Wisdom for Life, Part 6, Being Wise About Conflict, July 29, 2012

Wisdom for Life, Part 6 – Being Wise About Conflict
Prov. 10:17 NKJV, NLT, Prov. 27:5-6 NLT, NKJV
– every relationship we have is vulnerable to attack, to break apart the relationship
Ps. 133:1 “How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony!”
– Three different ways people deal wtih conflict:
1. some avoid and withdraw
2. some tend to explode after they have stewed & stewed and finally boil over
3. some people thrive on conflict
– healthy relationships are not absent of conflicts but they have the ability to resolve conflict in a positive and healthy way
– 6 ingredients to wising up about conflict
1. decide to love (Prov. 10:12 NIV, 1 Peter 4:8)
  – Jesus sasy they’ll know they’re Christians by their love
2. forgiving offenses (Prov. 19:11 NIV) – we need to take God seriously, but not take ourselves seriously.
  – forgiveness is simply the choice to not hold onto an offense. A refusal to forgive a person is unwise because it opens our lives to satanic power and chokes off God’s grace. When we refuse to forgive, the person’s offense keeps victimizing us again and again, because we dwell on it continually it ends up poisoning our lives with bitterness.
3. open yourself (Prov. 27:5-6) – direct confrontation is always better than unexpressed love
  – we all need to open ourselves up to correction because we all have blind spots
4. admitting our role (Prov. 28:13 NIV) – my relationhship with people is more important than being right and definitely more important than the offense
5. keeping anger in check (Prov. 29:22 NIV, Eph. 4:26)
6. correct carefully (Prov. 9:7-9 NIV)
– we need to wise up about conflict in our lives. We do this by deciding to love, forgiving offenses against us, opening ourselves to correction, admitting where we’ve been wrong, keeping our anger under control, and only then offering correction carefully.

The Next Step, Pastor Randy Reed, July 22, 2012

2 Chr. 8:16, Ps. 37:23-24
– no matter your past, there’s alwyas a next step- every race has a next step, each athlete took steps just to gewt to the olympics.
Ezekial 47: 1-9 (MSG) – wherever you are in your walk with God, there is always a next step
– observations:
1. ankle deep – not a huge commitment, starts shallow, purposes aren’t even revealed until you move deeper
2. knee deep – transitional phase, start making a total commitment
3. waist deep – volunteer, faithful tigher
  – Acts 16:1-3 – Timothy getting circumsized is a commitment – no turning back
  – John 3:30 – we decrease, God increases
4. total immersion in God – where you’re trusting AGod to take you where He wants you to go
4 steps:
Salvation (2 Tim. 3:14-15)
Trust (Prov. 3:5)
Expectation (Matt. 24:34) raise your level of expe3ctation, expect your destiny to be fulfilled
Pursue (Matt. 6:33, Ps. 55:16-17)
– don’t let your past paralyze your present and don’t let your present dictate your future
– stop hiding behind someon else’s salvation

Do You Understand?, Pastor Randy Reed July 15, 2012

– story of a young telegraph operator
– things of interest about this story:
  – this young man was not the FIRST one there.
  – there were probably men with higher qualifications.
  – there may have been men who were better dressed.
  – maybe they were comparing themselves among themselves, and touting their own qualifications.
  – maybe each one was telling the other why he deserved the job.
  – maybe they were arguing about who was right and who was wrong for the position.
Mark 8:13-18 (NKJV), Mark 8:16-19 (The Message)
– a few things you shold know – we are blessed to have Pastor Phillip and Susan.
– How to honor and bless your pastor (1 Tim. 5:17-18)
  1. do the basics consistently – give gifts without strings
  – time – the most expensive thing on earth
    – shows you place value when you spend time at church
    – when you’re present at church physically, be present mentally as well
  – talent – the most unused thing on earth
    – get engaged with what God is doing here
  – treasure – the most mis-used thing on earth
    – where your treasure is, there your heart is also (Matt. 6:21)
  2. let go of the unrealistic expectations
  – bless pastors by allowing them to spend time with their own families
  3. love the pastor’s wife – give her the gift of kind words and the freedom to flourish in the church
  4. don’t assume other people are encouraging their pastor.
  – don’t forget that direct communication is more meaningful than posting on Facebook or Twitter.
  5. keep studying how best to bless your pastor

Change, Dr. Terry Crist, July 8, 2012

– the challenge of accepting change when change just doesn’t feel natural
Matt 9:14-17 – Jesus challenged the people of the time to change, but they resisted
Matt. 21:23 – the people challenged Jesus’ authority to make change
– the hope of our future generations rests on our ability to become agents of change in our world
– change for the sake of following Jesus
1. Change is emotional (Matt. 9:15)
  – there’s nothing like change to stir up the emotions of people and get their attention
  – God uses change to awaken us to new opportunities in life
  – sometimes it takes discipline to handle the change in our life
2. Change is personal (Matt. 9:16)
  – clothing is personal
  – change leads to transformation
  – change changes us
  – change can be powerful if we find Jesus in teh change
  – to resist change is to resist growth
3. Change is inevitable (Isa. 42:8-9)
  – before change comes, God reminds me who Hes is and conditions me for the change
– Three essential attitudes:
  1. blessed are the flexible for they shall not break
  2. blessed are the forgetful for they will not get stuck (Phil. 3:13-14)
  3. blessed are the faithful for they will be rewarded (Prov. 28:20)
  – there is a harvest coming
– follow Jesus through change and He will provide the harvest
– don’t be afraid to move the couch because new realities rarely fit old constraints

Wisdom for Life, Part 5, Keeping Your Spirit Right, July 1, 2012

Keeping Your Spirit Right
Prov. 16:32,17:22,18:4,20:27,Eph. 4:17-32
1. Have a spirit that is up – moving, energized, talking to God (2 Tim. 1:7)
  – don’t receive fear that people are spreading
  – a broken spirit weighs you down
2. Have a spirit of faith (Mark 11:22)
  – have faith in God
  – 2 Cor. 4:13 – you and I have the same spirit of faith as those before us: David, John Wesley, Billy Graham, etc.
3. Have a spirit of hope and vision (Heb. 11:1 NKJV, NLT)
4. Have a spirit of renewal (Col. 3:2)
  – daily spend time with God and be renewed
5. Have a spirit of a finisher (John 4:34, 2 Tim. 4:7)
  – finish strong, stay in the battle until you finish
Factors that influence your spirit:
1. what you read
2. what and who you listen to
3. who you hang with
4. who and what you are filled with
– praying in the Spirit edifies and builds us up; it keeps us in the love of God. It keeps our spirit conected to the Holy Spirit.
– Jesus promised that out of our belly shall flow the rivers of living water (John 7:38)