Can we really overstress the importance of the here and now? I’d say I spend far too much time focused on a future they may never come, and far too little time focusing on the present that is at hand. What if I had a proper understanding of allowing interruptions but not distractions? What if I spent more time in the presence of God instead of rushing to the next thing? No one in the history of mankind ever left God’s presence worse off.
Category Archives: Relationships
Being Present in the Moment Podcast
Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, God, podcast, Thanksgiving
That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong. – 2 Corinthians 12:10 NLT
This has been one of my favorite verses from Paul. I think most people who grew up in church know it. As I said to start the year off, I really need to slow down with the Scriptures that have been so familiar to me. It’s easy to brush past them because I know them.
I’m stuck on that word “pleasure” today. Paul said he takes pleasure in weakness and insults. Is it just me, or does pleasure not seem like it fits there? I could say I accept weakness and insults. Maybe I could say I understand them. But to take pleasure in them?
Pleasure is a feeling of happy satisfaction and enjoyment. So Paul was happy about his weaknesses and insults? He found joy in hardships that he suffered? How is this possible? Doesn’t this seem crazy??? There are actually two keywords that make this make sense “for Christ.”
Paul teaches us that we can be more than just ok or simply accept when hardships come. He teaches us that we can actually have joy and happiness in weakness when it’s for Christ. That’s the key. We can not only endure but enjoy our weaknesses when they point people to Jesus.
Community and Unity
As much as we like to believe we can do life on our own, it’s not true. Just read Ecclesiastes 4:9,12
Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.
Ecclesiastes 4:9, 12 NLT
Clearly, we were made for community. Why do we need community?
1) Accountability: I’ve done so much better in life when people hold me accountable. I don’t have to like it, but I do know I need it.
2) Support: When you’re sick or experience the death of a loved one, there’s nothing like community to help you through that difficult time. Community also gives you the opportunity to do the same.
3) God is representative of community. We have the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in God. So when we think of God, we should think of Community and Unity.
Now, do we need any more reason than that to pursue healthy communal relationships?
For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.
Ecclesiastes 3:1 NLT
While Ecclesiastes may feel discouraging, it’s really not. It’s actually quite possible to find encouragement in the book. There is plenty of wisdom in it, and where there is wisdom, we can be encouraged.
Chapter three talks about there being a time for everything. There is a season for everything. It’s hard to believe or accept that there is a time for life and death, crying and laughing, love and hate, and a time for peace and war. But rather than be discouraged by this, what would happen if we embraced it?
Maybe what makes life difficult is not understanding the times. With that said, God knows the time for all of these things. It’s not up to us to figure it out or try to manipulate it, but to accept it. In accepting this, perhaps we can embark on a journey of peace about timing. After all, God has the perfect timing.
Allow the Interruption
No one has ever or will ever leave the presence of God worse. God is so patient with me as I learn how to stop being so uptight. He’s so patient in teaching me that my schedule isn’t the most important thing.
I read an excerpt from “The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry.” In it, he says “allow the interruptions.” That really struck me because, more than likely, our opportunities to minister can come in the form of an interruption. When a crisis hits, it’s not a scheduled event, so how important is it to be present for a person when it happens? Allow the interruption, but not the distraction is a good motto.
God will interrupt your day. He’ll interrupt your schedule and will inconvenience you. Why? Because He’s teaching you to trust His plan and timing. And really, He longs to spend time with you. Isn’t that cool?
What I’ll say is this. Make sure you make time for God to interrupt. There hasn’t been a person in the history of mankind that stopped to spend time with God and regretted it. Every time any one ever stops to hear God or see Him they end up better and blessed. Read the Bible, Moses, Paul, Peter, Mary, Martha, Jesus, the list goes on and on.
Make time for God. Allow the interruption that could point someone to Him. You won’t regret it.
In the Midst of the Madness Podcast Episode
Do you get discouraged with everything going on in the world? How do you not feel like giving up? Tune in to hear what may be a friendly reminder of our purpose in the midst of the madness.
Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, God, Mistakes, podcast, Relationships, Sin, Wrong
Getaway – Daughters Diary Podcast
Wanna getaway? Do it! It doesn’t have to be a big getaway. Maybe you just need a breather. Tune in to hear about how important it is to recognize when you need that breather.
Filed under Encouragement, podcast, Thanksgiving
Crown or Cancer Podcast
A worthy wife is a crown for her husband,
but a disgraceful woman is like cancer in his bones. – Proverbs 12:4
Am I a crown or a cancer to my husband? Crown or cancer to those around me? Am I a healthy thing or an illness?
Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, God, Mistakes, podcast, Relationships, Sin, Thanksgiving, Wrong
Anything I wanted, I would take. I denied myself no pleasure. I even found great pleasure in hard work, a reward for all my labors. But as I looked at everything I had worked so hard to accomplish, it was all so meaningless—like chasing the wind. There was nothing really worthwhile anywhere.
Ecclesiastes 2:10-11 NLT
Solomon is essentially saying that he enjoyed life. He had everything the world says we should want. He had servants, gardens, food, wine, resources, concubines, and wives. He denied himself no thing that we would deem pleasurable.
He even found pleasure in work, maybe even purpose in it (we’ll talk about work later). In other words, whatever he wanted, he had. Whatever he thought would make him happy, he had. No thing was off limits. Yet, in the end, he still had the same conclusion that he began with. It was all like chasing the wind.
It all brought momentary pleasure but no eternal value. It still left him wanting. So if pleasure didn’t bring a life purpose, he thought work might. Might it?
Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, Mistakes, Relationships, Sin, Thanksgiving, Wrong
Lovestruck- Podcast Book Review
We’re hitting the books with Lovestruck by Sharon Jaynes. I must say, this in-depth description of the Song of Songs gave me a clearer understanding of this biblical book.
Filed under books, Christianity, Encouragement, God, podcast, Relationships, Thanksgiving