For the most part I am guilty of writing with a theological mindset of teaching. This is certainly not to say that it doesn’t come from a place of my own struggles. That is evident for anybody who knows me and has read any of my previous posts. I have been through a lot and the only constant in any of it is my faith. I have therefore tried to write about topics close to me and encourage anyone reading them from my own experience.
What I really mean by the above is I get carried away writing, it become well constructed metaphors and thoroughly researched scriptures and topics. Not deeply personal.
Today I want to share something different. Today I want to openly share me. My heart, my inner most thoughts, my doubts and what I deal with daily. It starts by me telling you a bit about me. Who I am, where I come from and where I plan on going.
My name is Timothy Benjamin Cohen, yes sounds quite proper and very biblical. I guess my name gives clues to my upbringing. Both my parents are strong believers and I was brought up in church. My father was even a pastor for a number of years and it is true, that for some reason pastors kids tend to become quite naughty and stretch the limits. I was no different. Insolent, rebellious and completely self centered as if the world was created exclusively for my happiness. I had a form of faith and never ever doubted that any of the stories I heard growing up were true but that’s as far as it went. I didn’t live like I truly believed any of it. That all changed whilst backpacking for a few years. I came to know God personally. Far away from home and my upbringing. In the process I met Sarah who is now my wife of 6 years.
Our marriage, although dedicated wholeheartedly to God was much like our lives. Full of potential and sparks of purpose and love for Him. But I, like so many others, fell into the trap of complacency and was clinging on to tightly to the reins of our lives. It was if I was saying to God I was cool, thanks for being my saviour and my Father but in day to day life I got this. Before you know it the only time I was giving God was on Sunday mornings. That was until a tempting opportunity developed for us to have a stand for our new business at a market on Sundays. Justifications were a plenty and we even did art pieces professing and sharing our faith. Whilst the stand had evidence of our faith, my life in particular, started showing less and less. My wife had to return to England unexpectedly and the door was left open for my life to spiral further out of control and Gods comfort. We were apart for almost a year and the darkness of that year is for another post but I drifted further and further away from Him. When it’s only a little bit everyday you don’t notice and not a lot of people around you notice very quickly either, until it is too late.
Good news and fast forward a few months and it is NEVER to late for God. On a beach in Mallorca with more nude German tourists around than Christians I found myself again in close covenant and communion with my God. Listening to songs, reading scripture, and anything I could get my hands on. Hunger for him returned. It took me far too long, loosing so much, almost loosing everything before I finally accepted and humbly conceded that His plan for my life must certainly be better than my own.
Fast forward to today, a few months later and I can assure you that it is not a magical switch! On that beach I wish I could say that with my confession and re submitting my life to God everything just clicked back to normal. Not even close.
As I sit now writing this, I am in one of the most uncomfortable positions of my life. Literally my back is buggered. I have been sleeping on friends couches for several months now and it’s taking it’s toll. The latest of these couches is the smallest and least comfortable. Maybe payback for my sins Worse than the couch is the location. Without being disrespectful or ungrateful I am probably staying in the worst place I have ever spent longer than a week in my life! Winter is encroaching with alarming speed. I had work and it just got taken way from under me. Although I am technically still employed I am on a zero hours contract. Typically I received standard sort of 35 hours a week and really never thought I would get what was promised in the contract, however that is what I have had for the past few weeks. Zero hours.
There is light ahead and I by no means am writing any of this to evoke any sympathy from anybody, rather to paint an honest picture of my circumstances and whereabouts. We have secured a lovely 2 bedroom apartment in one of the nicest suburbs in the Midlands of England. A far cry from my current neighborhood. Only 17 days left until we move in on date of writing this. A base, a home, a place I can finally put my weary feet up will make me extremely grateful.
It’s just the beginning though.
This time has given me plenty of opportunity for reflection and equally time planning our future.
This is where it gets interesting. I catapulted myself into making plans and addressing my weaknesses and making contingency plans of contingency plans. Budgets, business plans, research projects. I prayed and reflected on our past plans, our commitments and desires from when we got married and I came up with a list of what we needed to do and a My plan was born. Spoiler alert, I got carried away.
But here it is, make sure to read to the end.
We want to host people. All who are weary to come and stay with us. After years of us both traveling we believe we would make fantastic hosts of a Guest Lodge. On top of that we are both also passionate about sharing our interests. For Sarah that means surfing, and she would like to complete her surf instructor course so we can offer surf lessons and maybe SUP tours. For me I am passionate about my country. I love South Africa and anybody who has met me abroad knows I just don’t shut up about all the amazing things they just have to come and see. So I would like to set up a scenario in which I can both host and show them around SA and sarah can spend time in the Ocean and share her passion for surfing.
We were deeply moved by a song called Oceans Rise and thus the lodge is intended to be named – Oceans Rise Adventure Lodge.
To get there though, I needed a plan and yes you guessed it I I I I I I started to take over. So enthused but also dangerously close to taking over the reigns again.
Get solid work in UK Earn lots in pounds Save lots – Goal £2000/month (20-1 exchange rate) Learn to manage and grow finances Scout property in SA – buy beach front land – Garden Route Do research on running a lodge / B&B Plan plan plan the lodge – Build it from the ground up – design everything Sarah and I get qualified in activities – surf instructors, safari tours, diving instructors etc Plan every detail before buying a thing Set up a fail safe, contngency plan – property in uk? Backup extra revenue stream for out of season Diversify asserts so they not all linked or in lodge Make oceans Rise happen!!! 5 years goal External hobbies for Sarah and I – artistic creative outlets. Art studio and writing Thank God everyday no every second for a life I didn’t deserve
Seems obtainable, even righteously so, but at 4am last night I was challenged by God to say that I need to submit to His will not mine and was definitely exposed for getting slightly ahead of myself, besides if this comes to be, His plan will be better than mine. God’s plan
Trust in Him.
Father your will be done in our lives.
Dreaming of our future can rob me of my present. The world is not enough for me, only God can satisfy and quench our souls. Just give me you. Dissatisfied perhaps in my current circumstance, I imagined a comforting scenario, a life that would make me happy and it does give me peace as long as I’m working towards it. I need peace in my present not peace in the Hope of my future.
But what if I get it? Will I be happy, will I still look ahead to something else? We need to be content before we even set out on this plan. In Him. He is enough.
I said to God just give me my wife back – He did Just get me out of debt and a job – He is Just get me back to SA – In His time Please God may we live by the sea where we can be happy, it really does feed our souls – If that is what you have planned for us Lord All I know is your plan is better than mine Lord. You know me, better than I know myself. You know Sarah and my hearts desires and what makes us come alive. It was, after all, you who placed this purpose over our lives.
If we do this, we do it bodly within your will and under your blessing. With complete faith in you to see it come to be. I trust in you father, that you know what is right for our lives.
I love you Lord, you rescued me. You are all that I want and you are all that I need.
Thank you Lord
I hope this encourages you to seek His will for your life and whilst it’s impotant to understand your passions and purpose its about trusting in Him for them to come to be.
Oceans Rise……2020? Dunno watch this space. I am doing something everyday towards it.
Anybody interested in finding out more about it, check back on www.oceansrise.co.za – coming soon.
Today I want to share a video with you. It gives me great hope for my future back home, that God can call someone and they can heed His call and I pray and trust he will be effective for Him and my beautiful country South Africa.
Mission – I read something once that said that God in His infinite wisdom placed in you a purpose. This purpose can be revealed through the deepest desires of your heart. What makes you come alive, what is your passion, what are you willing to work on everyday for the rest of your life even if it only comes to be in your childrens lifetime? What breaks your heart and you can’t just look the other way?, what motivates you to get so excited you can’t get your words out? Therein lies your purpose and mission.
Pray and seek Him, listen for that quiet tug inside your heart. Deep down you know what it is.
I believe this man is on a mission from God, I didn’t know much about him but must have watched every YouTube video with him in today. South Africa is crying out for a leader who deeply cares for her people, not one who looks to exploit them for their own selfish gain. This is an inspiring interview and then he share’s on mission and passion in a preach afterwards.
If you really want your life to be different, if you really want comfort. If you have tried to find peace but it hasn’t lasted. If you have been let down by someone who you loved. If you have failed and messed up and now loath yourself.
There is hope, there is life. it can all be different.
Watch these videos, with an open mind and open heart. Forget everything you think you know about Christianity and church. I’ll be the first to say the church has many problems and guess what so does every single Christian. Don’t let their failings stop you seeing what Jesus is about.
Less than 10 minutes, 2 videos, whats the risk? You might find something you never knew you were looking for or existed. I love this dude, he speaks the truth so eloquently, he challenges popular Christian methods and more importantly he will challenge you!
After the videos, here is a link to look through, y-jesus.com
Awesome website which will answer loads of your questions. Also please browse through my blog and read my real struggles and thoughts with trying to make sense of this life we living.
Love you all
More about Jesus – y-jesus.com
Yet again I find myself writing when I feel like i am more messed up than most people. Almost embarrassed by my confession to be a Christian. How can I say anything to anyone? I am not an example of how to live.
I am broken, I am so flawed, I am still falling and failing everyday. In the last year I have screwed up my life so badly. I have hurt people, lied to many, let down friends, failed to deliver in work, totally betrayed trust of those closest to me. More mistakes in the last year than the first 32!
I often feel too ashamed to even lift my eyes to the heavens. The world accepts me, it is so quick to comfort me, to understand, not to condemn. I sometimes mistake it for sincere and grasp onto it as a more appeal-able option but I know it is only because by accepting me as I am it allows them to live on as they are. It is with no real concern or acceptance of me, rather a selfish condolence of their own actions and lives.
Truth is I have learnt so much more about God and about myself through all the mistakes I have made. And there is hope for me Let me say that again. I have learnt more about God in the past year wandering around lost and a mess than I did sitting like a good boy in church all those years. Guess what I learnt:
1 – He is real. 2. He really does love us 3. There is hope – even after you screw up
I hold on tight to his hope. Hebrews 6:19 We have this hope as an anchor, firm and secure.
This verse is exactly what it says to be, an anchor, no matter the storm, I know I can trust in His love. No matter what I have done, how low I am, there is Hope in Jesus. Something to live for, something to wake up for, a great love that even in my darkest and lowest moments I somehow reflect. It is certainly not me, I thought I was a great example before I messed up. I self righteously thought I had it together so much better than the world, heck so much better than most of my mates in church. Yet I was never the light I was called to be?! In the midst of the darkest months of my life. All alone far away from the fellowship of my church, amongst no christian friends and very messed up and confused people have noticed something in me, a cheerfulness despite my circumstances, a kindness that can not come from me, a smile in complete turbulence. always an encouraging word, discipline in my work. Im not trying to be any of these things. I am too self absorbed in the woefulness of my life and am truly humbled by the unintentional influence I have had over new friends and colleagues. It is Christ in me. It is because although I have screwed up i still belong to Him and have his light inside of me.
John 13: 34-36 34 A new commandment I give to you,that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35 By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
I thought commandments were something that once we became a christian we would do our best to keep and uphold. I didn’t realise that in fact whene I gave my life to Christ, confessed my sin, that he is the Lord of my life and was filled with the Holy Spirit that even when I felt like I was far away from Him, not at church, not broadcasting my faith, not evangelizing that there was still the quiet spirit evident in me, again not me, I do not wish any recognition of it having anything to do with me, He lives in me. And even through the wreck of my life His light shines through. I have daily encounters, daily opportunities to Love people, to show them kindness, to listen, to offer myself to them, to help, with nothing expected in return, people have thought I am such a nice guy despite being so messed up, truth is I am just as much of a mess as everyone else and His light is the only good thing in me. He is my everything, I surrendered my life to him, I tried driving my life and look where it got me. God will use you in whatever situation you stubbornly put yourself.
Romans 8:28 We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God: those who are called according to His purpose.
Even if you still fall, and still find yourself tangled up in sin do not despair and again rest in him trusting that your salvation is secure. He says we become a new creation in him: 2 Corinthians 5:17 This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!
I have met some amazing people and have had opportunities to be a light to them, a flawed example of what God can do, that He loves even me and I have a smile and a Hope only because of Him. Everyday from now is a gift and I want to be His disciple wherever I am called, and if I again wander off my own way, I know He is still there with me and will still use me! My life plan now is just to Love people as much as I can, be kind to everyone, make them smile, treat them well, encourage and build up not tear people down and show that life doesn’t have to boring along the way, we can still have fun and one massive adventure! I am travelling at he mo and just enjoying the beauty of this world, the amazing people I get to meet and stories I get to hear is all such a blessing.
We all fall down, with Him we can get back up God will never leave you nor forsake you. y-jesus.com
Cool song by a South African singer – Matthew Mole
Have you ever heard those words when trying to speak to someone about God? I know I have. Maybe not exactly like that but Iv’e heard a few varieties. I have my own relationship with God, t’s not like yours, or I’m doing just fine thanks on my own, or I believe there are lot of ‘gods’, or whatever gets you through the night or the most common in todays wishy washy culture, I’m spiritual but not religious I have my own thing going on with ‘god’
Now the problem is this, 21st century culture is constantly urging us to live and let live to be accepting of all and non judgmental and so on.
Firstly I agree with part of that sentiment. We can’t force others to believe what we believe. We cant be so indignant with our own opinions that we are not even open to conversations. We can’t judge them-forgetting how much we were forgiven and are still daily being forgiven, because its not over once you’re saved, trust me. We can’t be fundamentalists who picket funerals and spread a message of condemnation. God never supported self righteousness, not then and not now.
But why I can’t just agree with ‘live and let live’ is this:
I am filled with a love and compassion that is not of me. I don’t think following a bunch of rules is a good idea and made me a better person and therefore think you should do it to…
Again, I am filled with love and compassion, I am filled with a joy that is boundless, I am filled with an indescribable peace, I am filled with a certainty of eternity, I am filled with a hope for any and all situations.
Lets put it this way; if you found a cure for pain, for heartache, for worry, for anxiety, for depression, for addiction, for emotional issues, for bad habits, for sickness and even for death. Would you keep it to yourself? Would you tell no one?
You would be so excited to share what you had found.
This gets mistaken sometimes for being ‘preachy’ and trying to get everyone to ‘believe what you believe’.
There are crazies out there, there are mad fundamentalist ‘Christians’ there are self righteous judgmental ‘Christians out there who think you are so evil and forget God loved you and came to die for you ‘whilst ‘ you were still a sinner like them, and not when you got it all together.
Please don’t group us with them. We love you, we care so deeply for you, we want you to experience the love, the peace and comfort that we have, we want you to share in this amazing amazing gift that is Jesus and his salvation.
I will never be ashamed to speak of Him and all He has done and is doing in my life.
My hope is that you will hear, He is knocking, let him in, give your life over to Him and let Him take all your troubles, all your tears, all your worries, all your sickness and all your life.
and then you will be ok….
I’m not ready to write But here I find myself on the page…
Already two lines in , this is how life started, I was not ready for that either. Sometimes I still feel like I’m not ready, who said go, I’m 32 and I’m looking around and I think where do I go, what am I meant to be doing?
I’m not alone all though I feel it at the moment, but more aptly I’m not alone in feeling this way. We all go through times when we question why and what or who for? Purpose some call it, just something to keep me temporary entertained is what most of us end up trying to do. The distraction is fleeting and in a time much sooner than we expected we find ourselves back at the crossroads of life where we again get to choose, purpose or distraction.
I have kept myself distracted with many things in my life. Traveling was certainly the most effective and most enjoyable for me personally. TV is the saddest distraction in my opinion as I feel it gives back the least. Whilst my chosen distractions also only results in a temporary fulfillment, travel at least leaves you with memories and in some cases shapes you into a better you. The greatest discovery through travel is that of yourself.
After the trip and the adventure is over you again find yourself at the crossroads, seeking purpose and peace.
We are unique as a species in that we seek things beyond the physical needs we have here on earth. Every single one of us. Some scientists put it down to genetics and sociology however I think if we all really examine our hearts we will agree we are searching for a meaning beyond this earth.
So what then?
Twice I have looked and twice I have found.
The first time I travelled, I ran away in truth, and I got lost but I did find myself. I found my inner heart and what makes it come alive. I also found God or He found me. The indescribable peace I had from this discovery is exactly that indescribable, but I will try:
I had always feared death, in a sense this stops you living, scared of everything. First part of the peace was an absolute surety in eternity. That my life did not end when I died but instead I would be with God in heaven, eternal peace no more worries no more pain. The peace from that alone allows you to live with peace.
Secondly knowing that I found and serve a God who has done it all. That’s right, I didn’t have to qualify to become a Christ follower. There was no 3 months probation. He knows us, he understands our fallibility and this is why he sent his Son to die for us. Jesus took our place and what we deserved, nothing we can do can earn our salvation! He has done it all, this is what they call the scandal of the gospel. Freely given to all who will accept him. The peace in knowing that my salvation was not in my completely incapable hands but that it rests in. Jesus is overwhelming.
Travel was now not the answer to my searching heart but it was as it should be, a blessing to be enjoyed and embraced and appreciated. He created every beautiful thing on the planet and I would like to see it all Our pastor always says don’t take a good thing from God and turn it into an ‘ultimate thing’ I believe in enjoying our lives but do not look for permenant comfort form the things of this world as they will leave you unsatisfied.
The Second time
6 years down the line, I had walked with God, I had been a dutiful christian, part of a local church, fallen like so many, into the trap of religion. An appearance of God following but very much trying to do it all on my own. Some say backsliding however I think of it more as complacency, ‘Not remembering The God of our youth’ the radical realization of Him. That He is real and that he is the only true peace and joy on this earth. Now if it wasn’t bad enough, I didn’t merely start to live on my own strength I made some mistakes that separated me from God. Not him leaving me, He said I will never leave you nor forsake you, but rather the shame and condemnation resulted in me hiding from him.
I was out in the wilderness, speaking less and less, getting through entire days without Him. At first the old nature suggests the very same distractions, I found solace in music, even learning to play, I read, I watched movies, I dreamed of traveling again, I tried everything and this time they were even less distracting and less fulfilling. Probably because I had experienced real joy and peace. I love the simile of Jesus and water, water from your tap does quench your thirst but only temporary. Whilst your thirst is quenched you are certain you have no need for water, but you will need another drink at some point. Jesus on the other hand is a a permanent solution and available all the time by just merely remembering what he has already done for you.
I became anxious, something I’ve never really experienced, I might have even had some anxiety attacks. It’s funny how God as a solution was so far from my mind, I found myself googling anxiety coping solutions and tried breathing and positive affirmation and all sorts, all temporarily effective but I’d wake up the next day and yet again it was waiting for me. Friends even suggested spending time with Him but it was as if I didn’t even hear them.
One night the anxiety was so bad I’d even taken some pills to help with it but just found myself actually trembling and pacing up and down and completely incapable of a rational thought. I don’t even know how I ended up on the bed listening to music or how it ended up on my ‘church’ playlist I had actually been avoiding those songs out of shame and guilt. But the first song that played was ‘You’re not guilty anymore’ I broke down completely crying like a baby, something I hardly ever do. I had an intellectual and theological understanding of the difference between guilt/condemnation and conviction. I understood Gods love and forgiveness but was by no means living like I believed any of it.
I had an absolute peace, and surety of the words of the song being true. The next song that played was Take Heart by Hillsong united. I completely broke down, sang it and played it maybe 5 times. I was completely aware of His presence and felt His love and peace. This was not just an emotional cheer up, instead an indescribable peace.
I will put the words from the song below, they are powerful, more than any pill or therapy. There is a hope, there is a peace, I swear to you there is no greater comfort than God and his love. No matter what you going through he can and will comfort you.
John 14:27 – Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Philippians 4:7 – “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Take Heart – Hillsong United – listen here – http://youtu.be/8MfBQ30Ta9w
[Verse 1:] There is a light It burns brighter than the sun He steals the night And casts no shadow There is hope Should oceans rise and mountains fall He never fails
[Chorus:] So take heart Let His love lead us through the night Hold on to hope And take courage again
[Verse 1:] In death by love The fallen world was overcome He wears the scars of our freedom In His Name All our fears are swept away He never fails
[Bridge:] All our troubles And all our tears God our hope He has overcome
All our failure And all our fear God our love He has overcome All our heartache And all our pain God our healer He has overcome
All our burdens And all our shame God our freedom He has overcome
All our troubles And all our tears God our hope He has overcome
All our failures And all our fear God our love He has overcome
God our justice God our grace God our freedom He has overcome
God our refuge God our strength God is with us He has overcome
My soul knows it’s worth…. My joy is boundless…
With the tragic passing of Robin Williams, seemingly the epitome of happiness yet truly depressed, I can’t help but question what is true happiness, what is real joy.
Deeper than a smile and a belly laugh what lies beneath that causes us to feel happy? And how do we sustain it?
I loved almost all of his movies, they made me ‘happy’ especially Patch Adams, but it’s a fading joy, lasts no longer than the day I watched it.
So then what do we do to find real lasting joy?
Think of all you pursue
Wealth, recognition, international acclaim, the opportunity to do what you ‘love’ so that you never work another day in your life ( I’m sure you’ve all heard that one) how about love and family?
Surely if you had all of this you would be happy? Most of us don’t get close to getting all that, we tirelessly chase after it and that’s why when someone so funny, so inspiring as Robin Williams passes, it’s a unique opportunity to question and ponder how, and why was he still so unhappy? And would we be too?
Now I do not want to belittle those who suffer from clinical depression and mental illness, but rather to focus on us all who search for meaning and happiness from the world and are always left unsatisfied.
The problem is, we believe if we had that job, that house, lived in that place, married that person, had our OWN family, we would find that joy that we all seek. And sometime you might, but not lasting joy.
Storms will come.
Your life will be rocked and if your joy is circumstantial then it goes to figure that if those delicate circumstances change your joy will diminish?
So what then?
Many like Robin Williams just can’t take it anymore and give in or give up. Others live lives of misery, also giving up on finding joy, they become cynical and mocking.
Truth is most of us just seek distraction. I did this. Whatever will keep them distracted enough to not have to face the fact that they are actually unsatisfied by the world, unfulfilled, they are not living the life that had anticipated but even if you had everything you wanted you would likely feel the same way.
King Solomon from the bible had everything! Now for those not so familiar with the bible, Solomon was a king, the wisest and wealthiest king ever! He was David’s son, he rebuilt the temple. He had riches we cannot even fathom. He had 700 wives and 300 concubines, it is said he could have anything his heart desired! This is so far above what any man has today, think of all the celebs and all the successful businessmen and all the royals and you are still short of Solomon’s glory.
Yet he declares near the end of his life:
Meaningless, everything is meaningless
Now do not despair, he goes on to say that the only satisfying thing is. God.
All things are created by God and he declared them to be good however they can not fully satisfy us. Why seek the things God gives us when we can have him?
I have seen families lose loved ones, friends lose money and jobs, friends go through unthinkable evil committed against them, friends go through struggles and disappointments and all of these friends who have Jesus, have an anchor that regardless of the storm their souls feel comforted. I have never known anyone to truly give their life over to Him and want it back. It’s so much more than a religion we follow or a type of behavior we attempt, it’s a love we feel and an indescribable peace. Then we slowly start to reflect this love to others, sadly most people view the church as self righteous and judgmental, and it sometimes is but Jesus is never!
Be honest with yourself, do you really expect anything in this world to satisfy you and make you happy? Sit on that thought give it enough time to really digest…
Awake my soul to the hope you hold, your grace is all I need. Is a line from a song I love, it’s the best option, the only real option.
We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,
Inspiring videos of people who despite their situations have ‘this joy’
Please watch this video for an awesome explanation of the difference between Jesus vs religion –
My Final thought;
Depression is a disease, Bipolar and other clinical depression as suffered by Robin Williams is a disease and can be treated and managed by doctors, physiologists and the correct medicine.Many crazy Christians promote the incorrect doctrine of Faith healing, in other words you have to have faith to be healed otherwise there is some sin in your life. This is heresy. Try telling someone who has cancer to have faith to be healed and if they are not they did not have enough faith?! Disguusting. this will lead them to feel insufficient and deserving of all their pain and sickness.
Now can God heal, absolutely!
But more importantly he can heal your soul.
He can provide His peace and comfort regardless or despite of your situation, (you could be in jail or war) your circumstance ( you could be broke and in huge debt), your illness (you could be on your deathbed with cancer) your mental struggles (addiction or depression) God is not waiting for you to ‘have faith’ and be better, He is there in it with you, he can give you an indescribable peace, everyone who asks for it…
Philippians 4:6-7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Romans 10:13 for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
This dude is amazing! His attitude is just brilliant. This is one of the most moving testimonies about how God can fix what is really broken in/with you and use you for his purpose.
My name is Nick Vujicic and I am thankful to have been born 30 years ago with no arms and no legs. I won’t pretend my life is easy, but through the love of my parents, loved ones, and faith in God, I have overcome my adversity and my life is now filled with joy and purpose. I reside now in California with my wife, Kanae, and we both love seeing people’s lives changed for the better or touched in some way. It is my hope that your life is positively impacted by my story.
I was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, and it was a shock to my parents that I arrived without limbs. There is no medical reason for it. My parents did their very best to keep me in the mainstream school system and give me every opportunity to live to the fullest. I was blessed to have a brother and a sister as my best friends too.
We later moved to Brisbane, Australia, where I lived for 14 years before I made the move to California. At age eight, I could not see a bright future ahead and I became depressed. When I was ten years old, I decided to end my life by drowning myself in a bathtub. After a couple attempts, I realized that I did not want to leave my loved ones with the burden and guilt that would result from my suicide. I could not do that to them.
I wasn’t depressed my entire childhood, but I did have ups and downs. At age thirteen I hurt my foot, which I use for many things like typing, writing and swimming. That injury made me realize that I need to be more thankful for my abilities and less focused on my disabilities.
When I was fifteen years old, I sealed my faith in God and from there it has been an amazing journey.
A janitor at my high school inspired me to start speaking about my faith and overcoming adversity when I was seventeen. I spoke only a dozen times to very small groups over the next two years. Then I found myself in front of three hundred sophomore (grade 10) students and I was very nervous. My knees were shaking. Within the first three minutes of my talk, half the girls were crying, and most of the boys were struggling to hold their emotions together. One girl in particular was sobbing very hard. We all looked at her and she put her hand up. She said, “I am so sorry to interrupt, but can I come up and hug you?”
She came hugged me in front of everyone, and whispered in my ear, “Thank you, thank you, thank you. No one has ever told me that they loved me and that I am beautiful the way I am.”
Her gratitude inspired me to go across 44 countries and speak 2,000 times. I realized that we all need love and hope and that I was in a unique position to share that with people around the world.
While majoring in both accounting and financial planning at a university, I also worked on developing my abilities as a speaker. I worked with a speaking coach who helped to cultivate me as a presenter. He especially worked on my body language as my hands flew everywhere at first!
I spoke on motivational topics after creating the company, attitude is altitude. I also launched a non-profit ministry, life without limbs, to spread my messages of faith and hope around the world.
Whoever you are, wherever you’re from and whatever you are dealing with, I hope that you will be inspired by my story and my message. Please enjoy browsing around this website where I share with you my thoughts on faith, hope and love to encourage you and to help you overcome your own challenges.
Dream big my friend and never give up. We all make mistakes, but none of us are mistakes. Take one day at a time. Embrace the positive attitudes, perspectives, principles and truths I share, and you too will overcome.
New International Version (NIV)
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
You are no accident, it says in the bible that you were knitted together whilst you were still in your mother womb – Psalm 139:13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother?s womb. (NIV Bible)
God has placed special talents and skills in everyone of us. But many wander lost trying to find their calling and wasting their true talents. I don’t believe necessarily that your true calling or talent may even mean that it should be your career. I believe we are definitely called to work as it says in 2 Thessalonians 3:10
10 For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”
But our God given talent or calling might be something we do after work or even whilst at work but not part of our job or maybe on weekends or perhaps we do totally give up our ‘career’ and fulfill his purpose.
There is an old expression that states, “Don’t be so heavenly minded that you are of no earthly good.” Clever and catchy cliché, isn’t it? The only problem is that these words are unbiblical. The Bible says, “Set your mind on things above, not on the things that are on earth” (Col 3:2). Contrary to popular opinion, being heavenly minded always inspires us to be more earthly good. Thus, our goal as Christians must be to set our minds on things above and faithfully serve the Lord.
I love the quote from the movie ‘Into the Wild’ where Alexander Supertramp says “Careers are a 20th century invention and I don’t want one.”
I read a book a few years ago that had a very big impact on my life. I don’t agree with everything in the book but I do love the guys heart and his way with words – “A man’s calling is written on his true heart, and he discovers it when he enters the frontier of his deep desires.” ― John Eldredge from the book Wild at Heart
He goes on to say – “If you had permission to do what you really want to do, what would you do? Don’t ask how; that will cut your desire off at the knees. How is never the right question; how is a faithless question. How is God’s department. He is asking you what. What is written in your heart? What makes you come alive? If you could do what you’ve always wanted to do, what would it be? You see, a man’s calling is written on his true heart, and he discovers it when he enters the frontier of his deep desires.” — John Eldredge, Wild at Heart
Take some time, go for a walk, remember back to when you were in school or just starting out in your ‘career’ what was it that made you come alive/ What is it that gets you excited?Where and how can/are you going to make a difference. Do it!
I came across a good blog recently about turning your interests into your carreer –
New International Version (©2011) And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
The Creator – The Alpha and Omega
Even if you don’t know him, he knows you. God has your address & phone number, he sees your whole facebook & it says that he even knows the number of hairs on your head.
To find out more about him, I recommend this site: http://y-jesus.com/ It addresses the historical facts surrounding the existence of Jesus but it also very adequately explores the resulting importance of why this matters to us on a personal level.
“Regardless of what anyone may personally think or believe about him, Jesus of Nazareth has been the dominant figure in the history of Western culture for almost twenty centuries.” ~ Jaroslav Pelikan, historian
He wants it all! Your whole life, your every action and re-action. This means your job, family and all your money! In the old testament tithing was part of the law, and as the word itself means, you were expected to tithe 10% of your salary to the church. The new covenant doesn’t require you to tithe 10% but rather give him everything. A bit extreme? Not really where did it all come from to begin with? Equally God doesn’t want us on Sunday mornings only, he wants to be involved in our entire lives. Give him your weekends, your job your marriage, your relationships – your life.
I think that sometimes it is more difficult to control our attitudes than our actions and words. People can pick up on a bad attitude. Grumbling in the work place, dragging your feet when your wife or your coach asks you to do something.
This verse for me also means having a Good Attitude, as a Christ follower you should be the most enthusiatic person at work or in the team. Willing to work or push harder than anyone else and do it with a smile on your face.
Enthusiasm originally meant inspiration or possession by a divine afflatus or by the presence of a god at that stage they were reffering to Greek Gods but the similie I am trying to draw is that as a believer, someone within who Christ dwells we should be enthusiatic and much much more.
We should be filled with the fruits of the spirit – Galatians 5:22-23 New International Version (NIV)
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Arguing - this is one I have had to fight against all my life! Guess what you don’t always have to be right, EVEN IF YOU ARE.
Drop it, hold your tongue, do not correct, interrupt unnecessarily, prove your point or get your way. In a team, marriage or business partnership try put the outcome or the other parties in the relationship before you.
2 Timothy 2:24 (NIV)
24 And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.
Colossians 3:17 – New Living Translation (©2007)
And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.
I like the ‘New Living Translation’ here! It takes it to whole other level. More than just ‘being a good little Christian’ and doing everything for God. ‘Representative’ in this verse is bordering on scary, their is a reverence all of a sudden. It is a far more daunting and big deal to be representing God whether it be in the work place or at school be mindful of who you represent. At the same time you can also feel warm and proud! Represent God in all things that you do.
1 Corinthians 10:31
New International Version (NIV)
31 So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.
The Good News, Life is easier when you life for him with him. There is no greater comforter, there is no greater joy than living out Gods purpose in your life. He placed a deep desire in your heart and if you follow it ‘Colossians 3:17′ is not so difficult to do!
Keep on Keeping on
I was blessed to grow up in a loving Christian home. Both my parents had committed their lives to the full-time ministry of serving God and His people. Our little family, my parents, my elder sister Johanni, younger sister Steffani and I were instructed in the Way of the Lord – always placing Him first. We were taught the Word of God from an early age – learning it verse by verse and reciting it to guests visiting our home. We were basking in the love of the Lord and I felt blessed, and at a young age was starting to comprehend the Father’s Heart for His children here on earth.
In primary school I excelled at both academics and sport. I was a happy child and was experiencing God’s true blessings in my life. My parents loved each other and protected and challenged us on every level – always offering their support and motivation. My father instilled a strong champion spirit within us, teaching us to believe that we are winners and always motivating us by saying: “The best is yet to come. That is what God wants for you – the BEST, to PROSPER”. My mother taught us the art of survival – to live with endurance and perseverance. She taught us diligence and nurtured a fighter’s spirit within each one of us – never to give up in challenging times and to have patience and perseverance. When I went to high school things started to change. I was going through the typical changes a teenage boy experiences – wanting to impress the girls but feeling insecure, looking terribly out of proportion with extra large ears and feet and experiencing problems with my skin. I didn’t play for the A-team, and wasn’t very popular. A good thing was that my attitude was right and I always participated in as many events as I could, knowing through what I had been taught that hard work and a good attitude is what pulls you through.
My parents were going through a crisis in their marriage and it became evident that my pretty picture of home was going to change. At the age 15 my parents chose to get a divorce. I was asking more and more questions about life and God – especially how a loving God could allow this to happen. Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do families get separated? I realised only later that this isn’t Gods plan, but we live and die by the decisions we make. In Deutoronomy 30 God says: “I lay before you life and death, blessing and cursing, so choose life..” Yet alot of times we blame God for the decisions we make.
This was a very big blow to my world. My picture of family was shattered – no more family holidays or Christmas’s together. The security I’d known until that point was plucked out from under me. Through this pain I made a decision that one day I would make a success of my marriage and I would learn from the mistakes my parents had made.
You also have to make that decision… its not good enough to say because your parents did it, that’s why you are doing it, you’re better than that! Turn your pain around. Learn from it. You can do it!
Instead of seeking God in all of my pain I found consolation with my friends and became more and more influenced by the group. Peer pressure, like what people thought of me, trying to be someone else, brought about a lifestyle of self-centeredness. I was always in pursuit of acceptance and acknowledgement, but ironically only feeding the void in your soul, being empty when I was alone.
I was living with my mother and two sisters and as a family we were going through some really challenging times. My elder sister Johanni was a full-time law student. Myself and Steffani were both still at high school. At 40 years old, having been a stay-at-home mom, my mother decided to study a degree in law in pursuit of her independence and financial freedom.
This was adding a lot of pressure to our situation and financially we were struggling to make ends meet. I remember a time I invited friends over to our house, advising them that they could only visit our home, but could not eat there because we did not have enough money for food to entertain our guests. It was during this time that my sister Johanni, 22 years old at the time and in her final year of LLB, fell pregnant with her long-time boyfriend. This was another blow to my understanding of life and family. A family so committed to serving God? What would everyone say? How would this look to the world? Our core moral values were in question. Johanni was faced with the choice so many women in her situation are faced with – the question of having an abortion. This proved to be the easy way out. In our home we were taught that the pain of discipline is worth more than the pain of shame. Taking responsibility was the right thing to do – it would bring forth fruit in the long run.
Johanni chose to take responsibility for her actions and not to give up, but to follow through with the pregnancy. God blessed her with a beautiful baby girl called Milla two weeks before her final LLB Law exam. Milla was a miracle and came to us in such a difficult time. Today we cannot imagine our lives without this little princess. Now she’s 7 years old and a bundle of life-giving joy!
My father taught us that if we continue doing the same things that other people were doing we would never be different. I wanted to be different. God blessed me with sporting talent. In this difficult time I chose to be different and make a few major decisions. I wanted to be the fastest, the strongest and the best at what I did. When my father was young he was a prominent sports figure in South Africa, excelling at athletics and rugby. I had the blessing of inheriting these genes. Yet, talent is never enough. My father had taught me that the seeds of discipline and sacrifice needed to be sown for the harvest of success to come in. I had to make a commitment. It was the only thing I was sure of in my life. I was motivated by the quote: “Success is not the blaze of sudden glory won, it is the effort adding up of strong work done.” I was in gym every morning at 5am, playing rugby after school, choir in the evenings and then there was the academics. This was such a busy time, but before I knew it I was in Grade 12 and I had grown from a small out of proportion teen to a tall, strong and fast young man. I started reaping the rewards of those disciplined decisions. Not partying when my friends did and training when they didn’t . I was No 1 in South Africa in discus, I was No 3 in shotput U20, and qualified for the World Junior Athletics Championships. I was chosen to captain the Blue Bulls at Craven Week and I was excelling at my rugby. I was confronted with a choice to pursue a professional career in sport and chose rugby.
After high school I signed a contract with the Blue Bulls and was given a full bursary to study at the University of Pretoria. This was awesome and I was experiencing financial independence I wasn’t accustomed to because of my contract. In my first year I was chosen for the SA U19 side and the media started paying attention to me. I was labelled the next big thing in South African rugby. I was experiencing the honor of man and I was riding this wave of glory. However, at the World Championships the unexpected happened when I broke my arm. The break was bad and the injury would initially keep me sidelined for at least two months. My mind was filled with so many questions. This was supposed to be my time and my breakthrough after everything I had invested. Why me Lord? Why now? My gran shared the Bible verse from John 13:7 with me, and I would only later fully understand it’s relevance. God has a plan with everything.
My arm did not heal in the expected time and I ended up not playing for 10 months. My thinking at the time was that it was a great time to commit to my studies, but it turned out to be the perfect excuse for a party. I was young and started hanging out in all the clubs, drinking and slowly losing my focus that had previously driven me to succeed. I was in a very bad space. My dad kept motivating me by saying I had to remain positive and that the best was yet to come. By the end of 2004 I had no goals and no motivation, and was totally unfocussed. On top of all this my arm refused to heal. It was at this time I believed things could not get any worse. I was so wrong. I got the shocking news that my father had a heart attack and had died at the age of 53. How sudden! How could this be? Lord this is too much! Why now? I need my dad, my father, my mentor… But God had a divine plan…
I was immediately confronted with questions of my life, mortality and eternity. This was the moment my life changed. I knew that I desperately needed to get my life right with God. I started asking what the goal of my life was and chasing God’s plan. I was not sure of what would happen to me if I died. I needed to connect with God and make a few radical decisions for what I believed. My father had been the cornerstone of my security. He was my foundation, my protector, my guide. My dad called himself the “Groot Leeu” – he was 6 ft 4 and had an awesome aura around him. He had a fantastic sense of humour, was multi-talented, played the piano and guitar, wrote the most incredible letters, always sent us motivational texts and was always inspiring us. He believed in me and raised his children for one great goal – to do great things for the Kingdom of God. My father taught us to always be the best you can be and wrote each one of us a song when we were little. Mine went something like this: “My naam is Ouboet en ek is my pa se bul. Ek is nog maar baie klein, maar Loftus gaan nog brul. Al wil ek nooit aan die lag kom nie en almal se ek is nors bly ek nog die baas, met “Big shot” op my bors…”
My dad spoke prophetically into our lives from a young age. I will never forget the simple truths he taught me – always be humble and friendly with everyone. They say when a father dies the son becomes a man. The “Groot Leeu” (Big lion) was gone and the “Klein Leeu” (Small lion) had to take his place. God started sending people into my life, sharing His love and relating their life stories and that it was time for me to make a decision for Him. One Sunday morning after a heavy night before, I found myself sitting in church. He was calling. The call was loud and clear within my spirit and I knew I wanted to give my life to the Lord Jesus Christ and commit to serving Him. That day it felt like the pastor was speaking directly to me. The Bible says God is light, and when he shines upon you it is your conscience that speaks to you.
I was tired of hangovers and the fake glory of man. I chose to give my life back to God that day in the church, publicly in front of people, crying and repenting of my sins, accepting Christ in my heart completely, wanting Him to consume every part of me. And He did.. .he made me new. God makes you a new creation and wipes away your past!
AGAIN, I wanted to be different. I no longer wanted to live the lie. To be lukewarm and live proclaiming to be a Christian but not really living like one. I had a burning within my soul to serve God and people, to find God and to really know God. Because, I had made the decision to seek God’s Kingdom first above everything else, He started to change my life. I wanted to serve people and to deny myself. To see people coming into the Kingdom of God and finding Jesus Christ, finding freedom and peace and restoration for their brokenness. I knew that I was chosen to fulfil God’s plan for my life and not my own. God had stationed me in a specific position to reach people and to share with them what He has done in my life. God has called us to be fishers of men and to live in love with one another. I am a warrior for the Kingdom of God and will stand on His word with my life and all that I am. I realised God’s plans are better than mine and that He knows more than me. In 2005 I met Juanné my (then girlfriend) and now my wife. She is a woman who loves God more than me, who is my best friend and the most beautiful woman on earth, someone who was willing to walk a road less travelled and who had a heart for broken people. That’s something I wanted, and God blessed me with her, in abundance. In our relationship we made tough decisions and set boundaries to keep us pure before marriage and really became best friends. We still reap the rewards, and you can too if you make tough choices and put God first above yourself and your partner. Remember the devil wants to destroy your relationship and that your relationship is the first test of your faith. Charity starts at home…always!
My rugby career started to soar and I was chosen to play for the Springboks in 2006. My test debut was a nightmare losing 49-0 to Australia and then being dropped from the team. But I got a second chance and then gave a Man of the Match performance against the All Blacks in Rustenburg. 2007 was a World Cup year and the excitement was building. Having had a successful Super 14 with the Bulls which culminated in us winning the title I was anticipating being part of the tournament in France. I was selected in the World Cup squad, and was being touted as a favourite to win the Player of the Tournament by some respected rugby men.
Two weeks after the squad announcement I started to cough up blood, had chest pains and breathing pains. Our team doctor took me for tests and the shocking news hit me.. .I had blood clots on my lungs! I thought: What? Blood clots? God, you must be joking? We’re on our way to the World Cup? The highlight of my career? I’m walking in your ways God? I live a healthy life, look after my body and train hard and don’t use illegal substances? Doctors said I had to take a course of blood-thinning medication for a minimum of six months and I was under strict instructions never to play rugby during that period. Immediately I knew God was in control. I didn’t know exactly how but His word says He has great plans for our futures and that we’ve been healed by his wounds. I walked in faith and I wrote on a big poster : “Healed in Jesus name” because I knew God had the power to heal me. My faith was tested, but I made a decision to praise God even if I stayed sick or got healed because I knew God’s plan is bigger than mine and I had to submit to His will. It was an unconditional choice, in the same way He loves us unconditionally. There was alot of medical tests done, from head to toe. I would always put on a praise and worship cd in my car on the way to the hospital, screaming and praising God with a loud voice, knowing that whether my lungs are sick or if they’re healthy, I was going to praise God because HE IS GOOD. You keep with your decision… you keep on keeping on.
Man has limitations, but with God all things are possible.
Then… after the six months of medication a miracle happened. GOD HEALED ME. Doctors said it was impossible. They said I would never play again. Most people with blood clots never get off the medication, but God is moved by faith and not by belief in world systems. I was able to play rugby again and pursue my career. I got married at the end of 2008 which shows His great love and mercy. He did great work in me and he can do the same for you.
God will fulfil his plan for you if you trust Him. Jesus has used me as an instrument to reach my family and friends and help them change their lives by loving them the way He instructs us to. Through my rugby career I have been honoured to visit many exceptional countries and places and meet wonderful people. Many doors have been opened to me to share His Name and His Love. My message to you is that God has a plan for your life. He has a passion for YOU. He speaks to you everyday through that small voice inside you. Yes, you probably know it. Once you have decided to follow Him and live for Him, He will do more for you than you ever could have imaged. Take His hand, He will do the rest.
This blog is a Christian blog, the bible is my basis and foundation for everything I try to share and today I want to look at positive speech not positive thinking we will do that another time. There is alot of nonsense out there both in the church and in the world. You will hear things like if you say it you can do it, or in the church there is a brand of false teaching around the name it and claim theology.
Today I want to look at Matthew 12:34 New King James Version (NKJV) Brood of vipers! How can you, being evil, speak good things? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. This means that you could potentially fake it briefly and talk a lot of talk but overtime what is really in your heart will come out of your mouth. I heard a great preach recently from James which I will share below. One of the verses makes reference to the tongue being like a rudder that steers a ship. Something so small ultimately controls the direction of a massive vessel. Likewise we control our lives and our future with our tongues Listen to the sermon below for even more insight and revelation regarding our tongues. In order to overflow with good fruit you need to give your heart to God We can try our whole lives to control our thoughts or tongues and I am sorry to say it is impossible and a complete waste of time. God is the only one who can completely transform your life, turn it around 180degrees.
We can however be disciplined and make mental and spiritual adjustments to our behavior even after we have given our life’s to God. Lets start with the tongue when we address the condition of our hearts. I believe that forcing good habits and good speach can slowly start to adjust the heart. I briefly want to focus on 2 words in particular that if you change can change your life.
if you say you can’t then you have already failed it is final, it implies and prophecies defeat. Instead try throw in a ‘ I haven’t found a way yet’ or an upbeat ‘not yet’ try say instead ‘I will find a way’ Finally a little encouragement that I always take is that all things are possible through Him.
The next word that I really can’t stand is Try
I read a book that replaced ‘try’ with ‘endeavor’ which is a fantastic word but not that easy to throw into normal conversation without sounding a bit ponsy’ Privately, endeavoring to do something is great. The word try again implies defeat. How many times have you heard ‘I tried my best’ and not really believed it or when someone says ‘I will try to make it.’ You know they most likely won’t be there. It has become a soft word to get out of doing things. Another replacement is to say ‘attempt’ but I am also not such a fan of that word. At least attempt I believe kind of implies that if you do fail you will try again.
I advocate that you rather say ‘I do, or ‘I will’ and if you won’t or say you won’t. I will be there. It doesn’t leave any room for your to get out of it. i will do it. You better do it now, because you didn’t say try you can’t get away with not doing it. Humans and particularly men always look for wiggle room. Ways to get around things, take short cuts. I am guilty of this. By avoiding these 2 words I am able to combat this nature in me. I fail all the time but I am a work in progress, and I pray that God moulds me into a better man, husband and friend everyday.
On the lighter side, I saw a funny picture on Pinterest the other day that read: ‘Wives, if your husband says he will fix it, he will fix it, there is no need to keep reminding him every six months’
“Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important.” – C.S Lewis
“‘There is no such thing as an atheist in the Southern Ocean” – Robin Knox-Johnston, the round the world sailor.
“What doesn’t kill you, makes you smaller.” – Super Mario
“A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” – Charles Spurgeon
“Knowing the Bible is one thing. Knowing its Author is another.” – Unknown
“Any faith that ignores the poor is not of Jesus.” – Rick Warren “I bring good news to the poor,comfort to the brokenhearted, freedom to captives, and release to those imprisoned by darkness.” (Jesus quoting Isaiah 61:1)
“Beware of no man more than of yourself; we carry our worst enemies within us.” – Charles Spurgeon
New International Version (©2011) 1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
Some more Bible Verses relating to Building Each Other Up from the King James Version (KJV)
1 Thessalonians 5:11 – Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do.
1 Corinthians 14:26 – How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying.
Romans 14:19 – Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.
Proverbs 27:17 – Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.
Edifying – To instruct especially so as to encourage intellectual, moral, or spiritual improvement.
[Middle English edifien, from Old French edifier, from Late Latin aedificre, to instruct spiritually, from Latin, to build; seeedifice. Prior to building one another up we need to first recognize and affirm each other.
Recognize: Its incredible how many pastors are often unaware of how their preach was received or ‘how they did’ alot of the time they think they were waffling, yet God was stiring hearts and lives were changed. The same goes for the worship team. I have overheard our own team discussing how off key they thought they were, or that certain settings were off and it all just sounded wrong. Let them know when they were rocking it, when they were moving us to worship.
We need to recognize one another’s good works, appreciate how hard they have worked or practiced and then we have to recognize that is is Jesus within them leading them to do these good works for him.
Affirm: once you realise this you will be aware of mans frailty of his self doubt and his insecurities. Here is where you have to be sensitive to these men, build them up, encourage them. Try send the pastor or worship leader an email letting them know that they are appreciated and that they are being effective for his Kingdom.
At the same time you will become aware of a real annointing over someone, on Gods clear purpose being unravelled through them. He chooses the least among us to ensure that we recognize it is all through his power not not our own. Most of the disciples were plain fishermen, Matthew was a tax collector. You are more able to encourage and build them up when you realise it is Gods will that they are carrying forward. Pray for your leaders, thank God for using them and you.
Ephesians 4:11-16 – And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers Finally just remember, we are one team, one body we need to spur each other on.