Tag Archives: love

Devotional Tuesday – Humble Pie

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“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time” I Peter 5:6

Humble Pie is kind of like broccoli, you don’t eat it for desert.  Jesus’ style of humility has personal influence under the control and management of the Holy Spirit.  He whispers, stop talking about yourself and get interested in God and then others. He invites you to take some of that bonus you just got and pay it forward. Give it to someone or something that God brings to your mind. Humility before God manifests itself in controlling your ability to influence.  The trouble comes when we transfer that control to a feeling, the moment, convenience, a fear, or our appetites.  Each of us has influence, and we’ll project that on to others for better or for worse. The question is, how will you use yours?

Will you be the person that uses his position to intimidate, demand, and threaten the man who possess wealth for his own pleasure? God desires that we lead but also to remember who gave us this position of leadership and for what purpose?  He gives us money and things to use and enjoy but not exclusively for our purpose. It really does get down to out of control selfish behavior.  Not doing without thinking. God desires the best for us but knows that the best for us does not include self-absorption.  The aroma of selfishness really kills the sweet taste of humble pie.

The lens of Jesus was a mission on earth of humility, that’s where it had to start and finish. He had to learn the rhythm of possessing royalty without flaunting His crown.  You may not be a celebrity, but you have influence. Similarly, you may not be pulling down six figures, but I know you have relational capital in the lives of others, use it wisely.

Father, your recipe for humble pie is the best ever made.

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Devotional Tuesday – Special Forces

“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” Matthew 4:19

The spirit of these warriors is like the spirit of God’s men.  In fact, when God finds a man who is passionate for His purposes, trained in the Word, filled with the Spirit, humble in heart, He will send that man into situations unsuited for others.  The men, like the missions, are different, even odd, but they are custom trained for these jobs — jobs only they can do.  Wondrously stunned God’s men have said to me, “If you’d have asked me ten years ago if I’d be doing this, I would’ve said you were crazy or something real close.”

Today, we’re called on to do certain missions that only we are trained and equipped for.  God tactically places us  in certain groups of men whether it be seats on an airplane, at work, at home with our family, in cars, in offices and countless situations to help others see God or experience His plan in their situation. God would have us love this kind of life, not be fearful of it. How often have we condemned ourselves for not doing or saying such and such?  These are times when God has us take inventory and his Spirit reveals to us the need to reach out and gives us sensitivity and knowledge on how to step up and deliver in the situation we find ourselves in. Our hearts are humbled and open to our response to his ability.

You’ve been saved from yourself, connected to God’s Holy Spirit, and inserted tactically into life and relationships to accomplish these missions. Remember it’s not all about you; it’s all about Him and his view of you. The truest thing about you is not what you think of you but what He thinks of you.

Father, you will make me a fisher of men.

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Devotional Tuesday – The Vortex

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For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

Inside of every God’s man there is a living, breathing whirlpool of supernatural power.  Through prayer, our faith is placed in a powerful person and in His promises. Consider these promises: “Because he loves me,” says the Lord; “I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name” — “I will never leave you” — “I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him” — “I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to proper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” — “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” — “‘I will be found by you,’ declares the Lord.” — “call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” — “I will respond personally and reveal powerful truth.” All these promises come from his mighty Word.

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. (Matthew 11:28-30)

God’s man has a clear invitation to tap into God’s personal storehouse of power and purpose.  Just as the Colorado River was waiting for Arthur Davis to harness its power, God is waiting for us to tap into His awesome strength.  The reality, for many of us, is that we are either clueless to the personal benefits of prayer and faith in His promises or too hurried to slow down and get into the practice of prayer and the reading of His promises. We need to “think different,” as the Apple computer ads say.

Father, You ”acknowledge my name”. How much more time do I need to acknowledge Your name and the mighty vortex of your promises.

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Devotional Tuesday – Gambling with Your Future

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But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23

It’s easy to achieve a form of Christianity that presents well.  In fact, when a mutual friend, Clay, introduced me to Joel at Starbucks, I was impressed with Joel from the start.  We seemed to connect immediately.  We talked for an hour about our faith, our lousy golf games, and, also the emerging trend in medicine since Joel was a doctor in town.  He made several statements that suggested a spiritual maturity in his walk with God, including his desire to connect and grow his marriage and his family.

After our first meeting, Joel started coming to my Thursday morning Bible study, where he grew tight with the men at his table.  Technically, the guy was a model Christian.  Tragically, however he was about to experience the folly of an 80/20 life. I later learned from Clay, and later from Joel himself, his dilemma. He was talking a good game and putting himself out there as a guy who was working his faith, but at the same time he was feeding a gambling addiction as fast as a grandma feeds nickels into a slot machine.

What started off as a willful but innocent diversion — the game of blackjack — now enslaved him as he spent nearly every available moment figuring out how to save his house, his medical practice, and his marriage.  His future lay perilously in the hands of creditors.  The next time I saw Joel he was a broken man, living out the consequences of an 80/20 life.

As Paul warned Timothy, many men serve their own interest “by having a form of godliness but denying its power.” In contrast, when God’s man is tempted to enter 80/20 territory, he does what God would rather have him do — even if it’s less convenient or not nearly as fun. It’s called self control, it’s a gift of the Spirit. Accept the gift, after all He loves you — right?

Father, You are the best, “What a friend we have in Jesus”

Devotional Tuesday – Satan Wants Us to Act Stupid. Don’t Give in.

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Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Ephesians 6:13

This is not the kind of devotional one should take lightly nor is temptation something to brush off as “no big deal.”  Temptation is just the doorway but the decision to give into it will bring your life down all around you.  Maybe not today.  Maybe not tomorrow.  However, eventually your decision to give into temptation will have consequences and we can’t expect that God will deliver us from those consequences when all along her has been telling us to avoid it.

When you are married and have a family the stakes are even higher and the potential down fall, longer and harder than if you are a single man.  The more connected you are to others the more of an impact your decisions have on people.

As men we presume, because we think we are so smart and crafty, that we can pursue temptation, give into it, have our appetites temporarily satisfied – return to God’s good graces and suffer not the consequences of those choices.  Sitting here now we can all agree how foolish that sounds, yet how else do we explain our behavior?  We always want to have our cake and eat it too.

An adulterous affair isn’t necessarily just the experience of the soft touch of a woman’s body. If a man is concerned more of how he’s being accepted by the world than by his wife and children or even more the things that he claims now are the center of his life, could that be similar to an adulterous affair?  In fact isn’t that similar to an adulterous affair with yourself? After all, in any adulterous affair the damage is not only to those around us but to ourselves. Do you suppose our loving Father, who by the way loves us perfectly, would allow some very unhappy circumstances to follow? Your Father God will not let His child get away with this. Doesn’t that make total rational sense? Then why would any rational, right thinking man continue this activity? Whatever it is.

Satan wants us to act stupid.

He uses our feelings to get his job done.  Don’t be stupid, snap out of it and make some very important immediate decisions. Your moral house is burning down while you are straightening pictures on the walls.  Take a cold shower and get a grip. God will fulfill his promises.

Father, thank you for tough love, when I need it.

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