It seems like we spend the majority of our week working for someone else; trying to do the best job we can to earn their praises; bringing money into our household to pay the rent, feed our families and just get by in this world.
I think this pretty much sums-up most of us and what we do every day but, have you ever really just sat down and wondered why you’re here? Is this our only purpose in life? Or, better yet, why God put you in this place?
Truthfully, and from the word of God, we can see this is not what our destiny is in life. We’re different from most. We are children of God; brothers and sisters in Christ; and we understand the power of The Holy Spirit.
So then, what is our purpose?
Ephesians 2:10 – “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
Yes, this is what we need to remember every morning as we give thanks to God for another day and thank Him for all the blessings we’ve received and all that are to come.
How can we do this? How can we be different from all the rest; maintain a positive attitude; do what we need to do as best we can… and still maintain a good and loving relationship with our Lord?
Do Not Conform
Romans 12:2 – “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
I think we spend far too much time doing just this… being conformed to this world! We spend most of our lives doing what society tells us to do. I think it’s time for all of us to ask God, “Lord, help me away from the ways of this world!”
Renewal of Your Mind
So, how can we renew our minds? How can we learn to start thinking differently and separate ourselves from what this world has told us we should be like?
I know this is a very difficult thing to do. We’re surrounded by people (friends, family, co-workers etc.) that haven’t learned to do this themselves so how, by doing as everyone else is doing, can we renew our minds and become God’s handiwork as, we know we should?
I did some of my own “soul-searching” and found these few little things that can, most certainly, help.
- Turn off the TV – Everything we see today on TV typically has negative content. We see our government falling apart as they argue more among themselves about their parties than they do about the laws that should be protecting us and providing us a better means of living.
- Talk to your Family – We just don’t do enough of this these days… and when we do, it usually involves griping and complaining about the life around us.
Instead of doing this, try speaking to your family about good things… another day together, more accomplishments instead of failures and, a big one, I Love You and I am glad you’re in my life!
- Take a break from Facebook – Oh, here’s a BIG one! Facebook is addicting, don’t you think? How many of you could go through an entire day, or better yet, an entire week without scrolling through your Facebook?
Try it… see what happens. See if it makes you feel any different or, even better, less stressed and more at ease.
- Put down your Cellphone – Okay, I know that’s kind of similar to the Facebook thing but, nonetheless, we’re on it all day long. We text, we wait and we text again. Put it down! Talk to one another face-to-face. If you don’t get more out of that than texting, I think its time to re-think your priorities in life.
- Pick-up your Bible – I know, I know… how many times are you going to tell us to do this Pastor Woody?! Well, I’m going to do it over and over again until you finally realize the power of this simple little task.
Read your Bible… better yet, read it with your family; read it with your friends. Share each verse and discuss what you believe the meaning to be and how it pertains to your life
A Positive Attitude
Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”
I know this is another difficult one for us these days. As I just mentioned, we’re surrounded by bad news. This world beats down on us every day! So, how can we maintain a positive attitude while everything around us is so negative?
- At Work – Despite the challenges at work, try to be the “different one.” Try being the one with a positive attitude. Come to work with a smile and greet your co-workers with positivity.
If you have someone that works for you, be kind… give praise loudly where praise is due. Make them feel important as you would like the same.
- With Friends – How many times, when we get together with friend, do we talk about our “bad days?” Doesn’t this bring you down even lower than you already feel? Try and be the “positive one.” Make people happy to see you walk into the room. People have enough of their own problems… they don’t need, or want, to share yours.
- At Home – Once again, this should be your number one priority. If you’ve had a bad day, leave it at work! Bring positivity into your home like God showers you with His grace every day!
Greet your family with open-arms, a warm smile and a hug, and make them ever-so happy to see you walk through that door.
Make people say, “Oh, he’s got the spirit of God in him!”
Proverbs 17:22 – “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
Now that one is a very true statement from Solomon. If you’re a cheerful person, you will bring smiles to others; you will brighten their day and you will be the positive influence in their lives instead of bringing them more negativity and “drying-up their bones!”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 – “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
The Apostle Paul challenges us here again. Its hard to rejoice today isn’t it? Yes, but I think you’ll find if you begin “rejoicing always,” you will also begin to understand more clearly what his words to the church in Thessalonica are all about.
“This is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” This is the way God would have us live! Despite our trials and tribulations, give thanks! Praise God every day for, once again, we are His handiwork and we need to do these good works “which God prepared in advance for us to do!”
Give praise always. In hardship; in despair; in sickness… give thanks and praise God always… and begin to feel The Holy Spirit fill you with God’s grace as all of these things begin to fade into the background!
Here is Some Help
Okay, here’s some shocking news for you. Guess what? I’m not always that positive either! Yes, I have those same “down-days” that all of you do despite my close relationship with God.
The only difference there may be between us is I do, ever-so earnestly, make every effort to do as God has told me to do.
Allow me to share just a few with you this morning.
- Thanks for the Challenge – Yes, I face the same challenges that we all do. The difference is, I thank God for His testing and can’t wait to see how He is going to help me get through them.
- Out of the Traffic – When the traffic starts getting bad, what do most of you do? Cuss, exhibit road-rage and pound your fist on the steering wheel?
I pull off the road, sit on a curb and watch the Sun. I stare at the clouds and think about the wonder of God. This brings great peace to me and calms my soul down for the rest of my journey.
- Look-up towards Heaven – When the rains come, as bikers, we don’t necessarily look forward to it… and its not we’re afraid of the rain but, instead, the “craziness” around us. Honestly, I get frightened when it rains.
But, once again, I pull off the road. I stare up at the rain falling, let it run down my face, and feel the peace of my God cleansing me. When I’m finished, I am at peace and can safely continue my trip.
- Pray, Always! – This one’s a “no-brainer” for me. I Love my God; I Love Jesus Christ; and I Love The Holy Spirit so, every day and always… I pray!
Every day is a new day. Every day is God-given and we should be thankful. Every day we should get-up, give thanks to God and plan on making an even better day than yesterday.
Psalm 119:147 – “I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word.”
We shouldn’t get-up and say, “Oh great, I have to go to work.” Instead, we should get-up and say, “Thank you Lord, I get to go to work!”
It sounds a lot harder than it actually is. Give it a try! Get-up early and talk to God… let Him plan your day and KNOW it will be a better one.
Consider all of those that don’t have the blessing that you do in your relationship with God, Christ and The Holy Spirit. Help someone to start the journey that you have chosen. Help make their lives a little better.
Here is something else… if you don’t mind, please take a moment and repeat what I am about to say. Close your eyes tightly, as if you’re giving it your all, raise your hand to the Heavens and say with me…
- Jesus, I believe in You!
- Jesus, I belong to You!
- Jesus, You are the reason that I live!
- Jesus, I put all that I have in Your hands!
- Walk with me Lord, walk beside me always!
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We have just gone through some of the ways we might be able to “renew our minds” and do the “handiwork” God intends us to do. Perhaps some of the things I’ve said will help. Maybe, you have methods of your own you might like to share with us today. If so, please feel free to speak-up and let us know.
Remember, we are God’s “handiwork” and we have a purpose to fulfil. Take to this task every day! Ask God for His help; prayer to Jesus and ask Him to walk the journey with you; try and fill yourselves with The Holy Spirit and feel, ever-so-deeply, the power He puts into your heart and soul.
Be God’s child! Be a brother or sister to Christ and The Holy Spirit. Do the good works and let the rest of the world know who you are by bringing God’s positive works into all that you do!
Make others feel the Glory of our God within you!
Go with God; be good to one another; always stay humble; always be kind… God Bless (Amen)