“May it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.” ~ Tolkien

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I (Jesus) have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” ~ John 10:10

If I was to to tell you I had a life verse, this would be it. For as long as I can remember any time I saw the numbers 10:10 on a digital clock, ClockI would say this passage out loud. And it was these very words of Jesus which held despair and darkness at bay on the worst day of my life. I call this passage a defining Scripture; one which helps you know what is going on in your life at any given moment. It’s pretty simple too; if you have been stolen from, there is death or destruction in your life, then it is from the thief, aka the devil. If your life is rich and full, then it comes from Jesus. John 10:10 shows you who is behind every situation you face in life.

On April 6, 2010 my youngest son Noah in a moment of weakness took his own life. There were no warning signs, he made a decision (albeit a dumb one) and ended his life. In the hours following Noah’s death, I was faced with a choice; to turn from God or towards Him. It was during this time, standing by the trampoline my kids had spent countless hours on, I began to question God. As my questioning turned quickly into anger, I began a downward spiral into an abyss of darkness I had never before experienced. Doubt, confusion and anger began to fill my mind. It was just then as my thoughts were becoming darker, that a sliver of light broke through and I snapped out of it.

Recognizing the voice of God in my spirit, He brought John 10:10 back to my mind. As I stood there in my pain pondering it, the realization came to me about who was actually to blame for my son’s death; it was the devil and not God. As the light of this knowledge flooded my mind pushing back the dark thoughts of the enemy I stood up straighter and thanked God for saving me in that instant. From that moment on I was able to move forward and lead my family down the path towards recovery in the way He wanted. It’s taken years for my family to move from tragedy to healing but we would never had made it this far without God’s Word guiding us.

I’m nothing special, God doesn’t like me better than you, He wants to use Scripture the same way in your life, but you have to want it. You can do it, all you have to do is start reading the Bible, putting His Word into your heart. Had I not quoted John 10:10 to myself for so many years, I would never have been able to hear God speak it to me so clearly when it really mattered. You can do it, don’t wait, get into the Bible today and see how far God takes you!

Living in a story much larger than my own…won’t you join me? You Can Do It!

 

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Where Are Your Dreams Taking You?

Some men are not satisfied with the status quo, or their place in the world. They feel as if they were meant for more; something on a much grander scale than just working for a living. These men tend to be readers, thinkers and dreamers; the type of  men other men are envious and jealous of. But what is it which sets these men apart from the rest?

Is there a gene in their DNA which other men do not possess? Or are they just lucky and therefore fate or divine providence has handed them the lion’s share while shortchanging others? I believe the answer is a definite no, but I also know there is something inside of these men which drive them forward where other men are scared or refuse to go.

The answer is faith. Now before you dismiss what I say as religious hooey balooey, hear me out. The definition of faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things you cannot see in the natural world. What are you hoping for? What is your evidence? When you dream, what is it you see? Do you even dream at all?

These men travel the path others won’t and they possess the ability to see themselves with the things they are dreaming of. They actively pursue those things in their minds before they ever see them in the natural.

I must admit, there are too many days where I sit in my recliner and go through the mind numbing ritual of watching television instead of reading to improve, or taking an online course to develop and learn a new skill. Unfortunately I’ve bought into the mindset of, “I worked hard today, I deserve this.” While I don’t believe watching television is wrong, I must ask myself why do I spend so much time doing this instead of reading?

Perhaps rather than just coming home from work each night and planting myself in my chair I should go for a walk and dream about those things which make my heart come alive. But what should I dream about doing you might ask? Anything and everything. What is something you would like to do? Start seeing yourself doing it. Let’s say you want to take bike trips around the country; begin seeing yourself in the places you want to visit. Don’t think about the cost, just imagine everything surrounding what you want to do and see yourself doing it.

Here’s the thing about dreaming; it doesn’t cost anything but your time and the sky’s the limit. Well unless you dream of being an astronaut, then I guess space would actually be the limit. Start with something you really want to do and imagine every aspect of what it would take to do it. Again, don’t think about the cost, just imagine everything you can about the activity. Dream big too, like they always say, go big or go home.

Be one of the men other men envy by living out your dreams. Start today, don’t wait. Dream it and you’ll end up doing it. Now you know what I think, what do you think?