Thursday 7.18.13

We have started a Stop the Slop challenge.  We all fall into the maintenance phase after we have hit our goal and sometimes lose sight of what our goal is.  Why do we do these challenges and sometimes really struggle with them?  Self control is something that most people struggle with in some area in their life. Before I started doing CrossFit,  I lacked self-control in eating and exercising. My portions were about two plate sizes too big. My food was not the best choices either.  To take time to exercise seemed silly. I had too many “other” things to do that took priority. When I realized my weight was at an all time high and my energy was at an all time low, I had to do something. I was miserable and had no one to blame but myself. I had to pray for self-control.  Self-control and discipline carries over in other aspects of our life and leads us to a better mental and physical state.  If we seek help with something in our life, ask the Father. He loves His children and wants us to be a tree that bears fruit. What are some of your struggles? Maybe it is patience or faithfulness. Whatever it might be, lay it before the Lord and He will help you.  Self-control and discipline carries over in other aspects of our life and leads us to a better mental and physical state.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

Wednesday 7.17.13

Sometimes we find our self seeking out a different path in life.  There are several ways to find God’s vision for your life: Through his Word, through the conscience he has built into you, through the counsel of other godly people, and through prayer. God wants to reveal his vision for your life. Believe in his power, seek his guidance each day, and be alert to the ways that he answers you.

Because I have done what is right, I will see you. when I awake, I will be fully satisfied, for I will wee your face-to-face.
Psalm 119:18

Thursday 7.10.13

A week ago we celebrated Independence Day.  As Americans we enjoy our freedom everyday that we sometimes take it for granted because we don’t know what it would be like to not have it. As Christians we can experience that same freedom. Sin can hold us in bondage and keep us from breaking free from our strongholds. Satan would love for us to think that we could never overcome. He likes to take advantage of our circumstances and use them for his good. Don’t let him. We can overcome anything in our past, present and future with Christ.

“They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb
and by the word of their testimony;
they did not love their lives so much
as to shrink from death.
Therefore rejoice, you heavens
and you who dwell in them!
But woe to the earth and the sea,
because the devil has gone down to you.
He is filled with fury,
because he knows that his time is short.”

Revelation 12:11-12

Wednesday 7.9.13

This poem is a wonderful reminder to be thankful.  We all get caught up in the train of thought, If I could only change my life in some way, I would be happy.  We all have different things we would change.  Ourselves, our job, our church, our marriage, our home, our neighborhood, our car, the weather, etc…  True happiness and peace comes from the Lord.  This poem is about how we all struggle with being content with what God has given us. We always want something different. If we are not careful we will miss out on realizing the gift of life that lays out before us, our life, our blessings. Not always wanting something else.  Think about it and ask God to help you be content and see how much you have.

It was spring, but it was summer I wanted,
Those warm days of the great outdoors.
Then it was summer and it was fall I wanted
The colorful leaves and the cool dry air.
It was fall and it was winter I wanted.
The beautiful snow and the holiday season.
And then it was winter and it was spring I wanted.
The warmth and blossoming of nature.
I was a child but it was adulthood I wanted, the freedom and the respect.
I was 20 but it was 30 I wanted. To be mature and sophisticated.
And I was middle aged but it was 20 I wanted, the youth and the free spirit.
I was retired but it was middle aged I wanted.
That presence of mind without limitations.
My life was over and I never got what I wanted.

“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.” Philippians 4:12

Tuesday 7.8.13

Does life seem so hard sometimes, you just want to give up.  It is hard to understand why things happen sometimes.  We all have times in our life that are really hard and sometimes we get a break.  Our trials bring us closer to the Lord and he uses that time to mold us and makes us after his will.  What is the will of God?  No one can answer that but him and he tells us through his word.  He is more concerned about our spiritual needs than any need we have on this earth.  1 Timothy 2:6a, who gave himself as a ransom for all people.  He suffered and died so that we could receive him and live eternally.  We have a hard time grasping that concept because none of us here on earth know what eternal is.  We will have victory in the storms of life if we love, trust and obey Christ.

 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Galatians 6:9

Thursday 6.27.13

If God asked you what you wished for, what would it be?  Most people would answer in accordance to earthly matters.  Money, homes, health,etc..  In 2 Kings 3:5, God asked Solomon what he wished for.  Solomon was David and Bathsheba’s son.  After David died he became king.  Solomon’s answer to God’s question was, “give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?”  Because he asked this for this instead of a long life and riches, God blessed him richly.  He became known as the wisest man ever.  He spoke three thousand wise sayings and these are called Proverbs which is recorded in the Bible.  But then Solomon did something that we often do, he let his guard down.  When he did this he made some really bad choices.  His kingdom was eventually taken away because he didn’t keep the Lord’s commands. God can supply us with discernment when we are looking for it and staying close to him.  But, when we allow our mind to justify our choices that depart from the truth and we risk losing our blessings.

Do not make friends with a hot-tempered person,
do not associate with one easily angered,
or you may learn their ways
and get yourself ensnared.
Proverbs 22:24-25

Monday 6.24.13

Fear is a very crippling thing.  It keeps us from growing into the person that God wants us to be.  If we allow Satan to penetrate our mind with lies, we fall into despair.  But, if we are like the solider described in Ephesians 6:17, Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.  We can protect our minds and train our brain to extinguish anything that Satan tries to come against us with.  We are in a fight everyday.  The only protection is to stay close to the Lord.  In John 14:6, Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.  God is greater and has full authority.  Never doubt his power to overcome the things that we cannot.

Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient.
Ephesians 5:6

Thursday 6.20.13

Yesterday we took some time at the gym to reevaluate our goals.  What are we working for?  What drives us to show up everyday?  Some people come because they want to be stronger.  Some people come because they want to be healthier.  Maybe they have something they are training for. Going to the army, playing a college sport, being healthy for our kids, etc.  We have a variety of people and a variety of reasons to come.  When does it become more than just a workout?  It becomes pushing yourself outside your comfort zone to do the impossible.  When we realize we can accomplish these things in the gym, we carry it out in other aspects of our life.  If we never press our self to become more than we won’t.  In Proverbs 14:23, All hard work brings a profit.  So the question is, what are we working for?  What is our goal?  What were we created for?  We all have a purpose to benefit the kingdom of God.  Are we working towards that or not?

In Ephesians 6:10, It says,”Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.”  It says to be strong, not weak.  We have to build our strength spiritually by staying in constant communion with the Lord and reading His word. We will reap the benefits of being strengthened everyday by the truth and having the armor of God to stand against the devil and his schemes.

Surely he says this for us, doesn’t he? Yes, this was written for us, because whoever plows and threshes should be able to do so in the hope of sharing in the harvest.  1 Corinthians 9:10

Monday 5.27.13

Memorial Day is a United States Federal Holiday which occurs every year on the final Monday of May.  Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces.  We are very grateful for the sacrifice that these men and women made for our country and our freedom.  It is something we take for granted because we have never experienced to not have freedom. Freedom to go to school, church, work, raise a family, etc..

It is in debate rather our country was founded on Christianity.  Granted, God is not mentioned in the Constitution, but He is mentioned in every major document leading up to the final wording of the Constitution. Our founding fathers that framed the constitution made reference to the Lord.  For example, this was part of Benjamin Franklin speech in 1787.

I have lived, Sir, a long time and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth — that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings that “except the Lord build they labor in vain that build it.” I firmly believe this; and I also believe that without his concurring aid we shall succeed in this political building no better than the Builders of Babel: We shall be divided by our little partial local interests; our projects will be confounded, and we ourselves shall be become a reproach and a bye word down to future age. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing Governments by Human Wisdom, and leave it to chance, war, and conquest.

On Memorial Day, take the time to reflect on the sacrifices that were made.  Thank the Lord that we live in a country that was founded by men that believed in him and his word.

 “Posterity! You will never know how much it cost the present Generation to preserve your Freedom! I hope you will make good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven, that I ever took half the Pains to preserve it.”
~John Adams

For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.   Galatians5:13


Sunday 8.26.13

Over the weekend, many graduations took place.  The two we attended in our county, the graduates gave reference to the Lord in their speeches and prayers.  We attended one outside of town where there was no prayer and no mention of the Lord.  The school was larger than most of our nearby colleges and there were many accomplishments among the 700 seniors. Except that in larger cities there is a restriction of acknowledging the Lord.   I realized the our little town of Murphy and Hiawassee Dam graduates had a better understanding of what real success is.  In Matthew 6:33, But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

The stress of what you want to do with your life can be confusing.  Some people make their choice based on what their salary would be.  Some people make their decision based on what they enjoy doing.  We are all given a talent, a gift.  Take time to pray about your future and make sure it is something you love.

For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
Matthew 16:26