Minute to Win It

Posted in Time, Victorious Living by PCraig on September 22, 2010

At a recent family gathering we played “Minute to Win It” and it was a blast.  The only downside was, I had the pressure on me to stack some nuts (the kind that attach to a bolt) in the fastest time.  I was doing great until the last one and they all fell, therefore I didn’t win the prize beef stick (those are good). 

Perhaps you can remember a time in your life when you were given an opportunity to win the game but couldn’t get it done.  Whether it was the last shot in a basketball game, an extra point kick, or spike at the volleyball net, youmight wish you could go back and have a “do over.”

The Bible says to “make the most of every opportunity” (Eph 5:16) in life.  A champion is able to rise to the occasion and focus on that moment alone.  Instead of letting your failure define you; let it fuel you, inspire you, and push you to live as though today was your last. 

What is it that God wants you to achieve?  Do you understand His destiny for your life?  When are you going to seize the moment and not allow another day to go by without taking a higher step toward God’s dream for your life? 

What would you do if you knew you only had one more day before you would stand before God?

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The Power of Everybody

Posted in Gifts, Involvement, Used of God by PCraig on September 20, 2010

I think one of the biggest hindrances to the church is the thought that “I can’t make that much of a difference.”  Some think that because they can’t give a large amount, they just won’t give anything.  Or, because we can’t serve EVERY week, we just won’t serve at all.  Others lack confidence or feel inferior to others and so they keep their gifts to themselves, or just use them at work or other places.  What a crying shame!

I personally believe that God is the giver of all good things, which includes the following:  money, time, possessions, breath, gifts, talents and ablilities to only name a few.  If you believe the same, then don’t you have an obligation to use at least a decent portion of that for the building of His Kingdom? 

I fully understand the feeling of “Well, someone else will do it.”  Or, “I’m sure someone will give, go, or do.”  But it is a flat out lie of Satan to paralyze you and keep you from being involved.  Satan and I have something in common, we both know the power of being used by God to accomplish something for His glory.  That’s why he works so hard to hold you back. 

You see it’s true, nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something!

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Harvest Time

Posted in Personal Growth, Seasons by PCraig on September 16, 2010

Autumn is right around the corner.  I already see the signs of leaves starting to change and the cooler temperatures at night.  For me, autumn is a season of harvest.  I love apple cider, fresh apples, and watching the farmers take in the acres and acres of crops. 

Let me challenge you to make it a season of harvest in your personal life.  How can you do that?  Allow me to offer a few suggestions:

  • Start reading the Bible each day for personal growth
  • Rearrange your finances to end the year strong
  • Prepare a harvest offering to give to God
  • Pick up an inspirational book to read
  • Give back in the schools, shelters, or other community organizations
  • Get involved in a ministry at church

I’m sure you can come up with your own list.  Take some time as autumn is coming and get prepared for a harvest of your own!

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Savior AND Lord

Posted in Lordship, Submission by PCraig on September 13, 2010

Is it easier to have Jesus as Savior rather than Lord?  It seems to me that we have a much easier time giving Jesus our sins than we do submitting to His Lordship over our lives daily.  What troubles me is the question, “Does He really offer that option?”  Can you pick Savior without making Him Lord? 

How is it in your life?  Are you trying for the “Save me from my sins and especially eternity in hell, but I’ll handle the direction of my life”? 

Maybe you’re not getting the full benefit of what Jesus came to bring because you haven’t fully surrendered.  Perhaps you’ve confused submission with weakness, or loss.  What I’ve discovered in my life is the more I submit, the more power I receive. 

Is this a struggle for you?  Be honest with yourself and ask, “Am I trying to have Jesus be my Savior without being my Lord”?

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Posted in Evangelism, Opportunity, witnessing by PCraig on September 9, 2010

We hear about opportunity, but how many of us really think about it every day?  Motivational speakers will refer to “Carpe Diem – seize the day”, and many think “Yeah, but that’s for others.”  Is it? 

God’s Word declares that “today is the day of salvation and now is the accepted time.”  Who is that intended for?  Could it be for your next door neighbor?  Or, grocery clerk?  Or, co-worker?  Are we not only missing our opportunity to be used of God to reach someone else, but we are also hurting their opportunity to know Him? 

This weekend is Back to Church Sunday and our goal is to double the church in one day by everyone inviting one.  My prayer is that we won’t miss our opportunity to be used of Him and delay someone’s opportunity to be reached for God.  Let’s lift up our eyes, stop thinking so much about ourselves and watch for opportunities over the next few days to seize the day for God!

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Hold the Bragging

Posted in Boasting, One Year Bible by PCraig on September 8, 2010

Something that has always bugged me is people who brag on themselves.  It must have bothered Jesus as well, because He told people to take a lowly position instead of seeking a high one.  In one story He said to sit at the back of a table rather than toward the head, that way you won’t be embarrassed when you’re asked to move down a notch. 

In 2 Corinthians 10:17 Paul says to “boast in the Lord” rather than boasting in ourselves.  After all, what are you really without the Lord?  He goes on to say that commending ourselves is not what counts, it is when the Lord commends us that matters. 

So, don’t worry about bragging about what you have, can do or have done, instead wait for someone else to notice.  Just wait and be patient.  If it’s worth bragging about, someone will do it for you.  If not, then it would be better to keep your mouth shut anyway.  No one really likes a bragger.  Instead of taking time to brag about past triumphs, why not go out and make a difference right now?  It will just give the Lord more to brag about one day when you stand before Him and it really counts.

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Sowing & Reaping

Posted in Generosity, Giving, One Year Bible by PCraig on September 7, 2010

There is no more important principle to learn in life, than that of sowing and reaping.  This is explained in detail in 2 Corinthians 9:6-11. 

Let me break it down for you:

                If you sow little – you’ll reap little

                If you sow generously  – you’ll reap generously

                God loves cheerful givers

                God provides the seed you need

                You are blessed to be a blessing

I’m so glad I learned the joy of giving generously to God early in life.  My parents were great examples of living generous lives so I could find out the rewards of generosity.  If you have yet to learn this, or didn’t have a good example of it at home, then read this passage and try it out yourself.  You’ll discover what many people have, you can’t out-give God!

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Healthy Eating

Posted in Attitude, Mind by PCraig on September 2, 2010

My wife and I are both trying to get back to healthy eating.  Let’s just say we’ve had too much fun eating this summer!  (Too much ice cream mostly)  There are signs that you need to get back to healthy eating, such as clothes fitting snug, not as much energy and the scale. 

What about signs that you need to get back to healthy eating spiritually?  Here’s a few I thought of:  bad attitude, crabby, extreme sarcasm, negative outlook on life, lack of spiritual energy and desire to serve, selfishness.  You can make your own list, but I believe these reveal a need to push away from the TV, toxic relationships, gossip magazines, and other nonsense and pick up the Bible.  You know the adage – “Garbage in, garbage out.” 

So, what kind of diet changes do you need to make?  Have you had too much fun with things like ice cream over the summer and need to get healthy physically?  Or, are their mindless hours wasted in front of the TV, or discussions with “friends” that lead to negative thoughts? 

What are some things you need to take out of your life and what do you need to put in its place?

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Posted in Christian Lifestyle, One Year Bible by PCraig on September 1, 2010

Did you know that you have been appointed to the office of ambassador?  Not of the United States, France, Canada, or Mexico, but of heaven itself! 

According to 2 Corinthians 5:20 every believer has been selected to represent the kingdom of heaven on the earth.  What an awesome privilege and what an awesome responsibility. 

Be careful not to squander your appointment and give the kingdom you represent a bad name.

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