Don’t Show What You Know

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It’s been said, “Knowledge humbles great men, astonishes the common man, and puffs up the little man.”  Knowledge is a wonderful gift, but how we use the knowledge we obtain reveals whether we have true wisdom or not.  People who become arrogant or “know-it-alls” with the amount of knowledge they have obtained are actually revealing how foolish they really are.  The Bible says, Wise people keep what they know to themselves, but fools can’t keep from showing how foolish they are. – Proverbs 12:23 NCV.  You see, you can have 12 Ph. D’s and still be a fool.  What we do with our knowledge determines if we are great or if we are little.  So remember knowledge combined with wisdom never has to be shown off.

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Speak With Your Feet

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A wise man once said, “People will follow your footsteps more readily than they will follow your advice.”  Have you ever thought about how meaningful and how empty words can be?  The same cluster of words given by one person can hold a completely different value if spoken by another person.  I believe this value in our words is very fragile.  We may be educated and have a great quantity of prime experience, but all that we communicate can be greatly hindered by the way we behave.  A lifetime of respect can be lost in just a few fleeting moments.  However, a lifestyle of hypocrisy will fool no one as well.  You can pretend to know all the right answers, but the way you live will speak volumes over what you say.  So Christians, let me challenge each of us to be consistent.  May what we say, match the way we live.  After all, sometimes our greatest witness will come without words.

Real Joy Has Come

nativity-scene-with-star-1426637  “Joy to the world, the Lord has come!”  Those timeless words from that great Christmas carol interject a truth and a tone that should be celebrated by each of us on Christmas.  For those who have found the hope and peace that comes with a relationship with Jesus Christ, there really is a reason for us to have joy.  We celebrate the wonderful fact that God sent His one and only Son to be our Savior.  We also celebrate, because He coming back again.  However, when Jesus comes again, it won’t be as a lowly baby in a stable.  He will be the coming as the true and rightful King.  So if you know Him, then be sure to celebrate.  But if you don’t know this Jesus, make this Christmas the best ever, by finding the wonderful freedom that only He can bring.  Merry Christmas!

No Need For Christmas Harping

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It’s been said, “It requires no musical talent to always be harping on something.”  In the always-connected world of social media, “harping” has become an everyday norm.  You would be hard-pressed to not bump into posts about personal rants, political bombshells, or even religious condemnations.  With just a few keystrokes anyone can vent their frustrations.  However, I would like to challenge each of us to back off the harping this Christmas and seek out peace and goodwill toward our fellow man.  Deep down isn’t this, what we are longing for anyway?  So fight the temptation to do some harping this holiday season and be proactive in spreading some true blessed cheer.

Don’t Be A Christmas Grouch

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I read a statement the other day that said, “A grouch adds much to the happiness of others by staying away from them.”  This time of year that reminds me of Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas.  The Grinch was an all-time grouch who hated everything about Christmas.  Now I’m not saying that we can become like the Grinch, but we would have to admit that we can become a grouch.  The business of the holiday season; shopping, parties, and making travel plans can truly drain our joy.  Many people become irritable and easily upset this time of year.  However, as followers of Christ, we must fight against this tendency.  We have to remember that Christmas is not about shopping, parties, traveling, spending time with family, or even about us.  We celebrate Christmas because of the wonderful gift of Jesus.  It is a beautiful reminder that Jesus has already come once and that He is coming again soon.  So let’s not give into the temptation to be a grouch or the Grinch; instead, let’s be intentional about spreading true Christian joy.

I Love Thanksgiving

turkey-day-candle-1523842As many of you who read this know, I love Thanksgiving.  It is probably my favorite holiday.  Christmas is enjoyable and the significance of Easter is always astounding, but there is something different about Thanksgiving.  No, it is not all the food, although it is always so good.  It is not the lazy afternoons watching football or playing games with family.  It is not the annual parades or the scavenger hunts for a good deal on Black Friday through the newspaper adds that makes Thanksgiving so great.  What I love about Thanksgiving is the pure recognition of gratitude to our great God.  As we look throughout the past year, we are reminded of how blessed we really are.  It is true that for many of us this has been a hard year, but even in the worst of circumstances, the Christians can still see the flood of blessings God has brought into his life.  So let’s join in with the psalmist this Thanksgiving: Let’s come to him with thanksgiving.  Let’s sing songs to him, because the Lord is the great God, the great King over all gods.” – Psalm 95:2-3 NCV.

You Can’t Handle It

on-your-own-1435956Someone wisely observed, “God will never let anything come your way that you and He can’t handle.”  What makes this a wise statement is the phrase “and He.”  Too many times people will claim that God won’t bring anything into your life that you can’t handle, but that simply isn’t true.  There are many things that happen to us in this life that we would not be able to overcome them, except for the grace of God.  Thus, I believe there are times that God allows some pretty big and tough situations to come our way because He knows we can’t handle it.  Those specific circumstances are designed to point us up back to Him.  Why would God do that?  Because many times we become independent in our own eyes and we forget that we desperately need God in everything we do. So yes, I do believe that you can handle anything that comes your way, but only if God is with you as you go through it.

Don’t Just Sit There

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It’s been said, “It does no good for a person to sit up and take notice if he just keeps on sitting.”  How many times have we seen a need and fail to act on it? We may even have had good intentions, but never got around to acting on them.  The Bible has something to say about this kind of behavior. “Because of laziness the roof caves in, and because of negligent hands the house leaks.” – Ecclesiastes 10:18 CSB.  Neglecting to act when we see a need can be costly.  If we were honest, many times we don’t act in the name of being “too busy,” yet when we examine what we are busy doing, it really wasn’t that important.  What a waste of a great opportunity.  So don’t allow laziness or business keep you from taking action when it is needed.  In the end, you will find that you actually took time to make a difference.

Keep Your Brow In Check

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Someone once said, “A highbrow is one who is educated beyond his intelligence.”  Too many people in the world have a very warped perception of themselves.  Yes, there are those who have a very poor opinion of who they are, but this is not healthy nor is it the social norm.  However, I believe there are far more people who think too highly of themselves then they should.  This is a trait that is unbecoming and it too is very unhealthy, especially for the Christian.  The Apostle Paul gave us a very helpful warning on this when he wrote, “Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.” – Romans 12:3b NLT.  You see no amount of education or social status matters in the eyes of Christ.  We are each equally guilty of sin and each Christian has come to faith only by the Grace of God.  So the next time we are tempted to exercise the “highbrow”, we need to remember we are not as great as we might think

Blessed People Are Happy People.

SONY DSCIt’s been said, “All we are guaranteed is the pursuit of happiness; you have to catch up with it yourself.” We all desire to be happy. Yet those things in life that seem to bring us delight are very fleeting.  Where do we pursue lasting happiness?  In the Bible, the same word translated “blessed” can also be translated “happy.”  I think that is a very telling fact because it tells me that blessed people are happy people. Therefore, to find lasting happiness, we must follow the lifestyle that brings to us God’s blessings.  The only way to achieve that is to turn to the principles of Scripture.  For instance, we are told, “Happy are those who don’t listen to the wicked, who don’t go where sinners go, who don’t do what evil people do. They love the Lord’s teachings, and they think about those teachings day and night.” – Psalm 1:1-2 NCV. So the secret to true happiness is not found in the pleasures of our physical life, but in the blessings that come from loving and living for the Lord.