I’ve been struggling with a bout of vertigo the past two weeks. My head spins if I make a sudden movement to the left or right. It’s even worse if I get up and down quickly.
I lose my balance easily too. It’s frustrating.
We aren’t sure what’s causing it. My doctor is hopeful that a round of strong antibiotics will help.
The only peace I have is to keep my eyes fixed straight ahead. If I stay focused on what’s directly ahead of me- I can keep my balance.
I guess that’s great advice for life, too.
Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Proverbs 4:25
I tend to get into trouble when I take my eyes off Jesus. It’s easy to do. Worries at work consume me at times. Or family issues distract me from my study of the Bible or prayer time.
Worse yet, sin can separate me from my walk with Christ. I’m too easily distracted by temptation or pride and forget the source of true strength and wisdom.
Do not turn to the right nor to the left; Turn your foot from evil. Proverbs 4:27
This week I am praying for better focus. I want to be free from the distractions of life that burden me and keep me from truly walking with Jesus.
And please pray for some relief from this vertigo. It’s dampened my spirit.
Let me know how I may pray for you.
I was preparing to leave campus for home tonight when I saw a small sign posted on a bulletin board…”Open Bible Study; Thursday evenings at 7pm; room 215.”
I don’t know why, but it surprised me. Surprised by the sign. Surprised that I saw the announcement among a host of other flyers.
I walked to room 215 to see what was going on. And there they were…four students huddled over their Bibles talking about the quest for perfection through Jesus Christ.
We run into Jesus in unexpected places.
The Samaritan woman ran into Jesus unexpectedly in John chapter 4. In a period of pain and shame, He gave her a thirst for “living water.”
In John chapter 8, an adulterous woman received grace from Jesus.
Zacchaeus was considered a cheat and a sinner…a tax collector…yet Jesus called to him and invited himself into Zacchaeus’ home. We see this in Luke chapter 19.
Where have you last seen Jesus unexpectedly? Was it in a random act of kindness from a stranger? Perhaps it was an encouraging note from an old friend.
This week my prayer is to continue to seek Jesus everyday. And to illustrate the love and compassion of Jesus in my own, public walk.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Please let me know how to pray for you.
The Titanic sank 106 years ago this week. Approximately 1,500 of the 2,200 passengers died when the cruise ship hit an iceberg in the North Atlantic Ocean on April 15, 1912. It’s considered to be the biggest maritime disaster in history.
The ship had been designed to be indestructible, but five compartments were punctured by the iceberg and the entire ship sank in a little over two hours.
Pride and overconfidence can create a Titanic situation in our own lives.
I sometimes get too comfortable in my own skin. Perhaps it’s a streak of success at home or work, or maybe it’s a sense of pride that I feel in my own abilities.
When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom. Proverbs 11:2
Inevitably, I then experience a “bump” that exposes my weaknesses. Life brings events that us that knock us down and can crush our spirit.
Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18
The key to life is keeping a humble spirit….a prayerful, grateful spirit that guides our thoughts and activities.
For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Luke 14:11
Spending time in God’s word keeps us centered and humble. If we make our daily walk with Jesus our first priority, we will be better prepared to deal with life’s Titanic “bumps.”
My prayer this weekend is to willingly let go of any pockets of pride in my life. I desire an attitude of service, love and humility.
And let me know how I may pray for you.
My job requires that I work with college students. And I love it.
I find that the best way to connect with our students is to go where they gather. I see many students in meetings around campus, but to really understand them…to really hear them…I need to interact with them outside my office.
I often eat lunch in the campus cafeteria. I attend their athletic events and intramural games. My wife and I invite them into our home for dinner.
I even ride horses with them (talk about getting out of your comfort zone…).
When you go to students in informal settings, they tend to talk more. They share more. You just have to be there.
If you abide in me, and my words in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. John 15:7
How often do we think about this in our relationship with our Heavenly Father? We have complete access. He’s always there…exactly where we are…willing to listen.
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Mark 11:24
God desires a close relationship with us. He longs to hear our fears and our hopes.
Call to me and I will answer you, and tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. Jeremiah 33:3
He is our comfort and our hope.
My prayer this week is to become more diligent in my prayer life. I need to be more intentional in accessing God through prayer. I know he longs to listen.
I know He’s always there for me.
Please let me know how to pray for you.
Last night I spent an hour filling out my NCAA tournament brackets. An hour.
I love this time of year. Colleges, their teams, their campuses, their alumni and their fans all dream about deep runs through the games. Upsets occur. Buzzer-beating shots decide outcomes. And Cinderella teams make unpredictable runs through the tourney.
I’m as guilty as anyone about getting excited about the games in the tournament. I’ll watch as many live games as I can, and listen to others on the radio and computer.
I get consumed. And last night- I jumped over the edge into full-fledged March Madness.
What if I put that much daily effort into my walk with Jesus?
Do not make idols or set up an image or a sacred stone for yourselves, and do not place a carved stone in your land to bow down before it. I am the Lord your God. Leviticus 26:1
I get distracted too easily. I let daily challenges and fun diversions (like NCAA basketball) take my attention away from my pursuit of Christ.
I create idols. And I tend to focus on the temporary and fun rather than seeking the joy and fulfillment that comes from a close relationship with Jesus.
Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” John 14:23
My prayer this week is to identify those things that keep me from focusing on Jesus. I want to eliminate the idols in my life that keep me from fully pursuing Christ.
The tournament will end later this month. God’s love for us is eternal.
Please let me know how I may pray for you.
I was ambushed by a frustrated person this week, who was angry about a situation at work.
I listened for about ten minutes. At the end of their tirade, I was asked to “fix it.”
My response was to ask this person what solutions they had developed. What were the possible scenarios they had thought about to address their frustration?
“I thought that was your job…” was their response. “That’s why I came to you…so you can fix this.”
I suggested a couple of ways to address the issue, but neither option was acceptable to the person.
I asked them to take some time to reflect on possible solutions to their problem. If they couldn’t develop alternatives, I would need to move ahead with my own ideas on resolution.
I guess it’s a pet peeve of mine. If someone comes to me with a problem- they should at least bring a potential solution.
I’m such a hypocrite in my spiritual relationship with God, however. I realized this yesterday when I looked at my prayer journal.
I’m a complainer.
Oh….I realize that we are told to bring our concerns to God.
Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. I Peter 5:7
Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. Psalm 55:22
But my prayer notes looked like a laundry list of situations that I wanted God to “fix.” Instead if asking for wisdom and discernment on how to deal with each problem- I just laid it at His feet.
I had also done a great job of casting my cares, but very little to reflect on the great things that God was creating in my life.
I was complaining, but not submitting.
I was pointing out the problems, but not focusing on the blessings.
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! Psalms 106:1
My prayer this week is to spend less time complaining to God. I want to first focus on all the blessings He has granted me and acknowledge all of the good that God is stirring in my life.
I also want to ask for wisdom when dealing with life’s problems.
Please let me know how I may pray for you.