I take a regular exercise class several times a week. On Fridays, the teacher dismisses with “Come back on Monday and we’ll start this process all over again.”
She always laughs when she says it, but it makes me feel like a gerbil on those round exercise balls that spin over and over. You can get in a routine, even a good routine and a sense of boredom sets in.
Get up in the morning, head off to work, or maybe you’re a mom with little ones. You feed them, change diapers and you do it all over again the next day. When my children were little, one would come and ask when I’d fix dinner. I’d get a little silly and say. “I fed you yesterday. You want to eat again.”
But you know what I mean. Ecclesiastes a time for everything under heaven: a time to bake, and a time to discard what was baked;
Have you ever wanted to live an extraordinary life? What makes life have pizzazz? I believe having a purpose does that. You live for something bigger than yourself. The apostle Paul said he longed to know Jesus Christ and to become holy like he would be after he was raised from the dead.
An indescribable life? An un-explainable life?
My guest today is Erica Wiggenhorn, who just completed a Bible study on Acts, An Unexplainable Life.
2:10 What is one of your favorite lessons from Acts?
3:45 Give us examples of how the Holy Spirit worked differently in each life?
5:45 God’s exciting creativity.
6:30 Similarities in the OT stories and the tongues of fire spoken of in Acts
9:20 How did the disciples change after the Holy Spirit came? Especially Peter?
13:00 Explain the importance of the clouds in the ascension of Christ?
15:13 Share the role prayer played in the book of Acts. How is it important today?
16:55 How was Stephen’s life unexpected?
19:25 How can the book of Acts encourage us today?
I can recall when I was a child in class. We were getting ready to study the human body, and I was so excited to learn what my internal organs did. I had some strange idea that my organs did wonderful things for the world. How disappointing to discover they merely kept me alive. Of course, in adolescence, the question of identity rose.Those questions are important to ask because it’s difficult to live without meaning.On the other hand, it’s very easy to build our self-worth around what we do.
When I finished school, I became a nurse, but I gave up that career to raise five children. That made me really sad, but I’ve been giving up my whole life in some ways. Later I found myself as a young mother who nursed her babies, but that didn’t last either. I grieved that role when I weaned my youngest child. Then I saw myself as a homeschool mother. That job lasted longer, but that distinction disappeared also. Each time my job description changed, I felt pain and had to adjust. I had to rethink life as a child of God. Someone Jesus loved and died for, but that transition can be tough.
Sometimes life really falls apart. How can we pull the shreds of life back together? How can we get through those times of disappointment when we wonder who we are?
Cynthia Rutchti is my guest. She has written Song of Silence. In this novel, the main character loses her gifting and finds herself afloat.
4:30 The main character, Lucy, was giving to others from her gift of music. How can we find that sweet spot so we can bless those around us?
6:30 Lucy was based on a real person who ministered through music.
8:40 Music contains rests, and Lucy taught her students to ‘play the rests.’ How can we do that by using those hard times in life?
10:10 What if we resist that reset time?
11:20 What does a healthy identity look like? How can Christians get there?
13:50 How can we achieve a healthy marriage in later years like Lucy and her husband?
16:25 Lucy’s family did things to comfort her she didn’t like. How can we avoid facing that in a crisis?
19:00 Lucy’s doctor sent her to a club. What was that great idea about?
I don’t know if you’ve ever had a time when you felt panicked, but I have. My youngest son is disabled. With numerous overlapping issues, he’s severe. I was homeschooling him, and I saw intelligence despite his barriers. A series of events led us to seek complete testing. The idea of testing bothered me because I worried how well he could perform with the number of problems he had. In time found a neuro-psychiatrist who came highly recommended. The doctor administered test over a few days.
At last came our final appointment. My husband and I would meet with the doctor for test results and a final diagnosis. That was the scariest day. The diagnosis he received would impact him for the rest of his life.I can recall my heart pounding and my chest tightening at the thought of driving to the office. I survived by praising God. All day I sought the Lord. I praised him for the air conditioning in the car, the blue sky, the car, the fluffy clouds, the dress I had on, my favorite color. Those prayers kept me calm enough to hear what the doctor had to say.
Think about the words Paul wrote in Philippians four: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and thanksgiving make your request known to God and the peace that passes all understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.” Those words are easy to say. Doing it can be much harder.
Today I have Maureen Pratt. She’s written a book called, Don’t Panic, which teaches how to prepare for a crisis.
A married woman soon realizes her husband doesn’t think like she does, and that difference may create tension. A man tends to be goal-oriented and less comfortable expressing emotion. Whereas women are nurturers and long for safety and security to raise our offspring. We can multi-task. He must focus, and when he does, he won’t hear the kids fighting. The distinctions can make it hard to work together.
Let’s go back in history to learn how the creator made us. We know the story of creation. God showed Adam the animals and asked him to name them. I can imagine that. God had the male and female of every species march past him. It probably took all day for him to finish his job. Doubtless, by the time his chore was over, he came to realize he was missing his counterpart. Then the LORD God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” (Genesis 2:18) The words ‘helper fit’ means corresponding to . We are the other half. We are opposites.
Because of our design, male and female responses vary. For instance, if we women face a new and difficult challenge, often we want hugs and encouragement. Maybe we’ll need some sympathy if the transition gets tough. Compare that to King David. He was about to die and hand the kingdom over to his son, Solomon. He said, “I am about to go the way of all the earth. Be strong, and show yourself a man.” Men don’t like sympathy. They prefer someone express confidence they can handle hard times. We don’t quite understand that.
A frustrated woman wants to vent her frustrations. If we talk to another woman, we’ll get a listening ear and comfort. Husbands will appear unconcerned about our emotions while they try to fix the problem.
Today Deane Groseclose is my guest. She is the founder of Cross Purpose Ministries and counsels people who have issues in their relationships.
What is time? Seconds become minutes, and minutes become hours. Likewise, hours become days and years. Those minutes, hours and days make a lifetime. The rhythm of time controls our lives, and in our busy world, we often feel we never have enough. God created time and he has an eternal overarching plan he’s working out. We know he cares about when things happen. He told Abraham that “… At the appointed time I will return to you. . . and Sarah shall have a son.” Solomon said, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted, a time to break down and a time to build up…”
The apostle Paul added to that thought in Ephesians: “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” And in Psalms we see, “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” As I age, I realize I won’t live forever here on earth. It makes me more serious about how I use time.
In order to make wise use of those moments God gave us, we’ll need to learn time management. Someone noted that if we did all the things experts recommend, like brushing your teeth a certain number of minutes, or getting the correct amount of exercise, you’d need more that twenty-four hours in a day. That means we need to decide what’s important to us and set goals.
Sheryl Giesbrecht is my guest today. When she faced stage four cancer, she gave a lot of thought to her remaining years. Listen and learn from her.
Today’s media overwhelms us with talk of the sensual side of love. Clothing, perfume, toothpaste, and other merchandise will help you achieve‘sexy’ or ‘hot.’ TV and movies depict unmarried couples engaging in sex as if were no more important than lunch. As Christians, we believe sex belongs in marriage. The world might see our convictions as negative and prudish. But, on the positive side, since sex belongs in marriage, we should embrace and encourage sensuality in that context.
Years ago when I was shopping with my girls, I stopped to admire a fancy nightgown. One of my daughters looked horrified and commented that only a prostitute would wear such a garment. I knew right there it was time for a lesson, and I said,”Don’t ever call a married woman a prostitute.” Looking back, I probably came on too strong, because she frowned and walked off, rolling her eyes. But that’s a message the church needs to give to married couples and our young people. We should be shouting a big yes when we discuss sex after the ceremony.
I encourage women to be careful about relationships with men other than their husbands. Hormones work well. Things can make things get out of hand and create problems. I tend to be a little distant or even a little cold in that situation. Often I’ll address the man’s wife if she’s present. However, a woman can and should let go with her hubby. Come on, ladies. Flirt a little. It’s fun and appropriate. Check out Song of Solomon 1:2 where Solomon and his wife talk about their love for each other:”Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth! For your love is better than wine.”
Many of us, however, get a bit stuck because of our self-image or a painful past, but there’s hope. Shannon Ethridge is my guest for Valentine’s Day. She has geared her entire ministry toward helping women get past their hangups and enjoy sex.
To learn more about Shannon and her ministry, click here.