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Showing posts with label Joy Story. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Joy Story. Show all posts

Monday, June 5, 2023

The Joy Stories of Our Lives - 28 Day Joy Challenge – Day 4 – Purity 1060


The Joy Stories of Our Lives - 28 Day Joy Challenge – Day 4 –  Purity 1060

Purity 1060 06/05/2023 Purity 1060 Podcast

Purity 1060 on YouTube: 



Good morning,

Today’s photo of yours truly, fully laden with backpack and clipped on accessories, hiking between the tire ruts of  Old Town Road (or Schenk Road) into the forest green beyond comes to us from TammyLyn Clark who captured this scene on May 29th during our commute to our weekend accommodation of Nemorod Cabin in the Merck Forest and Farmland Center in Rupert Vermont.  

Well, It’s Monday, and my Memorial Day Vacation is officially over as I go “back to life, back to reality” and as much as I will reflect on the joy that I had in taking some time off from work this past week, I have to admit that I have a significant amount of joy anticipating the “return to normal” that accompanies going back to work and returning to the routine that defines most of the weeks of the year and frames most of the days of my life, thus far.  

I have been working for my employer 26 years and even though my career is a story of regular changes and transitions, I know how blessed I am to have had a “steady” job and an income that has provided for my needs and bankrolled quite a number of fulfilled goals and dreams.   I know that my job has provided me and my family with what we needed to live and even though there have been changes in what my family looks like since the time I started at my company, “the job” surprisingly has been something I could count on. So you won’t catch me gripping about work, at least not for very long anyway because it continues to provide for me and in many ways, it was only because of my decision to work there, that I was able to survive and come to the place I am today.  

No single aspect of our lives defines completely, and as much as I encourage people to focus on their faith and their relationship with the Lord, much of our mission in God’s kingdom will be spent making our ends meet at our “9 to 5” jobs.  And if we can’t practice gratitude and appreciation for our work lives, much of our lives with be a practice of dissatisfaction, frustration, and anger over “having to work at a place like this!”  

Oh, yeah, in the last week I know of 2 people’s lives who are being negatively affected by a lack of work – one suddenly dismissed, another who is on the verge of financial collapse because of a history of foolishness, stubbornness, and rebellion.  Their dire straits make me imagine that whatever complaints they may have had about previous employers suddenly don’t seem so important as they enter into the future not knowing how they will pay their bills.  

On the other hand, even though we may receive financial compensation, if we are working in a hostile environment of a “soul sucking siege” (like I used to describe my office job), one of two things need to change.  Wisdom would dictate that we either make a plan to get out and find another place to work or we need to do the “hard work” of changing our attitude.  Instead of living an “unhappy life”, we need to honestly look at our situations and decided to flip the script.  One way or another, if we want a life of peace and contentment, we need to change the story.    

And that brings us to our current series where I am walking through the 28 Day Joy Challenge, (https://4habits.org/) because we are encouraging ourselves and others, you, to “change the story” of our lives by increasing our capacity for joy and by building our emotional resilience through simple practices of quieting, appreciation, and “storytelling”.

The 28 Day Joy challenge is based on Dr. Marcus Warner & Chris Coursey’s latest book, The Four Habits of Joy-Filled People, and you can sign up to take it for free, and purchase a variety of books from Warner and Coursey on topic of Joy, by going to https://4habits.org/.  

So let’s jump into Day 4, which will direct us to tell a “joy story” from our lives.

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Day 4 - Joy Stories

Welcome to Day 4 of the 28 Days to Joy Challenge!

Today’s Encouragement:

Joy is being glad to be together, and we are so glad to be on this journey with you! By reading this email and turning your mind toward joy, you are bringing more joy into the world around you. This affects not just your life, but everyone you come in contact with!

Today’s Practice: Exercise 4

We are going to practice remembering joy in a situation from the past.

- How This Exercise Will Benefit You:

We sometimes call appreciation “packaged joy.” Remembering a time in the past that was enjoyable and savoring how it felt, sounded, smelled, looked, etc., trains us to feel joy in the present and expect joy in the future.

- Exercise Steps:

Remember a story about a favorite trip you took, or time spent at a favorite spot (like a lake, a house, or a dorm room). Share your story and thoughts with a friend.

Have fun with this exercise. We pick up tomorrow with more joy practice!

This morning I sat down to do this challenge and decided to “tell the story” of my recent weekend away at the Nemorod Cabin with my wife.  I have already shared a little about my backpacking weekend already, so maybe I am cheating a bit here, but I want to tell all the same because of the enduring peace and joy that I had in that experience.  

I rather spontaneously “booked” the trip to spend two nights in a cabin located in the woods near Mount Antone area of Rupert Vermont having never “backpacked” before so my wife TammyLyn and I entered into the weekend with a mix of excitement and mild anxiety over the uncertainty of what it would be like.  However, even though you can’t control the things that you don’t know about – in this case - what hiking would be like, the weather, the lay of the land, or the things we would find at our final destination.  We did have control over the things we decided to bring with us and perhaps more importantly, the attitude that we took with us.

 And right from the beginning, perhaps because we didn’t know what we would encounter in the woods, we both turned to one another to support and encourage ourselves that “we could do this” and to make sure that our lines of communication would be clear and that “we” ourselves would not be “a problem” that we would have to overcome. 

 From the very beginning TammyLyn and I assured one another that we were in this together and that we would help each other to accomplish what we hoped would be a peaceful and enjoyable weekend away.   

We were fully ladened on our hike to the cabin and it was physically taxing right from the start so before we got too far into the hike, I turned to TammyLyn to assure her that my thoughts for her we “good” and that even though our individual paces may keep us separated from time to time along the trail, I was not separated from her in my mind and I was not thinking any negative thoughts toward her in regards to her pace or anything else and was only focusing on taking one step at a time, slow but steady, to get to the cabin.  I assured her that my thoughts for her were positive and if I seemed distant in anyway it was only because I was focusing on the journey before us.  She confessed that she was glad to hear it because the inner dialog of her thoughts had been concerned about “keeping up” or that “ he has to wait for me”. So I told her to silence those thoughts because I in no way was thinking anything along those lines.   

So we trudged on through and we made it to the cabin which was only a few miles into the forest, but I felt great relief to the point of physical shock at taking off that backpack -like “giving birth”.  After our arrival, we just enjoyed the quiet of the woods and the peace and joy of one another’s company.  That first day, we rested for a time in the dark cozy confines of the loft of our weekend home before heading out for an afternoon hike to see some of the surrounding trails and woods and spent the evening in front a roaring fire outside.  On Day 2 we enjoyed streaming church and planned an expedition to Mount Antone and other trails and campsites for the day before returning to spend the afternoon and evening reading and resting at our weekend home in the woods.  

I am not a “born again” outdoorsman by any means but really enjoyed our weekend in the woods. The quiet, the wonder of hiking through the trails, the fire, the sun, the air, and the peace of it all in the company of my wife makes me want to encourage all of you to make plans to “get away from it all” by going somewhere this summer but with the reminder that the most important thing you can pack for your trip is an attitude of gratitude, peace, and wonder – where your intentions are simple and for the good of those you travel with.  

That’s my “joy story” and I’m sticking to it.  

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For those who want more evidence for Christianity than my simple apologetic will provide, I offer apologist, Frank Turek’s website, https://crossexamined.org/ .

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Today’s Bible verse comes to us from “The NLT Bible Promise Book for Men”.

This morning’s meditation verse is:

Psalm 20:7 (NLT2)
7  Some nations boast of their chariots and horses, but we boast in the name of the LORD our God.

 

Today’s verse encourages us to focus on what really matters and to boast in the name of the Lord our God – Jesus!  

 

I suppose today we would boast about our nation’s military might or individually, our cool “cars” or other possessions of status – that we would boast about things we own or are associated with that are “powerful”.   But the Christian should rightly recognize that our power and prestige pales in comparison of the power and glory of the Lord.   Instead of lifting ourselves up because of the things we possess, we lift up the Lord because He is the most powerful and everything, really, belongs to Him  -as He is the Creator, Sustainer, and Finisher of all things.  He makes them, He breaks them, and He chooses what will last.  

 

So we boast in the Lord because we know that we are weak but when we put our faith in Jesus and align ourselves with God’s will and ways, we are more than conquerors because of His strength, guidance, and love.

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As always, I invite all to go to mt4christ.org where I always share insights from prominent Christian theologians and counselors to assist my brothers and sisters in Christ with their walk.

Today we continue sharing from  The Holy Spirit By A.W. Pink.

As always, I share this information for educational purposes and encourage you all to purchase A.W. Pink’s books for your own private study and to support his work.  This resource is available online for $0.99 (https://www.amazon.com/Holy-Spirit-Arthur-Pink-Collection-ebook/dp/B008CM5292/ref=sr_1_3?crid=AHKAQOM39CTN&keywords=a.w.+pink+the+holy+spirit&qid=1684376225&sprefix=a.w.+pink+the+holy+spirit+%2Caps%2C96&sr=8-3)  

A.W. Pink’s The Holy Spirit  

7 - The Holy Spirit and Christ

The Spirit in the Incarnation and Baptism of Christ

We have already contemplated the first anointing of the Lord Jesus when, in His mother’s womb, His humanity was endowed with all spiritual graces, and when through childhood and up to the age of 30 He was illuminated, guided, and preserved by the immediate operations of the Third Person in the Godhead. We come now to briefly consider His second anointing, when He was formally consecrated unto His public mission and Divinely endowed for His official work. This took place at the River Jordan, when He was baptized by His forerunner. Then it was, while emerging from the waters, that the heavens were opened, the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in the form of a dove, and the voice of the Father was heard testifying unto His infinite pleasure in His incarnate Son (Matthew 3:16, 17). All the references to that unique transaction call for close examination and prayerful study.

The first thing that is recorded after this is, “And Jesus being full of the Holy Spirit, returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness” (Luke 4:14). The reason why we are told this seems to be for the purpose of showing us that Christ’s humanity was confirmed by the Spirit and made victorious over the devil by His power. Hence it is we read that right after the temptation, “And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee” (Luke 4:14). Next we are told that He entered the synagogue at Nazareth and read from Isaiah 61, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He hath anointed Me to preach the Gospel to the poor; He hath sent Me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised; to preach the acceptable year of the Lord,” and declared, “This day is this Scripture fulfilled in your ears” (Luke 4:18, 19, 21).

Here, then, is to be seen the leading distinction between the first and second “grades” of Christ’s “unction” from the Spirit. The first was for the forming of His human nature and the enduing it with perfect wisdom and faultless holiness. The second was to endow Him with supernatural powers for His great work. Thus the former was personal and private, the latter official and public; the one was bestowing upon Him of spiritual graces, the other imparting to Him ministerial gifts. His need for this double “anointing” lay in the creature-nature He had assumed and the servant-place which He had taken; and also as a public attestation from the Father of His acceptance of Christ’s Person and His induction into His mediatorial office. Thus was fulfilled that ancient oracle, “The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD; and shall make Him of quick understanding” (Isa. 11:2, 3).

“For He whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God; for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto Him” (John 3:34). This at once brings out the pre-eminence of Christ, for He receives the Spirit as no mere man could. Observe the contrast pointed out by Ephesians 4:7, “But unto everyone of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.” In none but the Mediator did “all the fullness of the Godhead” dwell “bodily” (Col. 2:9). The uniqueness of the Spirit’s relation to our Lord comes out again in Romans 8:2, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” Note carefully the words we have italicized: not only does this statement reveal to us the source of all Christ’s actions, but it intimates that more habitual grace dwells in Him than in all created beings.[1]

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Join our “Victory over the Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker”, "Freedom in Christ" series of Discipleship Classes via the mt4christ247 podcast!

at https://mt4christ247.podbean.com, You can also find it on Apple podcasts

(https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/the-mt4christ247s-podcast/id1551615154). The mt4christ247 podcast is also available on Google Podcasts, Amazon Podcasts, Spotify, iHeartradio, and Audible.com. 

These teachings are also available on the MT4Christ247 You Tube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@MT4Christ247

Email me at mt4christ247@gmail.com to receive the class materials, share your progress, and to be encouraged.

My wife, TammyLyn, also offers Christian encouragement via her Ask Seek Knock blog (https://tammylynask.blogspot.com/ ),  her Facebook Group: Ask, Seek, Knock (https://www.facebook.com/groups/529047851449098 ) and her podcast Ask, Seek, and Knock on Podbean (https://feed.podbean.com/tammalyn78/feed.xml)

For those who require the assistance of a Deeper Walk International Prayer Minister to experience healing or your freedom in Christ, I highly recommend Christy Edge’s Life on the Edge Freedom Prayer Ministry. You can schedule a session by going to : https://cedge216.wixsite.com/life-on-the-edge     

“The views, opinions, and commentary of this publication are those of the author, M.T. Clark, only, and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of any of the photographers, artists, ministries, or other authors of the other works that may be included in this publication, and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of any entities the author may represent.”

Encouragement for the Path of Christian Discipleship


[1] Arthur Walkington Pink, The Holy Spirit (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, n.d.).