You give, you love, you bless; yet they disrespect you; But don’t #TapOut! –

dont quit

..be ye stedfast, unmovable  always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord (1 Cor 15:58)~ You can be the most reliable, the most trustworthy, the most loyal, the most truthful. You can be the best friend, spouse, family member or employee – and yet, those who are blessed through you don’t seem to even care – they just are who they are and you can’t convince nor impress them of your sincerity or intent! Reality is: people are not always going to appreciate you and in fact many will flat out disrespect you no matter what you do. Yes it’s frustrating when you give your best, love your best, help any way you can; and people just blow you off. But God appreciates it and HE will certainly make good of your works because you are the tangible conduit of His love! You are indeed one of the ways He blesses other people! But Let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal 6:9). As hard and as exhausting and frustrating as it is, we can’t tap out, we can’t quit, we can’t let the other person turn us away from the love that God wants us to give; the blessings He wants us to share! Continue giving, loving, doing the right thing! Some of YOUR blessing comes from what you persevere to give! It does pay off, even though you might feel like it won’t! Don’t ever think He isn’t paying attention to your heart and your walk! God’s blessings won’t come THROUGH you without some of those blessings coming TO you!

You might be discouraged, but don’t STAY discouraged – #TrustGod

living above circumstances

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal 6:9)~~ Have you ever been tempted to lose heart because God didn’t answer a critical prayer for you? You know, something urgent—and even something that you knew was God’s will? If prayers are going to be unanswered, then why pray? Seemingly unanswered prayers often rattle our faith. They shouldn’t, but they do. When this happens, we are tempted to lose heart. We are discouraged. Discouragement neutralizes optimism, assassinates hope, and erases courage. Unresolved discouragement and disillusionment soon replace faith and expectancy. Unprocessed discouragement results in mistrust. And it is at this critical point that the enemy of our souls has us exactly where he wants us. Paralyzed in unbelief from the neck down, our eyes see and our minds know what we ought to believe, but the faith of our hearts lies frozen. And a subtle mistrust of God sets in. Disheartened, we passively allow other weeds to sprout. Discouragement creates fertile soil for the weeds of doubt, fear, unbelief, and compromise to grow. What do we need to overcome discouragement? First, be truthful with God. God is not fooled by our lofty prayers, when deep inside we’re hurting. God is able to handle our emotions. Be honest. Share your grief with the One who knows you best. It’s normal to get discouraged, but it’s not acceptable to stay discouraged.With a heart of faith, look beyond your circumstances and your emotions to God who will renew you day by day. Realize that hardship is what God uses to perfect our faith (Romans 5:1-10). And remember, God promises “… we shall all reap if we do not grow weary.” My friend, the tomb is empty—Jesus Christ is alive—He is the One who can lift up heavy hands or a burdened heart. God has given us a life that is going to have times of discouragement and disappointment but in Him we will find peace, fulfillment and satisfaction. The alternative to disappointment with God seems to be disappointment without God.” The uncertainty of life can only be handled by a tough, resilient and persistent faith in a God who knows what He is doing!

#Endurance – Doing What You’re Supposed to Do –

endurance

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal 6:9); And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise (Heb 6:15)~~ God will restore us in HIS due time…we just need to do what we are supposed to do. Regardless of the ‘stuff’ around us that is making us want to just want to quit. The consolations of God are strong enough to support us under the heaviest of trials… But we can’t FINISH the race before us to obtain the reward of endurance if we constantly quit or flee when it gets hard! If you need to forgive…FORGIVE. Whatever you need to do…DO IT… Stop dreading your responsibility because you feel hurt over something that happened to you!! Stop sitting there wallowing or exercising your right to be a victim of the circumstance.  You are more than a conqueror…so name ONE conqueror that QUIT!!!!  Can’t??? Thought so! Get up off your blessed assurance, stop whining about what’s wrong with the race of life and get back in it! You can’t (and you won’t) always have it your way, but you have the intelligence to make adjustments. Find the way to keep going…let change energize you! Go get that win that God has for you at the finish!

It’s Always Okay to Go The Right Way -#BeNotConformed –

break away from the crew

He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed (Prov 13:20)~  I guess another way of putting it…Birds of a feather flock together. Regardless of the way you word it, the outcome still means the same. One of the biggest challenges of a person’s life is peer pressure. Growing up, we were (hopefully) taught how important it was to be around the right people to avoid ending up in the wrong place. Those of us who listened to our ‘teachers’ weren’t often in the popular crowd! But I’ve learned (time and time again) that God’s plan for our progress is rarely popular (or convenient). But I’ve also learned that He blesses those who are willing to do and align with what others won’t… Him! Therefore I’m energized when I think on Romans 12:2 -be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind- because the world makes us think we’re supposed to be this way or that way and we look for people that are the way we think we are supposed to be and get in deep with them…just because everybody’s doing it doesn’t mean it’s right for you…or right at all! But in a renewed mindset I know that it’s okay to not necessarily “fit in” with the crowd. When we stand different from “the crowd” and stand for the things of God, we walk with a different crowd…we adopt a truly foundational element of walking in wisdom. With this wisdom we experience some amazing things with God. When we choose to align with the right people, it results in us ending up in the right places. It’s not only about who you know, but who you keep company with! 

No Matter What We Lose – We are Eternally #Connected to Christ! –

rom838

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom 8:38-39)~~ God having manifested His love in giving His own Son for us, can we think that any thing should turn aside or do away that love? Troubles and trials neither cause nor show any reduction or loss of His love. Whatever we may be separated from, God’s love remains. Nothing can take Christ from us; Nothing can take us from Him; and that is enough. We may surround ourselves with the possessions of this world, but what vain things are they! Can we say of any of them, “Who shall separate us?” We will eventually be removed from possessions, pleasant dwellings, family, friends, and estates. At last we must part, if by no other means, then by death. Then farewell to all this world accounts as most valuable. And what is left for the poor soul, who has not had Christ? Nothing but that which they would gladly part with, but could not; the condemning guilt of all their sins! But the soul that is in Christ, when other things are pulled away, even in death, cleaves to Christ, and these separations pain him not. Yes! Even when that horrible death comes, that breaks all other unions, even that of the soul and body, our soul is carried into the nearest union with its beloved Lord Jesus, and the full enjoyment of Him forever. In this I am forever comforted! I don’t care how much of anything you have… If you don’t have a loving relationship with Jesus now, you will never know Peace!!

Father is more than a title. #ManUP #FathersDay2016

In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes (Judg 21:25)~~ Men are more zealous to assert and support their own authority than submit to that of God. They would act better to repent of their rash oaths, bring sin-offerings, and seek forgiveness in the appointed way, rather than attempt to avoid the guilt of perjury by actions so wrong. That men can advise others to acts of treachery or violence, out of a sense of duty, forms a strong proof of the blindness of the human mind when left to itself, and of the fatal effects of a conscience under ignorance and error.

There’s a growing phenomenon of ‘daddies’ who don’t seem to want to grow up.  They drift from job to job, live with parents or run with a crew of buddies, and focus much of their energy on drinking, carousing, watching sports, playing video games, and chasing other women. What makes this generation of young ‘daddies’ different from previous ones is that many are delaying maturity longer than before, and our culture is encouraging them to prolong adolescent behavior.. even though they have children to raise. It is a stage of life where guys gather to be guys with each other, unhassled by the demands of parents, wives, girlfriends, jobs, kids, and the other “nuisances” of adult life. In this topsy-turvy, Peter-Pan mindset, young men shirk the responsibilities of adulthood and fatherhood and remain fixated on the trappings of boyhood, while the boys they still are struggle heroically to prove that they are real men despite all of their actions and evidence to the contrary. It’s as if these young men have developed a warped idea of fatherhood.  They think becoming a man means getting to do whatever they want, and becoming a father means they’ve made a baby… and that’s it!!! So for them, any responsibility with being a man means giving up their cherished independence.. hence they resist and rebel. With that type of mindset, you wonder what type of husbands and fathers they will be when they finally set aside their childish ways. Our sinful, human nature craves independence; we want to go our own way, and avoid the responsibilities of commitment to God and to other people.  As Isaiah 53:6 tells us, “All of us like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way.”  We live in a culture that celebrates youth and beauty and independence—even at the expense of growing up.  Many young men today immerse themselves in a world of media entertainment and diversions that tell them it’s okay to live a self-centered lifestyle, free of commitments to anything beyond endless and mindless pleasure. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them (Rom 1:28-32). A man cannot be brought to greater slavery than to be given up to his own lusts!!

In a world like this, where can men—young and old—learn how to become real fathers, real men?  The simple answer is:  From other fathers and other men.  Whether we are young or old, we need others in our lives who will teach us, model for us, and encourage us to make the right choices. Boys growing up without fathers need men who will step into their lives and mentor them. And young men who refuse to grow up need peers and mentors who will exhort them to act like fathers and men. There is a constant call by the species of “man” for “men” to be what God calls us to be… Men… in more senses of the word than being over 18 or having the ability to make a baby, pound our chest and seek freedom and independence to go out and act … childish because we can!  While none of us ever outgrow the need for having other men to mentor us, it is an absolute essential for those who would seem to have their teenage tendencies still pretty strong inside. Every man has a need for people around him who can call him up and even call him out.

Being a father goes well beyond making babies… it means taking responsibility—for your choices, for your family, for your community, and for the next generation.  Men, husbands and fathers: WE need to step up and take responsibility. Boys – it’s time to MAN-UP! Let’s give our children and significant others a reason to say Happy Father’s Day!

Man of the House: Are you BEING the man? #ManUp-

For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body (Eph 5:23)~~ A key flaw in the mindset of many husbands is that being the “head of the wife” or the “head of the house” means they possess some title of greatness because of their ‘manhood’ and they can live like some lavish king being served by his subjects and catered to by his minions! Even if the truth is not as far gone as the example, the point here cannot be stated better than by Jesus Himself: “Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you shall be your servant” (Mark 10:43). Being the head of the household and/or the head of the wife means work, duty and great responsibility. The “head” is the one RESPONSIBLE for what happens in the house and in the marriage and in the family. Husbands, you cannot enjoy the privileges of “headship” and not be willing to shoulder the responsibilities that come with it. Being in the role of ‘head’, ‘man’ or ‘leader’ doesn’t mean you get to sit and dictate and be served – in fact, you are to serve and sometimes you will serve more than you will BE served! You can’t franchise, subcontract or outsource your husband responsibilities without hurting your wife and your marriage. You are accountable to God for the physical and spiritual welfare of your family. Make your wife’s life easier by carrying all of your responsibilities dutifully.  Your wife was not created to carry out her role and yours at the same time.  Your wife should not live like a widow while you are still alive. You are the man, the CEO, Priest, Provider and Protector of the family. Act like it.  Be involved, be present, take charge, work hard, pray, plan and execute. Above all “husbands”, remember that your wife is your suitable helper, you are not hers! Let her thank God that she is married to you! You are the “head” but are you “heading”? You are the MAN but are you BEING the man?