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Showing posts from September, 2014

FUEL FOR CHRIST-FOLLOWING

In the movieCity Slickers, Curly (Jack Palance) tells Mitch (Billy Crystal) that the secret of happiness is found in one thing. Mitch asks, "What's the one thing?" Curly says, "You have to find that out for yourself." 

Paul defined the one thing for himself: "But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:13-14)
His "one thing" was winning the prize — the prize of knowing and being known by Jesus. This goal was the driving force behind all that he did.
A subtle, but crucial, distinction is this. Paul wasn't driven by the idea of success in ministry, of building growing congregations, of reaching unchurched people with the gospel. He did these things — and he did them well — but he was driven first by the desire to know Jesus. His devotional life, not his ambition, fueled his ministry. 
Here…

YOUR HEART’S DESIRE

Ben Stein once said, "The first step to getting the things you want out of life is to ”Decide what you want." This sounds obvious, but the fact of the matter is that many folks can't articulate what they want, beyond some vague desire to "be happy." 

When we invest time thinking about what we really want, we learn some things. First, we learn that we don't really want what we think we want — at least not enough to do something about it. We don't want to be healthy enough to give up unhealthy food; we don't want a good family life enough to give up drinking; we don't want to change the world enough to sacrifice a little money. We also learn that many of our wants are in conflict with one another. We want financial peace but we also want to spend ourselves silly according to our whims; we want to be leaders but we also want to be the most popular; we want to be spiritual but we also want to hold on to our favorite sins.
David wrote, "Take deligh…

KEEP IT REAL

Have you ever heard the statement that once you decide to follow Jesus, your life makes this dramatic turn for the better, a turn that includes being “blessed” and having everything “work out” for you. Now don’t get me wrong, I think following Jesus is the very best way to live your life, the way we were created by God to live. I just struggle with this image of being a Christian that tells people that once they “come to Jesus” everything just seems to “work,” everything just gets better and better. Where did we get these notions about God?

This is not the truth that the Bible presents. The truth is the Bible is filled with people who chose to follow God, only to see their lives not get better, but in fact get worse. The truth is the Bible is filled with people who cried out to God from the depths of their soul, “Where are you, God?” “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from the words of my groaning? My God, I cry out by day, but you do n…

HIS CHALLENGE

The Social Media sites have gone viral with the recent Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) “Ice Bucket Challenge.”It has at the least put ALS on the map for awareness to this disease and raised in excess of $100 million for research.I received an ALS challenge and was reluctant at first but considering the sources of the challenge — a Christian Brother, Chris, and my wife, Dawn (whose uncle died of ALS) — I put myself under the ice cold bucket and accepted the challenge.

I’ve heard it said, "I would rather attempt something great and fail than attempt nothing and succeed." What challenge is God placing in your heart? Don't sit back and wait for someone else to make a difference when you can be that person. The world doesn't need more armchair quarterbacks; the world needs people like you to get in the arena and give it everything you can! 
President Theodore Roosevelt once said:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled o…

RE-ESTABLISH JOY

Why do you involve yourself with sin? Hasn’t it cost you enough already? You’ve been burned by it before, so why do you still play with fire?What are you thinking when you find yourself again in the grip of its deadly jaws—does that make you want to take a second shot at it? Have you not had enough of that old sneaky-snake? Hasn’t he stabbed his poisonous fangs into you one too many times already? What kind of thrill is there in jumping into the snake pit?Don’t get mad at me for bringing up your sinfulness!It’s foolish to think of it as fun! Did sin ever produce real lasting pleasure? Have you found lasting satisfaction in it? If so, go back to your old ways, and wear that ball and chain again, if it makes you happy.

In as much as sin has never given you what it promised to deliver—only to deceive you with lies—don’t seek a second chance at being snared by the crafty Deceiver. Because, you doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is Albert Einstein’s de…