Dealing With Insecurity

I ran into the popular Christian writer Beth Moore one day at a bookstore…(actually it was her book display with her picture I ran into by accident).I felt so stupid and insecure as people watched me pick up the books…then I noticed the title of her book: “So Long Insecurity”… (by the way, it is an excellent book). The truth is, we all have those times when we feel so insecure about ourselves.
It is so important for us to place the ultimate source of our security into our relationship with with God. Hebrews 13:5 states that God will never leave us or forsake us. That is one of many Bible verses where God encourages us as we put our trust in Him. Here are some more to reflect on:

– “My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and salvation; He is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” Psalm 62: 1&2 (NIV)

-“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.” 2Peter 1:3 ( NIV)

-“You will guard him and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind [ both it’s inclination and character ] is stayed on You, because he commits himself to you, leans on You and hopes confidently in You.” Isaiah 26:3 ( Amplified Bible )

-“People who do what is right may have many problems, but the Lord will solve them all.” Psalm 34: 19 ( NLT)

-“Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6 ( NIV)

May God grant you that amazing grace today as you base your confidence in Him …


See you at the top of the mountain

“The mountains are calling…and I must go” – John Muir, Legendary Naturalist

“See you at the top of the mountain” is usually what my friends say to me when we go hiking. They know my pace is much slower. I have been so blessed with friends and family that share my love of the mountains. I have always enjoyed hiking and taking a break by getting away from it all with a quiet walk there. My aging earth suit ( body) has placed limits on me, but I refuse to let aches and pains to keep me from enjoying God’s beautiful creation. John Muir was a key influence in the formation of our national parks. He wrote in 1912, while camping in what later became Yosemite National Park: “Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to the body and soul.” That is still so true today.
Two of my favorite Bible verses always come to my mind when I visit the mountains.” Be still and know I am God” ( Psalm 46: 10) reminds me the importance of focusing on the majesty of God. Isaiah 30:15 states: ” In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.” It is in a quiet place, free from distractions that our strength can be renewed. This isn’t limited to the mountains. It could be by a lake, stream, ocean, or your own backyard watching the sunset. It also doesn’t always require a whole day or afternoon, sometimes just a few minutes will encourage you.
We are all on life’s journey. Please take time to enjoy time with the Creator of Heaven and Earth…


My Midnight Madness

Late one night, I heard a lot of noise in our garage and then I could smell the distinctive odor of a skunk. A skunk had somehow got in our garage and saw our black cat and evidently mistaken it for another skunk. As I jumped to my feet and headed out the door ( still half asleep),my wife handed me a spray can of deodorizer. I was now armed and ready! The next thing I know, I am chasing the skunk around our yard attempting to spray it with deodorizer! Then I became fully aware of my ridiculous course of action. The skunk left, the cat had escaped to a tree in our yard. It didn’t want anything to do with me either. I knocked on the door liked Fred Flintstone in the cartoons ” W-I-L-M-A (in my case L-I-N-D-A) …let me in!” … I couldn’t, because I now smelled like a skunk. I had to take an impromptu shower with the outside water hose first.
There are some experiences we encounter in life for which we are not prepared and feel very inadequate. Part of that isn’t necessarily our fault, we are just human and we live in an imperfect world with skunks, etc…How we respond is the key. I didn’t respond well that night, but it wasn’t due to lack of effort. Some times I think we are too hard on ourselves and others expecting everything and evybody to be perfect in our world all the time. I know one thing though for sure, I will not every go skunk hunting again…especially with a terrified cat and a can of deodorizer….


Staying Connected with your Family

“The choices you make determine the oneness you enjoy. Isolation is Satan’s chief strategy for destroying marriage. Your marriage is deeply influenced by the culture in which you live, and much of that influence does not encourage oneness . Most couples have not adequately prepared for the gravitational pull of difficult adjustments on the marriage relationship.” – Dennis Rainey

The world we live in is full of built in distractions that can pull us away from the relationships that matter the most to us. We have to be intentional about keeping our primary relationships healthy. We can stay connected by Organizing our schedule around priorities instead of pressures.
This done by seperating and distinquishing our OBLIGATIONS and our OPTIONS in our schedules. One of the best ways to do this process is to take some time to ask some questions to clarify your priorities:
1. What are our 5 most important priorities for our family?
2. What some things we are currently doing that are keeping us from living by our priorities?
3. What are some things we can eliminate or cut back in our schedule that isn’t that necessary?
4. Put your Priorities in your schedule and on your calendar.
It is important to decide on a mutual time to discuss weekly schedule, maybe Sunday afternoon or evening, just before the week begins to adapt and adjust to last minute changes.
It is also important to Continue to “Date” your mate. Be creative, don’t get into a boring routine.
Develop a list of things you enjoy doing together, things you can do locally that are simple and inexpensive. It will not happen on a regular basis unless you put your date on your calendar. It will keep other things crowd intonyour time together.This also prevents your spouse from feeling that they are unimportant to you and not just get the “leftovers” of your time.
We also stay connected by taking time to Listen to each other each day . It is best to do this without distractions if possible. During your talk, be sure to ask follow up questions. This way you will find out more about really going on in their world that day. This often only takes a few minutes but it is time well spent. As you talk and listen to each other , do so in a way that honors the God who blessed you with a family. Psalms 19:14 (CEV) describes in this way: ” Let the words and my thoughts be pleasing to you, Lord.”
In staying connected with your children, take time to ask them about their day. It is also good for you as a parent or grandparent, whenever it is possible to take time to volunteer with your kids activities at church, school, sports and other things.
Staying connected with your family is worth the effort…