READ THIS FIRST

Nothing in this blog is intended to contradict or replace the need for professional counseling, or medications. It does not purport to tell you what to do or to agree with you or take sides.  It may, however, help you work more effectively with counselors, doctors and medication, as they help you do your part to grow in GRACE. These are the thoughts of a man who loves the Lord Jesus Christ and has found in his own life that all scripture is given by inspiration of God for 5 things:

1.To help him know what the Bible says practically about living a healthy obedient life.

2.God’s word reproves him, showing him that he is far more messed up than he could ever have realized on his own—but God loves him, and can handle “it”, all of “it”—chief of sinners and all! He finds is helpful to remember that everyone else is just as messed up and God loves them and helps them. So he reminds himself to “lighten up and do your part to letting God and others help you”.

3.God’s Word corrects what it has reproved in him, as he works with accountability and support to apply the principles.

4.God’s Word  then equips him for all the life situations that come along.

5. Having let God’s Word help him, he loves to share with others, as one beggar with another, the principles that have helped. Asking them to prayerfully consider these ideas but go to the Word and be “Bereans” and ask whether these principles are really what the Bible says.

So , here goes with “In my life I’ve found–what do you think?

 

RADICAL MINDFULNESS

Remember the rule? If you want to know what godliness looks like—just picture what you normally do and then godliness will, pretty much, be the opposite!

So what is my normal state of mindfulness? Well, not to be mindful at all! I let my focus drift to the future the past and everywhere else. If I manage to pull my focus to the present I tend to take for granted the good and even find fault or resent it and picture and long for my present reality to be something else:

WHAT DO I HAVE?

WHO IS IN MY LIFE?

WHAT CAN I DO?

WHO AM I?

If only I had more then I would be happy, then I get more and am not happy. Look at how rotten my car is my house is my food is etc.

If only that person loved me or that one was my friend. These people I have are selfish ungrateful electronic addicts who suck my dry and return nothing etc. etc.

There is no point trying because I would just screw up everything. I can’t do this and I can’t do that and since I can’t what is the point of trying. What I could do wouldn’t change anything!

Look at me I am unlovable, I wish I was someone else.

RADICAL MINDFULNESS:

What do I have? Let me savor it and thank God for it, take care of it and share it with others. GRATITUDE

Who is in my life? Let me love on them and learn from them, enjoy them, be glad to see them and encourage them, and seek their best interest. LOVE (both phileo and agape)

What can I do? I can move my body members as servants to God according to a growing awareness of God’s principles in action and then delight in what God is able to make out of it. OBEDIENCE

Who am I? Let me delight in God’s design and craftsmanship and how it ministers to others and allows me to be a useful part of the body, rejoicing in the gifts of others. WORSHIP ( I would that everyone could be just like I but it is OK they can be them and didn’t God do a good job on them too!) I Corinthians 7; 7   11;1  II Corinthians 11;5  Acts 26;9

We look at reality with God’s eyes seeing the good and the evil but not RESENTING not going round and round on the details  then we seize the moment with God’s help.

Problems: we accept ourselves and God’s sovereignty when we can’t fix it. After all, no one gets away with sin or God would be mocked. We bless and minister to and pray for those who curse and use us. We set limits on the problem when we can and fix what we are able.

People: we love on them and learn from them and encourage them in the Lord and set limits when we need to.

Tasks: grab with all your might.

The we ask : IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE GOD WANTS ME TO DO ABOUT THIS SITUATION RIGHT NOW? If not, Lord help me let go and grab the next piece of life

REJOICE IN THE OTHER’S GIFTS

I remember a teacher who was asked to do a class at a longer seminar. The main speaker would talk then people could break up and go to smaller classes. The seminar made the mistake of asking the main guy to do an elective class and so no one showed up to the teacher’s class. He was complaining to the Lord who replied, “What do you want me to do? Make the other guy less interesting, less useful so people would come to your class?”

He made some apostles, some evangelists and preachers and teachers and some heads and some feet and a few of us are hangnails but all are of the body and all are needed.

Are there people in your church who are super eloquent, beautiful, sing like angels, are great with children, can act in public with no discomfort, are gifted with their hands?

You can tell if you have a problem with comparison by: do you praise and enjoy their gifts and then don’t want to be around them because you feel “less” by your own comparison. 2 Corinthians 10:12 measuring themselves by themselves and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise. Most of the time we think of the problem of feeling superior by comparison; but most of the people I know do the comparison that leaves them feeling less beautiful or wise or gifted. Have you ever thought that they might be isolated and lonely precisely because God needed to give them special abilities but now no one wants to hang around with them. Isaiah 45;9 10 shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou?or thy work, He hat no hangs? Who unto him that saith unto his father, What begettest thou? or to the woman what hast thou brought forth? I was raised with all manner of pottery in the house and often the cheapest ugliest pot was used most often and served the greatest needs.

So let those of us who see ourselves as “the least” learn to do our part knowing that we are much more necessary and remember to like and hang out with the prettier pots so they won’t be lonely.

AGREE TO DISAGREE AMICABLY

Boy, that title even rhymes! The Bible is full of bizarre, do the opposite of your natural inclination and it will work, suggestions.

Choose to walk two miles when forced to walk one!

When struck on one cheek, do not defend or counter-attack. Roll with it and try to find out where the attack is coming from!

When cursed–bless!

When badly used–do good to the user!

The first shall be last and the last shall be first.

Rejoice when persecuted-you are in good company.

etc. etc. etc.

When others pick a fight and you recognize a fool trying to mess with you. Do not respond to the topic that they have picked, ie. “Why does a good god allow evil?” or “How can he allow little children to suffer?” Instead, say “In my life I’ve always found that when I ask questions like that it is because there is SIN in me and I don’t want to deal with it. Or it is because I want to be my own god. I wonder if there is some sin or desire to be seen as wise and in control that you are struggling with and so you ask these questions?” Or “those are great questions, maybe we could get together and try to see what God’s word has to say about it. So the approach is “we are more alike than you think and whether you agree with me or not I like you and want to be in relationship with you.

Lois and I have paid a big price because our son William decided to live the homosexual life. We said that we had to disagree with his choices, based on God’s word, but we loved him and he was our son and we wanted to be part of his life. He, however, said that if we did not agree with his views then he would never talk to us or relate to us.

My daughter Cheri has a blog – christianscience4kids – and is somewhat bothered by heathen attacking her. More bothersome are the “Christians” that fight for the theory that God created over billions of years through quintillions of miserable deaths. Cheri has to DISAGREE but is kind and willing to relate–but they are not. Also bothersome are the Christians who believe the truth but attack and treat like dirt, those who disagree with them.

I once got up in church to share from God’s word that in the end times there would be people who knew that God had spoken all things into existence but because of their lust, (desire to argue and control) would argue for unchanging forces that work slowly over vast spaces of time. A gentleman came up to me and said rather loudly, “So you are saying that we who believe in God guided evolution and lustful? I replied that I was not saying anything but simply quoting 2 Peter 3:3-15 “Well!” He declared, “This discussion is over” He then marched away. What discussion? He did like to argue and was probably afraid to stop and look at the Word. I would have loved to help him walk away from a (knowledge puffs up) approach to a (knowledge with Agape) brings wisdom approach. He gave me no opening.

Jesus prayed, “Father don’t take them out of the world just keep them from sin while they are in the world.” Whatever the heathen do, we Christians should agree to disagree and still like and love and relate to others that disagree if they will let us. If we must suffer, let us suffer for being right with a good attitude not for being right with a bad attitude

VICTIM/SURVIVOR/MORE THAN CONQUEROR

The Lord says there is none righteous , “No, not one!” But we love to say that our sin is not quite as bad as those other’s. “I thank God that I am not like that sinner over there!” The alcoholics at AA say, “at least I am not a child abuser.” The opiate user is glad they are not alcoholics, etc. The opposite happens when we compare the degree of our past abuse, or the severity of our illness or life situation. “Yours may be bad, but, poor me, mine  is worse.” I remember some young schizophrenics who came to my groups regularly and whined about their own miserable situation compared to the others. After growing in grace and letting God bring good out of their plight, they did a complete turn around and said, ” I have problems but I’m just glad I don’t have to put up with your situation. They were even able to thank God for their illness and see that they were doing better as a result of their illness; less judgmental, more grateful for little things, more aware of their need for God and others etc. Every single human being has been victimized but the deadly thing about comparison of personal hurt is that the surface details are so different that we can all feel that ours is the worst. Just as it is impossible to say what is the difference between big sin and little sin; it is impossible to say what is big abuse, big victimization and little. I was just ignored as a child, so that is a “little” thing, right? Still I struggle today with the after effects of being invisible and with resultant trouble believing that GRACE is true for me.

VICTIM: Believing that because of what happened to me, I can not be expected to grab life to the full, take risks, give to others what I never received, be grateful for what I have, who is in my life, what I can do and who I am. Others should do for me, life owes me one etc. (Wallow in it.)

SURVIVOR: Struggling to do the best that I can and going the first mile to put up with and struggle along in my own strength always impaired by the past but doing my best. (Try to be strong)

CONQUEROR: Letting God pour out GRACE in abundance far greater than all my hurt and bring so much ministry and blessing that I can truly say “They meant it for evil but God meant it for blessing.  (Let go and let God)

We are more that conquerors–through Christ and not through trying to make the best of a bad situation.

When someone’s sin causes me pain and loss:

  1. A.Who is sinned against? B. Who is the victim? C. Who stands to gain but usually is hurt by their own sinful response to the event?
  2. A. God. B. The sinner C. I stand to gain if I run to God for Grace to respond in his way.

 

blog struggles

I think that I have really messed up my blog page trying to improve it but maybe I am learning slowly as I go . I will be doing a lot of “blogs” which are just trying to arrainge the topics in a more helpful way. So feel free to ignore these as they are mostly review. And , of course pray for me as I struggle with this.

GRACE MERCY AND PEACE

These are the three things that:

  1. I desperately need from God in order to deal with my SIN
  2. However I could not earn any of it, so it is a free undeserved GIFT from God to me
  3. Mercy is God helping me BENIFIT from the consequences of my sin and others by taking the overwhelming consequences on himself and coming into the remaining consequences and walking them with me, helping me learn from them to hate sin and hunger for righteousness. (Free from the penalty of sin–separation from God.)
  4. GRACE: is God giving me the power to not sin in the present. (Free from the power of sin.)
  5. PEACE: is God helping me not fear future sin, since he will be there to help me, and the joyous looking forward to being in a sinless  place for all eternity. (Free from the presence of sin.)

 

TRYING TO “FIX” MESSED UP PEOPLE

When my ways please the Lord ,He makes even my enemies to be at peace with me! Prov. 16:7

Agape love means, “Seeking the best interest of the other person regardless of the cost to myself.” If there is someone in my life who is doing things which are wrong, according to my understanding of the Bible, then trying to get them to change must be the “Agape” thing and please the Lord. Right? If they won’t listen then I should try to make them listen, “for their own good!” Right?

Have you ever had someone at church start a sentence with, “I’m telling you this for your own good…”? I’ll bet you didn’t wind up feeling that it did much for your good.

I am always trying to help other people and often they refuse to be helped. It should lead to a burden for them, to praying, “Father forgive them and open their eyes”, However it often results in my feeling angry that they wouldn’t let me help them. I am doing better at catching myself and realizing that I was wanting to help them to make me feel good and not just for their welfare. ‘

Don’t forget that the goodness of God led you to repentance. When the rich young ruler walked away from Jesus’ advice because he was too rich, Jesus didn’t run after him and say, “Hey, buster, you can’t ignore the advice of the creator of the universe and get away with it!” No he looked at him and loved him and let him go. (Church history believes that it was Mark who, interestingly, wound up running naked to escape capture as a follower of Christ. Mark 14 51-52)

When people are messed up and it is ruining their life, they complain and we point out that their choices need to change if they want different results. Even Einstein said that “If you keep coming at life making the same mistakes that didn’t work yesterday and expect them to work today–you are insane! I saw a funny sketch where someone had a large nail pounded in their forehead and kept complaining of headaches but wouldn’t let anyone point out the nail or try to help them remove it. Naturally we want to get them to line up with God’s truths. But if you really want to maximize the chance that they will allow themselves to benefit, you may need to just respect and love on them. “But, they’ll never change!” Perhaps, but they sure won’t if you nag or give up on them.

Sadly, you and I know people like that and we try to help them and then get mad and give up. I was listening to a teaching tape on helping pregnant drug addicts and the key to helping them was to treat them as special. The staff learned their names, their children’s names and looked at them and smiled and treated them well. In turn they allowed themselves to be helped. A program in Texas allows alcoholics to have lodging and medical care without having to be sober and treats them with dignity and they often will finally allow themselves to be helped.

Isn’t that what the Lord did for you and me, in that while we were yet sinner Christ died for us? Do you have a person in your life you are desperately trying to change or have given up on and just go around badmouthing them or reviewing the details of how bad they are? Try treating them with respect and seeing them through God’s eyes.