Friday, June 23, 2017

IS ENVY AN OLD FRIEND OR A BEATEN ENEMY


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“A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones.” (Proverbs 14:30)

We have all learned the best unlearned art of envy and painted some pretty terrible pictures under its direction and thats for sure.

And when we have done so we have been the fool trying to wear a crown when it was actually a dunce cap.

There was a farm not far from where I had one of my first pastorates and on this farm they had a donkey; and one day it got me to thinking about the donkey that carried Jesus into Jerusalem and whether or not he may have been envious about all the crowd praising Jesus.  “After all,” he may have thought, “I am the one carrying him.  I certainly deserve some praise.”

And I looked down at the Bible on the corner of my desk and I thought of all the examples of envy just beneath its cover.  Cain and Abel and envy causing a murder.  With Christ and the Chief Priest and envy causing a crucifixion.

And in the midst of the sadness my thinking caused I began to give thanks for two solutions for solving the sickness of envy.

Keep your mouth shut Neil.  I learned that the hard way and I am still learning but it is true.  Don’t put other people down as a way of lifting myself up.

And, yes, get to know the person I may have some envy toward, better. 

Train myself to admire a trait or talent they have that I don’t rather make myself ill because I don’t have them.

Envy really isn’t one of my problems and it may well not be one of yours…but envy is a hoverer…hovering and hovering and hovering just waiting for its chance.

And I looked at the corner of the table and put my hand on the Bible and held it there for it also taught to me love my neighbor as myself, which after all is a pretty good antidote for envy…now isn’t it.

TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)

Some recent topic titles are:ONE LOG ON A FIRE, TWO JOLLY GREEN GIANTS; LOVE AND FORGIVENESS, WISDOM IS
 
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Thursday, June 22, 2017

BE UNCOMPROMISINGLY KIND. UNREMITTIONGLY LOVING


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Do something very special for yourself, for your community, for your church, for whomever in the human race that is watching you.  Be uncompromisingly kind.  Unremittingly loving. 

When you feel an attack of pettiness coming on run from it as fast you can. 

You don’t like someone?  You don’t like what they do or say?  Have you ever stopped to think that your negative response makes a two-way street that is no fun for either of you to travel. 

 It is easy to fuss and fume because others do not follow your particular set of rules for proper behavior, but it is counterproductive.  It messes up a morning and sometimes a day or an entire relationship.  Meanwhile you may not be following the set of rules for proper behavior that the others set have for you. 
 
In short, cool it.  Repeat the 13th chapter of First Corinthians over and over and over and over again until it is coming out your ears.  No, better still, until it is making you act like the Christian you say you are.

TO VISIT T Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)

Some recent topic titles are:ONE LOG ON A FIRE, TWO JOLLY GREEN GIANTS; LOVE AND FORGIVENESS, WISDOM IS
 
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To view his One Man Dramas on film (see by millions, live and on film and on video)(Martin Luther, Ben Franklin, Charles Wesley, Abraham Lincoln)

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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

PLANT THESE SEED THOUGHTS AND SEE WHAT YOU HARVEST


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Life is a grain of sand in all the oceans of eternity.

Unless God is the conductor on your streetcar you are riding on a folly-trolly.

It is unlikely there’ll be a reduction in the wages of sin.

Forbidden fruit creates many jams.

People are like tea bags—you have to put them in hot water before you know how strong they are.

Superior people talk about ideas; average people talk about things; little people talk about other people.

It is better to swallow your pride than to have to eat angry words.

What is morally wrong cannot be economically right.

Character is what a person is when on vacation.

You won’t get dizzy doing good turns.

TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)

Some recent topic titles are:ONE LOG ON A FIRE, TWO JOLLY GREEN GIANTS; LOVE AND FORGIVENESS, WISDOM IS
 
CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING URL
 

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To view his One Man Dramas on film (see by millions, live and on film and on video)(Martin Luther, Ben Franklin, Charles Wesley, Abraham Lincoln)
 
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

HOW TO BE A BETTER PERSON


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           If you had carried through with every promise you ever made, every dream you ever had, every truth you understood; what kind of a person would you be today?  Would it have made any difference, that mistake you could have rectified but didn’t?  That fear you could have tried to overcome but passed the opportunity by? 

There are a tremendous number of people who, if you were to ask them if they ever consider this, would reply that they eating, drinking  and being merry is their perfect and persistent choose. 

The mind?  Ask some folk refuse to think, claiming it makes their head hurt.  The very thought gives them a headache.  Yet what we think about, what we give ourselves to, whether or not we accept responsibility for helping others or are only concerned with helping ourselves, these are life changing or life threatening decisions.  They really are.

The body?  It may be what we only temporarily inhabit, but it needs our constant attention.  Feed it poorly, exercise it little and it will attack you.  Everyone knows that if you do not exercise the muscles grow weaker and that if you do exercise them they grow stronger, but not everyone works at it..
 
There is an old joke about exercise that really isn’t funny.  “If I lie down and close my eyes maybe the thought will go away, or better still not come at all.”

There is an old adage - life is a grindstone, it either grinds you down or polishes you up.  It depends on the stuff you are made of.

And there is an old truth.  We are shaped by our friends so be careful who we chose to emulate.   And think before you speak because if you are not careful you will but become living proof that fools never know when to shut up.

Therefore, chose love as a way of living.  Hate is a ragged wound that rips and tears at the interior of your being and wrecks a terrible personal kind of havoc.

Be patient with others when they will not follow your every lead or agree with your every thought.  They are, after all, like you individual who appreciate being treated as such.

TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)

Some recent topic titles are:ONE LOG ON A FIRE, TWO JOLLY GREEN GIANTS; LOVE AND FORGIVENESS, WISDOM IS
 
CLICK ON THE FOLLOWING URL
 

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To view his One Man Dramas on film (see by millions, live and on film and on video)(Martin Luther, Ben Franklin, Charles Wesley, Abraham Lincoln)

 
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Monday, June 19, 2017

STEWARDSHIP


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 There are over 600 stories and commentaries on this blog. It is added to daily.
 
Mark Twain told me to he told the following story;  “I once heard a preacher who was a powerful speaker, and in no time at all he convinced me I should give every cent I had.  Then he kept on talking, and after twenty minutes I decided to keep the bills and give only change.  After ten more minutes I decided to give nothing at all.  Forty-five minutes later when he quit and the plate was passed….. I stole two dollars out of the plate for pure spite.”

When it comes to giving and keeping money most everyone is conflicted; caught been selfishness and selflessness.  Compassion for the poor and compassion for the state of their own personal income.,

Dropping a dollar in the slumped homeless man’s lap.  Pledging and then sometimes not completing the pledge with real money.

One day realizing that one of God’s greatest gifts is the ongoing sincere heartfelt desire to give.

When we die we do not want to be remembered as a “thief.”

We want to be remembered as one whose giving was so consistent it became for us an act of worship.

We want to be remembered as the kind of person who plants shade trees we know we will sit beneath.

Only a fool wants to be like the Dead Sea; receiving but never giving.

It is a fact, “Few men are ruined by giving,”


TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)

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To view his One Man Dramas on film (see by millions, live and on film and on video)(Martin Luther, Ben Franklin, Charles Wesley, Abraham Lincoln)
 

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Sunday, June 18, 2017

EVANGELISM – BREAKTHROUGH OR BREAKDOWN?


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            Have you ever noticed that evangelism never was a great issue in the New Testament?  You never read about Apostles exhorting, scolding, planning and organizing evangelistic programs.  No 10 point follow through. No. ?  The early church had no evangelistic planning because so many of its members had a propensity for not shutting up.  Indeed, they ran around opening their mouths so often about Jesus that many were eaten up by the mouths of lions. 

In the Apostolic church, because so many were on fire for their faith, evangelism was somehow assumed.  Which brings us back to our question time again - are you on fire for your faith?  Or at least a glowworm?  Or are you just comfortably, silently satisfied?

It was 1948 when Gulag Irkutsk, a Christian believer in Siberia, received a 25-year sentence.  After refusing to work on the Sabbath, he was ordered to stand in a 3 x 4 foot cell for 10 days with only water for nourishment. 

For a year Irkutsk went through the same routine; in confinement for 10 days and out for four days.  After a year, a general came to inspect the prison camp and found Irkutsk in solitary confinement.  When the general inquired about his confinement, the prisoner explained about the Sabbath.  “I am a believer in God.  A sign of my loyalty to Him is to rest on the Sabbath.  However, I am prepared to work twice as much the day before in order to have the Sabbath off.”

The general took him at his word and Irkutsk was ordered to carry enough water for the 1,000 prisoners – filling the reservoir by transporting well water.  Prison officials provided him with an ox, and for 10 years he and that ox followed the same routine of working twice as fast the day before and resting on the Sabbath.

Later Irkutsk was released for his outstanding work record, but the ox remained and assisted another prisoner as he transported water.  When the first Sabbath came, that ox lay quietly chewing his cud.  Nothing would move the beast – neither shouting, pulling, threatening nor beating.  Every Sabbath the same drama happened.  Finally the exasperated jailer told the prisoner, “You will never change the ox’s behavior.

The Sabbathkeeper has made the ox into a Sabbathkeeper.  And Sabbathkeepers are very, very stubborn!”

Jesus was not crucified in an air conditioned church but rather on a hot humid hill.  His death took place where life and death came to meet, at the crossroads so to speak.  And this is where evangelism has to take place, not in talking places but living places.

                        A new, young Christian, for sometimes old-time-Christians lose their zeal… a new, young Christian once pressed his cause for Christ with a bit too much fervor.  The man to whom he was speaking finally said, “Why don’t you just mind your own business?”  The young layman then more gently replied, “Perhaps I did come across too strong, but you see, ever since I became a Christian, you are my business.”

            How should you talk about Christ?  Well, certainly don’t believe that spiritual and stuffy are soul mates.  Don’t talk about Him in such a way that a Theological library is needed to understand what you just said.  Most likely, many you might talk to may be suffering from callouses on the soul.  So when you talk about Christ to the man on the street, remember K.I.S.S. - Keep It Simple Stupid.

            Many claim they would evangelize, but they don’t know how. 

The last movie you became enthused about, did you have to take a communications course before you told someone about it?  Does it take a Doctorate in Evangelism to say, “Christ is my Savior” or “I  need the church and so do you, my friend?” Or if you really can’t easily share such phrases, then offer something like, “Our preacher is preaching on…whatever he is preaching on…. This is an invite.” Why is it people have no problem spreading gossip, but so much trouble spreading God?

            Perhaps the church must once again earn its right to speak.  Maybe it needs to be different - not in the way that repels, but in a way that attracts.  Christ preached under-standing, but there is no understanding when church members move from church to church because of misunder-standings.  Or stay together but fuss and fume in a most unholy alliance. 

Mahatma Gandhi once said, “I could have believed in Christ if it hadn’t been for the people in my land who claimed to be His followers.”  Yes, perhaps the church has to keep earning the right to speak.

Our Christian faith does not just give us noble precepts.  It defines God.  When I quote Jesus’ words of love, describe His miracles, affirm His reincarnation, I have drawn an earthly picture of a heavenly Creator.  When I talk about death and accept the fact of the Resurrection, I have not just said “yes” to a Reality, I am on the way to the absorption of a Power.

            There is no such thing as an objective outlook toward life, but there is a Christian one.  Anyone can stand on a hill, but when that hill is Golgotha it becomes more than just another view.  It becomes a way of life. Because of what we find to believe there, we begin to make some outlandish statements and develop some strange and wonderful attitudes and beliefs. 


TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of plusses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)
 
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Saturday, June 17, 2017

A GOOD DESTINY IS OPPORTUNITY WITH A SMILE ON ITS FACE


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In the year 1880, a homeless little Chinese boy wandered the docks of Shanghai. When no one was looking he smuggled himself aboard an American vessel loading cargo. For days he hid in a drain where garbage and rubbish were daily dumped. For days he fought the rats for the stinking scraps that were thrown through the opening above him.

Finally, however, it became too much even for his determination so he climbed out of his hiding place and was discovered. It was the custom in those days to throw stowaways overboard with neither sympathy nor ceremony. But the captain of the ship, a man by the name of Charles Jones, was strangely drawn to this indomitable spirit.

So he kept the boy with him for the remainder of the voyage and fed him back to some semblance of health. When the boat docked at Wilmington, North Carolina, he turned the boy over to the minister of the church he attended when in port.

The minister befriended this tiny package of humanity and named him Charlie, after the captain who had saved him. Raised in the minister's home, when Charlie grew older he went away to Trinity College (now Duke University). Then he entered a theological seminary from which he graduated and was ordained.

Returning to China, he married a Chinese girl and set up a home out of which came six children. One daughter became the wife of the Minister of Finance; another daughter became the wife of Sun Yat-sen, founder of the Chinese Republic; and the third daughter became the wife of Chiang Kai-shek. One son became the founder of the Bank of China; another son became the Collector of customs of Chinese ports; and the third son became the manager of the export-import business of China. So the Soong dynasty was founded.
 
If there is a lesson here it can be learned from a sea captain who when he first went to sea never knew how a simple act of love and kindness would change the world. And, yes what opportunity awaits each of us around the next bend in the road. And will we take it or pass it by, never to know what might have been.

TO VISIT Neil’s other blog WYRICK’S WRITING (A variety of serializations; a novel, a 2nd book Sixty Plus and not Holding (How to get by in life with a host of pluses no matter what your age) on Sunday and Tuesday and Thursday varying subjects) (3 times a week added to)
 
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To view his One Man Dramas on film (see by millions, live and on film and on video)(Martin Luther, Ben Franklin, Charles Wesley, Abraham Lincoln)

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