Grateful for the difficult and even the evil

Grateful for the difficult and the evil

Opposition actually can energize us.

The person or the situation can either be difficult or even evil.

Winston Churchill was a commander easily bored by agreement, and whose greatest moments were inspired by opposition. He had a running battle with Lady Nancy Astor, who once said to him, ‘Winston, if you were my husband, I’d poison your tea.’ To which Churchill famously replied, ‘Nancy, if I were your husband, I’d drink it!’

When Adolph Hitler came to power in Germany, Churchill found the formidable enemy he’d been waiting for his whole life. And he rose to the challenge.

Ghandi faced and changed first India and then the world with his stance and life!

So did Martin Luther King,Jr.

Climb that tree and work smart

Work Smart

Careful planning puts you ahead in the long run; hurry and scurry puts you further behind.

Proverbs 21: 5 msg

When I lived and worked in the DC area, Air Force personnel would repeatedly remind us “Let’s work smart and not just hard!”

Thomas Edison said, “Good fortune is what happens when opportunity meets with planning.”

There is a time and a place to hack away at the underbrush with your machete.

But if we really want to find your way out of the jungle, we start by climbing the tallest tree and looking around.

Speed without direction is pointless, and efficiency is no substitute for planning.

Saying yes

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up.

And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us”

(Hebrews 12:1 NLT).

The most important word to remember for our spiritual journey may be a surprising one: “no.”

Our faith journey is a long one.

Too many people start off well in their spiritual journey but putter out before the end.

God wants is to go the distance.

We’ve got a marathon ahead of us, and we can’t run the marathon with a barbell in our hands.

Often people quit their faith journey early because everything they’re carrying wears them out.

We need to de-clutter.

A cruise liner can get pretty fast in the middle of the water. If you add a hundred lifeboats to it, it’ll slow down.

Plug a battery into one lightbulb, and it’ll go a long way. Plug it into 15, and it drains quickly. Plug it into 100, and it’ll drain even more quickly.

That’s what happens to us when we try to do too much.

We need to learn to say “no” to some things that are good because they keep us from doing our best.

Hebrews 12:1 says, “Let us strip off every weight that slows us down” (NLT).

Weights aren’t bad. They’re not sinful. They’re just unnecessary. It could be a job, a relationship, or a hobby. It’s something that slows you down from what God wants from your life. And it’s not worth it.

What are the weights that are slowing you down?

What are the good things we’re doing that might keep us from the best God has for us?

Why do we think we feel so pressured to say “yes” to everything that comes our way?

Try saying “no” to one thing this week that we would normally agree to.

What difference does it make?

Rick Warren with revisions by Phillip Kapela

Each day

One Day at a Time

“Now it came about” is the same construction which appears in 1 Kings 17:7 and 17.

Literally it is, “and it came to pass.”

Again, this is not by chance, but by the timing of God who was carrying out His purposes with Elijah and Israel.

We need to learn to see the hand of God in our lives.

As His thoughts are not ours, so it is that His timing is often not ours as well.

“After many days.”

Notice, not simply after years, or in the third year, but the verse says, “after many days. . . in the third year.”

What can be learned and applied from this?

For God’s people, no matter how fast or slow the years seem to pass, God deals with us one-day-at-a- time.

Each day of the believer’s life is important to God.

It should be for us also.

Wisdom making a difference.

Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. James 3: 13 niv

Suppose you embrace a life of wisdom.

What will you end up looking like?

The answer may surprise some.

Wisdom doesn’t turn you into an inscrutable sage with flowing robes or a bookish professor in an ivory tower.

Instead, wisdom enables you to become an engaged, likeable human being.

Quietly helping others becomes the focus of your life.

That might mean teaching a young child how to tie his shoes or helping an elderly person with her groceries.

You do these things not because you’re trying to check off a list of good deeds for the day but because they flow naturally from who you are.

Your wisdom gives you the power to make a difference.

In Control or Controlled

In Control or Controlled

Respond or react?

Patience is better than strength. Controlling your temper is better than capturing a city. Proverbs 16: 32 ncv

Many times …

In our world, there are many good reasons—as well as many bad reasons—to feel angry.

Controlled anger is a response to a given situation.

When we manage our anger well, we put ourself in a position of leadership.

When we react, by contrast, we can be the hotheaded person alienates even his friends and sows the seeds of his own demise.

These questions will help: Is our anger motivating constructive action?

Is it appropriate to the situation?


Where there is no counsel, the people fall; but in the multitude of counselors there is safety. Proverbs 11: 14 nkjv

Counsel -A role and a person.

While we are know something, all know more.

More people can mean more wisdom.

It can also lead to confusion where shared values are lacking.

A kitchen cabinet holds much and a cabinet of counselors …

Power to do good.

Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act. Proverbs 3: 27 niv

In a mixed-up world, injustice and unfairness abound.

But each person has an opportunity to help make things right by giving credit where credit is due, by giving praise where praise has been earned, by rewarding good performance when it is within their power to do so, and by giving help to those who deserve it.

Let’s say “thank you” and “well done” to a store clerk, a server, and, most especially to everyone at home!

Learning from whoops and wows

“Whoops” often erupts and sometimes blurts from our mouth — something we said and/or did.

We immediately knew that the action was not good.

“Wow” often also jumps out of our mouth because the action and experience lights up our world and gives life and joy.

I have learned more from my “whoops” than my “wows” for they show me the change which I need to make.