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I Didn’t See Myself as Lazy

  Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper. Proverbs 13:4 For most of my life, I’ve wanted to play guitar and sing. In recent years I’ve wanted to play and sing to God with Gina. Most of the time when we played, we got frustrated with each other. As Gina and I are …

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Don’t Worry About the Speck in Your Friend’s Eye

  “Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.” Matthew 7:1 Many times, we create a standard to live by. Then we judge the people around us or compare ourselves to how we’re doing …

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Looping Logic

  Soon the whole city was filled with confusion. Inside, the people were all shouting, some one thing and some another. Everything was in confusion. In fact, most of them didn’t even know why they were there. Acts 19:32 Loral Langemeier, one of my first business coaches, taught me about looping logic. Suppose you had a flat tire on the …

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Intentionally Seeking God

  And he did evil, because he did not prepare his heart to seek the LORD. 2 Chronicles 12:14 Seeking God doesn’t just accidentally happen. We have to be intentional. We have to prepare our hearts. Preparing takes time. It takes work. It takes humility. Ben

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Sincere Darkness

  Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is unhealthy, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is! Matthew 6: 22, 23   If I …

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It’s the We

  For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10 The past couple of years I’ve come to understand that the gospel isn’t a “me” gospel. It’s a “we” gospel. What I mean is that God looks at how we interact …

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I Die Daily

  1 Corinthians 15:31 Organizations are fueled by the human spirit and human energy. Like the mighty river that originates from a little spring, everything in the organization begins, rises, and falls from what happens in the leader’s secret heart. It’s way too scary. I remember the years when I wanted to be the top guy, I wanted everyone to …

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Defying Gravity

  In a world full of noise and sensual distractions wanting to fill me and whip me around, I can live in and for its pleasures. Or I can lock myself inside a lonely shell. There’s a third option: I can look up to God for help. Must I follow the world’s pleasures until I’m in trouble and then cry …

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Complete the Work

  I left you on the island of Crete so you could complete our work there and appoint elders in each town as I instructed you. Titus 1:5 Some people fight for positions. They want to stand on a pedestal above their peers for various reasons, such as pride, power, feeling insulated, or the illusion of job security. God wants …

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Climb the Mountain of God

  Psalm 24 The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. The world and all its people belong to him. We already belong to him. But in this life, he won’t take what’s his. He offers me the gift of his love. He wants the gift of my love from me. He won’t demand it or take it from me. …

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His Light, Not Mine

  Psalm 27:1-4 The Lord is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid? One thing I learned from my years of depression is that I’m not a source of light. I might have a little dim light in me, but mostly, I’m full of darkness. The Lord is my light. I’m afraid of the dark. Are you? With …

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Acceptable Sacrifice

  If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. Matthew 16:25 Who can know God? Those who learn to know themselves well and then surrender the self they know so well on God’s altar in grateful sacrifice. As they release their …

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A Sick Mind Never Heals Itself

  Everything is pure to those whose hearts are pure. But nothing is pure to those who are corrupt and unbelieving, because their minds and consciences are corrupted. Such people claim they know God, but they deny him by the way they live. They are detestable and disobedient, worthless for doing anything good. Titus 1:15, 16 This one is a …

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Slaves and Free

  Slaves must always obey their masters and do their best to please them. They must not talk back or steal but must show themselves to be entirely trustworthy and good. Then they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive in every way. Titus 2:9, 10 Many Christians believe slavery has ended. I’m slow ignoring something the Bible teaches …

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Hot Questions That Burn Your Insides

  Once when he was eating with them, he commanded them, “Do not leave Jerusalem until the Father sends you the gift he promised, as I told you before. John baptized with water, but in just a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 1:4, 5 Mealtime is a great time to discuss whatever’s on your …

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Healthy Bones

  This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones. Proverbs 3:8 Pete Scazzero says, “You might have Jesus in your heart, but your grandparents are in your bones.” He means our sins are deeper than we know, because they’ve been passed down for generations. He offered the Bible story of Joseph to illustrate. Joseph had to …

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It’s Hard to Imagine God Thanking Me

  God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them. Hebrews 6:10 It seems that no matter how much extra margin I create, life fills it up. Once again, I’m tired and overwhelmed. This morning I made a list of my …

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Surface Christianity Versus Deep Roots

  He must have a strong belief in the trustworthy message he was taught; then he will be able to encourage others with wholesome teaching and show those who oppose it where they are wrong. Titus 1:9 For whatever it’s worth, I become agitated when people claim they’re preachers, but aren’t willing to give the Bible authority over their life. …

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Growing Our Character

  And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. Romans 5:4 Let me develop strong character—a character that does not waiver with conflict or with temptation; I must have a strong character to finish the course, to effect change. I will hope in my salvation and I will hope in this change. Character cannot …

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Watch Out for the Trap!

  If a bird sees a trap being set, it knows to stay away. But these people set an ambush for themselves; they are trying to get themselves killed. Such is the fate of all who are greedy for money; it robs them of life. Proverbs 1:17-19 I feel uneasy looking at those pictures of people who are trying to …

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Standing Strong From the Inside Out

  So, my dear brothers and sisters, stand strong. Do not let anything move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your work in the Lord is never wasted. 1 Corinthians 15:58 Some things in my life are falling apart right now. The verse gives me comfort. Regardless of what was coming …

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You’re Helping Yourself

  Wisdom will multiply your days and add years to your life. If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. Proverbs 9:11, 12 Wisdom doesn’t just add to my days, it multiplies them. How does wisdom add years to my life? I’m walking in sync with creation. Wisdom keeps me from making stupid decisions. Gathering wisdom gives …

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Running! Running! Running!

  Keep your lamps burning… Then you will be ready to open the door and let him in the moment he arrives and knocks.” (Luke 12:35-36) Many people – including myself in the past – pursue God only when they’re in a crisis. They seek Him because they’re needy or in pain. But Jesus says to burn hot for Him …

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Breaking The Curse

“Those who fear the Lord are secure; he will be a refuge for their children.” (Proverbs 14:26) We met a woman whose husband was bi-polar. The impact on their family was devastating. Their son also was diagnosed bi-polar and turned away from God as a result. My heart broke with sadness for this family. At the same time, my heart …

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Whisper Jesus

“There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.”              Acts 1:11 How daring is your faith in Jesus? Will you step away from the sin, secret, or addiction you’ve been so secure in, and whisper Jesus? The religious leaders never encountered anyone …

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Too Close to the Edge

The tiny island of Ghoramara, off the coast of India has been shrinking each year over the past several decades. It has lost about half of its land and two-thirds of its population since the 1960’s. With farming as the main occupation, residents literally watch their livelihood drop into the sea. Those who live on the edge don’t fare well. …

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S-L-O-W Down

Some mornings in my quiet time, my mind races like a pebble barely skipping over the surface. I bow my heart low and let the hurry-cane pass over. I wait. And wait some more. God calms me. Waves of peace wash over me and I know he knows all about me. I don’t need to say anything. I can just …

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What Makes Me, Me

Trying to trick Jesus doesn’t work, even if you’re extreme Bible scholars like the Pharisees. Not only did Jesus outsmart them, he taught them a lesson, a lesson still good for us today. Nothing material belongs to me – I may or may not be able to keep it in this life, but I certainly can’t take it with me …

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Not the Next Fad

Back in our hippie days, we lived in an apartment building in Richmond, Virginia for a few months. We rented a section of the basement that had been converted into living quarters. Large and small plumbing and heating pipes ran through our apartment. We were hippies trying to become house painters, so we painted the pipes various bright colors. A …

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Hitting the Wall

Many endurance runners describe hitting the wall at the marathon’s 20-mile mark. This has been calculated as the point when they physically run out of fuel. Their glycogen levels are exhausted, resulting in overwhelming feelings of heaviness in the legs. Concentration diminishes, and despair overtakes them. We can feel this way when we get partway through a difficult situation. Bill …