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Showing posts from 2009

Lord, I'm waiting

What is it that you are waiting for right now in your life? A child? A wife or a husband? A job? Restored health? Forgiveness? A new beginning? Someone in your family to turn from their sin and come to the Lord? Reconciliation with a family member? Do you sometimes come to the Father and want to know how long or ask Him why he makes the people he loves wait too long? Not everyone handles waiting the same way. Sarah could not wait--she thought the Lord was taking too long and she took matters into her own hands. Do you do that? Peter rebuked Jesus about going to Jerusalem and fulfilling the plan that the Father had for his Son. He did not pick up on the word “resurrection” did he? He had to wait until Christ was crucified to get the full meaning of the reason - and the importance of God’s timeline.
Look at David -- he learned to wait in a beautiful and in a strong way. He shows us how to wait with courage. Psalm 27:13-14 --Wait for the Lord, be strong and let your hea…

Guidelines are there for a reason

Anyone who has participated in a Step Study or a small group through Celebrate Recovery has heard the five small-group guidelines. They’re supposed to be read aloud before each meeting starts, just to remind everyone or to inform any newcomers.

Most of the guidelines are obvious and make perfect sense on the first reading. Anonymity is vital and as people who are submitting to God as our Higher Power, we should realize that we are in no more a position to “fix” each other than we are to “fix” ourselves.

There’s one guideline that puzzled and even annoyed me at first, that pesky no. 2.
“There is NO cross talk. Cross talk is when two individuals engage in conversation excluding all others. Each person is free to express his or her feelings without interruptions.”

At first I really didn’t understand the guideline. “Did they seriously need to tell us not to talk to each other while someone was sharing?,” was my thought.

But as the guideline was explained further, I better understood. We ar…

Flame of fire

Psalm 141:1-10
A psalm of David.
1 O LORD, I call to you; come quickly to me.
Hear my voice when I call to you.
2 May my prayer be set before you like incense;
may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.

3 Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD;
keep watch over the door of my lips.

4 Let not my heart be drawn to what is evil,
to take part in wicked deeds
with men who are evildoers;
let me not eat of their delicacies.

5 Let a righteous man [a] strike me—it is a kindness;
let him rebuke me—it is oil on my head.
My head will not refuse it.
Yet my prayer is ever against the deeds of evildoers;

6 their rulers will be thrown down from the cliffs,
and the wicked will learn that my words were well spoken.

7 They will say, "As one plows and breaks up the earth,
so our bones have been scattered at the mouth of the grave. [b] "

8 But my eyes are fixed on you, O Sovereign LORD;
in you I take refuge—do not give me over to death.

9 Keep me from the snares they have laid for me…

God Is With Us

The sign: Immanuel here predicted has come to earth, ascended to heaven and will come again. Yet through his spirit, he is continually here - God is with us. At this time of the year, our most wonderful beloved gift of all is Jesus Christ. This has been one my favorite things to read as I think about the precious gift and what the scripture tell about him:
Genesis- Jesus is the ram at Abraham’s altar
Exodus - He is the pass over lamb
Leviticus - He is the High Priest
Numbers - The Cloud by day and Pillar of Fire by night
Deuteronomy - He is the City of our Refuge
Joshua - The Scarlet Thread out Rehab’s window
Judges - Our Righteous Judge Ruth - Our Kinsman Redeemer
I & II Samuel - Our Trusted Prophet
Kings and Chronicles - He is our Reigning King
Ezra _ The Faithful Scribe
Nehemiah - He is the Rebuilder of everything broken
Esther - Mordecai - Sitting Faithful at the gate
Job - He is our Redeemer that liveth
Psalms - He is the Goo…

Giving: defined by Jesus

From Monica- Encourager Coach-
As Believers, We Are God’s Gift to Jesus – What a Blessed Thought!!!
In my study of the apostle John this year in Bible Study Fellowship, I was amazed when I learned that I’m actually a gift from Father God to my Lord, His Son, Jesus… In this “season of giving” I thought how appropriate to dwell on that idea. Just like faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is a gift to us, we’re also gifts to Him … gifts that are far more precious than gold, or silver, and sweeter than honey (like it says in Psalm 19). Below is an excerpt of some really excellent commentary taken from www.biblegateway.com. It also speaks of how we are always working out our salvation. I love knowing that He who sovereign to save us is certainly sovereign over our sanctification, too… Thank the good Lord for His work in us, Amen! He IS our perfect model of discipleship. Hope you enjoy reading this…
John 6:35-40 (New International Version)
Jesus the Bread of Life
35Then Jesus declared, "I…

Praying the Scriptures

Has your heart been heavy this week? Some have lost a job, some have been ill and some have been laid off their job, some are struggling financially and are having other issues in their lives. Last week it broke my heart to hear some of the things that people had told me. All I could think about was encouraging them to stand firm in their faith and lay it before the feet of the Lord. I encouraged them to take a chapter of scripture and to pray it back to the Lord as worship to him. It is sometimes hard to worship when there are so many tough things going on. I followed my own advice and looked at Psalm 119. When you worship the Most High God, we thank him for who he is and what he has done for us. It also reaffirms his promises and loving care for us. I just wanted to share with you what I came up with - God is Mighty--thank him for helping us, giving us his word and walking with us through whatever it is we are going through today. He is Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnipr…

How does unbelief contribute to the need I feel for pornography?

How does unbelief contribute to the need I feel for pornography?
Feeling the need for sexual titillation is like getting hungry when you haven't had anything to eat for a day. It's as natural as the day is long.

Sex is a desire that rises up within the body and is there. We're just wired for it, men and women (women differently, but not without it). And it wasn't belief or unbelief that made that desire happen. It was hormones that made that happen.

So the first answer to the question, "How does unbelief relate to my sense of need?" is that it doesn't have anything to do with the sense of want or desire. Those desires are just there like your hunger for a steak or your tiredness and desire for sleep.

Now when the question is, What do you do with it?, there unbelief has everything to do with whether you need pornography. I said "titillation" earlier, referring to some kind of sexual feeling—that's natural. But now, if you go towards pornography t…

Are you spiritually hungry?

If you're not choosing to spend regular time with God, then you're choosing to die spiritually.
In many cultures, life is centered around food. Very few people in the western world would go for more than 10 or 12 hours without food or drink. Besides the fact that food is built into culture, doing so would make one very hungry.

Many people wouldn't dare going physically hungry; yet they starve themselves spiritually. If you ate food only once a week, you'd certainly die of starvation and malnutrition. Yet countless Christians do exactly that in their spiritual lives.

It is no wonder that Jesus called himself the bread of life (John 6:35). In order to grow spiritually, you must feed on spiritual food -- God's word.

Have the attitude found in Isaiah 26:8: Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts. Make it your desire to know God better.

When you regularly spend time with God -- praying, seeking him, and s…

The Adversary

Have you ever been involved in doing something, when all of a sudden something pops into your head and you think” where did that come from.? Or have you ever started thinking about certain things in your life or things that have recently happened to you and those voices in your head start saying, worthless, stupid, dumb, unlovable, I am not good enough or there is nothing in me that God or anyone else finds good about me?” What about a subtle thought that gets you to thinking and you know it is not right thinking and it leads you to do something you will be deeply sorry for or regret? I Peter 5:8-9--your adversary the Devil is as a roaring lion walking about, seeking those whom he may devour. Over the past weeks I have been more aware of this than usual. As I have visited with several friends this week, they have spoken things about themselves to me that are out and out lies about themselves. The evil one has been prowling around in the dark looking for ways to use his wiles …

Life is not a jar of pickles

Have you ever tried to open a new jar of pickles (or peanut butter!) by yourself only to get frustrated, irritated and defeated?

If you’re anything like me, you try opening the jar using all so-called home remedies. First, your bare hands then with a towel or one of those rubber grippers that are designed for such a purpose. I usually then try running the neck of the glass jar under hot water to help it pop off easier (no idea why this supposedly works, sometimes it’s a miracle cure, sometimes it’s not).

When all the known tricks fail, we usually hand over the offending jar to our spouse or even child to attempt to open. “I give up, you try,” is what I usually say. Then when the other person manages to open the jar, we are grateful but also can’t help but feel like it was a team effort. “I loosened it for you!”

In lesson 15 of the Step Study, we talk about VICTORY:

Voluntarily submit (to every change God wants to make)
Identify which character defects need worked on first
Change your min…

Sandpaper People

I bet that almost everyone has used a sheet of sandpaper at one time or another. Sandpaper has that grit on it that is used to remove small amounts of material on surfaces that usually take something off or make it smoother. I have had difficult people in my life and I call them my “sandpaper people.” I bet you all have at least have one or encountered one. They are the “self righteous ones”, “the criticizer”, “the sherman tank- they run right over you”, “the know it all, “ the instigator”, “the entrapper,” “the bully,” “ fault finding critics,” “ the excuse giver,” and “ the blabber mouths.” Any of these sound familiar to you? I once heard an old wives tale -- the things that you find so abrasive about these people may be some of the same traits that you might have. How do you respond and react to these people? This week I have pondered on why we encounter them. Does God use these people to “grate” on us for a reason? One of the things that I thought about was Eph.6:18 -- …

God Wants You To Know

On this day, God wants you to know...
... that faith is exactly what it takes to get through uncertainty. Faith is not necessary when you know how things are going to work out, - that's knowledge. It's in the time of unknowing that having faith is what sees you through to the other side. Faith is what gives you strength. Faith is that light in your heart that keeps on shining even when it's all darkness outside. Now is the time to keep that faith alive!
From "God Wants You To Know"

WWJD

I have heard the phrase WWJD (What would Jesus do) and while on the surface that is a good model to keep us on the right track, if we do it just as a modification of our behavior we are going to slip back into old ways. When we look at the hope of the return of Christ, it should motivsate us to live for Him. This means being mentally alert, thinking clearly in our recovery walk, maintain disipline, exercising self control regularly, and stay focused and looking forward.
I have to constantly ask myself, am I ready to meet Christ? Am I living as His obedient child? or am I doing it Rodney's way?
Isnt it great to know He is a God of mercy and justice who cares personally for each of His followers. He does expect us to imitate Him by following His high moral standards and by being both merciful and just. Peter's words from the book of 1 Peter 1 means that all parts of our lives and character should be in the process of becoming conformed both inwardly and outwardly to God's s…

Dear Lord: Thank You!

Thanksgiving is that time when families get together, there is plenty of food, football and naps. The women have a great time of visiting and then comes the cleanup. Then comes that feeling of “ Oh I ate too much, and I don’t want to see any turkey for a long time.” In most homes this is usually a tradition. Exodus 12:14, speaks of a tradition of the Passover that was to be held every year. Don’t you think that God endorses traditions especially if they have spiritual significance? Traditions promote togetherness and help us to remember all that God has done for us. One of the greatest traditions ( inheritance) that we can leave our family and succeeding generations is a tradition of frequently reminding them of God’s blessings, care, provision, and presence in our lives. Duet. 4:9 - Watch out be very careful never forget what you have seen what the Lord has done for you -- do not let these things escape from your mind as long as you live. Pass them on to your children an…

Watch...

Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny. - Frank Outlaw

Thankfulness

I AM THANKFUL:
FOR THE WIFE
WHO SAYS IT'S HOT DOGS TONIGHT, BECAUSE SHE IS HOME WITH ME,
AND NOT OUT WITH SOMEONE ELSE.

FOR THE HUSBAND
WHO IS ON THE SOFA BEING A COUCH POTATO, BECAUSE HE IS HOME WITH ME
AND NOT OUT AT THE BARS.

FOR THE TEENAGER
WHO IS COMPLAINING ABOUT DOING DISHES BECAUSE IT MEANS SHE IS AT HOME, NOT ON THE STREETS.

FOR THE TAXES I PAY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM EMPLOYED .

FOR THE MESS TO CLEAN AFTER A PARTY
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE BEEN SURROUNDED BY FRIENDS.

FOR THE CLOTHES THAT FIT A LITTLE TOO SNUG
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE ENOUGH TO EAT.

FOR MY SHADOW THAT WATCHES ME WORK
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM OUT IN THE SUNSHINE

FOR A LAWN THAT NEEDS MOWING,
WINDOWS THAT NEED CLEANING,
AND GUTTERS THAT NEED FIXING
BECAUSE IT MEANS I HAVE A HOME

FOR ALL THE COMPLAINING
I HEAR ABOUT THE GOVERNMENT
BECAUSE IT MEANS WE HAVE FREEDOM OF SPEECH.

FOR THE PARKING SPOT
I FIND AT THE FAR END OF THE PARKING LOT
BECAUSE IT MEANS I AM CAPABLE OF WALKING
AND I HAVE BEEN BLESSED WITH TRANSPORTATI…

Who made this river?

There are prophecies dealing with Egypt's judgement in the Old Testament. Egypt had great gifts and blessings. The Nile was their pride and joy and rather than thanking God for what they had been given, they claimed "the Nile is mine, I made it." Now before we judge the Egyptians for such silliness, we have to think about what we do in our life. We might say things like, "This house is mine", I built this church, ministry, business, organization or reputation from the ground up". OR "I brought myself to the place I am today on my own." "I raised my kids the right way and put them through college" Yikes!
Sometimes we take for granted what God has blessed us with thinking we did it ourselves. These kind of statements reveal our pride and where our heart is. There is no denying that we put forth a lot of hard work and effort as we should in life, but God provided the resources, abilities, energy, and opportunities to make it all happen. In…

Key Chain of Recovery

A few months ago, I picked up two more Celebrate Recovery chips. One was a 30-day chip for my original issue and the other was for a secondary issue that I discovered in my life during the initial stages of my recovery.

I choose to keep my CR chips on my key chain, both as a reminder but also, quite frankly, so I don't lose them. When I tried to put these two new chips on my chain, they simply wouldn't go on. I started to feel a small amount of despair but I was determined to keep the chips and keep them in that spot. That's when I started analyzing why they wouldn't go on. It wasn't because I couldn't figure it out, it was because I had too many things on the chain.

So I started looking at what all I had on there. What I found surprised me. I had: two keys to where I used to live; a key to my parents' house two states away (that don’t even work anymore because the locks have been changed); a key to some friends’ house that again, don’t work because they ha…

Milky Toast?

I read this passage by John Eldredge from his book Fathered by God in one of my devotional readings today. It has challenged my, what might be called my milk-toasty, view of God today, thought I would pass it on… Male Encourager Coach CR NWA

The Spirit Of The Lord Came Upon Him
11/08/2009

The Philistines went up and camped in Judah, spreading out near Lehi. The men of Judah asked, “Why have you come to fight us?” “We have come to take Samson prisoner,” they answered, “to do to him as he did to us.” Then three thousand men from Judah went down to the cave in the rock of Etam and said to Samson, “Don’t you realize that the Philistines are rulers over us? What have you done to us?” He answered, “I merely did to them what they did to me.” They said to him, “We’ve come to tie you up and hand you over to the Philistines.” Samson said, “Swear to me that you won’t kill me yourselves.” “Agreed,” they answered. “We will only tie you up and hand you over to them. We will not kill you.” So they bo…

Fighting the pleasure of sin

How do you fight the pleasure of sin? I'll tell you: with another pleasure. Holiness is not attained, at least not in any lasting, life-changing way, merely through prohibitions, threats, fear, or shame-based appeals. Holiness is attained by believing in, trusting, banking on, resting in, savoring, and cherishing God's promise of a superior happiness that comes only by falling in love with Jesus. The power that the pleasures of sin exert on the human soul will ultimately be overcome only by the superior power of the pleasures of knowing and being known, loving and being loved by God in Christ. (Sam Storms, Pleasures Evermore, p. 20)

I love my job!

Have you ever heard or have you ever been responsible for saying, “ I LOVE MY JOB .’
Do you like your job? Do you do your job well because your heart belongs to Jesus?
Is your work your worship? Do you have a high view of your work? Have your ever thought of your work an act of worship to the Most High God? Do you look at work as trivial and insignificant? Romans 12:1, Colossians 3:22-24 - Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, for the Lord and not for man.
A woman walked into a store and was looking for some jeans. She was approached by a young man with a goatee, several visible tattoos , and purple streaks in his hair. She thought “ oh man.” The young man was pleasant, helpful, kind and patient. He brought her several pairs of jeans to try on, hung up all the jeans that she tried on, and did whatever he could to serve her. His behavior indicated that he liked his job and he enjoyed serving others no matter what their opinion was of him. He was not worried…