Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Whine Flu- Part 4


The 5th & final way to vaccinate ourselves from the negative effects of the Whine Flu is this...

5. Don’t strike the rock, speak in faith.
Numbers 20:7-12, "God spoke to Moses: "Take the staff. Assemble the community, you and your brother Aaron. Speak to that rock that's right in front of them and it will give water. You will bring water out of the rock for them; congregation and cattle will both drink." Moses took the staff away from God's presence, as commanded. He and Aaron rounded up the whole congregation in front of the rock. Moses spoke: "Listen, rebels! Do we have to bring water out of this rock for you?" With that Moses raised his arm and slammed his staff against the rock—once, twice. Water poured out. Congregation and cattle drank. God said to Moses and Aaron, "Because you didn't trust me, didn't treat me with holy reverence in front of the People of Israel, you two aren't going to lead this company into the land that I am giving them."

The Israelites were God's chosen people who were miraculously led out of slavery in Egypt to the land that was promised to their forefathers. God wanted them to have a place where He could bless them, a land that had all that they would ever need. The story moved along great until the Israelites failed to learn a very simple lesson along the way. What began as a 2-3 week journey toward the promised land, ended up taking 40 years. The sin that hindered an entire generation was that of complaining. They had a serious case of the whine flu. In the context of this story, the million plus Israelites were busy complaining because they were in the middle of the desert with no water. Though God had miraculously provided food & water just a short time before, they began to complain once again and badger Moses. Moses, their leader, responded in a way that many of us do towards life's circumstances. He responded with fear, anxiety & anger. God told Moses to walk up to a rock & command water to come out, but Moses chose to strike the rock instead. Moses determined to follow his own path instead of obeying God in faith. He allowed his bottled up anxiety, fear & anger to dictate his actions. God wanted to teach Him to speak in faith, but instead he struck the rock in anger. I want to challenge you to make a decision to fill your mind & heart with faith (God's Word)! Make a decision right now that regardless of your circumstance, that you will speak in faith. Don't strike the rock in the midst of your circumstance! Make a decision to speak positive words of life & faith, regardless of the whining around you!

"Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Eph. 4:29

From our mid-week service- "How To Affair Proof Your Marriage."

When I first got married I read a book by Dr. Willard Harley, a counselor in Minnesota, called, "His Needs, Her Needs." He has identified through thousands of couples what he thinks are the top 5 needs of most men and the top 5 needs of most women. I also read a book by Dr. Gary Chapman called, "The 5 Love Languages." Both of these books have been incredibly helpful in my marriage because they teach you what the needs of your spouse are & how you can meet them. I encourage you to take the time to click on the book titles above & discover more about them when you are finished reading the post below. The thoughts below are from a our mid-week series that we have adapted from Rick Warren based on the 10 commandments. Great stuff!

THE PREVENTION: SIX STEPS

1. MAKE A COMMITMENT TO GOD'S STANDARDS.
"How can a (person) keep his way pure? By living according to your Word." Ps. 119:9
"Be faithful to your own wife and give your love to her alone." Pr. 5:15 (GN)
2. MAGNIFY THE CONSEQUENCES.
"The one who commits adultery is an utter fool, for he destroys his own soul." Pr. 6:32 (GN) "...adultery will cost a man all he has." Pr. 6:26 (GN)
"God will judge those who are immoral and those who commit adultery." Heb. 13:4b
3. MAINTAIN MY MARRIAGE
"A man should fulfill his duty as a husband and a woman should fulfill her duty as a wife, and each should satisfy the other's needs." I Cor. 7:3 (GN)
"Do not cheat each other of normal sexual intercourse ... or you will expose yourselves to the obvious temptation of Satan." I Cor. 7:5 (Ph)
4. MANAGE MY MIND
How Affairs Develop
1st Accepting sinful thoughts in my mind
2nd Emotional, non-physical involvement
3rd Physical involvement
4th Rationalizing the affair
"Temptation is the pull of a person's own evil thoughts and wishes. These evil thoughts lead to evil actions and afterwards to death." James 1:14-15 (LB)
"Turn your back on lustful desires and give your positive attention to goodness, integrity, love, and peace..." 2 Tim. 2:22 (Ph)
"I want you to be wise about what is good and innocent about evil." Rom 16:19
5. MAINTAIN PROPER RELATIONSHIPS
"But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality." Eph. 5:3
6. MINIMIZE THE OPPORTUNITY
"So be careful! If you are thinking, `Oh, I would never behave like that - let this be a warning to you. For you too may fall into sin." I Cor. 10:12 (LB)
"Bad company corrupts good character." I Cor. 15:33
"Guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with your wife." Mal. 2:15

THE PATHWAY BACK TO PURITY
1. Acknowledge the SIN. (Ps. 51:1-4)
2. End the relationship IMMEDIATELY!
3. Avoid ALL contact with the person from now on. Do whatever it takes to do this!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Whine Flu- Part 3


HOW TO CONQUER THE WHINE FLU
Below are 4 thoughts about how you can vaccinate yourself against the whine flu once and for all.

1. ADMIT THAT YOU HAVE A PROBLEM.
"A man who refuses to admit his mistakes can never be successful. But if he confesses and forsakes them, he gets another chance." Prov. 28:13 (LB)
Admit it is a problem for you, not for other people, but for you. Often the most difficult part in learning how to handle complaining is recognizing it in yourself. If someone recorded you for a week, what would it reveal about your speech. How much time do you spend griping, grumping, complaining, arguing, and saying "life stinks." You've got to admit it's a problem for me.

2. ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY.
"Some people ruin themselves by their own stupid mistakes and then blame the Lord." Prov. 19:3 (GN)
When I bring problems into my life, I have no legitimate right to complain. Many times complaining is just an excuse to be irresponsible and to not accept the fact that I caused this situation. We reap what we sow. When I reap what I sow I have no legitimate right to complain about the results.

3. DEVELOP AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE.
"Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." I Thess. 5:18
I develop the attitude of gratitude and when I learn to be grateful for what I have. It's a tremendous antidote for complaining. Whenever we are complaining, we are usually being ungrateful. You can focus on either the negative or the positive.

4. LOOK FOR GOD'S HAND IN THE CIRCUMSTANCE
"This small and temporary trouble we suffer will bring us a tremendous and eternal glory, much greater than the trouble. So we fix our attention, not on the things that are seen, but on the things that are unseen. What is seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever." 2 Cor. 4:17-18 (GN)
The reason why over and over in the Bible we are told not to complain is this, complaining is, in essence, rebellion against God. When I complain about my circumstances that are beyond my control I'm really saying "If I were God things would be different. If I were in charge the whole human race would be much better." That's rebellion and that's why it's so serious. God says don't do it.

Tomorrow I'm going to share the 5th thought about overcoming the whine flu. It is the most powerful of the 5, so don't miss it!

The Whine Flu- Part 2

Take your temperature today & determine if you are coming down with the whine flu! Are you...

1. THE "COMPLAINER": Favorite saying, "It's not fair."
(David) "Have I been wasting my time Why take all the trouble to be pure? All I get out of it is trouble and woe." Psalm 73:13 (LB)
These people wake up negative. They rise and whine. David whines all through the Psalms. Life is not fair. God never said it is going to be fair. In fact, fairness ended in the garden of Eden & will not return until Heaven. As long as you complain about the fact that life is not fair it only makes you more miserable. But it will never change the fact that life is not always fair. Complaining does not work.

2. THE "MARTYR": Favorite saying, "No one appreciates me."
"Moses said to the Lord, `Why pick on me, to give me the burden of a people like this? I can't carry this nation by myself! ... If you're going to treat me like this, please kill me right now -- it will be a kindness! Let me out of this impossible situation!" Numbers 11:11-15 (LB)
These people are pros at having pity parties. When they are sick or under pressure they want everybody to know about it. How do you react when you don't get your way? Do you mount a complaining campaign? If you aren't sure, check your facebook & twitter posts!

3. THE "CYNIC": Favorite saying, "Nothing will ever change."
(Solomon) "Life is useless ... you spend your life working and what do you have to show for it? ... the world stays just the same ... what has been done before will be done again." Eccl. 1:2-4,9 (GN)
This kind of attitude is the kiss of death and will destroy the possibility of hope and change. What's the use?

4. THE "PERFECTIONIST": Favorite saying, "Is that the best you can do?"
"A nagging wife is like water going drip, drip, drip on a rainy day." Prov. 27:15 (GN)
"Better to live out in the desert than with a nagging, complaining wife." Prov. 21:19 (GN)
Nothing is ever right for this person. It is never good enough. This refers to husbands, too! Are you a nagging perfectionist? Nothing is ever right. Always arguing. Nothing destroys the home faster than complaining. Nothing destroys the harmony of a marriage faster than complaining. Nagging doesn't work. It just makes everybody upset. If your kids are complaining continuously, ask yourself if you are setting the example.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Whine Flu- Part 1



This weekend I shared a message that was challenging and hopefully encouraging to our church family. This week I want to talk about a very important topic. I'm using the imagery of the whine flu to help us think about our words & our future. God has given every person incredible power through the use of our words. Maybe you aren't where you want to be in life today. The truth is that the words that you've spoken in the past are directly tied to your present & your future. The Bible teaches us that our words are simply the overflow from what is in our hearts. What we say is ultimately what we believe. What you believe is where your faith is established. If you're mouth is full of negativity & complaining, your heart is full of doubt. The Apostle Paul reminds us in PHILIPPIANS 2:14-15 "Do everything without complaining or arguing (WHINING), so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe." Tomorrow I'll be giving you the 4 indicators of whether or not you have the whine flu!