Aside

God Doesn’t Care if I Steal

My friend Andrew once stole a candy bar from a gas station. He told me later that day, “Dude, it’s cool. Don’t worry about it, Jesus forgives me; he washes away all my sins.” That sort of logic is pretty hard to argue with, until you realize that Paul was dealing with the same thing.

I remembered this quote of his from Galatians “For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love” (Galatians 5:13).

The temptation to use God’s forgiveness as a carte blanche is an old one, but it’s dangerous and subtle. Stealing a candy bar might feel like living in freedom, but it’s actually living in slavery to your sinful ways. God’s forgiveness is a gift, not a loophole.

I was really mad at Andrew, I told him he was wrong, but when I look at the second part of what is written in Galatians, I’m not sure I see myself: “Use your freedom to serve one another in love.”

I may not abuse my freedom to justify stealing candy, but I’m not sure I use my freedom to serve those around me either. I’m often satisfied with not doing the wrong thing, even though I may not be doing the right things. As hard as it is to abstain from evil, it is much more difficult to step into goodness.

Doug

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Food For Thought

DATING and the Single Parent

Dating and the Single Parent – Save $14

Dating and the Single ParentDating and the Single Parent by Ron L. Deal

Single parents who are dating or want to begin a dating relationship wonder, How will dating affect my children and my parenting? They probably have figured out that “dating in a crowd” is complicated. Now they’re looking for help.

Ron Deal, who has counseled single parents and remarried couples for many years, helps single parents – as well as those who date them – navigate the potential pitfalls involved. He gives perspective on when a relationship may be harmful to the children as well as how it can be a blessing to all. Always at the forefront is the goal of strengthening families. Includes questions for individual or group study.

Niceness Isn’t Always Nice

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The price of always being nice …

1.     The “nice” person tends to create an atmosphere that keeps others from giving honest feedback.  This limits growth.

2.     The “nice” behavior leaves uncertainty in others in that they can not be sure of support in crisis situation that demand candor or in confrontation with others.

3.     “Nice” behavior stifles growth by depriving others level feedback and a “real” person to relate to.   This tends to force others to turn their aggression inward against themselves.  Guilt and depression can follow.

4.     The chronic “niceness” leaves others uncertain whether the relationship could withstand a conflict or sustain angry, spontaneous, confrontation.  Intimacy is limited by a felt need to be constantly on guard.

      5.      “Nice” guys are more subject to periodic rage explosions, which erupt                            unexpectedly when others are unprepared for it.

       6.     Physical ills can abound!

       Therefore, it’s not really nice to play nice!

 

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So love and enjoy the people who treat you right.. seek them out, regular-like! Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. Look carefully in each picture for the cat as it makes its way down from the roof to the dog.

So love and enjoy the people who treat you right.. seek them out, regular-like! Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. Look carefully in each picture for the cat as it makes its way down from the roof to the dog.

The story behind this picture is this:
Every day – at the same time – she, the dog, waits for him, cat.
Sometimes she barks to call him.
He comes; they rub and greet each other and they go for a walk.
They have done this for 5 years and no, they don’t belong to the same owners. The owners didn’t know until neighbors, seeing them together so frequently, commented to the cat’s owner, who then followed the dog home and discovered it was a distance away, not in a house close by or next door. How it started no one knows.

Wouldn’t it be great to have friends like this, always there, no words needed, they just intuitively recognize the value of each other in their lives and act accordingly. Live, Laugh, Love. Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. The way we cope with it is what makes the difference.

A wise person once said, “There comes a time in life, when you walk away from all the drama and people who create it. You surround yourself with people who make you laugh, forget the bad, and focus on the good. So love the people who treat you right, pray for the ones who don’t. Life is too short to be anything but happy.” It is a choice.

Falling down is a part of life, getting back up is living.

What Does the Manual Say? Chapter 6

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Marriage is a matter of life time commitment. It was a law put into place by God.  God wanted a place of security for “family”, for mothers and babes and Relationships.  Keep in mind that God came up with Laws, rules, or “just say No”, for reasons that are good for You, me the children and family, not for Himself! He put life into place and gave us instructions how it would work out best, considering He was going to pass out some ‘free-will’ too, I think He did a great loving thing here. However, That damned devil isn’t going to have it! I mean he isn’t going to Hell alone that is! He plans on stealing as many humans that Jesus died for, from Him as he can. Today, it looks like he is taking a lot with him.

Recently I heard a teaching from Adrian Rogers for which I had to go back and rewind the tapes numerous times to write down what was said:    

Adultery is a sin against the “Home”. Innocent children’s lives are torn apart every year by Adultery.  The man who commits adultery tells his child, ” your mother is not worth much.” And he tells his children, “Your father is a liar and a cheat.”  Furthermore, Honor is not nearly as important as pleasure. “In, fact my child, my own satisfaction and pleasure are more important than you are.” (And, of course, vice versa.)

God established monogamous marriage to meet the deepest emotion physical psychological & spiritual needs of a child. Children need a home and sexual faithfulness is the glue of the family which is the basic foundation of society.

Why is Adultery such a hurtful, heinous, damning, terrible hellish sin? Because Adultery is a sin against ‘Self’. (see Corinthians 6:18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body )  There is no sin that does as much damage physically and psychologically.  (Consider  STD’s, Aids, cancer, abortions, depression, mistrust, division, separation & divorce) oh, and  Safe sex?….   God’s sex wasn’t made to be dangerous!     (Romans 2:22   You who say that people should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? 23 You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? 24 As it is written: “God’s name is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.)    …. end of insert sermon notes….

We who call ourselves Christians, we commit another form of adultery against Jesus (are we not His Bride?) when we put ourselves on the Throne in the middle of our “World”.  Or maybe when we put our Desires first, instead of God’s, our Pleasures,… our Happiness, our must watch TV even, before God… so everyone of us can hurt from adultery, but Jesus, God hurts too…Especially when He heard us commit to Him. What does our relational walk and talk glorify?

 

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LOVE IS….. a many splendored thing…. like a clear sparkling diamond, it is multi-faceted, deep, real, lasting…… and what else?

LOVE IS..... a many splendored thing.... like a clear sparkling diamond, it is multi faceted, deep, real, lasting...... and what else?

Love is not what “the world” defines as love. Love is not “Lust” nor “sexual attraction”. “Beauty” is an attraction that can deceive. Satan, was a beautiful angel. He is beautifully deceptive today. (Read “THE BEAUTIFUL SIDE OF EVIL” someday.) The flesh would have you believe that self gratification is “love”. But that is, “self-love”, just self gratification, with a barter added on. I’ll give you this if you give me that. Lets look at what REAL LOVE is……. You’re going to want it the next time. Lets gather the truth about it.