My Friday morning routine: Open eyes. Crawl out of bed. Prep for the day by splashing water on my face, shaving, getting dressed, etc. Head to kitchen. Start Keurig. Wait for Keurig to brew coffee. Gulp down first swallow. Ahhh ... now ready to face what lies ahead!
1. Are you ever guilty of taking someone or something "for granted?" If you are anything like me, you would have to answer (if you are going to answer honestly!) with a resounding "YES!" All of us far too often take the blessings we receive from the hand of God without much thought of saying "thank you, God!" Now if you are questioning this, let me ask you a few questions. Did you eat or drink anything today? Well, did you thank God for the ability to swallow? Some cannot do so. Obviously you are able to read (if you are currently reading this post) - so have you thanked God for the ability to see and to read (think about those who are blind and illiterate in our world). And when was the last time you thanked God for the gift of His Holy Spirit (John 16:7-8). All this to say we must always be intentional about cultivating a mind and heart of gratitude! Tough to do in this "entitlement" age in which we live. But just keep in mind, the ONLY thing we are entitled to from the hand of God is his eternal judgment! Yet, in his grace he gives us Christ (John 3:16) and everything else we enjoy in life (1 Timothy 6:17). How about YOU? Have you ever received the free gift of eternal life in Christ? If you you have any questions about his, please click here.
2. As our church undergoes a renovation of our sanctuary, I am reminded of the pattern of spiritual growth in Christlikeness we find throughout the pages of the New Testament: Put off the old - Put on the new. In the case of our sanctuary we are "putting off" the old carpets, pews, paint, platform lighting, sound system, ect., etc., etc. In their place we are "putting on" new carpets, paint, chairs, platform lighting, sound system, etc., etc., etc. And so it must be in our walk with Christ. We are to "put off" the works of darkness and
"put on" the armor of light (Romans 13:12). We are to "put off" the old self and "put on" the new self (Ephesians 4:22-24) - which means to "put off" falsehood and "put on" truth (Ephesians 4:25); "put off" stealing for selfish gain and "put on" an honest day's labor which enables one to share with those in need (Ephesians 4:28); "put off" talk which is self-centered and "put on" talk that is others-centered (Ephesians 4:29); "put off" bitterness and malice and "put on" kindness and forgiveness (Ephesians 4:31-32). So ... given this emphasis of the New Testament, let me ask you --- what are YOU putting off ... and putting on in its place in order to become more like Jesus Christ?
3. In last Friday's post, I mentioned my wife was going for her post-op appointment with her orthopedic surgeon. During the appointment her staples were removed (and I did NOT leave the room NOR lose consciousness!). After this task was finished, the surgeon entered the room, showed us the x-rays and explained exactly what he had done in the surgery (which, since it was a revision, was more extensive than the original total knee replacement surgery). He was optimistic about Sharon's future use of her knee. So Sharon has been working hard in her physical therapy sessions and at home. However the swelling in her knee has hindered her somewhat (in the words of the physical therapist there's still a lot of anger in there!"). So please pray that the swelling (and pain) and all of this "anger" would begin to dissipate. Now ... on the plus side, her leg is straighter than it's been since September 4, 2015 (date of original knee replacement). Thanks for all of you who are supporting her through your prayers, notes, meals, etc.
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