5 Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.
The key to engaging into true manhood is to tear out the weeds of passivity by the roots and get it out of our lives. The Scripture from Colossians names them. As men we struggle and fight with them.
Are you willing to kill them? Are you willing to get them out of your life? I like the commercial from Ram Trucks, “Grab Life By The Horns”. Grab that sin in your life by the horns and throw it down to the foot of the cross so Jesus can take it away.
We have discussed what it means, “Growing Up To Be Men” by Chuck Holton. I encourage everyone to look for it online or at your local book store and get it.
So, how do we engage?
When you choose to engage in each step of the process, it will turn the boy into a Man of God. These concepts are worth living by and worth teaching to our sons and grandsons.
We will get to study this week or online what it means to ‘ENGAGE’. Will you choose or will the passivity run rampant in your veins? The choice in yours.
Israelite men would chant a word, “Chazaq”! This word means, ‘My Courage Comes From Above’. Let that be our calling, men. Stand in that courage that comes from only the Father from above.
Strength and Courage
Coming up!! May 2 at Vermeer Global Pavilion, Vital Men is having a big event. Doors open at 5:30 pm along with food from Country Catering. The cost is $7.00 for a wonderful supper. We will be learning about what it means regarding, ‘Growing Up to be Men’. The featured speakers are Marty Schmidt from The Bridge in Ottumwa and Andrew Schmidt, from Celebrate in Knoxville. Music is by Now Serving 7 with Charlie Koopman from The Wave in Chicago, Illinois. Music kicks off at 6:30 pm with speaking ending at 8:30 pm. We are also featuring an obstacle course with great prizes!! Bring your sons, fathers, grandfathers, uncles, nephews, and friends. This is a great way to begin Tulip Time Week in Pella, Iowa!
Will the Men of God Please Rise Up?
5 By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death: “He could not be found, because God had taken him away.” For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.
We need every man to call arms and rise for the event coming on May 2. I believe the Lord has something for us that night, and it will cause a great impact in our region. When men come together surrendered and submissive to God, great awakenings happen.
God saw that Enoch was pleasing by the way he lived life. I believe that God is looking for men who are willing to obey his commands and decrees for such a time as this. It is by inviting and pursuing men to come and fellowship together that great things will happen. It will take all of us to band together in what it means in, ‘Growing Up to be Men’.
Strength and Courage
Romans 5:3-4 (NKJV) And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and character, hope.
Most of you are aware by now, that I rather enjoy bowhunting. Last week I mentioned that I had completed the research and application process of my annual alpine pilgrimage. This past week I have focused on researching my hunting areas, reading articles and preparing for a training regimen.
The past few years I have noticed a significant decrease in my fitness and endurance, making each year on the mountain a little tougher than the last. Elk hunting is hard and being in shape is certainly a boost to the potential for success. I have decided and set myself on a course and plan to get myself in the best shape I can for this year’s hunt.
While reading an article geared toward “mountain readiness”, I came across a quote from a gentleman by the name of Lazarus Lake and in it he said, “if you’re going to face a real challenge, it has to be a REAL challenge. You can’t accomplish anything without the possibility of failure.” These two sentences really struck me. I pondered them, and thought about how that applied to my goals for this fall. For me, part of the appeal of DIY, backcountry elk hunting is the challenge of it all. It’s pursuit of elusive game, in difficult terrain, in uncertain conditions. It tests a person’s metal. It pushes you to physical and mental extremes. By preparing the body to it’s utmost, the mind will be prepared to follow. The harder I work now, the greater the accomplishment will be this fall.
Isn’t that true of so much in life. Personally, I find greater satisfaction in accomplishing something that I truly had to work for. I’ve been blessed, no doubt, but in so many areas, God first required work from me, then blessed my efforts.
How can I apply this to my walk with the Lord. God graciously, no strings attached, offers the gifts of His love, grace and eternal life freely to us. However, how much more will we receive from knowing that we bring all that we can to the relationship? How hard am I really working to “know” Jesus? Do I read my bible and pray as often as I could?How hard am I really working to illustrate to others God’s glory? When faced with obstacles, opportunities to illuminate God’s power through me, do I quit, complain, lash out? What would God create in me, create for me if I pushed myself to my max to be the best me He’d have me be? What would happen? My guess…..’it would be a boost to the potential for success’. So, shouldn’t I be training my heart for God? Doing so, very well may not diminish the amount or severity of obstacles landing in my path. It will, however, better equip me to persevere. “Where the body is capable, so shall the mind go”, right?
Mark 4:17 (NKJV) and they have no root in themselves, and so endure only for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble.
Just a seed God planted and I have been strongly listening to. Where can you put in the work and prepare yourself, so that you may endeavor to persevere? May God bless you all.
In full pursuit of the greatest Trophy,
Is there any piece of equipment you have used at work or home that has proven itself and convinced you to be a loyal fan? Maybe it is a brand of vehicle, tires, tools, shoes, etc. that has worked well for you and will be what you turn to first when you need something new. Maybe when someone asks you for advice on what to buy, you give them your testimony on said product and encourage them to try it out. I have done the same with some businesses and services I have used. In every profession (doctor, mechanic, accountant, pastor, contractor, etc), there are some people I would trust with my life, and others I would not trust for one moment, even with my dog. Whether they have proven trustworthy or dishonest in the past will greatly influence your recommendations. Do we do the same with God’s Word? Do we find it true, once it has been tested?
Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. John 17:17
I am amazed at what some people will believe. In a world full spinning and twisting of the truth and flat out lies, one may become discouraged to believe anything is true. Just listen to the banter of politics for a day and you may wonder if the truth will ever be found out. They say seeing is believing, and it is almost as easy to dupe some with edited photos that seem to show evidence, yet is far from being true. The saying ‘if it sounds/looks too good to be true, then it probably is’ is true more often than not. The only exception we may ever find to this is when it is from God. The truth found in the Gospel of Jesus may sound too good to be true to some, but it is true. Using God’s word to change the attitudes of unbelievers (aka ‘bible bashing’) does not always work because most of them don’t accept God’s word as truth. The Gospel opens the eyes of those who are seeking the truth, and returns those of us who are believers to these truths time and time again. They are proven true as we live out his word in our lives.
Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” John 20:19
Even as Jesus walked among so many in his time, there were many who rejected him. Even some among his disciples did not always understand or believe in what he was saying. Have you ever wondered what you would have thought or done if you would have crossed his path 2000 years ago, or even today? The attitudes and actions of people have really not changed all that much in all the years we have been around. Schemers and scammers trying to get to your personal info through online, email, and phone ploys are nothing new. People like this have been around forever, its just the techniques they use that changes with technology. There are many who will lie, cheat, and steal to get what they want. Though there are many wolves in sheep’s clothing all around us, being able to discern the truth from the lies gets a little easier with practice, the more you see, and as you learn to trust his Spirit to lead you in all truth. As he sanctifies us, the more we will strive for what is true and abhor what is false.
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. I John 4:1
What truths do you hold closest to your heart? How has God proven himself and his word true to you? Maybe there are some verses that inspire you and have special meaning in your life. When you have opportunities, share these with others when you can. It is encouraging to your fellow believers, and reveals the truth found in God’s Word to those who may not know it. Brothers, as God enables us, let us strive to live a life that reflects the Spirit of Christ within us, full of grace and truth!
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Strength and Courage in Christ,
I know being a husband, a dad, and working with other people has caused me to ask questions I have a hard time answering. Then I after sitting in a question for awhile, I have more question. These questions are even harder than the first. I know I don’t have the answers and feel like they are so far above my ability to understand. Now I feel discouraged. So I look to other people and for every person I ask, I get a different answer. So where is my source that is steady, consistent, and worthy of my submission?
This week, I read…
Psalm 119:25 I lie in the dust;
revive me by your word.
26 I told you my plans, and you answered.
Now teach me your decrees.
27 Help me understand the meaning of your commandments,
and I will meditate on your wonderful deeds.
28 I weep with sorrow;
encourage me by your word.
I think the Word of God is supposed to be that source! Think about some of these phrases… You revive me by your word, you answered, you help me understand, and encouraged by your word. I don’t know about you, but revived, answered, helped, and encouraged are all things I need. Here I find that the source of all of those things is in God’s Word!
29 Keep me from lying to myself;
give me the privilege of knowing your instructions.
30 I have chosen to be faithful;
I have determined to live by your regulations.
31 I cling to your laws.
Lord, don’t let me be put to shame!
32 I will pursue your commands,
for you expand my understanding.
This starts with a desire to not lie to myself. How do I know if I am lying to myself? It is by the privilege of knowing God’s instruction, comparing it to my plan, and finding there is a gap. As a result, I can live the last three verses… I have chosen, I have determined, I cling to, I will pursue… because you have expanded my understanding.
So where is your source to be… revived, answered, helped, and encouraged? If it is anywhere but God’s word, it will always be temporary and lacking. When you put deep roots into and drink from God’s deep well of wisdom and love, you will find yourself living in the fullness of what He designed for you! If you need wisdom, encouragement, direction, or help go to the only One who is worthy to be that source for you!
So today, right now, GO to Jesus and ask Him to give you what you need and allow Him to fill you up!
Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus