Don’t quit on yourself. Keep going. Your body wants to give up, but your mind is stronger. Your mind and your heart keep you going as you push on through the hurt and the pain. It’s going to hurt, but only for a little while. After it’s done, your muscles will recover and you will be stronger than you were before. It will be more than worth everything that you put into it.
Anyone who has ever worked out hard, or has participated in any kind of athletic race – no matter their fitness level – has been told and told themselves any or all of these things. Myself included. I am constantly reminding myself of what I’m working for when the hurt starts to come during a workout. A race is never against the other competitors. You are racing more against yourself – trying to push through the pain, going for a new PR, wanting that finish and experience.
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“…That God had prepared the people: for the thing was done suddenly.”
– 2 Chronicles 29:36
One of the ways that God likes to work in our lives is through what I like to refer to as “suddenlies”. These are the times where you’ve been praying and God begins to move so quickly that it takes you by complete surprise and you find yourself barely able to hold on. You begin fully trusting in Him to lead the way and guide your steps. This is what way He likes it be, and sometimes we can be so independent that this is the only way that He can take full control. This is the only way to get us to fully commit ourselves to Him.
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There is nothing like the love of God for His children. Although we are called to, it is so hard to replicate here on earth. We live in a fallen world, but God has already won the battle and the war. However, the enemy still rules the earth for now, and we still need to fight our battle. Our weapon: love. We know love because He first loved us. He sent His one and only Son as a spotless lamb of sacrifice so that we could be reconciled with Him. That is the greatest kind of love – to lay down your life for the ones that you love. Jesus did that for us.
We are called to live out that love. When we receive the greatest love from God we are to turn around and give that love away to everyone else. By giving away love, we are filled again and able to receive more, which in turn allows us to give away even more love.
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While driving home work yesterday I experienced a moment where I was confronted with two choices. I could either get mad and take it to the extreme, or I could let it go and give grace.
I was coming up to a red light in the right lane. In the left lane were two Safelite Glass work vans. As I was coming up, braking up the light, one of the vans did a last second signal to get over next to his coworker. He didn’t see me and it was too late for me to stop. He turned over and his bumper caught the side of my car. I heard the hit as I came to a stop. It wasn’t loud. We both got out and I didn’t see any damage at first. We were on an overpass bridge so we decided to pull up a little further in order to get out of traffic.
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How do you respond when those whom you love, and who are supposed to love you, attack your faith?
This question was recently presented before me by an old friend from when I lived in New York. He asked this to me, and knowing some of his family background and what he has been through, I knew exactly what he meant, despite not talking for several years. It’s a delicate question, regardless of the situations behind it. I want to answer it the right way, and I told him as much. I’ve spent a couple days praying about my response. The best way I know to speak is through my writing. This is an open letter to my friend and to anyone else who may be going through a similar situation.
Continue reading “An Open Letter To A Friend”