Archive | November 2009

Faith and Endurance

James 2-18 (New Living Translation)

2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. 6 But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. 7 Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

9 Believers who are poor have something to boast about, for God has honored them. 10 And those who are rich should boast that God has humbled them. They will fade away like a little flower in the field. 11 The hot sun rises and the grass withers; the little flower droops and falls, and its beauty fades away. In the same way, the rich will fade away with all of their achievements.

12 God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. 13 And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. 14 Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. 15 These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.

16 So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. 17 Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow. 18 He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession.

21 Ways to Give Up a Bad Habit

You Can Start Right Now
By Chris Prentiss Is there a habit or behavior you would like to change?

There is room in all of our lives to say goodbye to a limiting habit and adopt a new and healthier one. Yet making and keeping a commitment can be challenging. Stepping up to the plate to create real change takes more than just courage. It takes consistency, realism, support, and a willingness to discover the underlying issues. These 21 tips will help you reinvent your life with more zest and create new habits that will last.

Stop Punishing Yourself

Don’t beat yourself up for having unhealthy habits. Guilt and shame are poor motivators. Instead, congratulate yourself for recognizing the need to change and wanting to improve.


Take Control of Your Thoughts

Your thoughts are powerful tools for reinventing your world. Choose the thoughts you will focus on. As you notice negative thoughts telling you it’s too hard to change, gently redirect them, as many times as it takes, to the positive track of “I can do this.”

Challenge Limiting Beliefs from the Past

Beware of your old conditioning and limitations that family or friends may have imposed on you. A wonderful world of total possibility surrounds you. Your goals are more achievable when you believe they are.

Make Commitments and Keep Them

There is only one constant in your life and in every plan you make: YOU.
You must be able to rely on yourself totally to see your plans through to success. When you follow through on your commitments, you will also gain the respect of others.

Write Down Your Intention and Focus on it Every Day

To stay focused on your new choices, clearly and concisely write down exactly what you want your new behavior to look like. Carry a copy of that statement with you and tape it on objects like your mirror, the ceiling over your bed, the dashboard of your car, your desk or schoolbooks. Keep your new goals front and center.


Observe Your Attitude

Your attitude plays a huge role in your success. Are you determined and excited about moving ahead with your new goal, or are you resentful and easily demoralized? Are you eager to be on this new path of self-development, or do you see this as an overwhelming chore? The more you face the task with anticipation, expecting a good result, the more successful you will be.


Seek the Right Kind of Support

The help and encouragement of a buddy, mentor, or professional can go a long way—as long as they believe in you and your goal 100 percent. Choose friends and mentors who will never tear you down but always cheer you on.


Create Your Own Affirmations

Reinforce your desires, goals, and commitments by creating a short, inspiring statement that is positive and captures the feeling of well-being you want to achieve from your new habit. Throughout the day, say your affirmation aloud with exuberance. As you do, be sure to deeply feel what you are saying as being true for you.


Visualize Your Perfect Day—Every Day

When you first awake, take two minutes to visualize what life would be like for you if you were already embracing your new habit. See yourself moving through your daily activities as that person—strong, powerful, and in control.


Act the Part

As you go through your day, act as if you have attained your goal. Be that kind of person in your words, behavior, and attitude. As a result, others will begin to see you as you want to be, creating a wonderful circle of reinforcement.

Take One Step at a Time

Reaching any worthwhile goal requires many small steps. Set yourself up for success by breaking down the path to acquiring your new habit into realistic, attainable steps that are just enough for you. Mastering one small step at a time will also keep you from getting discouraged.


Review Your Day

At the end of each day, sit quietly and reflect on how well you did in taking the next step toward your goal and practicing your new habit. Ask yourself what you can do better next time to insure that you will behave or respond in the way you want to. Focus on that tomorrow.


Choose Your Friends Carefully

Old habits are often tied to former routines, friends, and hangouts. Creating a new lifestyle comes with new choices. Choose friends and associates who model the new way of life you want to lead.


Get Your Heart Beating

Find a form of exercise that is fun for you—and do it. Getting energy flowing through your body regularly will help you feel strong and more confident.


Get Back into Balance

Unhealthy habits, anything from eating too much greasy food to drinking too much alcohol or caffeine to regularly staying up late, can be a reaction to an imbalance you are unconsciously trying to right—anything from hypoglycemia to an overactive thyroid to sadness or heartbreak. Get help in addressing the underlying imbalance and you may no longer need to overindulge.


Speak in Positive Terms

When you think and speak in a judgmental or negative way, you produce negative results. The opposite is also true. By replacing negative language with positive speech, you will find your thoughts clarified, your speech uplifting, and the response of others rewarding.


Eliminate “I’ll try” From Your Vocabulary

When we say, “I tried,” in the past tense, it means we have failed at reaching a goal. Likewise, saying “I’ll try” is a way of excusing ourselves from doing the hard work of accomplishing whatever it is we are setting out to do. When you make a commitment or promise to yourself or others, say instead, “I will do it!”


Face Obstacles Rather than Sidestep Them

You will most likely meet challenges along the way to acquiring your new habit. If events occur that get in the way of you accomplishing your goal, rather than complaining or trying to sidestep them see them as perfect opportunities to focus your attention more strongly in the right direction.


Expect Help at Crucial Moments

The Universe is on your side because you’re a part of it. When you come to a point where you have given your all to reach your goal but are running out of steam, trust that something will happen to help you get past the tipping point.


See Your Striving as Part of the Big Picture

Deciding to adopt a healthy habit is part of the larger framework of your life. The work you put into hitting your target will help you build the strength, wisdom, and power to attain this goal as well as greater accomplishments. The path to your goal is as important as the goal itself.


Practice, Practice, Practice

No new habit comes without hard work. If you fall back into your old ways, don’t condemn yourself and don’t give up. Like everything else, the more you practice your new behavior, the more expert you will become at doing it. Practice consistently and soon it will become second nature.

Chris Prentiss is the co-director of the Passages Addiction Cure Center in Malibu and the author of The Alcoholism and Addiction Cure; Be Who You Want, Have What You Want; Zen and the Art of Happiness; and other books on personal growth. For more information, visit www.PowerPressPublishing.com

Sin List

Do you know your sins?
Do you know all that’s considered a sin?

Check this SIN LIST courtesy of Word of God International Ministries

15 Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. 16 For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.
1 John 2:15-16 (New Living Translation)

Why Did Jesus Die?

“He was despised and rejected— a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.

Yet it was our weaknesses he carried; it was our sorrows[a] that weighed him down. And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God, a punishment for his own sins! But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the sins of us all.

He was oppressed and treated harshly, yet he never said a word. He was led like a lamb to the slaughter. And as a sheep is silent before the shearers, he did not open his mouth. Unjustly condemned, he was led away. No one cared that he died without descendants, that his life was cut short in midstream. But he was struck down for the rebellion of my people. He had done no wrong and had never deceived anyone. But he was buried like a criminal; he was put in a rich man’s grave.

But it was the Lord’s good plan to crush him and cause him grief. Yet when his life is made an offering for sin, he will have many descendants. He will enjoy a long life, and the Lord’s good plan will prosper in his hands. Isaiah 53:3-10 (New Living Translation)

Kissed or Rebuked?


“Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but the kisses of an enemy are lavish and deceitful.” Proverbs 27:6 (Amplified Bible)

Some people would rather be “kissed, than rebuked”. If someone corrects us when we are wrong, we should not be offended but take it as a learning experience. Wrong is WRONG!! Regardless to who is it. Be humble and accept correction when we are wrong. Cautions and warnings litter the scriptures concerning being humble and repentant when we are wrong. Be warned again if you get mad at someone when they tell you the TRUTH about something you’ve done that was in fact wrong!!! Don’t get mad. You know you did wrong, just accept the correction because it is from GOD. NO, you are NOT being judged, and if you are it is RIGHTEOUS. Do not become like——>

2 Timothy 4:1-4 (Amplified Bible)
1CHARGE [you] in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, Who is to judge the living and the dead, and by (in the light of) His coming and His kingdom:

2Herald and preach the Word! Keep your sense of urgency [stand by, be at hand and ready], whether the opportunity seems to be favorable or unfavorable. [Whether it is convenient or inconvenient, whether it is welcome or unwelcome, you as preacher of the Word are to show people in what way their lives are wrong.] And convince them, rebuking and correcting, warning and urging and encouraging them, being unflagging and inexhaustible in patience and teaching.

3For the time is coming when [people] will not tolerate (endure) sound and wholesome instruction, but, having ears itching [for something pleasing and gratifying], they will gather to themselves one teacher after another to a considerable number, chosen to satisfy their own liking and to foster the errors they hold,

4And will turn aside from hearing the truth and wander off into myths and man-made fictions.

Don’t be deceived by pride.

“Be honest in your judgment and do not decide at a glance (superficially and by appearances); but judge fairly and righteously.” John 7:24 (Amplified Bible)

Courtesy of Kelvin R. Jordan

If My Life…


If my life was a credit report and I was trying to obtain Salvation, based on my score I wouldn’t get it.

My history shows that I’ve been delinquent in Praise, past due in Prayer, my worship has been in collections and I’ve missed a few payments (tithes) or only paid half (you know how we put $20 in the basket and feel like we’ve done God a favor).

Not to mention that my debt (sin) to income (blessings) ratio is too high.

BUT

I thank God that I was able to file bankruptcy (repentance) and it
cleared me of all of my debt (sin). Now I have a co-signer (Jesus)
whose score is FLAWLESS…. Not one blemish (sin) on his report.

So now….now I QUALIFY for EVERYTHING! Most importantly
I’ve inherited Eternal Life and I didn’t have to put one penny down.
All of my closing costs were covered when Jesus laid down His life for
me!!!!

I hear that my future home has all of the upgrades too.
Hardwood floors? Please…I’ll be walking on streets of gold!!

Thank you Lord for your Unmerited Mercy, Grace & Favor!!!!

Be blessed, we serve an Awesome God!

Prayer

Prayer shared by Derrick Rosborough

LORD, however well hidden, things have a way of becoming known at the most inconvenient times. Help me not do anything I would be ashamed of anyone else knowing. And give me strength to face what I have hidden in the past and do whatever I need to do to make it right now. I do not want anything to hinder or taint what You have called me to do. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Exodus 2:11-14 (New Living Translation)
11 Many years later, when Moses had grown up, he went out to visit his own people, the Hebrews, and he saw how hard they were forced to work. During his visit, he saw an Egyptian beating one of his fellow Hebrews. 12 After looking in all directions to make sure no one was watching, Moses killed the Egyptian and hid the body in the sand.

13 The next day, when Moses went out to visit his people again, he saw two Hebrew men fighting. “Why are you beating up your friend?” Moses said to the one who had started the fight.

14 The man replied, “Who appointed you to be our prince and judge? Are you going to kill me as you killed that Egyptian yesterday?”

Then Moses was afraid, thinking, “Everyone knows what I did.”

You Are Closer Than You Think

God has put dreams and desires in every person’s heart. We all have goals we want to accomplish and situations we are believing will be turned around. Sometimes it seems to take longer than we thought. Sometimes things don’t work out the way we planned, and it’s easy to lose enthusiasm. Negative thoughts come to us that say, “It’s never going to change.” “You’re never going to get well.” “You’re never going to get out of debt.” If we’re not careful, we’ll get discouraged and end up just settling where we are. Many times, people miss out on God’s best simply because they give up too soon. They don’t realize how close they are to their victory.

Friend, don’t let that be you today! Don’t give up just because things seem hard. You are closer than you think! You’ve invested so much and you never know, just another few more days of believing, another few weeks of doing the right thing, another few months of staying in faith, and you could see that situation turn around. Remember, God is on your side! Keep standing and keep believing because you are closer than you think to fulfilling every desire He’s placed inside of you!

A PRAYER FOR TODAY

“Father God, today I come to You again, believing that You are working behind the scenes on my behalf. Give me Your strength to keep moving forward into the place of victory You have for me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”