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Author Topic: PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE 40 DAYS OF PURPOSE  (Read 9852 times)
lenore
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« on: April 12, 2005, 11:13:35 pm »

 :DHi assemblyboard people.

On April 2nd our church kicked off the six week series on the 40 days of purpose, based on the book the PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE by Rick Warren.
Last night was the second of our small group studies. This is for outreach and for those who doesnt attend the Sunday School, or teach SUnday School, and cannot attend Sunday School, It is where our church is participating in it.

We as a whole church is on day 10 so far. The first purpose of WORSHIP.

Enclosed you will find highlights of what I am learning so far.
I have reworded from the book to personalize it to 'ME' OR 'I' factor.

40 DAYS OF PURPOSE:
Week One: Chapters 1 to 7
WHAT ON EARTH AM I HERE FOR?

IT ALL STARTS WITH GOD:
IT'S NOT ABOUT YOU
**I were born by  his purpose and  for his purpose
**I only exists because God wills that I exist
**I was made for God , My life is about letting God use me.
**It is about becoming what God created me to be.
**God is not just the starting point in my life, he is the source of my life.
**God was thinking of me long before I even thought about him.
**God planned my conception.

WITHOUT GOD  - LIFE MAKES NO SENSE.

*I WAS NOT AN ACCIDENT:
**I was conceived in the mind of God
**I am alive because God wanted to create me.
**God prescribed every single detail of my body
**God made me for a reason,
**God choose when I was to be born, and how long I will live
**God planned where I will be born and where I would live
**God decided how I would be born, and who were to be my parents
**God never makes mistakes
**God has a reason for everything he creates.
**God created me out of his love
**God thought of me before he made the world
**God designed the planet so I can live in it.
**I was created as a special object of God's love
**I am not an accident

                                     WHAT DRIVES YOUR LIFE?

*My life has a driving force.

Many People are driven by:
GUILT:
---Guilt driven people are manipulated by memories. They allow their past to control their future.
**I allow my past to control me.
**I unconsciously punish myself  

RESENTMENT AND ANGER:
---They hold on to hurts and never get over them. Instead of releasing their pain through forgiveness , they rehearse it over and over in their mind
-those who have hurt you in the past cannot continue to hurt you unless you hold on to the pain through resentment.
***I have to let go off my pain and not allow those who have hurt me to control me.

FEAR:
---Often miss great opportunities because they are afraid to venture out
-fear is a self imposed prison that will keep them from becoming what God intends for you to be.

MATERIALISM:
--The desire to acquire becomes the whole goal of their lives.

NEED FOR APPROVAL:
--Allow the expectation of others to control their lives. Many adults are still trying to get their parents approval.
-Always worried what others think of you.
-key to failure is to try to please everyone.
-being controlled by the opinion of others is a guarentee to miss God's purposes for your life.

** I need to stop looking for approval from my parents and siblings.

                     THE BENEFITS OF PURPOSE DRIVING LIVING
--nothing matters more than knowing God's purposes for my life.

KNOWING YOUR PURPOSE:

GIVES MEANING TO MY LIFE:
** I was made to  have meaning.
When I have meaning I can bear almost anything.
Without God , life has no purpose, and without purpose , life has no meaning. Without meaning , life has no significance or hope.
Hope is as essential to your life as air and water.
I need hope to cope
Hope comes from having a purpose

SIMPLIFIES MY LIFE:
**it defines what I do and what I don't do.
My purpose becomes the standard I use to evaluate which activities are essential and which aren't.
I have just enough time to do God's will.
Purpose driven life leads to peace of mind.

FOCUSES MY LIFE:
It concentrates my effort and energy on what is important.
I become more effective by being selective.
If I want my life to have impact, I must focus it, by only doing what matters the most.

MOTIVATES MY LIFE:
Purpose always produces passion.

PREPARES ME FOR ETERNITY:
Ultimately matters most is what God says.
I must use my time to build an eternal legacy.
I was put her to prepare for eternity
One day I will stand before God, and God will do an audit on my life, before I will be permitted to enter eternity.
God will be asking me two questions:
1. What did I do with his Son , Jesus Christ in my life,
Did I accept what Jesus did for me, and did I learn to love and trust Jesus

2. What did I do with what God gave me. What did I do with the resources God gave me? Did I use them for God's purposes?



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lenore
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« Reply #1 on: April 12, 2005, 11:17:14 pm »

Part two of Section 1

MADE TO LAST FOREVER:

This life is not all there is, Earth is the staging  area. This life is preparation for the.
** I was made to last forever.
**God designed me in his image, to live for eternity.
**The reason I feel I should live forever, is that God wired my brain with that desire!
**My earthly body is just a temporary residence for my spirit.
**My relationship with God on earth will determine my relationship to him in eternity. If I learn to love and trust God's son Jesus, I will be invited to spend the rest of eternity with him.
**I need to realize that life is just preparation for eternity, I should begin to live differently. I should start living in light of eternity. And that will colour how I handle every relationship, task and circumstance.
*The closer I live to God, the smaller everything else appears.
*when I live in light of eternity, my values will change.
*my priorities are reordered.
*Death is not my termination, but my transition into eternity, so thee are eternal consequences to everything I do on earth. Every act of my life strikes some chord that will vibrate in eternity.
The most damaging aspect of contemporary living is short term thinking.
*I know that right now God is preparing an eternal home for me.
*I will enjoy unbroken fellowship with God, and he will enjoy me for an unlimited endless forever.
*God has a purpose for my life on earth. God offers me an opportunity beyond my lifetime.
· I should live each day as if it were the last day of my life

SEEING LIFE FROM GOD'S VIEW

James 4:14: What is your life

The way you see life shapes your life.
How do you see your life?---
How you picture life? The image of your life metaphor. It's the view of life that  hold , consciously or unconsciously, in your mind.
Your unspoken life metaphor influences your life more than you realize. It determines my expectations, my values, my relationships, my goals, and my priorities.
What is your view of life?---
-to fulfill the purpose of God made me for.
God's view of life:---
------ Life is a test, life is a trust, and life is a temporary assignment.

Life on earth is a test:
--God continually test people's character , faith, obedience, love, integrity and loyalty.
Character is developed and revealed by tests, and all of life is a test.
I am always being tested.
God constantly watches my response to people, problems, success, conflict, illness, disappointments, and even the weather. God watches the simplest actions.
God tests my faith through problems, tests my hope by how I handle possessions, and tests my love through people.
Every day is an important day, and every second is a growth opportunity to deepen your character, to demonstrate love, and to depend on God. All of them have eternal implications.
God wants me to pass the test of life. God will never allows the test I face to be greater than the grace He gives me to handle them.
Every time I pass a test. God notices it.

Life on earth is a Trust:
-all gifts from God , He has entrusted to my care and management.
Everything I enjoy is to be treated as a trust God has placed in my hands.
At the end of my life on earth, I will be evaluated and rewarded according to how well I handled what God entrusted to me. Everything I do , has eternal implications

LIFE IS A TEMPORARY ASSIGNMENT

Earth is only a temporary residence.
God says his children are to think differently about life from the way unbelievers do.
My identity is in eternity, my homeland is heaven.
I am Christ's ambassador.
I am preparing for something better.
Earth is not my final home, I am created for something much better.
Eternal values should become deciding factors of my decisions.
My time on earth is not the complete story of my life.
It takes faith to live on earth as a foreigner.
At death I wont leave home, I will be going hom.

THE REASON FOR EVERYTHING

It's all for him.
Reason for everything that exists, including me, God made it all for his glory.
Everything created by God, reflects his glory.
Creation reveals our Creator's glory.
I am commanded to recognize his glory
I am commanded to honor his glory
I am commanded to declare his glory
I am commanded to praise his glory
I am commanded to reflect his glory
I am commanded to live for his glory.
I own God every honour I can possibly give.
Living for God's glory is the greatest achievement I can accomplish in my life.
It ought to be my top supreme goal of my life.

We bring God glory by worshipping him:
-Worship is my first responsibility to God.
-God wants my worship to be motivated by love, thanksgiving and delight.
-When I use my life for God's glory, everything I do can become an act of worship.

We bring God glory by loving other believers:
-I am a part of God's family.
-It is my responsibility to learn how to love as God Does, because God is love.

We bring God glory by becoming like Christ:
-God wants me to grow to spiritual maturity.
-The more I develop Christ like character, the more I will bring glory to God.

We bring God glory by serving others with our gifts:
-God has given me uniquely  designed gifts, talents, skills, and abilities.

We bring God glory by telling others about him.
-God expects me to share Jesus with others.


God is inviting me to live for his glory by fulfilling the purpose he made me for.
Real life is committing myself completely to Jesus Christ.
I am to believe God loves me and made me for his purpose.
I am to believe I was not an accident
I am to believe I was made to last forever
I am to believe God has choosen me to have a relationship with Jesus, who died on the cross for me.
I am to believe that no matter what I have done, God wants to forgive  me.

I am to receive Jesus into my life as my Lord and Saviour
I am to receive his forgiveness from my sins
I am to receive his Spirit , who will give me the power to fulfill my life purposes.


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lenore
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2005, 09:25:46 pm »

April 15

The highlights I am sharing with you from my study in the Purpose Driven Life  I have personalize them.

Chapters 8 to 14 Highlights:

YOU WERE PLANNED FOR GOD'S PLEASURE
Mark 12:30 Love the Lord you God, with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.

Chapter 8: PLANNED FOR GOD'S PLEASURE
Anything you do that brings pleasure to God is an act of worship
Worship is far more than music
I WAS PLANNED FOR GOD'S PLEASURE
'Psalm 149:4 - The Lord takes pleasure in his people.

Chapter 9: WHAT MAKES GOD SMILE
What God wants most from you is a relationship
Trusting God completely means having faith that he knows what is best for your life.
God enjoys watching every detail of your life.
GOD SMILES WHEN I TRUST HIM
Psalm 147:11 The Lord is pleased with those who worship him and trust his love.

Chapter 10: THE HEART OF WORSHIP
Offering yourself to God is what worship is all about
Surrender is best demonstrated in obedience and trust.
Surrender is not the best way to live: it is the only way to live. Nothing else works.
THE HEART OF WORSHIP IS SURRENDER
Romans 6:13 Surrender your whole being to him to be used for righteous purposes.

Chapter 11: BECOMING BEST FRIENDS WITH GOD
Knowing and loving God is our greatest privilege, and being known and loved is God's greatest pleasure.
Everything you do can be spending time with God, if he is invited to be a part of it and you stay aware of his presence.
GOD WANTS TO BE MY BEST FRIEND
Psalm 25:14  Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him.

Chapter 12: DEVELOPING YOUR FRIENDSHIP WITH GOD
God doesn't expect you to be perfect, but he does insist on complete honesty.
Bitterness is the greatest barrier to friendship with God.
The more you become God's friend, the more you will care about the things he cares about.
I'M AS CLOSE TO GOD, AS I CHOOSE TO BE.
James 4:8   Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you.






Chapter 13:WORSHIP THAT PLEASES GOD
God pleasing worship is deeply emotional and deeply doctrinal. We use both our hearts and our heads.
The best style of worship is the one that most authentically represents your love for God.
Real worship is rooted in the Word.
GOD WANTS ALL OF ME
Mark 12:30  Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.

Chapter 14: WHEN GOD SEEMS DISTANT
God admits that sometimes he hides his face from us.
The most common mistakes Christians make in worship today is seeking an experience rather than seeking God.
When you feel abandoned by God yet continue to trust him, you worship him in the deepest way.
GOD IS REAL, NO MATTER HOW I FEEL
Hebrew 13:5   For God has said, I will never leave you, I will never abandoned you.


PSALM 149:4
THE LORD TAKES PLEASURE
IN HIS PEOPLE




PSALM 147:11
THE LORD IS PLEASED WITH
THOSE WHO WORSHIP HIM
AND TRUST HIS LOVE




ROMANS 6:13
SURRENDER YOUR WHOLE BEING
TO HIM TO BE USED FOR
RIGHTEOUS PURPOSES






PSALM 25:14
FRIENDSHIP WITH GOD IS RESERVED
FOR THOSE WHO
REVERENCE HIM




JAMES 4:8
DRAW CLOSE TO GOD
AND GOD WILL DRAW CLOSE
TO YOU




MARK 12:30
LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND
AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH




HEBREWS 13:5
FOR GOD HAS SAID,
'I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU
I WILL NEVER ABANDON YOU

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lenore
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2005, 09:27:43 pm »

April 15
Section two: WORSHIP

YOU WERE PLANNED FOR GOD'S PLEASURE
For God has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for his own glory Isaiah 61:3

Anything I do that brings pleasure to God is an act of worship.
What God wants most from me is a relationship
Trusting God completely means having faith that he knows what is best for my life.
God enjoys watching every detail of my life
Offering myself to God is what worship is all about
Surrender is best demonstrated in obedience and trust.
Surrender is not the best way to life; it is the only way to live. Nothing else works.
Knowing and loving God is our greatest privilege and being known and loved is God's greatest pleasure.
Everything you do can be spending time with God. If he is invited to be a part of it and you stay aware of his presence.
God doesn't expect you to be perfect, but he does insist on complete honesty.
Bitterness is the greatest barrier to friendship with God.
The more you become God's friend, the more you will care about the things he cares about.
God pleasing worship is deeply emotional and deeply doctrinal. We use both our hearts and our heads.
The best style of worship is the one that most authentically represents my  love for God.
Real worship is rooted in the Word.
God admits that sometimes he hides his face from us.
The most common mistake Christians make in worship today is seeking an experience rather than seeking God.
When you feel abandoned by God yet continue to trust him, you worship him in the deepest way.

God wants to be my best friend
I was made to live in God's continual presence.
Sacrifice of Jesus made it possible to have friendship with God.
God deeply desires that we know him intimately.
Knowing and loving God is our greatest privilege, and being known and loved is God's greatest pleasure.
Friendship with God is built by sharing all my life experiences with him.
God wants to be included in every thing, including activities, conversations, problems, and thoughts. Everything I can do can be spending time with God.
The key to friendship with God , is changing my attitude towards what I do.
No place is closer to God than the place where you are in the presence of God.
Create reminders to regular bring my thoughts back to the awareness that God is with me.
Praying as if I am breathing. Praying becomes the root of my heart.
Thinking on God's word, focus my thinking on God.

I  are as close to God as I choose to be
-work to develop my friendship with God
I need to honestly share my feeling with God
I must trust him
I need to learn to care what God cares about
I need to desire his friendship above all else.
God listens to the passionate words of his friends.
God uses everything for my good.
God always acts in my best interest.
I must choose to obey God in faith. I should obey God because I love him.
The closer I follow God, the deeper my friendship with become.
True friendship is active.  God is pleased when I do small things for him out of obedience. God notices them and considers them acts of worship.
I must choose to value what God values.  To become a friend of God , I must care about all the people around me whom God caares about.
I must desire friendship with God more than anything else.  Nothing matters more, that passionate friendship with God.  It is a relationship that lasts forever.

God wants all of you
God asks for all of my heart, all of my soul, all of my mind, and all of my strength.
God desires my full devotion.

God is real, no matter how I feel.
Faith pleases God.
I can pour out my  heart to God, unload every emotion and feeling.
I need to focus on God's unchanging character.
I can trust God to keep his promises.
Jesus gave up everything , so I can have everything.


===============================================================
WORSHIPPING GOD IS:

Bringing pleasure to God .
Anything I do that bring pleasure to God is an act of worship.
Worship is a lifestyle.
Anything offered to God in spirit and in truth, it is an act of worship.
We worship for God's benefit.
Worship should be my life.
Worship is all about falling in love with Jesus.
Trust is an act of worship.
Any act of obedience is also an act of worship.
Every act of enjoyment becomes an act of worship when you thank God for it.
The heart of worship is surrender.
True worship is bringing God pleasure
Offering myself to God is what worship is all about.
God is pleased when my worship is accurate, based upon the truth of Scripture.
God is pleased when my worship is authentic.  I must worship in spirit. Worship is my spirit responding to God's spirit.
Worship must be genuine and heartfelt.
When I worship, God looks past my words and see the attitude of my heart
God gave me emotions to worship him with my deep feelings.
God wants me to be myself.
God is pleased when my worship is thoughful.
God is pleased when my worship is practical.  God wants me to live for him.
Real worship costs. Worship takes effort and energy.
The heart of the matter is matter of the heart.
Deepest level of worship is praising God despite of pain.





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al Hartman
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« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2005, 06:44:26 am »



WOW!!!

I was going to select a few points from your last two posts & comment on them, but I could hardly find any that I didn't want to discuss.

I hope you won't be disappointed if you get very little response to these posts, Lenore.  Generally today's Christians seem to want to talk about almost anything that will distract from the reality of a close personal relationship with Jesus Christ.  I don't mean just on this BB, but everywhere I know of.

The Christian bookstores are virtually flooded with materials all about doing things for God, or in God's name.  Some are deep, some extremely clever, some tug at your heartstrings...

But start talking about being intimately involved One-on-one with Jesus Christ & you'll be labeled a fanatic, falsely pious, sanctimonious, and more.  The definitions of these terms mean "If you do or say something that I would be a phony for saying or doing, then you must be a phony because you couldn't possibly be more spiritual than I am."

People who may say such things about you are to be taken seriously.  God has crossed their paths with yours for a reason.  Weigh their words, consider their accusations, and ask God for clarity in evaluating your own thoughts in light of theirs.  Be willing to be proved wrong, but always do what you believe is right in God's sight.  The final word is not to be got from the court of popular approval, but from the Lord Himself.

Thanks for sharing these, Lenore.

In Christ,
al
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lenore
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« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2005, 01:36:24 am »

April 24th.

The enclosed is the outline for the sunday morning sermons, in alignment for the 40 days of purpose. It is for the last three weeks:..................>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Purpose Driven Life Sunday Sermons:

Planned for God's Pleasure
Rev. 4:11
Matt.22:37-38
God created Everything for his purpose
God Created All things
Love the Lord your God …
This is the first and greatest command

My first purpose in life is to WORSHIP GOD
We need to in life. Love God Back and to know God
Rom.12:1 'in view of God's mercy offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God…which is your spiritual worship

WORSHIP IS RESPONDING TO GOD'S LOVE
WORSHIP IS GIVING BACK TO GOD
Mark 12:30

God wants me to LOVE HIM
THOUGHTFUL with my mind
PASSIONATELY with my heart and soul
PRACTICALLY with my strength
Use of our abilities we have to us.

WORSHIP IS FOCUS ATTENTION ON GOD
Ps. 139:3
Rom.12:2: Fix your Attention on God…how do we do that.
Consistent Quiet Time
Matt. 6: find a secluded place and just be there as simply and honestly as you can

Constant conversation
Ps. 105:4
Seek His face always
Is. 26:3
You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, whose thoughts are fix on you.

WORSHIP IS EXPRESSING MY AFFECTION TO GOD
1 John 4:19

Ex. 34:14
He is God who is Passionate about his relationship with you
You can give without loving but you cannot love with giving
Rom. 6:13



WORSHIP IS ABILITIES FOR GOD

   Col. 3:23

Rom. 12:1 Take your everyday ordinary life and placed it before God.

God made me to enjoy me.
God wanted me alive
Respond to God when I come to know how much God loves me.
God always make the first move when it comes to Love.
Whenever we give back to God, we worship him
Offer - what we give to God.
We are to give God our love
God doesn't have it unless we give it.
Our Attention
Our Affection
Our Abilities
These are things we hang on to .
He has given them
We are to focus on God.
God has focused on us.
Chose to Focus on God
We can say I love you to God because we know of his love for us.
We should want our relationship to go deeper with God.


FORMED FOR GOD'S FAMILY SUNDAY SERMON

Heb. 2:10
God wanted a family

We choose to love God - choice to commit to one another. There will be people from every generation throughout history as part of the family.
Created to last forever
Salvation be in God's family forever
Love one another
Makes us more like God
Get along together
Created and practice for eternity.

1 John 4:21
Church is a family
We need to conduct ourselves in that family
Friendship is building one another up in sharing.
Choosing to get involved within the church
As committed to one another as we are to Jesus Christ

Eph:1:5 He predestined us to be adopted as his sons thru Jesus Christ, accordance with his PLEASURE and WILL>

1 Peter 2:17: "Love your SPIRITUAL FAMILY"

My 2nd purpose in life is FELLOWSHIP
Fellowship is Loving God's family.
1 Tim 3:14-15: I'm writing so that you will know how to live in the House of God.
--Church is a family

4 Levels of Fellowship
MEMBERSHIP: CHOOSING TO BELONE
Eph 2:19 The Christian life is not just a matter of BELIEVING but BELONG as well.
Roman 12:5: In Christ we who are many form one Body and EACH MEMBER belongs to all the others.

1 Cor.12:13

FRIENDSHIP: LEARNING TO SHARE
Acts2:44-46
Our EXPERIENCE  Prov. 27:17
Our HOMES  1 Peter 4:9
Our PROBLEMS Gal 6:2



PARTNERSHIP: DOING MY PART
1Cor 3:9 Partner working together

Eph 4:16

KINGSHIP: LOVING BELIEVERS LIKE FAMILY
Romans 12:10 Be devoted to each other like a loving family

1 John 3:16
1John 3:14

CREATED TO BECOME LIKE CHRIST SUNDAY SERMON

Romans 8:29

Ephesians 4:15
Speaking the truth in love, we will in all things GROW UP into him who is the head, that is CHRIST.

My 3rd purpose in life is BECOME LIKE CHRIST
Romans 8:28

THREE UNEXPECTED TOOLS:
God uses TROUBLE to teach us to TRUST HIM

Romans 5:3-5
Mark 14:32
Keep a SPIRITUAL JOURNAL
Numbers 33:2
Remember REWARDS
2 Cor 4;17

God uses our TEMPTATIONS to teach us to OBEY HIM
Matt 4:1 to 4:10
Keep focused on GOOD THOUGHTS
Phil 4:8
Get a SPIRITUAL PARTNER
Ecc. 4:9-10

God uses our TRESPASSES to teach us FORGIVENESS
Matt 27:39-44
Luke 23:34
Remember God has FORGIVEN US
Eph. 4:32
Remember God is IN CONTROL
Gen. 50:20

Romans 8:17
Phil 2:5







To be come perfect in Christ is a life time process.
Are we in Word of God to help us .
God speaks when the word of God is open
God Doesn't speak when the word of God is closed.

God uses People to learn from each other, to encourage , to grow together.

Earth is not heaven.
Earth is not a place of comfort.
Every problem has a purpose. All have been tempted the same way Jesus has been tempted.
We will  never out grow temptation
Jesus confronted temptations with the scriptures.

What do we love more than God?
We shouldn't just resist temptation, because our focus will be on that temptation.
We should walk away from temptation.



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lenore
Guest
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2005, 02:56:16 am »

April 24
Here is Section Three of the 40 days of Purpose:
Highlights of Chapter 15 to 21:
YOU WERE FORMED FOR GOD'S FAMILY.
John 15:5   I am the vine , and you are the branches.

I will probably dividing this section into three parts:

PART ONE

YOU WERE FORMED FOR GOD'S FAMILY.
ROMANS 12:5  …so in Christ we who are many form one body and each member belongs to all the others.

Chapter 15: FORMED FOR GOD'S FAMILY.
Your spiritual family is even more important than your physical family because it will last forever.
Being included in God's family is the highest honour and the greatest privilege you will ever receive.

I was formed for God's family.
Ephesians 1:5…His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ.

Chapter 16: WHAT MATTERS MOST
Relationships are what life is all about.
The greatest gift you can give someone is your time.

Life is all about love.
Galatians 5:14… The entire law is summed up in a single command 'Love your neighbour as your self'.

Chapter 17: A PLACE TO BELONG
We discover our role in life through our relationship with others.
The church will outlive the universe, and so will your role in it.
Jesus has not promised to build your ministry, he has promised to build his church.

I am called to belong, not just believe.
Romans 12:5…In Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

Chapter 18:  EXPERIENCING LIFE TOGETHER
Real fellowship happens when people get honest about who they are and what is happening in their lives.
Every time you understand and affirm someone's feelings you build fellowship.

I need others in my life
Galatians 6:2….Share each other's troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ.








Chapter 19:  CULTIVATING COMMUNITY
When conflict is handled correctly we grow closer to each other.
Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it is thinking of yourself less.
The fellowship of the church is more important than any individual.

Community requires commitment
1 John 3:16.. We understand what love is when we realize that Christ gave his life for me. That means we must give our lives for other believers.


Chapter 20:  RESTORING BROKEN FELLOWSHIP
God expects you to make the first move.
In resolving conflict how you say it is as important as what you say
Reconciliation focuses on the relationship, while resolution focuses on the problem.

Relationship are always worth restoring.
Romans 12:18…Do everything possible on your part to live in peace with everybody.

Chapter 21: PROTECTING YOUR CHURCH
Nothing on earth is more valuable to God than his church.
We must passionately love the church in spite of its imperfections.
We protect the fellowship when we honour those who serve us by leading.

It is my responsibility to protect the unity of my church.
Romans 14:19…Let us concentrate on the things which make for harmony and the growth of our fellowship together.
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lenore
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« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2005, 02:58:44 am »

PART TWO:

CHAPTER 15 TO 17

CHAPTER 15 TO 22
Personalized lessons from God

Formed for God's family

I was formed for God's family
God created me to be a part of the family he wanted.
Because God is love He treasures his relationships. His very nature is relational, and he identifies himself in family terms. Father, Son and Spirit.
God didn't need a family, God desired a family, so God devised a plane to create me, bring me into his family and share with me all he has.

When I place my faith in Christ, God become my Father , I am his child, and other believers are my brothers and my sisters, and the church becomes my spiritual family. My family of God includes all believers past, the present and the future.
My spiritual family, my relationship with other believers will continue throughout eternity.
As a child of God, I get to share in the family fortunee.
I will get to be with God forever
I will be completely changed to be like Christ
I will be freed from all pain, death, and suffering
I will be rewarded and reassigned positions of service
I will get to share in Christ glory.
This is my eternal inheritance.
My eternal inheritance is priceless, pure, permanent, and protected. No one can take it away from me. It cannot be destroyed.
I am a part of God's family and because Jesus makes me holy, God is proud of me.
Being included in God's family is the highest honour, the greatest privilege I will ever receive. Nothing else comes close,

What Matters The most:
Life is about love.
The most important lesson he wants me to learn on earth is how to love. It is in loving that we are most like him, so love is the foundation of every command he has given to me.
God wants me to love everyone, but he is particularly concerned that I love others in his family.
Because God wants his family to be known for its love more than anything else, Jesus said love for each other. In heaven I will enjoy God's family forever, First I have some tough work on earth to do, to prepare myself for an eternity of love.
God wants me to be a regular, close fellowship with other believers so I can develop the skill of loving.
Love should be my top priority, primary objective and greatest ambition.
Life without love is worthless.
Love will last forever
Love leaves a legacy
Love is the secret of a lasting heritage.
We will be evaluated on our love.
…one way God measures spiritual maturity is by the quality of my relationships
God will review how I have treated other people, particularly those in need…
..when I transfer into eternity, all I am taking with me is my character…

The importance of things can be measured by how much time I am willing to invest in them. The more time I give to something, the more I reveal its importance and value to me.
Time is my most precious gift because I only have a set amount of it. When I give someone my time, I am giving them a portion of my life that I will never get back. My time is my life. That is why the greatest gift I can give someone is my time.
Relationships take time and effort.
The essence of love is how much I will give of myself.
The most desired gift is love, It is the focused attention. Love concentrates so intently on another that I will forget myself at that moment. Whenever I give of my time I am making a sacrifice and sacrifice is the essence of love.
I can give without loving but I cannot love without giving. Love means giving up, yielding my preference, comfort, goals, security, money, energy, or time for the benefit of someone else.
Knowing that one day I will stand before God!
The best use of life is love.
The best expression of love is time.
The best time to love is now.
LIFE IS ALL ABOUT LOVE.

A PLACE TO BELONG

I was called to belong
I was created for community. I was fashioned for fellowshi
I was formed for a family.
I cannot fulfill God's purpose by myself.

In God's family, I am connected to every other believer.
I belong to others in eternity.
Following Christ includes BELONGING.
I AM A MEMBER OF HIS BODY.
Being a member of the church meant being to a vital organ of a living body, an indespensable, interconnected part of the Body of Christ.
The church is a body, an organism.
I was created for a specific role.
I will discover my role in life, through my relationships with others.
The church is God's agenda for the world.
The church is indestructible and will exist for eternity.
The church is so significant that Jesus died on the cross for it.
God commands me to love the church as much as I love Jesus.
The Bible says. A Christian without a church home is like an organ without a body.

A CHURCH FAMILY IDENTIFIES ME AS A GENUINE BELIEVER.
Together with others are His Body.

A CHURCH FAMILY MOVES YOU OUT OF SELF CENTERED ISOLATIONS
The local church is the classroom for learning how to get along in God's family.
As a participating member I will learn to care about others and share the experience of others.
Only regular contact with ordinary, imperfect believers can we learn real fellowship and experience the New Testament truth of being connected and dependent on each other.
Biblicial fellowship is being as committed to each other as we are to Jesus Christ. God expects me to give my life for others.

A CHURCH FAMILY HELPS ME TO DEVELOP SPIRITUAL MUSCLE
One another occurs in the N.T. over 50 X's
I am commanded to love  each other
Encourage each other
Pray for each other
Admonish each other
Greet each other
Serve each other
Teach each other
Accept each other
Submit to each other
Devoted to each other
These are my family responsibilities that God expects me to fulfill through a local family.
Real maturity shows up in relationships. I will grow faster and stronger by learning from others and being accountable to others.

THE BODY OF CHRIST NEEDS ME
God has a unique role for me to play in his family.
God has gifted me for this assignment

YOU WILL SHARE IN CHRIST'S MISSION IN THE WORLD
As members of Christ's body, I am his hands, his feet, his eyes, and his heart. He works through m in the world. I have a contribution to make.

A CHURCH FAMILY WILL HELP KEEP YOU FROM BACKSLIDING
I am called and commanded to be involved in each other's lives.

I am called to love imperfect sinners just as God does.
I became a Christian by committing myself to Christ, but I become a church member by committing myself to a specific group of believers. The first decision brings salvation, the second brings fellowship

I AM CALLED TO BELONG, NOT JUST BELIEVE.


EXPERIENCE LIFE TOGETHER

Life is meant to be shared.

God intended for me to experience life together with other believers.
Real fellowship is experience life together.

The Body of Christ like your own body is really a collection of many small cells.
The life of the Body of Christ like your body is contained in that cell.

IN REAL FELLOWSHIP PEOPLE EXPERIENCE AUTHENTICITY
It is genuine heart to heart sometimes gut level sharing.
It happens when people get honest about who they are, and what is happening to their lives.
People wear masks and keep their guard up and act as if everything is rosy in their lives. These attitudes are the death of real fellowship.

It is only as I open up about my life, that I experience real fellowship.
Authentic requires courage and humility.
It is the only way to grow spiritually and be emotionally healthy.

IN REAL FELLOWSHIP PEOPLE EXPERIENCE MUTUALITY
Mutuality is the art of giving and receiving. It's depending on each other.
Mutuality is the heart of fellowship, building reciprocal relationships, sharing responsibilities, and helping each other.
All of us is more consistent in our faith when others walk with us and encourage us.
The Bible commands mutual accountability, mutual encouragement, mutual serving, and mutual honouring.

I am not responsible for everyone in the Body of Christ. But I am responsible to them.
God expects me to do whatever I can to help them.

IN REAL FELLOWSHIP PEOPLE EXERIENCE SYMPATHY
Sympathy is entering in and sharing the pain of others.
Sympathy meets two fundamental human needs , the need to be understood and the need to have your feelings validated. Everytime you understand and affirm someone's feelings, you build fellowship.

The simplest levels of fellowship are:
Fellowship of sharing
Fellowship of studying God's word
Fellowship of serving
Fellowship of suffering.

IN REAL FELLOWSHIP PEOPLE EXPERIENCE MERCY
Fellowship is a place of grace, where mistakes arent rubbed in but rubbed out.
Fellowship happens when mercy wins over justice.
We all need mercy, because we all stumble and fall and require help getting back on track. We need to offer mercy to each other and be willing to accept it  from each other.

I can't have fellowship without forgiveness.
It takes a massive amount of mercy and grace to create and maintain fellowship.
I will never be asked to forgive someone else more than God has already forgiven me.
Forgiveness is letting go of the past.
Trust has to do with future behaviour.

Forgiveness must be immediate, whether or not a person asks for it.
Trust must be rebuilt over time.

I was created for a community.
I need others in my life.
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lenore
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« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2005, 03:00:06 am »

PART THREE

CHAPTER 18 TO 21

CULTIVATING COMMUNITY

Community requires committement.
Only the Holy Spirit can create real fellowship between believers.
It takes both God's power and our effort to produce a loving Christian community.

CULTIVATING COMMUNITY TAKES HONESTY
We cannot have community without candor
Real fellowship depends on frankness.
When conflict is handled correctly , we grow closer to each other by facing and resolving our differences.

God tells us to speak to each other within the church as a loving family member.






CULTIVATING COMMUNITY TAKES HUMILITY
Humility builds bridges
Humility is the oil that smoothes and soothes relationships
The proper dress for fellowship is a humble attitude.
We receive God's grace by humbly admitting we need it.

I can develop humility in a very practical ways.
By admitting my weakness
By being patient with others' weaknesses
By being open to correction
And by pointing the spotlight on others.

Humility is not thinking less of myself, it is thinking of myself less.
Humility is thinking more of others.
Humble people are so focused on serving others, they don't think of themselves.

CULTIVATING COMMUNITY TAKES COURTESY
Courtesy is respecting our difference , being considerate of each other's feelings, and being patient with people who irritate us.
In a family, acceptance.
It is based on the fact that we belong to each other. We defend and protect family.
Community has nothing to do with compatibility. The basis for our fellowship is our relationship to God. We're a family.

Real Community happens when people know it is safe enough to share their doubts and fears without being judged.

CULTIVATING COMMUNITY TAKES CONFIDENTIALITY
Only in a save enviroment of warm acceptance and trusted confidentiality will people open up and share their deepest needs and mistakes.

CULTIVATING COMMUNITY TAKES FREQUENCY
I must have frequent regular contact with my local family to build genuine fellowship .
Relationships take time.
I have to spend time with people, a lot of time, to build deep relationships.

Community is built on the conviction that I need it for spiritual health.
Fellowship requires an investment of time.
The benefits of sharing life together prepares us for heaven.

Community requires commitment.




RESTORING BROKEN FELLOWSHIP

Relationship is always worth restoring
God wants us to value relationship and make the effort to maintain them.
God has given us the ministry of restoring relationships.
That ones ability to get along with others is a mark of spiritual maturity.

Since Christ wants his family to be known for our love for each other, broken fellowship is a disgraceful testimony to unbelievers.

If I want God's blessing on my life. I want to be known as a child of God. I must learn to be a peacemaker.
Because I was formed to be a part of God's family and the second purpose of my life on earth is to learn how to love and relate to others. Peacemaking is one of the most important skills I can develop.

Peacemaking is not avoiding conflict.
Peacemaking is also not appeasement

HOW TO RESTORE A RELATIONSHIP
TALK TO GOD BEFORE TALKING TO THE PERSON
Discuss the problem with God.
All my relationships will go smoother if I would just pray more about them.
Most conflicts are rooted in unmet needs. Some of those needs are only met by God.
No one can meet all your needs except God.
Many of the conflicts are caused by prayerlessness.

ALWAYS TAKES THE INITIATIVE
God expects you to make the first move.
Restoring broken fellowship is so important, Jesus commanded that it even takes priority over worship: Matt 5:23-24
Delaying restoring fellowship only deepens resentment and makes matters worse.
Acting quickly also reduces the spiritual damage to you.

SYMPATHIZE WITH THEIR FEELINGS
Before attempting to solve any disagreements you must first listen to people's feelings.
It means pay close attention.
Focus on their feelings
Begin with sympathy.
Just listen and let them unload emotionally without being defensive.
Feelings are not always true or logical.
WE ALL GET BEASTLY WHEN HURT.
Patient comes from wisdom and wisdom comes from hearing the perspective of others.
PEOPLE DON'T CARE WHAT WE KNOW UNTIL THEY KNOW WE CARE.

CONFESS YOUR PART OF THE CONFLICT:
Admitting your own mistakes or sin.
Ask God to show you how much of the problem is your fault.
Confession is a powerful tool for reconciliation.
Accept responsibility for your mistakes and ask for forgiveness.

ATTACK THE PROBLEM NOT THE PERSON
A soft answer is always better than a sarcastic one.
How you say it is as important as what you say.
For the sake of fellowship you must
Destroy your arsenal of relational nuclear weapons,
Including condemning, belittling, comparing, labeling, insulting, condescending and being sarcastic.

COOPERATE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE.
Peace always has a price tag.
For the sake of fellowship, do your best to compromise. Adjust to others, and show preference to what they need.

EMPHASIZE RECONCILITATION NOT RESOLUTION
Reconciliation focuses on the relationship. When we focus on reconciliation , the problem loses significance and often becomes irrelevant.
We can reestablish relationship even when we are unable to resolve the difference.
God expects unity not uniformity.
And we can walk arm in arm with out seeing eye to eye.
Reconciliation means you bury the hatchet not necessarily the issue.
It takes a lot of effort to restore a relationship.
But when you work for peace you are doing what God would do.

RELATIONSHIP ARE ALWAYS WORTH RESTORING.

PROTECTING YOUR CHURCH

It is my role to protect the unity of my church.
God deeply desires that I experience oneness and harmony with others.

Unity is the soul of fellowship.
Destroy it, and you rip the heart out of CHRIST'S BODY.
Our supreme model is the Trinity.
Our Heavenly Father enjoy watching his children get along with each other.
Jesus prayed passionately for our unity. It was our unity that was upper most on his mind during those agonizing hours in the garden.
Nothing on earth is more valuable to God than his church. He paid the highest price for it. He wants it protected.

If I am a part of God's family. It is my responsibility to protect the unity of where I fellowship.
I am commissioned by Jesus Christ to do everything possible to preserve the unity, protect the fellowship, and promote harmony in my church family and among all believers.

FOCUS ON WHAT WE HAVE IN COMMON, NOT OUR DIFFERENCES.
God wants unity. For unity sake we must never let differences divide ue.
We must stay focused on what matters most.
Learning to love each other as Christ has loved us.
If we concentrate on loving each other and fulfilling God's purpose , harmony results.

BE REALISTIC IN YOUR EXPECTATIONS
Once you discover what God intends real fellowship to be .
I must passionately love the church in spite of its imperfections.
Maturity is living with the tension. Others will disappoint you and let you down, but that is no excuse to stop fellowship with them. They are your family, even when they don't act like it and you cant just walk out on them.
Church is made up of real sinners including me.
Reconcilitation is the road to stronger character and deeper fellowship.
There is not perfect church to escape to.

'EVERY CHURCH COULD PUT OUT A SIGN
''NO PERFECT PEOPLE NEED APPLY. THIS IS A PLACE ONLY FOR THOSE WHO ADMIT THEY ARE SINNERS, NEED GRACE, AND WANT TO GROW''

If we do no give thanks daily for the Christians fellowship in which we have been placed, and we keep complaining about everything, then we hinder God from letting our fellowship grow.

CHOOSE TO ENCOURAGE RATHER THAN CRITIZE
When I criticize what another believer is doing in faith and from sincere conviction ,
I am interfering with God's business.
I must not stand in judgement or look down on other believers whose convictions differ from our own.
When I judge another believer,
-I lose my fellowship with God
-I expose my own pride and insecurity
I set myself up to be judged by God
-I harm the fellowship of the church
A critical spirit is a costly vice.

Any time we spend comparing or criticizing other believers is time that should have been spent building the unity of our fellowship.

REFUSE TO LISTEN TO GOSSIP
Gossip is passing on information when you are neither part of the problem or part of the solution. Listening to gossip is like accepting stolen property.
People who you gossip with , will also gossip about you.
If you listen to gossip. God says you are a troublemaker.

PRACTICE GOD'S METHOD FOR CONFLICT RESOLUTION

SUPPORT YOUR PASTOR AND LEADERS
God gives leaders the responsibility and the authority to maintain the unity of the church.
Pastors will one day stand before God and give an account of how well they watched over me.
I will give an account to God of how well I followed my leader.

We protect the fellowship when I honour those who serve me by leading.
Pastors and elders need my prayers, encouragment, appreciation and love.
I am commanded.

It is my responsibility to protect and promote the unity of my church.
I must put my full effort into it
And I will please God.
I will have to do the best for the Body, not for myself, showing preference to others.
GOD BLESSES CHURCHES THAT ARE UNIFIED.

WHEN GOD HAS A BUNCH OF BABY BELIEVERS HE WANTS TO DELIVER, HE LOOKS FOR THE WARMEST INCUBATOR CHURCH HE CAN FIND.
Everyone needs and wants to be loved.


IT IS MY RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT THE UNITY OF THE CHURCH.













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lenore
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« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2005, 09:23:57 pm »

APRIL 30 ...PART 1
HIGHLIGHTS FOR SESSION 4

PURPOSE 3
YOU WERE CREATED TO BECOME LIKE CHRIST
PHIL. 2:5
YOUR ATTITUDE SHOULD BE THE SAME AS THAT OF CHRIST JESUS


DAY 22
CREATED TO BECOME LIKE CHRIST
I was created to become like Christ
2 CORINTHIANS 3:18[NLT]
AS THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD WORKS WITHIN US,
WE BECOME MORE AND MORE LIKE HIM
AND REFLECT HIS GLORY EVEN MORE

QUESTION:
IN WHAT AREA OF MY LIFE DO I NEED TO ASK FOR THE SPIRIT'S POWER TO BE LIKE CHRIST TODAY?


DAY 23
HOW WE GROW
It is never too late to start growing
ROMANS 12:2[TEV]
LET GOD TRANSFORM YOU INWARDLY BY A COMPLETE CHANGE OF YOUR MIND. THEN YOU WILL BE ABLE TO KNOW THE WILL OF GOD
WHAT IS GOOD AND IS PLEASING TO HIM AND IS PERFECT

QUESTION:
WHAT IS ONE AREA WHERE I NEED TO STOP THINKING MY WAY AND START THINKING GOD'S WAY?

DAY 24
TRANSFORMED BY TRUTH
The truth transforms me
JOHN 8:31-32[KJV]
IF YOU CONTINUE IN MY WORD, THEN ARE YOU MY DISCIPLES INDEED,
AND YOU SHALL KNOW THE TRUTH,
AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE

QUESTION:
WHAT HAS GOD ALREADY TOLD ME IN HIS WORD THAT
I HAVEN'T STARTED DOING YET?


DAY 25
TRANSFORMED BY TROUBLE
There is a purpose behind every problem
ROMANS 8:28 [NIV]
AND WE KNOW THAT IN ALL THINGS GOD WORKS FOR THE GOOD OF THOSE WHO LOVE HIM, WHO HAVE BEEN CALLED ACCORDING TO HIS PURPOSE

QUESTION:
What problem in my life has caused the greatest growth in my life?

DAY 26
GROWING THROUGH TEMPTATION
Every temptation is an opportunity to do good
JAMES 1:12[NLT]
GOD BLESSES THE PEOPLE WHO PATIENTLY ENDURE TESTING.
AFTERWARD THEY WILL RECEIVE THE CROWN OF LIFE
THAT GOD HAS PROMISED TO THOSE WHO LOVE HIM

QUESTION:
What Christlike character quality can I develop by defeating the most common temptation I face?

DAY 27
DEFEATING TEMPTATION
There is always a way out
1 CORINTHIANS 10:13[NLT]
GOD IS FAITHFUL.
HE WILL KEEP THE TEMPTATION FROM BECOMING SO STRONG THAT YOU CAN'T STAND UP AGAINST IT.
WHEN YOU ARE TEMPTED,
HE WILL SHOW YOU A WAY OUT SO THAT YOU WILL NOT GIVE IN TO IT.

QUESTION:
Who can I ask to be a spiritual partner to help me defeat a persistent temptation by praying for me?

DAY 28
IT TAKES TIME
There are no shortcuts to maturity
PHILIPPIANS 1:6[NCV]
GOD BEGAN DOING A GOOD WORK IN YOU, AND I AM SURE HE WILL CONTINUE IT UNTIL IT IS FINISHED WHEN JESUS CHRIST COMES AGAIN.

QUESTION:
In what area of my spiritual growth do I need to be more patient and persistent?
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lenore
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« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2005, 09:26:04 pm »

APRIL 30 PART 2

40 DAYS WEEK 4

3 TOOLS GOD USES TO MAKE ME LIKE JESUS
1. BIBLE
2. HOLY SPIRIT
3. CIRCUMSTANCE

3 CHOICES THAT WILL HELP ME BECOME MORE LIKE JESUS
1. YOU CAN CHOOSE 'WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT'
2. DEPEND ON GOD'S SPIRIT MOMENT BY MOMENT
3. RESPOND TO CIRCUMSTANCE THE WAY JESUS DID

DAY 22: CREATED TO BECOME LIKE CHRIST:
God knew what he was doing from the very beginning . He decided from the onset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of His Son…
We see the original and intended shape of our live there in him
ROMANS 8:29[THE MESSAGE]

We look at this Son and see God's original purpose in everything created
COLOSSIANS 1:15 [THE MESSAGE]

I was created to be come like Christ
God planned to make me like his Son, Jesus
It is my destiny.
I am a spiritual being, my spirit is immortal and will out last my earthly body.
I am intellectual, I can think, I can reason, and I can solve problems.
I am relational. I can give real love and I can receive real love.
I have a moral consciousness. I can discern right from wrong; which makes me accountable to God.
God wants me to bear his image and likeness.
God wants me to become godly, taking on his values, his attitudes, his character.
God ultimate goal in my life is character development.
God wants me to grow up spiritually and become like Christ
My life is supposed to be difficult, because enable me to grow.
I exist for God's purposes
God gave me time on earth to build and strengthen my character for heaven.
It is the Holy Spirit's job to produce Christlikeness character in my life.
I will develop Christlikeness if I allow Christ to live through me.

I must cooperate with the Holy Spirit's work
Obedience unlocks God's power
God waits for me to act first.
1. I must choose to let go of the old ways.
2. I must change the way I think
3. I must put on the character of Christ by developing new, godly habits.

My character is essentially the sum of my habits, it is how you habitually act.

God uses His Word , people, and circumstances to mold me:
God provides the truth I need to grow
God's people provide the support I need to grow
Circumstances provide the environment I need to practice Christlikeness.

I cannot grow in Christlikeness in isolation.
I must be around other people and interact with them.
I cannot practice being like Jesus without being in relationships with other people.

Becoming like Christ is a long slow process of growth.
Spiritual maturity, is a gradual, progressive development that will take the rest of my life.
I am a work in progress.
My spiritual transformation in developing the character of Jesus will take the rest of my life and wont get completed until I reach heaven.
God is far more interested in building my character.
God will make me like himself before he takes me to heaven.
It is my greatest privilege, it is my responsibility, and it is my ultimate destiny.

DAY 23
HOW WE GROW
GOD WANTS US TO GROW UP LIKE CHRIST IN EVERYTHING 
 EPHESIANS 3:15 [THE MESSAGE]

WE ARE NOT MEANT TO REMAIN AS CHILDREN
EPHESIANS 4:14[PH]

God wants me to grow up
My heavenly Father's goal is for me to mature and develop the characteristics of Jesus Christ.
Spiritual growth is not automatic. It takes an intentional commitment.
I must want to grow.
I must decide to grow
I must make an effort to grow
And I must persist in growing.
Discipleship the process of becoming like Christ always begins with a decision.
Nothing will shape my life than the commitments I choose to make.
My commitments can develop me or destroy me. They will refine me.
I will become what I am committed to.
Every choice I make has eternal consequences. I better choose wisely.


God's Part and your part:
Christlikeness is the result of making Christlike choices and depending on his Spirit to help me fulfill those choices.
Phil  2:12-13: "Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose"
Work out - is my responsibility
Work in - is God's role.
God has given me a new life. Now it is my responsibility to work it out.
I need to take my spiritual growth seriously.

Changing my autopilot:
To change my life , I must change the way I think.
Behind everything I do is a thought.
Every behaviour is motivated by a belief, and every action is prompted by an attitude.
My first step to spiritual growth is to start the way I think.
Change always starts first in my mind.
The way I think determines the way I feel, the way I feel influences the way I act.
To be like Christ I must develop the mind of Christ.

We are commanded to thing the same way that of Christ Jesus thought
The first half of the mental shift is to stop thinking immature thoughts, which are self centered and self-seeking
The second  half of thinking like Jesus is to start thinking maturely, which focuses on others , not yourself.

The Christian life is more than creeds and convictions ; it includes conduct and character.
Our deeds must be consistent with our creeds, and our beliefs must be backed up with Christlike behaviour.
Christianity is a relationship and a life style.
The core of that lifestyle is thinking of others, as Jesus did.
Thinking of others is the heart of Christlikeness and the best evidence of spiritual growth.

DAY 24
TRANSFORMED BY TRUTH
People need more than bread for their life, they must feed on every word of God.
Matthew 4:4[NLT}

God's…gracious Word can make you into what he wants you to be and give you everything you could possibly need.
Acts 20:32[The Message}

The truth will transform me.
Spiritual growth is the process of replacing lies with truth.
The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to make us like the Son of God. To become like Jesus, we must fill our lives with his Word.
God's Word is unlike any other word. It is alive.
God speaks, things  change.
Everything including me exists because "God said it".
God's Word generates life, creates faith, produces change, frightens the Devil, causes miracles, heals hurts, builds character, transforms circumstances, imparts joy, overcomes adversity, defeats temptation, infuses hope, releases power, cleanses our minds, brings things into being, and guarantees our future forever.
I cannot live without Word of God.
I should never take it for granted.
I should consider it as essential to my life as food.

God' Word is the spiritual nourishment I must have to fulfill my purpose.
The spiritual menu for spiritual strength and growth.

To be a healthy disciple of Jesus , feeding on God's Word must be my first priority.

I must accept its authority:
The Bible must be the authoritative standard for my life.
The Bible must always be the first and last word in my life.
Only God word will meet my needs in everything.

I must assimilate its truth:
I must fill my mind with is that the Holy Spirit can transform me in its truth.
  First: I must receive God's Word.
I must listen and accept with an open receptive mind.
It is my receptiveness that will determine if God's Word will take root in my life and bear the fruit.

Receptive Attitudes:
Closed mind - hard soil
Superficial mind - Shallow Soil
Distracted Mind - Soil with weeds

Anytime I feel I am not learning anything from sermons, or Bible teachers, I should be checking my attitude.

  Second: I must read the Bible.
Daily Reading will keep me in God's voice range.

 Third: research and studying the Bible  is a way to stay in the Word.
Asking Questions the Bible:
Writing down your insights.
Pause: WHO? WHAT?WHEN?WHERE?WHY? AND HOW?

 Fourth: abide in God's word by taking time to remember it. My capacity to remember is a Gift from God.  If God Word is important to me, I will take the time to remember it.
My memory is a muscle that must be exercise.

 Fifth: Abiding God's Word I must reflect on it. Meditating on God's word will keep me from worrying.  Daily reflection will transform my life and make me more like Jesus .
Serious reflection on God's truth is a key to answered prayer and the secret to successful living.

I must apply its principles:
I must be come a doer of the Word.
Without implementation all our Bible studies are worthless.
God's blessing comes from obeying the truth.
The truth will set me free, and first it may make me miserable.
God's word exposes my  motives , points out my faults, rebukes my sin, and expects me to change.  Applying God's word will go against my human nature, so it will be hard work.

Writing out an action step as a result of my reading and studying and reflecting God's word.
Action steps are
Personal - involving me
Practical - something I can do
Provable - deadline to do it.
Every application will involve my relationship with God, my relationship with others, and my personal character.
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lenore
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« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2005, 09:29:45 pm »

APRIL 30 PART THREE

DAY 25
TRANSFORMED BY TROUBLE

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all
2 Corinthians 4:17 [NIV}

It is the fire of suffering that brings forth the gold of godliness
Author: Madame Guyon

God has a purpose behind every problem.
God uses circumstance to develop my character.
Problems are significant in God's growth process for me.

God uses problems to draw me closer to himself.
It is during suffering that I will learn to pray my most authentic, heartfelt honest to God prayers.  But only suffering will I know Jesus. I will learn things about God in suffering that I cannot learn any other way.
Problems forces me to look to God and to depend on Him instead of myself.
I will never know that God is all I need until God is all I got.
None of my  problems can happen without God's permission.
Because God is sovereignty in control, accidents are just incidents that God's good plan for you.
Because every day of my life was written on God's calendar before I was even born.
Everything that happens to me, has spiritual significance.

ROMANS 8:28-29
Only in heaven is everything done perfectly the way God intends.

We know: God is in complete control of my universe and that he loves me.

That God causes: My life is not a result of a random chance, fate, or luck.
History is HIS STORY
God is pulling the strings.
We make mistakes , but God never does.

Everything: God's plan for my life involves all that happen to me.
Including my  mistakes, my sins, and my hurts.  It includes illness, debt, disasters, divorce, and death of a loved one.
God can bring good out of evil.

To work together:  The events in my  life work together in God's plan. It is an interdependent parts of the process to make me like Christ.
If I gave God all my distasteful, unpleasant experiences, He will blend them together for good.

For the Good: Even though must of the world is evil. God specializes in bringing good out of it. God's purposes is greater than all of my problems, my pain and even my sin.

Of those who love God and are called: This promise is only for God's children.

According to his Purpose:
Everything God allows to happen in my life is permitted for the purpose to become like Christ.

Every problem is a character building opportunity and the more difficult it is the greater the potential for building spiritual muscle and moral fiber.
My circumstances are only temporary, but my character is forever.

When I have been refined like fire, people will be able to see Jesus in my reflection.

Since God intends to make me more like Jesus, God will take my through the same experiences Jesus went through. Including temptation, loneliness, stress, criticism, rejection, and many  others problems. Why should God exempt me when he allowed his own Son to go through it.




Remember that God's plan is good: God knows what is best for me and he has my best interest at heart.
It is vital to stay focus on God's plan for me, than on my problems.
My focus will determine my feelings
The secret to endurance is to remember that your pain is temporary but my reward will be eternal.

Rejoice and give thanks: God tells us to give thanks IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES
God wants me to thank him that he will use my problems to fulfill his purpose.
No matter what happens I can rejoice in God's wisdom, love, care, power and faithfulness.
I can rejoice knowing that God is going through the pain with me.
God enters into my suffering. God will never leave me on my own.

Refuse to give up: Character building is slow process.
I will know when I am maturing because I will begin to see the hand of God in the random, baffling, and seemingly pointless circumstance in my life.

DAY 26
GROWING THROUGH TEMPTATION

Happy is the man who doesn't give in and do wrong when he is tempted, for afterwards he will get as his reward, the crown of life that God has promised those who loved him
JAMES 1:12[LB]

My temptations have been my masters in divinity.
Author: Martin Luther.

Every Temptation is an opportunity to do good.
On the path to spiritual maturity, even temptation becomes a stepping stone when we realize that it is an occasion to do the right thing. Temptation simply provides a choice.
God wants to use it to develop me. Every time I choose to do good instead of sin, I am growing in the character of Christ.
Jesus Character is described in the fruits of the Spirit.  - Gal. 5:22-23.
To have the fruits of the Spirit is to be like Christ.
Fruit always matures and ripens slowly.
God develops the fruit of the Spirit in my life by allowing me to experience circumstances in which I am tempted to express the exact opposite quality!
Character development always involves a choice, and temptation provides that opportunity.
God teaches me to love by putting some unlovely people around us.
God teaches me real joy in the midst of sorrow, when I will turn to him.
Joy is based on relationship with God.
God develops real peace within me by allowing times of chaos and confusion. I will learn real peace by choosing to trust God in circumstances in which I am tempted to worry or be afraid. Patience is developed in circumstances in which we are forced to wait and are tempted to be angry.
God uses the opposite of situation of each fruit to allow me a choice.
Every time I defeat temptation, I will become more like Christ!

Satan uses the same pattern when tempting us.
1. DESIRE: Satan identifies a desire inside of me. a. A sinful desire, b. legitimate normal desires. Temptation starts when Satan suggests a thought that I will give in to an evil desire. Temptation begins within us. Temptation always starts within my mind.
2. DOUBT:  Satan tries to get me to doubt what God has said about the sin.
3. DECEPTION: Satan is incapable to telling the truth and is called the Father of lies. Satan offers his lie to replace what God has already said in his Word.
4. DISOBEDIENCE: I finally act on the thought I have been toying with in my mind. What began as an idea gets birthed into behaviour? I give in to whatever got my attention.

REFUSE TO BE INTIMIDATED: I will never outgrow temptation.
I should consider temptation a compliment. Temptation is a sign that Satan hates me. I can never be able to avoid temptation completely.
It is not a sin to be tempted. Temptation only becomes a sin when I give in to it.
I can't stop the Devil from suggesting thoughts but I can choose not to dwell on them.
The more closer I grow to God, the more Satan will try to tempt me.
The moment I became God's child, Satan puts out a contract on me. I am his enemy and he is plotting my downfall.
Satan fears my prayers and will do anything to stop them.

RECOGNIZE MY PATTERN OF TEMPTATION AND BE PREPARE FOR THEM:
Some circumstances will cause my to stumble almost immediately. These situations are unique to my weaknesses, and I need to identify them because Satan knows all about them. Satan knows what trips me up and he will constantly work at getting me into those circumstances.

ASKED; WHEN AM I MOST TEMPTED
               WHO IS WITH ME WHEN I'M MOST TEMPTED?
               WHERE AM I MOST TEMPTED?
               HOW DO I USUALLY FEEL WHEN I AM MOST TEMPTED?

I should identify my typical pattern of temptation and then prepare to avoid that situation as much as possible. Wise planning reduces temptations.
Ephesians 4:27, Proverbs 4:26-27, Proverbs 16:17.

REQUEST GOD'S HELP: Heaven has a twenty four-hour emergency hot line. God wants me to ask him for assistance in overcoming temptation. The Bible guarantees that my cry for help will be heard because Jesus is sympathetic to my struggles. Jesus faces those same temptations as I do. Hebrews 4:15  God is waiting to help us defeat temptation so why don't I turn to him more often? God's love is everlasting, and his patience endures forever. So I need to ask him for the power to do the right thing and then expect God to provide it.

TEMPTATION KEEPS US DEPENDENT UPON GOD: So every time I am standing up to a temptation, I will become more like Jesus. When I stumble, I should look up to God, and expect him to help me and remember the reward that is waiting for me.







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lenore
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« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2005, 09:32:05 pm »

APRIL 30 - PART FOUR

DAY 27
DEFEATING TEMPTATION:
Run from anything that gives you the evil thoughts…. But stay close to anything that makes you wants to do right.   2 Timothy 2:22 [LB}

Remember that the temptation that comes into your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will keep the temptation from becoming so strong that you can't stand up against it. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you will not give in to it.  [NLT]

There is always a way out.
God has promised never to allow more on me that he puts within me to handle it. He will not permit any temptation that I could not overcome. However I must do my part!

REFOCUS MY ATTENTION ON SOMETHING ELSE: I am to refocus my attention because resisting a thought doesn't work. It only intensifies my focus on the wrong thing and strengthens it allures.
Since temptations always begin with a thought, the quickest way to neutralize its allure is to turn my attention to something else.
The battle for sin is won or lost in your mind. Whatever gets my attention will get me.
Psalms 119:37
I will naturally move towards whatever my focus my attention on. The more I think about something the stronger it takes hold of me. 
Temptation begins by capturing my attention. What gets my attentions arouses my emotions. My emotion activates my behaviour, and I will act on what I felt.
Ignoring temptation is far more effective than fighting it. Once my mind is on something else, the temptation loses it power. Do whatever necessary to turn my attention to something else.
Spiritually my mind is my most vulnerable organ. To reduce temptation, keep my mind on the Word of God. I can defeat bad thoughts by thinking on something better.
Satan can't get my attention when my mind is preoccupied with something else.

REVEAL MY STUGGLES TO A GODLY FRIEND OR SUPPOR GROUP: God's plan for my growth and freedom includes other Christians. Don't repress temptation. Confess it.
Don't conceal temptation, reveal it. Revealing your feelings is the beginning of healing.
Hiding my hurts only intensifies them. I am only as sick as my secrets. Satan wants me to think that my sin and temptations are unique so I must keep them a secret. We all fight the same temptations.  What ever I cannot talk freely about, is already out of control in my life!! Some problems are too ingrained, too habitual, and too big to solve on my own.
It is humiliating to reveal my weakness to others, but lack of humility is the very thing that keeps me from getting better
RESIST THE DEVIL: We are to fight back.
1. accept God's salvation. I wont be able to NO TO THE DEVIL unless I have said YES TO CHRIST. Without Christ I am defenseless against the devil.  My  mind is  protected by God.  As a believer , Satan cannot force me in to do anything . Satan can only suggest!!
2. Use God's Word as my weapon against Satan: There is power in God's word and Satan fears it. I should never argue with the Devil. He is better at it and been doing for thousands of years.  I can use the weapon that makes him tremble. THE TRUTH OF GOD. Memorizing verses is essential to defeating temptaiton. JESUS DID THIS!

REALIZE YOUR VULNERABILITY:
God warned me never to get too overconfident . I must never let my guard  down, and think I am beyond temptation. I should never carelessly put myself into the situations of temptations.

DAY 28
IT TAKES TIME
Everything on earth has it own time and its own season
Ecclesiates 3:1[CEV]

I am sure that God who began the good work within you will keep right on helping you grow in his grace until his task within you is finally finished on that day when Jesus Christ returns    Philippians 1:6{LB}

Thee is no shortcuts to maturity.
It takes a full season for fruit to mature and ripen. For the fruit of the Spirit  cannot be rushed to develop the Christlike character. Spiritual growth takes time. God is more concerned how strong I grow that how fast I grow. God views my life from and for eternity. God is never in a hurry.
Christ invade my life at conversion, by softening me up , by allowing problems I couldn't handle.
The moment I open myself up to Christ, God gets a 'beachhead' in my life. I can only give God as much of me, as I can understand at the moment. Once God is in my life, he begin a campaign to take over more and more territory until all of my life is completely his.
Philippians 1:6
Discipleship is the process of conforming to Christ. Christlikeness is my eventual destination, but my journey will last a lifetime.
Everyday God wants me to become a little more like him.  Real maturity is never the result of a single experience. Growth is gradual.

WE ARE SLOW LEARNERS:
WE HAVE A LOT TO UNLEARN: I was given a brand new nature at the moment of conversion, but I still have old habits, patterns, and practices that need to be removed and replaced.
WE ARE AFRAID TO HUMBLY FACE THE TRUTH ABOUT OURSELVES: Only as God is allowed to shine the light of his truth on my faults, my failures, my hang ups, then I can begin to work on them. I cannot grow with out a humble teachable attitude.
GROWTH IS OFTEN PAINFUL AND SCARY: There is no growth without change. There is no change without fear of loss, and thee is no loss without pain. Every change involves a loss of some kind. I must let go of the old ways in order to experience new. 
I can build my identity around my defects.
HABITS TAKE TIME TO DEVELOP: My character is the sum total of my habits. My habits define my character. I must develop the habits of Christlike character. I must practice them and that will take time.

BELIEVE GOD IS WORKING IN MY LIFE EVEN WHEN I DON'T FEEL IT:
Spiritual growth is sometime tedious work, one small step at a time. Expect gradual improvement.
KEEP A NOTEBOOK OR JOURNAL OF LESSONS LEARNED:
BE PATIENT WITH GOD AND WITH MYSELF: God is never hurried, but he is always on time. God will use my entire lifetime to prepare me for my role in eternity.
Great soul are grown through struggles and storms and seasons of suffering. Be patient with the process.
DON'T GET DISCOURAGED: a delay is not a denial from God.
Remember how far I have come, not just how far I have to go.
I am not where I want to be, but neither am I where I used to be.

GOD ISN'T FINISHED WITH ME YET!!


================================================

This is only highlights that I have personalized .

I hope you will go and get your own copy of the PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE BY RICK WARREN.

The next two weeks will be coming up as fast as I can read them and type them up.

Lenore
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lenore
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« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2005, 09:56:50 pm »

 :)APRIL 30:

I KNOW MY INFORMATION ABOUT PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE  40 DAYS OF PURPOSE IS LONG.

My church is going through this journey which started April 3

WEEK ONE : DAY 1 TO 7 
Started April 3rd. - IT ALL STARTS WITH GOD.

I have shared with you each weeks highlights, and questions, and bible verses, to encourage you and to inspire you .

I personalized each days daily readings.

Because internalizing God's word , that is presented by his servant Rick Warren is encouraging me. I wanted to be able to share and encourage my brothers and sisters on this assembly board.

ALso I am learning about feelings with my Time for Me, self esteem course, which is aligning up so nicely with Purpose Drive Life.
That I have become like a shaken pop bottle of emotions.

SO I hope you have all be encouraged by some of the highlights that I have typed out for you to read and to consider.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my contribution here to encourage all of you with your own personal journey walking with Christ.

Lenore
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« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2006, 05:16:54 am »

This is encouraging in regards to Rick Warren:

About Rick Warren (REMEMBER HE WROTE-PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE)

You will enjoy the new insights that Rick Warren has, with his wife now having cancer and him having "wealth" from the book sales. This is an absolutely incredible short interview with Rick Warren,

"Purpose Driven Life " author and pastor of Saddleback Church in California .

In the interview by Paul Bradshaw with Rick Warren, Rick said:

People ask me, What is the purpose of life? And I respond: In a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were made to last forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven.

One day my heart is going to stop, and that will be the end of my body-- but not the end of me.

I may live 60 to 100 years on earth, but I am going to spend
trillions of years in eternity. This is the warm-up act - the dress rehearsal.
God wants us to practice on earth what we will do forever in eternity.

We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that out, life isn't going to make sense.

Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you're just coming out of one, or you're getting ready to go into another one.

The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than your comfort.

God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy.

We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that's not the goal of life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the toughest, with my wife, Kay, getting cancer.

I used to think that life was hills and valleys - you go through a dark time, then you go to the mountaintop, back and forth. I don't believe that anymore.

Rather than life being hills and valleys, I believe that it's kind of like two rails on a railroad track, and at all times you have something good and something bad in your life.

No matter how good things are in your life, there is always something bad that needs to be worked on.

And no matter how bad things are in your life, there is always something good you can thank God for.

You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your problems.

If you focus on your problems, you're going into self-centeredness,
"which is my problem, my issues, my pain." But one of the easiest ways to get rid of pain is to get your focus off yourself and onto God and others.

We discovered quickly that in spite of the prayers of hundreds of thousands of people, God was not going to heal Kay or make it easy for her.

It has been very difficult for her, and yet God has strengthened her character, given her a ministry of helping other people, given her a testimony, drawn her closer to Him and to people.

You have to learn to deal with both the good and the bad of life.

Actually, sometimes learning to deal with the good is harder. For instance, this past year, all of a sudden, when the book sold 15 million copies, it made me instantly very wealthy

It also brought a lot of notoriety that I had never had to deal with before. I don't think God gives you money or notoriety for your own ego or for you to live a life of ease.

So I began to ask God what He wanted me to do with this money, notoriety and influence. He gave me two different passages that helped me decide what to do, II Corinthians 9 and Psalm 72.

First, in spite of all the money coming in, we would not change our lifestyle one bit. We made no major purchases.

Second, about midway through last year, I stopped taking a salary from the church.

Third, we set up foundations to fund an initiative we call The Peace Plan to plant churches, equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, and educate the next generation.

Fourth, I added up all that the church had paid me in the 24 years since I started the church, and I gave it all back. It was liberating to be able to serve God for free.

We need to ask ourselves: Am I going to live for possessions? Popularity?

Am I going to be driven by pressures? Guilt? Bitterness? Materialism? Or am I going to be driven by God's purposes (for my life)?
When I get up in the morning, I sit on the side of my bed and say, God, if I don't get anything else done today, I want to know You
more and love You better. God didn't put me on earth just to fulfill a to-do list. He's more interested in what I am than what I do.
That's why we're called human beings, not human doings.
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