DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF?

The truth is that we shouldn’t sweat anything AFTER we have yielded our members servants to God and been responsible in small things or big things. If we limit ourselves to moving our body members (according to a growing picture of God’s principles in action, Please memorize this phrase) ; then logically there should be not difference between tough tasks and easy tasks.

If only we were logical beings. But there is hope, God would not command us to “Let this mind be in you which was in Jesus”, who is named LOGOS  the beginning and end of all reasoning; if He did not stand ready to give us His logic.

Remember, to figure out what a healthy positive godly approach would look like we simply have to look at ” How do I normally relate to this situation?” and then DO THE OPPOSITE!

So, how do we normally SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF and thereby squander the neurotransmitters and energy God has placed in my brain to handle stress?

Ask yourself which of the following two responses would use up more calming serotonin in your brain?

A. Yes Lord I see the trial and you have helped me deal with many similar issues before, thanks for placing ——— in my life so give me grace to ask his help while doing my part, help me remember that my part is always doable and you will never allow me to be tried so severely beyond that of others that I would have now way to avoid sin which is the only outcome I should care about and all other results are Yours, and help me keep in mind all the wonderful things that will still be true no matter how this situation turns out, at the least, (and what a least!) I will live forever with Jesus as his beloved bride whom he has cleansed and presented to Himself as pure undefiled and without blemish.

B. Oh My God! I’m going to screw this up and we are all going to die!

OK you get the point. The four things we do to SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF are

1. fail to carry a grateful memory of all the things God and you have already faced.

2. Fail to ask for help from those God has gifted us with, or ask for help and then beat ourselves up for asking.

3. Focus on more than moving our body members.

4. Forget that the UNLOSABLE good things God has given us.

Now copy down response A and practice it all week and then drop me a line on how it works for you.

 

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IT’S ALL ABOUT RELATIONSHIP

Look at the world around you. You might start with the tip of your own nose. That, and everything else you see will cease to exist in a blinding flash of intense heat. Considering that, what should our priorities be?

2 peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,

The scriptures suggest less materialism and a holy life. I add that the opposite of my normal focus is usually pretty close to godliness. That would be to focus on relationships,”love people-use things, not love things-use people” especially thinking about the other persons blessing and working at BEING REAL with them.

We followers of and believers in the finished work of Jesus, should, of all people be most able to relax and be real. Unfortunately, church is often the place of the most intense concentration of pretense and superficiality found anywhere. A wise observer once noted that Sunday morning for 11 till noon is the most segregated hour of the week in America. I am suggesting that it is also the hour in which we love to pretend more than at other times. We talk in strange ways when we pray, we pretend to have participation in our Sunday school classes by having the teacher go on and on reviewing the teacher’s manual and asking people to read a verse. Yet, no one is asked to share how those verses frighten them or anger them or seem impractical etc. (See my discussion on what faith actually looks like.)

It scares the liver out of us to be real, but then any acceptance that we receive is superficial and does not impact our loneliness. This is a lonely world and the United States has crafted what is probably the loneliest society ever!

Start with God. It is pretty safe to BE REAL with Him as he already knows all about you, and seems to like you anyways. Yet, in our universal insanity, we are afraid that He wouldn’t like us if He found out the real truth. In fact, we might not like ourselves if we took a full realistic look. (We are,after all much worse than we realize, maybe the worst sinner ever–like the apostle Paul.) Some of us wouldn’t accept a God who accepts us. We project our own contempt (I don’t like myself so you must not like me either.)

Just as it is impossible to love God without practicing on a person that we can see.

1 John 4:20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?

I suggest that it is impossible to accept ourselves, warts and all, without BEING REAL with a fellow human, finding that they still accept us and have hope for us, and then realizing that God feels the same way. Ask God to bless you with someone you can BE REAL with, if they reject you then you had a fake relationship that would never have given you a picture of God’s acceptance of you. However if they are accepting but you never GET REAL with them, then you will say “yes but” to their acceptance and not benefit as God intends.

Lord help me to find in you all the acceptance I need but help me to be more open to letting others see the clay vessel that I am so that they might marvel in the treasure I contain–your love and Spirit within me.

 

EMERGENCY KIT-God watch

Which comes easier to you, listing needs that you would like God’s help with: or listing praises as to what He has recently done in your life?

Our brains are naturally wired to be concerned about the problems of life: we have to work hard to see all the beauty and wonder and praiseworthy things that God is doing.

Sure we are grateful for things He has done in the distant past, but I find that it is the recent acts of the Holy Spirit in my life that give me the courage to get up and face today.

I led a sunday school class for adult mature Christians a few years ago. I would start by splitting the whiteboard into (praises / requests) and then we would go to prayer. At first the requests side was packed and the praise side was empty. I than posed the question,” Is it that God has not been answering prayers, in which case why ask Him for more? Or do we promptly forget His blessings, in which case why should He answer if it brings Him no glory?” It only took a few weeks to fill out the praises side with current answers to prayer. I guess the problem was lack of observing God at work and remembering.
I suggest to all I meet that they exercise their positive vision, of what God is doing in their lives, by mechanically 1. stopping at lunch, supper, and bedtime and 2. reviewing the previous four hours searching for anything positive. When God shows you a positive, savor it and appreciate it for a moment, let it balance your heart then move on. When you come into trials, the memory of all the good will lessen the impact of the problem and help you turn to God rather than overreact. Then take every opportunity to state appreciation to those around you for their positive acts and to witness to one and all what God has been doing in your life.

James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

Philippians 4:8Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
At first being picky positive, may come with difficulty, you may feel that you are belittling the seriousness of the problems in your life by noting and savoring the positives. Or you may worry that, if you became too polyannish, you would not deal with the tasks at hand.
In reality, noticing the positives keeps us from being overwhelmed so that we have more stamina more creativity, hope and willingness to cast all our care on Him and do the little that we can. We have a greater ability to bring God glory by witnessing to what He is doing in our lives. We have greater peace that He can handle the current situation because He has been handling the recent situations.
Our singing and praising Him gains substance from being specific rather than vague. It is similar to the difference between saying to your spouse,”I love you” and saying to them. “I so enjoy and appreciate your dependability, enthusiasm, integrity, creativity etc. as I noticed in how you did _______.”
Elizabeth Barrett Browning (She was talking to an earthly love, I like to quote her to express my love to Jesus, He likes me to count the ways.)
(JESUS)How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of every day’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from praise,
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints -I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! -and, if the FATHER choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.
Suggestions: Things of beauty, interest, feeble efforts, fun, joy, useful, comforting, encouraging, strengthening, helpful,courageous. Has God given you opportunities, opened your eyes to see and heart to pray. Taught you from nature, or His word, or through fellow travelers.