SHARK ALARM

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Rom 16:17  Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offences, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple. 

Walking along the beach I’ve seen the speed with which surfers and swimmers get out of the water when they hear the shark alarm. Shepherds also are meant to give a shark alarm when they see predatory Christians circling their flock.

Jesus did not just bring affirming encouraging words to the people He shepherded, or His disciples.We are tempted to think that if we are simply loving and encouraging enough that this will solve all the person’s problems. We should build enough emotional and relationship equity with people so that we can bring a correcting word if we need to. However, the fear of losing a relationship and of people walking out of our lives, of losing a client, a parishioner, a follower, prohibits us from saying the hard things.

People will often speak, leaders will even teach about obedience, honour, accountability, until it becomes inconvenient for them to be accountable or to be corrected. It’s very rare to find a person who can be corrected and remain in a positive relationship. Jesus often spoke severely to his disciples, aggressively with the Pharisees, and chided His followers for their shortcomings. He also frequently warned people about those things that would lead them astray.

Thanks for reading this week! If you would like to read some more I also have a brand new post on my Linkedin, you can click here to read it.

If you would like to check out our church, click here to look at visiting a campus. If you can’t be with us on campus why not check out my podcast?

See you in Church!

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Mind Games

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Ephesians 4:23 (NKJV) and be renewed in the spirit of your mind,

The mind will think the thoughts of the attitude that fills it. For instance, If the spirit of our mind is anxiety, then our mind will find something to be anxious about. If the spirit of our mind is anger, then our mind will dwell on things that cause us aggravation. We will remember past hurts, offences, and then develop arguments within our thinking to attack the person.

If the spirit of our mind is hatred then we will think of the people we dislike and begin to find the reasons to hate them. If the spirit of our mind is sexually impure then we will think on those things that are lewd and licentious.

If the spirit of our mind is judgmental and accusing then we will both feel judged and accused. We will find things we have done that may even be innocent in themselves, that we will see in an accusatory perspective and inwardly condemn ourselves.

If the spirit of our mind is discouragement then we will find things that discourage us. Our mind acts as a servant to the internal climate we are creating. It will think, argue, justify, and logically prove to itself the attitude we are harbouring.

If the spirit of our mind is humble we will think self effacing thoughts.If the spirit of our mind is proud, we will think arrogant thoughts.

All our thoughts will bring a harvest to our personality and character. In the case of Nebuchadnezzar, when his thoughts became proud and he attributed to himself all his achievement rather than give God the glory, he was struck with insanity. He lost his mind.

Our thoughts open us to a spiritual world, either God or the devil. If we think of the good, then we bring the God of peace to rule in our lives, but when we think on evil we allow the devil access to our mind. Thus we are told to bring down thoughts that exalt themselves against the knowledge of God, and to put on the helmet of hope, which is the positive anticipation of good.

The more we think on a particular thing, the fantasised images become an internal reality which tends to make us more accepting of carrying out what we are thinking of. 

The spirit (attitude) of our mind actually begins in our heart. 

Thanks for reading this week! If you would like to read some more I also have a brand new post on my Linkedin, you can click here to read it.

If you would like to check out our church, click here to look at visiting a campus. If you can’t be with us on campus why not check out my podcast?

See you in Church!

The Upside Down World Of God

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Isa 55:8-13  For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways, says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven, And do not return there, But water the earth, And make it bring forth and bud, That it may give seed to the sower And bread to the eater, so shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it. For you shall go out with joy, And be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills Shall break forth into singing before you, And all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; And it shall be to the LORD for a name, For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.

If we can understand and operate in the ways of God, then we will be able to navigate every situation we ever find ourselves in throughout our life. Navigating life successfully is not about having one perfect circumstance after another. It is about travelling through every difficult circumstance we encounter with Christ attitudes and His pathways.  He said I am the way the truth and the life.

Many authors have been rejected multiple times before they were accepted. If they respond rightly to the criticism each rejection has made them a better writer. We think rejection is final, however, it’s just a part of the journey, God has designed to make you better at what you do. Nothing comes to you in final form. It always comes as raw material. You’ve got a dream to have a tree, and God gives you a seed. You want a pot, He gives you clay. You want a song, He gives you three notes of a melody. You go away and work on it, redrafting every sentence, every sound, every word.

Be happy when things begin small, or go wrong. It’s part of the journey God has en route to success.

Michelangelo had to paint the largest painting in the world within a structured ceiling with panels and spaniels.  He worked them into the painting and made them so now no-one notices the framework, in fact it works to enhance the painting!

Thanks for reading this week! If you would like to read some more I also have a brand new post on my Linkedin, you can click here to read it.

If you would like to check out our church, click here to look at visiting a campus. If you can’t be with us on campus why not check out my podcast?

See you in Church!