About these ads

Posts tagged ‘authority’

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART TWO)

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART TWO)         

Teaching Kids Respect-My-Grand Son Tony Byars (Photo by Pastor Davis)

Remember, the process for training up a child to learn respect begins with you, “the parent.”  Set the example for your child.  You as the Parent have a duty to God and to your children to instruct them in the reasons for being respectful, study (Proverbs 1:84:16:20Ephesians 6:1-4). These verses should enlighten your mind on what God wants us to know about the proper role we play in raising our children to have and show respect for authority.

These principles equip your children for success in life and prepare them to assume their place in the kingdom. You as a Parent do more harm to your children by not instructing and re-enforcing these truths (Deuteronomy 6:7-9).

Your child mimics what you do — if your child sees you yelling, cursing, interrupting or being sarcastic, your child believes this behavior is natural, explains Dr. Robyn Silverman, child and teen development expert. If you want your child to respect you, teach him or her how to do so.  If you want your child to have respected you and other authority figures you must give respect to your child. This means you support your child and his or her feelings. Acknowledge your child’s feelings, and refrain from saying anything negative that can hurt your child.  Respect is a two-way street. Just because you are an authoritative figure doesn’t mean you shouldn’t respect your child. Your child is a person too.

Let us be mindful that when God commands us to respect certain individuals it is assumed they are respectable. One of the difficult lessons to learn in life is that we are sometimes disappointed by those whom we have come to respect. Parents sin (Colossians 3:21); elders digress (1 Timothy 5:19-20); governments become corrupt (Psalms 9:17); men become wicked (2 Timothy 3:13). In times like these, we remember that the honor we give others, even the undeserving, is a reflection of the esteem with which we hold Christ (Ephesians 6:5-7).

English: Young saint Timothy with his mother

English: Young saint Timothy with his mother (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sometimes the young demand respect for themselves. They are certainly entitled to the same honor which others receive (I Peter 2:17). However, the same assumptions hold for them as well, those honored are honorable and the respected are respectable. Paul admonished Timothy to let no man despise his youth (I Timothy 4:12). In order to accomplish that task Paul urged him to be an example in all areas of life. If we want to be respected we must learn it and earn it.

Now let us look at one of the most common and misunderstood ways that a child shows lack of respect for adults, it is by interrupting adult conversations.  For me as a child, this was truly a no, no. However, this is often done when a child continuously pulls on their Mother’s arm while saying, “Mommie, Mommie, Mommie, Mommie, Mommie,” repeatedly until Mommie gives the child her undivided attention. The child has demanded priority over the adult with whom her mother was speaking, and in essence has said, “Me first! I’m more important than you are!” The tragedy is that most parents are oblivious to this very prevalent way of showing disrespect to adults, and they will generally acknowledge the child immediately, even doing so when their adult friend is in mid-sentence.

A child who has something to say to parents who are engaged in conversation should be trained to come and stand quietly beside his or her parent, making sure that his or her parent sees them. At an appropriate time after the other party has completed a thought, the parent can say, “Excuse me one moment,” and turn and acknowledge the child, who has been waiting patiently. After answering the child’s question, the adult conversation can be resumed. The child’s concern has been addressed, but at the parents discretion, not the child’s.

When adults are engaged in conversation in the presence of children (for instance, at dinner), the children should not dominate or dictate the direction of the conversation. The way another generation expressed this thought was, “Children should be seen and not heard.” It is not that children should not speak at all, but that they should not think that they have equal status around the dinner table with the adults. Sitting quietly and learning to listen while at the dinner table is a key ingredient to a Childs ability to learn respect and proper communication with other adult figures.  Many children, if not taught respect by their parents, will actually dominate the conversation, making it impossible for the parents and guests to have an adult discussion.

Children should be taught to sit quietly and respond enthusiastically when spoken to, or when an adult shows an interest in them or their activities. They should be spirited responders, and not initiators, when adults are present.

We must always know our place and keep in mind, that we are the adults in the room, and we are either going to be the teacher are we are going to be taught by our children.  If we are Godly parents, we know that we must always remain in the will of God and be obedient to the word of God, knowing that everything we do our children is watching and learning from us.  A key ingredient to just how our children learn respect is through observation.  They learn how to honor their parents by observing how their parents honor one another (Ephesians 5:2829), and by seeing how their parents treat their grandparents (1 Timothy 5:4Matthew 15:6). They learn how to honor government by observing how their parents respect the law (I Peter 2:13-15Luke 20:25I Timothy 2:1-2). They learn how to honor their employers by observing how their parents honor theirs (Ephesians 4:286:6-72 Thessalonians 3:10). And, they learn to honor God by observing their parents do the same (Matthew 6:33).

Know this one truth, and that is God will always have the last word on how respect and honor works in our daily lives.  In (Ephesians 6:2-4 AMP) the word says this, “Honor (esteem and value as precious) your father and your mother–this is the first commandment with a promise–That all may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.

Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.  This honor is due because parents have sacrificed so much for their children.  They are the guides, the providers and protectors of their offspring. Their love and sacrifice should command our respect; this is why God says, “It is right.”

The aged are worthy of our respect (Leviticus 19:32Proverbs 20:29). However, it is again assumed that they command that respect by their character (Proverbs 16:31;Job 32:9). The aged have attained wisdom through their experiences and spirituality (Job 12:12). Their lives have been a blessing to their families and communities because of their accomplishments. Their posterity is indebted to them for their accomplishments. We do stand on the shoulders of giants.

Now in conclusion let me leave you with this final perspective, why has this become such a problem in the 21st century? I submit to you that this should not come as a surprise to you because we have a generation of kids raising kids.  With our economy in the shape that it is in and both parents having to leave home for work just to make ends meet, we have turn over the raising of our children to the T.V. and video games.  Drugs and Alcoholic has invaded our communities and the drug addictions and early death rate of so many of our youth are causing grandparents and great grand parents to become parents to their grand children at a time when they are ill equipped to do so.  The children have already grown up with a bad attitude of disrespect for the adults and the authority figures that now must care for them.

While it is unfortunate, it is nevertheless often necessary to apply correction. A failure to do this when it is called for encourages further disrespect (Ecclesiastes 8:11). For this reason then, God has allowed for government to punish evildoers (Romans 13:24), the church to correct the unrepentant (Titus 1:132 Thessalonians 3:6), and parents to discipline their children (Proverbs 13:24).

Let me assure you, this is not the final word on this subject by no means; I will speak more on this subject again soon.  It is a subject that has many view points. In my next message I will have others to share their views on this subject until we all get a complete picture on what and how to deal effective with this matter.  If you have a point of view that you would like to share, please email it to me and I will consider it in my next lesson on this subject.  I leave you with my peace, that you may enjoy the benefits of God’s grace and mercy.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.

About these ads

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART ONE)

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART ONE)

TEACHING OUR CHILDREN (SHANIA A. BYARS) PHOTO BY PASTOR DAVIS

What happens when kids grow up disrespecting authority figures? We see the prison system all over the country is over crowded with young children who grew up not knowing what it meant to obey authority.  The grave yards are quickly becoming a place where young children are been sent because people have become so fed up with children robbing, beating, threaten and even murdering their parents and other adults that the public is fighting back and shooting and killing these children when their own lives are threaten.  Here in my city of Detroit, just two weeks ago a sixteen year old boy attempted a carjack, the man he attempted to carjack was armed and after ordering the kid to get out of his car and the kid refused, the man shot and killed the young boy.  This is a tragedy and failure on the parent’s part to teach their son that they must respect authority and not be out robbing, stealing and killing other people.  Prosecutors around the country are putting kids on trial from the age of 10 and up as adults.

Respect for authority begins in the home, if your children are not taught to show respect for their parents are other adults in their home and community, they will most certainly not show respect for the government, such as police, teachers, the courts, all other authority figures and the churchRespect for authority comes through the realization that it is set up to help us and not to control us.  It must begin when the children are young and can understand that they are loved and what is being taught to them is that we love them and how to love others by the love and respect that they are shown.

This does not mean that children obey all adults; they only have to obey those to whom their parents have delegated that authority, such as teachers, coaches, etc. However, there should be a deference given to adults by children because of their age and experience.

Respecting authority is something our children should do without any hesitations; however, before they can do this, they have to be taught the meaning of respect and how and why it has to be a key ingredient in all of our lives. All authority is from God (Romans 13:1). Learning to respect an authority, no matter who the particular authority figure is, is respecting God, and is foundational for our children’s future.

As a young person growing up in my community, we all were taught to refer to all adults by saying “Mr. and Mrs., yes Sir and yes Maim,” this was a sign of respect, and immediately set the adult apart from the child’s friends.  Not understanding the principle involved, many adults will say, “Call me (their first name).” A parent can then explain that using “Mr.” and “Mrs.” and the last name is being done for the child’s sake, to help him to learn to show respect for adults.

Since a baby has no concept of respect, and feels only its own needs when it is first born, I believe that the only successful way to teach a child what respect is is to earn the respect of the child as they slowly grow into a thinking human being.

The way this is done is first of all by attending to the child’s natural needs, such as to be fed and nurtured. As the child grows, his needs change. He has increasingly sophisticated psychological needs. He begins to express his own views, his own preferences, and he has an increasing need for freedom, autonomy and independence. This is when the adults in his life can treat him with increasing respect and thereby earn his respect in return.

Let us understand a very important thing as to respect, and that is age affects children’s respect. Both Children and adults deserve respect at every age. Here is a guideline based on age:

Babies – They are too young to show respect but when you meet their needs, they learn to trust you. This helps as they get older because respect for authority is based on trust.

Toddlers – They are old enough to learn to say “please” and “thank you”.

Preschoolers – This is a good time to teach rules and consequences.

Elementary age – They show the most respect for adults who make fair rules. It helps to let them have a say in the rules that they are expected to follow.

Middle and High Schoolers – Allow them to show independence, such as clothing or hairstyles, but make sure you have guidelines. They will appreciate the respect you are showing them. We respect you and the incredible job that you have, being a parent.

As parents, it’s our responsibility to equip our children to function well in the world, and if we

Picture of me showing love for my Grand Children

neglect that responsibility our children could easily wind up in prison are the graves.  No parent wants this for their child, therefore it is important that we address the needs of our children when they are born and stay with it no matter how difficult the task may become into their adult lives.

One of the most important things you can teach your child is respect. Keep in mind that respect is not the same as obedience. Children might obey because they are afraid. If they respect you, they will obey because they know you want what’s best for them, and the best way to teach respect is to show respect. When a child experiences respect, they know what it feels like and begin to understand how important it is. Keep in mind the saying “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

Respect is an attitude. Being respectful helps a child succeed in life. If children don’t have respect for peers, authority, or themselves, it’s almost impossible for them to succeed. A respectful child takes care of belongings and responsibilities, and a respectful child gets along with peers.  Schools teach children about respect, but parents have the most influence on how respectful children become. Until children show respect at home, it’s unlikely they will show it anywhere else.  Although you may not realize it, your child must also respect herself or himself.
This concludes part one of a two part message.  Please read and study this as the first session of many to come on this message.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART TWO)

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART TWO)         

Remember, the process for training up a child to learn respect begins with you, “the parent.”  Set the example for your child.  You as the Parent have a duty to God and to your children to instruct them in the reasons for being respectful, study (Proverbs 1:84:16:20Ephesians 6:1-4). These verses should enlighten your mind on what God wants us to know about the proper role we play in raising our children to have and show respect for authority.

These principles equip your children for success in life and prepare them to assume their place in the kingdom. You as a Parent do more harm to your children by not instructing and re-enforcing these truths (Deuteronomy 6:7-9).

Your child mimics what you do — if your child sees you yelling, cursing, interrupting or being sarcastic, your child believes this behavior is natural, explains Dr. Robyn Silverman, child and teen development expert. If you want your child to respect you, teach him or her how to do so.  If you want your child to have respected you and other authority figures you must give respect to your child. This means you support your child and his or her feelings. Acknowledge your child’s feelings, and refrain from saying anything negative that can hurt your child.  Respect is a two-way street. Just because you are an authoritative figure doesn’t mean you shouldn’t respect your child. Your child is a person too.

Let us be mindful that when God commands us to respect certain individuals it is assumed they are respectable. One of the difficult lessons to learn in life is that we are sometimes disappointed by those whom we have come to respect. Parents sin (Colossians 3:21); elders digress (1 Timothy 5:19-20); governments become corrupt (Psalms 9:17); men become wicked (2 Timothy 3:13). In times like these, we remember that the honor we give others, even the undeserving, is a reflection of the esteem with which we hold Christ (Ephesians 6:5-7).

Sometimes the young demand respect for themselves. They are certainly entitled to the same honor which others receive (I Peter 2:17). However, the same assumptions hold for them as well, those honored are honorable and the respected are respectable. Paul admonished Timothy to let no man despise his youth (I Timothy 4:12). In order to accomplish that task Paul urged him to be an example in all areas of life. If we want to be respected we must learn it and earn it.

Now let us look at one of the most common and misunderstood ways that a child shows lack of respect for adults, it is by interrupting adult conversations.  For me as a child, this was truly a no, no. However, this is often done when a child continuously pulls on their Mother’s arm while saying, “Mommie, Mommie, Mommie, Mommie, Mommie,” repeatedly until Mommie gives the child her undivided attention. The child has demanded priority over the adult with whom her mother was speaking, and in essence has said, “Me first! I’m more important than you are!” The tragedy is that most parents are oblivious to this very prevalent way of showing disrespect to adults, and they will generally acknowledge the child immediately, even doing so when their adult friend is in mid-sentence.

A child who has something to say to parents who are engaged in conversation should be trained to come and stand quietly beside his or her parent, making sure that his or her parent sees them. At an appropriate time after the other party has completed a thought, the parent can say, “Excuse me one moment,” and turn and acknowledge the child, who has been waiting patiently. After answering the child’s question, the adult conversation can be resumed. The child’s concern has been addressed, but at the parents discretion, not the child’s.

When adults are engaged in conversation in the presence of children (for instance, at dinner), the children should not dominate or dictate the direction of the conversation. The way another generation expressed this thought was, “Children should be seen and not heard.” It is not that children should not speak at all, but that they should not think that they have equal status around the dinner table with the adults. Sitting quietly and learning to listen while at the dinner table is a key ingredient to a Childs ability to learn respect and proper communication with other adult figures.  Many children, if not taught respect by their parents, will actually dominate the conversation, making it impossible for the parents and guests to have an adult discussion.

Children should be taught to sit quietly and respond enthusiastically when spoken to, or when an adult shows an interest in them or their activities. They should be spirited responders, and not initiators, when adults are present.

We must always know our place and keep in mind, that we are the adults in the room, and we are either going to be the teacher are we are going to be taught by our children.  If we are Godly parents, we know that we must always remain in the will of God and be obedient to the word of God, knowing that everything we do our children is watching and learning from us.  A key ingredient to just how our children learn respect is through observation.  They learn how to honor their parents by observing how their parents honor one another (Ephesians 5:2829), and by seeing how their parents treat their grandparents (1 Timothy 5:4Matthew 15:6). They learn how to honor government by observing how their parents respect the law (I Peter 2:13-15Luke 20:25I Timothy 2:1-2). They learn how to honor their employers by observing how their parents honor theirs (Ephesians 4:286:6-72 Thessalonians 3:10). And, they learn to honor God by observing their parents do the same (Matthew 6:33).

Know this one truth, and that is God will always have the last word on how respect and honor works in our daily lives.  In (Ephesians 6:2-4 AMP) the word says this, “Honor (esteem and value as precious) your father and your mother–this is the first commandment with a promise–That all may be well with you and that you may live long on the earth.

Fathers, do not irritate and provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to resentment], but rear them [tenderly] in the training and discipline and the counsel and admonition of the Lord.  This honor is due because parents have sacrificed so much for their children.  They are the guides, the providers and protectors of their offspring. Their love and sacrifice should command our respect; this is why God says, “It is right.”

The aged are worthy of our respect (Leviticus 19:32Proverbs 20:29). However, it is again assumed that they command that respect by their character (Proverbs 16:31;Job 32:9). The aged have attained wisdom through their experiences and spirituality (Job 12:12). Their lives have been a blessing to their families and communities because of their accomplishments. Their posterity is indebted to them for their accomplishments. We do stand on the shoulders of giants.

Now in conclusion let me leave you with this final perspective, why has this become such a problem in the 21st century? I submit to you that this should not come as a surprise to you because we have a generation of kids raising kids.  With our economy in the shape that it is in and both parents having to leave home for work just to make ends meet, we have turn over the raising of our children to the T.V. and video games.  Drugs and Alcoholic has invaded our communities and the drug addictions and early death rate of so many of our youth are causing grandparents and great grand parents to become parents to their grand children at a time when they are ill equipped to do so.  The children have already grown up with a bad attitude of disrespect for the adults and the authority figures that now must care for them.

While it is unfortunate, it is nevertheless often necessary to apply correction. A failure to do this when it is called for encourages further disrespect (Ecclesiastes 8:11). For this reason then, God has allowed for government to punish evildoers (Romans 13:24), the church to correct the unrepentant (Titus 1:132 Thessalonians 3:6), and parents to discipline their children (Proverbs 13:24).

Let me assure you, this is not the final word on this subject by no means; I will speak more on this subject again soon.  It is a subject that has many view points. In my next message I will have others to share their views on this subject until we all get a complete picture on what and how to deal effective with this matter.  If you have a point of view that you would like to share, please email it to me and I will consider it in my next lesson on this subject.  I leave you with my peace, that you may enjoy the benefits of God’s grace and mercy.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.

 

 

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART ONE)

TEACHING KIDS TO RESPECT AUTHORITY (PART ONE)

What happens when kids grow up disrespecting authority figures? We see the prison system all over the country is over crowded with young children who grew up not knowing what it meant to obey authority.  The grave yards are quickly becoming a place where young children are been sent because people have become so fed up with children robbing, beating, threaten and even murdering their parents and other adults that the public is fighting back and shooting and killing these children when their own lives are threaten.  Here in my city of Detroit, just two weeks ago a sixteen year old boy attempted a carjack, the man he attempted to carjack was armed and after ordering the kid to get out of his car and the kid refused, the man shot and killed the young boy.  This is a tragedy and failure on the parent’s part to teach their son that they must respect authority and not be out robbing, stealing and killing other people.  Prosecutors around the country are putting kids on trial from the age of 10 and up as adults.

Respect for authority begins in the home, if your children are not taught to show respect for their parents are other adults in their home and community, they will most certainly not show respect for the government, such as police, teachers, the courts, all other authority figures and the churchRespect for authority comes through the realization that it is set up to help us and not to control us.  It must begin when the children are young and can understand that they are loved and what is being taught to them is that we love them and how to love others by the love and respect that they are shown.

This does not mean that children obey all adults; they only have to obey those to whom their parents have delegated that authority, such as teachers, coaches, etc. However, there should be a deference given to adults by children because of their age and experience.

Respecting authority is something our children should do without any hesitations; however, before they can do this, they have to be taught the meaning of respect and how and why it has to be a key ingredient in all of our lives. All authority is from God (Romans 13:1). Learning to respect an authority, no matter who the particular authority figure is, is respecting God, and is foundational for our children’s future.

As a young person growing up in my community, we all were taught to refer to all adults by saying “Mr. and Mrs., yes Sir and yes Maim,” this was a sign of respect, and immediately set the adult apart from the child’s friends.  Not understanding the principle involved, many adults will say, “Call me (their first name).” A parent can then explain that using “Mr.” and “Mrs.” and the last name is being done for the child’s sake, to help him to learn to show respect for adults.

Since a baby has no concept of respect, and feels only its own needs when it is first born, I believe that the only successful way to teach a child what respect is is to earn the respect of the child as they slowly grow into a thinking human being.

The way this is done is first of all by attending to the child’s natural needs, such as to be fed and nurtured. As the child grows, his needs change. He has increasingly sophisticated psychological needs. He begins to express his own views, his own preferences, and he has an increasing need for freedom, autonomy and independence. This is when the adults in his life can treat him with increasing respect and thereby earn his respect in return.

Let us understand a very important thing as to respect, and that is age affects children’s respect. Both Children and adults deserve respect at every age. Here is a guideline based on age:

Babies – They are too young to show respect but when you meet their needs, they learn to trust you. This helps as they get older because respect for authority is based on trust.

Toddlers – They are old enough to learn to say “please” and “thank you”.

Preschoolers – This is a good time to teach rules and consequences.

Elementary age – They show the most respect for adults who make fair rules. It helps to let them have a say in the rules that they are expected to follow.

Middle and High Schoolers – Allow them to show independence, such as clothing or hairstyles, but make sure you have guidelines. They will appreciate the respect you are showing them. We respect you and the incredible job that you have, being a parent.

As parents, it’s our responsibility to equip our children to function well in the world, and if we neglect that responsibility our children could easily wind up in prison are the graves.  No parent wants this for their child, therefore it is important that we address the needs of our children when they are born and stay with it no matter how difficult the task may become into their adult lives.

One of the most important things you can teach your child is respect. Keep in mind that respect is not the same as obedience. Children might obey because they are afraid. If they respect you, they will obey because they know you want what’s best for them, and the best way to teach respect is to show respect. When a child experiences respect, they know what it feels like and begin to understand how important it is. Keep in mind the saying “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

Respect is an attitude. Being respectful helps a child succeed in life. If children don’t have respect for peers, authority, or themselves, it’s almost impossible for them to succeed. A respectful child takes care of belongings and responsibilities, and a respectful child gets along with peers.  Schools teach children about respect, but parents have the most influence on how respectful children become. Until children show respect at home, it’s unlikely they will show it anywhere else.  Although you may not realize it, your child must also respect herself or himself.
This concludes part one of a two part message.  Please read and study this as the first session of many to come on this message.  I remain your brother in Christ, Pastor Davis/Master Teacher.

ARE YOU PREPARED TO FIGHT AND WIN? (PART 3)

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS THE TEACHER OF ALL TRUTH (JOHN 16:13) AMP, AND HE IS YOUR HOLY GHOST TRAINER.  ARE YOU READY TO BEGIN YOUR TRAINING EXERCISE?

The Bible tells us in John 8:32 know the truth and the truth will set us free. Freedom is what we all seek. Freedom to determine our own destiny, and in doing so, we know that we are assured by the word of God that by holding onto His unchanging hands our victory in this race is a fore gone conclusion.

Nevertheless, here is the one thing you must know concerning the truth.  Listen to what the word says, 13But when He, the Spirit of Truth (the Truth-giving Spirit) comes, He will guide you into all the Truth (the whole, full Truth). For He will not speak His own message [on His own authority]; but He will tell whatever He hears [from the Father; He will give the message that has been given to Him], and He will announce and declare to you the things that are to come [that will happen in the future]. (John 16:13) AMP).

Jesus said the Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”  The word guide means, “To show the way in unknown territory.” God uses the Holy Spirit to grow and edify you, stretch and mature you, to build you up, and then take you to the next
level of spiritual maturity.  It is a level that you have never, seen before it is unknown territory.  However, know without a doubt, that you are promised, a personal trainer who is the Spirit of truth.  He will come alongside you to guide you in the new place.

He knows what you need and He will never fail you.  A strange dynamic occurs between a trainer and trainee.  The trainee is always complaining to the trainer about what he cannot do.  The truth of the matter is that a good trainer knows more about the trainee than the trainee does.  He knows where he is weak and where he is strong.  He knows how quickly his muscles will respond to certain kinds of training.  He knows when he is tired or just being lazy.  A really good trainer can look at you and tell you if you’ve been eating the right foods or if you’ve gotten enough sleep the night before.  The trainer knows the trainee’s past history.  He puts the trainee on an exercise program tailored for his needs to achieve the desired goal.  Always during exercise, the trainer is right there, next to the trainee.  He never goes on a coffee break.
He never turns his back.

He is always ready to the next level.  Whenever the trainer puts the trainee into weight-lighting position, the trainer makes sure there is enough weight on the bar to help the trainee advance to the next level.  When the trainee gets in weight-lifting position, the trainer is right there, whispering into his ear, “You said you wanted to get stronger.  You said you wanted to grow.  You said you wanted to build endurance and stamina.  Now, lift that weight.”

The Holy Spirit will encourage you by reminding you of the prize of God’s high calling.  He will remind you of times past when you thought you could not carry the weight of your problems, but He was right there showing you how.  Sometimes the trainee tries to negotiate with the trainer.  He will say his load is too heavy or that the trainer requires him to lift too much weight.  “Would you please, sir, take off some of this weight?”  However, the trainer knows what his pupil needs.  He tries to help the trainee get stronger.  He knows the trainee only gets stronger by lifting something heavy.  Likewise, the Holy Spirit knows you cannot exercise yourself unto godliness by doing what you are used to doing, what is easy to do.  He knows you have to go through pain sometimes.  He knows you have to be taken to new plateaus of faith, new levels of understanding in the Word, greater depths in meditation, and further intimacy in prayer.

He stands ready to help.  He will never turn his back on you, because He is also your spotter.  If
He sees you straining, and sweating, and about to throw in the towel, He takes notice.  A good trainer always stands close enough to place one finger on the load you are trying to lift.  If it looks like the bar is about to fall, a good trainer will hold it for a spell to give you some rest.  He is there to make sure you do not collapse under too much weight.  After all, He has a promise to keep:”God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able” (1Cor. 10:13).  He will never let the bar fall on you and injure you.

Do you know what it is like to struggle with a heavy load only to have God step in to let you rest?  God puts His Holy Ghost finger underneath your load and lifts it for you.  In the midst of your struggle, you find yourself able to lift your burden.  Before you know it, you hear something in your ear.  Before you know it, you are getting stronger.  You are able to lift up your problems, discouragement, and heartache.  The power of the Holy Ghost helps you to run
on in Jesus name.  If you keep working out with your Holy Ghost trainer, you will find after awhile that your burden feels a little bit lighter.  It is not really lighter; it is just you have gotten bigger spiritual muscles.  You have the joy of the Lord, which is your strength.  You have heaven in your view.

He gets results.  I go to the gym regularly.  I have noticed that people who leave the gym
have a walk about them.  They have a little more glide in their stride.  They may not even have lost any weight, but they know that as long as they keep going to the gym, one day the pounds will come off.  If you are regularly exercising spiritually, you know your troubles will come off.
You know your trails will one day be outdated.  You know discouragement will not be with you
always.  You might as well start thanking your Trainer right now, even if you have not lost a pound.  You know, if you are exercising spiritually, that He is the best Trainer there is.  Moreover, if you look around at some of His other clients, you know that those who stick
with Him see miraculous results.

TO BE CONTINUED IN PART 4.

 

IT IS TIME TO STOP WORRYING AND LEARN TO TRUST GOD

Therefore I tell you, stop being perpetually uneasy (anxious and worried) about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink; or about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life greater [in quality] than food, and the body [far above and more excellent] than clothing?  (Matthew 6:25) AMP

We are living in a time when our minds are filled with external authority.  We submit to the news of doom and gloom, always forgetting that there is a higher authority that is in control and if we can learn how to lean and depend on Him, we will never have anything to worry about.  But we know that in the world of reality, that people who lead others or carry organizational responsibility find more than enough reasons to worry—deadlines, financial pressures, market instability and other pressures (you fill in your own blanks here) make stomachs churn and account for many a sleepless night.  But Jesus cautions us against worrying about anything—even the food we eat or the clothes we wear.  In this passage, Jesus gives his disciples (and us) six reasons for trusting in God rather than worrying.

First, the same God who gives us the greater gift of life will certainly supply the lesser gifts of food and clothing (v 25). The command don’t worry about everyday life does not imply complete lack of concern, nor does it call people to be unwilling to work and supply their own needs.  Food, drink, and clothes are less important than the life and body that they supply.  Because God sustains our lives and gives us our bodies, we can trust him to provide the food and clothing he knows we need.  Worry immobilizes us, but trust in God moves us to action.  We work for our money to supply food and clothing, but we must always remember that these ultimately come from God’s hands.  When the need arises, we need not worry, for we know that our God will supply.

Second, the God who cares for the birds will care for his people.  After all, humans are of much greater value than any bird (v. 26).  The birds need food, and the heavenly Father knows it.  They are dependent upon God’s daily provision because they cannot plant or harvest or put food in barns.  They work, they hunt for it and then bring it back to their families, but they don’t worry.  If God cares for the birds, makes sure that the natural order of his creation supplies food for them, how much more will he care for a hungry human being?  People are far more valuable to him than the birds.  Jesus was teaching total dependence upon God as opposed to humanity’s self-sufficiency.  All that we have ultimately comes from God’s hand.  Jesus was not prohibiting his followers from sowing, reaping, and gathering food (that is, working for it); but he was prohibiting worrying about having enough food.

Third, worry expends energy pointlessly—it doesn’t change the reality of the situation a single bit (v.27).  Many of us would do well to ask ourselves this question every morning:  “Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?”  Daily we face new challenges, concerns, problems, and choices.  Will we worry, or will we pray?  Will worrying be of any help whatsoever?  Worry may damage our health, cause the object of our worry to consume our thoughts, disrupt our productivity, negatively affect the way we treat others, and reduce our ability to trust in God.  Worry may in reality, take time away from our span of life rather than adding to it.  It accomplishes nothing.

Fourth, worry ignores God’s demonstrated faithfulness in our lives (vv. 28-30.  The same God who so wonderfully clothes the flowers of the field is responsible to care for them.  Every blossoming flower is a reminder of God’s faithfulness to us.  Sitting on the grassy hillside, Jesus may have gestured to the lilies, probably referring generally to the bountiful flowers in Israel, and pointed out that those lovely flowers don’t have to work or make their clothing.  As in 6:26, Jesus was not condoning laziness while waiting for God to supply.  Instead, he wanted his disciples to place their lives and needs in God’s hands, refusing to worry over basic needs.  To worry about your clothes shows little faith in God’s ability to supply.  God “clothes” the flowers and grass of the field that are here today and gone tomorrow.  If his creation clothes the earth with beauty and color so rich that even King Solomon in all his glory could not match it, then he will surely care for you.

Fifth, we are God’s children (vv. 31-33).  God will never treat us as orphans who need to fend for themselves.  Because God provides food and clothing not only for birds and flowers but even more for his precious human creation, don’t worry.  Do not spend energy fretting over having enough food or drink or clothing.  Worry has no place in the lives of Jesus disciples because their heavenly Father already knows all their needs.

Jesus followers must settle the question of priorities and make the Kingdom of God their primary concern.  To do that, we must consistently honor and represent the Kingdom.  Then the way we deal with family, friends, work, leisure, etc., will all be transformed.  What is most important to you?  People, objects, goals, money, pleasure, and other desires all compete for priority.  Any of these can quickly bump God out of first place if you don’t actively choose to give him first place in every area of life.  Strangely enough, when you get your priorities right, Jesus promised that God will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him.  When Jesus followers seek his Kingdom first, God takes care of their needs.

Sixth, when we worry about tomorrow we miss out on today (v. 34).  Any problem we face can and will be handled, with God’s help, one day at a time.  Because God cares for his people’s needs, Jesus says, “Don’t worry about tomorrow.”  In an appeal to common sense, Jesus explained that what we worry about happening tomorrow may not happen, so we will have wasted time and energy worrying.  We need to reserve that energy because today’s trouble is enough for today.  We only add to today’s burdens when we worry about the future.  No anxieties about tomorrow will change the outcome, for tomorrow will bring its own worries.  The burdens of today are enough, so let God take care of them.  We must trust God for today without worrying about tomorrow.

As leaders who want to influence our generation for Christ, we need to lead in a way that allows others to see our faith in God.  One way we can do that is by depending on God in the face of our daily pressures.  The next time you are under pressure, instead of worrying, pray for the grace you need to depend on God, who is perfectly and eternally worthy of your trust.  Remember that those you lead will see how you respond to such pressures and will follow your actions.

 

LEARNING TO LIVE IN THE TRUTH

As we begin our study of the epistle of 2 John 1:4-6, we are given to understand that John had only met some of the believers in the church and was glad to find them living in the truth.  John was probably speaking of those he met at some place other than the local church itself.  His joy at meeting them and then discovering that they were living in the truth prompted him to write this epistle.  In identifying only “some” of the children, he was not necessarily excluding the others.  Rather, he was speaking only of those he met.  In both cases, the apostle rejoiced in the believers who had not allowed the false teachers to lead them away from the truth.

Living in the truth refers to the Christians conducting their lives as they had been commanded by the Father.  The commandment to live in the truth came from the Father through the Son to the disciples, who passed it on to the believers.  As John had explained in another letter.  “And this is his commandment:  We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us.”  (1 John 3:23).  To live in the truth, therefore, involves believing in Jesus Christ as God’s Son (faith) and loving others (action).

Now as we look at verse (1:5), we see that John urged the church to love one another.  This was not a new commandment: the believers had heard this from the beginning.  The Christians had been taught this commandment from the time they first heard the gospel preached.  The statement that Christians should love one another is a recurrent New Testament theme.  Yet love for one’s neighbor is an old command, first appearing in the third book of Moses (Leviticus 19:18).  Believers can show love in many ways: by avoiding prejudice and discrimination, by accepting people, by listening, helping, giving, serving, and by refusing to judge.  Knowing God’s command is not enough.  Those who claim to love God and believe in his Son must put their faith into practice by loving.  (Look at Matthew 22:37-39 and 1 John 2:7-10).

In verse (1:6) lest anyone wonder what John meant by the word “love,” he explained it here.  Love does not focus on emotions or feelings; instead, love means doing what God has commanded.  Love is expressed by obedience; obedience fulfills the command to love.  The one command to love one another sums up all of God’s commands, and obedience to God’s commands is the sure test of love.  John made the same proclamation in his first letter (see 1 John 3:11, 16-19).

Four times in verse 4-6 appears a form of the word”command.”  Yet the commands are obeyed through love.  John wanted his readers to know that he spoke as an Elder, as an apostle, and as a loving father to his children–with authority from God himself.  The false teachers had no such authority, and their lifestyles did not exemplify love.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,196 other followers

%d bloggers like this: