What We All Must Pursue

This is the Faith I Live By: I will see God if I pursue peace and holiness.
Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Tuesday, May 14, 2019
Audio Linkhttp://bit.ly/ThoughtsinWorship
“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord”
Hebrews 12:14 (NKJV)

Aspire. Pursue. Persist. Achieve!

With rare exception, people often give up too quickly. We all have dreams, and for a period of time we fixate on them wishing we could achieve them. It is a rare breed of people who see obstacles as inspiration, and use difficulties as fuel to propel them to their next goal. God wants us to put our trust in Him and know that nothing is impossible if we believe (Matthew 17:20).

From Spiritual Failures to Victorious Saints

However, today’s thought is not just about our everyday achievements, although God does care about those. Most importantly, today’s thought is about moving from being spiritual failures to becoming victorious saints. Our theme text exhorts us to pursue peace with others, and holiness. Does that sound familiar? The Ten Commandments are all about that. Love for God and our fellow human beings are the two great commandments that undergird the law.

So in other words, holiness is achieved when we focus on God’s love and His law. Do you see how this works? We receive peace and holiness when we set our focus like we do our goals and allow the power of the Holy Spirit to push us and discipline us as we run. I am not suggesting that these principles are eluding us. It’s just that life’s circumstances often sidetrack those who are not focused on the prize.

Pursue With Faithful Focus

Today can be your day to recommit to pursuing peace and holiness. Yes, there will be a multiplicity of trials, tribulations, temptations, and distractions to get you off track. This is why God promises us angels who excel in strength, along with the Holy Spirit, to provide us all the support we need to achieve God’s standard of holiness. The fact of the matter is, without them none of us will see God. Let’s cooperate with God and help others do the same.

By God’s grace, this is the faith I live by. Let this be the same for you, in Jesus’ name.

Who Wants A Clean House?

Procrastination was not our friend

Drama Files Title TileClinton and Rebecca scheduled an appointment to find some assistance with procrastination within their marriage and household.  They have been married seven years and have a daughter Ashley who is five years old.

During the five years since Ashley’s birth the concern surrounding procrastination has become worse. The couple stated they never argued in front of Ashley but it was becoming  very frustrating to communicate to one another about their weakness in this area.  They became very busy and overwhelmed and began to neglect the duties of the household and being a positive role model for Ashley.

They first began noticing Ashley would leave her toys out and not make her bed and when she was finished eating, she would get up from the table, leave her plate, and not wipe her area or push her chair to the table.  How did Ashley learn this behavior? It was by watching her parents do the same thing.

One evening Rebecca called Clinton into their bedroom.

“What do you see?” she asked.  

“Mess, and this is nothing but procrastination,” Clinton responded.

 That’s when they both felt compelled to reach out and ask for help. They shared with us during the counseling session that their procrastination has now transferred over to Ashley and this concerned them greatly.  “We never saw it coming” they actually said.  She had become lazy and had excuses for not doing what needed to be done. Clinton stated several times during the session that ” the apples don’t fall far from the tree,” and “she is repeating what she observes in us.”

“We come home and put our things wherever. Don’t pick up behind ourselves, and we constantly put things off.”  They now see how their negative behavior has impacted their daughter.  

They asked us to assist them in some coping tools in eliminating procrastination and here’s the plan. Maybe it can help in your home.

Tools to assist in eliminating procrastination:  

1. Recognize that the behavior can’t be corrected until you are ready to implement the action.

2. Set realistic goals, boundaries and timelines to complete all tasks.

3.  Set a red flag line and refuse to cross it.  No going back to nonproductive habits.

4. Prioritize what needs to be addressed  and then have a checklist ready in place in the elimination category of each task accomplished.

5. Pray about your procrastination and ask God to remove the desire to stay in a standstill modality.

6. Be patient during the transition to transformation in one another.

Clinton and Rebecca continue to make progress and they hold each family member accountable for their personal space and as a household unit. They continue with weekly couple and family counseling sessions.

ashley helpsOver the course of counseling the couple stated their home is organized and  more  realistic goals have be accomplished for the family. Ashely is now six years old and has become very efficient around the home and keeping up with her belongings. It was suggested by the therapist to make house cleaning  and organization fun for Ashley with a small reward of appreciation. She has created her own vision board  to maintain her focus.  Clinton and Rebecca have taken full responsibility towards appreciating one another, Ashley, and their home.

The counseling process has different dimensions and every person’s needs are different. It is our desire as the change agents to assist our families to trust God and work diligently to receive the positive outcomes that they each  desire in order to become healthier and happier.

Let all things be done decently and in order.  1 Corinthians 14:40

The names have been changed to protect the innocent.