“Lifting Weights”

With the New Year on the horizon, I hear many people resolving or making commitments to “get fit”. Some are vowing to swap fast foods for healthier options and others are investing in workout gear and athletic shoes to show that their commitment and sincerity.

While it’s admirable to get healthy and physically fit, what are you doing today about the dead weights that are holding you down emotionally? Bad choices in relationships = dead weight. Dead-end jobs = dead weight. Being out of fellowship with God and others = dead weight. Maybe you have items that you can add to this list of things that are holding you down or holding you back. Why not make the commitment to yourself to get rid of everything that is not contributing to your happiness or helping you reach your potential?

Take action now: Meditate on Philippians 4:6, 7: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (New International Version)

Embrace this truth: Some “losses” are actually gains…it depends on your perception!

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“Make A Wish”

I have always admired the work carried out by various charities, but one charity that really warms my heart is the Make-A-Wish Foundation. This organization grants wishes to children who have life-threatening medical conditions. Reading the feel good stories about fulfilling the wish of a dying child brings tears to my eyes.

If you were given the prognosis that you only had a certain amount of time to live, what would be your wish? Would you desire to visit “the happiest place on earth”, or spend time on an exotic island or would you choose instead to be given the opportunity to make things right with family members or former friends whom you may have vowed never to speak to again because of how they’ve wronged and hurt you?

I think that most would vote for the latter, which lends itself to thinking eternally. Disneyland and exotic islands will one day perish, but I believe God would be pleased with us thinking relationally by seeking reconciliation and restoration because the reality

is we all have an appointed time to die so it would serve us well to seek reconciliation instead of revenge.

Take action now: Meditate on 2 Corinthians 5:18,19: Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God (New Living Translation)

Embrace this truth: Don’t sweat the small stuff and remember it’s ALL small stuff!

“Hurry Up and Wait!”

In the parable of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32), the younger of two sons wanted his inheritance and he wanted it NOW! Do you know anyone with that same spirit of impatience? Is it you who is impatient? Has the Lord promised something to you and you’ve grown weary of waiting and find yourself running ahead of God and trying to make things happen on your own? Do you get distressed when you see others being promoted, getting engaged, buying homes or obtaining positions of power and you feel “stuck” in neutral, like you’re not progressing? You may find yourself questioning what God promised you…

Don’t be discouraged. God cannot (and will not) lie. We can exhale when we realize that our timetable is not the same as God’s. If you know the way the Parable plays out, the father gave into his son’s request and gave him what he wanted. HOWEVER, once the had son spent all his money on women and wild living, he found himself hungry, broke, disgusted with himself and living among the pigs. But thank God, that’s not how the story ends. The New Living Translation says “he finally came to his senses…” (v.17). What the son thought he wanted and needed actually brought him to a desolate place, where he had no other choice than to go back home and seek his father’s forgiveness and restoration. Doesn’t that sound like us with God? The similarities between our Father and the father in this story don’t stop there: the father gladly welcomed his son back, just as God does us when we tire of living on our own terms.

Take action now: Meditate on Luke 15:20: And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. (New King James Version)

Embrace this truth: God is always on time!