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Archive for January, 2018

Getting into Shape Spiritually


SALT & LIGHT: There is no way to reach our goal without doing the painstaking work necessary to get there. If this seems like a daunting task, you’re right. It is. Getting in shape requires consistent, strenuous effort, performed routinely over time. Wishful thinking will not get you into shape. Hard work will. It’s the same with getting into shape spiritually. Being slipshod will not work. We must be as diligent about this as we are about anything else we want in life.
Before we direct ourselves to the specifics about how to accomplish our goal, make a determination to be courageous. It’s important to remember that God wants you to be free from your debilitating thoughts and strongholds more than you do. This should be a comforting thought.
Jack Watts
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Take Almighty God at His Word


SALT & LIGHT: Denial has a serious negative impact on us—one which we rarely consider. Sometimes, we don’t think about it at all. Denial of God’s reality darkens our understanding, while simultaneously hardening our hearts. This is something no Christian wants or expects, but this is definitely what happens.
This also does disservice to our non-Christian friends. It deprives them of the opportunity to know the truth. Thinking we are sparing them by being nice, we actually champion their darkness by refusing to point them to the light.
 
Mitigating God’s truth to be politically correct may make us popular, based on conforming to the pantheism of American Progressive values, but that’s all it does. Tragically, we have come to apologize for God’s truth about nearly every social issue that confronts Christians in the twenty-first century.
 
As bad as this problem is, there is one that is just as bad. It’s legalism. A large number of Christians confront false beliefs in the power of their own strength, making needless enemies out of many in the process. They either forget or don’t care that truth delivered without love is abusive.
 
When we stand for what God says, but do so in the power of our flesh, we do not produce the fruit the Holy Spirit intends. Instead, we generate hard-hearted enmity. This may show strength of character, but it produces bitterness and antagonism among those who are the recipients of our harangues. There is nothing attractive about a person like this. Hard-hearted legalism is never God’s will. Nevertheless, more people are apologetic about their Christian beliefs than legalistic.
 
Not taking God at His word is our greatest problem. It’s important to realize that refusing to take God’s truth literally will darken your understanding and make discerning His will far more problematic. Additionally, denying God’s truth repeatedly will eventually result in you developing a hard heart.
 
Jack Watts
 
JACK’S BOOKS: mcgeeandme.net/boos

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SALT & LIGHT: Strongholds have a dramatic influence on the lives of each of us, impacting both believers and non-believers, whether any of us like it, realize it, or want it. Strongholds are a universal condition for Fallen Man. They are lies most of us have believed our entire lives. They are so foundational to us that they have become our core truths, despite originating from the Father of Lies.
Because they repudiate reality, which is God’s stated truth, they debilitate us and keep us from enjoying the abundant life Christ promised; “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly,” (John 10:10, NAS).
We cannot break these strongholds through our own initiative. When we try, we fail every time—not just most of the time, every time. The Holy Spirit must break them for us, through His power and not through our own efforts.
Our part in the process is simply to be aware of the strongholds and to be desirous of having them removed from our thought process. As people born of God’s Spirit, our role is to be willing to allow our minds to be renewed. We must allow them to become obedient to the thoughts of Christ.

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SALT & LIGHT: Being a patriotic Christian citizen is important. As Christians, we take the Constitution seriously. We understand that it is the foundation upon which our democracy stands. Additionally, the Rule of law is fundamental to who we are as a people. Nobody is above the law, or at least nobody is supposed to be above it. For nearly all of us, these are deeply held convictions, but we maintain numerous others as well.
We firmly believe that our rights are inalienable and that Almighty God has bestowed these rights upon us. Our forefathers didn’t just make them up out of thin air. Because they have come from our Creator, this means the government cannot take our fundamental rights away from us, nor is any governmental entity supposed to be able to infringe upon these rights. They are our rights by divine mandate—period. Being inalienable, this ensures that they cannot be revoked or nullified—not under any circumstances.
Despite this being true, our rights are constantly being assaulted, especially by the Progressive Left. Their attack is relentless.
Our inalienable rights are our birthright as citizens of the United States. More than any other aspect of our identity as Americans, these rights are what have differentiated us from other nations, and they has made us the envy of the entire world.
Jack Watts
JACK’S BOOKS: mcgeeandme.net/books

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SALT & LIGHT: Our culture, influenced by the spirit of deception, has lost its understanding of the word, “Truth.” It’s a term that no longer reflects anything definite, especially when it comes to the nature of God.
To speak of God’s truth openly, as if it is real, is to invite ridicule, scorn, and contempt from Progressives. In America, just about any perspective is tolerated, other than being a Bible-believing Christian. Even marginal Christians are accepted, at least to some degree.
It seems like the only people who are not tolerated are those who believe God’s Word is completely true and without error. In our nation, which is dominated by Progressive ideology, rejecting God’s authority has become a mark of sophistication. Maintaining such a position validates one’s erudition. Their rejection of us is accompanied by contemptuous castigation, which nearly always intimidates people of faith. Most Christians have become accustomed to cowing to the pantheistic bullying of Progressives.
Nevertheless, it is a significant error to believe we require the approval of people like these, especially when it comes at the expense of abandoning our core beliefs. Christ stated that the world rejected Him and it would do the same with us.
This is not an insignificant statement. Everybody wants to be liked, but not at the expense of abandoning foundational convictions. It’s too great a price to pay, but this is precisely what millions of Christians do. Tragically, they do so without realizing this will cost them the abundance that is rightfully theirs.

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During our formative years, the people around us, especially our parents and older siblings, are extremely important. It’s through their worldview that we develop our own.
In your life, what your parents accepted as true has become what you believe to be true. It’s through their belief system, which you unknowingly embraced as your own, that you process what was correct or incorrect, true or false, right or wrong.
Your values, from early childhood, were not your own, despite your insistence that they were. You just thought they were. At one time or another, most teens say they never want to be like their mother or their father, only to discover decades later that they are exactly like them. It’s because of the original parental imprint each of us receives, unconsciously embraces, and acts upon consistently throughout life.
There is much that is positive about this imprint, but it is also why nobody who has lived very long can dispute the Scriptural verse that says the sins of the fathers are passed on to their children, grandchildren, and beyond. It’s all based on our original imprint, bestowed upon us by the beliefs, convictions, and actions of our parents. We are the product of the values of our blood relatives more than all other inputs combined.
Even if your parenting was distorted, and you knew that it was, the way you perceive reality would still be influenced dramatically by what you experienced. It’s from this imprint that our foundational strongholds—those that repudiate God’s truth—have been formulated and solidified, becoming fortress-like impediments to accepting reality. Based upon your imprint, your life-long belief system has become solidified.
It’s from this core mapping that you answer the following about yourself. You ask yourself these questions thousands of times:
• Am I a good person or not?
• Do others consider me to be a worthwhile person or not?
• Is my value to myself and to others substantial or limited?
• Am I lovable or unlovable?
• What must I do to be accepted?
• Does God have a purpose for my life or doesn’t He?
• What must I do to be accepted by God?
• Is God trustworthy or not?
• If God’s Word reveals something to be true, can I trust it as much as what I know about life based on my experiences?

Unfortunately, much of what we have been taught is damaging. Instead of being beneficial, helping us to become strong, self-confident adults, what we internalize actually wounds us, making it difficult to love ourselves. We question whether God loves us the way we are or not. Most of us don’t believe He does.

There are millions of children who are unloved by their parents. Kids from homes like these feel devalued, unwanted, and unsafe. Since it’s all they know, to them, feeling this way seems normal. Coming from such negativity creates powerful strongholds, making it difficult for these children to believe Almighty God is loving and caring.

JACK’S BOOKS: mcgeeandme.net/books

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SALT & LIGHT: As we have come to see, Christians in our generation have a problem. We talk about being different, but that’s all it is, talk. In our society, there is very little contrast between being a believer and a non-believer. Our lives lack power because we really don’t utilize the provisions God has made available to us. Because we don’t, we are rendered incapable of being the men and women He has called us to be.
If we are being painstakingly honest with ourselves, we see how badly we have failed in leading our families, our communities, and our nation. Because we are far less salty than we should be, we do not season effectively, and the light we provide is not nearly as bright as it should be. Although there are more Christians in America today than there have ever been, our influence is marginal at best. Even worse, it has been diminishing for decades.
We desire to be effective and productive, but the fruit we produce isn’t quantitatively or qualitatively sufficient to do the job. Quite often, the fruit we generate isn’t the fruit God intends for us to produce.
We want possessions, while He wants us to be fully engaged in His purposes, which frequently have nothing to do with our focus on material acquisition. Because our goals are different than His, we amble through life talking about the abundant life of following God’s will, rather than either being fully engaged in what is required to produce it.
JACK’S BOOKS: mcgeeandme.net/books

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