Thursday, June 26, 2014

There's Still Time

 " Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up." Galatians 6:9

Remember back in January when you made yourself a promise to do or become better in a specific way?

What happened?

 Did you start out strong--determined that this time wouldn't be like all the others when you petered out?

Maybe you did go farther this time than others, but you still ended up losing sight of your goal. You didn't intend it to happen; you got busy, sidetracked, discouraged, or just lazy.

Whatever the reason, you still have time to make it! You still have six more months in this year to reach your goal. A time will come when it's too late to try again, but that day is not today.

Jesus spoke a parable of two sons who were told to do something (Matthew 21:28-31). One said he would, but didn't. The other said he wouldn't but changed his mind and did it. Then Jesus asked which one obeyed.

Your goal may not be a matter of obedience or disobedience, but the same principle applies: a late start has more horsepower than the shiniest good intention any day.

Who's to say you won't work better under the pressure of a late start?   If God granted Samson his heart's desire on his last day alive, why would He not give you strength to start again mid-year?

   No more moping about time lost. Start hoping and trying and doing.
                                  How to Get Going Again

• Write down your realistic goal. Post it where you will see it everyday.

•Next, write specific steps for how you will get to the finish line. Steps create dots to connect so you know where you are in the process and what to do next.

•Then tell a friend who will cheer you on.

•Finally, ask The Lord, your biggest Cheerleader,  to give you strength to accomplish the goal for His glory.

 I'll share my reheated goal in the comments on this page. Feel free to join me by sharing yours!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

How to Suffer

"Have this attitude in yourselves which also was in Christ Jesus...."  (Philippians 2:5)

No one said it would be easy, but you're finding it harder than you expected "not easy" to be. Maybe you've been on this hard road a long time, and you're tired. Change seems to be so far up ahead you can't see it. You're not even sure it's there. Giving in is looking better than pressing on.

Maybe you just entered this hard road, and your tender feet are bleeding at every rock in the road. The short time you've been here feels like forever; your mind blacks out at the thought of going any farther.

   You don't want to give up, but you don't want to keep struggling either. What other alternative is there?

Take encouragement from Coach Jesus. He knows about suffering.

While on the cross, His eyes looked beyond His present pain. He focused on the joy up ahead. (Hebrews 12:2). He remembered that pain doesn't last forever; it is a hallway with a door at the end. Better days are coming if you persevere, Dear Sister. God has a purpose for your pain. Giving up only produces regret. What's worse, you miss out on what God planned.

While Jesus suffered, His mind was on somebody other than Himself (Luke 23:34; John 19:26). Like a spoiled child pitching a fit, pain gets louder when you give all your attention to it. Find somebody to love on. Listen to them and look for ways to encourage them. Loving others is a wonderful pain reliever.

Finally, Jesus kept the lines of communication open while He suffered (Mark 15:34).  Don't shut down just because you are hurting and don't understand why. Tell Him how you feel, cry on His shoulder, ask for His help daily.  His mercies are new every morning so be there everyday to receive them. His faithfulness is great, so keep your heart open wide so He can load you up.

Yes, life is hard. There's no getting around it, but you can get through it.

 Determine to suffer well the way Jesus did.

Follow His example, and don't give up!