Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: How Integrity Blesses You

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“A righteous person lives on the basis of his integrity. Blessed are his children after he is gone.” (Proverbs 20:7 GW)

The Bible says that God blesses those who have integrity (Matthew 5:8). So what are the blessings you can expect when you live your life with authenticity and a pure heart?

Personal Confidence

When you have integrity, you become the kind of person that other people like to be around because you know who you are and where you’re going.

Proverbs 10:9 says, “People with integrity walk safely, but those who follow crooked paths will be exposed” (NLT, second edition).

When you don’t have integrity, it’s like walking on an icy path after a snowstorm. You’re putting every bit of your energy into trying not to fall. When you have integrity, you’re standing on solid ground.

A Lasting Legacy

Your greatest legacy is your integrity, because it will last from generation to generation. Everything else that you do gets lost. When you’re gone, your money will be divided among your family, and it’s going to be spent. Your work will be given to somebody else. All the trophies that you’ve earned are going to be thrown in the trash and taken to the dump.

But your character is going to be translated into the lives of the people around you and then into the lives of the next generation. It is a lasting legacy.

The Bible says in Proverbs 20:7, “A righteous person lives on the basis of his integrity. Blessed are his children after he is gone” (GW).

Rewards in Eternity

Matthew 25:21 says, “You are a good and loyal servant. Because you were loyal with small things, I will let you care for much greater things” (NCV).

We tend to think that the rewards are in the big moments of life, where everybody is watching. But it’s in the small moments that you show real integrity. Every small word of encouragement you give this next week will be rewarded eternally. Every small act of kindness will be rewarded in eternity. Every time you reject a temptation, you will be rewarded in eternity.

That’s the power of integrity and the difference it makes not just here but for eternity!

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Be blessed,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

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Blogging Thru The Bible · Numbers · The Bible

BLOGGING THRU THE BIBLE: What a Large Numbers {Numbers 1-5}

Book of Numbers is not a widely quoted book and it has an important part of the Bible. This week, we studied Numbers 1 – 5. It begins with taking a census. The census was taken when Isreal left Sinai one month after the tabernacle had been erected. The total number of people counted was 603,550.

We know taking the census is long and tedious, but this was a vital task because the fighting men were able to determine their military strength. Whenever we are at crossroads, it is important to take inventory of our resources and this will enable us to serve more effectively. Most importantly, in every task, we have Jesus with us. Trust in Him and He will lead you to victory.

Next, we see the organised camps

The nation of Isreal was organised according to tribes for several reasons:

  1. It is an effective way to manage and govern a large group;
  2. It made dividing the Promised Land easier;
  3. It was part of their culture and heritage;
  4. Made it easier to keep detailed family genealogies; and
  5. It made travelling much more efficient, as they have their own family banner.

And this is definitely the biggest campsites the world has seen!!

And it moves from Aaron and his descendants were appointed to the priesthood. We have our own priest, our LORD JESUS and the best part is we can put the guilt behind us and experience his love and forgiveness when we have a special relationship with God based on what Christ has done for us. REJOICE!

We also see that the every Israelite family to dedicate its firstborn to God. Finally, duties of each tribe were described. So many laws they had to follow then. 

Today, by Christ, we are free! We stand in Jesus’ righteousness. Let’s be glad and spread the love of Christ to everyone. 

Be blessed,

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Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: Integrity: What You Are When You’re Alone With God

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“God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.” (Matthew 5:8 NLT, second edition)

The Bible says in Matthew 5:8, “God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God” (NLT, second edition).

To “see God” means to experience the presence of God. Believers who have a pure heart get to feel the power of God. They get to know the purpose of God for their lives. They get to live in the peace of God. They experience the pardon of God.

Do you want to be one of those people? We don’t talk a lot these days about being pure in heart, but we do use the word “integrity.” To have integrity does not mean you are perfect, because if it did, none of us would have it!

So what does it mean to have integrity?

Integrity is wholeness.

A lot of people think of their life like a pie, and the different parts of their life are the pieces of the pie. This slice of the pie is my career. This is my work life. This is my spiritual life. Then this is my family life. That one is my social life. Then over here is my secret life — my compulsions, addictions, and the things nobody else knows about.

If you segment your life like that, you lack integrity, because your life is not a whole. Integrity means you’re the same person with everybody, in your speech, actions, and motives, no matter which part of life you’re dealing with.

Integrity is authenticity.

During plays in ancient Greek culture, there was one guy who would play multiple roles. He would come onstage wearing a mask and then go backstage to put on a different mask to play another role. This person was called the “hupokrites,” and it’s where we get the word “hypocrite.”

When you wear masks so that you appear one way in front of some people and another way for others, it shows a lack of authenticity. God wants you to be exactly who he made you to be, no matter who is watching.

Integrity is unmixed motivation.

It means you do the right thing, and you do it for the right reason. You have unmixed motivation and pure motives. You’re sincere and straightforward in every area of your life and with all people. You pray to talk to God and not to impress other people.

We’re interested in image, but God is interested in integrity. We’re interested in reputation, but God is interested in character. Reputation is what everybody thinks you are. Integrity is what you really are. Reputation is what you are in public. Integrity is what you are when you’re all alone with God.

God blesses those who have integrity. They get to be the friends of God.

“The LORD detests people with crooked hearts, but he delights in those with integrity”(Proverbs 11:20).

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Be blessed,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

John Maxwell · Leadership

LEADERSHIP: ABUSE OF POWER

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“And he wrote in the letter, saying, ‘Set Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retreat from him, that he may be struck down and die’.”  2 Samuel 11:15

Pittacus wrote, “The measure of a man is what he does with power.” Second Samuel 11 tells the story of a king who forgot that leaders wield power for one reason only – to serve. Consider the “Path to Abusive Power” in leaders:

Stage One: Surprise – “I get this?”
Stage Two: Self-Esteem – “I need this.”
Stage Three: Satisfaction – “I deserve this.”
Stage Four: Selfishness – “I demand this.”

By watching King David weave a tangled web following his sin with Bathsheba, we notice five common abuses of power that still trip up leaders today. Calvin Miller describes them this way:

  1. Drifting away from those disciplines we still demand of our people.
  2. Believing that others owe us whatever use we can make of them.
  3. Attempting to fix things up rather than make things right.
  4. Refusing to accept that we could be blindly out of God’s will.
  5. Believing that people in our way are expendable.

Be blessed,

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(Source: John Maxwell)

Motivation · Power Thoughts · Rick Warren

POWER THOUGHTS: Seven Ways to Be Merciful

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“God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” (Matthew 5:7 NLT, second edition)

In yesterday’s devotional, we talked about seven facets of mercy. Today, I want you to consider some personal application questions for each of the aspects. I want to challenge you to commit an act of premeditated mercy in each of these categories this week.

Wait. Isn’t there a tension between mercy and personal responsibility? Yes, there is. But I have personally decided that if I’m going to err, I’m going to err on the side of being too gracious, too merciful, and too forgiving. You can go overboard on mercy — just look at what Jesus did on the cross.

So, how will you be merciful?

Be patient with people’s quirks. Who is that person in your life who has irritating quirks? How can you practice patience with that person this week?

Help anyone around you who is hurting. Who around you is obviously hurting that you can help this week? If you can’t think of anybody, then you’re not paying attention. Look closer!

Give people a second chance. Who do you need to give a second chance to? How can you show that person mercy and compassion this week?

Do good to those who hurt you. Maybe you’re suffering from an old wound that you have not been able to let go of. You need to forgive and then turn it around for good. Who is that person in your life? Will you make a phone call or a visit this week?

Be kind to those who offend you. Who offends you? Maybe it’s a politician or a comedian that you can pray for. Maybe it’s a Facebook friend who has different views and says some pretty offensive things. How can you be intentional about showing kindness to that person this week?

Build bridges of love to the unpopular. Who is the first person who comes to mind when you think of an outcast? Who spends their lunch breaks eating alone or doesn’t seem to have any friends at soccer games? What specific thing will you do this week to bridge the gap between you and that person with love?

Value relationships over rules. Who is an unbeliever you could invite over for dinner in the next few weeks? Will you then step up and invite that person to church? This is your ministry of mercy.

Pray this prayer today: “Heavenly Father, your Word convicts me. I want your blessing in my life, and I want to be a merciful person. As I look at these seven things, I think of shortcomings and weaknesses in my own life. I pray that rather than just hearing the Word, I would do something about it. Give me the courage to be merciful. Give me the strength this week to step out in faith and do radical, premeditated acts of mercy that point others to you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.”

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Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: Seven Characteristics of Mercy

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“The wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy.” (James 3:17a NLT, second edition)

Mercy is like a diamond; it is multi-faceted. Today we’re going to look at seven facets of mercy, because I guarantee if you’ll learn how to be an agent of mercy, it will transform your relationships.

  1. Mercy means being patient with people’s quirks. How do you get more patience for your kids, spouse, or friends? The Bible says in James 3:17, “The wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy” (NLT, second edition). The wiser you become, the more patient and merciful you become.
  2. Mercy means helping anyone around you who is hurting. You cannot love your neighbor as yourself without being merciful. Proverbs 3:27 says, “Whenever you possibly can, do good to those who need it” (TEV). But God is not simply watching what you do. He’s watching your attitude: “[When you] show mercy, do it cheerfully” (Romans 12:8 NIV).
  3. Mercy means giving people a second chance. When somebody hurts us, we normally want to get even or write that person off. But the Bible says, “Stop being bitter and angry and mad at others. Don’t yell at one another or curse each other or ever be rude. Instead, be kind and merciful, and forgive others, just as God forgave you because of Christ” (Ephesians 4:31-32 CEV).
  4. Mercy means doing good to those who hurt you. Mercy is giving people what they need, not what they deserve. Why should we do it? Because that’s what God does with you: “Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because [God] is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful” (Luke 6:35-36 NIV).
  5. Mercy means being kind to those who offend you. You’ve got to be more interested in winning people to Christ than in winning the argument. Jude 1:22-23 says, “Show mercy to those who have doubts. Save others by snatching them from the fire of hell. Show mercy to others, even though you are afraid that you might be stained by their sinful lives” (GW).
  6. Mercy means building bridges of love to the unpopular. This is what I call premeditated mercy, because you intentionally build friendships with people who don’t have friends or who are not accepted at work or in society. When the Pharisees questioned why Jesus ate with tax collectors and other unpopular people, Jesus said, “‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’ For I have come to call not those who think they are righteous, but those who know they are sinners” (Matthew 9:13b NLT, second edition).
  7. Mercy means valuing relationships over rules. Romans 13:10 says, “Love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.” If you want to show mercy, put people before policies. Put their needs before procedures. Put relationships before regulations. Choose love over law.

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Be blessed,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Motivation · Power Thoughts · Rick Warren

POWER THOUGHTS: How’s Your Spiritual Appetite?

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“You must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment.” (1 Peter 2:2 NLT, second edition)

Are you hungry for God?

It is possible to maintain a spiritual hunger for God for the rest of your life. Here are five ways to keep a spiritual appetite.

  1. Remind yourself how much God loves you. The more you understand how much God loves you, the more you’re going to love him. The Bible says in Ephesians 3:18-19, “May you have the power to understand … how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God” (NLT, second edition).
  2. Stop filling up on junk food. You are a spiritual being with a God-shaped hole in your heart that only God can fill. When you try to fill it with salary, status, success, passion, possessions, power, prestige, or anything other than God, it’s not going to be fulfilling. Proverbs 15:14 says, “A wise person is hungry for knowledge, while the fool feeds on trash.”
  3. Make knowing God your number one goal. Happiness is a byproduct of knowing God. Jesus says in Matthew 6:33, “Seek first God’s kingdom and what God wants. Then all your other needs will be met as well” (NCV).
  4. Get into God’s Word every day. The Bible is food for your soul. Eating a meal once a week won’t keep you healthy. In the same way, you need to feed on God’s Word every day. “You must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment” (1 Peter 2:2 NLT, second edition).
  5. Appetite is influenced by association. If you hang out with people who only care about politics, that’s all you’re going to care about. If you hang out with people who only care about sports, that’s what you’re going to care about.

Join a small group for support, because whatever you talk about when you’re with others is what you’re going to be hungry for. Proverbs 2:20 says, “Join the company of good men and women, and stay on the paths of the righteous” (MSG/NLT, second edition).

Love and joy to you all,

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(Source: Rick Warren)

Blogging Thru The Bible · Numbers · The Bible

BLOGGING THRU THE BIBLE: Today We Begin! {3 Lessons, An Intro & Resources for Numbers 1-5}

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The Book of Numbers One Chapter a Day

I am overly happy that today we begin Book of Numbers.

Here’s 3 lessons from the first 3 chapters:

1.)  God numbering the warriors and the worshippers (the Levites) and the different roles of God’s people.  They all matter – they all count!

2.) God organizing their camps and putting His tent at the center – reminding me that God is to be the center our lives.

3.)  Look at how organized their camps are!  Our God is a God of order.

There are more golden nuggets tucked into these texts.  If we meditate on what we read – I believe God will speak to us mightily.  So I don’t want to give away all I’m learning now – I’ll save it for this Friday when we meet again here on the blog – but for now – here’s an overview of the Book of Numbers.

Book of Numbers Overview

Purpose: Numbers tells the story of how the nation of Israel prepared to enter into the Promised Land, how they were disobedient, and how they prepared to try again. Like the Nation of Israel, we are given second chances.

Author: Moses

Date: 1450-1410 BC

Setting: The Wildnerness of Sinai and the lands south and east of Canaan.

Key Verse: The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. (Numbers 6:24-25)

The book of Numbers begins with the children of Israel preparing for their journey to the Promised Land. They have received the law – and now a census must be taken. So, the people are counted (specifically, men for war). Then, the people are set apart for God and so, the journey begins.

With the beginning of the journey comes the beginning of the complaining. From food to leadership, the people are unhappy. They arrive at Kadesh, and the twelve spies are sent in. Ten come out with fear. Two, Joshua and Caleb, come out ready to do battle and possess what God has already given to them. Unbelief strikes the camp – and because of their unbelief, the current generation will not go into the Promised Land- and the wandering begins.

The ending is similar to the beginning. A new generation is preparing to go into the land. They are set apart and numbered.

The Layout of the Book:

  1. Preparation for the Journey (1:1-10:10)
  2. The First Journey to the Promised Land (10:11-14:45)
  3. Wandering (15:1-21:35)
  4. Approaching the Promise Land for the Second Time (22:1-36:13)

Throughout the book of Numbers, we see wandering and rebellion. We’ll be forced to take a deeper look at our own faith. Are we in a place of wandering – a place where we are stuck because we won’t live out our faith?

The book of Numbers is going to ask us to walk along side Israel, to learn from their mistakes, and to see our patient God of second chances as we head to the Promised Land of the abundant Christian life.

Keep track of all the books you have completed on this printable below.  Notice there are no dates on any of our reading plans so anyone can join us anytime.  There are no sign-ups or enrollments.

My Bible Reading Plan

Good Morning Girls UK will provide the accountability you need to soak in God’s word daily, grow in your walk with God and live well!

Number’s Resources:

Printable Bible Bookmark

Bookmark

Printable Short Version of the Numbers Journal

Cover Book of Numbers Short Journal

This is for those who are not purchasing the Paperback Journal.

This is not the same as the Paperback Journal – this eJournal has been created for low-cost printing on a home printer and does not include the Introduction to Acts, Verses of the Day or Reflection questions.

NEW Children’s Resources

I am so excited to share with you these fun new ways to bring your children along on this journey!

{Free Printable} The Book of Numbers Word Searches FOR KIDS!

Numbers Word Searches For Kids Cover

{Free Printable} The Book of Numbers Verse of the Day Copywork FOR KIDS!
Numbers VOD for Kids Cover

{Free Printable} Coloring Pages

Tara over at DoodlingThroughTheBible has been doodling through the Bible alongside us and she is committed to doodling through the Book of Numbers with us!  She makes a new coloring page every single day for your little ones.  Visit her daily to get your free printable there.  Here’s what a few of her doodles from the Book of Acts looked like.

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Here is this week’s Bible Reading Plan:
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Here are this week’s Group Discussion Questions

{If you do not have a group, use these for a personal time of reflection.}:

1
2
3

4

5

To print the 36 Discussion Questions for Numbers – click here.

The Verses of the Day:

I encourage you to choose which verse you’d like to memorize or meditate on.  The printable below includes all 5 verses of the day — for the entire week!

Print and cut them out and put them in the bathroom, kitchen, beside your bed and computer and use them for meditation throughout the week.

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. – Joshua 1:8

Numbers 1
Numbers 2

Numbers 3


Num 4-20[1]

Numbers 5

Numbers 1-5

Click HERE to print the Verses of the Day for Numbers 1-5

For Those Who Are New Here

You can join at our FB study group too here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/724894230988215/

We use SOAK Method for our study:

92H

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I’m so excited you are here!  Do not get discouraged if you fall behind . Don’t give up! Have a wonderful week.

**WAVES**

Happy studying girls.

Peace be with you,

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Motivate Me · Motivation · Rick Warren

MOTIVATE ME: God Is Always Present, Regardless of How You Feel

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“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” (Job 1:21 NIV)

When you are a baby Christian, God gives you a lot of confirming emotions and often answers the most immature, self-centered prayers so you’ll know he exists. But as you grow in faith, he will wean you of these dependencies.

God’s omnipresence and the manifestation of his presence are two different things. One is a fact; the other is often a feeling. God is always present, even when you are unaware of him, and his presence is too profound to be measured by mere emotion.

Yes, he wants you to sense his presence, but he’s more concerned that you trust him than that you feel him. Faith, not feelings, pleases God.

The situations that will stretch your faith most will be those times when life falls apart and God is nowhere to be found. This happened to Job. On a single day he lost everything — his family, his business, his health, and everything he owned. And then, for 37 chapters, God said nothing!

How do you praise God when you don’t understand what’s happening in your life and God is silent? How do you stay connected in a crisis without communication? How do you keep your eyes on Jesus when they’re full of tears? You do what Job did: “Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised’” (Job 1:20b-21 NIV).

Tell God exactly how you feel. Pour out your heart to him. Unload every emotion that you’re feeling. Job did this when he said, “I can’t be quiet! I am angry and bitter. I have to speak” (Job 7:11 TEV).

He cried out when God seemed distant: “Oh, for the days when I was in my prime, when God’s intimate friendship blessed my house” (Job 29:4 NIV).

God can handle your doubt, anger, fear, grief, confusion, and questions.

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Be blessed,

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(Source: Rick Warren)