Tag Archive | food for thought

Discernment

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I like this word.. discernment. It is the ability to tell right from wrong.. truth from error. This is critically important in our present day culture. So many things that are not true are presented as facts.. everyone is an expert. We need wisdom so we can tell the truth from the lies..that is not always easy. Fortunately we have the Holy Spirit to guide us into all truth. What that means for us is that there is a source we can go to and we can seek the truth about everything.. if we really want to know it.

Sometimes it is easier to just read something in a book and believe it.. the problem is that it may not be true.. unless that book is the Bible. There are no errors in the Bible, but there are many books that claim they are interpreting scripture.. in reality they are misrepresenting  it.. very troubling. Our only hope is to pray and seek clarity from the Lord .. to use the minds He has given us and to realize that His truth is not hidden from us. It is available if we seek it with our whole hearts, minds, and souls.. we need to desire it and to search for it and to make it important enough that we would die for it.

This is not a popular outlook in our narcissistic culture..we are constantly being sold a bill of goods. Our lives are to be filled with comfort.. remember anything goes.. don’t rock the boat or question things too deeply. You may cause division or create conflict if you stand up for what is right.. better to just roll over and be a peacemaker. There are times when there is no way to achieve peace.. relationships are messy and they don’t always end well. Life is complex and the road to the Kingdom is filled with potholes and traps.. we may fall if we are not careful.

So.. let’s be discerning people.. opening our eyes to the truth.. searching for it and believing that God is revealing it daily as we seek Him and His ways. Don’t blend in and don’t fit in.. stand up and speak out. Let’s pray for courage and strength in these times.. God knows we need it.

” When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future.”  (John 16:13)

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Take care of yourself

Do you ever say that to someone? I do and I mean it. What does that really mean? Does it sound selfish or self-centered? It is not. We are designed in such a way that if we don’t care for ourselves, we cannot care for anyone else.

So why is it so difficult? especially for givers. Users have no problem taking care of themselves.. in fact that is their life’s work. We can call that narcissism..a very big problem in our culture. Then there those of us who like to give and care for others. It is so easy to do this at the expense of our own well-being. We are adept at putting ourselves on the back burner..and we think it is the Christian thing to do. After all the Bible seems to be saying that we must put others before ourselves.

We are walking on a tightrope right now..because this is not a simple thing to understand. God does want us to care for others and to focus on the needs of those He puts in our lives..but not without caring for our own needs. We need to come and get filled up so we can give out of the overflow. If we put everyone else first our life will be out of balance and we will inevitably become grouchy, overly emotional, and just plain depressed. That is not God’s plan for our lives.

The most convincing argument for this comes straight out of the gospels. Jesus himself escaped from the crowds when He needed a break. He said no when it was the time to say no and He had boundaries with those around Him. If we look to His life we see an example of  how to live..it still works 2000 years later.

Take a look at this scripture.. you’re read it before.

“The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”

Notice anything?.. it presupposes that we love ourselves..it doesn’t say to love others instead of ourselves.. food for thought isn’t it?

Take good care of yourself until we meet again!