Monday, December 28, 2009
This is a true story that someone shared with me:
That's what my father did. Dropping a fly ball may not be a big deal to most people, but if you are thirteen years old and have aspirations of the big leagues, it is a big deal. Not only was it my second error of the game, it allowed the winning run to score.
I didn't even go back to the dugout. I turned around in the middle of left field and climbed over the fence. I was halfway home when my dad found me. He didn't say a word. Just pulled over to the side of the road, leaned across the seat, and opened the passenger door. We didn 't speak. We didn't need to. We both knew the world had come to an end. When we got home, I went straight to my room, and he went straight to the kitchen. Presently he appeared in front of me with cookies and milk. He took a seat on the bed, and we broke bread together. Somewhere in the dunking of the cookies I began to realize that life and my father's love would go on. In the economy of male adolescence, if you love the guy who drops the ball, then you really love him. My skill as a baseball player didn't improve, but my confidence in Dad's love did. Dad never said a word. But he did show up. He did listen up. To bring out the best in others, do the same.
Saturday, December 19, 2009
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Friday, December 18 2009
If an enemy were insulting me, I could endure it; if a foe were raising himself against me, I could hide from him. But it is you, a man like myself, my companion, my close friend. - Psalm 55:12-13
"You will always be attacked in the place of your inheritance," said the man sitting across the breakfast table. "God has called you to bring people together and to impact other people's lives as a result of this anointing in your life. You must make sure that you seek to maintain righteousness in all of your relationships." Those words came from someone who had the wisdom and authority to speak them to me.
I have had a number of close relationships that ended in betrayal. I am very loyal to my friends and those with whom I have covenant relationships. Yet there are times that no matter how righteous you are, when someone means to betray you, he will do it. Loving those who betray you is "graduate-level Christianity." The religious community and one of His closest friends betrayed Jesus. Those who were closest to David betrayed him. Joseph's own family betrayed him. Loving our enemies cannot be accomplished by mustering it up. It can only happen when we have come to a death in ourselves so that Christ can love through us. It is truly one of those acts of identifying with the cross.
If you are a leader, you can be sure God will allow you to experience betrayal. It is one of those courses in the Kingdom that may not be required until God has seen that you have successfully passed other tests. It is the most difficult and most gut wrenching of all tests. A godly response goes against all that is in us. Our natural response is to protect, retaliate, and retain unforgiveness and bitterness. Our natural response is satan's most powerful weapon; to overcome it requires much grace from God. Ask God to build His nature in you now so that when such attacks come, you will be aware that it is a test and you will respond in righteousness.
Please pick up Mike Willard in your prayers, he is doing well but under attack and dealing with some transportation issues.
Please pick up John as our leader and friend he is always under attack because the enemy does not like what he is doing and we need to pray a special hedge of protection over him and his family.
Pick up Scuba Dave who is traveling and is covered in snow, I can just see him standing in the snow with his Yellow Krocks. May his trip be safe and enjoyable.
God Bless You all,
Friday, December 18, 2009
by Max Lucado
Does Jesus have anything to say about dealing with difficult relatives? Is there an example of Jesus bringing peace to a painful family? Yes, there is.
It may surprise you to know that Jesus had a difficult family. If your family doesn't appreciate you, take heart, neither did Jesus'.
"His family ... went to get him because they thought he was out of his mind" (Mark 3:21).
Jesus' siblings thought their brother was a lunatic. They weren't proud—they were embarrassed!
It's worth noting that he didn't try to control his family's behavior, nor did he let their behavior control his. He didn't demand that they agree with him. He didn't sulk when they insulted him. He didn't make it his mission to try to please them.
Each of us has a fantasy that our family will be like the Waltons, an expectation that our dearest friends will be our next of kin. Jesus didn't have that expectation. Look how he defined his family: "My true brother and sister and mother are those who do what God wants" (Mark 3:35).
When Jesus' brothers didn't share his convictions, he didn't try to force them. He recognized that his spiritual family could provide what his physical family didn't. If Jesus himself couldn't force his family to share his convictions, what makes you think you can force yours?
Having your family's approval is desirable but not necessary for happiness and not always possible. Jesus did not let the difficult dynamic of his family overshadow his call from God. And because he didn't, this chapter has a happy ending.
What happened to Jesus' family?
Mine with me a golden nugget hidden in a vein of the Book of Acts. "Then [the disciples] went back to Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives.... They all continued praying together with some women, including Mary the mother of Jesus, and Jesus' brothers" (Acts 1:12, 14, emphasis added).
What a change! The ones who mocked him now worship him. The ones who pitied him now pray for him. What if Jesus had disowned them? Or worse still, what if he'd suffocated his family with his demand for change?
He didn't. He instead gave them space, time, and grace. And because he did, they changed. How much did they change? One brother became an apostle (Gal. 1:19) and others became missionaries (1 Cor. 9:5).
So don't lose heart. God still changes families.
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Do you sometimes feel like there is so much on your plate that you are constantly running to get it all done? There are seasons when we need to go the extra mile and give it our all, and there are seasons to rest and rejuvenate. I love what today's scripture tells us—that during those times when it's necessary; we can run and not grow weary!
What are you facing that seems to be taking all your energy? Wait on the Lord today. Expect, look for, and hope in Him. The Bible promises that when you live with expectancy, when you stay hopeful, when you make preparations for the goodness of God, you'll rise up higher. Your strength will be renewed. In other words, you will overcome life's challenges.
You may have difficulties today, but if you can just get up every morning expecting God to turn it around, staying positive and hopeful; then God promises you will rise up higher into the strength and victory He has in store for you.
A PRAYER FOR TODAY
"Father God, thank You for giving me Your strength and power. I receive it right now, by putting my trust and hope in You. I know that with You all things are possible. In Jesus' Name. Amen"
Saturday, December 12, 2009
REAL Men Bible Study
A Prayer For Manasota
Ephesians 3: 14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name.
16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.
Ø What does it mean for Christ to dwell in my heart?
And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,
Ø How am I rooted and established in love?
18 may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,
Ø What difference does this understanding make?
19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Ø How in the world can I be filled up this way?
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,
Ø What power?
21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.
Ø What about me and my glory?
Philippians 1: 9 And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,
Ø How can love lead to knowledge and depth of insight?
10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ,
Ø I am just a man; how can any human be like this?
11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ--to the glory and praise of God.
Ø What is this fruit?? Why do I even want it?
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
And one more thing... make an effort to invite another man to join us next week. Or call someone you haven't seen in a while and let 'em know you care. The harvest is pleantiful but the workers are few.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
I thought I would share a traditional experience my family partakes in every year at Christmas. I pick a good time to settle everyone down, it's a bit tough with children at this time but, I manage.
We sit calmly as I read about the birth of Jesus located in the second chapter of the Gospel according to Luke. I prefer the King James version for this.
This is a fabulous time to remind your loved ones the true spirit of Christmas was born over two thousand year ago and witnessed by a host of angels, three wise-men, and some animals as He was in a barn setting... No hospital, clean sheets, or a call button for Mary.
The Son of all Men born to save us all, and He came with no frills and left with all our tattered souls! What a night it must have been. I bet that star shined brighter than any star we have ever seen...
"Fall on your knee's! Oh hear the Angel's voices!"
Night divine, indeed...........
Bless you brothers!
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Click here to learn more:
The Lottery is now open and will close on December 8th. It costs nothing to enter the lottery so I am asking you to put your name in and then pray about going.
This Boot Camp was a “Life Changing” experience for my and as one of my band of brothers I can not encourage you enough to attend.
Things are tight for us all financially, but the bible says:
Ask and you will receive
Seek and you will find
Knock and it will be opened to you.
If you ask God, he can open the door, it will change your life, your relationship with you wife, your relationship with your children and truly enrich your life and your ministry.
You only have a few days to enter the lottery, take a minute and do it….. If you can not work out the details you do not have to pay. As we walk as a band of brothers we are called to grow and encourage each other and this event will take you to another level.
Check out http://www.ransomedheart.com
Friday, December 4, 2009
It has been far too long and the blame is with me. In part, my circumstances are a factor but, I feel with a bit more effort, I could have posted sooner... None the less, it is nice to sit and share with you all now, just prior to celebrating the season of joy centered solely around the birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ!
I always adored the story told of the nativity and that wondrous night that took place so long ago. As a child I always won the job of setting up the nativity seen. I would recall the events in my head as I set all the figures in place. Even as young as I was I knew what happened and knew the significance and yet it didn't take hold of me through the rest of my day's like I thought it should, or did it? What I mean is, I tend to look back on my life as a sometimes waste of good opportunity, poor choices, broken-relationships, and most important, distance from God. Seeds may have been taking root. I might not have applied the levity of what transpired under that bright star, or even though knowing who He was and why He came not having more than a brief warm feeling effecting me at that moment, but perhaps He was doing something.
I have been through some very low points recently, but it dawned on me that He has stayed the course with me regardless of my recklessly abandoning Him time and time again. Later as I grew up, and thankfully became re-born in Him, I asked to be changed from the inside out. That's exactly what He intended to do, He agreed that I must be changed completely. It put a whole new perspective on things for me, that I don't have to be burdened with so much sorrow because I don't have this or that, can't be here or there... Those things are all my wants and not really what He needs for me. Heart change is what He is after, "delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart." psalm 37:4, BUT NOT BEFORE HE CHANGES IT! My very good friends who have known me all my life will tell you I wound up in a whole heep of trouble by wearing my heart on my sleeve. Maybe they were right but, I like to think that's alright, I just feel I was wearing the wrong shirt!
I know this, regardless of any pain or suffering I experience now, I know He has me right where He wants me. And I know this because I asked Him to!
"Oh Holy night, the stars are brightly shining!"
Let me be the first to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a joyous New Year!
God bless these men and their works done through them by you...
This is not going to be my typical uplifting motivating post, so sit down and get ready.
Today my friend David was found dead in a hotel room. He leaves behind a wife and triplets. God blessed him with three beautiful children and now at 9 years old they are to grow up with out a father. David has been battling drug and alcohol addictions for the past year.
My heart is broken for his children especially after what we have been learning about the importance of a father. When I first heard I was overwhelmed with grief and guilt… I had spoken to his wife a week prior and learned that she had thrown him out again because he was drinking again. I took down his phone number and had it on my desk to call him.
I had reached out to another fiend the following day to ask about a recovery house and my friend told me that unless he was ready to get help it would not work and David had been in and out of recovery homes for the past 6 months and kept relapsing and not going to his meetings.
David was one of the first people that I shared my testimony with and did little things like gave him the book the shack and the you have what it takes book from John Elderage. Many times I invited him to wildmen but he never came.
The enemy had me feeling guilty that I did not do enough, maybe that is true; would my have making a phone call to him last week change what happened?????????? What troubles me the most is that I do not know if his name is in the Lambs Book of Life and someday am I going to have to answer to him “Why did you not tell me”
Today I woke up again feeling that I could have done more, there is a lesson for me here. In my inbox today was this from Max Lucida please read it?
God Does Big Things with Small Deeds
by Max Lucado
"Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin" (Zech. 4:10 NLT).
Begin. Just begin! What seems small to you might be huge to someone else. Just ask Bohn Fawkes. During World War II, he piloted a B-17. On one mission he sustained flak from Nazi antiaircraft guns. Even though his gas tanks were hit, the plane did not explode, and Fawkes was able to land the plane.
On the morning following the raid, Fawkes asked his crew chief for the German shell. He wanted to keep a souvenir of his incredible good fortune. The crew chief explained that not just one but eleven shells had been found in the gas tanks, none of which had exploded.
Technicians opened the missiles and found them void of explosive charge. They were clean and harmless and with one exception, empty. The exception contained a carefully rolled piece of paper. On it a message had been scrawled in the Czech language. Translated, the note read: "This is all we can do for you now."
A courageous assembly-line worker was disarming bombs and scribbled the note. He couldn't end the war, but he could save one plane. He couldn't do everything, but he could do something. So he did it.
God does big things with small deeds.
Against a towering giant, a brook pebble seems futile. But God used it to topple Goliath. Compared to the tithes of the wealthy, a widow's coins seem puny. But Jesus used them to inspire us. And in contrast with sophisticated priests and powerful Roman rulers, a cross-suspended carpenter seemed nothing but a waste of life. Few Jewish leaders mourned his death. Only a handful of friends buried his body. The people turned their attention back to the temple. Why not?
What power does a buried rabbi have? We know the answer. Mustard-seed and leaven-lump power. Power to tear away death rags and push away death rocks. Power to change history. In the hands of God, small seeds grow into sheltering trees. Tiny leaven expands into nourishing loaves.
Small deeds can change the world. Sow the mustard seed. Bury the leaven lump. Make the call.
Write the check. Organize the committee.
Moses had a staff.
David had a sling.
Samson had a jawbone.
Rahab had a string.
Mary had some ointment.
Aaron had a rod.
Dorcas had a needle.
All were used by God.
What do you have?
God inhabits the tiny seed, empowers the tiny deed. He cures the common life by giving no common life, by offering no common gifts. Don't discount the smallness of your deeds.
Our Deeds do have power and I want to encourage all of you to more….. But most importantly if you are lead to help someone trust the Holy Spirit and do it. I think that what I am learning from this is that we have a short time on this planet and we will spend eternity in Heaven, make the most of your time with your family, friends, and others who do not know Jesus. Our charge is to go spread the good news.
My Message is simple; time is not on our side……
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
After Christmas, a teacher asked her young pupils how they spent their holiday away from school.
One child wrote the following:
We always used to spend the holidays with Grandma and Grandpa.
They used to live in a big brick house but Grandpa got retarded and they moved to Arizona.
Now they live in a tin box and have rocks painted green to look like grass. They ride around on their bicycles and wear name tags because they don't know who they are anymore.
They go to a building called a wreck center, but they must have got it fixed because it is all okay now - they do exercises there, but they don't do them very well.
There is a swimming pool too, but they all jump up and down in it with hats on.
At their gate, there is a doll house with a little old man sitting in it.. He watches all day so nobody can escape.
Sometimes they sneak out, and go cruising in their golf carts.
Nobody there cooks, they just eat out.
And, they eat the same thing every night --- early birds.
Some of the people can't get out past the man in the doll house.
The ones who do get out, bring food back to the wrecked center for pot luck.
My Grandma says that Grandpa worked all his life to earn his retardment and says I should work hard so I can be retarded someday too..
When I earn my retardment, I want to be the man in the doll house.
Then I will let people out, so they can visit their grandchildren.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
I hope you all had a great thanksgiving...... Mine was special because I have much to be thankfull for. My God My Friend, My family and my band of brothers....
Someone said to me that not sharing Jesus with someone is like telling them to go to hell, and that has really bothered me..... We are only here on this planet for a short period of time but we will be spending eternity with our father in heaven and for us not to help others get their names added to the lambs book of life is one of the worse things that we can do or not do....
An easy way to break the ice is to invite them to wildmen.
I am reminded of the song from smokey and the bandit... a long way to go and a short time to get there...
Monday, November 30, 2009
When God creates Eve, he calls her an ezer kenegdo. “It is not good for the man to be alone, I shall make him a [ezer kenegdo]” (Gen. 2:18 Alter). This phrase is notoriously difficult to translate. The various attempts we have in English tend to be “helper” or “companion” or the notorious “help meet.” Why are these translations so incredibly wimpy, boring, flat …disappointing? What is a help meet, anyway? What little girl dances through the house singing “One day I shall be a help meet?” Companion? A dog can be a companion. Helper? Sounds like Hamburger Helper.
Hebrew scholar Robert Alter is getting close when he translates it “sustainer beside him.” The word ezer is used only 20 other places in the entire Old Testament. And in every other instance the person being described is God himself, when you need him to come through for you desperately. God is your only hope. Your ezer. If he is not there beside you…you are dead. A better translation therefore of ezer would be “life-saver.” Kenegdo means alongside, or opposite to, a counterpart.
You see, the life God calls us to is not a safe life. Ask Joseph, Abraham, Moses, Deborah, Esther – any of the friends of God from the Old Testament. Ask Mary and Lazarus, ask Peter, James and John, ask Priscilla and Aquila – any of the friends of God in the New Testament. God calls us to a life involving frequent risks and many dangers. Why else would we need him to be our ezer? You don’t need a life-saver if your mission is couch potato. You need an ezer when your life is in constant danger.
That longing in the heart of a woman to share life together as a great adventure – that comes straight from the heart of God, who also longs for this. He does not want to be an option in our lives. He does not want to be an appendage, a tag-along. Neither does any woman. God is essential. Eve is essential. She has an irreplaceable role to play.
(Captivating , 31-33)
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Hebrews 12: 1-2;
1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
The course is already marked for us and we have a target to aim at, to be more Christlike. Lord help me to fix my eyes on You and follow your example. We will complete our mission...
One closing passage from 1 Corinthians 9: 24-26
24Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. 27No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.
Monday, November 23, 2009
..something to think about...
Washington, DC Metro Station on a cold January morning in 2007. The man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time approx. 2 thousand people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After 3 minutes a middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.
4 minutes later:
The violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk.
A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.
A 3-year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced their children to move on quickly.
The musician played continuously. Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.
He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.
No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100.
This is a true story. Joshua Bell playing incognito in the metro station was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities. The questions raised: in a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty? Do we stop to appreciate it? Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?
One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this: If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made.... How many other things are we missing?
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
This is something that we are doing for Chilis: Kids eat FREE and with things as tight as they are for some of us with kids this is a great deal.
click on this link to get coupon:
If you have any groups, churches, schools, teams and would like these to give out please let me know and I should be able to get them for you.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Our calling has three distinct stages, which we can see in the lives of many called before us, to become mature fishers of men who greatly impact God's Kingdom. First, there is the gestation period. This is the development stage of our lives. It may involve years of normal work experiences. You may be a Christian during this time, or you may be following after worldly success as a non-Christian. Paul spent years in religious and political training, persecuting believers most of his early life. Moses spent years in the court of Pharaoh and 40 years tending flocks in the desert. Jesus spent 30 years living at home and working in His father's carpentry business. However, all these years were part of their preparation.
Next is the crisis stage. Sooner or later, God calls you into relationship with Him. For many, like Paul, it comes through dramatic encounters like being knocked off a horse, blinded and spoken to personally by God. Some people are more difficult than others to reach and so require this level of crisis. This is a time when God requires major changes so that you follow Him fully. It can be a time in which God harnesses years of experience for a new life purpose. Paul's earthly experiences would be used in his calling to the religious and political leaders of his day. For Moses, the burning bush experience would begin his journey in which he would discover his ultimate calling after years of preparation. For Peter, it was his denial of Jesus three times that allowed him to face his shallow commitment to Christ. For Jesus, it was the garden of Gethsemane. These were the benchmark turning points for men who made an impact on their world.
Last is the fruit-bearing stage. In it, God's power is manifested in your life like never before. God takes all your experiences and uses them to build His Kingdom in and through your life. Your obedience to this final call results in fruitfulness you could never imagine without the long preparation process. For Abraham, it resulted in becoming the father of many nations. For Paul, it resulted in bringing the gospel to the Gentiles. And for Peter, it meant becoming the leader of the Church. For Jesus, it was salvation for the entire world.
What does God want to achieve through your life? God has a plan that is so incredible you cannot comprehend it. It requires only that you love Him and follow Him. Then you will become fishers of men like the world has never known.
The 10 most important words:
"I apologize for our mistake. Let me make it right."
When something goes wrong, most people merely want to be heard and acknowledged. So listen, apologize, then ask what you can do to make it right.
The 9 most important words:
"Thank you for your business. Please come back again."
Repeat customers cost less than new customers and are often more loyal.
The 8 most important words:
"I'm not sure, but I will find out."
It's ok if you don't know the answer; it's not ok to make the customer keep searching for it. That's your job.
The 7 most important words:
"What else can I do for you?"
Be prepared to go the extra mile, there is less competition there.
The 6 most important words:
"What is most convenient for you?"
Your customers will be pleasantly surprised when you ask what's convenient for them.
The 5 most important words:
"How may I serve you?"
This question reinforces your role in the relationship. Play that role the best you can.
The 4 most important words:
"How did we do?"
Feedback is critical! Your customers have a unique perspective and they appreciate being asked.
The 3 most important words:
"Glad you're here!"
Customers who feel welcome spend more time, more money and are more likely to return.
The 2 most important words:
Basic manners... but how often do you get thanked when you're the customer?
The MOST important word:
Become a yes person.
Friday, November 13, 2009
by Max Lucado
Water. All Noah can see is water. The evening sun sinks into it. The clouds are reflected in it. His boat is surrounded by it. Water. Water to the north. Water to the south. Water to the east. Water to the west. Water.
He sent a raven on a scouting mission; it never returned. He sent a dove. It came back shivering and spent, having found no place to roost. Then, just this morning, he tried again. With a prayer he let it go and watched until the bird was no bigger than a speck on a window.
All day he looked for the dove's return.
Now the sun is setting, and the sky is darkening, and he has come to look one final time, but all he sees is water. Water to the north. Water to the south. Water to the east. Water to the ...
You know the feeling. You have stood where Noah stood. You've known your share of floods. Flooded by sorrow at the cemetery, stress at the office, anger at the disability in your body or the inability of your spouse. You've seen the floodwater rise, and you've likely seen the sun set on your hopes as well. You've been on Noah's boat.
And you've needed what Noah needed; you've needed some hope. You're not asking for a helicopter rescue, but the sound of one would be nice. Hope doesn't promise an instant solution but rather the possibility of an eventual one. Sometimes all we need is a little hope.
That's all Noah needed. And that's all Noah received.
Here is how the Bible describes the moment: "When the dove returned to him in the evening, there in its beak was a freshly plucked olive leaf!" (Gen. 8:11 NIV).
An olive leaf. Noah would have been happy to have the bird but to have the leaf! This leaf was more than foliage; this was promise. The bird brought more than a piece of a tree; it brought hope. For isn't that what hope is? Hope is an olive leaf—evidence of dry land after a flood. Proof to the dreamer that dreaming is worth the risk.
Don't we love the olive leaves of life?
"It appears the cancer may be in remission."
"I can help you with those finances."
"We'll get through this together."
What's more, don't we love the doves that bring them?
Perhaps that's the reason so many loved Jesus.
To all the Noahs of the world, to all who search the horizon for a fleck of hope, he proclaims, "Yes!" And he comes. He comes as a dove. He comes bearing fruit from a distant land, from our future home. He comes with a leaf of hope.
Have you received yours? Don't think your ark is too isolated. Don't think your flood is too wide. Receive his hope, won't you? Receive it because you need it. Receive it so you can share it.
Love always hopes. "Love ... bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things" (1 Cor. 13:4-7 NKJV, emphasis mine).
Remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of coffee.
Professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him.
When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.
He then asked the students, if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open Areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.
The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous 'yes.'
The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar, effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.
'Now,' said the professor, as the laughter subsided, 'I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things - family, children, health, Friends, and Favorite passions. Things that if everything else was lost and only they remained, Your life would still be full.
The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, house, and car.
The sand is everything else --The small stuff. 'If you put the sand into the jar first,' He continued, there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff, you will never have room for the things that are important to you.
Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.
Play With your children.
Take time to get medical checkups.
Take your partner out to dinner.
There will always be time to clean the house and fix the disposal.
'Take care of the golf balls first -- The things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is just sand.'
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled. 'I'm glad you asked'. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.'
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Today as some of our Wildman brothers leave for Boot camp please take special time to pray PROTECTION for them and their families. We stand together against the enemy and pray for a special anointing over them during this time away.
Remember the enemy has been defeated but he is going to try to side track you, remain the course and trust in God he is faithful and most importantly is with you.
Have a great time........
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Wednesday, November 11 2009
"I will accept nothing but what my men have eaten and the share that belongs to the men who went with me-to Aner, Eshcol and Mamre. Let them have their share." Genesis 14:24
Abraham's nephew was a man named Lot. Lot was part of Abraham's household until the land on which they fed their flocks could no longer support their growing families and herds. Abraham allowed Lot to choose the land where he wanted to live. Lot chose the land of Sodom.
Afterwards, four kings invaded Sodom, and Lot's family and goods were taken into captivity. When Abraham learned of this, he immediately gathered his best fighting men and pursued the armies to free Lot and his family. He was successful in freeing Lot's family and the families of Sodom. The king of Sodom was grateful to Abraham for what he did and wanted him to keep the goods he recovered. Abraham had made a decision before the battle that he would only keep what he recovered for his nephew Lot, and goods as payment for the men who fought.
Abraham understood the principle of receiving from God. He was a man with great integrity in God. He did not want to be known as someone who became wealthy because of the kindness of a wicked king. He wanted others to know that whatever prosperity he gained was a result of the blessing from God's hand alone. Abraham understood an important principle of receiving from God.
Jesus also modeled this principle by receiving only what His Father wanted Him to receive. God's will for Jesus was to receive based on a carpenter's wage even though He was the God of the universe who had access to all things. Imagine the discipline Jesus had to have, knowing what He could have had. He upheld His own financial integrity in God. Each of us must discern what comes from the hand of God rather than the hand of man. As workplace believers, there are situations that allow us to manipulate, sweat, and toil our way to profit. There is also profit as a result of hard work done in obedience to our calling to the workplace. Knowing the difference in these two concepts is a sign of integrity before God. Only God receives glory when we receive what God wants us to receive. Are you receiving the fruit of your labor in God? Ask God to show you the difference of these two concepts for your own life.
Friday, November 6, 2009
R.E.A.L. Men Bible Study
I. Moving from Doing to Being
Ø Checklist faith
Ø Being in control
Ø God being on your team
Ø Earning your way in the faith
Ø Comparing behavior to others/grading on the curve
Matt 5: 43 "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Romans 8: 23 Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? 25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
v. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.
31 What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all--how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died--more than that, who was raised to life--is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: "For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Our position in God’s family
Ephesians 2: 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
v.13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.
v. 19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
Being (not to-do lists but innate characteristics)
Ø Filled with spirit and faith
Ø Possessed with fruit of the spirit
Ø Transformed by the renewing of the mind
Ø Alive as a good son of the heavenly Father
Ø Full of Power within that is greater than the power in the world
Ø Grace giver
Ø Truth teller
Ø Forgiveness extender
Ø Kindness sharer
Ø Goodness spreader
Ø Lover of all people
Ø Doing work heartily as unto the Lord Christ
Ø Being God’s ambassador to a dying world
Ø Defender of the faith
Ø Warrior of righteousness while being a man of peace
Ø Helper to the down trodden
Ø Passionate for justice and mercy for the helpless
Ø Good provider for the family
Ø A Christ like lover of your wife
Ø A godly father to your children
Ø A man of integrity and principle
Ø A faithful friend
Ø A doer of the word; not just a hearer
Ø Etc, etc
You have the power to change someone's life simply by the words that you speak. "Death and life are in the power of the tongue" (Prov. 18:21 NKJV). That's why Paul urges you and me to be careful. "When you talk, do not say harmful things, but say what people need—words that will help others become stronger" (Eph. 4:29).
Earlier I gave you a test for love. There's also a test for the tongue. Before you speak, ask: Will what I'm about to say help others become stronger? You have the ability, with your words, to make a person stronger. Your words are to their soul what a vitamin is to their body. If you had food and saw someone starving, would you not share it? If you had water and saw someone dying of thirst, would you not give it? Of course you would. Then won't you do the same for their hearts? Your words are food and water! Do not withhold encouragement from the discouraged. Do not keep affirmation from the beaten down! Speak words that make people stronger. Believe in them as God has believed in you.
I didn't even go back to the dugout. I turned around in the middle of left field and climbed over the fence. I was halfway home when my dad found me. He didn't say a word. Just pulled over to the side of the road, leaned across the seat, and opened the passenger door. We didn't speak. We didn't need to. We both knew the world had come to an end. When we got home, I went straight to my room, and he went straight to the kitchen. Presently he appeared in front of me with cookies and milk. He took a seat on the bed, and we broke bread together. Somewhere in the dunking of the cookies I began to realize that life and my father's love would go on. In the economy of male adolescence, if you love the guy who drops the ball, then you really love him. My skill as a baseball player didn't improve, but my confidence in Dad's love did. Dad never said a word. But he did show up. He did listen up. To bring out the best in others, do the same, and then, when appropriate:
Do you believe in your kids? Then show up. Show up at their games. Show up at their plays. Show up at their recitals. It may not be possible to make each one, but it's sure worth the effort. Do you believe in your friends? Then show up. Show up at their graduations and weddings. Spend time with them. You want to bring out the best in someone? Then show up.
Friday, October 30, 2009
R.E.A.L. Men Bible Study
Living a Life of Purpose on Purpose
I. Living without Eternal Purpose
Ø Move from incident to incident and accident to accident
Ø Chase and sometimes catch only the wrong prizes
Ø End up bitter, angry, frustrated, depressed, unfulfilled, lonely
Ø Lose many of God’s richest blessing now and forever
1 Corinthians 3: 14 If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. 15 If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.
16 Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you? 17 If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him; for God's temple is sacred, and you are that temple.
II. The Life Spent on Eternal Purposes
Philippians 2: 12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed--not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence--continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
14 Do everything without complaining or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe 16 as you hold out the word of life--in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.
2 Thessalonians 1: 11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. 12 We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
III. Effort is Required1 Corinthians 9: 24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air. 27 No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize
This morning as I tried to spend time with God, I was interupted time and time again and finally was able to read this. I was reminded that God is always there and will answer your prayers like we saw on Tuesday with the man that Brother Charlie had meet that day and brought to Wildmen. That man cried out the lord that morning and God put Charlie in his path. I am struggling today........ Attacked on every side.... and I am feeling week and this is what was sent to me and I am sharing it with you in case any of my brothers are down today, be lifted up and know that God is with us always and we are to praise him in the good times and the bad. Jesus we Love you and Trust you. Amen
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Friday, October 30 2009
"For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline." 2 Timothy 1:7
God calls each of us to engage in spiritual warfare at times. Whenever satan wants to come against one of God's children, he does so by trying to intimidate through fear. Goliath's formidable size and arrogant boasting intimidated Saul and Israel's army. And because God's anointing had fallen from Saul, he was unable to respond with courage to Goliath's charge. Fear paralyzes and torments. That is why Saul could not respond.
The anointing had fallen on David, who was just a young boy, but mighty in spirit. David did not cower at the size or shouts of the giant Goliath. He saw Goliath through the eyes of God, who saw him as a mere speck. David had righteous indignation for an affront to the armies of the living God.
David did not weigh the risk of failure because his faith was resting totally in God. That is another important factor in overcoming fear-complete trust in God. When the Lord began training me to confront fear, the training grounds were a groundless lawsuit, intimidations, and calamity that confronted my very existence. Learning that these were merely tactics of the enemy, designed to instill fear, allowed me to stand firm in God's power to overcome.
Do not fear sudden calamity if you are walking uprightly before God. It may be setting the stage for a great victory that will bring praise and honor to your heavenly Father. These battles are training grounds for greater victories to come.
They need counselors to lead these young people to Jesus. Report time is 6:15. Google Project 99 and look for Lakeland event continuing through 11/1.
I may be going over Friday. Call me for info or if you want to set up a caravan.
Tom Whitaker 941.773.0991
Thursday, October 29, 2009
helpful for building others up according to their needs." Ephesians 4:29 NIV
"Speak when you are angry - and you'll make the best speech you'll every regret."
Dr. Laurence J. Peter
"Speech both conceals and reveals the thoughts of men." Latin Proverb
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Father I come to you in the name of Jesus Christ, your son, and according to James 1:5 I am seeking wisdom for _______________________
In the name of Jesus, according to Matthew 28:18 and Luke 10:19 & 20 I take authority over satan and his fallen angels and command that they be rendered deaf, dumb and blind to my prayers and removed from my presence. I place my own voice under subjection to the shed blood of Jesus and command that my own thoughts be taken captive to the obedience of Christ, according to II Corinthians 10:5 I ask that only Your Holy Spirit will speak to me as I wait on you for wisdom, insight and direction for ________________ and what You show me and direct me to d I will quickly obey.
James 1:5 “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
Matthew 28:18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in Heaven and on earth has been given to Me.”
Luke 10:19 & 20 “ I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in Heaven.”
II Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretention that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”
If you are ready to take the pill and start to understand that we battle a very real and active enemy take the next step and read the following posts and then open your bible and ask God to revel to you the truth.
Rejoice because the enemy has been defeated and he may come and bother us in our daily lives the fact of the matter is that he has been defeated.
As we learnt last night the enemy does not want you to know THIS and that YOU have power over him and his evil sprits in Jesus name.
Be advised that with this knowledge you are now a threat to him and he will attack more viciously now than ever before.
"For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms." Ephesians 6:12
My wife walked out of the airport restroom. She looked as if she was going to throw up. We were about to go through the airport checkpoint when we paused.
"I feel awful. It came on suddenly. I don't know if I should go," she said.
We were going on an overnight trip to meet with a workplace ministry about a possible joint venture project. It was important for me to have her there. But she was feeling so badly and would probably be miserable traveling in her condition.
"You may be right. Perhaps you should not go."
We were both disappointed. We began to transfer my clothing into my bag. We prayed together and I proceeded to the gate. I was disappointed, perplexed, and a bit angry.
"Lord, I don't know about this. If this is not of Your hand, I pray against it in Jesus' name. I pray for Angie's healing right now and I bind this spirit of infirmity."
I got to the gate about ten minutes later. As I was waiting to check in, I looked up and there was Angie.
"I'm going. I kept asking if I should go and a voice said, 'No.' I changed my mind three times. But I finally decided that I am not dead and I should be going on this trip."
We got on the plane and within a few minutes, the symptoms of illness were completely gone. The symptoms were a counterfeit. She was fine the rest of the trip. It was critical for her to participate with me because it became a major turning point in my own spiritual pilgrimage. She needed to experience what I was going to experience.
There is the spiritual and there is the physical. The spiritual involves two forces. One is good. One is evil. We must realize that the spiritual is more real than the physical. Satan has his agents in the world to thwart God's purposes. We need to recognize when these are at work. Pray that you might have spiritual eyes and ears to discern these forces today in your work.
We have a very real enemy and here is some information from the Bible:
Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one."
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel,for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.
I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven."
And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."
They went to Capernaum, and when the Sabbath came, Jesus went into the synagogue and began to teach. The people were amazed at his teaching, because he taught them as one who had authority, not as the teachers of the law. Just then a man in their synagogue who was possessed by an evil spirit cried out,
"What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are--the Holy One of God!"
"Be quiet!" said Jesus sternly. "Come out of him!"
The evil spirit shook the man violently and came out of him with a shriek. The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, "What is this? A new teaching--and with authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits and they obey him."
They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an evil spirit came from the tombs to meet him. This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him any more, not even with a chain. For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones. When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. He shouted at the top of his voice, "What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? Swear to God that you won't torture me!" For Jesus had said to him, "Come out of this man, you evil spirit!" Then Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" "My name is Legion," he replied, "for we are many." And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area. A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. The demons begged Jesus, "Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them."He gave them permission, and the evil spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned. Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man--and told about the pigs as well. Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.
He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons;
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts
Wednesday, October 28 2009
"And Elisha prayed, 'O Lord, open his eyes so he may see.' Then the Lord opened the servant's eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha." 2 Kings 6:17
Several years ago, a movie was made called Field of Dreams. The story is about a man who had a vision to build a baseball field in the middle of a cornfield on his rural farm. He did not know why; he just knew he was to do it. To the chagrin of his neighbors, he built the baseball diamond in the farm community. One night some players showed up. The man realized these were no ordinary players, but were actually the great players from the past. When the skeptical neighbors came to view this phenomenon, they were unable to see what the farm owner could see. This made it even worse for him. Now he was really a lunatic in their eyes.
This fictitious story has a spiritual application for us. First, if God tells us to "build a ball field," we should do it. It is not for us to determine the reason we are instructed to do it. Once we are obedient, God will allow us to see what others cannot see. It is the rite of passage for those who are willing to risk all for God's purposes. God increases the spiritual senses to levels we never knew before. Those around us will observe this.
Do you want to see what others cannot see? If so, it will require a level of obedience that will go beyond human reason. It may require risk and ridicule from others. But you will see what others cannot see.
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Patience; bearing provocation, annoyance, misfortune, delay, hardship, pain, etc., with fortitude and calm and without complaint, anger, or the like. Quietly and steadily persevering or diligent.
OUR NEED FOR PATIENCE
Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord's coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord's coming is near. Don't grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door. Brothers, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. As you know, we consider blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job's perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.
In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons.
1. Personal or biblical stories of how waiting, patience, perseverance has paid off.
2. What’s happened from being impatient? (relationally, business, spiritually)
GOD'S PATIENCE TOWARDS US
1 Timothy 1:15-16
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life.
REWARDS FOR PATIENCE
I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.
The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever- do not abandon the works of your hands.
You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.
2 Corinthians 1:3-5
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.
R.E.A.L. Men's bible study, 10-22-09
submitted by Charlie Pendergrass
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
We are learning that being in the word daily is what God wants because it draws us closer to him. Proverbs is a great way to start that practice. As you can see each one is short but contains a wealth of knowledge that WILL help you with your day and daily struggles. I wanted to point out some lines that hit me in my walk and I could NOT..... so I will point out the only one that doesn not impact me which is number 1.
1. Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.
2. A king's wrath is like the roar of a lion; he who angers him forfeits his life.
3. It is to a man's honor to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel.
4. A sluggard does not plow in season; so at harvest time he looks but finds nothing.
5. The purposes of a man's heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.
6. Many a man claims to have unfailing love, but a faithful man who can find?
7. The righteous man leads a blameless life; blessed are his children after him.
8. When a king sits on his throne to judge, he winnows out all evil with his eyes.
9. Who can say, "I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin"?
10. Differing weights and differing measures-- the LORD detests them both.
11. Even a child is known by his actions, by whether his conduct is pure and right.
12. Ears that hear and eyes that see-- the LORD has made them both.
13. Do not love sleep or you will grow poor; stay awake and you will have food to spare.
14. "It's no good, it's no good!" says the buyer; then off he goes and boasts about his purchase.
15. Gold there is, and rubies in abundance, but lips that speak knowledge are a rare jewel.
16. Take the garment of one who puts up security for a stranger; hold it in pledge if he does it for a wayward woman.
17. Food gained by fraud tastes sweet to a man, but he ends up with a mouth full of gravel.
18. Make plans by seeking advice; if you wage war, obtain guidance.
19. A gossip betrays a confidence; so avoid a man who talks too much.
20. If a man curses his father or mother, his lamp will be snuffed out in pitch darkness.
21. An inheritance quickly gained at the beginning will not be blessed at the end.
22. Do not say, "I'll pay you back for this wrong!" Wait for the Lord, and he will deliver you.
23. The LORD detests differing weights, and dishonest scales do not please him.
24. A man's steps are directed by the Lord. How then can anyone understand his own way?
25. It is a trap for a man to dedicate something rashly and only later to consider his vows.
26. A wise king winnows out the wicked; he drives the threshing wheel over them.
27. The lamp of the LORD searches the spirit of a man ; it searches out his inmost being.
28. Love and faithfulness keep a king safe; through love his throne is made secure.
29. The glory of young men is their strength, gray hair the splendor of the old.
30. Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, and beatings purge the inmost being.
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Tuesday, October 20 2009
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight." Proverbs 3:5-6
I turned off the interstate to get gas for my car. I was returning from a speaking engagement and it was very late. As I turned onto the road, I looked for the entrance ramp to get back on the interstate. It was dark and I could not see any signs. I made a turn to the right that appeared to be the turn I needed to make. I could see the interstate was next to the road. As I continued down this road, the interstate was on my left. It soon became obvious it was not the entrance road but rather a frontage road. I assumed it would take me to the next interchange.
However, the road soon turned away from the interstate. It grew darker and darker. The road became a dirt road. I realized I was not going to get to the interstate on this road. Being a bit frustrated that I had made the wrong turn, I turned around and went back, losing valuable time.
It is easy to make assumptions about the path we are on. If God's Spirit has not enlightened our reasoning, we are inclined to make the wrong choices. Our choices seem right at the time, but later we discover these choices have led us away from God because they were based on our own reasoning.
Acknowledge God in all your ways today. Lean completely on Him to reveal His direction for your life. If you do so, He will direct you to the desired destination He has for you.
Monday, October 19, 2009
"Pray much for others; plead for God's mercy upon them; give thanks for all he is going to do for them." 1 Timothy 2:1 TLB
"It is not only our duty to pray for others, but also to desire the prayers of others for ourselves." William Gurnall
"Be sensitive to the plight of others. You have to know about the tragedies
as well as the triumphs, the failures as well as the success." Jim Rohn
There are many people struggling today and we need to make time to remember them in our daily prayers, I have been astounded by some of the things that was shared with me on this trip and I am going to be praying for them. It is amazing what you find out when you did a little deeper with your friends and family.
Have a great day, your in my prayers......
series with "Healing the Wound" as this week's topic. This is usually very
meaningful to men so join us at 7:00PM for a great dinner and this powerful
Chip Powell has taken over leadership of the REAL Men Thursday morning Bible
study which meets in the Forum from 6:20-7:30AM.
The Thursday lunch Bible study meets at the New China Buffet on the NE
corner of Lockwood Ridge and Univ Pkwy from 11:45-1:00PM. This week will be
lead by Charlie Pendergrass in his first effort in leading us. Come to hear
what Charlie will say and to show him the solid support his courage and
desire to serve deserve.
Do not forget to find you a Paul to mentor you or a Timothy to mentor as we
learned at Men at the Cross.
God bless, Billy
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Monday, October 19 2009
"Everyone will be salted with fire." Mark 9:49
Jesus used parables to communicate principles of the Kingdom of God. He said each believer's life should have the same impact on his or her world as salt has on food. Salt gives food flavor and brings out the best, while at the same time it serves as a preservative.
What allows a Christian to become salty? Fire. God knows that each believer needs a degree of testing by fire in order for Christ's fragrance to be manifested. We cannot become salty without this deeper work of the Holy Spirit's fire in our lives. Fire purifies all that is not of Christ. It takes away all the impurities that prevent His nature from being revealed in us.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith-of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire-may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed (1 Peter 1:6-7). Are you a salty Christian? If not, pray a prayer that the immature are unwilling to pray. Pray that God makes you a salty Christian. It will result in praise and glory at the throne of God.