The Bible talks about how we should sacrifice as Christians. What does that mean? Today we will look at 2 people. Both of them pray about an hour a day. They have goals of quitting their addiction and finding their purpose. Mike is a hard core sugar addict and Sue is a hard core heroin addict. Both have had some success but both still have their struggles.
Saturday in December: Both of them get in their hour of prayer and both read the Bible. They have learned the value of strict planning for their day and both make it to 9:30 pm free from addiction. Mike settles in for about 90 minutes of “clean” TV but Sue has been hearing about Christian sacrifice. She decides to sacrifice some of her TV time and get in a bit more prayer. 15 minutes into her prayer time she is a little shocked by the clarity of her thoughts. The clarity of how mixed up her views of reality really are. A moment of clarity about what really should be going on in her life.
Why was this prayer time more powerful than the hour long prayer? She wanted to watch TV just as much as Mike but she sacrificed that time and tried to hear from God. If at that time 100 people prayed, maybe only 1 or 2 sacrificed anything at all. What kind of Christian warriors were the regular Christians who prayed? They were fluffy, normal, not ready for the war Christians.
Sue is still a bit of a mess but now God see’s Sue as someone who can someday be ready to do her part. When God see’s you as someone who someday will do your part – you are going to hear from Him. You still will have to put in a ton of work, make a ton of changes, make a ton of sacrifices – but now Jesus is as real to you as the room you are in. You still have sin habits but now you “know” the Holy Spirit is right with you – ready to help you. You “know” you are getting close to answered prayer. You feel like you need to improve in the area of righteousness but now you “know” that that is exactly what you want to do.
Tomorrow your challenges will be the same, but tomorrow you will still “know” what you want to do. That is a great advantage for tomorrow.
Mike made it through the evening without falling as well. But he got very frustrated while watching TV because he could not do the one thing he really wanted to do.
Which person do you want to be?
Margit Hannelore Roach noted the following:
A LIVING SACRIFICE
1.“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Rom. 12:1 -2.
“The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” Psa. 51:17. Contrite means sorrowful, crushed. We take a sorrowful attitude towards sin and fight to crush it.
“…Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings? He that walketh righteously, and speaketh uprightly; he that despiseth the gain of oppressions, that shaketh his hands from holding of bribes, that stoppeth his ears from hearing of blood, and shutteth his eyes from seeing evil; He shall dwell on high: his place of defense shall be the munitions of rocks: bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure.
The salt of the sacrifice is called, the salt of the covenant of God; because in common life, salt was the symbol of covenant. The salt had the power to preserve from putrification and corruption. Without salt we will be corrupt and we will decay.
So, is a living sacrifice. It will be alive. It will be burning with God’s fire. It will shine from within outwards for all to see. And “…because I live, ye shall live also.” John 14:19.
As we look at all of this spiritually, it comes down to this:
A living sacrifice cannot and will not die! Amen!
Margit Hannelore Roach
Cravings for an addiction can at times seem impossible to overcome. But when we understand how cravings work we have a fighting chance to overcome them. The first point is that no craving can last forever. www.feedtherightwolf.org noted that “cravings are shaped like a bell curve.
At first cravings start out slow but grow exponentially until they get really intense. Somewhere along this path most people would end up giving in. As the result they get used to an idea that they could never get past their cravings and that their cravings will eventually get so strong, that they will have no choice but to give in.
In actuality human beings cannot sustain any emotion or feelings indefinitely, and eventually any feeling or craving will decrease.
So the trick to stopping addiction is to learn to ride out cravings; to master a skill to stay away long enough for cravings to go away. This of course sounds simple, but as many addicts know it is not as easy to do”. But Over time you will learn that cravings do not rule your life, and that there is a way for you to ride out a craving and return to your normal self without having to act out. And the high that you get from success will be much stronger than any high that you could possibly get from any addiction.
The fire you feed will be the one that controls your life. The poker player who keeps losing and keeps reading poker books is feeding one fire. The gambler who destroys all her gambling items and reads the Bible is feeding another fire. She may slip up, but now she knows what it feels like to have the real fire burning in her life.
Read Matthew 16, and Acts 7-8
Pray the Lord’s prayer 4 times a day (if you can do it each time sincerely) or as often as you can sincerely pray it.
The Lord’s Prayer Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
Matthew 5 is about how we can change so that we will start to be blessed by God. www.relijournal.com noted the following
The Seventh Beatitude v9
God blesses those who work for peace,
for they will be called children of God.
Being a peacemaker is not the same as being a peacekeeper. Making peace does not mean you try to keep everybody happy. A peacemaker does not say yes to everybody and everything. A peacemaker builds their character on truth and righteousness. We can create true peace if we are at peace with God. Peacemakers are also those who try to make peace even if they fail.
On the other hand, if you are a keeper of peace you will try to keep everybody happy whatever the cost, even if that means going against God. The world is full of peace keepers. We need to be different and make the peace instead.
Romans 14:19 tells us to pursue those things that make peace and harmony. As a body we should be living in harmony and encouraging each other in our walks with God. By disciplining ourselves and by accepting discipline correctly, peace will be created. We will be blessed for working to make peace and it tells us in James 3:18 that those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of goodness, becoming known as God’s children.
Day one: Quitting addiction exercises
Day two: It is important to admit you are powerless
Day 3: Learn the right way to live
Day 4: Getting rid of negative emotions
Day 5: Remember – money lost is not yours. Don’t try to get it back or you will lose more.
Day 6: can you increase your pleasure by gambling?
Day 7: Staying clean in all ways helps you quit the addiction
Day 8: Decide what pain and pleasure you want
Day 9: Analyze what leads you back to your addiction
Day 10: Change your emotions and your mindsets. Stop believing that your big score will come in.
Day 11: Where the Spirit of the Lord is – there is liberty
Day 12: Learn how to worship God. Also try to develop positive addictions.
Day 13: Write out a letter saying why you want to quit
Day 14: Overcoming cravings and negative emotions
Day 15: You have some self control
Day 16: Have a list of coping statements. Have a list of substitute activities.
Day 17: How to find living water that will always satisfy you
Day 18: Do not have faulty beliefs abourt gambling odds
Day 19: Interview with a professional poker player
Day 26: Which prayers are answered quickly – which prayers time more time and persistence
Day 27: How to fill the vacuum that addiction caused
28: Finding a good church
29: Knowing why you can’t quit can help you plan how to quit
30: How to eliminate the vacuum created by quitting
31: Tripping your addiction trap. Overcoming sloth
32: You need clean people around you if you are going to stay clean
33: Use real math not gambling math
Day 34: Don’t condemn yourself
Day 35: Don’t test yourself to see if it is safe to gamble a little bit
Day 36: Knowing why you can’t quit can help you quit
Day 37: Do not chase pipe dreams
Day 38: Getting the anger out
Day 39: The vice of greed
Day 40: Specific planning helps break addiction
Day 41: Embrace the truth about gambling. Know your odds of hitting the big score.
Day 42: Quitting permanently
Day 43: Financial problems