Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Value of Family!

The value of family is beyond question critical to who we are and what we most treasure.  A weekend with my two daughters; one who lives in New York and the other who is away at school, made for a very emotional but complete experience.  The only thing that could have made it better would have been to have my son and his family join us.

Family doesn't come without challenges, but in the end all of those challenges are overcome by the love we have for each other.  That love is only enhanced by the common union we have in our faith in Christ.  Now we are not just a physical family but a spiritual family, united in one accord and serving the God we love and abide in.

But it gets better because in Christ our family is expanded to all believers, loving and caring for them as if they were our own children, brothers, sisters, moms and dads.  The scripture tells us in John 13: 34, 35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  Yes, that is a command not an option, we must love one another in Christ as if we were one family, one body in Christ.  We must celebrate the time we spend together, the words we share, the messages we write each other, and so forth.  Imagine all of us united in Christ as one amazing enormous loving family, wouldn't that solve most of this world's problems?  In Christ this can be a reality if we honor the scripture and love one another the way he loves us!  Just a little advice to go!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Changing Bad Habits!

John 14:23
23 Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him."

Yes, living God's word is about developing good habits and developing good habits means getting rid of the bad ones.  Changing habits is not always easy but definitely possible.  There is a great deal of research implying it takes 21 days to change a habit.  This means you have to change the behavior and then practice the new behavior for 21 days before it imprints; it becomes a habit.  Some would debate the number of days arguing it takes much longer to really change behavior, but the point is that developing good habits means practicing new behavior until it becomes our new habit.  That is a challenge we as believers must face when we live for Christ.  The Holy Spirit dwells within us as our comforter and helper, helping us to achieve the seemingly impossible.  The word verifies this as it tells us we can do all things through Christ, Holy Spirt, who strengthens us.

My challenge to each of you is to take the time to think about your habits, the good and bad, and then initiate a plan to change your habits so they all align with God's purpose for your life.  Can you do it?  Are you willing?  Will you at least identify one habit you know needs to change and the purposefully plan to change that habit?  If you answered yes, then try pulling out a monthly calendar and writing at the top the habit you plan to change.  Then start each day by looking at your calendar and committing to the change and ensuring the bad habit will not take place and the good one replacing it, will.  At the end of the day, look at the calendar and draw a big red X through the day if you were successful.  Soon you should see a consistent chain of big red X's going through the calendar.  If you revert back to the bad habit, don't mark the calendar and start the next day.  Soon the pattern will let you know how you are doing; remember you are not alone in this journey for He is with you!  Just a little advice to go!