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About jellicochris

  • Birthday 11/23/1983

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  1. Still Living by Faith I ended up in Hebrews 11 this morning. I have a daily reading plan that I use, but I also like to venture off and just see what comes my way. But this really spoke to me, and I hope it does you as well. “Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. Through their faith, the people in days of old earned a good reputation” (Hebrews 11:1-2). “It was by faith that Abel brought a more acceptable offering to God than Cain did” (Heb. 11:4). “It was by faith that Enoch was taken up to heaven without dying - For before he was taken up, he was known as a person who pleased God” (Heb. 11:5). “It was by faith that Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before” (Heb. 11:7). “It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance” (Heb. 11:8). “It was by faith that even Sarah was able to have a child, though she was barren and was too old. She believed that God would keep his promise” (Heb. 11:11). Now this is the verse that really touched my heart and made me really think about a lot of things. “All these people died still believing what God had promised them. They did not receive what was promised, but they saw it all from a distance and welcomed it.” (Heb. 11:13). Look at how faithful all of these people were. Abraham left his home and spent his whole life living in a tent. Living in a tent! They trusted God with everything in them. If this was you or I, we would not have done this. We would have given up so easily and just went back home. We would have returned back to what was comfortable for us - what we know. We do not like living life by faith. But when we experience Christ, we are confident and comfortable living a life of faith and trusting Him. We realize that this place we live in, we are exiles, because our real home is with Jesus Christ! We have a heavenly home. This is what drives that obedience and trust found in the people of old. I hope you are encouraged by this and reminded that everything you see before you will one day be gone. A lot of people work their whole lives because they want to leave behind something for their family - a house, a car, money, etc. I tell you that I have learned that the best thing you can leave behind for your family is your faith in Jesus Christ. Are you living a life of faith that will impact those around you? Do not get me wrong - there is nothing bad about working hard and making sure your family is taken care of. I do that myself. But the best way you can take care of them is to have a strong relationship and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. Be Encouraged, Chris
  2. Nice to meet you Harold. What is your title called?
  3. Hope everyone has a great 4th. Be safe
  4. That is awesome Sometimes we are so distracted that we miss these valuable moments that God speaks to us. I am a routine person myself. If i am busy or late, i want to put things off to the next day - even reading my Bible. I am always reading now. Anytime I have a free minute I am pulling Logos up on my phone. Thank you for sharing.
  5. The Nature of Christ: Part Two The Nature of Jesus What would it be like to be God, and to know that you are God? We all like to pretend we are God sometimes. We want to act like we have the power to control certain situations, or we want to act like we can control another person, and our list of trying to be God goes on, and on, and on. Jesus was just like us. He could smell, touch, feel things, experience hurt, pain, anger, and He was God. Imagine what you would do when someone hurt you and your anger burned strong within you. What would you do? Would you denigrate them into a steaming pile of goo, or would you love them and offer them forgiveness and die for them? I am willing to bet the 1st would be your choice. Imagine the self-control that it took Jesus to hold back on those Pharisees. Imagine the self-control that it took him to not lust after women. Imagine the self-control that it took to walk to that cross. Guys we are weak. It is about time that we step out of our little bubble of denial and admit that. No matter what we do, we can not achieve the things that Jesus achieved. If we could, he would not have had to endure the painful death on the cross that we deserved. Remember – he did that for us! When someone makes me angry, I usually get upset and overcome with emotions. Instead of talking to God and saying, “Lord, please help me to forgive this person.” It is realistically more like, “Lord, please help me to not kill this person right now.” And by not going to them and resolving the issue immediately, resentment and hatred toward that person start to build. If I continue to let this go unhandled, then I am talking to someone else about the person behind their back. That is like pouring gasoline on a fire. We have all been guilty of this at some point in our lives. I am not God and I do not hold the position to judge anyone for their actions. I am a sinner, you are a sinner, they are a sinner, we are all sinners. What is the difference between all the sins that I have committed verses the sin that a person commits against me? God forgave me for all the horrible things that I have done. So why can I not forgive the person for doing me wrong? That is the proper response. Forgive and forgive immediately. Make things right immediately. Between you and the person. Not your entire click, or your entire work family. Although our nature will never be like that of Jesus Christ, our attitude can be altered by prayer, the study of God’s Word, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit who is within us! It is up to us if we choose to follow! The next time someone upsets you, try something different. Try to gently tell them how they upset you and that you forgive them for that. See if that does not work better than allowing anger and resentment to take control. Be Encouraged, Chris
  6. The Nature of Christ “Though he was God he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges and took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross” (Philippians 2:6-8). As I was reading this, I was thinking, “How would I behave in this situation?” I would have been shooting lightning bolts at people and levitating them straight up off the earth that I created. We could not possibly control a position of such power. We would be completely overcome by it. Jesus, he did not selfishly grasp hold of the position he had like I would have. Instead, he was willing to give himself over to serving our needs. Maybe if Jesus would have behaved in a manner likewise, the Jewish leaders would not have been so infuriated with Him. He was claiming to be God but seemed as a weak little man. If Jesus would have blasted them with a lightning bolt or two, I am sure their minds would have quickly changed about Him. They probably would not have plotted to kill Him, but instead would have worshiped Him. But that is not the way God wants to gain our attention is it? Jesus set the example of what God is like – not a dictator, but a loving, serving, father. Jesus did something that is extremely hard for me to do. Verse 7, he emptied himself. He emptied himself of all self-interests. He came here to do one thing, and one thing only and that was the will of the Father. For God to become a man was extremely humbling, but he did not stop there. He completely took himself the extra mile and took the role of a servant. When Jesus came, we all should have fallen to our knees in complete worship and praise – our Lord is here. Instead, the Lord fell to his knees to serve us. The Creator served His very creation. Wow! Man, Oh man! A lot of days I ask myself, “How should I live as a Christian?” No better example of humiliation and a complete selfless attitude could possibly be given than that of Christ. That is the example the believers in Philippi were being encouraged to follow. That is the example we are encouraged to follow today. Verse 2 - be like minded – live humbly before God, and each other. God sent Jesus on a mission. This is His briefing – “1. That He should assume human nature by being born of a woman, and thus enter into temporal relations; and that He should assume this nature with its present infirmities, though without sin. 2. That He, who as the Son of God was superior to the law, should place Himself under the law; that He should enter, not merely into the natural, but also into the penal and federal relation to the law, in order to pay the penalty for sin and to merit everlasting life for the elect. 3. That He, after having merited forgiveness of sins and eternal life for His own, should apply to them the fruits of His merits: complete pardon, and the renewal of their lives through the powerful operation of the Holy Spirit. By doing this He would render it absolutely certain that believers would consecrate their lives to God” (Berkhof, L. (1938). Systematic theology (p. 269). Grand Rapids, MI: Wm. B. Eerdmans publishing co). Jesus perfectly accomplished all these things that we could not. So, what is your response to this. What is your response to Him? Be Encouraged, Chris
  7. The Golden Rule “Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against a fellow Israelite but love your neighbor as yourself” (Leviticus 19:18, NLT). What happens when someone does us wrong? We usually act out from our emotions. If we are hurting, we want to inflict that hurt upon the other person. Hurt people hurt people! Sometimes when we are upset, we do not even say anything to the other person. But we sure do tell everyone else. We talk about the problem behind their back and do you know what that does? It only makes the situation worse. This just leads to resentment and hatred. Since the 18th century the “Golden Rule” has commonly designated this ethical maxim. Do unto others as you would have others do unto you. That sounds familiar. Probably because Jesus said this in Matthew 7:12. So, if you are treating someone poorly, you should think about this. Is this how you want to be treated in return? When someone is doing you wrong, it does not feel good does it? The natural consequence of harboring ill feelings and a grudge-bearing attitude is going to result in vengeance. You are going to do something that you will regret! The kind of love that is being discussed here means that a person is to forgive a neighbor’s wrongs as quickly as they would forgive themselves. It means you are to show others the same practical care that you show yourself! For me, that was a major problem. The care that I showed myself was alcohol and drug abuse. I had a poor view of my self-worth, and I treated myself like garbage. I am 36 years old and I am just now realizing this is why I have treated people so poorly throughout my life. This is why so many of my relationships have failed. This is why my relationship with God failed! Is this you too? How could I love and respect God if I could not love and respect myself? When God would tell me I was the apple of his eye, I would call him a liar. I will tell you what helped me to turn around. It was when I done someone horribly wrong, but yet they did not do me wrong. Instead, they showed me love, compassion, and forgiveness. It took that happening for me to see the love, compassion, and forgiveness that God had extended to me so many times. It took that for me to extend that same love, compassion, and forgiveness to myself! I am trying my best to live by Jesus’ example. I fail all the time, but Jesus did not! “He did not retaliate when he was insulted, nor threaten revenge when he suffered. He left his case in the hands of God who always judges fairly” 1 Peter 2:23. If we repay evil with evil, we are putting ourselves in the place of God. And we are also sinning against the sinner! God is the only fair judge! Your job, my job, is to love. So start showing people how you want to be treated today. We all want and desire to be loved! Be Encouraged, Chris
  8. Mark 1:21-28 I remember the 1st time I heard expository preaching. It was different for me in so many ways. It really penetrated my heart because I was understanding the Scripture the way it was meant to be understood – in context. It challenged me to not only grow deeper in my knowledge of God’s Word, but to grow in my daily life of living that Word out. I could not fully explain these things that day and I imagine that is how the audience in this synagogue is feeling as well. There was just something about this Jesus guy, something different from all the other teachers. When I teach, I will quote sources when I use them, and the scribes did the same thing when they taught in the synagogue. Jesus would explain the Scripture in a way that they had never quite experienced and then I suppose they were looking for the source of those words. Jesus never quoted anyone because He was the source. The author was standing right in front of them. They could see the Word that we read with their very own eyes and they could hear his voice with their very own ears. And then in verse 23, “A man in the synagogue who was possessed by an evil spirit cried out.” The only one in that religious gathering that knew who Jesus was, was the evil spirit. When the Word of God is spoken it has so much power. It convicts your heart and it initiates a desire in you to listen. It breaks you down and makes you aware that you are sinful; that you are separated from God. The people’s hearts were just so hardened that they could not turn to it. They wondered but they would not accept. I want to make you aware of this. Where was this evil spirit at? This is a question I want you to answer. Comment below. These people had never experienced anything like what took place that day. Jesus, the Son of God was right in front of them. Nature knew it, Satan confessed it, Angels recognized it, and here in this passage – the men felt it! But they would not accept it. How about you?
  9. My life is just a pile of ashes Blown away in the wind every single day My life is just a big old pile of ashes Nothing ever seems to change! Until one day I met You You took the ashes and made something new You created new life within me And now my life is to serve you! My life is just a pile of ashes Molded and shaped and created new My life is forever changed By your Love, Mercy, and Grace Lord forever you I praise!
  10. Crazy times we are living in, but honestly it has been like that and always will on this fallen world! One day though, one day things will change Blood is our lifeline right? Without it we could not live. It was the blood of the precious lamb that washed me white as snow! You, I, and every other living being has blood. And that blood is the same color Amen!
  11. As I was reading Scripture this morning, I was reading in Mark chapter 1. I came across verse 9: “One day Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee, and John baptized him in the Jordan river” (Mark 1:9, NLT). I was reading that, and I was thinking about Nazareth just a little. If you think about it, the people back then would have probably thought that their Messiah would come from Jerusalem rather than a little small village that really had no significance whatsoever. It reminds me of Jellico, here where I live. It is a small town of maybe 2,500 people if that. In the bigger cities people always say, “Nothing good ever comes out of Jellico.” That is because this little town is overrun with drugs. But I can see the people on the scene back then thinking that very same thing about Jesus and about Nazareth: “Nothing really good ever comes out of Nazareth.” And then another thing that really smacked me across the face was Jesus being baptized. Especially in a baptism for the repentance of sins. If Jesus needs to be forgiven of sins, then we are all very much in trouble. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For God made Christ, who never sinned to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.” Shew! Thank goodness – that was a close one! So, Jesus participated in John’s baptism not because he needed to repent of his sins, but he did it to identify with us – sinful humanity! Wow! This is it! The time we have been waiting for is happening … Then the spirit descended on Jesus like a dove when he popped up out of that water verse 10. This verse took me all the way back to Genesis 8:10-12: “After waiting another 7 days, Noah released the dove again. This time the dove returned to him in the evening with a fresh olive leaf in its beak. Then Noah knew that the floodwaters were almost gone. He waited another seven days and then released the dove again. This time it did not come back.” God’s promise to Noah of a new world was there! And it is here in Mark that we see the Messiah coming to fulfill the promise that God made to his people! Have you ever saw a dove? We had one hanging around the house here for a while. It was so gentle, just as Jesus the gentle servant who was coming to bring healing and restoration following a message or repentance by John. Israel was being asked to turn around. You are going the wrong way folks! Turn around from your disobedience and rebellion and start anew by turning to the Messiah – he is here! Hope you guys have a fantastic day. I was super blessed with my Bible study and I just had to share 😊 Be Encouraged, Chris
  12. How Do You See Yourself? “Then God said, ‘Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground. So, God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God, he created them; male and female he created them’” (Genesis 1:26-27, NLT). Growing up, I always had a poor value of myself. I believed that I was a horrible person. I did a lot of bad things because of my drug and alcohol addiction: I stole from people, I lied to people, I used people etc. I did a lot of bad things, so I thought I was a bad person that deserved nothing but bad things. Even though that has been a long time ago, those memories still stay with me. I forget to remind myself that I am different from all other forms of creation. It is only human life that is called “created in the image of God.” God has given you and I communicable attributes. We have the ability to learn and increase our knowledge, we can reach a certain level of spiritual understanding, we can be very creative, if we seek it – we can become very wise, we can love, we can feel and show compassion, etc. God breathed His very breath into us. Even though I always had a poor view of my self-worth, looking back, there were others that were trying to remind me of who I am, and who they are. I was given second chances by people that should have wronged me, I was forgiven by those that I hurt tremendously, and I was shown love when I only reflected hate. This is that beautiful image of God and that beautiful Spirit working its wonders. I sometimes wondered how someone could be willing to forgive me so easily. When I understood the forgiveness of God, and how he had forgiven me, and what He had done for me – then it made sense to me. You must understand that we all need forgiveness! Every single one of us! I remember when my daughter Madison was just a little girl, maybe only 2 or 3 years old. She was so loving and so understanding and forgiving to be so young. I remember when I would let her down, she would sit in my lap and rub my hair and say, “It is ok daddy, you have pretty hair.” (Laugh out loud) I must put aside my anger, put aside my differences, and have that sweet child-like faith and compassion to be able to forgive in that way. Don’t we all? No matter how you see yourself, how you see others – we are created alike. We have been created in the image of God! We are all valuable and precious to God. Should we not all be willing to forgive? Be Encouraged, Chris 😊
  13. This really made me think about something - thank you! My name is Chris, but for 3 years it was 414734 because I belonged to the state of TN. I had to memorize that number because when they would call me they did not call me Chris. I had lost all of my rights and I still cannot vote or own a firearm. The wonderful thing is that through that horrible time, God still knew my name Thank you for your devotionals - I enjoy reading them. Blessings
  14. My name is Chris Stringer. I am 36 years old and I live in Jellico, TN. I was a Youth Pastor for 4 years and an Encourager Coach for Celebrate Recovery for 6 years. I attended Grace Christian University to pursue an Associate degree in Leadership/Ministry. I had a wonderful relationship with the Lord, and a great relationship with people. About 2 years ago, I began drinking again. I did not realize why I picked the bottle back up until maybe 3 months ago. I lost my grandmother on my mother’s side and it triggered something inside me. When I was 12 years old, I lost my grandmother on my father’s side, and I used alcohol to deal with the pain. I realized that I returned to that 12-year-old little boy that was hurting and tried to run from the pain instead of trusting God and growing closer to Him through it. I turned my back on God and my entire family. I was in denial with everything that was going on and luckily, God pulled me out of it. It came at a great cost. I caused damage to my relationship with God and all those in my life that love me the most. On July 1st I will have 3 months sober from alcohol. My relationship with the Lord is growing and being restored 😊 but the earthly consequences of my sinful behavior still haunt me. I never liked to read and write. I struggled with college with having to read and write so much (laugh out loud). My love for reading started as I met Jesus Christ and wanted to know Him more. I found Him in each page of Scripture and learnt just a little more about His characteristics and who He is. My love for writing began with an assignment that my professor gave me one day. He told me to go to the Dollar General store, park the car and just sit there and take everything in. He told me after I had done that for a few moments, to start writing. He told me to write based on the five senses – what I could touch, describe in detail what I could see, what I could hear all the way down to the wind blowing a leaf across the parking lot, the sensation of what I smelt, and if I could taste. I remember describing the sensation of the piece of gum I was chewing at that moment 😊. After I wrote a 5-page paper in the parking lot that day, writing changed for me and the way I saw things changed for me. And now – here I am 😊. Glad to have found this site and all the wonderful people in it. God bless!
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