Monday, March 24, 2014

Climbing Your Dream!

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I... I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference. - Robert Frost

"The four-minute mile: This was the barrier, both physical and psychological, that begged to be broken." Neal Bascomb Many told Roger Bannister his goal was "impossible." For many years, the scientific and athletic communities thought that it was impossible to run a four-minute mile. The event was regarded as something more than a sports record to be broken. This 'impossibility' was viewed by society as an epochal barrier that could not, and, more amazingly, should not be broken. Many people believed if a man to run a mile in less than four minutes the result upon breaking the tape would be instant death.

In his 1935 article entitled "The Ultimate of Human Effort," British track coach Brutus Hamilton had listed the "perfect records beyond which man could never go" for a number of track and field events. He declared that the fastest mile possible would be 4:01.6. By the spring of 1954, Gunder Haegg's world record of 4:01.4 was nine years old, and Hamilton was still insisting no one could run any faster.

"Whether we liked it or not, the four-minute mile had become rather like an Everest -- a challenge to the human spirit," observed Bannister in his newly-reissued autobiography, "The Four-Minute Mile." "It was a barrier that defied all attempts to break it -- an irksome reminder that man's striving might be in vain. The Scandanavians, with their almost excessive reverence for the magic of sport, called it the `Dream Mile.' "

History now reveals that Roger Bannister was the man of this moment! On May 6, 1954, this 25-year-old medical student, committed runner, ran a mile at Oxford University's Iffley Road Track in the time of 3:59.4. Its no wonder Roger Bannister could say, "The man who can drive himself further once the effort gets painful is the man who will win."

Louis. D. Brandeis said, "Most of the things worth doing in the world had been declared impossible before they were done." How many times have we hesitated to venture out of our cocoons and risk what all those around us have determined to be 'impossible'? Peer pressure, societal norms, and traditions keep us stagnant and uncommitted from taking steps toward our dreams. It seems far easier to stay in our comfort zones than to step off the shore of familiarity. "Do not attempt to do a thing unless you are sure of yourself; but do not relinquish it simply because someone else is not sure of you." - Stewart. E. White

Now let me be clear. I am not talking about venturing out to do evil or following after illicit ways. The Word of the Lord says we should not follow after the multitudes to do evil. So our venturing should be within the context of doing what is right for our families and giving back to our communities. All of us have had to endure the snide remarks of another who makes comments from their worldview of impossibilities. Family members, friends, and co-workers are quick to squash any attempt to step out of the known and into the unknown. Fear of failure grips us and leaves us frozen in a frightful fit of all the things bad that could happen! The comfort zone feels good, warm, and fuzzy, but such a zone zaps us of real growth and living up to our full potential. Rather than attempt something new, we are consoled in our complacent progress of staying put in our uncharted waters of a well known shoreline. "The person who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare. The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore." - Dale Carnegie Will Rogers said, "Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there."

The God of possibilities continues to call us out of the fleshly ground of impossibilities! He is not a God who waits for us to make a mistake, but He is a God who is calling us UP and out of carnal living of fleshly boxed in comfort zones! Who knows how many God given talents have been locked up on the carnal shores of our earthly vessels? God has called us to take our talents and grow, not to hide them away in fear! Vaclav Havel said, "Vision is not enough, it must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps, we must step up the stairs." If you want to eat the fruit, you have to take the risks that come with climbing the tree!

As the years pass, it seems we are more disappointed in the things we didn't do than by the ones we did do. How many times have we looked back on our lives and said, "I wish I would have!"? We are experts at making mountains out of molehills! How many times have we finally found the nerve to step out of our comfort zones, only to find that the mountain of fears we had created in our minds was lower than we originally had created?

There is no doubt in my mind, if you are reading this today, there are dreams you have locked away on some distant shore of apprehension. One of the greatest college basketball coaches, John Wooden said, "Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do." Today, I want you to re-examine those dreams and goals that were once the emblem of your vision. Its time to raise up the anchor, throw off the bowlines, and sail away from the safe harbor of complacency. There is a 'rushing mighty wind' awaiting to fill your sails and push you into the Hands of the One who holds the key to ALL possibilities!

Submitted by: Elder David Green

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Answers

God desires a relationship with you. He does this through his body on earth now. That is one of the reasons belonging to a church is necessary. From the first preacher "Adam", until now, God has always used a man to show the people his word.

Jer 42:4 KJV 4 Then Jeremiah the prophet said unto them, I have heardyou; behold, I will pray unto the LORD your God according to your words; and it shall come to pass, that whatsoever thing the LORD shall answer you, I will declare it unto you; I will keep nothing back from you.

Psa 27:7 KJV 7 Hear, O LORD, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me.
Psa 143:1 KJV 1 A Psalm of David. Hear my prayer, O LORD, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness.
Pro 16:1 KJV 1 The preparations of the heart in man, and the answer of the tongue, is from the LORD.
Isa 58:9 KJV 9 Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I am. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;
Eze 14:4, 7 KJV 4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols; ... 7 For every one of the house of Israel, or of the stranger that sojourneth in Israel, which separateth himself from me, and setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to a prophet to enquire of him concerning me; I the LORD will answer him by myself:
Joe 2:19 KJV 19 Yea, the LORD will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:
Luk 13:25 KJV 25 When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are:
1Pe 3:15 KJV 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:
Exd 16:28 KJV 28 And the LORD said unto Moses, How long refuse ye to keep my commandments and my laws?
Exd 20:6 KJV 6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
Lev 22:31 KJV 31 Therefore shall ye keep my commandments, and do them: I am the LORD.Lev 26:3 KJV 3 If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them;
Deu 5:10 KJV 10 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments.
1Ki 9:6 KJV 6 But if ye shall at all turn from following me, ye or your children, and will not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods, and worship them:
2Ki 17:13 KJV 13 Yet the LORD testified against Israel, and against Judah, by all the prophets, and by all the seers, saying, Turn ye from your evil ways, and keep my commandments and my statutes, according to all the law which I commanded your fathers, and which I sent to you by my servants the prophets.
Neh 1:9 KJV 9 But if ye turn unto me, and keep my commandments, and do them; though there were of you cast out unto the uttermost part of the heaven, yet will I gather them from thence, and will bring them unto the place that I have chosen to set my name there.
Pro 3:1 KJV 1 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:
Pro 4:4 KJV 4 He taught me also, and said unto me, Let thine heart retain my words: keep my commandments, and live.
Pro 7:2 KJV 2 Keep my commandments, and live; and my law as the apple of thine eye.
Jhn 14:15 KJV 15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
Jhn 15:10 KJV 10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.
Deu 5:29 KJV 29 O that there were such an heart in them, that they would fear me, and keep all my commandments always, that it might be well with them, and with their children for ever!
1Ki 3:14 KJV 14 And if thou wilt walk in my ways, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as thy father David did walk, then I will lengthen thy days.
1Ki 6:12 KJV 12 Concerning this house which thou art in building, if thou wilt walk in my statutes, and execute my judgments, and keep all my commandments to walk in them; then will I perform my word with thee, which I spake unto David thy father:
1Ki 11:38 KJV 38 And it shall be, if thou wilt hearken unto all that I command thee, and wilt walk in my ways, and do that is right in my sight, to keep my statutes and my commandments, as David my servant did; that I will be with thee, and build thee a sure house, as I built for David, and will give Israel unto thee.
1Ch 29:19 KJV 19 And give unto Solomon my son a perfect heart, to keep thy commandments, thy testimonies, and thy statutes, and to do all these things, and to build the palace, for the which I have made provision.
Psa 89:31 KJV 31 If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments;
Psa 119:115 KJV 115 Depart from me, ye evildoers: for I will keep the commandments of my God.Pro 7:1 KJV 1 My son, keep my words, and lay up my commandments with thee.
Dan 9:4 KJV 4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments;


Answers come from keeping the Lord's commandments. You have to learn them, practice them until they become a part of you (doer), then understanding comes from the harvest that they produce. Hence your answer in is doing right. When unsure of what to do, you head to the commandments, what does the word say? Obey it. The other part of this is the preacher, for you seek God and God tells your preacher. This is a protective measure for you. This mind and will is powerful, therefore if you do not check it against the anointed preached word, you'll follow your own willing without restraint, thinking you are following God. Its easier to obey the more you obey because of the understanding you receive, plus the freedom. As you begin to waken to this, falling in love with Jesus is easier as well, since by His commandments, you know Him. Then by knowing Him, you understand His will in a matter... Do good, keep His commandments.. He will direct your path...


Submitted by: Tina Marie
 

Friday, March 14, 2014

The Face of Physiogomy

Physiognomy (from the Gk. "physis" meaning 'nature' and "gnomon" meaning 'judge' or 'interpreter') is the assessment of a person's character or personality from their outer appearance, especially the face. The term physiognomy can also refer to the general appearance of a person, object or terrain, without reference to its implied characteristics.

Wow! You should SEE some of the looks I get while I am out running the roads. One would think the people driving by saw an alien from Mars. Cigarette burning in one hand, coffee or cell phone in another, (doughnut or doughnuts on the seat), and one knee being used to keep the vehicle straight, they zip past me during the early morning hours. Many look at me with a dis-contorted face. They either have a bad case of gas from the eggs, bacon, and their morning cups of coffee, or they can't seem to fathom why someone would be, of all things, running so early in the morning. As much as I try not to lunge into some evil surmising about the facial pictures that fly by me each morning, it is difficult at times not to break out in laughter. While running I can't help but postulate the irony of it all. Most drivers are stressed out, racing to and fro to their work place or trying to get their kids to school on time. Frantically milling along the hectic pace of life as they consume a barrage of garbage food which paradoxically continues their declining health and stress of life!

All of us have heard the saying..."Never judge a book by its cover", but it just seems to be human nature or at least one of the most used traits of the flesh to do so. As much as I am endeared to 'judge' what I see whip past me at fifty-five miles per hour, many drivers are also seem to be engaged in their own predisposed surmising of me. But there is, I am probably very safe to assume, there is a very big difference! The inescapable difference is this...I have been where the drivers are and its highly likely the drivers zipping past me have ever been where I am. Let's face it, most people don't exercise, let alone get up early for a morning run. The majority of people are content to remain in their learned habit of stuffing highly toxic foods down their throats first thing in the morning and then dash off into the sunrise for a stressful day on a job they hate, with a boss they despise.

While these drivers are urgently zipping to and fro each morning, its no wonder they seem shocked to see someone running so early in the morning. The many facial physiognomies I have had opportunity to witness is usually full of disbelief or, in some cases, even contempt. Most facial witnesses are filled with disbelief. You can see on their faces how they can't even imagine what its like to be running, you know, like outside of their climate controlled atmosphere of their easy rolling vehicle. Consumed by their path of least resistance lifestyle of no exercise, their morning hobble to get into their car was strenuous enough, let alone run along the shoulder of a road.

Over the years I have learned to remain very aware of my surroundings while running, especially if I am running along the shoulder of a road. Most drivers, while driving, are far too consumed with whats going on in their car than with what is going on outside their car. Whether they are playing with radio, talking on the phone, texting, eating their breakfast, lighting a smoke, or just plain rushing to get their child to school, most drivers do not have me, a runner, in their early morning radar. When I see a vehicle, up the road, heading toward me, I have learned to watch what transpires. Sometimes, the vehicle ahead will begin to veer over, which to me, means the driver has identified something is in the road up ahead. As a runner, I am relieved to 'see' this movement to give me room to run. Though I still move to the shoulder of the road, I am relieved, because it tells me the driver is 'aware' of his surroundings. Sadly though, most of the time, drivers seem content to play 'king of the road' and show little acknowledgment of my movement in their direction. When this happens, I never take my eyes off the advancing torpedo and move as far off the road as possible. I have to admit, there have been times where a vehicle's closeness to my body has caused some disconcerting emotions. When this happens, I am sure to spin and make sure the driver sees my frustration in their rear view mirror, that is, if they were even aware enough to look into it!

I guess physiognomy is a two way street! As much as I am able to observe the looks of humans in the metal container that whizzes past me in the early morning, they also get a snapshot of interesting material for their morning mental outlook. There are times when my facial expressions are not necessarily matching what I am truly experiencing. Case in point, one morning a friend of mine was zipping by in his motor vehicle and saw me on one of my morning runs. Usually, a quick horn blast will announce that someone who knows me just zipped by and I try to give a quick wave of acknowledgment. Such is what happened on this particular day, and I remember waving and feeling pretty good on a ten mile run that I was on. Later on during the day, my friend walked up to me, laughing about how bad I looked in my struggle to run. I was somewhat dismayed at his assessment of what he saw and how I felt. As he drove by, he saw a runner struggling, but while I was running as he drove by, I felt very good in my run. So, the point being made here is this...as much as I am able to 'judge' what I see blast by me in a car is a two way street. At that critical moment, two souls collide in a mental juggernaut of quickened conclusions of what is externally seen in a moments passing!

A well known woman's marathon runner, Joan Benoit Samuelson, said when she first started running, anytime she would see a car coming she run and hide. She was worried about how she looked and embarrassed to have someone 'see' her running the roads. I can also remember feeling the same way when I began running some ten years ago. But today...well...today is a different story and I am now thankful to say that people's physiognomy has little impact on my running. As a matter of fact, sometimes it empowers me to run on! The scripture tells the preacher to preach and to 'spare not for the looks'! Basically encouraging the preacher to not let the non-verbals that comes from people's faces affect the burden you have to bring forth the Word of God. So today, I give you the same encouragement to not let the non-verbal communication of those around you to squelch your attempts to better yourself. Get up! Get out! Don't let a momentary flash of discouraging looks stop you from achieving your eternal goals!

Submitted by: Elder David Green