Like a Flood – A New Month and Changes Coming - Purity 564
Purity 564 11/01/2021 Purity 564 Podcast
Today’s photo of flood waters underneath a calm blue October Sky comes to us from a friend in East Syracuse who just had to share the aftermath of heavy rainstorms that rolled through their area last week, commenting that in 19 years they had never seen “Manlius Center Road THIS flooded!” causing it to be closed just past their neighborhood.
It’s Monday again, and if you are too overwhelmed from the aftereffects of too much Halloween candy from yesterday to realize, I am here to announce that just like a flood the month of November has rolled on in and promises to bring with it changes both expected and unexpected.
On Saturday, I finished some ministry work and decided to celebrate by buying a few treats in the spirit of all Hallows eve eve but was shocked to discover that my local Walmart had already moved on to the next seasons as there was little evidence of Halloween left, even though it hadn’t arrived yet, and the shelves were already being stocked with Thanksgiving and Christmas items! So just like a flood the holiday season is being pushed before us whether we like it or not!
As far as major changes go, with plans to married on January 1st, I and my future bride only have 61 days to work out the details of our nuptials and “get er done.”
If the holiday season and an upcoming wedding weren’t enough, I also start a second job this evening that may prove to lay the groundwork for the next steps towards a change in career somewhere down the road in the unseen future.
The new month and all prospect of all these changes frankly is freaking me out a little but I would like to remind myself and all my friends that although the days and the times are a changing once again, the one thing that we can count on no matter what changes this month may bring is the fact that God is good, He doesn’t change, and He will be with us through whatever twists and turns that may come in the month of November.
Changes are sometimes referred to as “little deaths” as one thing ends and another thing begins but when we have a vibrant relationship with the Lord though faith in Jesus Christ we can know that no matter what comes, we will survive and make it to the other side.
This morning I am reminded of
Psalm 23:4 (NKJV)
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
When we have God in our lives, we don’t have to fear those “little deaths” of change because His care is constant and His love for us endures. And as long as we are walking and talking with God we can bravely walk through the valleys of changing times and proclaim
Psalm 23:6 (NKJV) that says:
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.
Today’s Bible verse is drawn from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.
This morning’s meditation verse is:
Matthew 5:3 (NLT2)
3 “God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
Today’s verse speaks of being spiritually poor and assures us of the blessing that comes when we depend on the Lord.
One clear purpose of the earthly ministry of Christ was to remind mankind of their need for reconciliation with the God. Christ’s messages spoke of the need to repent and to seek entrance into the kingdom of God through faith in Him.
Jesus challenged the religious systems and ideas of the day that claimed that someone could be declared righteous with God by their efforts or by their cultural heritage. Christ’s teachings made it clear that it didn’t matter what your background was because all men sinned and fell short of God’s holy standard.
Jesus’s teachings, miraculous works, and death and resurrection showed mankind that He was the Son of God and God the Son.
Only in realizing our need for Him as a Savior, seeing that His work on the cross can cover our sins, and placing our faith in Jesus can we be made right with God.
When we see how spiritually poor we are, that we can’t save ourselves, and we see our need for Jesus, and make that choice to trust in Him, we are blessed, and the kingdom of God is ours.
So rejoice that you know the Truth that saves and gives you eternal life and remember that your need for God doesn’t stop when you become a Christian. We need God’s presence, wisdom, strength, and love at all times, and it is only though Christ that we can receive it. So walk with Him in the spirit and let those around you know that they need Him, and they too can be blessed and enter into His kingdom by when they make Jesus the Lord of their life.
As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.
Today we continue sharing from June Hunt’s Dating: Secrets to Great Relating When Dating
As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage all to purchase June Hunt’s books for your own private study and to support her work. If you need this title you can find it online at several sites for less than $5.00:
D. How to Develop Godly Dating Practices
Ken and Amanda strive to raise their three daughters so that they understand their value and worth. Knowing that Christ died for them, that God gave His Son for them, that the Holy Spirit resides in them, they know they are special—they are daughters of the King.
Their earthly father sees them as princesses too. Ken demonstrates daily how a godly man treasures a godly woman by the way he treats their mother, his "bride," as he still calls her. Both Ken and Amanda agree and make it clear that the girls will be allowed to date only after they turn 16 and only after a young man receives the stamp of "parental approval." Character counts and the girls' hearts are too precious to entrust to just anyone. Ken and Amanda make it clear they've poured plenty of blood, sweat, and tears into each of their darling daughters, and they have every intention of "protecting" their investment.
Rather than feeling restricted, all three of the daughters feel respected. The dating rules have been clearly described and discussed. They each know their parents want only what's best for them...and they each long to have the same long-lasting love they have seen lived out in the lives of their mother and father. They have learned this biblical truth...
"Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord." (Colossians 3:20)
Dating can be an exciting adventure of the heart leading to marriage, but fragile hearts should be treated with care. In Deuteronomy 6:5 we are called to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength." Therefore, protect your heart because it belongs to God first... before it belongs to you. When a dating friendship grows into a love relationship, your heart still belongs to God, but you share it and entrust it to someone else....
"Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart." (1 Peter 1:22)
Your body was also designed with a purpose for purity (to demonstrate your devotion to obey God, as a gift to your future spouse, and to protect yourself from sexually transmitted diseases). Safeguarding yourself sexually until marriage is another reason to date cautiously and prayerfully. So it is critical to:
- Be Wise—Ask the Lord to...
- —Guide your decision to date
- —Guide the decisions of your date
- —Guard your heart, mind, body, and soul during the dating process
your choices with His peace as you date.
(If you don't have His peace about the person you are dating, do not date that person again.)
- Be Safe—You deserve to be treated well and to be safe.
- —Allow trusted friends and family to introduce you to someone who shares your beliefs and interests.
- —Don't be afraid to "check out" your date by looking them up online and on social media.
- —When you begin to date, spend time together with a group as you get to know each other.
- —Meet in public places as you build trust and observe character. (Only if you respect the character of the one you are dating should you date that person again.)
- Be Real—Just as you want to get to know the person you are dating, be transparent and real with your date.
- —Share the basics: faith, family, friends, background, education.
- —Talk about interests: hobbies, sports, music, movies, pets.
- —Don't be afraid to go deeper: Talk about previous relationships, career, and financial stability.
- —Discuss your expectations for the dating relationship. What do you hope to give and get from it?
- Be Honest—Talk to your date about what you do not enjoy or appreciate.
- —Don't "go along with whatever" just because it's what your date wants.
- —By the same token, don't refuse to try something new—as long as it's not illegal or immoral.
- —If your date says or does something that makes you uncomfortable, speak up and say so.
- —Don't cave in to peer pressure—be willing to say no when you know you should say no. (If you respectfully speak the truth, in the end you will earn respect.)
"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will." (Romans 12:2)
The Initial Ask
Question: "I would like to start dating, but how do I make the first move to ask someone out?"
Answer: The first step is often the hardest, but once that first step is taken, each successive step becomes easier. Start slowly with a casual group invitation where there is less pressure on each person. Then move forward with a casual invitation for coffee, ice cream, or lunch. Once you've established a level of comfort with each other, progress to a dinner invitation.
- Group invitation
- —"Several of us are going to a ( concert, picnic, theme park, movie, etc. ). Would you like to join us?"
- Lunch invitation
- —"I've been thinking about what you said regarding ( subject ). Would you be interested in talking more about it over coffee/lunch?"
- Dinner invitation
- —"I've admired how ( mention a character trait—kind/thoughtful/encouraging ) you are, especially when you ( mention a specific incident ). May I take you out to dinner?"
The Bible explains that having what we want often begins with simply asking for what we want, and it's always best to start by asking God....
"You do not have, because you do not ask." (James 4:2 ESV)
Question: "Is it scriptural to participate in matchmaking services?"
Answer: Since the 1990s, Internet dating and face-to-face subscription dating services have mushroomed in popularity among non-Christians and Christians alike. As with any major decision that relies on judgment and integrity, a decision to use dating services should be approached with great caution and care.... and great prayer. Opportunities abound for fraud, and the ability to get to know others is only as effective as their willingness to reveal their true, authentic selves. Before you decide to participate in a dating service, examine yourself.
- What are your motives?
- What are your goals?
- Do you have a contented spirit?
- Do you have the peace of God?
- Will you involve your Christian community (small group, Christian friends, and family) to offer advice and accountability in your online dating decisions and experiences?
Always remember, God is your source....A dating service is not. Scripture says...
"No good thing does he [God] withhold from those whose walk is blameless" (Psalm 84:11).
Biblical Counseling Keys: Dating: Secrets to Great Relating When Dating.
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