What's On Our Minds
WHEN GOD GIVES YOU CHILDREN March 24 2023
WHEN GOD GIVES YOU A child
When God gives you a child – as a parent, grandparent or even great grandparent - whether as a tiny infant baby, a foster child, an adopted child, or under some other circumstance, God tells us in Psalm 139:16 that He has plans for your child, even before he/she was born.
We know from scripture that God created us – unique and special – that He knit our body together in our Mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13-14); that we were created in the likeness of God (Genesis 1:27); that He gave us unique gifts and talents (I Cor.12:4-5). We were even created with different personalities: for example, Peter was bold and impetuous (John 18:10 or Acts 17:22) while Luke was detailed and meticulous with words (Luke 1:1-4). We see those differences and uniqueness’s very early in a child’s life. We discovered, when he was only a few weeks old, that one of my babies was soothed by strains of classical music, while another needed absolute quiet. As they got a little older one excelled in math while another hated math and loved to sing and dance.
Your child was created by God as a unique and special person. While each of us is created unique and special, we are all called by God for one purpose. Luke 10:27 tells us: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and, Love your neighbor as yourself.”
If we love God with all our heart, our decisions in life will be based on His principles. We will glorify Him in all things and strive to bring others to Him.
If we love Him with all our soul, we will obey Him in all things.
If we love Him with all our strength, we will trust Him in all things and praise and honor Him for His power and majesty.
If we love Him with all our mind, we will take care not to fill our minds with things which are earthly, sensual, and devilish.
Because we have different personalities and talents and spiritual gifts, we may accomplish these things in different ways. Suppose your child is the one who is soothed by classical music, he/she may prefer a quieter more subdued style of worship. The child who loves to sing and dance will no doubt prefer a more upbeat, more interactive style of worship. One child may bring glory to God by writing great study books; while another may do it through service to the poor and needy; and yet another will be the one who brings Him glory as a devoted leader in the church or as the person who always encourages others.
As a parent we are quick to recognize that it is our responsibility to feed, clothe, and shelter our child. As a parent we are usually thinking ahead about education and success in the marketplace. While these are good things – they pale in comparison to our real responsibility which scripture says is:
Your responsibility “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger [do not exasperate them to the point of resentment with demands that are trivial or unreasonable or humiliating or abusive; nor by showing favoritism or indifference to any of them], but bring them up [tenderly, with lovingkindness] in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” Eph. 6:4 (amp).
“These words, (laws of God) which I am commanding you today, shall be [written] on your heart and mind. You shall teach them diligently to your children [impressing God’s precepts on their minds and penetrating their hearts with His truths] and shall speak of them when you sit in your house and when you walk on the road and when you lie down and when you get up.” Deut. 6:6-7 (amp)
If you, yourself, do not have God’s truths in your mind and in your actions, you cannot teach them to your children.
Don’t ever stop being kind and truthful. Let kindness and truth show in all you do. Write them down in your mind as if on a tablet. Prov. 3:3 (icb)
While taking your child to church and involving them in church activities is important – remember this, these verses command that YOU teach them in every aspect of your daily life. Do you take advantage of ‘teachable moments’ to instill God’s precepts? Do you read to them from the Bible? Do you pray with them? And start as soon as they enter your life to speak and sing to them of God and His love. Even the infant child is learning. Researchers tell us that a child is born ready to learn.
Everything your child hears, everything your child sees, everything your child reads is stored in their mind and the decisions they make for a lifetime will be made based upon what is stored in their minds. If they play violent video games, their minds have stored violence; if they observe attitudes in the home of disrespect to others, quarreling, impatience, or anger, these traits are likewise stored in their minds. If they listen to songs with worldly lyrics, they are storing information that can color the truth of God. If they watch movies or videos that portray characters who have God like attributes, it can diminish their understanding of the omnipotence of Jehovah God. We could go on, but you get the point.
While we cannot shield them from all negative and ungodly information, we MUST – in every way possible - make sure that your child sees, hears, and observes that which is in keeping with God’s commands.
"Finally, believers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable and worthy of respect, whatever is right and confirmed by God’s word, whatever is pure and wholesome, whatever is lovely and brings peace, whatever is admirable and of good repute; if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think continually on these things [center your mind on them, and implant them in your heart].” Phil.4:8 (amp)
Let me encourage you to pray always for your child that God will put a hedge of protection around them to shield them from Satan’s fiery darts. Pray always for yourself for wisdom and for strength. If you are the grandparent, pray for the parents. Teach your child to pray so when their young hearts are broken or hurting, they can go to God instead of depending on this world.
... Pat A. Bishop
SOMETHING SPECIAL – God’s Love is Something Special (A glimpse of God’s love for you – now and for eternity) Volume 4, October, 2022 November 08 2022
Volume 4, October, 2022
Little Bobby had been trying to learn the 23rd Psalm so he could recite it at Sunday school. When his turn came to recite, he said, “The Lord is my shepherd…and that’s all I need to know.” Indeed it is!
WHAT GOOD IS THE BIBLE??
Have you ever needed some wisdom when making a decision?
Have you ever been lonely or depressed?
Have you ever wondered about what happens when you die?
Have you ever been concerned about what is happening in our world today?
Have you ever felt hopeless?
The Bible is God’s instruction book:
The INSTRUCTIONS of the Lord are PERFECT------they REFRESH our soul
The DECREES of the Lord are TRUSTWORTHY------they make us WISE.
The PRECEPTS of the Lord are RIGHT-----they bring JOY to the heart.
The COMMANDMENTS of the Lord are CLEAR-----they give INSIGHTS FOR LIVING.
The FEAR of the Lord is PURE-----ENDURES FOREVER.
The LAWS of the Lord are TRUE------are RIGHTEOUS.
The LAWS of the Lord----are MORE DESIRABLE than the finest GOLD
The LAWS of the Lord----are SWEETER than HONEY.
The LAWS of the LORD---are a WARNING.
The LAWS of the LORD---are a GREAT REWARD for those who obey.
Excerpt from Psalm 19:7-11
FROM THE GOOD OLD DAYS
In my home when I was growing up family devotion time was not an optional event. We had family devotion every day. I remember one time my dad, who was a pastor, decided all the children would be given Bible quizzes to solve. One that I remember was: “What state in the United States is mentioned in the Bible.” I got out my Bible and for days I searched and I searched. I looked up ever so many words from the concordance and the index in the back of the Bible (we didn’t have things like Google Search then). I didn’t enjoy having to tell my Dad that I had failed. He just chuckled and said, “Noah looked out of the ‘ark and saw’.” I think he was stretching things a bit but he had achieved his goal. This was just one of the ways that Dad helped us learn the value of reading and studying God’s Word.
“And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.” 2 Timothy 3:15 (kjv)
Volume 3,September, 2022 October 15 2022
BE OF GOOD CHEER
Weary? “God is our mighty fortress; always ready to help in times of trouble; and so we won’t be afraid! … the Lord, all powerful is with us.” Psalm 46
WHAT DO YOU KNOW ABOUT JEHOVAH GOD?
God is not a man. He is Holy –unique and set apart. “God is greater than any human…” Job 33:12
“God is no mere human.” Numbers 23:19a. “And one called to the other and said, Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory.” Isa. 6:3.
God is THE creator – God made you. “You (God) are the one who put me together inside my mother’s womb…” Psalm 139:13-16
God is All-Powerful. “The Son radiates God’s own glory and expresses the very character of God, and He sustains everything by the mighty power of His command.” Heb.1:3.
God rules over everything. God is THE King. “God is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and the Lord of lords.” 1 Tim.6:15. ”God does what He wants with the army of heaven and the inhabitants of the earth. There is no one who can hold back His hand.” Daniel 4:35.
God never lies or changes His mind. He always keeps His promises. “God is not man, that He should lie, or a son of man, that He should change His mind. Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken, and will he not fulfill it.” Numbers 23:19.
God wants you to become His son or daughter – a Prince or a Princess of THE King and live with Him in heaven for all eternity. “For all who are led by the Spirit are sons of God…but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba Father.” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children, then heirs - heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with Him in order that we may be glorified with Him.” Romans 8:14-17. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have ever lasting life.” John 3:16.
FROM THE GOOD OLD DAYS
I was fourteen years old and my two siblings were 11 and 9 when my parents got the call that a young mother had died suddenly leaving behind several young children and an infant only four months old. Could we take care of the infant for a while until the father could make provision for caring for the children? Long story short, the baby never left our home and my parents soon officially adopted him. Jay became a son of John and Irene Avants. My parents made sure he knew he was adopted right from the very beginning. Jay was proud to be an Avants. And, he took great pleasure, even as a toddler, when someone would tell my mother that he looked like her. He delighted in the fact that he was “adopted.”
Have you been adopted by THE KING?
Volume 2, August, 2022 August 08 2022
BE OF GOOD CHEER
Discouraged? “Lord, God, You stretched out your mighty arm and made the sky and the earth AND You can do anything.” Jeremiah 32:17
Consider this: It took some 1500 years; some 40 different writers from all walks of life - prophets, fishermen, kings, tax collectors & etc.- who lived in several different countries/continents to write the Bible. With that in mind, think about these verses:
Genesis 1:1 – Moses – 1446 BC “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”
Romans 1:20 – Paul - 57 AD “God’s eternal power and character cannot be seen. But from the beginning of creation, God has shown what these are like by all He has made.”
Isaiah 42:5 – Isaiah – 585 BC “I am the Lord God. I created the heavens like an open tent above. I made the earth and everything that grows on it. I am the source of life for all who live on earth…”
Revelations 4:11 –John – 95 AD – “Our Lord and God, you are worthy to receive glory, honor, and power. You created all things and by Your decision they are and were created.”
FROM THE GOOD OLD DAYS
I grew up on a 100 acre farm. Watching a tiny seed of popcorn planted in the earth become an entire cob of corn with hundreds of popcorn seeds on it; or planting one peanut and at harvest time pulling from the ground multiple clumps of several peanut hulls each with at least 2 peanuts was a mighty testament to God’s creative power.
But hot roasted peanuts or delicious, hot popcorn required actions on our part. We had to remove the fully gown ear of corn from the plant and then it took some hard work to use your thumb and your fingers to force each individual kernel of corn from the dried cobb.
The peanuts had to first be dried out by placing them in the sun on top of the barn’s tin roof for several days. Then each peanut hull had to be pulled off the dry vines and bagged up to be roasted throughout the winter. Oh! The smell and taste of those freshly roasted peanuts or that delicious popcorn either of which we had worked hard to have. Popcorn and peanuts were not as readily available at the store as they are today.
Much like the tiny peanut or the single kernel of popcorn becoming something pleasant in your mouth, so is God’s Word. As we read the words and plant them in our minds they will take root. As we study the words in the Bible and apply them to our lives we soon find them bringing us real joy and eternal life.
THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO
“Everything in the scripture is God’s Word. All of it is useful for teaching and helping people and for correcting them and showing them how to live." 2 Timothy 3:16
“Knowing these (God’s) teachings will mean true life and good health for you.” Proverbs 4:22
Volume 1, July, 2022 August 08 2022
STORY TIME - The psalmist in Psalm 139 tells us that God knows everything I do and everywhere I go. Well. I believe He knows everything my old Chevy Impala does and everywhere it goes. A week ago one of my grandsons I hadn’t seen in 3 years (he had moved to Colorado) and one of my great grandsons who lives in Virginia were to be visiting relatives in Columbia, SC. I so wanted to see them and I decided I would drive (in my old Chevy) to Columbia (some 90 miles away) and I did so (much to my children’s disapproval- after all, I am 87 years old and etc.). The trip went well. I didn’t drive my old car very much the next week until Saturday morning. I got in my car to go to the grocery store and before I was much more than out of my parking spot my car decided it was in control and all but stopped in the middle of the road –moving at a turtle’s pace. I managed to turn around and creep back into my parking lot. Now I tell you this because I believe God (who knew the throttle sensors in the car were about to die) not only delayed their death until I got back home but He made sure it happened in a safe environment for me. Maybe you would say I was just lucky. I say I was blessed. You see I believe that God cares about me and protects me. I am thankful for His watch care and protection. Even if trouble comes, He will be there to strengthen me.
When a mother saw a thunderstorm forming in mid-afternoon, she worried about her seven year-old daughter who would be walking the three blocks from school to home. Thinking the little girl would be frightened, the mother decided to pick her up at school; but the little girl has already walked a block or two. “I am so sorry; I was running a bit late. Are you OK?” “Yes,” replied the little girl. All the way here God’s been taking my picture!” If God were making your picture, what would He see? Joy or Anxiety; Trust or Worry; Smiles or Frowns; Hope or Despair.
FROM THE GOOD OLD DAYS - My junior and senior years in high school were spent in a Christian boarding school in southern Georgia. I loved the Christian environment. One of the things I enjoyed most was being in the high school chorus. Our group would often travel to various churches and other venues to perform. On one such trip we ran into snow and several of our members were shocked to discover that the pretty white snow (which they had never seen before) would be muddy underneath, ”I ruined my best shoes!” one girl cried. Our trips were not exactly comfortable – we traveled in an old school bus. But we were joyous and anticipated our trips with confidence and enthusiasm. As we pulled out of the parking lot of our school our battle cry was the old hymn, ”Take the Name of Jesus With You.”
THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO - “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10.
New Book! Tie a Blue Cord on Your Garment by Pat A. Bishop November 17 2020
We are super excited to announce that our book/Bible study, TIE A BLUE CORD ON YOUR GARMENT, is finally a reality.
Introductory Special: Save nearly $3.00! Get your pre-release copies now at $10.00 plus shipping and handling! – Order by 12/5/2020. (NOTE: The correct price will appear in the shopping cart. No discount code is needed.)
The early reviews have been awesome!
“This is such a timely topic for study in today’s world. A world where we are bombarded with a lack of humility and an intense presence of rudeness and selfishness.”
“Can’t wait for the official release…Great work!”
“I found the areas of discussion (in the study guide) to be timely and on point. The reading style is genuine but not intense. It encourages the reader to look within themselves…”
Whether you simply read the book, or decide to use it as a personal or small group Bible study (a 12-week study guide is included,) you will find Pat’s writing style to be unique and enjoyable. You are sure to come away with a clear and compelling understanding of what it takes to exercise humility and find the joy it will bring to one’s life.
Pray with us that it will bring glory to our God!
THROW IT IN THE TRASH April 27 2015
When Alex was about three years old, Poppa and I were her “babysitters” for the week-end. One evening we were trying to get her to eat her dinner. She obviously was not in the mood for what I had prepared and pushed her plate aside. Poppa asked her what she wanted him to do with her food. She quickly and very emphatically replied, “Throw it in the trash.”
That’s how it often is with you and I. Jesus taught us many lessons while He was here on earth and we simply just push them aside and “throw them in the trash.” Let’s look at three of those lessons:
BE GIVING AND CARING AND COMPASSIONATE - “When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick” – Matt. 14:14. “But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing…” Matthew 6:3
BE FORGIVING - “Peter came up to the Lord and asked, “How many times should I forgive someone who does something wrong to me? Is seven times enough?” Jesus answered: Not just seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Matthew 18:22-23
DON’T JUDGE OTHERS - “Don’t judge others, and God won’t judge you. God will be as hard on you as you are on others! He will treat you exactly as you treat them.” Luke 6:36
We live in a world where the primary focus of many is “self.” But we are commanded in God’s word (Luke 10:27) to:
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind. And love your neighbor as you love yourself.”
WHEN I DON’T WANT TO GO TO CHURCH April 27 2015
Over the past few weeks I have had several different people share with me that they find themselves with this feeling of ‘I don’t want to go to church.’ At times I’m sure many of us have gotten up on Sunday morning and echoed that same sentiment. We’ve had a bad week or we don’t feel our very best. There are those who simply just don’t believe we have to go to church. Sometimes we get disillusioned by things people in the church do or by the things that they say.
Let’s take a few minutes and look at what we are taught in God’s Word.
GOING TO CHURCH IS GOD’S COMMAND
“Some people have gotten out of the habit of meeting for worship, but we must not do that. We should keep on encouraging each other, especially since you know that the day of the Lord’s coming is getting closer.” Heb. 10:25 (CEV)
THE EARLY CHURCH WAS A FAMILY
They spent their time learning from the apostles, and they were like family to each other. They also broke bread and prayed together. Acts 2:42 (CEV)
THE SCRIPTURE TELLS IS IN I COR. 12 THAT WE ALL HAVE SPIRITUAL GIFTS AND WE SHOULD USE OUR GIFT(s) TO HELP KEEP HIS BODY, THE CHURCH, STRONG BECAUSE WE ARE A MEMBER OF THAT BODY.
“For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.” I Cor. 12:12
“You obey the law of Christ when you offer each other a helping hand.” Gal. 6:2 (CEV)
“Our bodies don’t have just one part. They have many parts. Suppose a foot says, “I’m not a hand, and so I’m not part of the body.” Wouldn’t the foot still belong to the body? Or suppose an ear says, “I’m not an eye, and so I’m not part of the body.” Wouldn’t the ear still belong to the body? If our bodies were only an eye, we couldn’t hear a thing. And if they were only an ear, we couldn’t smell a thing. But God has put all parts of our body together in the way that he decided is best. A body isn’t really a body, unless there is more than one part. It takes many parts to make a single body.” I Cor. 12:14-19
IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT ME. WHAT IF ANOTHER PART NEEDS ME? OR, I NEED ANOTHER PART?
“We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves.” Rom. 15:1
“Love is always supportive, loyal, hopeful, and trusting.” I Cor. 13:7
“Try your best to let God’s Spirit keep your hearts united.” Eph. 4:3 (CEV)
In an article I found by Wes McAdams, he says: “Some people feel like churches are full of hypocrites. Well, I wouldn’t say we’re all hypocrites, but we’re definitely imperfect. In fact, we’re down right messed up sometimes! We are often inconsistent, insensitive, and incompetent. But here is something you may not have considered: because we are so messed up, you can help us. You can help encourage us to be better. You can help us see the shortcomings to which we’ve become blind. You can help by not giving up on us; just as God hasn’t given up on you.”
Ralph Carter, Pastor, Brushy Creek Baptist Church, Taylors, SC said: “To be a hypocrite is simply to wear a mask. It is to admonish people to do one thing and then do another. Ever told your children to be patient but become impatient with them? We all have said one thing and done another. We absolve ourselves from guilt by pleading "but it's not what I normally do." And, for most, that's probably true. So how many times does a man have to act with hypocrisy to be a hypocrite? The church is filled with hypocrites because people make up the church. But if God divides us into two groups, the group most like Him and the group the most not like Him - we all end up in the second group.”
THEN WHY IS IT SO HARD
“Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy, the devil, is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.” I Peter 5: 8 (CEV)
“We are not fighting against humans. We are fighting against forces and authorities and against rulers of darkness and powers in the spiritual world.” Eph. 6:12 (CEV)
HOW DO I FIGHT AGAINST SATAN
“Finally, let the mighty strength of the Lord make you strong. Put on all the armor that God gives, so you can defend yourself against the devil’s tricks. We are not fighting against humans. We are fighting against forces and authorities and against rulers of darkness and powers in the spiritual world.” Eph. 6:10-11 (CEV)
“Always be glad because of the Lord! I will say it again: Be glad. Always be gentle with others. The Lord will soon be here. Don’t worry about anything, but pray about everything. With thankful hearts offer up your prayers and requests to God. Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can completely understand. And this peace will control the way you think and feel.” Phil. 4:3-7 (CEV)
“Finally, my friends, keep your minds on whatever is true, pure, right, holy, friendly, and proper. Don’t ever stop thinking about what is truly worthwhile and worthy of praise. You know the teachings I gave you, and you know what you heard me say and saw me do. So follow my example. And God, who gives peace, will be with you.” Phil. 4:8-9 (CEV)
WHAT’S THE CONCLUSION?
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the day drawing near. For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries” Heb. 10:23-27
HAVING A PLAN April 02 2015
Our great grandson, Andrew is not quite one year old. And, he is going through the “investigator stage.” He can’t walk yet, but he has no trouble going from room to room, from one thing to another, discovering what the world at grandmother’s house looks like and feels like. One of his favorite investigation sites is the connector box where Poppa has several electronic devices attached. It seems there are a series of blinking lights which really foster a lot of curiosity on Andrew’s part.
Fearing that he might get an electrical shock (or, at minimum, disconnect Poppa’s devices), his grandmother has tried picking him up and turning him in another direction, or diverting his attention to some other activity and still his fascination with those lights keeps him coming back. Her latest intervention included turning him around and ever so lightly tapping the top of his hand while telling him, “No, No.” Evidently at some point she had also pointed her finger at him as well. Well, Mr. Andrew looks up at her with this really big smile on his face and points his finger back at her as if she was playing a game with him. He just didn’t get the message.
I think there is a very valuable lesson in Andrew’s story. Not for Andrew because he will get the message as time goes on; but for us. Sometimes we are so involved with our day to day activities that we fail to take into consideration our long terms goals and objectives for this life and for eternity. We tend to let one day drift into another without much thought about the potential impact on our future. What kind of values do I want my children to have? Am I doing those things which have eternal value? Am I spending time and money that I am really going to need in the future in terms of realizing my goals and objectives? Am I exercising the personal discipline that is required? Are my goals and objectives in line with spiritual precepts and commands?
“Teach your children right from wrong, and when they are grown they will still do right.” Prov. 22:5 (cev)
“The plans of the diligent lead surely to plenty, but those of everyone who is hasty, surely to poverty.” Prov. 21:6 (nkjv)
“Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise.” Prov. 6:6 (nkjv)
“He who gathers in summer is a wise son; He who sleeps in harvest is a son who causes shame.” Prov. 10:5 (nkjv)
“And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” John 17:3 (nkjv)
NOT HAVING A PLAN IS A PLAN TO FAIL.
GET ALL EXCITED April 02 2015
Aiden, who is 5 years old and one of our precious great grandsons, recently heard a song which he really liked. So much so that when he was visiting with his grandmother recently and “his’ song came on the radio, he said,
“Guys, guys! This is my new favorite song! You HAVE to listen to it and you HAVE to like it.”
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we loved Jesus so much that we would be as excited as Aiden was and we would want everyone to listen and “like” it.
I’m reminded of something that John Piper says in his book, “Don’t Waste Your Life” – “Whenever something is of tremendous value to you, and you cherish its beauty or power or uniqueness, you want to draw others’ attention to it and waken in them the same joy.”
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” Romans 1:16 (kjv)
“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15 (kjv)
“Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.” Habakkuk 3:18 (kjv)
“That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.” – Psalm 26:7 (kjv)
This world needs true joy and everlasting hope!
ARE YOU SHARING YOUR JOY IN JESUS?
From “Memos from Nanna” by Pat A. BishopLearn more - Click here
What do happiness, problem-solving, dealing with angry people, and gaining wisdom have in common? None of us are exempt from something that seems to be a way of life for many people. In the Bible study book, “God’s WORDS Are Something Special” (released by Courier publishing in July, 2014 and available at www.SomethingSpecialMinistries.com), I call it the “Me. Myself and I” syndrome. In fact, many times we see this syndrome, not just in others, but also in ourselves. I want – I need – I got to have – If I don’t look out for number one, who is – I don’t care – After me you’re first – He can’t talk that way to me – Who does she think she is – and etc. etc…………. Have you ever been on the receiving end of those kind of comments? Often we find that we are the person making those kind of statements. When someone has the mindset of “Me, Myself and I” they reflect that attitude in how they treat other people as well.
I have a really precious friend, Lu. Lu is a very petite lady, wears, maybe, a size five dress. She and her husband are two of the sweetest and most loving people you will ever meet. I’m not sure how old Lu is, but I suspect she is not far from being 90 years. She has a heart and respiratory condition which requires that she carry with her a portable oxygen system. During a recent visit she was telling me that she probably wasn’t going to be able to come to church again. I immediately responded, “I can understand that your oxygen machine must be difficult for you to manage.” “I don’t have a problem with that,” she replied. “It’s just that I am afraid that someone will knock me down.” I began to understand her thinking. While the portico of our church building is rather sizable, it is also very crowded as people come and go into the sanctuary and to and from our educational wing. “The children are sometimes not very considerate,” I responded. “It’s not the children, it’s the adults. They are in such a rush that I feel I might get run over.”
What do happiness, problem-solving, dealing with angry people and gaining wisdom have in common? How does Ms. Lu’s story fit into our subject matter? The answer is in the word: Gentleness. Learn more –Proverbs 12:20 - Titus 3:2 - Proverbs 25:15 - Proverbs 15:1 – James 3:17.
GENTLENESS – HUMILITY – PATIENCE - PERSPECTIVE July 11 2014 2 Comments
When one of our grandsons was not quite three years old he was “spending the night” with Nanna and Poppa. The time came when he needed to use the bathroom and Poppa had not yet come home from work. So, I said to him, “I’ll take you.” “No, Nanna, no “gurls” allowed. So I’m waiting in the hall within ear shot and after an appropriate period of time, I hear him calling loudly, “Nanna, Nanna!” I rushed in thinking he must have encountered a problem. When I entered the bathroom he had slid off the seat and was standing beside the toilet pulling on the handle that flushes the toilet. “Nan, me thinks it needs a battery.” From his perspective, if it wouldn’t work, it needed a battery.
I’ve thought about that a lot over the years. We all tend to see things from our own perspective, our own point of view depending on the circumstances of our life, depending on the life lessons we have encountered. Those differing points of view often cause conflicts and misunderstandings. Many times what one person says, and what the other person hears, are two entirely different things. We all need to work hard at trying to understand the other person’s point of view – to see things from their perspective. We must learn to be patient with each other. We must exercise humility and gentleness, remembering that God tells us to love others as ourselves.
In Phillipians 2:2, learn more.
Pat A. Bishop
A New Website & Our First Product Release! June 28 2014
We are so pleased to launch our new website, www.SomethingSpecialMinistries.com, along with the release of our first product, "God's Words Are Something Special," by Pat A. Bishop. We hope you enjoy your visit! Please check back regularly, as we have many more exciting Christian study guides, Bible-based publications, and inspirational items coming soon.