Open letter to my gay and lesbian family

It’s been a rough past 7 days, hasn’t it. My heart broke into thousands of pieces as I watched the nightmare that happened to you on Sunday. I say this to you, because it could have been you, it could have been any of us. It could have definitely have been me, too. Along with this atrocity, this senseless shooting, something else happened that broke my heart a million times more. Some humans decided that it was ok to condemn you. You, the one with the open wound, the one with your heart in your hands broken of despair and anguish. As fear entered your heart, some chose to expose their selfish desire for judgement, calling themselves pastors, teachers, God lovers. They chose to ignore your pain, the wounded soldier, and kick you where you thought it couldn’t hurt more. Claiming to know what God thought of you, they made their assumptions known and that probably caused you to harden your heart to the One who is more heartbroken than all of us, God. In His name, a shooter murdered your friends and in His name, strangers condemned you. That is not the God that I know.

I wanted to introduce to you, my friend Jesus. As I write this letter to you, I’m reminded of how He is called “the man of sorrows” in scripture. It says ” He was rejected by mankind, a man of suffering, and familiar with pain. Like one from whom people hide their faces he was despised, and we held him in low esteem”. Pretty much like you. His friends where fishermen, tax collectors, prostitutes. He made a lot of wine at a wedding when they ran out and feed a multitude of over five thousand with five fishes and two breads. He gave sight the blind, touched lepers and healed them, raised dead to life and healed every kind of sickness that existed. His message was a message of love and redemption and He was despised by religious leaders for it. They felt that His message of love would destroy their religion. They followed Him around to kill Him because of it. Religious leaders of His time did not understand Jesus, and they rejected Him and killed Him. His message didn’t come with a set of rules, it didn’t come with strings attached and they hated Him for it. Jesus was a threat.

So you see, it doesn’t surprise me that religious leaders today reject you, too. Maybe because they don’t understand the immense love Jesus has for you. So, I wanted you to know how much He does, love you, excessively and extravagantly. He loves you today and he knows you more than your closest friend. No strings attached. His words resonate in my heart as I write to you, ” for God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him”. This is for you, and He still loves to heal broken hearts, I know because He healed mine.

Today, I ask you not to judge Jesus for the opinions of some of His “followers”, and the reason why I unquote it is because, Jesus said his friends would be known by the level they love people, so you can make your own assumptions on that. So I offer you my friend, Jesus to you, and His simple message of love.

God bless you.

Judge and Jury

A couple of weeks ago, a story broke out on the news about rape. It was a story that is far too common in today’s world and it resonated with so many of us for many reasons. It was not a new story, but how the case unfolded was new and unprecedented. A college student rapes an unconscious woman behind a dumpster, he is caught in the act by two hero students that stop the attack and hold him until police comes.
Fast forward to court proceedings and he is given a sentence of 6 months in jail after he is found guilty. People all over the world are outraged and the story becomes viral. We hear the letters written to the judge by the victim and the perpetrators’ parents, both expressing their emotions and asking for justice. Yet, this judge decided to give this student a 6 month jail sentence for such a crime and the world is outraged.  
Something happened when the judgement came down for this perpetrator. The judge now, is being judged by every one else as just as bad as the one that committed the crime. Is that fair? I would say that It comes with the job. When you become a judge, you are saying that you are fit enough to make decisions that are going to change people’s lives. Not just that, but you swear upon it. As a judge you have to measure the amount of evidence that is brought to you. Not many judges make quick decisions on guilt or innocence, but I am certain that it is not an easy thing to do. If there is a guilty verdict then the judge has to give the punishment of the crime. The judge is being the face of justice, not just for the victim, but for the person that is standing there for the crime as well. In this case, many felt that the punishment did not fit the crime and it has come to a point where this judge might even loose his job. People from everyone claim he is unfit to be judge and from what I remember, a petition was being passed on and they were already at 2 million signatures. 
We fast forward again to this weeks’ shooting in Orlando where 49 people are dead along with 53 injured and there is a lot of judgement coming from everywhere. The news are bringing information on the shooter and his family, as we learn more and more of who committed this crime and what his intentions where. We feel the outrage of the world for such a heinous crime.  
Along with the news, opinions started to pop up. Many well known pastors and leaders in the christian community came in solidarity with the gay community, praying in support of the victims and the families. But, we also found people that seemed as if they had no heart, no compassion for someone’s pain of a loss one. We saw videos of Pastors rooting violence towards the gay community, and people joining to applaud their behavior quoting scripture. A lot of opinions to say the least. It’s been a long couple of days. 
This morning, I remembered the judge in the rape case and something resonated inside of me. I am sure if he would have know the backlash his decision was going to bring out, he would have chosen a different punishment. I wonder if he wished he didn’t judge that situation that way he did. If he still had the same conviction that he chose right. I then realized that I don’t ever want to be in the judges’ shoes! That is not a job that I want! You see, being a judge in this earth makes you a human judge, a judge that can make mistakes. For this particular judge it has made him just as bad as the perpetrator of this horrific crime. Could it be that judgement can make me just as guilty as the person that committed the crime? Actually, there is scripture that says that, it was written by Paul to the church of The Romans, he says:

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.”  Romans 2:1

Why do we put ourselves in the judges chair over and over? Do we feel that we have the obligation? We don’t! NO! Jesus said in John 8:15″For you’ve set yourself up as judges of others based on outward appearances, but I certainly never judge others in that way“, but He just didn’t say it there, He asks us to refrain from judging others many times throughout his time on earth. We all know the scripture “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye” Matt 7:3-5. Strong words from Jesus. 
Today, I felt this as a gift from heaven! I don’t have to judge anyone! My input is not necessary! And it honestly made me so happy! I don’t have to decide if anyone is guilty or innocent, I am called to love like Jesus loved. I am called to be compassionate, I am called to feed the hungry and bring good news to the broken! I am called to be the light of the world, the salt of the earth. Regardless of the choices that someone can make in their lives, who ever they are, wherever they’re from, it shouldn’t matter. I am the least to give judgement on anyone. This week taught me that lesson loud and clear. Jesus said Our love toward people is what would show the world we were His brothers and sisters! (John 13:35). Our behavior is shaping the view of Jesus in people that don’t know Him. Think about this! 

I read a great quote from Shawn Bolz yesterday, he said “the fastest way to become the devil is to try and become God”. Judgement is playing God. Are you ready for that commitment? I know I am not. And I don’t want to be judge, I will leave that job to the one that sits on the Throne of heaven. Next time I want to pass judgement on someone I will remember that judge, and choose not to.  
Blessings,
Macky 

Jesus and one of world’s smallest seed

Isn’t it amazing that the time that Jesus spoke about faith He decided to compare our requests to a mountain, and our requirements of faith to a seed? This picture is a mustard seed. As you can tell, it’s really small. Yet, Jesus compared the faith we need for miracles to be “at least” this small. When the disciples asked Him to grow their faith, this was His answer! Isn’t this amazing? It’s kind of like when your kid asks you to give them the PlayStation of their dreams and you want them to know the value of money, so you sell it to them for a dollar.

Jesus wanted us to understand that it was not about how much faith you or me can have, but how capable He is to move any obstacle in our lives. He wanted us to understand that It has to do with ACTION. “If you have faith, SAY TO THE MOUNTAIN”! It’s not hope the mountain moves, pray the mountain moves, watch the maintain move, NO! He tells us to speak to the mountain and tell it what to do. It takes a mustard seed of faith for you to speak to the mountain. And what is a seed anyway if you don’t plant it? When we activate our faith by speaking it out it’s like planting your faith so it can grow. And Jesus said God will honor your faith! In HIS words, “It (the mountain, sickness, money issues, anything you feel is beyond your control) will move, NOTHING WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU“. Matthew 17:20

So today, I want to encourage you, to step out in faith and speak out where you want to plant your faith. You can tell me, ‘but I don’t have much faith, Macky! I don’t even know what I believe!’. Jesus compared the amount of faith you need need to move a mountain to the size of a mustard seed… Which is pretty much nothing, so I think He wanted to tell you, you don’t need much, just speak to the mountain, my friend. Speak to the mountain.

My opinion on opinions 

Presidential elections brings out the politician in all of us. I was the first in line to post about how I felt about the candidates. This year, it has been much harder for me to grasp the intensity of it all for so many reasons. I am sure you all have things to say about this year’s choices. But this post is not about who to vote for or why. It’s about me, about how I am supposed to change my surroundings. What do people really see? Does anyone want to hear my words? Maybe, I think in my realm of work a lot of brides want my opinion, but I can’t make choices for anyone. We all have the opportunity to make our own choices.  As a lover of Jesus, it’s so hard for me not to constantly talk about Him. But I don’t want my words to be the only thing that screams Jesus in my life.  
Your cleansed and grateful life, not your words, will bear witness to what I have done” Matt 8:4
So my point is, regardless of who you vote for and why, always remember that it’s our lives that scream out God’s influence in our lives. That will always shout a lot harder than our Facebook posts.

Jesus said it so clearly that today my prayer is just this. “Father, please let me be an example to others of your love and kindness, let no word out of my mouth hurt anyone or keep anyone away from your kingdom, may my testimony show your goodness and faithfulness as I learn to walk in Your ways”

Thankful

As we take the dirty plates to the kitchen and we get ready to say goodbye to our loved ones, I ponder on this holiday that reminds us to be thankful for what life has brought us. And it has brought so much change for me. 2015 has been a year of change, of connections and blessings that I could have never dreamed of. The hardships even though they have been there are not of importance because of every single blessing that has arrived. My life will be forever changed so today, this thanksgiving 2015, I want to ponder on the future.  I am learning that to trust God in your life is to expect His hand in my future, in my day to day and know that He is there watching every single step.  
“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.”

Jeremiah 29:11 msg 
He knows what He is doing

He has it all planned out 

He won’t abandon me 

He has planned my future 
So my daily challenge is to leap into Him, breathe Him in with everything I got. Seek him with my every choice and keep my eyes open in expectation for what He’s about to do in my life. ❤️

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