Archive for January, 2010

Turning Pits Into Stepping Stones


A young man who volunteers a little of his time to help me out every Saturday likes a Christian Rock group named Falling Up.  I was reminded of this when I was given a thought this morning as I was reading through the book of Proverbs.
 
We are able to utilize our pits as stepping stones if we only let God transform us!  When we fall, God can make us fall up, and not down.  Lord help us see the error of our way and use it as a learning experience that can be used as a step up on our life’s journey! 
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Addictions are Filthy Habits


     This afternoon I saw a woman behind the steering wheel of the car in front of me hanging her cigarette out the window while we were waiting for the light to change.  Just before the light changed, she accidentally dropped her cigarette and I watched as it rolled under her car.  What happened next simply amazed me.  The light had just changed when she proceeded to put her car in Park and open the car door and reach under her car to get her cigarette and then proceeded to smoke it once again after it had rolled around in the road filth.  She apparently is so addicted to her filthy habit that she wasn’t about to lose even one cigarette, even if she had to stop traffic to get that filthy thing and get a few more drags from it.
     After I became very critical in spirit, I had to stop and remember what a fool I had once been in my teenage years.  I succumbed to the temptation of smoking as a teen.  My dad would even buy my cigarettes for the first year until he decided he could no longer afford to support my habit besides his own.  When I ran out of "dad’s" cigarettes, I became so desperate for a cigarette that I began walking through the neighborhood looking on the ground for a partially smoked cigarette that I could light up and give myself a nicotine fix.  I eventually found a half smoked cigarette and was enthralled by the opportunity to finally appease my addiction.  But just as I was about to put it to my mouth and light it up, in just the nick of time I must say, I came to my senses and realized what a disgusting thing I was about to do.  It was then that I realized how weak I had become and that I , me, of all people, was terribly and disgustingly addicted to something.  I then decided to quit, right there on the spot, cold turkey, never to return to smoke a cigarette ever since. 
     Cigarettes are the most addicting thing I’ve ever encountered and I continued to have cravings for nearly twenty years.  My cravings for cigarettes only stopped in the last 12 years, which is probably attributed to finally not having jobs that required working alongside smokers.  What filthy habit do you have?  What will it take for you to come to your senses and admit your addiction?  See your habits for what they are:  disgusting and filthy addictions.  If you’ve been bound by your addictions for too long to overcome them on your own, admit that as well and get help.  Don’t let your pride take away your potential freedom and victory over addictions.  We all have weaknesses and we all need help from time to time.
     Lastly, and most importantly, if you have not yet received the gift of eternal life from the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, then take this opportunity to be welcomed into the family of God.  He desires to make you his son or daughter and to set you free.  Jesus is quoted in the Holy Scriptures as saying, "Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.  And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever.  Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed." – John 8:34-36
 
God Bless You On Your Journey!
 
In Christ,
 
Jim 
 

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Lies & the Father of Lies


Most people lie to cover up their sin, even when they won’t admit that they even sinned.  We try to cover up being found out doing the thing that is unacceptable in our peers’ eyes, if not our own.  We need to repent and try not to do those things that tempt us to lie in the first place, but come clean and admit our shortcomings when we succumb to temptation instead of lying about it.  Satan, on the other hand, doesn’t believe in sin.  He claims to be God’s equal and therefore holy and without sin.  His lies are all about devising evil.  He especially loves to trip up Christians with his lies (temptations) and when he succeeds, he often times snares us again when we believe the lie that we can make it right by lying about it. 
 
Lord help us to know you well, to know your voice.  Help us to recognize Satan’s voice as well so we can have the opportunity to renounce him whenever he tempts us with his lies.  We desire to worship the Father of Truth and break all ties to the Father of Lies.  With You we can break all bonds that Satan would place on us!  Hallelujah!
 
In Jesus’ Holy Name,
 
Amen

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Teens & Gangs


     One of the many temptations many teenagers come across is the temptation to join a gang.  This temptation has been around for a long long time.  Young men and even young women with an out of control rebellious spirit have been drawn away by gangs or even started gangs of their own.  In fact, one of the first man’s (Adam’s) sons,  Cain, started the first gang. 
     It is very important to let your teenager be an integral contributing part of the family.  Even if the family is a one parent family, the teen can be made to feel a closeness to the family and a contributing part of it where he or she is making important contributions that no other person can make.  Never belittle a teen’s thoughts or attempts to contribute to the family.  Always discuss disagreements with civility and respect the teen as an adult.  Always focus on and encourage his or her potential.  The teen is actually seeking direction from you and testing the waters.  Do not discourage their curiosity and testing of the waters but give specific reasons why you disagree, using life experience if applicable.  Teens, like adults, tend to want to learn by other’s mistakes rather than that old school of hard knocks. 
     The childhood experience has already had its lessons and most teens would rather find out the specifics why certain things are bad or don’t work rather than going down a path of heartache.  They hate wasting time in the school of hard knocks as much as you do.  They would much rather spend time having good clean fun without consequences than imagined fun that leads them down a road that ages them too quickly.
 
‘My son, if sinners entice you, do not consent.  If they say, "…Cast in your lot among us, let us all have one purse."  Keep your foot from their path; for their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed blood.  So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain; it takes away the life of its owners.’  Proverbs 1:10,11,14,15,16,19

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They Walked With God


 

The scriptures tell us that “Enoch walked with God…” and God was so pleased with Enoch that “Enoch walked with God and was not, for the Lord took him”. The scriptures also tell us that “Noah walked with God”. This also pleased the Lord so much that the Lord spared him, his wife, his three sons and their wives and two of every kind of living creatures from the destruction of all flesh. God made Noah the new father of all mankind and a savior of all living creatures.

Men tend to be very selfish creatures. Oftentimes, when we do seek God, we seek Him for selfish reasons. We constantly present Him with petitions and requests that would ultimately, if we are honest, mostly benefit ourselves. How many times do we seek to walk with God, to go wherever He goes, and invite Him to be with us on the journey of life?

Though man was cast out of the Garden of Eden, he was not cast out of God’s presence. We are yet able to walk with God, just as Adam and Eve did, Enoch did, and Noah did and thereby please God.

Lord, may my epitaph say that I – Jim Spiegle – walked with God.

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A New Year, A New Blog


Well I went and did it now!  I started a blog to share my thoughts and experiences in my life’s journey.  Here I’ll share my thoughts and/or experiences from the past, present, and what I believe and/or hope for the future.  Please feel free to comment and share your thoughts and experiences.  Whether your thoughts and/or experiences are similar or are in sharp contrast to mine (or anything in between) I would like to hear from you!
 
 
Live Long and Prosper!
 
Jim Spiegle 

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