January 22, 2008
The mortgage guys sure messed-up our economy through their greed and dishonesty by arranging inappropriate loans for under-financed home-wanters. Now many are hurting with this economic downturn.
Being unemployed, or under-employed, or loosing your house or an investment – is VERY tough to deal with. Been there, done some of that! You have to constantly encourage yourself and not let the Enemy depress you with his lies. You are not responsible for the economic downturn that has caused your trade to tank! You are NOT less of a man because you are in financial difficulties. Keep pressing-on.
Reminds me of Rita Springer’s song, I Have To Believe. It has at this time become one of my favorite songs of all time. It is so encouraging to me, sends shivers down my back, and moves me every time I hear it, or sing it myself. (You don’t want to be there to hear me!) Try to get the CD and listen to it till you know it by heart. It basically quotes Scripture! Quote Scripture through this song. 🙂
We are continually bombarded by the fiery darts of the Evil One. And when these little pricks hit us, we need to put-out the flames, quickly. It´s easier to put them down when they’re small pricks, so don’t let them grow into smouldering blazes. Doubts, depression, feelings of inadequacy, troubles, unruly kids…, when they come at us, we “have to declare” the truths of God, and we have to choose Truth over lies. You’ve got to buy this song! It is terrific:
I Have to Believe by Rita Springer (ritaspringer.com website)
I have to believe that He sees my darkness
I have to believe that He knows my pain
I have to lift up my hands to worship
Worship His name
I have to declare that He is my refuge
I have to deny that I am alone
I have to lift up my eyes to the mountains
It’s where my help comes from
He said that He’s forever faithful
He said that He’s forever true
He said that He can move mountains
And if He can move mountains
He can move my mountain
He can move Your mountain too
I have to stand tall when the wind blows me over
I have to stand strong when I’m weak and afraid
I have to grab hold, hold of the garments
Garments of praise
I have to sing praise when the hour is midnight
He unlocks the chains that bind up my soul
My sin and my shame, He has forgiven, and made me whole
I have to believe
My sermon for the day> a bit of my philosophy of life…
Basically, we earthly creatures are born under God’s judgement, unworthy of Him, condemned to an eternity without Him. Hell. It will be life without God, forever – getting just what many people chose while on earth: No God.
You can choose life, or you can choose death. Choose life under God, or choose life void totally of the graces of God our Creator. It´s your choice. Take it or leave it. But study the Bible before you stumble away from it and loose your chance to choose.
Choose life with God and His goodness,
or choose “life” without God, eternally without any good,
because all that is good comes from God.
Jesus Christ came to earth as God-man in order to make it possible for mankind to be forgiven by God. We can either choose to follow God’s way, or make our own way. But only God’s way through Christ will ever make us acceptable to a perfect God. Kind of a narrow way, eh? Yep. That was His idea, not ours.
When we choose to yield our life to Christ, He changes us completely (I Corinthians 5:17…). In an instant, in that specific moment in time, we are forever changed. Forever. And nothing can change that! (Romans 8:..35…)
We still look the same, smell the same, and have the same human ills, but in that moment in time – God flips a switch, makes our spirit alive (which is necessary because God is a spirit), and He, our Creator, THE CREATOR, at that moment makes us brand new creatures.
He made all there is, anywhere, and He has so chosen to make this THE WAY for all his creation. His choice, not ours. We are the clay, and HE is the potter. Don’t forget that. Who do you think you are, anyway? God? No. You are not. You were merely a lump in His hand, but He has plans for good for you. Your choice. Now it IS your choice. Believe or, not. Your choice.
When we choose to accept the gift of God, things happen. Real things. Eternal things. (Not before we choose.)
At the moment when we say yes to God’s gift of salvation (His forgiveness of sin), from that moment in time He accepts us as His Sons (not merely creatures of His creation – but His flesh and blood sons and daughters). From that moment on, we no longer are merely normal human beings. At that moment we are made brand new creatures inside, destined to live and rule with Christ:
We no longer have to yield to sin (Romans 6)
We no longer are under any condemnation whatsoever from God (Romans 8:1)
(So don’t listen to Satan’s lies when he condemns you when you sin; that is NOT God speaking guilt to you! God calls us to repent, yes. But He does not condemn us or shame us.)
And the Spirit of God in that instant makes our (formerly dead) spirit alive, and somehow, from then on, He lives inside us. You do not need to understand it, anymore than any scientist understands what electricity is. They just believe in it, watch what it does, and go with it. Trust God and draw close to Him.
“All things have changed….” Once that change happens, then a growing and learning process begins. And that is where we all are until we get a new body and a new earth. But that comes later. In the meantime, “it ain’t easy!”
And although “it ain’t easy…”, we now can talk to God, moment to moment, and He hears and cares and answers us, because now we are His sons and daughters.
Christians (“little Christs”; followers of Christ) are still humans, subject to this earthly experience, and cannot stop: disease, sickness, economic woes, accidents, calamities, death and taxes! “The rain falls on the just and the unjust alike” (Proverbs…), so there are no guarantees about any part of our life here – except that He loves us and cares for us in the midst of whatever He allows to come our way, and our eternity with Him can never be taken away from us, ever (Romans 8:…v35…)!
There are many promises to hold onto, and He is intimately involved in our day-to-day living, and God does answer prayer – but nowhere does His Word say that we can just pray and everything will then be hunky-dory. But in the midst of all we experience: His Spirit comforts, guides, convicts of sin, forgives, restores, answers prayer, heals, strengthens, gives wisdom; and the fruit of the Spirit is terrific: love, joy, patience, perseverance…(Galatians 5:22, 23…).
So hang-in there. And don’t spend what you don’t got!
Love you, Danny. Your bro’,
About our kids: We are not responsible for how other people run their own lives. (I almost said “ruin” their lives!) We can do the best we can for our kids, spouse, friends, family, neighbors, and country, but they can chose to do whatever the evil they desire to do. It is their choice: good or evil. They are responsible for their own lives.
Pray for them, but don’t let them pile on you …guilt and remorse. Be patient. Eventually they might “come-around”. Maybe, maybe not, but you are not responsible for the choices of the adults who used to be under your roof! They are out of the nest. If they don’t show you respect (“honor your mother and father…”), it hurts, but don’t become a puppet on a string for them. You have your own life to live and cannot go on rescuing them. Everyone is responsible for their own life, and what they do with it. Plain and simple.
I figure it’s just like how you deal with an alcoholic or drug addict. Don’t enable them by giving them money; don’t pay their bills, for anything. Don’t coddle them. And don’t take their crap. Don’t yell and scream. Be gentle and kind, but be firm. -End of sermon. 🙂