December 17, 2017

Let Go of Control….then the Blessings We Will See (Guest Writer and Poet Entry)

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This intimate poem was given to me by someone very special. She has stood by to encourage my will to persist and self-confidence when down in midst of an island far from home. I believe this poem will touch your heart as it has touched mine.

For the Glory Given Up

I give up
Where’s my life going I have no lead
I give up
My heart is broken; its hope that I need
I give up
I am stuck in the middle of life’s road
I give up
Carrying many of life’s burdens like a heavy load
I give up
I fall on my knees in total surrender and submission
I give up
I give it all up to the One who makes my life’s final decision
I gave up
Now I can see life through a new light
I gave up
There is something great ahead that I am waiting to see with my sight
I gave up
I will praise God no matter the cost
I gave up
Without Him my life’s passion would be lost
I gave up
I thank him for all he has done and will do for me
I gave up
I know there are many more blessings He will soon let me see

-Lisa C., August 27, 2014

At the bottom of this poem given to me, the author wrote the reference for the following Scripture verse. One could say it inspired the poem above about our relationships with God.

Inspired by Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Perception – Reality versus Imaginary? Where do you live?

 

It has been a long time since I saw the movie, High Fidelity, but I do love this scene once recollected as it relates to the fantasy versus realism of relationships. Americans get caught up in their imaginations of what an ideal relationship quantifies often without the realization that the ideal factor is Christ. Through a focus on Christ, only then will harmony become realized. We have all fallen into the trap of love or like where we visualize in a false dream what role someone will fill as a certain something. These internal thoughts often mislead. A person must reciprocate feelings and often times they will fail to fill the shoes of the perfect vision you imagined in your mind. American Pop Culture falls into this trap because we tell ourselves that our lives are all about us. Things are easy. And everything will go exactly as I planned it or expected. There is nothing farther from the truth.

My advice is simple here: FIND someone who lives in reality and appreciates it in the simple things! Find someone who WANTS you!

Many times we pursue those who have a sense of entitlement, too good to extend a chance to the common man or woman. I do not know about you, but after thirty years of often pointless pursuits, I want to make someone feel wanted as they make me feel wanted. The real perception of another person comes true with a genuine sincerity towards all walks of life. With keen observation, each of us can feel a cynic, a narcissist, a self-righteous person, or someone who looks down upon those who actually live inside the fire of a pursuit.

Leave those types in their own imaginary worlds. Pursue reality in the perception that honest believers in Christ illustrate. Some in their own immature ways will at least for this time’s sake fail to extend the chance Jesus gives to all. Their own sense of self denies you any possibility of a chance at your dream or fantasy. And reality brings us back down to earth. Those who lack the ability to dream will not succumb to the belief of another person’s dream. In fact they will look down upon your dream caught up in the reality of whom and what they consider best only for themselves. A selfish insight blockades the potential for a servant’s insight for an eternal mindset.

Sometimes in the pursuit of reality we eventually discover what our imaginations dreamed of since the beginning of prayers and hopes as it pertains to love. The girl or guy you imagined in the crush or a high school or college cognitive photograph becomes the person you envisioned several years later down the road. You focused on the right things, and God rewarded the pursuit of integrity by bringing together both reality and fantasy in an ideal match made by heaven just for you.

Surround yourself with those who want you, and then Hunter Hayes’ lyrics here will ring true in his hit song “Wanted.” No imagine feeling like this!

 

Freedom in Christ – Experience It! Believe in the Infinite Power and Love of God! Do you believe?

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” Mathew 6:25-27 (NIV)

Now I know this is a verse most remain familiar with; however it assists me to believe that Christ in Me shuns and evaporates all worries away. If God takes care of the birds of the air, he will surely take care of us. Honestly in self-reflection, I ask both you and myself: Do we add value to our lives with worries in the nag it tears down on our minds?

I become exhausted when I think about such things. The Law of Attraction simply premises that negative thoughts lead to negative thoughts or positive thoughts lead to positive thoughts. That observation is both Biblical and true. As Tinker Bell pleads with Peter Pan to fly on the way to Never Never Land, “Think Happy Thoughts, Peter.” Think happy thoughts, indeed, we should. Perhaps that is the calling of us as Christians to spread the joy of Christ through positive thinking.

Do you ever feel weighed down by worries, concerns, problems, challenges, troubles, or adversity? Recently I have felt more anxiety than usual. I believe decisions are coming where I will change lives just as much as others’ lives will change my own. Constant change is necessary for those who seek growth and constant improvement for every area of their life, but it can also become nerve-racking as well.

I also feel the negativity of others bringing us down sometimes as well. No matter what you do or say, some always combat you in defensiveness or think of something bad to say no matter what the situation, maybe even just in regular conversation. I find this observation especially interesting when you try to grow closer to someone, only for them to turn you away with a protective survival mode like attitude. I understand protecting your heart when another hurts you, but when you hurt those who care about you because of another person’s past actions, you distance yourself from what could potentially turn into a very good relationship, friendship, or possibly an eternal life partner. I know we all have encountered people of this nature.

I believe the simple truth is that we find freedom only through Christ as believers. It often comes to down to simply kneeing before Christ bedside with the request for freedom. Believe when you ask that God relieve of your worries that he will. Really all we have to do is let go and believe the request that we make. Christ will care for you! Christ will have you! Christ will love you! I listed four principles that have changed my life and will continue to do so as I focus on a year of Christ, change, growth, and movement forward for dream sake.

1.) Focus on today and only today.
2.) Believe that good things will happen again.
3.) Surround yourself with positive, faith-building relationships.
4.) Realize God’s Infinite Power and Love.

The same chapter in Mathew mentioned at the beginning of this blog entry ends on this note:

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Mathew 6:34 (NIV)

When we focus on today and the responsibilities of each hour now, we live in the present where future moments live and stay in the future without blocking the work of God we are destined to achieve. The Enemy will say, tempt, or do anything to keep us off track from achieving our purpose-filled, driven commission. If you believe and realize God’s Infinite Power and Love, you and I together will become unstoppable in any endeavor we attempt to pursue and successfully surmount. Bring it! We are to go down and get down with God’s business to save souls, orphans, widows, and anyone that needs service in His Name. Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him FOREVER!

Someone told me recently, “God is pleased with you right now. You do not need to publish books, plant churches, and start nonprofits for God to notice your goodness. For you live in Him, and because he is good, so are you!” Now that simple reminder of truth speaks to my heart as it perhaps does you. Remember to think positively about such thoughts in forever-inclined-eternal-mindsets to realize that God is the most powerful advocate who works for your behalf. He loves us all more than we can humanly understand or imagine!

Let’s end on an amazing passage from The Message Bible. Read, refresh, and become inspired!

“It wasn’t so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn’t know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the same boat. It’s a wonder God didn’t lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah.” Ephesians 2:1-6 (The Message)

A Pair of Star Crossed Lovers – True Love Celebrates! To Joe Friday and Matteye Monday…

I believe these lyrics by Rascal Flatts seem all too familiar for this couple. In fact, Joe Friday might capably play the cover song version better than the Rascal Flatts version.

Bless the Broken Road
Rascal Flatts

I set out on a narrow way many years ago
Hoping I would find true love along the broken road
But I got lost a time or two
Wiped my brow and kept pushing through
I couldn’t see how every sign pointed straight to you

[Chorus]

Every long lost dream led me to where you are
Others who broke my heart they were like Northern stars
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

I think about the years I spent just passing through
I’d like to have the time I lost and give it back to you
But you just smile and take my hand
You’ve been there you understand
It’s all part of a grander plan that is coming true

[Chorus]

Now I’m just rolling home
Into my lover’s arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you.

I heard this past weekend through a text message that a pair of star crossed lovers aligned in their mission to serve God in a promise of an engagement, my dear friends and relatives, Joe Friday and Matteye Monday. I hope you endorse my creative code names here, but you know who you are.

This pursuit of a young man perhaps remains only comparable to that of a new version of the modern plague of Romeo and Juliet where family, distance, and the attempts of a feeble few meant to separate what in my heart I always knew to remain true. Manic and protective of that which I loved, I once warned through belligerent text messages that those ignorant opposed back off from a wounded heart. I hated to see someone I loved hurt so much by close family members claim to know what’s best in a world of love when separation through example demonstrated anything otherwise with poor choices. Our actions speak louder than words.

The feud behind the scenes of this performance between the Montague’s and Capulet’s makes my stomach well up with knots to think of deviousness and pressure in claims to do what is best for my offspring. Intended well or not, the hypocrisy of an elder sometimes becomes blinded by truth when faced with questions in the mirror. Intentions lose their purity in the pursuit of selfishness over Christ-like wishes for the well-being of those served.

As I looked through my playlists on the ITunes program, I found no love song mixes. To portray my own brutal honesty, I do not much like to think of love because I believe that millennials prove to be more selfish than servant-like. In the newfound culture of the “me-complex,” many lose and misinterpret the true meaning of love. However few like Joe Friday and Matteye Monday in the youthful pursuit of true feelings stand to face the worst of circumstances only to strengthen ties and bring out the best in each other. True love is not a fairy tale. Their story shows that true love still exists, but proven here it is not for the light-hearted. I admire those who pursue with conviction this ideal of true love when I gave up on such a notion a long time ago. With my life, the other persons never included serving another in the acknowledgement of Biblical leadership. Selfishness will always trump any chance of something special occurring, like Joe and Matteye possess. In a world of evil, they understand service as it relates truly to Christ. I both admire their wisdom and continue forward with feelings of my own envy for the love they share hoping to find that myself. I believe Friday and Monday learned to be content without before with each other. Their testimony inspires my scars to heal in the pursuit of true love like we see in my favorite saga of Romeo and Juliet. Our scars and mistakes do after all make us who we are. I think Joe and Matteye while forced through so much unnecessary wrong-doing understand this more than most. Their example of love is what I continue to seek and what in my wildest dreams I hope to become and be like.

To Joe Friday and Mattye Monday, I raise my glass full of prayers to wish you the very best that dreams unite and God’s Kingdom radically celebrates as together you accomplish life’s journeys in heavenly driven purposes. Even when others failed to support you, on bended knee, I prayed that God pierced each of your hearts for true love regardless of what everyone else thought. I always raised my voice up to God and against others when misspoken. I am the one pillar you can lean against any time you need, and with God’s new inspired ambitions, I cannot and will not ever fail you in my own passion for the fruits of the Holy Spirit. I hope through the common passion of eternal music our paths cross to one day touch thousands through ministry, a calling only few understand in the masses. Until then for the moment, I celebrate with you the union of star crossed lovers that until this day no other understood. You withstood all the adversity and trials to stand side by side in ways our family cannot begin to fathom with the wisdom of love for Jesus. I admire you. I commend you. I wish to be like you! And with my sincerest of desires, congratulations from the bottom of my heart! May God bless you forever!

I believe this scene from my favorite movie, the 1996 modern version of Romeo and Juliet, seems appropriate.

Young and Talented – “Too Fly” featuring Jacque. -Do not settle! An interesting date…I’M TOO FLY….for her!

Young and Talented (YT for short, also known as the future Dr. Mannheimer) remains an artist and a friend I continue to respect with his beliefs, morals, and creative works as an up-and-coming talent. YT rises from the plains of Auburn University (undergraduate) into the Seminole country of Florida State University (graduate studies). His music video relates to a recent dramatic date I lived through.

Recently I tried going on a date with a girl I met in Tuscaloosa while attending a Blues Festival at the new amphitheater. Upon first interactions, Taylor stood as a short cute blonde girl with some feisty tendencies and social inclinations to speak with anyone and everyone she knew which seemed like every party and individual out on the town that night. She seemed tipsy with an inclination to take part in some wild drinking activities and to “smoke while drinking socially,” whatever that means.  

My first hint and sign that asking her out was not necessarily a great idea included the observation she raised a five year old child as a single mom. Please understand I do not believe there is anything wrong with dating single moms; however, while praying about a future match and wife, I have never felt called to date a single mom myself. I also want to marry someone with a college education and a nonsmoker.  While many might think I am wrong for such parameters on my dating life in which girl I pursue, that is how I feel about the matter. These are the belief systems and standards I will adhere to and not budge from.  

I planned to drive down to Tuscaloosa, approximately an hour from Birmingham, to take Taylor to a local Italian restaurant and to see The Dark Night Rises. I thought as a brief introduction date a traditional outing appeased nothing too serious just to have a fun and good time. Upon the start of dinner, Taylor immediately ordered two glasses of white wine, something tipsy with her small petite figure, representative of an Olympic one hundred pound gymnast. She forgot to mention that wine gives her migraine headaches. If you know of this fact, then why would you drink wine in the first place? That question still remains a mystery to me. Taylor also insisted on smoking a cigarette outside the restaurant before commuting to the movie and then again before the movie even started (two cigarettes) which then made us late to the movie. Halfway through the movie Taylor’s migraine acclimated to a level so bad that she insisted we leave. We did not even make it halfway through the movie (wasted costs on tickets and drink with no possible refund). When I returned Taylor to her car, she forgot her cash and credit cards at her father’s house??? She asked me to borrow $20.00 to buy gas for her empty tank as I pumped that amount into her car. At this point, my expenses included dinner, an incomplete movie showing, gas to Tuscaloosa, and gas for a girl I was not even dating seriously (about a total of at least $120.00). I thought “mama moocher” in my mind, another standard I try to avoid and leave behind.     

Taylor also seemed nervous during the date when I asked her simple questions to know her. I opened the door for her and paid her way because I could afford to. Those are just basic courtesies for the way Mama Cartee raised me, a southern gentleman of some sort. She mentioned, “I usually date jerks. I am not accustomed to dating a nice Christian guy” (actual word-for-word quote here). I knew originally I should just leave the date alone. I settled for one date below that Too Fly standard I before committed too. YT’s song and video reminds us to never settle for a subpar relational match.

I gladly provided Taylor with an evening she may rarely experience, a nice meal and gas on me; however it did not set the better of first impressions with me. She asked if she could see me again. I kind of raised my eyebrow, wondering what planet she lived on, and then slowly said, “We’ll see.” I think she knew what I meant, as I quickly jettisoned out of Roll Tide Land, never hoping to date a girl from the University of Alabama ever again. I could not help but laugh to myself after experiencing what culminated to the worst date I may have ever had up to this point in my life.         

Now you might ask how and why this narrative related to the YT rap song, Too Fly? The theme of the song remains simple for me: Do not settle for less than God would HAVE FOR YOU! Whether male or female, you just might be TOO FLY for whoever you meet. In fact I think dangerous grounds include missionary dating, hoping and believing someone will change to your specifications after you start seeing them. I think all of us fall into such a trap at least once or twice in our lives before we learn not to partake in such lost cause ventures. Perhaps the girl in this video figuratively chased a jerk in missionary dating, thinking he would change eventually. I never understand as a guy or girl why we date those who never define our personal preferences. It has nothing to do with being picky but rather setting a bar or standard for what brings you joy in relationship. If nothing mirrors your relationship with God in pursuit of another, you waste your own time in addition to that of the other person. God has so much more for you in store! Please believe!

I will not settle for less again. Perhaps God wanted to refresh my memory to focus on those who focus on him, something Taylor’s lifestyle never suggested, like “I am saved, but I do not really live it out.” For someone of my own religious conviction, this match would never work! Next time before tempted for a reckless date and direction, I will watch and listen to the following wise words of Young and Talented. His lyrics go a little something like this:

This ain’t a game I am playing.
I really want to be with you.
Don’t know how much
I have to say just
so I can convince you.
Look at your life
and picture it with me
because the way I see him treating you
is sickin’ your seed.
You deserve the very best,
nothing less than respected,
but all I ever hear about
is how you get neglected.
He doesn’t put it any time.
Don’t think that you owe him.
He won’t know what he’s got
until it’s gone.
So you should show him
because he is messing with your mind.
I know he’s got you stressing.
He’s trying to bring you down,
but I ain’t going to let him.
He sees you a possession.
I see you as a blessing.
Girl, you got them pretty wings.
I just want to see you spread them
because you’re too fly.  
You’re too fly.  
You’re too fly.
You’re too fly.
You’re too fly.
You’re too fly.
You’re too fly….for him.

I think I might be too fly! Maybe you also are too fly for whoever you date! I am not going to let anyone neglect me as you should also, and I am certainly not going to fall short of what God has in store. Please also remember the following promise of God when you question or settle for less than what God’s Word promises you.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11(NIV)

I am convinced my path will cross in ministry at some point in time with both YT and Bane Productions with an eternal product that will save souls and inspire youth in amazing ways.

WATCH THE MUSIC VIDEO HERE ON THE BLOG. “YOU ARE TOO FLY FOR HIM (or HER)!”

Follow @SuperYSuperFly on Twitter here.

View videos at the YTRaps1 YouTube channel.

The Conclusion of the Greatest Spiritual Series Ever! – The Growth Track

THE CONCLUSION!

This series applies to my life as much as it also applies to yours. I believe some of these steps will speak to you if you read the Scriptures and contemplate the main points. I seek growth in my life and witness as I focus more on eternal matters, doors seem to open, or at least I get leads for promising future ventures with a focus on God in relationship as my number one priority.

I pray that my readers become touched by my words and the hours I spend actually constructing words of inspiration as I struggle with my own journey for personal advancement.

I often rush through moments pressing on forward to the next goal in mind. I believe while chasing growth in opportunity this series also reminds me to slow down and appreciate where I am. I am in a good stable situation seeking doors to open. I believe that remains a much better situation than those who do without, those desperate for any way to provide. It is a matter of a paradigm shift to remain grateful for what you possess and have.

Pursue growth as I do, but also do not forget to enjoy the moment and what we have now. Our present moment often leads as a platform to the next endeavor closer to the dream we seek to accomplish. With all things considered, reach out, connect, and grow. After growth with roots planted, discover your passion with a definite focus on God. Pursue the dream and chase forward towards your eternal direction. Then I promise with obedience to God’s calling for your life, success is evident and inevitable. Sometimes it just takes time and a patience to wait on God’s timing.

The GROWTH Track Series – GO and DO! (Step Seven)

GO and DO!

If unfamiliar with my model here, click here to understand the introductory blog entry that explains my novel and original concepts that bring and promote growth through this track into your life by different means through the plan provided below.

I. Reach Out
II. Connect
III. Grow
IV. Discover Your Passion with a FOCUS on God!
V. Pursue the Dream

VI. Choose and Pursue Your Eternal Direction
VII. GO and DO!

Once you connect, grow, and discover your passions in the body of Christ at an individual and/or group level, I really think you will find your vision to pursue your life purpose. Of course, with time that certainly may change, but once found yourself in this capacity, then GO and DO whatever God calls you to! Realize the friends and family in the relationships you formed, reached out to, connected with, and grew into, will in good consciousness support you in your life’s journey when you go and do.

FIRST Relevant Scriptures for these sub-points

1.)    “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20 (NIV)

2.)    “Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it—because it does. Give yourselves to the gifts God gives you. Most of all, try to proclaim his truth. If you praise him in the private language of tongues, God understands you but no one else does, for you are sharing intimacies just between you and him. But when you proclaim his truth in everyday speech, you’re letting others in on the truth so that they can grow and be strong and experience his presence with you.” 1 Corinthians 14:3 (MSG)

A.) The Great Commission calls us to ALL nations.

Scripture in the New Testament calls us to reach out to every corner so that God’s Name becomes glorified. We are meant to travel in country and out-of-country to every corner where the Gospel has not yet reached indigenous peoples. Your passions in dreams rendered will determine if this is your dream to be had.

B.) God watches over us when we choose and pursue our calling through the Great Commission.

The Scriptures say and show we remain guarded by God’s protectors when we follow the calling portrayed before us in the Great Commission to do and go wherever we are led. Our guardian angels step into action so to speak. I believe if one has never traveled overseas for mission purposes that you should do so to open doors and become more like-minded in Christ. Our minds tend to open when we have seen beyond our front doors. The world suffers, and your life will be changed forever when you see it in person.

SECOND Relevant Scripture for these sub-points “You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others.” 2 Timothy 2:2 (NLT)

A.) The Good News perpetually spreads forward each and every time shared.

When we go and do, salvation continues with a pay it forward effect. Each person who receives the Gospel is likely to spread it to the next person. God’s Salvation is just that good and promising that we want to continue sharing it with others onward from the very moment we become saved.

THIRD Relevant Scripture for these sub-points This mystery has been kept in the dark for a long time, but now it’s out in the open. God wanted everyone, not just Jews, to know this rich and glorious secret inside and out, regardless of their background, regardless of their religious
standing. The mystery in a nutshell is just this: Christ is in you, so therefore you can look forward to sharing in God’s glory. It’s that simple.
That is the substance of our Message. We preach Christ, warning people not to add to the Message. We teach in a spirit of profound common sense so that we can bring each person to maturity. To be mature is to be basic. Christ! No more, no less. That’s what I’m working so hard at day after day, year after year, doing my best with the energy God so generously gives me.” Colossians 1:28-30 (MSG)

A.) God through Christ lives in every single one of us, and through Christ in us, we accomplish God-Size, Purpose-Driven dreams.

It is through Christ in us that we attain the Bigger Dreams through remembering the Bigger Picture. Christ lives in us as part of the Body, and our perfection through His Body in perfection gives us the means and power to achieve Greatness for Kingdom purposes. It is Christ in me that gives us the power to rise above and achieve.

The following are five more verses that I find relevant to discover your passions with a focus on personal growth and your own personal relationship with God. Make note and take to heart God’s Word here.

“Yes, Lord, walking inthe way of your laws, we wait for you; your name and renown are the desire of our hearts.” Isaiah 26:8 (NIV)

“Those who are wise will shine as bright as the sky, and those who lead many to righteousness will shine like the stars forever.” Daniel 12:3 (NLT) 

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 (NLT)

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a  lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your
Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)

“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

Luke 4:18-19 (NKJV)

I believe we are meant to follow the steps of the growth track to go and do whatever God calls us to. I also believe we are most fulfilled when we follow God’s calling for our lives. It takes an extra grit and mile worth of work to achieve dreams. I am learning that as I grow older I must almost work twice as hard to separate myself apart from the rest of the pack. Personal success for me involves growth and progression in the pursuit of my dreams. This growth came to me this year as I turned thirty working each level of Scripture to pursue where I know I need to be.

These three videos creatively illustrate concepts of going and doing your mission through The Great Commission. The videos ask relevant questions and are extremely short. I think you will find them relevant to struggles we face every day as we seek to shine through with Christ-likeness in commonplace environments.

The GROWTH Track Series – PURSUE THE DREAM! (Step Five)

Pursue the Dream

If unfamiliar with my model here, click here to understand the introductory blog entry that explains my novel and original concepts that bring and promote growth through this track into your life by different means through the plan provided below.

I. Reach Out
II. Connect
III. Grow
IV. Discover Your Passion with a FOCUS on God!
V. Pursue the Dream
VI. Choose and Pursue Your Eternal Direction
VII. GO and DO!

FIRST Relevant Scripture for these sub-points -“But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded.” 2 Chronicles 15:7 (NIV)

A.)  Pursue the dream with ALL YOUR MIGHT!

If we stay the course to never give up, God’s Word promises us that our work will be rewarded. We cannot give into complacency which becomes so easy with discouragement faced in daily survival mode. Would a dream be worth fulfilling if easy?……probably not if you think about it. The things we work the hardest for tend to be the things that are most fulfilling. Give it all you got! God will give you the extra inch when exhausted to reach the finish line.

SECOND Relevant Scripture for these sub-points “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV)

A.)  Pursue the dream with all your prayers!

Pursue God intentionally with your prayers. He will show up to answer the requests presented before him. Remain on your knees in gratefulness, and the dream will come. If you desire God, you will desire to speak time with Him in prayer. Pretty simple here….He loved you to call your name. So we shall therefore call on his as well.

THIRD Relevant Scripture for these sub-points“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?” Matthew 7:7-9 (NKJV)

Keep Asking, Seeking, Knocking!

 

A.)  If you never ask, you may never receive.

I think sometimes we know the desires of our heart, but we never ask God. This includes myself especially. And then we wonder why such prayers are never answered. We must ask in order to receive God’s Blessings. He delights in hearing from us. So why not talk to him with any requests that may be on our hearts?

FOURTH Relevant Scriptures for these sub-points

“Joseph had a dream….”We were binding sheaves of grain out in the field when suddenly my sheaf rose and stood upright, while your sheaves gathered around mine and bowed down to it.”… Then he had another dream, and he told it to his brothers. “Listen,” he said, “I had another dream, and this time the sun and moon and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” Genesis 37:5-9 (NIV)

…and the story continues…

“‘Here comes that dreamer!’ they said to each other.” Genesis 37:19 (NIV)

…and the story continues…

“We told him our dreams, and he interpreted them for us, giving each man the interpretation of his dream. And things turned out exactly as he interpreted them to us.” Genesis 41:12-13 (NIV)

A.)  BE LIKE JOSEPH!

Joseph is one of my favorite Bible characters! His stories of tribulation to fulfill the dreams of God’s provisions on his life inspire me! I believe he is a true example of patience for dreams to become fulfilled. He was sold into slavery by his own brothers and family and then told to be dead. Potter’s wife then lied so he was thrown into jail among an onslaught of many other escalated and harsh consequences for troubles that were not his own. Eventually he rose to become second on the planet only to Pharaoh in the worst drought the area witnessed in the history of the region. It is Biblical giants like Joseph we must remember to emulate when our dreams seem stagnant. It was twenty years before God granted the original dreams sent to him. Now that seems like forever to me right now especially since I hope God answers a dream prayer request as soon as possible.

In a previous entry, I wrote a strong blog entry about Joseph that touches on more Biblical principles with his life as related to this growth sub point. Check it out!

FIFTH Relevant Scripture for these sub-points

he said, “Listen to my words:

“When there is a prophet among you,
I, the Lord, reveal myself to them in visions,
I speak to them in dreams.”

Numbers 12:6 (NIV)

A.)  You are a son or daughter of The Most High God while will reveal your dreams and visions to you.

We really are prophets of the Most High God, and God informs us here in this Scripture that he will deliver our dreams to us through signs revealed in personal and profound ways. While it is hard to wait, sometimes it is all we can do to pursue – wait for God to give us that green light. God sometimes requires us to wait to learn the lessons of today to prepare us for tomorrow.

SIXTH Relevant Scripture for these sub-points– “At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you.” Solomon answered… ‘Give your servant a discerning heart to govern your people and to distinguish between right and wrong. For who is able to govern this great people of yours?’ The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, “Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be. Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for—both riches and honor—so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings. And if you walk in my ways and obey my statutes and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life.” Then Solomon awoke—and he realized it had been a dream.” 1 Kings 3:5-15 (NIV)

A.)  Ask for the right dreams, and ALL shall be given to you.

Solomon asked for discernment through wisdom, an unselfish spiritual gift and blessing to serve his people. When you ask God for an unselfish dream in order to really serve others, I believe with pure and genuine motives in heart you receive all the more. Your original intention like Solomon also intended to ask for further wisdom or spiritual gifts to make an eternal Kingdom-Building difference. That is the heart of a matter that God yearns for and loves. He rewards us when we seek him pure in heart. What it comes down to is this: when you serve God for the sake of His Name, your dreams and more come forth into reality, fulfilling your innermost joys.

AND THAT IS A POINT WORTH ENDING ON – the pursuit and choice of receiving God’s joy for our lives!

The following are two more verses that I find relevant to discover your passions with a focus on personal growth and your own personal relationship with God. Make note and take to heart God’s Word here.

“Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it.” Proverbs 4:23(NIV)

“Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, ‘So shall your offspring be.’ ” Romans 4:18 (NIV)

I would consider Jon Acuff, the author of Quitter, a modern day expert on the logical pursuit of a dream come true achievement. He advocates keeping your day job until that job becomes a dream job. Acuff may in fact be the reason I did not recently quit a commitment I made. Our cubicle day job serves as a platform to reach for our next dream job. You are capable of pursuing a dream with the pursuit of Christ. Acuff works for Dave Ramsey, and I think his book will change your life much like the growth track here on the blog. I would recommend Quitter with my most sincere regards. If you like his advice in the videos below, you will love his book! Dream big, and eventually together we can quit the day job to leap into our dream job!

The GROWTH Track Series – GROW! (Step Three)

If unfamiliar with my model here, click here to understand the introductory blog entry that explains my novel and original concepts that bring growth into your life by different means.

GROW!

I. Reach Out
II. Connect
III. Grow
IV. Discover Your Passion with a FOCUS on God!
V. Pursue the Dream
VI. Choose and Pursue Your Eternal Direction
VII. GO and DO!

In my life I particularly struggle when I never feel growth especially in regards to a career. I am one who easily becomes bored when I am not challenged or when I sit and do the same thing over and over again where machines could easily manage such tasks. It becomes especially challenging when we seek to attain growth when where we spend most of our time we never are. I am never content when I sit still in stagnancy staring at the ceiling with my teeth gritted wondering where my growth has gone. This step still perplexes me because some of us push so hard to grow in the right ways, where even the overachievers like me do not make time to sit back and watch the growth as we miss it. Others around us see our growth spurts with a perspective looking from outside inward. Sometimes we miss it when we look at ourselves in the mirror. While I love to write about this step in the growth track more so than any other, it might also be the most difficult for me to write about because I constantly feel stuck sometimes in a place that I do not want to be with a God who listens but does not necessarily hear my requests for new growth opportunities in the workplace. At least that is how I feel at times.

FIRST Relevant Scripture for these sub-points

Blessed is the one
who does not walk in step with the wicked
or stand in the way that sinners take
or sit in the company of mockers,
but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,
and who meditates on his law day and night.
That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither—
whatever they do prospers.

Psalm 1:1-3 (NIV)

A.)  The Word of God is the only constant source of growth.

Sometimes it becomes so simple like I described before when we seem so frustrated by the monotony of a routine that all we need to do is return to God’s Word. I especially fall victim to this that I become so consumed that I do not plan on spending time with God because I claim to be so busy with other things. Or sometimes even in immaturity if I am not happy, then I do not want to spend time with God. That almost sounds like a fair weather football fan. If your team is not winning, you do not desire to watch the football game or even go to it. I am sure this approach makes God feel real good.

B.)  Even when growth is not visible in our life goals, it can become visible in the radiance of the Spirit after spending time in God’s Word. “….like a tree planted by streams of water.”

Again I fall into busy where spending devoted time with God in the Word becomes something I overlook. While growth may not be evident in our own lives, it can become evident in our own personal renewal time with God. The radiance of God shines in our lives when we spend time with Him. We transform into a tree planted in streams where the chaos around us no longer affects us personally. In fact we hold up against the rushing waters better than ever expected because our roots sink into the right places where our foundation remains set.

SECOND Relevant Scripture for these sub-points – “ But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.” 2 Peter 3:18 (NIV)

 A.)  We experience the most growth when we live in the Grace of God.

I know that I am guilty of trying to move forward in growth often on my accord without giving all to God. When we remain in the Living Grace of God, we receive His Blessings naturally. When living in His Grace, the blessings flow. It becomes exhausting trying to live on our own accord, but when we truly realize His Grace, growth is inevitable! 

THIRD Relevant Scripture for these sub-points – “Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” Ephesians 4:15-16 (ESV)

A.) When we grow together in relationship, we grow together to become better. 

When we love one another and grow towards each other in relationship together forward, growth reaches exponential potential. We reach for the highest heights when others below hold our feet up for us. Together each person serves as a different part of the body, and each with our own distinct gifts grow when we work together with common passions.

B.)  We grow when we lean into Christ as our Lord and Savior.

I often want to figure things out on my own because that makes things so much easier. When we come to the feet of Christ with every urge, every temptation, every problem, every praise, every tear, and everything in life, we lean into Christ as head of the body, and our growth forms into deep roots from our approach to come to God for everything we need relationally!

FOURTH Relevant Scripture for these sub-points

“Through wisdom a house is built,
And by understanding it is established;
By knowledge the rooms are filled
With all precious and pleasant riches.

A wise man is strong,
Yes, a man of knowledge increases strength;
For by wise counsel you will wage your own war,
And in a multitude of counselors there is safety.”

Proverbs 24:3-6 (NKJV)

A.)  Growth is most likely when surrounded by wise counsel.

Age brings forth wisdom, and when you surround yourself with the right people, growth reaches its maximum potential with those you counsel with. When you go to the right places for advice, you will typically receive a good word on how best to proceed with the correct actions in place. Knowing the right men of honor will increase one’s own aptitude to live and become more with future endeavors.

FIFTH Relevant Scripture for these sub-points – “Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.” 1 Peter 2:1-3 (NIV)

A.)  Growth occurs when we crave God through our salvation.

When you realize that God is so good with an eternal perspective, you yearn for Him like a hungry baby for milk. Growth comes with abundant blessings because what we taste in relationship to Christ is truly good in life. We realize what is important in Christ, and that becomes our focus.

The following are two more verses that I find relevant to personal growth with others and your own personal relationship with God. Make note and take to heart God’s Word here.

“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.” Colossians 1:9-12 (NIV)

“And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” Colossians 3:17 (NKJV)

I believe that Francis Chan points out a pivotal truth to personal growth alone with God when we study the Word when others do not tell us what God’s Word says but rather we discover it for ourselves. We are alone with God’s Word, and we grow in these times of our personal devotion just with God one on one. Chan self-titles this sermon “THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON I COULD EVER TEACH!” If you take his words to heart, Chan will change your heart like The Growth Track can as well. Click. Watch. Pray.

12 – In My Soul Where He Stays

One more to complete thirteen poems others claim I am crazy.
Absolutely right I will never settle in my refusal to be lazy.
So much negativity floats in the word of those who negate.
Now is the time to live purposefully for it’s never too late.
A one stop light town girl picks up a guitar to play
Wondering whether dreams will fall in the steps we lay.
It’s amazing how successful we become when our nerves surrender.
As a writer with words of meaning in my passions I become her defender.
Falling into likeness with a sudden knight who rises in his armor,
I rise to protect those so jerks will no longer be able to harm her.
A gent from twilight sessions could not relax to let go
Because it is no longer my own growth in the pursuit that I sow.
It is a force in relationship with Jesus who brings two together
So nothing in the past or future can break two in any endeavor.
Two become one in the pledge of a life spent worth the words of an exchange.
I might not finish the goal in the lives that together two could change.
I believe that with a common vision for eternity two far better reach than one
As a pursuit to complete the journey both reach the highest in worship for the Son.
I cannot, will not, and refuse to settle for what I know what God has in store.
That belief in faith impels me forward to a friendship so about you I can learn more.
We settle in the stupidity that God never shows or reveals himself to those who follow.
That hopelessness burns a hole in the soul like rotten wood in the silence so hollow.
I cannot imagine my life forever without the one in the hopes of tomorrow.
I try my best so that I fulfill the joys reaching beyond my own self-pity and sorrow.
Even with failure the end will present a glorious celebration of all days
Because the Lord delivered at the surrender of my hands in my soul where He stays.

JLC iii, 6/23/12