Open This Up. . .

image found: avatars.imvu.com

“Kingdom Now”

Dear Readers: Open this Truth to apply to all that hinders us from experiencing more of “Kingdom now.” So where we read anger apply your learned flesh response: despair, resentment, denial, depression, addiction, fear, jealousy, overwhelmed, obsessed, indemnify (new word for me/look it up), vanity, pride, offended. . . “unlearn it.” Let’s unlearn together today. My pivot point in thinking would be despair to hope.

I’m listening to Laura Story: I Can Just Be Me, while I’m thinking of you. God, lift these words off the page to make life-giving changes to each of us. Amen

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Saturday, February 22, 2014

A New Way of Thinking
by Rick Warren
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” Romans 12:2 (NLT)

The way you express your anger is a learned response. You didn’t just automatically choose it; somebody modeled it for you. Anger response is a learned response.

The good news is you can unlearn it. You don’t have to stay that way. You can learn new patterns and habits. You don’t have to keep perpetuating what your parents and their parents and their parents did. Every time you get angry in an inappropriate way, you’re modeling it for your kids. You’re teaching them how to do it the wrong way, and they’re going to teach their kids how to do it the wrong way. Somebody has to stop the cycle!

The Bible says in Romans 12:2, “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think” (NLT). What’s the behavior of this world? Repress, express, and suppress.

Television and movies are filled with violent responses to people who are frustrated, hurt, or feel out of control. Kids learn from the models they observe. You don’t want to teach your kids wrong ways to be angry.

The key to learning a new way to handle anger is in Romans 12:2: “changing the way you think.”

If you want to change the way you act, you don’t focus on the behavior. You don’t even go back to the way you feel. You start by changing the way you think. When you change your mental process, it’s going to change the way you feel, and it’s going to change your behavior. You will be “transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

That’s what God does for you. He’s the one who can change the destructive thought patterns in your mind and transform you into a new person.

Talk It Over

What patterns do you see in your family that have affected the way you respond to difficult situations?
How can you better model for your kids or others how to respond to people in loving ways?
In what other ways do you want God to transform you into a “new person”?
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Our Gift: 40 Days of Love Study Kit
What is your #1 goal in Life? Your answer to that question will reveal your dominant life value. Everyone has one whether they realize it or not. It’s what we unconsciously base our decisions on. Find yours…
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40 Days of Love: Complete Series
Everyone has a life principle, whether it’s comfort, fun, safety, or affirmation. Join Pastor Rick for this series that walks through the ways to make love the most important goal of your life and be obedient to Christ: “Let love be your greatest aim” (1 Corinthians 14:1).
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This devotional is based on the current Daily Hope radio series at www.rickwarren.org.

Rick Warren has helped people live with hope and purpose for more than 40 years. He’s the founding pastor of Saddleback Church in Southern California and author of several books, including “The Purpose Driven Church” and “The Purpose Driven Life,” read by more than 100 million people in 137 languages. He created the PEACE Plan (plant churches of reconciliation, equip servant leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, educate the next generation), which is used by churches in 196 countries. His radio teaching and daily devotional, Daily Hope, is offered across America.

This devotional ©2014 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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Monday’s Manna Moment: Jesus Wept/March 3, 2014

jesus-wept

Author’s Pre-post:  This was the first verse I understood. I had much grief in my life, beginning early on, with the loss of my dad, suddenly at seven. I got this about my Jesus. I cherished He got this about me. As an adult I’ve always been a “crier.” Some tears were born of pity, some compassion, some righteous anger, some grief, some joy but always because I love. I love deeply with intent of God’s goodness. With this desperate yearning. . . .there could be “more Kingdom” in a different choice, in a different circumstance or in a different perspective.

Tears are because we love. 

This is a great 30 minute podcast by gifted Timothy Keller:

“Praying Our Tears”

Press the play arrow and it will download for you to pray through to “Kingdom Size” your perspective on tears. God bless you.

Redeemer Presbyterian Church

www.redeemer.com

Redeemer Presbyterian…

Ministry of Tim Keller in New York City. Online audio and other resources.

An Epic Story

I’ve always loved C.S. Lewis and his created Narnia since I read it in middle school and then read the full series to my girls. I relate strongly to Lucy for many reasons. Beginning with her being the youngest. . . .

I’ve been drawn to this concept of epic for months, I believe I know now why. You must know. Words reveal the very heart of God for you. Obviously, when inspired by love.

GOD sees your life’s journey as a long poem, one narrating the adventures of you, the heroic figure in the making of His legendary Kingdom. Do you feel epic?  Do you feel heroic? Do you feel your life is an adventure?

I’m thinking about our pastor and his wife leaving the pulpit in their “twilight” years to pursue missionary work. I’m thinking about a young couple that carry all their children in tow with a bus when mom is not home schooling and dad is not working and raising chickens. I’m thinking of a man serving his life as a fire-fighter, saving lives, vibrant in his retired life with the passion of sailing. Jim told me at our last ALS clinic together, better him with this disease than one of his siblings. Jim is writing his own epic version of The Journey of the Dawn Treader waters of heaven that challenge his horizon.as we speak. I dare say, C.S. Lewis is penning out Jim’s first victory sail across the blazingly blue waters of heaven that challenge his horizon.

Jim, Janelle. . .the following epic tale youtube is dedicated to you. Jim’s heroic adventure’s reach far beyond this world now into unseen waters.

Your life, Jim’s poem of his life, home schooling, missionary work. . .now where the rubber meets the road . . .where The Cross engages the ground of our humanity. . . so stay with me here. . .

“The ground is level at The Cross.”  ~  Murphy Toerner

The growth curve on that wisdom is limitless. Just one facet on it is. . .get out of the comparison game. Missionary work is no higher than laundry. Intense health struggles are no deeper than a marathon. Home schooling is no greater love than public education. Different yes, but each one of you, it’s own epic poem in the making. GOD sees in you a journey worth the taking. In you, we experience a story in the waking. (Just could not resist the rhyme ;))

You are an epic journey in the HANDS OF AN ALMIGHTY GOD. Do not sell yourself short of this God-breathed narration of your Kingdom Story!!!

ep·ic
ˈepik/
noun
 1.
  1. a long poem, typically one derived from ancient oral tradition, narrating the deeds and adventures of heroic or legendary figures or the history of a nation.
    synonyms: heroic poem; More

“You Are Worth the Wait” Part One Single Women

This is dedicated to my daughters. beautiful young ladies: Hope, Ashlyn, Megan and Kathleen

Some of their friend’s visit with us from time to time 🙂
I wish someone had talked to me like this:

8ae47e258df22049fb3e60083e113467I can’t give credit to author or poster. Just stumbled  upon this in a google search. If you know please let me know. I’d love to complete the precious prayer.

Perhaps there is a daughter, grand daughter, mentoree, young friend you can share this with. . .

Believe you are worth the wait. . . 

Your parents waited for your first smile

First steps waited for, with bated breath, by your parents

Your teachers waited for your “light bulb moment”

Your date waited for the honor to hold your hand

Your friend waited for you to call and ask

Your dog waited to wag his tail until you get home

Your Lord waited for the first time you laid your head on His lap in love

That book that will change your life forever waits for you to find it

The party waits for you to arrive to begin it’s fun times

That student next to you waits for the encouragement only you can give

The cupcake waits for you to finish it’s sweetness with butter icing and sprinkles

The stranger waits for you to let him in the long line of steamed engines

    The star waited to catch your eye, to shoot across the sky in a spectacular show

Your co-worker waits for your intuitive helping hands

The musical score waits your release of “rest” for the next note to play it’s melody

The man that is God’s best waits for your introduction

 Believe you are worth the wait. . .

Monday’s Manna February 17, 2014 “Duty”

This youtube had 251,289 views: WOW!!!

I can strongly relate to this journey.  Can you?

I’ve had this distant connection between my disease and the Cross of Jesus. (Pain is all too good at creating distance 😦 ) Their relationship (the Cross and the guard) seemed mere acquaintance at best.  I don’t believe God gave me ALS. I do believe God shoulders the brunt weight of the load. This moving illustration “connected the dots” about my duty and obedience within. 🙂 I felt His personal request to hold my disease from His Cross perspective. (The choice here is to carry the worldly pain or hold the entrusted privilege of guarding my post at His Cross.) Their relationship embraced the intimacy of close friends, re-united. “Can you hold this cross for a while, Tracey? I’ll be back love.” He asked. So I see myself as we did some directing toward “loyalty” while marriage and parenting continued “normally.”

Things have changed now, hurricane force winds blow and rain beats down with steel-like pellets. No more “directing ” here, putting every ounce of effort in keeping it upright. Their relationship is strained to a breaking point. Then I see him face down. The Cross fallen. I am really seeing myself there. My heart breaks. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve left my guard post, collapsed in exhaustion and/or grief.

I “wake up” stunned. I see the cross laying fallen. I remember a faint sense of duty. I’ve got to pick up the conviction of privilege before I can rise and pick up the shared suffering of the Cross. I do pick up the cross of my disease to begin the cycle again.  (I can even relate to the bad hair day.) Their relationship is restored. When The Lord says,”You must have been through so much. . .” I just melt and start pouring out all my woes.” Thank God for the pervasive grace and mercy of our Lord and Savior.

We’ve all have crosses to bear. Each cross-bearing circumstance is unique and the person’s tolerance is different based on many determining factors. Today’s manna moment normalizes our humanity and glorifies the divinity of Christ. At some point we may “direct” with a smile only later to collapse. Only Christ can hold the weight of the Cross. But we are exposed to the suffering of the Cross to teach us our weakness and the supremity of His strength. In the process of carrying our own Cross we learn things about ourselves and our Lord, without which, we would never have the intimate knowledge of the holding empowerment with the Cross.