Archive for December, 2010

Second Chances

December 31st, 2010

Oh I feel so bad for the Tennessee Volunteers – the purveyor of second chances. If you did not know, twice this year, it appeared the Volunteers had victory in its hand as the clock expired, and twice, the officials gave the opposing team one second and a second chance to beat the Volunteers.

So here we sit at the end of 2010, the relative last seconds of the game called 2010. How did you match up against your goals? Did you achieve your resolutions from last year – or did you fail short? If you did, you will get a second chance to beat those resolutions, as the new year is upon us. Even though it feels like the end of the game, a new year provides a second chance towards victory. So even though its really just another day, use this ending of the year as a ‘life marker’- a line in the sand – and be transformed.

Look at these words of encouragement from Isaiah, which are actually the biblegateway.com’s verse of the day:

“This is what the LORD says— he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” – Isaiah 43:16, 18-19 New International Version, ©2010.

Are You Still That Person?

December 30th, 2010

In John Ortberg’s book, The Life You’ve Always Wanted, he tells the story of a young man who was, well grumpy.  As the years went on, his grumpiness didn’t change and people just got used to it, and would say “Thats old Frank, he’s just grumpy.”

How sad is that?  I know of people like this,for some reason the transformation of their lives stops. At some point, they just stop, if it ever started, transforming.  That doesn’t seem like a good approach to life.

It seems to be that each day we should continue to be transformed and to leave the old ways.  We should never give up on become more like our Savior.

1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.  Romans 12:1-2 (New International Version, ©2010)

Are you still that same old guy?

What Are You Working On?

December 29th, 2010

What are you working on?

No, I don’t mean what projects do you have in the woodshed, or what is going on at work.  I mean about yourself – What personal issue or personal transformation are you working on?

That’s an odd question, I suppose, but one that I hope that if you don’t have an answer for it you spend some time to think about.  I stumbled on this question last week when I read a tweet that mentioned an article about spotting your blind spot.  The article poses the question I just asked.  It also proposes that most people could not provide an answer, not because they don’t want to share, but they don’t have an eye for change.

Well, as I mentioned yesterday, it is my prayer that if you have been following this blog all year, or even for a week, that you have been challenged to change some aspect in your life and that you can identify the transformation.  I think this week, as we head into New Year resolution time, it may be time to consider yourself to see what opportunity for transformation still remains.  None of us are perfect, but the followers of the Christ have the Spirit that is willing to help if we ask.  It should be a good thing if we can identify the needs for transformation in our lives and live with the intent to allow that transformation to occur.

The book of James speaks briefly about examining yourself

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. James 1:22-25 (New International Version, ©2010)

So, let us not forget what we are, but lets look intently into the words, and find the answer to the question, and let transformation continue – the blessings await.

What are you working on?

Are You Transformed

December 28th, 2010

Sorry I am a little late today.  I have been spending the morning with family eating breakfast and talking.  And you if know my brother there is no way to think about blogging whilst he is going on and on with his stories and inquiries.

Anyway, this year I have blogged alot about transformation and change.  So today after hearing all of my brother’s questions, and with anticipation of some thoughts from later this week, here is a question for you to ponder today – What sort of transformation have you undertaken this year?  What is different about you now versus last December?  Do you feel transformed?

22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.  Eph 4:22-24

End of the Eggnog

December 27th, 2010

Well, what a wonderful weekend. We wrapped up a great week of celebration by unwrapping fantastic gifts for each others, by spending time with family, by enjoying 6 inches of snow and by remembering the birth of the Christ.  But now the eggnog ( non-alcoholic, of course) is gone, and bottom of the tree is empty and seems life goes back to the drudgery of it all

But it doesn’t have to be the way.  The joy around Christmas sprouts from the joy that is found in living a life full of love for others.  No, not the mamby bamby hug ever one sort of love, but a love that comes out of true concern and adoration.

So, as you enjoy the last of the eggnog, remember the carry the spirit along with you, as we see here in these words from Romans about real love in action:

9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. 20 On the contrary:

“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.  Romans 12:9-21