Thursday, May 30, 2013

Living by Faith and not by Sight

For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.  –Romans 1:17 (KJV)

I watched a taped sermon recently by a pastor in my area named Phil Hoskins.  Brother Phil told the story of when they were seeking to raise over 6 million dollars for the construction of the church’s new sanctuary.  A church trustee approached him one day and said “Pastor, how are we going to raise all this money?” Phil replied, “We are going to trust God.” The trustee answered, “Has it come to that?”

This story demonstrates the human tendency to trust God as a last resort.  My friends, trusting God is our first option, not our last resort.  So often, after we have exhausted every human effort to get a job done, and then seeing our efforts are failing –  perhaps miserably, we then are willing to trust the Lord.  Recall what God’s Word says about righteousness from God revealed from faith to faith; “the just shall live by faith.” In every situation we are called to trust God rather than ourselves.  Every new challenge presents an opportunity for increased faith and personal growth.  Faith to faith implies an ongoing pattern of trusting the Lord, which involves lifting our eyes from ourselves and looking to God’s power.

How many times have we examined a situation and deemed to too hard, too expensive, too time-consuming, and too complicated?  Consider when a young shepherd boy named David faced a giant named Goliath (I Samuel 17).  David did not linger on what type of stones he should use or whether or not he ought to form a committee to investigate his chances of defeating a giant.  From a purely human standpoint, his odds of killing Goliath were nil.  Instead, David followed God’s leading in his life, which was a standard course of trusting God in every new challenge.  David had killed lions and bears that had attacked his sheep.  Therefore, he knew the Lord has been preparing him all along for this newest test.  He had been living by faith all along, so any new situation was a continuation of this faith principle.  David understood about the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith.

Each day we must make a decision; will we walk by faith or by sight?  Know that our eyes can play tricks on us making obstacles appear larger and more formidable than they actually are.  What looks to be impossible for us is possible in God’s power.  Perhaps your challenge today is simply finding the strength to rise up and face the day.  By faith, God will empower you.  The challenges you will confront might include depression, anxiety, marital problems, conflicts at work, or a rebellious child.  Meet them head-on in God’s strength and with the mind of Christ.

The righteous will live by faith, not by sight.  Do not despair and do not give up.  Trust the Lord today and do not be afraid.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

What is the Driving Force of Your Life?

And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness.  –Genesis 15:6 (KJV)

Believing on the Lord is an act of faith.  When we believe on the Lord, as did Abram of the Old Testament, we are moving beyond knowledge to belief rooted in the heart.  This is the essence of pure faith, for we are trusting in God because of His Word and not on what we can see.  Here we find the New Testament definition of faith at work in our live.  Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”  Abram was willing to trust in God despite the fact that all outward appearances indicated the situation was hopeless.  Faith believes God even when doing so appears to make no sense.

Situations where God calls us to believe on Him regardless of the circumstances will happen frequently in our lives.  The world does not make sense and neither does waiting on the Lord when the evidence before us suggests we should take another course.  Every circumstance where we trust God and wait on His will to be done is a test of faith resulting in spiritual and personal growth.  The way might seem right to us, but may be way out of God’s will.  In the devotional classic, “My Utmost for His Highest,” Oswald Chambers said, “Whenever our right becomes the guiding factor of our lives, it dulls our spiritual insight…the good is always the enemy of the best (May 25).” God desires for us to take the best course for our lives rather what simply appears good.  Trusting God in the challenges of life always leads to God’s glory and our benefit.  Again, we see a Biblical principle at work, for Romans 8:28 says, “All things work together for the good, for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.”

I love to write, but this cannot be the driving force of my life.  I enjoy exercise and a healthy lifestyle, but this cannot be the driving force of my life.  I deeply love my family, the church, and being involved in the community, yet these are not to be the driving forces of my life.  Jesus Christ must be the driving force of my life.  By placing Christ first all other aspects of my life line up in their proper place, just as Jesus promised.  Matthew 6:33 says, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.”

You may be facing circumstances that appear hopeless.  Faith in Christ leads us to look to Him and believe despite what we are seeing before us.  Trust in the Lord, believe, do not doubt, and have faith, for a brighter day is coming.

God bless you today.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Giving Temptation a Wide Berth

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  –James 4:7 (JKV)

I apologize for not providing more devotionals this past week, but this has been an extremely hectic time.  The good news is my schedule should slow down considerably for the next couple of months, which will allow me more time to write.  Thanks as always for your patience and support.

Last week I was catching up on some badly need yard work when I received quite a start.  I was using my push mower to cut around a few corners of the yard when I looked down to see a small snake slithering right between my shoes.  No one heard me because of the noise of the mower, but I actually yelled, “Whoa!”  and jumped backward.  The snake, a garden-variety garter snake, was about a foot and half long.  He was probably just trying to get away from the dangerous machine I was pushing through his territory.  I stopped mowing and allowed the little fellow time to get to safety before I continued cutting the grass. 

I have seen many snakes around our yard, which borders a stretch of thick woods, and to date I have never killed one of them.  I figure they all have their purpose, and as long as they stay out of the house we will get along just fine.  Black snakes will kill mice and other rodents, and many folks around here say they will also keep copperheads away.  This latter benefit seems ample reason to give them a wide berth. 

I think this sums up my feelings about snakes; I am not terrified of them, yet I do give them plenty of room.  I am aware of their dangers, so if I see one I leave it alone.  The Word of God reminds us that if we resist the devil he has no choice but to flee from us.  We do well to avoid compromising situations that could lead us into sin.  Should we see a temptation coming our way, we do not need to move in for a closer look.  Instead, we are better off to keep walking forward while trusting the Lord to give us power to resist.  No one knows how many marriages have been ruined, relationships shattered, and reputations tarnished because someone decided to stop for a closer look at temptation.  Like the large blacksnake that used to live under our carport, I try to give temptation a wide berth.  Moving in for a closer look is bound to create trouble. 

Take note of the first part of James 4:7 about submitting to God.  This is akin to what Jesus said in Matthew 16:24 about denying self, taking up the cross, and following Him.  Submission to God’s will is where we find spiritual freedom.  We are unshackled from the chains of sin, hatred, grudges, bitterness, anger, and fear.  These dark forces will only hold us back.  What Christ offers is the abundant life complete with the daily power source of the Holy Spirit.  Such blessed spiritual freedom comes when we realize we are better off seeking the Lord’s help.

Stand firm, stand strong – not in your strength, but in Christ’s strength.  He gives power to resist anything which might otherwise bring us down and rob us of the joy meant to be ours.  Walk forward, walk straight, and walk humbly before God (Micah 6:8).  The Lord is with us.

God bless you today. 

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Taking up the Cross and Following Christ

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.  –Matthew 16:24 (KJV)

Self-denial is an act of sacrifice.  Human nature seeks to hold onto self, which is always at odds with Christ’s call.  Jesus calls us to cast off the chains of self and walk forward in the blessed freedom He provides.  Why is self so restrictive, burdensome, and stifling to spiritual growth?  The world views self, or living for what we want, as liberating.  However, this is never the case.  Self enslaves us in the chains of seeking our own way without any divine guidance whatsoever.  God will not stop us in this endeavor, for He has endowed humanity with free will.  We are free at any moment to plunge forward on our own accord seeking our own way in life.  Countless people have convinced themselves they are better off seeking to live life their way without any help from God.  This explains why Jesus was so adamant about denying self.  Self-sacrifice is an act of the will, yet the reverse of the world’s view.  Followers of Christ willingly surrender to the Lordship of Christ, which presents the ultimate paradox; we find freedom through complete submission.

My own experience has proven to me how doing as Jesus said, which is denying self, brings about true spiritual freedom.  I still struggle with the pains and challenges of life just as anyone else, yet I possess a divine resource for coping.  This resource transcends human reason and any coping strategies I may employ.  A relationship with Jesus Christ continually produces joy, peace, and spiritual power.  I am free from having to carry my burdens alone.  This is the spiritual freedom denying self brings about.  Were I to go back to the old way, I would then be wrapping myself all over again in the chains of self and all the pain that accompanies it.  Christ empowers us to carry His cross each day, which is a spiritual application of the mind of Christ functioning in all aspects of life.  The implications of this are life changing. 

Rather than wallow in self we walk in spiritual power.  Instead of living in constant fear, we walk in confident faith.  Rather than surrendering to passions that will bring us down in ruin, we resist anything which stands in the way of Christ’s will for us.  Rather than dwelling on past mistakes, we look ahead in the peace of God’s forgiving presence.  The sorrows and agonies of life no longer hold us captive, for we have cast off self as a filthy garment and have put on Christ. 

Therefore, we have a choice.  We can walk in self, which has no power and brings us down, or we can deny self and daily take up the cross of Christ, which empowers and lifts us up to move toward our full potential in Christ.  The choice is clear.  Choose Christ.  Choose life.  Live the abundant life today.

God bless you.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Christ’s Overpowering Love

And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.  –Ephesians 3:19 (KJV)

I have been contemplating lately the power of Christ’s love.  The love of Christ functions in the heart of the believer.  This love then radiates from us and around us.  Jesus said this is how the world will know we are His disciples, if we love one another (John 13:35).  If we are truly in Christ, His love will be evident in our lives.  I can say I love my wife, yet I demonstrate my love in tangible ways.  I help around the house, I tend to her if she is sick, we spend time together, and I do something nice for her on anniversaries and birthdays.  The same goes with my love for family, friends, the church, and those around me who do not know Christ.  We prove love’s authenticity through demonstration. 

Christ did this for the world through sacrificing His life on the cross of Calvary.  Through faith, His love instills itself in the deepest recesses of the heart.  It occurred to me that being empowered by Christ’s love might not be descriptive enough.  I now think in terms of Christ’s love overpowering us.  I have heard people speak of falling into a sin as though they had no power or control of themselves.  They speak correctly, for the flesh also overpowers people.  If we are not careful, the power of the flesh carries us away leaving us helpless to resist.  The consequences can be catastrophic with the loss of marriage, family, and fellowship with God. 

The good news is Christ’s love also overpowers the believer.  Through faith, we walk in the Spirit rather than the flesh, and we walk in faith rather than self.  This overpowering love is Christ’s love functioning in us.  Such love produces peace, for love drives out hatred.  Christ’s love produces joy, for love overcomes worry.  Christ’s love instills confidence, for love overcomes anything which produces bitterness, doubt, and fear.  My prayer for you is to experience the overpowering love of Christ today.  It makes all the difference.

God bless you.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Thanks Mom, for Everything

Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.  –Proverbs 31:30 (KJV)

Another Mother’s Day is past and I again have reflected on how blessed I am to have such a wonderful mother.  Along with being a person of faith, my mother is a dear person who has always loved her family and would do anything for us.  Mom has always been more concerned with others, especially her family, than herself.  Like the woman described in Proverbs 31, my mother has always loved God, loved her family, been a hard worker, and willing to help others in need. 

When I was growing up there were a few hard and fast rules.  These included, but were not limited to, no smoking, no drinking, and no animals in the house.  I have chuckled about how if through some turn of events I had to move back in with my parents these same rules would still be very much in force.  A mom’s job is extremely difficult.  We all need a mother who loves us, and mom gets to be the person who loves us no matter what.  Someone has said home is the place you go when you have nowhere else to go.  Whoever said this must have understood that a mother would be among the first to receive you back. 

My mother always had a colorful way with words; “You and your brother sound like a couple of rhinoceroses crashing through the house!”  
Mom always understood when a sense of urgency was needed; “If you aren’t out of that bed in the next five minutes you are going to get it!”
Mom always had a way of placing things in proper perspective; “I know you think having to learn math is useless, but when you grow up you will use it every day (she was right).”  

I am forever grateful for the lessons she taught me and the love she showed me.  I am also grateful my mother is still here and we get to talk often.  Regardless of whether your mother is with the Lord or you are fortunate enough to still have her here, stop and be thankful for all she taught you.  I read an article recently where someone posed the question as to why we grow up and become so much like our parents.  The writer suggested the reason for this is whether we admit it or not we admire them.  For me, this is true.  Mom, I truly do admire you.  Thanks for everything.

God bless you today.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Living the Christian Life

I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you. 15 For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. 16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.  I Corinthians 4:14-16 (KJV)

Most of us can recall being children and getting a spanking from one of our parents, and you may have heard them say, “This hurts me more than it hurts you.”  We did not believe it as children, but if we eventually had children ourselves then we came to understand it.  We find in this passage in the Bible Paul the Apostle taking a similar attitude.  It pained him to have to be so blunt with the people he loved, yet he knew it was for their own good.  It hurt him more than it hurt them.  He said in verse 14, “I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.”  You can hear it in his words; this hurts me more than it hurts you.  A rebuke is like that; it is often painful to the one who gives it, but if received it is beneficial to those who receive it.  Paul’s concern for these believers was for them to walk in the abundant life of Christ and to walk in the power of the Holy Spirit.  

Colossians 2:6 says, “As you have therefore received Christ Jesus as Lord, so walk ye in Him.” In other words, you are now followers of Jesus Christ, so live like it, act like it, and be like Jesus.  It’s not enough to talk the talk, but we must walk the walk. 

I wonder how many of us would be willing to encourage others to be like us?  The Bible says in verse 16, “I beseech you, be followers (imitators) of me.” The only way we can do this is if we are living lives which are honoring Christ.  Obviously, if we were living ungodly lives, we would not want to tell others to be like us, but if we are striving to be like Christ, then our goal is to be examples of the faith.  Our lives may be the only Bible some people ever read.  You and I might be the only earnest examples of the faith some people ever meet.

This summer will mark for me 28 years of ministry.  Over the years I have seen people who called themselves Christians, yet their lives gave little to no evidence of this statement.  As the Word of God says in another place, “God forbid (Romans 6:2).”   As Christians, our lives are to be characterized by the mind and attitudes of Jesus.  If not, we will be unable to encourage others in the faith.  If we are not seeking to be as Jesus how can we expect others to be like Him?  We must confront a harsh reality; when unbelievers look at us, what do they see?  Do they see vibrant examples of faith?  Or, do they see people who say one thing then do another?  Being witnesses for Jesus Christ involves a clear consistency between word and deed.  Only then can we encourage others to the way of life in Christ. 

Remember, with God this is indeed possible.  Never give up.  Never quit.  Keep trusting and believing. 

God bless you today.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The Value of Truth

Unto thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. O my God, I trust in thee: let me not be ashamed, let not mine enemies triumph over me. Yea, let none that wait on thee be ashamed: let them be ashamed which transgress without cause. Shew me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day.  –Psalm 25:1-5 (KJV)

The heart of Psalm 25 is the desire for the truth of God to reign in the heart.  We as humans will sometimes struggle with holding to the truth.  Consider that we do not have to teach a child to lie.  This seems to come naturally.  Ask a child if he ate the chocolate chip cookie he wasn’t supposed to have.  Many a child will say no, even though there is chocolate all over his mouth.  Not telling the truth seems more natural to us than telling the truth.  David’s desire was to have God’s truth in his heart at all times.  The way we accomplish this is to have the Holy Spirit residing in our hearts 

What a blessing we have as Christians.  We have the Holy Spirit abiding within us.  In the days before the grace of God in Christ entered the world the people of God, who were under the law, had to strive to live up to God’s holy standards.  When they failed, which they often did, they feared of having the Holy Spirit taken from them.  Psalm 51:10 says, “Create in me a clean heart oh God, and renew a right spirit within me.  Cast me not from thy presence oh Lord, and take not thy Holy Spirit from me.  But restore unto me the joy of thy salvation.” God gave the Holy Spirit, He moved in the heart of the believer, yet the Spirit did not indwell (abide) with believers.  Today, thanks to the redemptive work of Christ on the cross, the Holy Spirit has come to abide.  Abide means to remain with us, live with us, and stay with us forever.

In God our fears are overcome.  We can walk forward in faith.  David had very real enemies; there were dangerous men that wanted him dead.  Consider how hurtful this was for David to have a man he had thought of as a father turn on him and want him dead.  This was what happened with King Saul.  He and David had a relationship much like a father and son.  Unfortunately, dark forces overcame Saul and he gave into them.  He became jealous of David to the point of seeking his life.  On two occasions, David could have killed Saul, but he refused to do so because he would not lift a hand against a man whom the Lord had anointed. 

We do well to desire such integrity.  The Lord honors lives devoted to Him and lived in faithfulness.  So, you think this impossible?  In our strength, it is.  However, remember with God all things are possible.  God blesses a close, daily walk with the him.

God bless you today.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Reaping What we Sow

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.  –Galatians 6:7-9 (KJV)

My Uncle Bob is a dear godly man who has preached the Word of God for many decades.  I am told by my mother that her brother was something of a prankster when he was a young man.  She told a story about a passer-by who stopped by the farmhouse where they resided in Eastern Kentucky looking for something to eat.  Uncle Bob, who was a teenager at the time, was the only person home and he did not feel like fixing the traveler some food, so he told him he was not able to help him.  The man then asked if he might just have something to drink.  Uncle Bob looked around and all he could find was a wash basin which family members had been using to wash their hands in that day.  Going to the well and getting fresh water would have been the proper course, but as I said, my uncle was known for playing jokes on people.  Furthermore, going to the well was a lot of trouble.  As the man waited on the porch, Uncle Bob filled a ladle with the soapy water and brought it to the man. 

The man drank the water and asked for another.  Uncle Bob obliged and refilled the ladle from the basin.  The man drank this and then asked for another drink, which was readily provided.  After three ladles full the man appeared to have had enough.  Uncle Bob asked if the man wanted one more drink.  The man replied, “No son, it’s starting to taste a might soapy.” 

As I reflect on this story I consider those who drink from a polluted spiritual water source rather than the pure water of life Jesus Christ offers.  The world constantly seeks to lure us toward all sorts of ways to try and fill our thirst for meaning and purpose.  These will include wealth, possessions, sexuality, drugs, alcohol, and self-centeredness.  Any and all of these can create havoc in our lives and only leave us further confused and empty.  The Word of God warns us not to be deceived.  We will reap what we sow, and if we sow ungodliness and self, then this is what we will reap.  However, if we sow the spiritual blessings of Jesus Christ into our lives we will reap a harvest of peace, joy, hope, and contentment. 

Let us never grow weary in the pursuit of godliness, for in serving the Lord there is purpose and joy.  Keep moving forward and never give up, for the Lord is with us.

God bless you today.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

The Radical Gospel of Jesus Christ

But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.  –Matthew 9:13 (KJV)

“Better watch what you say, they’ll be calling you a radical, a liberal, fanatical, criminal.”  As I reflect on the words to this popular song from the 1970’s, I have to consider how accurately it depicts what people thought about Jesus and the good He was doing in the world. 

Jesus’ teachings were radical.  Jesus said in Matthew 5:44, “But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”  This is as radical today as it was in Jesus’ time.  Human nature leads us to love those who love us and hate those who hate us.  Jesus’  radical teachings on love, grace, mercy, and forgiveness turn such attitudes upside down.  The grace of God, which functions in us through faith in Christ, empowers us to be unshackled from the chains of hatred and vengeance.  Such negative forces will only weigh us down.  Jesus Christ frees us from the powers of darkness, which so often hold us back.

The Pharisees accused Jesus of being liberal.  Jesus was not averse to reaching out to people regardless of who they were, and this was a liberal way of thinking for the time.  “And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.  And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?  (Matthew 9:10, 11).” Jesus went on to remind them that healthy people do not need a doctor, for only sick people need medical attention.  Indeed, if sin is the sickness, Jesus Christ’s mercy and grace are the cure.  

The Pharisees accused Jesus of being fanatical.  How interesting the same people who accused Jesus of being liberal had also accused Him of being fanatical.  The religious leaders of Jesus’ day, focused as they were on keeping the letter of the law, forgot the greater issues of mercy, love, grace, and compassion.  On one occasion, Jesus told them they were willing to strain out a gnat, yet swallow a camel (Matthew 23:23, 24).  This earthy illustration perfectly depicts the problem of self-righteousness.  Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came into the world to save sinners and offer forgiveness.  However, when Jesus did this, the Pharisees accused Him of fanaticism and blasphemy.  “And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee.  And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth (Matthew 9:2, 3).”

The Pharisees accused Jesus of being criminal.  When Jesus broke the Sabbath regulations in favor of meeting human need, the Pharisees accused Him of being a lawbreaker.  “At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn and to eat.  But when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day (Matthew 12:1, 2).” Jesus always placed human need over the letter of the law.

Let us always follow Jesus’ example of reaching out to others in grace and compassion.  The love of Jesus will shine from us when we go and do likewise as Jesus said.  Do not fear being accused of being fanatics or whatever else the world throws at us, for the Lord is right and His Word will prevail.

God bless you today.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

True Happiness in Christ

Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. 4 Delight thyself also in the LORD: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.  –Psalm 37:3, 4 (KJV)

Happiness can be elusive.  One day we might feel a sort of happiness only to feel sorrowful later on.  It would be nice to experience happiness all of the time, yet we realize this is unrealistic.  However, we can have the peace of Christ in our hearts at all times, which in turn leads to happiness even in the midst of our sorrows.  Without Christ in our lives we drift along without any clear purpose or direction.  Does this describe someone you know?  Perhaps it describes you.  To go through life without the stabilizing presence of the Lord can bring about terrible bitterness as many have realized.

For example, H.G. Wells said at age 61, "I have no peace.  All life is at the end of the tether.”  The poet Byron said, "My days are in yellow leaf, the flowers and fruits of life are gone, the worm and the canker, and the grief are mine alone.”  The literary genius Henry David Thoreau said, "Most men live lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."  As I consider these quotes I think of people I have known over the years who appeared to be happy, contented, and satisfied with life.  Yet, this was a fa├žade.  In reality, they were unhappy to the point of misery and had been for some time.  Again, you may be able to relate to this condition.

In Jesus Christ there is peace, contentment, and the power for overcoming the bitterness of life.  God reminds us in His Word that He will grant us the desire of our heart, which will come through faith in Him.  Most people desire happiness and contentment more than anything, and faith in the Lord fills the unhappy void in our lives.  The Lord is ready to shower us with an abundance of spiritual riches.  By faith these blessings are ours to receive. 

Remember, all of us are responsible for our own happiness.  Waiting for other people or situations to make us happy is a bitter pursuit with no good outcome.  George Bernard Shaw stated this in stark terms when he said, “This is the true joy in life, the being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one: the being thoroughly worn out before you are thrown on the scrap heap, and being a force of nature instead of a feverish selfish little clod of ailments and grievances, complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy.”  Harsh words indeed, yet true. 

My hope and prayer is God will empower me not to be a “feverish selfish little clod of ailments complaining that the world will not devote itself to making me happy.”  Instead, I pray I will be a vibrant, selfless, thankful person praising God for the wealth of His blessings in my life.  My, this sounds so much better.

God bless you today.