Susie Mc

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Verse and Message (Week of April 19-25, 2009) April 22, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — susiemc @ 2:47 am
Hammock 1
 
Psalm 119:67 (The Message)
Before I learned to answer You, I wandered all over the place, but now I am in step with your Word.
Bible 1
Monday morning I was reading the One Year Bible plan using my Max Lucado Devotional Bible and I ran across a side note message I had not read before. Lucado shared a message taken from Walking in the Light by Neil Anderson. It was a clear, simple, and applicable message to consider when we are facing tough decisions.
 Question Mark
When conflict occurs in our lives or there is an important decision to make, we must not jump to hasty conclusions. It’s significant to consider different perspectives in order to discern a wise choice. I think the following checklist is a wonderful tool to utilize when diagnosing an issue of concern in our lives. In light of the steps Anderson suggested, I anticipate a successful outcome when applying these principles. Anderson’s questions are highlighted in gold, and his commentary is highlighted in blue. After each point, I am including my own interjections noted with italicized text and asterisks. 
 
–From Neil Anderson’s Walking in the Light
 
Anderson noted ten questions we will want to ask ourselves when we are faced with a decision.  The initial five represent moral issues and godly wisdom that are normative for all times.  The next five are questions we need to ask ourselves when facing a change in direction. 
 
1.  Have you prayed about it? Prayer
 
The Lord’s Prayer begins with a petition for His will.  Prayer was never intended to be a fourth-down punting situation in which we ask God to bail us out of our rash decisions. It was intended to be a first-down huddle.  We aren’t supposed to ask God to bless our plans; we are supposed to ask God FOR His plans.
 
**Pastor Chris Hodges of Church of the Highlands said it best this past Sunday that most people pray as a last resort…he also used the expression –“fire escape prayers”.**
 
2.  Is it consistent with the Word of God? Bible 2
 
In our culture ignorance is no excuse since resources abound.  Every home should have at least a concordance, Bible dictionary, topical Bible, a good commentary, and a study Bible with notes.
 
**The Bible has the answer to every question. When we take the time to meditate on His Promises, the Word comes alive, and He reveals things to us. It is truly Life’s Instruction Book.**
 
3.  Can I do it and be a positive Christian witness? Cross
 
**Everyone is watching. Integrity is essential in defining solutions.**
 
4.  Will the Lord be glorified?…Am I seeking the glory of man or glory of God? Am I doing this to be noticed by man or am I seeking to please the Lord? Fish 1
 
**It’s not about me. When we please God, even our enemies will be at peace with us. Approval of man is short-lived, ie. the reward is brief. Approval by the Father is eternal.**
 
5.  Am I acting responsibly?
Bungy Jump
God doesn’t bail us out of our irresponsibility. He will let us suffer the consequences of our sins and irresponsible choices. But when we are faithful in little things, He will put us in charge of greater things.
 
**Be proactive instead of reactive. We must use good judgment in our words and actions. Carelessness will cost us.**
 
6.  Is it reasonable? Ponder
 
God expects us to think.  His guidance may transcend human reasoning, but it never excludes it. In most instances, God doesn’t bypass our mind during decisions…We are warned in Scripture not to put our mind in neutral. We are to think and practice what we know to be true. (Philippians 4:8-9)
 
**Use common sense. Refer to point #2 — Seek the Truth /The Word of God.**
 
7.  Does a realistic opportunity exist? Yes!
 
Closed doors are not meant to be knocked down. If you have a hopeless scheme let it go.  If it isn’t God’s timing, wait. If a realistic opportunity exists, and all the other factors are in agreement, then take the plunge.
 
**It’s important to discern this carefully. Sometimes God will use the supernatural to override the natural. Be open for any opportunities to allow Him to manifest His power. For, nothing is impossible with God, but it’s important to listen to Him. It’s crucial to make sure we don’t manipulate or control an outcome.**
 
8.  Are unbiased, spiritually sensitive associates in agreement?
Best Friends 2
 
Be careful not to consult only those who will agree with you. Give your advisors permission to ask hard questions.  Don’t be afraid of “no” answers. If it isn’t God’s will, don’t you want to know before you make the mistake of acting impulsively?
 
**Seek and maintain accountability.**
 
9.  Do I have a sanctified desire?
Please
Don’t think that being in the will of God must always be an unpleasant task. The joy of the Lord should be our strength…Is this a desire to satisfy the lust of the flesh, or a Spirit-filled desire to see God’s Kingdom established and people helped?
 
**Walk in the Spirit and break the power of the flesh in Jesus Name. When we are truly in alignment with His will, our desires will reflect His desires.**
 
10. Do I have a peace about it?
Dove 2
This is an inner peace. In the world we will have tribulation, but in Christ we have assurance of overcoming the world. Is the peace of God guarding your heart and mind?
 
**No matter how anxious or unsure I may be about making a decision…..the check-point is receiving that peace that transcends all understanding. A peace will be present when I am certain I have made the right decision.**
 
“There may be no trumpet sound or loud applause when we make the right decision, just a calm sense of resolution and peace.” (Gloria Gaither)
 
I feel our lives are made up of a tapestry of choices. We must strive to make choices that are pleasing to the Lord. The quality of our lives depends greatly on the quality of our choices.
 
Now to close, I want to leave you with a funny quote…(anonymous)
“Sometimes I make up my mind, other times my mind wanders, and every so often I lose track of it entirely.”
 
Friends, to keep our minds from wandering, we must fix our eyes on HIM…staying unswervedly focused….then, we can be confident that we are making decisions with the mind of Christ. That’s a good decision!
 
Disturbed with Decisions?
Decide to Delegate to the Deity…
One Way
His Direction is Delightful!
SUSIE MC
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