Proverbs 17:22 (NCV) A happy heart is like good medicine, but a
broken spirit drains your strength.
Sunday, May 31, 2009
The bible always links "believing" to "behavior." Let’s take a look at Joel 2:12-13 “Now, therefore,” says the Lord, “Turn to Me with all your heart, With fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.” So rend your heart, and not your garments; Return to the Lord your God, For He is gracious and merciful, Slow to anger, and of great kindness; And He relents from doing harm." (NKJV) What does the Lord mean? In this culture, when a person was filled with sorrow, they would rip and tear their clothes as a symbol of inner grief. The Lord knew that outside behavior can be faked even while your heart is not right. You can go to church, read your Bible when you feel like, pray, and even say, “Have a Blessed Day.” You can do all of this and your heart is not right with God and He knows it. Or on the other hand you walk around with a cross hanging on your keychain, religious bumper stickers plastered on your car, and listen to all the gospel radio stations. But when you neighbor needs help, you don’t have the time. You have road rage and have even been known to give the other driver a “not so nice” hand signal. We want to win the lost for the Lord, but they won't listen to us because they see the glaring inconsistency between our message and our lifestyle. Christian means Christ like. He knows are heart and if He is truly living in our heart we can walk in alignment with His word. And believe people will notice you will be set apart from the world. The time for change has come. Our walk must begin to match our talk. Let nonbelievers want what they see in you…Jesus Christ.
Tomorrow we will join together in remembering American soldiers who gave their lives in defense of our freedom. The verse that immediately comes to my mind when thinking about Memorial Day is John 15:13, "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." Memorial Day is the day that we remember those who have fallen, whether in battle or in peacetime, who have sacrificed all for the sake of freedom. These Americans deserve our support each day, and our prayers every night. Pray for their safety and for God to give them courage in the face of fear.
You can have the peace that you are looking for; there is a way to balance your life. No one can be perfect, or have a perfect life. But every one of us has the opportunity to experience perfect grace through a personal relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ.
1. Count your blessings daily. "Bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and forget not all His benefits." Psalm 103:2
2. Laugh often and hearty. "merry heart doeth good like a medicine" Proverbs 17:22 "A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance, but by sorrow of the heart is the spirit broken." Proverbs 15:13 "All the days of the afflicted are evil, but he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast." Proverbs 15:15
3. Focus on the needs of others. " Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others" Phil. 2:4 We must focus on caring for the needs of others instead of focusing on our selves. "Others Lord yes others let this my motto be. Let me think of others that I might be like thee."
For the past couple of weeks I have been receiving graduation announcements. Graduation is a time to celebrate the success of completing one’s education but for many graduating seniors, this is also a time that is filled with a great sense of uncertainty about the future. The challenges that lie ahead can be stepping stones or roadblocks.
Here is great advice for the graduate from Oprah Winfrey & Desmond Tutu.
Transform Your Wounds into Wisdom
Turn your wounds into wisdom. You will be wounded many times in your life. You'll make mistakes. Some people will call them failures but I have learned that failure is really God's way of saying, "Excuse me, you're moving in the wrong direction." It's just an experience, just an experience.
Oprah Winfrey Wellesley College commencement, 1997
Spread Your Eagle Wings
And God says to all of us, you are no chicken; you are an eagle. Fly, eagle, fly. And God wants us to shake ourselves, spread our pinions, and then lift off and soar and rise, and rise toward the confident and the good and the beautiful. Rise towards the compassionate and the gentle and the caring. Rise to become what God intends us to be--eagles, not chickens.
Desmond Tutu Brandeis University commencement, 2000
Social pressure is one thing that holds us back from taking charge and doing the right thing. Abraham instituted Barech, the "Grace After Meals" 4000 years ago. Abraham would invite travelers into his tent for a good meal, and then tell them the price of the meal was to bless God. They thought he was absolutely crazy! Very few people believed in God! Abraham was called Ha'Ivri ("the Hebrew"), meaning "the one who stands on the other side." He was considered a social outcast and a single voice in the wilderness.
Would we have had the fortitude to stand up to that kind of social pressure? Do we speak out today against the proliferation of sex, violence and drugs and crime in our country? Or are we preoccupied with self-image and social status? Do you fear rejection and isolation?
We live in a country where we are free. But are we free of the societal forces that restrict us to a narrow path of image and ideas? Freedom means doing the right thing even when it may not be socially popular. Stand up for what you believe in and see just how liberating it can be.
"Fear is useless. What we need is trust," Jesus tells us. "Do not be afraid. Only have faith," says the Lord. Jesus' crucial advice rises above our fear and everyday concerns. Jesus is proclaiming the Good News that God loves us so much that He will never abandon us.
You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.... You must do the thing you think you cannot do. - Eleanor Roosevelt
Be aware, but be at Peace. Remember, we have been given Faith! Remember the words of the Lord: "fear is useless: what is needed is trust" (Mark 5:36 New American Bible).
Preventing the Flu: Good Health Habits Can Help Stop Germs Avoid close contact. Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too. Stay home when you are sick. If possible, stay home from work, school, and errands when you are sick. You will help prevent others from catching your illness. Cover your mouth and nose. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. It may prevent those around you from getting sick. Clean your hands. Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth. Practice other good health habits. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food. Source: CDC