SUCCESS!!


On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives. Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives. Alcoholics Anonymous pg 86

Roll your works upon the Lord [commit and trust them wholly to Him; He will cause your thoughts to become agreeable to His will, and] so shall your plans be established and succeed. Proverbs 16:3 Amp

 Thank you Lord for this day you have made, I will rejoice and be glad. Father God, I ask you to direct my thinking. I commit my day to you and trust that you will direct my paths and cause my thoughts to become agreeable to your will. I thank you that today will be a successful day because I follow you in all areas of my life. In Jesus Name, Amen!

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Selfishness!


Selfishness, self-centeredness! That, we think, is the root of our troubles. Driven by a hundred forms of fear, self-delusion, self-seeking, and self-pity, we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate. Sometimes they hurt us, seemingly without provocation, but we invariably find that at some time in the past we have made decisions based on self which later placed us in a position to be hurt. Alcoholics Anonymous pg 62

 

If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness. James 3:13-18 NLT

 

 Father God, I thank you for this day. I pray Father that you would free me of the bondage of self and remove any jealousy that has entered my heart. I pray Father that I would walk in your wisdom and maintain an attitude of humility. Help me to be gentle at all times and with all people today knowing that you show no favoritism nor should I. Help me to full of mercy and good deeds and to live my life to honor you. In Jesus Name, Amen!

My Will, Your Will or God’s Will


There is a common misconception about God’s will that is very prevalent today. It’s the idea that everything that happens in life is God’s Will. I’m sure you have heard people say when something bad happens, “Well, I don’t know why God wanted that to happen but it must have been His will.” I used to believe that conception too until I learned better. I hadn’t stopped to consider that someone else’s will could have been involved. I know that it is my self-will that got me in all the trouble I got in with and without alcohol in my life. I also know that at times, like the Big Book says, I was like a tornado in the lives of those people around me. Now, I don’t believe it was Gods’ Will for them to get mistreated by me. I believe I took my will and hurt and damaged people, places and things around me and that’s why I must make amends. My will caused the pain and damage, not God.

Now, when I hear people say “that must have been Gods will”, I cringe because I know that God is good. God gave everyone a free will to choose and make decisions in life. There are bad things that happen in life as a result of our or someone else’s bad choices and then we blame it on God saying He had a reason for it and God didn’t have anything to do with it. Is the situation or circumstance happening because of someone’s self-will run riot. We are not puppets. God doesn’t make us do anything. We choose. We can choose to listen to Him and receive His guidance or we can choose to ignore Him and go at it alone. There are consequences to both choices. I’ve heard people get put in jail for DUI and then pray for God to deliver them out of jail and when He doesn’t they say it must be God’s will that they are in jail. How untrue is that! They are in jail because they got drunk and broke the law. God had nothing to do with it but now God is getting blamed for not rescuing them out of the pit they dug for themselves as a direct result of their actions. Bad decisions and bad choices can affect others and sometimes permanently. It doesn’t mean it was Gods will for them. It means that someone else made a bad choice and because of it someones’ life is affected. I do believe that God can use a bad situation to bring about good results but He didn’t cause the bad situation. God is good all the time. The Bible says that He is light and there is no darkness in Him at all. The Bible tells us that He has a good purpose and a plan for everyone. Does that mean everyone will have a good life and fulfill His plan. No, because not everyone will choose His way and God allows everyone to make their own choice. God has already chosen us but we must choose Him and allow Him access into our lives. We need to take into account that just as our will affects others their will can directly affect our lives as well. We need to give God credit for the good things He brings in our lives and stop blaming him for our self-will and the self-will of others.

Everything that happens in life is not necessarily Gods will. The real question we should ask is : Is this My Will, Your Will or Gods Will?

 

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God’s Will or My Will?


How do I know if this is God’s Will or My will? In talking with people, I hear this all the time and I have to say that I used to wonder this all the time myself. Step 11 says to pray for knowledge of Gods will and the power to carry it out. For a long time I had no idea of what Gods will was. I thought if things went well for me then that was God’s will and if they didn’t work out that it wasn’t Gods will…somewhat confusing to say the least because I never knew if it was God’s will or not until I saw the results. It was a sigh of relief to learn that I really could know Gods will and that God wanted everyone to know it.

As I sought God more, I learned that the meaning of ” Testament” is will or covenant. I thought about how when my daughter was born my husband and I decided to get our Wills made up. In case anything ever happened to us, we wanted to decide who would care for her. It was our will written down by a lawyer so that after our death someone could carry out our wishes. I learned that the Bible was Gods will written down by men so that we could know what He wants us to do. There is His Old Testament and His New Testament or you might say: His Old Will and His New Will. To learn God’s Will, I just needed to read the Bible but I had no idea where to start. I had heard that in the early days of AA, before there was a Big Book, that they read from the Book of James so I started there. I realized very quickly that a lot of what I was reading was principles I had learned and had already begun practicing in the rooms of AA. But, I still had that nagging question: How do I know if I’m really hearing God or if it’s just me. Then I was shown the answer.

For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Hebrews 4:12 NLT

The Word of God, the Bible, is the way to discern whether or not it’s just me or its God. The Word is sharp enough to cut or divide between my soul and my spirit. My soul is my thoughts, my will and my emotions. My spirit is who I really am. I am a spirit with a soul and I live in a body. The Bible says that the word of God is so sharp that it can actually divide or cut between my soul and my spirit. If my actions and thoughts line up with the Word which are Gods thoughts then its God. If my emotions and thoughts don’t line up with the Word then it’s my will. Simple, yes. Easy..no. So now you might ask.. How do I know if my thoughts line up with God’s word? Well..that means that you must spend time reading it. You can read it by book or you can look up topics just like some of our popular meditation books. We don’t have to wonder whether something is Gods will or not we can go to His Will and look it up. He wants us to know His will so that we know what to do in EVERY situation we find ourselves in. God has something to say about everything we face..anger, loneliness, love, frustration, jealousy, relationships, sickness, money, family, children, employment etc.. You might try looking in your bible for topical references to find the scriptures that deal with what you need. If you need help, just message me and I’d be glad to help.

Next up: My Will, Your Will or God’s Will

Obediance: So, how important is it really?


The word obedience doesn’t seem to bring to mind any warm fuzzies BUT it is something that is really important and needs to be talked about. Everyday we have opportunities to obey or disobey and we normally don’t even give it a second thought. How many times have we gone over the speed limit? Do we think twice about it? Not most of the time. I’ve even heard it said that going 5 miles over the speed limit is acceptable. I’ve been guilty of it myself. Or how about getting in the grocery aisle with more than 10 items saying to yourself that 11 or 12 is ok too? What about seeing a sign that says No -______ and we think well its just a little..it won’t really matter. What about the little white lie? Does that count? What we are doing is doubting the authority that’s making the rules. We attempt to determine what their REAL motives were so that we can absolve ourselves from having to follow it.

 

How much faith do we put in other peoples words? Our own word? Gods Word? Do we question Gods Word and wonder Yeah, but did He really mean it?

 

Matthew 7:24-27 NLT

24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.”

 

Jesus says here that someone who listens to His word and His teaching and does it is wise because when the storms of life hit the house will stand because it is built on Him. He says that those who hear and don’t obey are foolish and they will not be standing when the storms of life come. Gods word is our manual of life. When we read His word we need to put into practice what we’re reading so that we can be prepared to deal with life.

 

Luke 6:46-49 NLT

46 “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? 47 I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. 48 It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.”

 

I love this account in Luke. Here Jesus is saying that people are calling him Lord, Lord with their mouth but they aren’t doing what He says. How many times do we ask someone for help and then not do what they say? How many times have we done that to God? How many times have we read the solution in the Word and then thought Does it really mean that…surely a little is ok, right?

 

This same principle is in James 1:22-26

 

22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. 24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.

 

When we come to church and hear the Word or when we are listening to a preacher preach the word we need to take the word and do it not just hear it. And the Bible also says that we will be blessed for doing it. Praise God. When you go to college to get a degree you read and study a lot of textbooks but you don’t have the opportunity to put it into practice until your on the job. Then you must apply what you’ve been taught and occasionally you’ll need to refer back to those books. The same is true with Gods Word. We use it as our manual for life. We study it and then we take what we’ve learned and we apply it to our life and if we have any doubt we go back to the Word and look it up.

 

Obediance. So, How Important is it Really? It’s the difference between life and death, blessing and cursing, your house standing or your house falling.
Its important to God.

 

John 14:21

21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.”

 

John 14:23-24

23 Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. 24 Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.

 

Jesus clearly says that those who love Him will obey Him. ALL who love me will do what I say. He is connecting love and obedience. In verse 24 He states that the words are not His own but come from the Father. So the Father also says that If we love Him then we will obey Him.

 

John 21:15-17 NLT
 15 After breakfast Jesus asked Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?[a]”  “Yes, Lord,” Peter replied, “you know I love you.”    “Then feed my lambs,” Jesus told him.  16 Jesus repeated the question: “Simon son of John, do you love me?”    “Yes, Lord,” Peter said, “you know I love you.”    “Then take care of my sheep,” Jesus said.  17 A third time he asked him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”    Peter was hurt that Jesus asked the question a third time. He said, “Lord, you know everything. You know that I love you.”    Jesus said, “Then feed my sheep.

 

Jesus speaking to Peter kept asking him if Peter loved Him and Peter kept saying Yes. And Jesus told him to feed His Sheep. He was saying Peter if you love me then obey me.

In marriage ceremonies now…there is a growing number of women that don’t want to say that they will honor and obey their husbands. They see that as some kind of scheme to control them. But God has made the husband to be the head of the wife. Its Gods design. The woman will want to obey her husband because she loves him and wants to please him and a Godly man won’t misuse his wife.

1 John 2;3-6 3 And we can be sure that we know him if we obey his commandments. 4 If someone claims, “I know God,” but doesn’t obey God’s commandments, that person is a liar and is not living in the truth. 5 But those who obey God’s word truly show how completely they love him. That is how we know we are living in him. 6 Those who say they live in God should live their lives as Jesus did.

So, how important Is it? How does God view obedience. Does he think it has a sliding scale or is it black and white to Him. Those who obey God know Him and love Him and those who don’t prove that they don’t love Him. Our love is measured by our obedience. Why should I walk in love with everyone? Because Jesus commanded us to and because I love Him I want to do things that please Him. Love compels me to obey.

So, How Important is it Really? Obediance.

Salvation rests upon it. There is only ONE way to heaven. Not every road leads there. We can’t just come to God and expect to get to heaven. He’s got a road and we must be obedient to His way of doing things. God thinks its important.

Hearing Gods Voice in the Midst of Discouragement


11 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the LORD.” And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
13 So it was, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave.

1 Kings 19:11-13a

 

If you read this chapter, you’ll see that Elijah had become discouraged. He just had a great victory and killed all of the prophets of Baal but was now being sought by Jezebel to kill him. He was fearful and ran away to hide. He prayed to God to let him die because he’d had enough. (Have you ever become so discouraged?) An angel woke him and told him to eat and to go meet God at Mount Sinai. When Elijah arrived, God asked him what he was doing there and Elijah whined to him about how the Israelites had broken their covenant with Him and killed all the prophets and he felt like he was the only one left that was serving the Lord. He was discouraged and ready to quit and die. Elijah desperately needed some encouragement from the Lord and this is where the scriptures are found that we read earlier. He told Elijah to go out and stand on the mountain and He would pass by. But it wasn’t the spectacular that comforted Elijah. 3 Spectacular events happened before Elijahs comfort and direction came in the form of Gods still small voice. It was only at hearing the still small voice that Elijah wrapped his face in his mantle and knew he’d heard from God. Notice how he didn’t move during the windstorm or the earthquake or the fire. He didn’t run and seek shelter nor did he lift his hands in praise at the mighty show of Gods power. BUT as he heard His voice then he acted. I wonder how many of us react to the wind or maybe stand through the wind but give up during the earthquake..or stay strong during the wind and the earthquake but then let the fires melt us. How would we be if we withstood it all and then heard Gods voice and acted. One word from God can change our lives forever Sometimes we look at or for the spectacular and miss what God is trying to tell us. Instead of looking to our outward circumstances and trying to find a sign from God we need to be still and listen to the small whisper of God speaking to our heart. If we can’t hear him then maybe we are paying too much attention to the sounds of the wind and fire and we need to cast our care on the Lord and Be still knowing He is God. Are you listening?

 

Father God, I pray for all those reading this today that are discouraged. I pray Father that you would encourage them and comfort them that they may know how much you love and value them. I ask you Father to speak to their hearts and help them to be still and know your presence. In Jesus Name, Amen!

 

Be still and know that I am God

Psalm 46:10

Seek God


But there is One who has all power that One is God. May you find Him now!  Alcoholics Anonymous pg 59

You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13

Father God , I thank you that as I draw near to you that you draw near to me. I thank you Lord for this beautiful day and I thank you Lord that when I found you I found life. I pray Father that I will pause today in times of indecision and seek you with all my heart and I will find the answers and power I need in you. In Jesus Name, Amen.