Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Under Law or Under Grace

Under Law or Under Grace? Visualize the Hebrew Tabernacle as described in Exodus and Leviticus. Put yourself in the Most Holy Place, with embroidered curtains, golden furniture and light from God's presence. Sense the holiness and mystery and grab hold of the Mercy Seat on the Ark of the Covenant. Now you are under grace.

What are you thinking about?

Are you thinking about how awesome it is that the King of the Universe is full of grace and mercy toward you? Or are you thinking about your next planned sin. Under grace doesn't mean you can do whatever you want. It means grabbing hold of the mercy seat and being covered by God's grace instead of being crushed under the weight of the law - under law.

Jesus said it best when He said, If you fall on the Rock you will be broken (as in breaking you free from sin and giving you a new life). But if the Rock falls on you, you will be crushed (as in that's it folks). So, would you rather be under grace, on top of the mercy seat, falling on the Rock Jesus Christ, or would you rather be under the law - bearing the full penalty of your deeds because you refused mercy from God?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Leave it Alone!

Once again I'd like to share from my good friend, Gene Cowden. He often sends me little gems of thought and I'd like to share this one.

When "The oxen stumbled, and Uzzah . . . steadied the Ark ," his intentions were good. He didn't want it to fall. But he overstepped his bounds and touched what belonged exclusively to God. Sometimes your "strength is to sit still" (Psalm 46:10), and take your hands off what you've entrusted to God's keeping. Even when your "oxen stumble" and things don't go the way you think they should, God doesn't need your help. He understands the situation better than you ever could, and when the time is right He'll "do wonders never before done" (Exodus 34:10 NIV). Sure, it's frustrating to have something within your grasp and not be able to reach it, especially when others who seem less deserving are enjoying what you so desperately want. But the Bible says: "Be patient . . . trust the Lord. Don't let it bother you when all goes well for those who do sinful things" (Psalm 37:7 CEV). The Canadian preacher A.B. Simpson said, "Often there is nothing as Godly as inactivity on our part, or nothing as harmful as restless working, for God has promised to work His sovereign will."
Paul writes, "Be glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient . . . and . . . prayerful" (Romans 12:12 TLB). Long-range purpose will stop you from becoming frustrated by short-term delays. That's why God said, "Whoever believes will not act hastily" (Isaiah 28:16). In Acts we read: "Paul and his companions . . . [were] kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching . . . in . . . Asia " (Acts 16:6 NIV). Why? Because:
(a) the timing wasn't right. Apollos had to go there first and lay the groundwork;
(b) God needed Paul and Barnabas elsewhere;
(c) He wanted them to be more seasoned before embarking on such a major mission.

Thanks Gene! I always appreciate your great contributions. On another note...I hate trying to log in to update my blog. Since I originally started this blog under my yahoo mail account, it has created all sorts of interesting hoops I have to go through now that it is associated with google mail. It is insane that I have no google blogs, but I have to be signed in under google mail to log in to the dashboard of this blog. Ahh, but it's worth the effort to share on this blog. Please forgive the last few weeks of frustration of not being able to get in to my dashboard because of this snafu.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Annual New Year's Letter

A scientific approach to the passing of 2009:

The Leukert five wish you the best as we begin this amazing year numbered 2010. We’d like to help you start your year with some of the best life has to offer: God’s love for each one of us, family, and the joy of fulfillment and of course the essential gift of humor. We would like to share this 7th annual Leukert New Year's Letter, reviewing the year 2009 in the scientific context of Cause and Effect.

Cause: Karl, as pastor, is started in the focused Leader’s program. He sees more clearly the importance of putting things on the calendar and planning for them.

Effect: Three incredible weekends away for just Karl and Sharon. The effects are still lingering.

Cause: A dark and slightly fuzzy substance has appeared.

Effect: Teasing Michael (14 years old) about his facial hair which reduces him to a lump of shyness.

Cause: Lost front tooth

Effect: More charm added to Matthew’s (8 years old) scar dimpled grin. When combined with his natural gift of comedy, he’s irresistible.

Cause: Sharon and some other church members join the Focused Leaders Program

Effect: Sharon now has a clearer vision and focus of what God wants her to accomplish in life. The church members that went on the retreat have a special bond and know God has great plans for us individually, as families and as a church body.

Cause: A second church was added to Karl’s responsibilities

Effect: We have begun to know and love a small group of people in Atlanta, Texas and we enjoy worshipping with them.

Cause: Staying up all night walking, running and staying energized

Effect: Thoroughly exhausted but the Jefferson Central Women’s Ministries “Pray for a Cure” team showed spirit all through the long night of Relay for Life in May. To our delight, our team was presented with a trophy for most spirited team. Sharon is glad Relay for Life is only once a year.

Cause: Saying “I do” 18 years ago

Effect: Karl and Sharon celebrated their wedding anniversary at a Bed and Breakfast in Hot Springs, Arkansas. The pampering was deluxe, the atmosphere was welcoming, but still private and the gardens and birdfeeders right outside our balcony window were the icing on the cake (see above regarding focused leaders).

Cause: Sharon’s carpool had to change hours at her job.

Effect: We purchased a 2002 Toyota Camry. We are now officially a multi-vehicle family.

Cause: Greta (6 ½ years old) in full costume at the school Christmas program

Effect: She grooved through every song. Our friends have considered taping her and submitting the video to AFV to win the $100,000 grand prize.

Cause: Decreased attention to toy sales

Effect: Sharon lost her status as a Discovery Toys Educational Consultant. Although they are still some of the best educational toys, books and games around, the event meant it was time to move on. The still in great shape toys we had around the house that the children have outgrown (some are never outgrown) were sent to our niece in California. Enjoy Liana!

Cause: Forgoing individual presents and purchasing one family gift.

Effect: Investing in family togetherness and enjoying the benefits of Wii and Wii Fit (thanks to the relatives and friends who added to our original investment).

Cause: Jesus loves us intensely

Effect: We see miracles and blessings and God’s leading all around us. We know the joy of the family of believers and the privilege of worshipping and praising God. We have the comfort of those who keep the faith when difficult times come. The reality of God’s involvement in our lives is unmistakable.

Thank you for joining us in this scientific review of 2009. Please feel free to write or call us. It has been scientifically proven, however, that we do respond quicker to emails and comments on Facebook.

Karl, Sharon, Michael, Matthew and Greta Leukert

205 E Bonham Street, Jefferson, TX 75657


Karl’s email: Sharon’s email: