Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Self Control/Addiction

2 Peter 2:19 (NLT) They promise freedom but they themselves are slaves to sin and corruption.  For you are a slave to what controls you.

   Addiction is such an ugly word.  The world sees it and cringes.  Much more, the world sees an addict, and cringes, thinking to stay far away from anything resembling addiction.  It is something producing images of people hiding out on street corners or alleyways, shooting up heroin or smoking crack.  You may see someone snort cocaine or even Oxycontin.  Alcohol is a drug that people turn to every day to cope with problems they feel they can't handle.  There are those who start out taking medications after a surgery or other medical reasons, but continue after the medical problems resolve.  They become addicted just as easily to it as people do to other drugs or alcohol.  You picture addicts homeless, on the streets, panhandling for change, or doing whatever they have to do to get by.   But you probably work with a "functioning" addict at your job, and just don't realize it.  So many learn to cope with the addiction on an everyday basis and never become desperate or homeless.  Many do drugs recreationally and deny they are addicts.  But the truth of the matter is, they are.  Any time a person does any drugs in any form; pill, drink, smoke, or snort and then looks forward to, or can't wait to do it again, is an addict.  Doesn't matter if it was 15 minutes ago, or 15 days ago.  It's still an addiction, just to a different degree. 
    If you yourself are an addict, lived with or loved an addict, are a recovering addict, just know an addict, or have seen an addict, just know that God loves them too.  God loves that addict just as much as He loves you.  Addicts don't want to be an addict.  They don't want to be a slave to the drug.  Yes it is a choice, but it is a vicious cycle that is very, very hard to break.  Bodies and minds become controlled by drugs.  Drugs changes their brains in many ways that we can't always understand.  Long term addicts will never be quite the same as they were.   Depression plays a large part in an addicts life.  Addicts love their families just like you do, and want to to eat, live and function in a nice home just like you.  But there is always hope for every addict.  God is that hope!
   When people get lost in the world, lose a job, lonely and depressed, they sometimes turn to what other people share with them.  We share many things with our family and friends, or even strangers.  Do we share our hope with others?  Without hope in our lives, what do we have?    Without hope, we tend to give up.  Hope may be the most uplifting thing we share with someone who feels lost and alone.  Hopelessness can become addicting.  When life gets tough, where does you hope come from?  My hope comes from God.  God has carried me personally,  through some tremendously tough times brought on by addictions.  Addictions of loved ones in my life, from an early age, up through my adult life.  I have even dealt with addiction myself.  It is an ongoing process.  Something I struggle with everyday.  But I do Praise God that He is with me everyday, loving each of us, despite our ugliness!
   Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)  "For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord.  They are plans for good, and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope."

  Someone you know, may need to hear about hope from the Lord.  And the only way they may hear about God, is from YOU.  Instead of turning your eyes from what is right in front of you, try turning your eyes upon Jesus.  There is hope that He wants to give to you so that you may pass it on to someone else.....................................................


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Regrets-I've Had A Few

      Regrets are sort of like ice cream sandwiches;  they stay with you only as long as you let them!   Regret just kind of hangs around your stomach, like that thin clingy shirt you hate to wear, but it's the only one clean!
     It's only human nature for us to dwell on what we have done wrong in the past.  Co-workers, friends, family, don't let us forget what we have done wrong in the past!  Believe me, I know what it feels like to live with regret, you know, a few things I did "my way"?   They didn't turn out for the best.  It's only because I wanted to do what I wanted to do at the time.  I was alittle young and selfish. 
     As I've grown older, alittle more mature, and more importantly, become closer to God and His Word, I know to listen to Him.  God has our best interest at heart.  He knows what He's doing!  God loves us DESPITE our PAST!  He doesn't care what we have done.  God loves us unconditionally.  We therefore, should love our brothers and sisters in Christ, unconditionally.  To God, when we accept Him as Lord and Savior, and are baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, you receive the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2:38)                 
      There is no time in anyone's life to spend minutes, hours, days, nights, weeks, months, or even years regreting anything you may have done to yourself or anyone else.  Take the time to confess your sins to the Almighty God, who loves you no matter what you have done. I repeat that to you.  No matter what you have done. (Psalm 51:1-2)" Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love.  Because of your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins.  Wash me clean from my guilt.  Purify me from my sins. "  
       God loves you.  Change your life around to something beautiful and new.  I started my life around again, thirty three years ago.  It was the best thing I ever did.  Don't live your life with regrets.  You can't look back and live in the past, because the past isn't there!  There is only the future.  You have to determine what your future is going to be.  Only you can. 

Peace  &  Pass it on........................................

Friday, August 27, 2010

Nagging Hunger............

Do you find yourself getting ready for bed in the same way every single night? You know, wash your face, brush your teeth, put on your jammies, get something to drink, snuggle up in bed, get your covers just right, cozy up with the remote control. Oh yeah, and don't forget to put the dog up either! Just when you think your ready to watch that movie you've been waiting on all evening, you start wallowing around under your covers 'cause something is just not comfortable! This is starting to become a nightly habit though and it's not good for me! I always get hungry when I get in bed to go to sleep! Arrrg!!! Well , after all, it has been an hour and a half since you've had Anything to eat last! LOL That thick grilled cheeseburger and homemade fries you had for dinner is LONG gone! I can just walk in my kitchen and get a big spoon of peanut butter and a banana! Yummy!! Yes, I said peanut butter and banana in the same sentence! Well?!? I am a true southerner, so what did you expect?
Did you know that Arkansas is the 4th poorest state in America? Arkansas also has the HIGHEST rate of childhood hunger in the United States! How sad is that for our little ones? I wonder if these children thinks no one cares? We can start helping by checking out The Arkansas Rice Depot/Hunger Project. November 6th will be a day of fasting and the money you would normally spend on your food for that day would be donated to the Arkansas Rice Depot to help feed a hungry child. What a difference YOU can make and you also would be feeling just a small portion of what they feel every day of their little lives. Would you just consider looking over the web site?
In Isaiah 58 God tells us to share our food with the hungry. Have you ever REALLY been hungry? No one should have to be hungry here in our homeland. Or anywhere in the world, for that matter. Can we start right here in our own backyard? And then maybe, as God would have it,
(v.11-12) The Lord will guide you continually, watering your life when you are dry and keeping you healthy too. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever-flowing spring. Your children will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities. Then you will be known as the people who rebuild their walls and cities.