Monday, January 15, 2018

ARE YOU TOO BUSY?


The following was found in my notes from 1988. The Author is Unknown, I checked online.

Satan called a worldwide convention. In his opening address to his evil angels, he said, "We can't keep the Christians from going to church.  We can't keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth. We can't even keep them from forming an intimate, abiding relationship experience in Christ.

Once they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken. So let them go to their churches; let them have their conservative lifestyles, but steal their time, so they can't gain that relationship with Jesus Christ.

This is what I want you to do, angels. Distract them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection through-out their day!"

"How shall we do this?" shouted his angels. "Keep them busy in the nonessentials of life and invent innumerable schemes to occupy their minds," he answered. "Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, and borrow, borrow, borrow.  Persuade the wives to go to work for long hours and the husbands to work 6-7 days each week, 10-12 hours a day, so they can afford their empty lifestyles.  Keep them from spending time with their children. As their family fragments, soon, their home will offer no escape from the pressures of work!"

Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still, small voice.  Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive.  To keep the TV, internet, iPhone’s and their laptops going constantly at home and at work. See to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays non-biblical music constantly. This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ."

"Fill their coffee tables with magazines and newspapers.  Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day. Invade their driving moments with billboards. Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, mail order catalogs, sweepstakes, and every kind of newsletter and promotional offering free products, services and false hopes.

Keep skinny, beautiful models on the magazines so their husbands will believe that external beauty is what's important, and they'll become dissatisfied with their wives.  That will fragment those families quickly!"

"Even in their recreation, let them be excessive. Have them return from their recreation exhausted, disquieted and unprepared for the coming week. Don't let them go out in nature to reflect on God's wonders.  Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, concerts and movies instead. Keep them busy, busy, busy!

And when they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled consciences and unsettled emotions. Go ahead, let them be involved in soul-winning; but crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek power from Jesus.

Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause. It will work!  It will work!"

It was quite a convention.  The evil angels went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get more and more busy and more and more rushed, going here and there.

I guess the question is: Has the devil been successful at his scheme? You be the judge!
Does "busy" mean:  B-eing U-nder S-atan's Y-oke?



As I’ve said many times, there’s no such thing as a balanced life. Jesus was one of the most unbalanced people I’ve studied. The hours He worked, the miles He walked, the thousands He healed, spoke to and touched. The sermons He preached, the parables He told, the all-night prayer meetings, the 40 days of fasting, the demons He fought off.  Balance? If you seek a balanced life, do not go in to B4T work. But in the midst of all He did, Jesus was never rushed. He was always in control of His time.

And that’s how you know when you are too busy; it’s when you lose control of your time that you know you are too busy.  So.  Are you too busy?

And let me ask again. Has the devil been successful at his scheme?

Monday, January 8, 2018

IS IT FINISHED?

Do you have a problem finishing what you start? That book you've been meaning to write?  That door that's been waiting to be fixed?  The outing you are going to take with your child? Weight you are going to lose?  Do you have a problem finishing what you start?

There was a man in my neighborhood when I was a kid who left his Christmas lights up all year one year.  He did not want to take them down when it was cold outside, and come the Spring, he went on holiday. By the time he got around to it, he realized he might as well leave them up, for it was July and only half a year away from Christmas, and just 2 months from being legitimately early.

Many of us are good at starting things, we are not so good at finishing things. But prizes are not awarded for great beginnings, but only for great finishes.

Haggai was the ‘Prophet of Priorities’. The name Haggai means festive.  There is only one Haggai in the Bible.  He was born during captivity, so perhaps his birth brought joy to his parents.  Joy, Charity, what a name.

This book is one of the easiest books in the Old Testament to date for it says when Darius was king. Thus, the time is 520BC.  The governor is Zerubbabel and the high priest is Joshua.  Haggai is the first prophet after the captivity.  He has a zealous message, a message for a slothful people who were hurting from captivity.

Haggai’s burden increases his zeal. His burden increases his focus. His mission is to rebuild the temple. The people had started the rebuilding 15 years earlier, but they had never finished.  For 15 years, there had not been worship as there was no place to praise God.

We read the people believed that it is, not time for God's house to be built.  They had other priorities – building their own houses, tending their own fields. After Haggai challenged the people, it still took the people 23 days before they acted.  In addition, both the governor and high priest still hesitated to act. 

Then, and now, it takes time for people to obey God’s message and act.  In your own life, how long has it been in your life since God spoke to you about something you need to do?  But you've not done it yet.  Is there a relationship you need to fix? Time, you need to invest in the Word? A bad habit to stop?

In explaining to His followers the cost involved in following Him Jesus says;
Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won't you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, 'This person began to build and wasn't able to finish.'   Luke 14:28-30

Incomplete assignments. Unfilled promises. Defective work. Unfinished obedience. None of these brings glory to Jesus.

About His own life Jesus adds, My food is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work. And His last words on the cross were, It is finished. Jesus completed His assignments.

Jesus is glorified in our finishes. Is there anything He wants you to finish?
There’s still 30,931,200 seconds left in this year to get it done!