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4 years, 3 months ago 4

 

None of us can do it alone.  God sends special people into our lives to do his will. We need  encouragers, faith builders, shepherds, confidants, intercessors, friends, pals, helpmates, the list goes on and on.  God has richly blessed me with all the above, and many of them came in the form of  photography buddies.  Jim Begley, Chuck Summers, Raymond Jabola, there have been blessedly many.  One has been extra special, Carl Turner.  Carl is one of those rare individuals, that can weep at the drop of a hat, he is that devoted to God, that committed to His walk, that determined not to let “Him” down.

 

Many people encourage us, and lift us up, Carl inspires me!  Carl doesn’t tell you he is committed, he shows you, he doesn’t say he loves you, he shows you.  He is not afraid to suggest something others wouldn’t be bold enough to suggest.  I appreciate many things, I’m thankful for many things, but I cherish this kind of friend.  At the end of the day, you come to realize that God, in His infinite wisdom knows what me need the most, and He always supplies it!

 

How are you fitting into God’s plans, are you working as an encourager?   Are you asking God who needs you, who needs what you can give?  Are you asking God to show you what He desires from your life for others, are you willing, Carl is!  You can be too!

 

Blessed,

 

the pilgrim

4 years, 3 months ago 2

 

Happiness is a good thing, in fact our forefathers wrote in our Declaration of Independence that we should have the right to the pursuit of happiness.    Happy |ˈhapē|adjective ( -pier , -piest )1 feeling or showing pleasure or contentment.  The only problem is happiness is based on circumstances.  You got a raise in your salary, you feel great, you get laid off, you feel bad!  Happiness is alway based on what’s happening around you.  Joy is, on the other hand, is created from the inside, it’s the state of great Peace.  Peace is not circumstantial. When we turn over our lives into God’s hands he brings a peace that passes the world’s understanding, He brings real joy into our lives.  Paul was often in prison, but he himself declare he was not in prison he was in His Lord. When you live in a constant relationship with Him, you rise above the daily circumstances, or at least you can!  When you truly trust in Him you can truly See His face, Feel His presence, and Trust in His love….

 

Why would a person that had the best offered to him, accept anything less.

 

Blessings, 

 

the pilgrim

 

 

 

4 years, 3 months ago 1

 

Today’s In Touch lesson was great, please let me share it and some thoughts….

 

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

 

 

New Living Translation (NLT)

 24 Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! 25 All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified. 

 

What words would you use to describe our society? Materialistic, sensual, impatient, indulgent, undisciplined–these are just a few. We’re also a “have it now” culture. Satan specializes in presenting us with opportunities for instant gratification while promising us that indulging our appetites will bring us the satisfaction we seek.

 

Human appetites, in themselves, are not sinful. In fact, they’re God-given. However, because of our fleshly weaknesses, they need to be controlled. When our appetites rule us, we’re in trouble. Paul likened the Christian life to that of athletes who are so focused on winning the race that they exercise self-control in every area of their lives.

 

That’s exactly how we’re called to live, yet we lack the motivation, determination, and power to do so in our own strength. For this reason, we need to rely on the Holy Spirit within us. If we yield our lives to Him and step out in obedience to His promptings, we’ll have the strength to say no when fleshly desires feel overpowering (Gal. 5:16).

 

Another key to success is keeping our focus on the eternal instead of the temporal. Many decisions that seem mundane are in fact spiritually significant. Are you indulging an appetite that could result in the sacrifice of an imperishable reward in heaven?

 

When the Enemy tempts us, he always tries to keep our attention on our desire and the pleasure of indulgence rather than on the eternal rewards and blessings we’re forfeiting. Just remind yourself how quickly immediate gratification wanes and how long eternity lasts.

 

This morning on ESPN there was a story about a professional football player that got into trouble in a night club at 4:00 a.m.  Duh!  What wopuld anyone be doing at a night club at 4:00 a.m.  The story said the young man had, had problems in the past but seemed to have gotten his act together, apparently no one advised him on where to stay away from, to stay out of trouble!  As Christians we need to choose wisely where we go, who we hang out with, and what we do. Sometimes staying out of trouble, spiritual or physical can be as simple as not going where the trouble resides!

 

Walk strong and tall in Him!

 

the pilgrim

 

*Image info:  Shot on film many years ago and now processed with Topaz Simplify to create the painterly affect.  Learned from my partner,  Jim Begley at this past weekends workshop!!!  Even the teachers learn!

4 years, 3 months ago 3

 

Last weekend I had another milestone in my walk with Him.He opened new places in my heart!  As we fellowshipped, and worshipped, prayed, and praised Him a new freedom started to take over in me.  I’m sure that I, like many others, have worried about how people might react when we come fully out in the open about our faith. I still realize that can happen, but any apprehension I had,  has been removed.  In conversations with various people at the workshop, I came to see how boldness, begets boldness, (to use a good Old Testament word!). But it’s true, when we are open up and are forth right, it opens the door for others to be the same.

 

It has been my dream for a long time to see a workshop opportunity like this arrive.  The response has been wonderful, and it makes Jim and I want to work even harder to make it better and better.  You can reast assured that we will do just that.

 

Thanks you Father for this opportuynity to serve you….

 

the pilgrim