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Hope

God Doesn’t Make Junk

For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Ephesians 2:10

Many people considered famous today were once oddballs who refused to do their art the established way. The painter Jackson Pollock laid a humongous canvas on the floor of his barn and dripped paint on it. The critics thought he was nuts–until people started calling it art. More recently, there’s Lindsey Stirling, who was told by the judges on America’s Got Talent that her unusual combination of dancing and playing the violin was not marketable. After being voted off the show, she took her skills to YouTube to prove the naysayers wrong. Her channel now has 12.4 million subscribers!

“Jackson Pollock, Cathedral, 1947” by Detlef Schobert is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Personal expression doesn’t have to be justified to hold value.

Come to think of it, Jesus was somewhat of an oddball during His days on earth. His ‘art’ was unappreciated by the religious experts, but people with the ears to hear believed (John 1:12). He now has over two billion followers!

If Christ completed the good works God prepared in advance for Him to do, you can too (John 14:12).

Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive who is you-er than you!

Dr Seuss

You are God’s workmanship, and God doesn’t make junk!

https://davidsdailydose.org/2020/05/21/god-doesnt-make-junk/

Categories
Hope

There IS no weather!

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I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:12-13

“There IS no weather!” That’s what veteran runner/trainer Leon Curry said when I told him I get up at 4:15 in the morning to train during the summer–before it gets too hot.

I don’t think Leon meant he ignores the weather; he just doesn’t let it have too much say.

He. Simply. Runs.

In other words: the joy is in the journey. What an amazing attitude!

As an experienced runner, Leon has undoubtedly seen his share of challenging conditions. Through the years, he’s battled injury, dodged traffic, and been chased by snarling dogs. But even so, Leon chooses to focus less on the conditions and more on his mission–to keep running and enjoy it.

The Apostle Paul would have liked my running buddy; the two of them share a common trait–

Passion

Just like Leon, Paul didn’t focus too much on the surrounding conditions, he just kept sharing Jesus with others. The love of Christ compelled him (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).

Paul was willing to put up with EVERYTHING because he found something (the Gospel) that meant more to him than ANYTHING.

For more thoughts about pursuing your passion, please read my post: “Start With Why” https://davidsdailydose.org/2019/06/09/start-with-why/

Categories
Hope

Start With Why

Teach me your way, O Lord; Give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name.

Psalm 86:11

In his best-selling book, “Start With Why,” author and organizational consultant Simon Sinek asserts that WHY we do something is paramount. WHAT we do and HOW we get it done are secondary.

People don’t buy WHAT you do; they buy WHY you do it.

Simon Sinek

Sinek illustrates his philosophy of value before volition with The Golden Circle:

In Golden Circle format, Psalm 86:11 (quoted above) looks like this:

So that I may fear Your Name (Why)
Teach me Your way, O Lord (How)
Give me an undivided heart (What)

An undivided heart means the appearance and the reality are exactly the same–you actually believe what you say and do . However, this can only come from learning God’s ways. But learning God’s ways won’t be a priority unless you WANT to respect and honor Him as He deserves.

Please pause for a moment and think about someone who has truly inspired you.

Has this inspiration led to lasting change in your life?

Chances are good that it did– IF you started with WHY.

Please allow a brief personal illustration.

I was converted at age nine, but at fifteen I sensed God drawing me closer to Him. My pastor suggested I start a daily time of prayer and Bible study; I took his advice, and thirty six years later I still meet God every morning!

It’s not WHAT I do–set aside time every day, or HOW I do it–with certain scriptures and prayers, but WHY–to draw closer to God, that keeps me coming back.

In our life with Christ, may we always Start With Why

The heart writes with permanent marker; authenticity is hard to erase.

Regular David (me)

https://davidsdailydose.org/2019/06/09/start-with-why/

Categories
Hope

Wakey wake, Cupcake

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Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way and me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”

Psalm 139:23-24

I used to get annoyed when my laptop kept telling me it needed a software update, or virus scan, or some other preventive maintenance. Ask me later, I clicked on the screen, “Can’t you see I’m busy!?”

But then, one inevitable day, I got a computer virus that wiped out my entire hard drive. Important documents and hundreds of pictures, which I’d failed to back up, vanished in an instant.

Photo by Rafael Guajardo on Pexels.com

Needless to say, I now keep my computer healthy with regular updates and scans.

The unexamined life is not worth living.

Socrates

Our wise friend from ancient Greece challenges us to scan our lives for purpose and meaning, or risk losing everything. But King David of ancient Israel has a better idea: ask God to do it.

Search me, O God, and know my heart.

King David

After all, heart surgery is best left to the professional. That’s what God told the Old Testament prophet Jeremiah:

“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.”

Jeremiah 17:9-10

Are you like me, to busy to scan until it’s almost too late? Well, let’s both not be that way anymore. Agreed?

A closing Haiku:

Do not say, “I can’t”

When you really mean, “I won’t”

Wakey wake, cupcake.

Regular David (me)
Photo by Plush Design Studio on Pexels.com

https://davidsdailydose.org/2019/06/05/wakey-wake-cupcake/

Categories
Hope

Not Random, PLAN-dom!

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For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Ephesians 2:10

As a child I loved to do those connect the dots activity sheets. Maybe you remember them too?

The problem was, at least early on, I didn’t know to follow the numbers in order. My smiling lion looked more like a lumpy ????, because I connected the dots in a random way. Thankfully, I got better at it–once I knew the plan.

God Dots…

God has an agenda–a pattern for each of us to trace in Christ. All we have to do is follow the numbers.

Remember, you are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do some amazing stuff. And the dots are already there!

Not random, PLAN-dom!

“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

https://davidsdailydose.org/2019/06/04/not-random-plan-dom/

Categories
Anxiety Faith Purpose Security Sufficiency

One Stop Shop

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“His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.”

2 Peter 2:3

My wife and I recently fell in love with a particular cream-filled chocolate cake bar that is hard to find.

Wouldn’t you know, our local supermarket put them on sale, and their entire stock disappeared in one day!


NO!!!


We were out of our all time favorite snack; this couldn’t be happening. Almost daily trips to the store revealed the same empty shelf in the cooler. I even slipped the manager of the dairy section my phone number, asking him to call me the moment they came in.

NOTHING HAPPENED…


But then it did. I was digging in the freezer for some steaks to put on the grill and there they were: two pristine milk bars buried under a bag of broccoli.

YES!!!

I was searching like mad for something I already had.

Does this remind anyone else of their walk with God?

Too many times I’ve been like Moses and Jonah and said, “I can’t do that God; please pick someone else.” And God’s response has been, “I’ve already given you everything you need for the job, David. I want you to do it.”

Searching for that ONE THING in your Christian life? Check the freezer; you may already have it.

God is a one stop shop.

Categories
Hope

The Proof is in the Putting

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“Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.”

Prov 4:23

Visitors to Union Square in Manhattan, NYC are likely to encounter the street performer, Matthew Silver. Described by one YouTube contributor as, “A guy who runs around NYC in his underwear saying and doing radical things,” Matthew paints himself as a, “cosmic trickster opening up the love portal to show us we are all one.”

While his antics are often punctuated with bizarre behavior and crude humor, meant to call attention to his message, Mr. Silver also speaks with amazing philosophical eloquence. Here is a popular example:

“You’re already doing…you’re always doing what’s in your heart; you can’t get away from your heart.”

Matthew Silver

Another fairly famous guy, who said some pretty amazing things agrees:

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Jesus Christ (Matthew 6:21)

Thoughts like these beg the question: What are we putting first in our lives?

The proof is in the putting.

Categories
Hope Purpose Sufficiency

Do Your Thing, Ding-a-ling!

“Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.”

1 Corinithians 12:7

Being a part of a hand bell choir is a rewarding, yet often daunting, experience. Picture nine people standing behind a long line of tables filled with bells. Every ringer plays at least two–one for each hand. Thankfully, you are only responsible for the bells in front of you. A space note in the left hand. A line note in the right. It sounds simple enough, right? But playing your part means finding and following these two notes as they bob up and down in a sea of black ink. Meanwhile, every other ringer at the table is trying to do the same thing! And one mistake can bring EVERYBODY down. It feels like taking a tightrope walk over a waterfall with several of your friends.

“Just play the notes at the proper time and everything will be fine.”

Doris, our brave director.

It seems that playing in a handbell choir is much like being part of a Christian community–the Body of Christ. In his first letter to the Corinthians, the apostle Paul compares the church to a human body whose many parts make up a whole:

“As it is, there are many parts, but one body…If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.”

1 Corinthians 12:20,26

In other words, everyone matters if anyone matters at all.

At this point in your Christian journey, please remember the following:

There are parts of the song that can only be played by you.

So do your thing, ding-a-ling!

“Therefore, dear soul, in this life you are receiving a music lesson from the Father. You are being trained to sing in a choir you cannot see, and there will be parts in the chorus that only you can sing.”

George Matheson
Categories
Purpose Sufficiency

Why we should stop asking, “What would Jesus do?”

turned on pendant lamp
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“My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death,” He (Jesus) said to them.  “Stay here and keep watch.”  Mark 14:34

About twenty years ago, WWJD? was a popular acronym: What Would Jesus Do?

It’s a great thought, but is this completely discernible in the 21st century?  I’m fairly sure the Son of God wouldn’t tweet about what He had for breakfast, but how can one be certain?

Perhaps a better question is, What DID Jesus Do?  Now, this is discoverable!  The scripture above, for instance, records the actual behavior of Jesus in full-blown crisis mode.

In Mark 14:32-42, we find Him in the garden with a few close friends, emotionally and physically drained by the knowledge of his impending death.  The Amplified Bible says he was, “deeply distressed and extremely anguished,” and he, “fell to the ground and prayed.”

So, here are two things Jesus did during the biggest crisis of His earthly life:

  • He sought comfort and guidance from God.
  • He asked a few close friends to come near–both physically and in prayer.

Sounds like a winning formula.

Circle the prayer wagons!

Categories
Purpose

On Purpose for a Purpose

toys letters pay play
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“The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O Lord, endures forever–do not abandon the work of your hands.” Ps. 138:8

What is your life purpose?

Don’t fret if you can’t immediately and succinctly state your reason for existence.  Many of us are in the same boat.

The good news is, God knows what each of our purposes is and has been working on it since we arrived on the planet. Friend, He’s been preparing you your whole life for what comes next.

“We are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”  Eph. 2:10

Embrace your purpose.