Ahhhh, vacation! Time to rest and relax, right?? But how many of you have come back from vacation needing a vacation from your vacation?
Our family took a vacation a few weeks ago, and it was anything but restful. It was fun and exciting and adventurous, but not relaxing.
I think vacations really aren't for rest and relaxation. Vacations are important and needed, so if they aren’t for rest and relaxation... what are they for? I believe that vacations are to change your daily rhythm, to do things differently. They get you out of your everyday life and into a new rhythm. You may rest and relax, but that's not the point. It is to do things differently.
This is so healthy, and it's how God created us! He wants us to have a Sabbath, He wants us to change our rhythm. When we take a Sabbath we change up our routine, do things differently, and use our minds in a different way. The same is true on a vacation.
On our vacation, we had all of our family and friends...
This Sunday, we celebrate all the dads in our lives! I'm so grateful for the two amazing men in my life who I get to celebrate. My dad, Ted Wilbanks, and of course, Matt Fry, the father of my children.
Celebrating our dads is great on Father’s Day. In fact, it’s great to show honor to them every day! But for some people, this is really difficult. For many, their dads weren’t there for them. Or maybe their dad was the one who primarily hurt them. I understand that.
However, we can all be thankful for something when it comes to our dads. Even if it’s simply that they had a part in our creation.
Thankfully, we can all celebrate that we have a God who is our perfect Heavenly Father. He loves us unconditionally and he is always pursuing us. He is even able to stand in the gap when our earthly fathers disappoint us.
Our earthly fathers were born sinners, just like us! They’re not perfect. They were most likely hurt themselves, and hurting people hurt people....
I had the privilege of preaching on Philippians 1 as we kicked off a new series at C3 Church (Thanks Matt!). You can click here to watch or listen to the sermon.
When I started working on the sermon, I knew I was going to speak on joy since that is what the book of Philippians is about - How to Have Joy No Matter What.
But I was not expecting for God to do what He did. After I finished writing my sermon, I sent it to the staff that needed it to get ready for Sunday and I was ready to relax.
On my day off, I decided to casually read through Philippians 1 again and verses 15-18 jumped out at me. And one phrase in particular:
"It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so out of love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But WHAT DOES IT MATTER? The important thing is...
"Then the other administrators and high officers began searching for some fault in the way Daniel was handling government affairs, but they couldn’t find anything to criticize or condemn. He was faithful, always responsible, and completely trustworthy." Daniel 6:4
Daniel had a great reputation, even among pagan, unsaved people. I love that the leaders couldn’t find any way to criticize him and that there was nothing they could condemn him for.
Look at how he was known: Faithful, always responsible, and completely trustworthy. WOW!
What kind of reputation do YOU have? What kind of reputation do I have? Are people critical of your work ethic, your attitude, the way you do things? How do they talk about you? Do people condemn you for the choices you make? What kind of character do you have? Are you faithful, always responsible and completely trustworthy?
If you don’t know, ask some people who will tell you the truth.
It's easy to talk about how others live...