Winning

I am not a betting man, but it would probably be a sure bet that you want to WIN in life.
Some say ‘he who dies with the most toys wins’ but that does not do much to help feel like a winner deep down inside.
Truth of the matter is, there is only one way to win. Put your heart, hand and life into the hands of the One who already won. The one who conquered the grave and will one day make His enemies his footstool.
I agree with the apostle Paul, the only way to win is in Christ. He who dies in Christ WINS!
This is the secret of life, the secret of the ages. “Christ in you, the Hope of glory.”
Humble yourself and give your entire life to Him and YOU WIN!!! No ifs ands or buts. There is no other way.

two types of sorrow

Paul tells us about two types of sorrow. One with hope and one without. Looking at 1Thess. 4:13 and following, we find them described for us. Sorrow is going to touch each of our lives. The impact it has on us will be determined by a past decision.The decision that makes all the difference in the world is what you have done with Jesus, Lord of Glory.

The Hope of Glory is the giver of internal/eternal hope. In the relationship one can have with Jesus, He establishes a peace that is unexplainable from the standpoint of the flesh.

Sorrowing without the Peace of Jesus is a lonely and confused place to be. When you or I give Him our life, He takes better care of you than you do with anything you have been entrusted to care for. He is faithful to care for you through any and all of the circumstances experienced daily.

Only those who sorrow without hope would ever consider calling Christ a crutch. Those who know Him, know the power that is experienced during the time of sorrow. Not pie in the sky but Peace in the heart. 

 

Chains of unforgiveness

imageLike chains around the neck, nobody puts them there but we ourselves. Just as we put them there it is up to you and I to remove them ourselves. Chains of unforgiveness will cause you to become week in the knees and develope pains in your back. Eventually your joints will begin to wear out from the weight. To lighten the load requires the removal of the chains. The person who has wronged you feels no pain. people around you may try to help you, but ultimately it is up to you to decide to let go and remove them.

I grew up with a small spring running across our farm. There were times we would need to get from one side of the creek to the other. If we didn’t have on rubber boots we would though big rocks into the water in a row. This would allow us to cross the water and not get our feet wet. Think of forgiveness as a river, we need to learn how to get from bitterness, resentment, anger and hatred on one side to the other side where there is peace, harmony,wholeness and unity. So, how do we do that/

Throw five rocks into the running water and see if you can cross.

Rock # 1, Bring to your mind the hurt. Do it in a vivid way.

Rock # 2, Talk about it, share it , even right about it. Emphasise it in every way you can.

Rock # 3, Offer sincerely and completely, to the person who offended you, forgiveness. Use whatever technique you need to.

Rock # 4, Do it publicly so that others can help hold you accountable for you word to forgive.

Rock #5, Hold on to the promise that you have & will forgive. Forgiveness is something we continue to do, once we have given our word.

Help with forgiveness

Forgiveness

When it comes to forgiveness, it is an issue of love or hate. We each have a strong desire for those we wrong to forgive us. However, when it comes to forgiving others we seem to drag our feet. After all, ‘they did it to me.’ Worst of all, and perhaps most detrimental to us, is when we refuse to forgive ourselves. When we refuse to forgive, for whatever reason, we are only hurting ourselves. It is like adding links to a chain and wrapping them around our neck and waist. God forgave us while we were still His enemies, setting an example and placing the height of the bar. This means , once we are in Christ, we are to reflect this same character to those around us.
Just as love is a choice so is forgiveness. A choice! God made a choice based on “LOVE” A very well known American once said “We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover  this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.” Martin Luther King Jr. I believe he was mostly right. The place where I differ from Martin is, it is sometimes impossible to get past some wrongs done to us without God’s help. With His help and His indwelling power can forgive anyone for anything. Oh, it may require some wrestling, but that is because our righteous spirit is fighting with our flesh. For the unbeliever it simply a choice to do what the flesh cries out for. “I don’t get mad I just get even.”
The longer we let it fester the harder it is to release it to His hands. Do it quickly. If you love Jesus, you will forgive simply because He told you to. The sooner we detect cancer and do something about it the better our chances of restored health. Unforgiveness is akin to cancer in that it destroys. The big difference is, it is not hidden. People around you will see it and not listen to anything you have to say concerning Christianity, Jesus’ love and/or God’s forgiveness. We are, according to 2 Corinthians chapter 5, ambassadors with a very specific task as long as we remain in this foreign land. That task is the MINISTRY of reconciliation. Note: there can be no reconciliation without forgiveness. God was in Christ reconciling you to Him. Now, Christ is in you empowering you to be a catalyst for changing peoples lives. By your exorcize of forgiveness others will see that it is a way to live in peace and sweet rest.
According to Matthew chapter 6 there is a direct connection between forgiving fellow man and being forgiven by God. This isn’t my opinion or my interpretation; this is a fact of TRUTH concerning how God works. There is no other way to interpret this. Do you want God to forgive you your trespasses? Well, what do you need to do as one prerequisite? Yes, forgive. You can either make the necessary changes in your heart or make excuses. Forgiveness is a choice. When God forgives He removes the consequences and condemnation of sin. “There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,” Romans 8:1-2. We remove our judgement of the person who wronged us. Remember you are human and could have committed the same offense to someone else. Pray for a desire from God to reconcile with the person who wronged you. No matter what it is. It is a matter of obedience.
God cannot work through you or I as long as there is unforgiveness. The fruit of the Spirit mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23 “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control are totally unidentifiable in the life of one who refuses to forgive. Forgiveness is a demonstrative power of God in the lives of His children; people who are called by His name.Go ahead and talk about Jesus all you want with the lost around you, but isf you are full of unforgiveness they will get tunnel vision toward your chains of bitterness and that is all they will ever see. What type of witness do you want to have in your ambassadorship?
The Greek word for forgive means to totally let it go and total release. So, the choice is yours. Forgive and you will be forgiven. Do it because you love Jesus and desire to be the best, most effective ambassador in the ministry of reconciliation that you can possibly be. Luke chapter 6 lays out very effectively why we are to forgive. To be different than the rest of the world. Think of the Golden Rule. Do you want others to forgive you? Then you must start by forgiving others. Love, forgiveness, peace and happiness are undeniably tied together.
Believe God, release the chains of unforgiveness at His feet and experience the sweet release, as well as the freedom you will enjoy as the result.

Just write it

When it comes to writing, nearly everyone I know wants to write something. It may be fiction or it may be a story of their life, but no one seems to do anything about it. Hmm? That includes me. Well, it’s time to do something about it. I am just going to ‘WRITE IT‘.  Then I can say I did it, not “I am going to.”

This first post on word press is the beginning of many stories on paper by Rick Thomas and the end of a head and heart full of stories. So what, if nobody likes them. I will be able to say I wrote them. Maybe, just maybe one of them will help encourage or uplift someone.

One can only read and study the techniques and fundamentals of an action for so long. There will come a point where he will begin to literally doubt his integrity or she will wonder if her entire life is just one big lie. Study and knowledge without follow through leads to apathy and arrogance. The worst part is, it makes you look foolish. “All talk and no do.”

Even if this is coherent to nobody but me, at least it will be therapeutic for me. In the last six weeks I have realized I was the person I just described. That person better put on a breathing apparatus because I am leaving him in the dust. A due’ ole man.

Staring in a mirror looking at something you can’t stand to look at is a painful experience. A choice becomes apparent. Do I continue as I am or do I change. Ouch! There is that word that has so many uncomfortable memories attached to it. Sorry, I digress. Change is always a choice. It will always be with us. Embrace it and make the necessary changes to head in the direction you need and want to go.

I love being a jack of all trades. I thoroughly enjoy doing many different things. The drawback or downside to living this way is one never becomes an expert at any one precise activity. I am okay with not being the best at something and I admire those who are. For me to focus on only one thing day after day ties me up in knots inside and I feel as though I am about to come unraveled.

So here are some of the things going on in my life right now. All of these are going on simultaneously. In the constructive and creative realm I am remodeling an old cabin

Back porch at Old Cabin

Quite an undertaking

Rick pouring concrete pads for new strong back

as well as building a new cabin,

6 inches thick

Canted logs drying

out of native timbers from the property

Great Room is 28' x20'

it will set on.

My garden is doing quite nicely (35 ft square plot). I sing at six nursing homes a month and a christian gathering spot one night a month. I teach a bible study on Wednesday nights. In addition to preaching three times a week at my assembly, this week I am preaching a series of meetings at for another congregation as we pray for revival to spark among them.

Now, in another realm, I am building a website, writing blog and back to working on my books. I am working on getting healthier. (Lost 20 lbs in 60 days) and have just started a hobby of back packing and hiking. Am a promoter of ‘Body By Vi’ – how I lost the weight effortlessly. As often as I can I am riding horses so I can be prepared when “shooting” starts in October on the christian-western movie “The White Ridera Sean Hunt film. Filmed in S.W. Missouri and N.E. Oklahoma. Practicing my evil laugh for the villainous part I will play.

I am married to my lovely, witty, best friend for 30 years, Sandra. I have two adult children who are married and have a total of three grandchildren. I love spending time with family. I am close with my dad and mom as well as my brother and sister. We all enjoy getting together often.

My life here on Earth is a blessing from God. I will continue to grow in my walk and relationship with Him everyday as long as I am here. One of my major objectives in this foreign land is to be an ambassador for the Kingdom of Heaven. You, and everyone I know and meet, need to understand just how much your creator loves you.

Well do you think I have enough to keep me busy for a while. i didn’t even mention my hobbies. Oh well that’s enough for now. You can follow me  at TWITTER and on  FACEBOOK.  If I haven’t bored you too much, my insane journal which deals with my life in another way is RICK”S INSANE JOURNAL.