Too many men believe the Christian Church is not relevant. Research also shows that men are struggling in many areas of their personal lives with depression, despair, loneliness, pornography, deception, debt, and feel spiritually empty. Our culture and lifestyle continue to ask for more from men without regard to a man’s dedication to their faith or family. Many of us have problems saying “enough is enough”.
I find too many believers are struggling with personal issues taking away the joy of their salvation. And then there are the many believers who have conflicts with others in the church. We may have forgotten what the Apostle Paul said to the Ephesians: “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you”.
In my library are several books that talk about the art of angling. Interestingly enough, angling is not a new endeavor, but is spoken about in several places in the Bible. Remember Jesus asked Peter to cast his line into the water to catch a fish that had a silver coin in its mouth, the annual temple tax – a stater – that would pay the fee for Jesus and Peter.
The West Coast Offense has lots of motion from the running backs and wide receivers. The many short passes in this offense allows gifted runners to break tackles in the open field and gain much yardage. I know I need help calling the plays in my life. I appreciate knowing that the ultimate Coach and Counselor runs my West Coast Offense.
As I faced my Maker at the last judgment, I knelt before the Lord along with all the other souls. Before each of us laid our lives like the squares of a quilt in many piles; an angel sat before each of us sewing our quilt squares together into a tapestry that is our life… I rose and slowly lifted the combined squares of my life to the light. An awe-filled gasp filled the air. I gazed around at the others who stared at me with wide eyes.
I should have paid more attention to the advertisement that read: “Raging roller coaster rides that are for the insane.” Rides like Tremors and Timber Terror go up steep inclines only to dump you back down to earth at 65 mph. Real fun if you’re half-crazy! Like riding a roller coaster, sometimes when life is a great challenge we should just close our eyes in prayer and trust that God will bring us through it.
A single decoy alone may not send the correct message to tempt a trophy buck; however, several 3-D decoys strategically placed in proximity of each other had a positive effect on the unsuspecting animal. Sometimes we are no different than that poor unsuspecting buck. Our greed, passion, lusts, and driven spirits cause us to forget about the temptations and decoys that will lure us away from our beliefs.
They assembled at the starting line for the 100-yard dash. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash but with a relish to run the race to the finish, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, and began to weep.
An Ironman Triathlon is about as grueling as it gets. Think about this – swim 2.4 miles in cold water, bicycle in the wind 112 miles, and then run/walk 26.2 miles in the heat of the day. The premiere athletes, who finish in the top two or three positions, complete the 140 mile course in eight and a half hours. For many the day is much longer, lasting up to 17 hours. While we live out our lives on earth, sufferings and trials can teach us to develop patience and perseverance.
Physical adultery does not originate in a vacuum; it begins with spiritual adultery in the heart. The hearts of the 10 northern tribes were unfaithful and corrupt. They had lost their way in their spiritual journey and obedience to God. The covenant God had formed with Israel on Mount Sinai in Exodus 24 and renewed in Joshua 8 was like that of a cherishing husband.
Jesus offers rest for us at the core of who we are when we surrender. We can be confident that He is walking with us, partnering with us in our journey (the yoke he offers) and thankful that the burden we are getting in exchange for the one we’re carrying will be easy to bear. Sounds like a no-brainer deal to me.
To share our faith, all we need is a willingness to tell other people about what we have discovered and how God has worked His will in our lives.
When those very tough trials come that test your faith, can you rest in God as your refuge and strength?
We need to stand strong for God’s truth, no matter what the rest of the world is telling us. We need to persevere in our faith and obedience.