Friday, December 2, 2011

Question: "Why Do You Follow Jesus?"

Liz over at asked me the following question: "Why do you follow Jesus?"

Hmm. Good question. Thanks for asking! Here are just a few of my thoughts, which I gathered quickly before getting the kids up for school today:

Answer: The question presupposes that I am, in fact, following Jesus - and all that entails....Jesus Himself said that "the one who loves [Him] will keep [His] commandments" (John 14:21). Since none of us do that perfectly, and I least of all, following Jesus demands and understanding of repentance and grace that does not come naturally to my prideful, self-sufficient nature.

And yet, I cannot live without Him, and would not want to.

So, what are my reasons for following Him?

1.) He is God. (Romans 9:5). The deity of Jesus Christ, an indisputable biblical truth, means that He is the highest authority in the universe - He is the absolute sovereign Ruler. His Kingdom is not a democracy.

2.) Axiomatically, I am His slave. (1 Cor. 4:1). I do not "make" Jesus Lord; He already IS Lord. My obligation is to submit to His loving, gracious, and absolute authority.

3.) His unbelievable kindness is what led me to repentance (Romans 2:4). Fear of God is indeed the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10), but craven fear is not what turned my heart to Him.

4.) He is patient with me (Romans 2:4). Why would One so perfect and impeccably holy condescend to be patient with one as stubborn and corrupt as I? How can I not respond to Him?

5.) He predestined me in love to be His adopted child (Ephesians 1:5). I cannot fathom why God would choose me as His own, but I know that it had nothing to do with anything He saw in me (Eph. 2:8-9).

6.) He is gentle and humble in heart (Matthew 11:29). The King of the Universe is gentle and humble...and He chose me to belong to Him. Unbelievable.

7.) He loved me first (1 John 4:19). I will never understand why Jesus would love me, but I know this is true. Not responding to Him is inconceivable.

8.) He really did die for me personally (Galatians 2:20). This fact is unthinkable to the unregenerate mind, and when I stop to consider what the perfect and loving Son of God went through on my behalf, the unrepented sin I am carrying around causes me deep shame. Following Him demands that I see my sin for what it is, and what it actually cost Him.

9.) I know that Jesus loves me, even when I fail to follow Him, because He even loves those who turn away (Mark 10:21) and He restores our relationship each and every time I repent He forgives me (Luke 17:4; Jesus never commands us to do something He does not do Himself).

10.) Jesus loved children (Matt. 19:14), and they loved Him. Kids are not naturally drawn to someone unpleasant to be around.

11.) He is compassionate, even on the most disgraceful and shameful situations (John 8:11; Luke 8:40 ff.)

12.) He feels affection toward us (Philippians 1:3-4), which He enables us to have for one another. He is not cold nor indifferent.

13.) He wants us to be with Him in His Kingdom, eternally happy beyond what we could ask or imagine (John 14:3).

14.) He enables me to change, through the power of the Holy Spirit, in order to live a life truly pleasing to Him (Ephesians 4:21-25).

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Interview with Ashlie Kyles of Bella Ministries

Link to Bellanomics here


In September, I had the opportunity to do a Q&A with Marie Notcheva, the author of "Redeemed from the Pit: Biblical Repentance and Restoration from the Bondage of Eating Disorders". She has been studying Biblical Counseling since 2009, and is near the completion of the certification process with the NANC (National Association of Nouthetic Counselors). She counsels Christian women in person, and occasionally by e-mail, who struggle with anorexia, bulimia, and food-related bondages. Please take a moment to learn more about her ministry...

Q: What was the inspiration for starting this organization?
A: I was anorexic and bulimic for 17 years. God graciously granted me repentance and freedom. I began writing about my journey, in the hopes it would help others with similar struggles.

Q: Who can benefit from you or the use of your organization?
A: Christian women struggling with eating disorders, as well as counselors and those close to them trying to help according to biblical principles. My book goes into what the Bible says about life-dominating sin in general, as well as what God expects us to do (and how to renew our mind) as He frees us. Many people do not think of eating disordered behavior as being sinful, but God wants us to walk in freedom and holiness!

Q: What programs, products or services do you offer to the community?

A: My book, which was forewarded by bestselling author and speaker Martha Peace, can be purchased at I also blog at: I counsel (free of charge) under the authority of my local church in Massachusetts.

Q: What advice would you offer to someone interested in starting or getting involved with your type of business/organization?
A: Biblical counselors are desperately needed in this age of man-centered thinking and Godless psychology (and "Christian" programs that are based on psychological counseling constructs). Study and do the training necessary to minister the Scriptures to hurting people! If your church does not offer a biblical counseling program, suggest starting one.

Q: Where are your services offered (local, national, international)?
A: My book is available for order online. I counsel in Massachusetts, but I have received e-mails from women all over the world. I respond to each one personally and refer her to a local biblical counselor in her area (where possible).

Q: What else would you like us to know about you or your organization?
A: My testimony and an interview with me about how I overcame eating disorders in God's strength will appear on The 700 Club within a few months. Through speaking and writing, I hope to be a blessing and a light to those struggling in the pit of anorexia and bulimia. You are not alone!

Bellanomics, LLC personally thanks Marie Notcheva for taking the time out to answer a few questions. You can read here for the publisher's description of Marie's book, including the foreword written by Martha Peace: