It’s Your Choice to have a Positive Attitude

One of the Chapels I am able to hold a meeting within the Correction System.

I don’t think Doug and I have really thought about how we spend our time until now. We are strong in Jesus and I can’t imagine how it is for those who are not believers or have not really pursued Jesus but claim to be believers. It is amazing how this “COVID 19” situation has disrupted so many lives, causing stress and depression as well as loss of faith.

We have several people in our family me included that have a compromised immune system so we have had to stay away from each other. 

The swine flu killed over 70,000 people several years back the majority were the elderly and those already severely ill.  I hope we learn from this and find a better way to deal with the spread of flu.  The country is suffering financially.  Many believe a cause for all the paranoid behavior is that it’s an election year and there are those that want President Trump gone.  He is in no way responsible but they will spin it to make him the bad guy.  Our economy was the best it had been for many years, jobs were available and businesses thriving. Well enough of that…

God is still here and He really wants us to use this time to continue to share His truth with as many people as possible.

Many of you are probably struggling as we are with keeping a positive Christ-like attitude, so I decide to share my notes from a meeting on having a good attitude and how it is our choice…

It’s your choice to be positive or negative!

Matthew 8:13 says “go and it will be done as you believe.”

“The one who desires life, to love and see good days,  must keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit.”  1 Peter 3:10

Proverbs 23:17 tells us “For as he thinks in his heart, so he is…” Do you refuse to hope?  Do you have a fear of being hurt?  Are you living a negative lifestyle?

God tells us to practice being positive in every situation, if whatever is happening in your life is not so good…expect God to bring good out of it…this He promises in His Word.

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28 NASB

“Be of the same mind toward one another; do not be haughty in mind, but associate with the lowly. Do not be wise in your own estimation.  Never pay back evil for evil to anyone.  Respect what is right in the sight of all men.  If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.  Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.”  Romans 12:16-19 NASB

Paul is telling us to be ready to adjust ourselves to people and situations. When we don’t get our way, our feelings rise up and bring self-pity and a negative attitude.  We have a choice…to immediately recognize those feelings and with God’s help shut them down!  We must choose to have peace about the situation.

We must have a ready mind…“These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”  Acts 17:11 KJV

Hope is the anchor of the Soul!

We must know without a doubt that we are FREE to believe that with faith and hope in Jesus the tough circumstance, difficult people who hurt us…all situations can be turned for good. 

Read Romans 4:18-21  Respect the promise of God, give Him glory daily!

Paul reminds us “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God.  And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope;  and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” Romans 5:1-5

John 16:7-8  tells us…The Holy Spirit has comer to help us, if you want to change…Know this…YOU CANNOT CHANGE YOURSELF, but  GOD WILL AS WE TRUST AND OBEY HIM.  It will take time, do not be discouraged with yourself.  Ask the Holy Spirit to show you each time you get negative.  Put your feelings and attitude up against God’s Holy Word.  You must resist aggressively in the name of Jesus!

Proverbs 15:15 says “All the days of the afflicted are bad,  but a cheerful heart has a continual feast.”

“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. “  Philippians 1:6

“Therefore the Lord longs to be gracious to you,  And therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you.  For the Lord is a God of justice; How blessed are all those who long for Him.”   Isaiah 30:18

You must have a READY MIND and be POSITIVE…having FAITH that God  WILL work it out for GOOD. 

Ladies as I was preparing this Word, God lead me to the following scripture which says…”For it is only right for me to feel this way about you all, because I have you in my heart, since both in my imprisonment and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers of grace with me.”  Philippians 1:7

Your Sister in Jesus Christ, Laurie

The Lord’s Prayer

women kneeing in prayer

Recently I had the honor of sharing with a group of women.  As I prayed each day prior to the day, the Lord began to speak to me about giving them insight to the Lord’s Prayer as given in Matthew 6:9-13.  I felt the Holy Spirit say give them a new meaning, one they can use when journeying deeper in their relationship with Me.  I call this a Jesus Habit. Prayer and studying God’s Word are a true level of connecting with Him in an intimate way.  It’s important to attend church or a Bible study to gain insight from others, however, your quiet personal time with God will bring new meaning to your relationship with Him.

Read Matthew 6:9-13, take note of my comments and write ones of your own as God speaks to you.  There is meat in these scriptures.  Use this as a guide in your daily prayer time.  I would like to say, don’t let others or the devil make you feel as if you have failed if you do not hold to a specific time of day or a hard rule of when and where to seek God.  He is always with you.  So whenever and wherever works! The point is just do it!

One more thing, get a Bible! Don’t relay on your phone, tablet or iPad, even a computer.  There is nothing better than the written Word in a tangible printed way.  Write in the margins, add pages using some of the new techniques used by art journalers. Let your Bible express your love for Jesus.  As your relationship matures your Bible will reflect that relationship, or provide a history of your journey, no electonic device can show your love better.

v6 “But you, when you pray, go into your inner room, close your door and pray to your Father who is in secret, and your Father who sees what is done in secret will reward you.” 

Intimate, private relationship with God – praying and studying His Holy Word alone grows your relationship with Him.  Empty platitudes spoken in public prove  nothing but expose your pride.

v7-8 “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.” 

Do not be meaningless, repetitive, God knows your mind and heart’s motive. He knows before we ask so be honest. Come surrendered and humbled, lay yourself open before your Lord.

v9 “Pray, then, in this way: Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.” 

Recognize His Authority, Who He is, the great I AM. Then declare His  Holiness… Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord for the whole earth is filled with His Glory.  Isaiah 6:3

v10 “Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.” 

Acknowledge the need for God, and the need for all people to know Him, we have a responsibility in representing Him to the world through our life and in spreading the Gospel with those we encounter.

v11 “Give us this day our daily bread.”

We are depend, so make our-self dependent on God for all things.  Acknowledge that only God can give you what you need…physically, emotionally and spiritually.  Matthew 6:33 says “seek Him first, His Kingdom and His righteousness and you will receive all you need.” 

v12 “And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.”

God forgives us of our (debts) sin, through this we have an example of forgiveness for those who hurt or sin against us.  We cannot claim God’s forgiveness if we harbor anger and unforgiveness towards  others.  Ask God to continually and daily to reveal any bitterness we may hold in our heart.

v13 “And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the   kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” 

God does not tempt us with evil,  James 1:13 says “Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone.“ Ask God to guide you and give you discernment.  God will deliver you from evil when we stand in God’s strength and authority based in His Word.  James 4:7  tells us to “Submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee.”  Finally have confidence in God,  I Corinthians 10:13  confirms God is there for us, “No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.” 

This afternoon of sharing turn into an amazing day of lives changed through God’s Word.  I am but his empty vessel, set on a course of sharing truth, and the life changing experience found in living and serving the one truth God…Jesus Christ!

Be Blessed,

Laurie

 

Seek Peace

Scripture: Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. Psalm 34:14 NIV

Observation: This is a good follow-up to yesterday’s SOAP. If we will seek peace we will stop doing evil. We will not delay justice and we will no longer call good bad and bad good.

Application: As I desire to allow God to reign I will automatically seek peacefulness with others and justice will result.

Prayer: Father, help me to desire your will for my life so that evil will not prevail. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

Let God Reign

Scripture:  When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, people’s hearts are filled with schemes to do wrong.  Ecclesiastes 8:11 NIV

Observation:  When justice is delayed, injustice becomes the order or more precisely disorder of the day.  All we have to do is look at our society and see the truth in this scripture.    Delayed justice has led to a complete flip-flop and the inmates seem to be running the asylum.  Isiah 5:20a says, “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil…”  We have forsaken our Lord and his truth and our upside-down world is evidence of that!

Application:  I must pray for God and his justice to reign in my life and our world today.

Prayer:  Father, we have caused there to be great injustice in this world. I must take responsibility for my part in allowing it to happen. Reign in my life and help me to be bold in the face of injustice and to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves.  I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

I Have Drill Today

Scripture:  I will exalt you, lord, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me.  Psalm 30:1 NIV

Observation:  I have to go to drill today. That’s periodically reoccurring school for firemen to hone our skills. I’m old fashioned and my glory days as a strapping young fireman with all of the answers have long-since passed. To put it bluntly, all of us firemen nearing retirement need to hurry up and get there and get out of all of the young guy’s way. As I left for work today, Laurie prayed for me that the Lord would protect my crew and me as we are put through our paces. Psalm 30:1 confirmed for me that God heard her plea and I am protected, “…and did not let my enemies gloat over me.” Psalm 30:1b NIV  Thank you Lord!

Application:  I must accept the truth and carry on. I’ve done my job for many years. I know my job and I must trust in the knowledge and training that I’ve accumulated over the years to complete today’s exercises. Thank you Lord!

Prayer:  Thank you Lord for having my back. I pray that I honor you today. Amen

Doug

Love God, Not Money

Scripture:  For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.  1 Timothy 6:10 NIV

Observation:  The conventional usage of this bit of scripture states, “money is the root if all evil.”  This is a misstatement of the real scripture. It is the “love” of money that is the root of all evil.  I believe that the scripture is actually stating that elevating money to god status is the evil. “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:8 NIV  God is love!  If a person loves money, their god is money and that is evil.

Application:  We must realize that money is a tool and it can be used for good or for evil. Money must be kept in its proper place and viewed in the proper perspective. Love God by using your money to further his kingdom.

Prayer:  Father, it’s been a while since I  wrote of you or of your word. I’m sorry. Help me to focus on you in my daily reading and help me to remember today’s truth. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

Thank You Lord

Scripture: He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the lord.  Proverbs 18:22 NIV

Observation: This proverb says it clearly. I can’t add to or take away from it.

Application: I must understand and appreciate the wife that God has given me. I sure don’t deserve her. One more evidence to me that God loves me unconditionally.

Prayer: Father,  thank you for giving me Laurie. Help me to be worthy of her. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

Help Me to Know

Scripture: If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.” John 20:23 NIV

Observation: I remember having this piece of scripture given to me before. It must mean that God really wants me to understand this truth. It’s pretty powerful and comes with a lot of responsibility. Through the power of the Spirit, we can or cannot forgive sin.

Application: I’m not sure how to apply this truth. I know that it’s not to be taken lightly. If anyone can help me with this I’d appreciate it.

Prayer: Father, help me to know. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

Be Humble

Scripture: Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18 NIV

Observation: This proverb instructs that the arrogant fail and fall.

Application: Take it from me, arrogant people get humbled. It’s not a source of pride for me to admit but I’ve dealt with this myself. I pray for humility from God so that he never has to humble me again.

Prayer: Father, help me to be humble and consider others before myself. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug

Consider Others First

Scripture: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves…” Philippians 2:3 NIV

Observation: Consider the welfare of others more important than your own welfare.

Application: The observation is the application. We must consider others before ourselves.

Prayer: Father, help me to consider others first. I ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen

Doug