Blessed be the Lord my Rock, Who trains my hands for war, And my fingers for battle.Psalms 144:1 NKJV
I had a dream where I was part of an army that was made up of several armies (just like Israel with its several tribes, each having its own army). Something alarming happened that drove us all to go see what might be the problem. In order to have an elevated view of what was happening, we ran up a wooden balcony overlooking the fence of our camp to the outside, the wooden platform looked like a watchtower and served as a muster point.
I want to encourage you in this season of great travails.
The burden of the times we find ourselves in requires a great deal of discipline. Discipline to study, to research, to pray, to fast, to write and the list goes on and on. Please don’t let your limitations discourage you. If you fail, get up again, shake off the dust and pick up from where you left off. Never back down, and never give in. Keep pushing forward.
Someone said, “Motivation is doing something when you feel like doing it. Discipline is doing something regardless of how you feel.”
While this is true, we must all bear in mind that the end point of discipline is motivation. We start by doing things regardless of how we feel about it until we are doing it because we feel like doing it every time.
Discipline is the science of rewiring yourself to move from the comfort zone to the learning zone… To the point where your learning zone becomes your comfort zone and your comfort zone becomes your danger zone.
In fact, discipline rearranges the entire spectrum of the trio-zone – the comfort zone, the learning zone and the danger zone. Discipline re-wires you to redefine all three to empower your competitive muscle.
“Comfort” becomes Danger, Danger becomes a learning curve, and Learning becomes comfortable.
Hurt people tend to raise a shield, a form of defense mechanism, to protect themselves from future hurts. These shields can come in different forms. Some choose not to trust again (reasoning that if they don’t have expectations then they won’t have disappointments). Some choose not to feel again (their logic here is that if they can’t feel love, then neither can they feel hurt). For such, relationship is just contractual.
There is a law of sowing and reaping as the scriptures below will show, but to be properly understood, let me say this first.
Giving should be an act of faith. For where your treasure is there your heart will be also. In other words, the thing you value most is what you spend money on the most. And the scriptures advise us to place our value in the things of God. We do this by how well we give cheerfully to the things of God.
There are two major reasons people give in their defense against paying tithe. The first is that it is an Old Testament practice. The second is that there is no record of it as a New Testament practice.
Both arguments are wrong.
Let’s look at some New Testament scriptures that point to the relevance of tithe in the New Testament.
The idea that the believer is meant to eat his or her tithe instead if giving it to church is based on a major misconception. In the Old Testament, there were three sorts of tithes to be paid from the people, besides those from the Levites to the priests;
I read the conversation between an atheist and a renowned Christian who is also an intellectual and I realized how much knowledge we have attained as a church and how much such height of knowledge might be costing us.
In the conversation, the atheist asked some questions and the Christian intellectual gave responses that I cannot help but say fell short of the right answers. It appeared to me that the great Christian intellectual just wanted to ‘fix’ the error of this atheist so much so that he lost him in the process.
Lesson one: People don’t want to be fixed, they want to be heard. They might NEED fixing, but it’s next to impossible to meet a ‘need’ that is veiled with a ‘want’ without first meeting that ‘want’.
Correcting other people’s error is a very delicate matter and requires a great deal of maturity and experience to handle. It is just like handling uranium, you don’t leave it to everyday people to handle, not even to those who know how dangerous the substance can be. In such a delicate matter, it is best to leave it to those who are better trained, experienced and more importantly, better equipped to handle such hazardous materials.
Handling other people’s error is no different. You must know the ethics involved and the decorum required.
Lessons from a discussion between a five-year-old and his father.
A young boy of 5 asked his father, ‘’Dad, why do we pay tax?’’ The father went on and on about how taxpayer’s money is used to fix roads, fund security and education and he listed so many other uses appealing to logic and reason. He explained why tax should be paid but the young boy was still not persuaded by his father’s reply. Then the father said, “Even Jesus said, ‘Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar'”.
Then the young child jumped at that answer, “Dad! That’s exactly my point. Caesar died over 2000 years ago, why do we still pay taxes to him?”
From this story, we can clearly see that the effective teacher is not the one who simply ‘knows his onions’ or the one who can merely communicate his points fluently.
On the contrary, the effective teacher understands his audience (not just his onions) and makes a conscious effort to connect with them (not just to communicate).