Motivation · Power Thoughts

POWER THOUGHTS: Who Will Be in Heaven Because of You?

“Let the dead bury their own dead. You go and proclaim the Kingdom of God” (Luke 9:60 GNT).

When you become a follower of Christ, God fills you with his Holy Spirit. The proof of the Holy Spirit in you is not some emotional experience. The proof that you have God’s Spirit in you is if you are going. Are you telling anybody about the Good News?

Jesus said in Luke 9:60, “Let the dead bury their own dead. You go and proclaim the Kingdom of God” (GNT).

What in the world does he mean by that statement? It sounds pretty callous. But what he’s saying here is that you need to be indispensible. There are some jobs in life that anybody can do, but there are some jobs that only a believer can do. Only a Christian can tell other people about Christ. Only a Christian can tell other people how to get to Heaven. Only a Christian can show Christ’s compassion the way Christ wants it shown.

God wants you to be indispensible. Let the people who are spiritually dead do the things that anybody can do. Choose to spend more of your life doing things that only you can do.

There’s a lot of stuff you can spend the rest of your life doing that isn’t going to matter at all when you get to Heaven.

But there is something you can do that will make an eternal difference. Is anybody going to be in Heaven because of you? What kind of legacy are you going to leave? The greatest legacy is having somebody come up to you in Heaven and say, “I’m here because of you.” That’s using your life in a valuable way.

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Love and joy to you all,

(Source: Rick Warren)

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Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: Two Ways to Examine Your Experiences

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“Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith” (2 Corinthians 13:5 NLT).

An unexamined experience is worthless.

There are people who are 50 years old who haven’t lived 50 years. They’ve lived one year 50 times. They’re still making the same mistakes, because they never stop and extract the lessons. They never stop to ask, “What happened in this last year, and what can I do differently so that I am living life better?”

The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 13:5, “Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith” (NLT).

What does that mean? It means you take some time to review the experiences of your life, and you look for two things:

Look for benefits. What did you really enjoy in your life? Don’t just say, “I really enjoyed that job.” Ask, “What was it about that job that I really loved?” Don’t just say, “I really liked that class.” Ask, “What exactly about that class did I like? Why was it so fulfilling to me?” You’ll get little clues about where you should be headed with your life.

Look for patterns. Particularly, you want to look for patterns in your failure. Because when you fail, you tend to do it the same way every time. So you look and say, “Where have I failed in the past? What patterns do I keep repeating?” You don’t look at it to beat yourself up but because you want to be different. Those who ignore the mistakes of their past are likely to repeat them. This was the problem with the Israelites. Their trip to the Promised Land should have only taken a few weeks, not 40 years. But they refused to learn from their experiences and God’s tests. Each failed test meant one more lap around the desert.

The Bible says in Job 32:7, “The longer you live, the wiser you become” (The Message). That verse is a possibility, not a promise. I know a lot of people who are old and dumb. Wisdom does not automatically come with age. Maturity is when you extract meaning from the everyday experiences of life.

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Bless you,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

 

Motivation · Power Thoughts · Rick Warren

POWER THOUGHTS: If You Believe It, Then Do It

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says” (James 1:22 NIV).Yesterday, we looked at Mark 12:30: “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength” (NLT). And one way to look at this verse is to focus on loving God with all your talk, all your feelings, all your thinking, and all your acting. God shaped you to be primarily a talker, a feeler, a thinker, or a doer.

Talkers love God with their hearts. Feelers love God with their souls. Did you know that you can also love God with your intellect? Thinkers love God with their minds. When you’re developing and strengthening your mind, it is an act of worship.

Thinkers love Bible study. Psalm 119:97 says, “How I love your law! I think about it all day long”(GNT).

People who are thinkers fall in love with the Bible when they become believers. There is no other book in the world like it! It has the answers to life’s questions, including: Why am I here? Where am I going? What is the purpose of life? Does my life matter? What’s the past? What’s the future? Where did I come from?

We need thinkers, because the world needs consideration. Somebody has to be thinking through complex issues and the implications of what the rest of us are doing. We need people who think through tough problems and bring solutions to the table. That’s why we need scientists, writers, philosophers, and innovators.

But thinkers have to be careful to practice humility. The Bible says, “Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom” (Proverbs 3:7a NLT). Why? Because God is God, and you’re not.

Humility is a choice. Not once in the Bible are you ever told to pray for God to humble you. It says to “humble yourself before the Lord.” It’s a choice. Humility is something you do to yourself. Nobody else can do it to you. They can humiliate you, but they can’t make you humble. In essence, humility is total dependence on God. It’s not denying your strengths; it’s being honest about your weaknesses.

Thinkers also need to be careful to practice what they know. If you know it, then do it! James 1:22 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says” (NIV).

God’s Word is our manual for life and that’s why he wants up to do the things he ways we should do. He’s our Creator, and he knows the best way we should live. The great news is that God is always right there with us, helping us to follow his instructions.

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Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Blogging Thru The Bible

BLOGGING THRU THE BIBLE: Something New is Coming This Fall…

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I am so happy to announce that GMG UK will be hosting a bible study coming this autumn titled “REST and RELEASE”.

This study will run from October 1st – October 31st!

A note from Courtney:

During my time of rest, I realized how deeply I needed to thoroughly release every worry, fear, pain, sorrow, frustration, sin and burden to the Lord.  Without releasing all the things that keep me up at night, I could not find rest.

I have learned that Resting and Releasing my burdens –is not a one time event.  It is something that daily I have to strive to do, to find peace.

Do you struggle to find rest for your soul, on the hamster wheel of life?

Do you feel like your load – your portion in life – is a bit too heavy and wonder what God is doing or why you must struggle and wrestle so much?

Do you wish you could just release it all?

Me too.

So I took those feelings to God’s Word and looked for answers and then I took those answers and how they intertwine with my life, to my keyboard and began writing.  And a 4-week Bible study was born titled:

Rest and Release

 

I really hope you will make plans to join me for this special month together.  I’ll be back in a few weeks with more details but for now…Mark your calendars!

Spread the Word!

Share this post with your friends!

I can’t wait to take this journey with you!

 

SOAK method:

92H

And the Bible Coloring  Bookmark:

Bible Coloring Chart Bookmark 2

Peace be with you all,

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Motivation · Power Thoughts

POWER THOUGHTS: You’re Not Just Wanted; You’re Needed!

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“We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT).

The reason you have value is because of what God says about you, not because of what other people say about you.

Many people lack self-esteem. They don’t feel good about themselves because they’re always trying to pump themselves up by the kind of clothes they wear, the kind of car they drive, and the things they say. They’re constantly striving to feel better about themselves because they really don’t accept themselves — which is rebellion against God.

If God wanted you to be somebody else, you wouldn’t exist. But God wanted you! He made you to be you. We know as believers that real self-esteem comes from three facts:

  1. God created you.
  2. Jesus died for you.
  3. God’s Spirit lives in you.

The Bible says, “We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10 NLT). The New Testament was written originally in Greek. The Greek word for “masterpiece” is “poema.” It’s the word we get “poem” from. God says, “You’re my poem. You’re my masterpiece. I don’t want you copying somebody else. I’ve put gifts in you — heart, abilities, personality, and experiences — and I want you to use them.” You have worth because of what God says about you and has done for you.

You’re not just wanted. You’re needed! The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 12:4-6, “There are different spiritual gifts, but the same Spirit gives them. There are different ways of serving, and yet the same Lord is served. There are different types of work to do, but the same God produces every gift in every person”(GW).

You are needed. You’re needed in your church. You are needed in your community. You are needed in this world. If you weren’t needed, God would not have made you. He brought you here to make a contribution with your life. And everybody is needed.

There are no little people in the family of God. Every part is necessary. Do you know what the most important light is in my house? It’s not the big chandelier in the dining room. It’s the little dinky light I turn on so that when I get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night, I don’t stub my toe.

Every role is important. You are important. You have value because God said so and because he paid such a large ransom for your life when he sent his Son, Jesus, to die on the cross for you.

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Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Motivation · Power Thoughts

POWER THOUGHTS: Five Things Forgiveness Is Not

“Love isn’t selfish or quick tempered. It doesn’t keep a record of wrongs that others do” (1 Corinthians 13:5b CEV).

There’s a lot of faulty thinking about forgiveness. The act of forgiveness gets watered down. It gets abused. It gets cheapened.

What is forgiveness really? Take a quick test by answering “true” or “false” to the following statements:

  1. People should not be forgiven until they ask for it.
  2. Forgiveness includes minimizing the offense and the pain that was caused.
  3. Forgiveness includes restoring trust and reuniting a relationship.
  4. You haven’t really forgiven until you’ve forgotten the offense.
  5. When I see someone else hurt, then it is my duty to forgive the offender.

If you study the Bible, you’ll discover that all five of those statements are false.

Before we talk about what forgiveness really is, we have to talk about what it is not. Here are five things forgiveness is not:

1. Forgiveness is not conditional. In other words, it’s not based on somebody else’s response. Real forgiveness is unconditional. It’s not earned. It’s not deserved. It’s not bargained for. It’s not paid for. It’s not based on some promise that you’ll never do it again. If you say to someone “I’ll forgive you if . . . ,” that’s not forgiveness. That’s called bargaining.

2. Forgiveness is not minimizing the seriousness of the offense. There is a big difference between being wounded and being wronged. Being wounded is something that is accidental and does not require forgiveness. When you are wronged, someone intentionally meant to hurt you, and that requires forgiveness.

3. Forgiveness is not resuming a relationship without changes. The Bible teaches that forgiveness and restoring relationship are two different things. Forgiveness is instant. Trust must be built over a long period of time. Forgiveness is your part in reconciliation. But for a relationship to be restored, the offender has to do three other things that are unrelated to forgiveness: Demonstrate genuine repentance, make restitution whenever possible, and rebuild your trust by proving he or she has changed over time.

4. Forgiveness is not forgetting what happened. It’s impossible to try to forget something. When you’re trying to forget something, what are you focusing on? The very thing you want to forget. And whatever you focus on, you tend to move toward.

The key isn’t forgetting. The key is learning to see it through the lens of grace and God’s sovereignty and discovering how he can turn even bad things into good in your life if you’ll trust him and respond in the right way.

5. Forgiveness is not my right when I wasn’t the one that was hurt. Only the victim has the right to forgive. You can’t forgive people who haven’t hurt you.

There is always a cost to sin. And there is always a cost to forgiveness. That’s why you have to understand what forgiveness is not before you can look at what forgiveness really is.

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Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Motivation · Power Thoughts

POWER THOUGHTS: God Wants You to Really Live

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“Jesus [said] … ‘I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of’” (John 10:10 The Message).

Jesus did not come to make life perfect for us. Rather, he came to give us a life connected to him, so that no matter what situation we face, we are eternally attached to the source of true life.

What would a life connected to Jesus look like? Keep in mind that a full and abundant life in Christ involves all of you, not just your spirituality.

How do you think your constant connection with Christ will affect you mentally or emotionally? For instance, how would a life connected to Jesus help you with stress and worry?

What does your health have to do with living a full and abundant life? Why would your physical health be intertwined with your spiritual health?

To live a full and abundant life, instead of trying harder, trust Jesus more, believing in faith that he is guiding us to where we need to go.

Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Prayer · Rick Warren

PRAYER: 5 Evening Prayers to Close Your Day

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Evening Prayer for the Family

Heavenly and merciful Father, as we come to the end of the day, I pray that You will spread your protective arms over me and my family. Cover us with your protecting angels and keep us well and safe from all harm and spiritual attacks.

Almighty Father, I count myself blessed for the wonderful family members You’ve bound me with, though I may not always appreciate them. Give us peace and love towards one another. Quell the quarreling tongue. Bring us close to each other.

I pray for my family members who are not Christians, who have not given their lives to Christ. Bless them, oh Lord, with understanding and wisdom, that they would come to know you and have a relationship with you. In Jesus all-powerful name I pray, Amen!

Prayer Before Sleep

Dear God, as I lay down to sleep, release the stress and tension in my body. Calm my thoughts and remove all restlessness.

Heavenly Father, as I close this day, I thank You for all the blessings in my life – family, friends, love, hope, and a secure future. I thank You for Your presence in my life, and I pray that You give me wisdom and courage to deal with everything that comes my way tomorrow.

Heavenly Father, as I close this day, I thank You for all the blessings in my life

Help me to trust You with my life. Direct my steps and let me walk in Your ways. Dear Father, continue speaking to me every moment of everyday and allow me to know the perfect peace that only You can provide.

Above everything, protect my mind and actions so that the enemy might not get through to me. Lord, I pray and ask that You give me the wisdom to deal with my circumstances, light my path way through the dark tunnel. Grant me restful sleep tonight, in Jesus name, Amen!

Evening Prayer for Safety

Lord of Hosts, Gracious Father, and Protector of mankind, I pray to You today for safety and protection. Knowing Your promise to keep us from harm, I believe and trust that my family and myself are safe in Your protective arms.

In Your Word, You advise us that the enemy comes to kill, steal and destroy. On my own, I am powerless against such evil but through You I am a conqueror.

You promised that whatever we bind on earth, will be bound in heaven. Therefore, I bind all traps that the devil has set on my path. Every harm that he has conjured, I bring down, in the mighty name of Jesus. As for evil intents, I ask You to get them away from my hearing, sight, feeling, thought, touch, and sense.

Matthew 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven. And whatsoever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Lord, help us to be aware of wrong thoughts that enter our minds and, when they do, let us not sit and take the beating from the enemy but we can cast down every wrong thought with Your Word. Lord, I come against every mind-binding spirit and every other evil spirit, in the name of Jesus.

Thank You for providing protection and safety even before I asked. I pray this, believing in Your goodness and love, now and forever, amen.

Prayer for a Blessed Night

Lord, as I come to this day’s end, I give You thanks for all the blessings You’ve bestowed upon me today. I had a troublesome day but I got through it because You provided the strength, wisdom, peace, and safety to empower me.

Now that I am done for the day, I ask for one more thing: a blessed, peaceful night. Let me not sin against You in thought or deed. Rather, allow me to spend the time reflecting on Your goodness and grace.

Now that I am done for the day, I ask for one more thing: a blessed, peaceful night

Lord, thank You for Your unfailing love and that nothing can separate us from You. Lord, help me to be patience as I wait for Your promises to be manifested. May I not fret or complain, nor even worry, for You have got me engraved in the palm of Your holy righteous hand. Father, thank You in Jesus name, Amen.

I pray all this trusting and believing in our Lord Jesus’ name, amen.

God bless.
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Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: Let God Breathe New Life into Your Healthy Efforts

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“We will never turn our back on you; breathe life into our lungs so we can shout your name!” (Psalm 80:18 The Message) 

The Bible says, “We will never turn our back on you; breathe life into our lungs so we can shout your name!” (Psalm 80:18 The Message)

Breathing is one of the few functions of your body that you do automatically — but it can also be done mindfully. When you remember to breathe deeply, you can actually clear your body and mind. By slowing your breathing, you can lower your heart rate and your stress level! Breathing is a powerful way to strengthen your body.

Mindful breathing is a reminder that your need for intimacy with God is like your need to breathe in air. King David sang, “I live and breathe God” (Psalm 34:2).

God can breathe new life into you and your efforts to become healthier. He says, “I will put breath into you and bring you back to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD” (Ezekiel 37:6b TEV).

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Talk It Over

  • What does it mean to “live and breathe God”? Why is this significant to your success in getting healthy?
  • What does the truth that God can breathe new life into you mean to your efforts to become healthy and strong?
  • Taking five slow, deep breaths before you eat can help you eat less and enjoy the food more. Try this during your next meal. How does it affect the way you eat and the way you feel during and after the meal?

 

Bless you,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

 

Motivation · Power Thoughts

POWER THOUGHTS: How Can You Maintain Your Enthusiasm?

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“Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” (Romans 12:11-12 NIV).

In order to reach your goals, you have to figure out how to maintain your enthusiasm over the long haul.

The influential American writer, Ralph Waldo Emerson, said, “Nothing great is ever accomplished without enthusiasm.” I believe that with all of my heart. I have found it to be true in my life. You’ve got to have passion, you’ve got to have enthusiasm, or you’re never going to make it to the finish line.

Most people would consider me an enthusiastic person, and I am. But I haven’t been an enthusiastic person for a week or a month. My enthusiasm has not waned over a year or five or 10 years. I have been consistently enthusiastic about the goals that I’ve set for more than 30 years.

How do you do that? How do you stay enthusiastic day after day in spite of delays and difficulties and dead ends and problems and pressures and criticisms? How do you stay enthusiastic for more than 30 years?

Positive thinking is not enough. Pulling yourself up by your psychological bootstraps is not enough. Talking yourself into optimism is not enough.

The way you stay enthusiastic for a lifetime is found in the word “enthusiasm.” The word “enthusiasm” comes from the Greek word en theosEn is the Greek word for “in.” Theos is the Greek word for “God.” So en theos means to be “in God.”

When you get in God, you will be enthusiastic. It’s the kind of enthusiasm that isn’t affected by the economy or the weather or your circumstances. It’s eternal because you are tied to the eternal God. You are in Christ.

Paul tells us how to do this in Romans 12:11-12. He says, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” (NIV).

If you want to reach your goals this year, you need to get God’s power by being joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer.

Pray this prayer today: “Dear God, I don’t want to go another day without you in my life, controlling every part of my heart. I offer you my body. I dedicate myself to you. In light of all you’ve done for me, I give myself as a living sacrifice to you as a spiritual act of worship.

I humbly admit that I need help. I want you to help renew my mind. Help me to think the way you want me to think. Please forgive me for my pride. I don’t want to think more highly of myself than I should. My faith needs to grow, and I need your help to set goals that can be measured so I can manage them. Forgive me for trying to change on my own.

I want to fill my life with love. I want to fill my life with you. Help me to get group support. Help me to take delight in honoring other people, to focus on giving my life away so that you can take care of my needs. I want to nurture my enthusiasm by being in you. Help me to be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer. I give myself to you. In your name I pray. Amen.”

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Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)