wicked and lazy servant! You say you knew that I harvest things I did not plant and that I gather crops where I did not sow any seed. 27 So you should have put my gold in the bank. Then, when I came home, I would have received my gold back with interest.’

28 “So the master told his other servants, ‘Take the bag of gold from that servant and give it to the servant who has ten bags of gold. 29 Those who have much will get more, and they will have much more than they need. But those who do not have much will have everything taken away from them.’ 30 Then the master said, ‘Throw that useless servant outside, into the darkness where people will cry and grind their teeth with pain.’

(NCV)

For 47 years, since I was born, this passage of Scripture has been used, almost exclusively, about money. However, God has given me the ability to see past the words written on the actual pages of the 66 manuscripts which make up the Holy Bible. Although the direct words has important applications, I am going to attempt for you to see it as I see it.

Two out of the three servants doubled their possessions the man left them with, whereas the other was so afraid of losing the man’s “money” that the servant hid the “money” in the ground until the master came back. The difference is that the two servants had to risk the possession that the master had entrusted to them in order to come back with the report that they doubled the man’s money. Yet, the master did not say how long he would be gone. However, with the man being gone so long, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear that they made some risky investments of this man’s possession. Maybe they lost a few items along the way; yet when the master finally came back, the servants were pleased to report that they doubled the man’s possessions.

I wish the third servant had learned to take the righteous risk that the other two did; however, he or she did not. See, they were so afraid of losing the man’s possession (the master’s money) they, instead, hid the possession. After studying this passage of Scripture I would say that possession is eternal life through Jesus Christ.

See, no mention of a bank was used in the Righteous Riskers story where they could deposit the money, and thus collect interest. No! They put their money to work, going outside the “traditional” method of collecting interest. It took great risk; however, these two servants had a high expectation of what was required of them, especially where they didn’t know what time the master was coming back. So they put the master’s money to good use.

The money, in this case, was used to serve a purpose. The money, itself, was used to get people’s attention (because all people care about money, even the True Life Christians), not as some investment strategy. Rather, True Life Christians are supposed to spread the eternal life message of Jesus Christ to the world (even though it might cost everything you have), starting with the ones closest to you no matter what the personal cost (and I wouldn’t think of cost in the traditional sense, as in terms of money).

I hope the reading of this gives you something to ponder and then act as James 2:14-26 so eloquently puts it:

14 My brothers and sisters, if people say they have faith, but do nothing, their faith is worth nothing. Can faith like that save them? 15 A brother or sister in Christ might need clothes or food. 16 If you say to that person, “God be with you! I hope you stay warm and get plenty to eat,” but you do not give what that person needs, your words are worth nothing. 17 In the same way, faith by itself—that does nothing—is dead.

18 Someone might say, “You have faith, but I have deeds.” Show me your faith without doing anything, and I will show you my faith by what I do.

19 You believe there is one God. Good! But the demons believe that, too, and they tremble with fear.

20 You foolish person! Must you be shown that faith that does nothing is worth nothing?

21 Abraham, our ancestor, was made right with God by what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar. 22 So you see that Abraham’s faith and the things he did worked together. His faith was made perfect by what he did. 23 This shows the full meaning of the Scripture that says: “Abraham believed God, and God accepted Abraham’s faith, and that faith made him right with God.” And Abraham was called God’s friend.

24 So you see that people are made right with God by what they do, not by faith only.

25 Another example is Rahab, a prostitute, who was made right with God by something she did. She welcomed the spies into her home and helped them escape by a different road.

26 Just as a person’s body that does not have a spirit is dead, so faith that does nothing is dead! (NCV)

——————————————————Here is a couple of YouTube music videos that demonstrate the kind of action that True Life Christians should be following:

“Love Is Action”-Tauren Wells

“Let’s Talk About It”-Branan Murphy

“Finding Normal-An Uninvited Change, An Unexpected Outcome” by Jeff Huxford, M.D.

“Although I had made plenty of mistakes along the way, which all of us do, God was an integral part of who I was and who I became.”-Jeff Huxford, M.D.

An appropriate YouTube Music video:

“Control”-Tenth Avenue North

“Where Is God When It Hurts? by Philip Yancey (33)

“The presence of suffering does not mean that God has forsaken us. To the contrary, by joining us here on earth God gave solid, historical proof that He hears our groans and even groans and even groans them with us.”-Philip Yancey

“I Am Not Alone”-Kari Jobe

“He Knows”-Jeremy Camp

“Where Is God When It Hurts?” by Philip Yancey (32)

“Why did Jesus have to suffer and die? The question deserves an entire book, and has prompted many books. But among the answers the Bible gives is the most mysterious answer.”-Philip Yancey

“The Humility of Christ”-Timothy Brindle

The Gift of Salvation Won’t Cost You Any Money! (It Will Cost You Something Else, Though…)

Certain words inspire us, like the word FREE! To get something for nothing is a deal, right? The level of the FREE gift depends on its monetary value. The more money that it’s worth, the better it is.

Think of God saying to His Son,

I want You to go down to earth, all the expected fan-fair that Your whole physical life deserves, I want You to act in humility. In humility, I want You to act even in Your birth. See, I have scheduled a birth in an animal feeding trough trench all the way up to Your physical death. But wait a minute. After being physically dead for 3 days, then I’m going to raise You from the dead. Yet, I want You to offer it for Free!

It is FREE! It is FREE! The act of Jesus Christ giving up His own life, He could charge sums of money that even Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, or the President of the United States would leave them wanting more money so that could spend an eternity with God. Yet, it is FREE!

However, that’s where the FREE gift takes something more. Essentially, the gift is FREE, but it will take your physical life where you will have to suffer for the name of Jesus Christ. Want proof? Just look in the Holy Scripture.

Matthew 16:24 says,

Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wants to come with Me, he must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Me.” (HCSB)

Or Luke 9:23, which says,

And He said to all, “If anyone would come after Me, let Him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me.” (ESV)

Or 1 Peter 2:21,

This is what you were called to do, because Christ suffered for you and gave you an example to follow. So you should do as He did. (NCV)

Hummm… That seems pretty convincing. Doesn’t it? Will you live the life of sacrifice for God?

Click on these appropriate YouTube videos:.

“To Live Is Christ”-Sidewalk Prophets

“The Cause of Christ”-Kari Jobe