Ever Thought About How God Bypassed Condemning You?

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

Ever Thought About How God Bypassed Condemning You?

In my youth I waited tables. One day after work, I found a parking ticket on my car. The guy I was dating (who later became my husband) was a cop. Now, I know what you are thinking…

“This is how he flirts?”

Yes.

Imagine if you will, that this ‘ticket’ had gotten turned in and sent through the court system and I was called before a judge. There would be two possible outcomes. First, I could be found guilty of the violation and assigned the fine. Or I could be found not guilty and released. There is NO third option of being guilty but released anyway. 

For the judicial system to work properly, this option doesn’t work. We cannot have criminals released free and clear by the courts. That would be a gross misuse of authority

Can We Solely Trust the Old Testaments Portrayal of God?

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

Can We Solely Trust the Old Testaments Portrayal of God?

I’m just really thankful for Jesus! I could mention a thousand ways in which I am thankful for Him, but one way hit me last week at a Bible study and I’ve been thinking about it since. We’ve been studying Hebrews and we got to this verse, “You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word that the blood of Abel” (Hebrews 12:23b-24).

This is how the Amplified Bible clarifies this, “And to Jesus, the Mediator (Go-between, Agent) of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood which speaks [of mercy], a better and nobler and more gracious message than the blood of Abel [which cried out for vengeance]” (Hebrews 12:24 AMP)

Abel was killed by his brother Cain. As his blood spilled on the ground it cried out to God for vengeance—then God responded (Genesis 4:10-15).

Living in the Sweet Spot of Grace & Faith

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

Living in the Sweet Spot of Grace & Faith

There are several ideas in the Bible that work in partnership. If you look at them separately, without the balance of working together it is easy to get into error. I believe grace and faith is a perfect example of this. It is easy to fall heavily to one side or the other. Many claim to ‘error on the side of grace’ while others boast of being ‘faith people’. Admittedly I do this myself, (although I would claim to be heavily vested in both camps), but still looking at them as very separate things—here’s an idea, they are not exclusive, they are meant to be used together.

There is a balance between grace and faith; when realized you exist in a sweet spot of unity with the Lord.

“True faith is not something we do to gain a response from God; but true faith is our positive response to what God has already done by grace” Andrew Wommack.

The Shocking Truth about Grace

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

The Shocking Truth about Grace

How to End the Cheap Grace Argument Once For All!

I recently listened in on a conversation where the message of grace was attacked. It was called cheap and accused of ruining the [American] church by devaluing obedience to the commandments—What? Somehow in this mindset, the message of grace gives a license to sin rather than bringing believers into a full revelation of the finished work of the cross.

Here’s the shocking truth about grace—It Is NOT Cheap!

How can believers ever call the grace of God cheap! In this conversation more weight was given to recognizing the condition of being a sinner and obedience to the Commandments than was given to Jesus for solving the problem. To me, this logic is cheap grace! The argument was that Paul called himself the chief of sinners so we too must recognize it and wear it as a badge (1 Tim. 1:15). Brothers and sisters this should not be!

7 Little-Known Factors That Could Affect Your Faith

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

7 Little-Known Factors That Could Affect Your Faith

What Abraham Can Teach Us about Faith & Patience

Lately, I’ve been mulling over the ins and outs of faith. Not the label we give ourselves to describe our belief systems. Rather the substance of the unseen that procures promises from God

Faith is defined by the author of Hebrews as “...the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]” (Heb. 11:1 AMP)

So in this we see that faith is a substance or the title deed to the things we both hope for and are convinced of. And yet so many times we are in this flux of longing and waiting for the things that we both have ownership to and are completely persuaded of. 

Is there a disconnect? Or is this merely part of the path that faith takes as we walk it out?

Warning: Preaching is Not the Performance of an Hour

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

Warning: Preaching is Not the Performance of an Hour

I had an opportunity to present ideas on cultivating the discipline of Bible study recently at a weekend retreat. I only had fifteen minutes to present so I worked really hard on being succinct which meant cutting five points down to the one main thing with ways to immediately apply. I love to teach, almost as much as I love to write, but this exercise on whittling down my sermon to fit within the time constraints was challenging, but proved effective.

The next day, the retreat organizer thanked me for presenting and commented that what I shared was simple and straightforward, what everyone needed to hear. My ego would have loved to hear that I had wowed them or that it was full of wisdom but in reality this is one of the best compliments a Bible teacher could receive. A simple and straightforward message from the Word of God makes it accessible and understandable.

Top 5 Takeaways from the Global Leadership Summit—Plus A Bonus!

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

Top 5 Takeaways From the Global Leadership Summit—Plus A Bonus!

This past week I, like 90,000 other leaders, spent Thursday and Friday participating in the Global Leadership Summit. The Summit is a two-day event that is telecast live from Willow Creek’s campus near Chicago. They bring in amazing speakers, both within the body of Christ and also leadership experts and social scientists. It was a great event. 

Because of the flux of information during these two days, I really tried to take minimum notes and just be present to listen. Fortunately, I have this luxury as a coworker is an amazing note taker, so I knew I’d have the margin to go back and access his notes. (You can get them too; click here!) Thanks @BenInIowa

After it was over, I tried to boil everything down to bite-sized takeaways to immediately apply— So here they are…

#1—The highest calling of leadership

“The highest calling of leadership is to unlock the untapped, unlimited potential of others”  Carly Fiorina (@CarlyFiorina).

How to Understand the Bible! 5 Ideas That Really Work

Written by Juli Camarin on . Posted in Topical

How to Understand the Bible! 5 Ideas That Really Work

God places incredible value on His Word, In fact, the greatest gift God gave us outside of Jesus was the scriptures. He places incredible value on the Word that was written, preserved and passed down to us. It says in the Psalms, “You have exalted above all else Your name and Your word and You have magnified Your word above all Your name!” (Psalm 138:2b AMP). We know God values His word because He magnifies it above the His name, and if it’s this important to Him; it needs to be this important to us.

But what happens when we let our insecurities about the Bible keep us from delving into it? Here’s five ways in which I’ve found helpful to make the Word of God an integral part of my life.

None of These Will Surprise You!