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Side by Side
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April 9, 2016, 5:25 PM

Side by Side -- April 20116

Side by Side – Pastor John and Blanche Heidengren

How is your Lenten discipline going? How have you been doing on your New Year’s Resolution? Do you struggle to stay disciplined in your desire to grow and change and attack those bad habits and stick with new habits?

 

If you struggle, then you’re normal! Failure to keep resolutions we make is part of our fallen nature and reminds us how much we need God in our life and His power in our daily living. “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me” (Phil 4:13) is not just a Bible verse but a true and powerful promise!

 

So do you want to get back on track with your intention to exercise more, or read the Bible each day, or spend more time with family, or pray more for our needy world, or whatever area of your life you’d like to see more discipline? Here are a few suggestions:

 

1] Unrealistic goals – if we set the bar too high we may give up too soon.  2] Do a few things wellif we take on too many areas at once we may get overwhelmed and give up.  3] Get support – we were made for community not isolation – share your goals with someone else who can pray for you and help you stick with it.  4] Ask God for helpGod desires to see us become more like Jesus and become healthier in every part of our life – just invite Him into your desire to give up an old habit and start a new habit.

 

 

April 1st is often called April Fool’s Day.  What is a fool according to the Bible?  In Psalm 14:1, David writes, “The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.’”  So, in the old Test-ament, a fool is one who put his trust in everything but in the one who created him and saved him.  A fool is seen as being unwise and not discerning.  So Christians definitely do not want to be considered this kind of fool.

In the New Testament, Jesus tells about a “fool who built his house on the sand.”  The rains came and the house fell down and washed away because it wasn’t built on the Rock, that is on the truth that Jesus Christ is God’s Son and is the only One who has the Words of Life.  The man who build his house on the Rock, who made Christ his foundation and put his trust in Him for salvation, is the wise man.

Interestingly in 1 Corinthians 4:10, the Apostle Paul writes that he and the other apostles are "fools for Christ's sake." What do you think he means here? Well, Paul tells us in the following verses that he is willing to be a fool: as someone who is weak and held in disrepute, as someone who is hungry, thirsty, and homeless because of being persecuted for his faith in Christ. He goes on in verse 16, to urge his readers to imitate him, to be seen as a "fool for Christ." May we be this kind of "fool," able to say as Paul in verse, 12, "when reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we entreat; when seen as scum, we don't get offended." This is the kind of fool that by God's grace I want to be! How about you?

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