It’s wonderful to have nice things, but let me give you this word of warning: do not identify who you are with what you own. If you try to value who you are through what you own, you will either overestimate yourself or underestimate yourself.
When you achieve enough wealth to buy a Mercedes Benz and then say to yourself, "I’m finally worth a Mercedes Benz!" you have cheapened your worth. You are worth more than any car of any make or model.
What would it FEEL like to be completely out of debt?
No credit cards, no car payments, no student loans, no medical debt, no personal loans to family or friends, not even a mortgage payment, nothing.
What would that feel like?
Years ago, I was an "eye-for-an-eye, tooth-for-a-tooth," kind of girl. I longed for payback for the people who hurt my heart.
I felt God asking me to move forward so that I could heal, but I remained stuck.
Nine year-old bat boy Kaiser Carlile died after being struck in the head by a bat in what was a freak accident. He was doing something he loved. His dad said the players were heroes to him and he looked up to them, and even though he was wearing a helmet, he was accidently struck and killed. What a tragedy.
It may sound flippant, but accidents happen all the time. In the Bible we read about Jonathon’s son who, when he was five, was being hurried away by his nurse when he fell and became crippled. Or when a young man was listening to the apostle Paul preach and he fell out of a window. The fact that we are often surprised when we hear a story like Kaiser’s is a mystery since we seem to encounter so many accidents along life’s journey.
Have you ever been overwhelmed by something that seems trivial to others? Perspective is a funny thing.
For example, did you know that my thumb is bigger than you are?
You don’t have to be so strong. I think of the story in the Gospels when a man who couldn’t walk was lowered through the roof by his friends and placed at the feet of Jesus. We all get to the point sometimes when we can’t take another step. There’s no shame in that, and you don’t have to pretend to be strong.
Let those who love you carry you. Tell them what you need. Ask for help. See that as an act of courage—not of weakness. Because that’s what it is.
Hoover Dam is impressive! It holds millions of gallons of water that serve the drinking water and agricultural needs of people in the area and was designed to generate electricity. The release of the water is a huge blessing that generates life! Hoover Dam is a great picture of the blessings of God to His people. God has blessed His people with an amazing amount of resources! Most serve the daily needs of His people. But He also designed a portion to be released to generate the funds needed to accomplish His Kingdom work.
"Why can’t you get it together?"
"If you would just try harder..."
Have you heard any of these? Maybe you've even said them to yourself.
Siloam Springs is the kind of hometown where you are likely to meet a friend at the grocery store and you can still expect your neighbor to loan you something. There are advantages to living in a small town. But there are also disadvantages. Take my neighbor Don Haxel. Upon meeting Don you will immediately like him. He has been a fixture in this town for many years. There are many families who have been blessed by Don and his wife Brenda. So why the disadvantage? Simple, he has perhaps the greenest thumb of anyone I know. His gardens and flowers are absolutely beautiful, but apart from taking out a small loan for flowers and plants and hiring someone to plant them and ensure they grow. I cannot compete. So I get to admire his house and wish I could get my stuff to look half as nice as his.
We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. That among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men. Deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
For those of us fortunate enough to live in the United States of America, it is easy to take for granted the unparalleled liberty we've experienced for over 200 years.