Monday Kfirst Kickstart: Leveling Your Soul #Playlist

Today I want to give you a place to start your week. It’s Monday, and sometimes in the wake of a great weekend and long workweek ahead, you just need a “kickstart” to get focused.  So grab some coffee let’s start a great week together. 

Loved the day we at Kfirst yesterday. We continued our series “Playlist“as we looked at Psalm 131 (Read Psalm 131) as we put our focus on the pride we all deal with. It’s never an easy thing to deal with. That why Charles Spurgeon said of Psalm 131, 

 “It is one of the shortest Psalms to read, but one of the longest to learn.”

I’ll admit, yesterday’s message was working hard on me up till the service and has been pounding on my heart since.  I’ve been asking the Holy Spirit to give me greater revelation of the areas of my life where I am letting pride in. I mean, let’s all admit: Pride is a struggle for all of us. And, like carbon monoxide, it’s been a silent killer that goes undetected. It’s for that reason we said, 

Your pride will want to wrestle your vision aways from you to distract what Christ wants to do in you and through you. This natural and gradual inclination has no desire to co-exist with a move of God in your life. It wants to destroy anything God has built. That’s why we take pride seriously. 

The Psalmist did. And his answer for leveling his soul when pride wanted to throw him off was to be in the presence of God “like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me.” So this week, would you take a couple Next Steps from Psalm 131?

  1. Spend time in the presence of God. Be in His presence just to seek His face without worrying about asking anything of Him. Listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit. Find a time to worship the Lord on your own. Get into the Word of God. If you need a reading plan to start, use this link from our youversion sermon notes
  2. Practice the AAA.
    • Admission. 
      • Ask the Holy Spirit to help you see where pride has crept in.
    • Accountability. 
      • Who is a trusted person in your life you can confess pride to and who will help you overcome pride?
    • Actively pursuing humility. 
      • Two of the greatest ways to pursue humility: 
        • Worship. I know some who can worship without music. If you need some, here’s one of my favorite playlists right now: River Valley Worship
        • Serving. When you get beyond your pride and serve others, you both cultivate the character of Jesus and show the world who He is. 

Love you all.  See you on Sunday. 

BTW: Here’s a song to put on your #Playlist this week: 

2-Minute Devo: Day 9 of Our 40-Day Journey #Undone40

Thanks for joining us on our 40-day journey of prayer. We’re asking you to get your journals out and do 3 things:

  1. Read.
    • Read the Psalm of the day. Enjoy the 2-minute devo.
  2. Reflect.
    • Journal a few thoughts.  Put into words what the Holy Spirit is speaking to you.
  3. Respond.
    • Spend time in prayer.  Respond to what God is speaking to you through his Spirit and his word.

“Everything that a person can possibly feel, experience, and say is brought into expression before God in the Psalms.” Eugene Peterson

Today’s reading: Psalm 119:65-72

You have done many good things for me, Lord,
    just as you promised.
66 I believe in your commands;
    now teach me good judgment and knowledge.
67 I used to wander off until you disciplined me;
    but now I closely follow your word.
68 You are good and do only good;
    teach me your decrees.
69 Arrogant people smear me with lies,
    but in truth I obey your commandments with all my heart.
70 Their hearts are dull and stupid,
    but I delight in your instructions.
71 My suffering was good for me,
    for it taught me to pay attention to your decrees.
72 Your instructions are more valuable to me
    than millions in gold and silver.

Marriage Blog: Leave the Money on the Nightstand

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Having a few weeks off of blogging, my heart has been burning to blog on a subject that has crumbled and continues to eat away at so many marriage. Paul addresses it in the famous “love chapter”:

Love “does not demand its own way.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

This cancerous element has no place in your life.  It has no place in your marriage. It will weaken you and your spouse to the point where you will be unable to stand together.

It’s called selfishness.

Yet every time we act out of it…
…every time we think with it…
…we use and abuse our spouse in order to get our own way.

We, by doing it, empower our spouse to say, “Leave the money on the nightstand.”

money nightstand 1

I understand that it’s an intense metaphor.  But I cannot think of anything more graphic, and yet aptly descriptive, of what selfishness does to your spouse.  The phrase “Leave the Money on the Nightstand” is known as a reply of a prostitute to a “client”.  It is the tired, broken reply of someone who has been so used for selfish gain.  It is the rehearsed line spoken to people who have “demanded their own way” with very little care and minimal emotional investment.  My fear is that selfish people are positioning their spouses to feel no different from a harlot: simply there for you to get what you want and leave them void.

I’m tired of it.  I’m so stinking weary of grown adults playing the childhood game of “mine” with the person they should be serving most.  I’m so sick of marriages falling apart because grown men and women don’t know how to think of anyone else but themselves.  Every day, people act out a scenario of selfish ambition trying to grab all they can thinking “if I don’t, someone else is going to be better than me.”  We take and take until we’ve depleted the resource (marriage) without the thought of pouring in (unless it’s to our benefit).  It’s like the zombie apocalypse is about to hit and they’re taking all that they can because they don’t know if they are going to get anything later.  To deepen the issue, we seed that mentality in our children by displaying the selfishness in front of them as well as refusing to raise them with the mentality of serving first.  Instead, we raise them to “take first” as to make sure that no one else’s child gets ahead of our kids.

Love “does not demand its own way.” 1 Corinthians 13:5

The original language literally means “does not seek the things of itself.” Self-focus, which is the antithesis of love, marked the Corinthian church and, sadly, it marks too many marriages.  The way to correct “self-seeking” is, quite simply Christ-seeking.  To see Him and discover Him is to discover the totality that is love. And THAT is the remedy for selfishness: Love.

Jesus said,

“’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second [commandment] is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’” (Mark 12:30-31).

As we find our completeness in Him, it gives us the ability to love and serve those around us.  Jesus, in Mark 12, was teaching that concern for others must equal the natural concern we have for ourselves…

…and the word “others” should not just include our spouse but place them first above all human relationships.

Does our spouse see that?  Can they tell that they are the priority in our lives? We have to be willing to step off the pedestal we’ve built to be seen and raise up the importance of serving our spouse.

Our spouses should never feel used.  Our spouses should never feel void.  We have to guard our wives/husbands from be “marital harlots” for us to take what we want and go about our day.

Lay aside your pride.  Lay aside what YOU want.

It’s time for you to be a spouse who will raise up the concern to serve HIGHER than the level to receive.

Thanks for letting me ramble…

 

 

2 Minute Marriage Devo – Day 12

Welcome to our 2 Minute Devos. This month we are in our Annual Marriage Series at Kalamazoo First Assembly of God and we’re going through devotions for couples. Take the time to read through the passage of the day and listen to the 2 Minute Devo.

Proverbs 21:2

Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the heart.

2 Minute Devo: “Key ingredient to repentance” 1 Cor. 8:1-13

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October is our journey through the 2 minute series called “Resurrecting Repentance”.  It’s as simple as viewing the vlog and reading the passage for the day.  Today’s passage is 1 Corinthians 8:1-13:

1 Corinthians 8:1-13

Now concerning[a] food offered to idols: we know that “all of us possess knowledge.” This “knowledge” puffs up, but love builds up. If anyone imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know. But if anyone loves God, he is known by God.[b]

Therefore, as to the eating of food offered to idols, we know that “an idol has no real existence,” and that “there is no God but one.” For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth—as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”— yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.

However, not all possess this knowledge. But some, through former association with idols, eat food as really offered to an idol, and their conscience, being weak, is defiled. Food will not commend us to God. We are no worse off if we do not eat, and no better off if we do. But take care that this right of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak.10 For if anyone sees you who have knowledge eating[c] in an idol’s temple, will he not be encouraged,[d] if his conscience is weak, to eat food offered to idols? 11 And so by your knowledge this weak person is destroyed, the brother for whom Christ died. 12 Thus, sinning against your brothers[e] and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ.13 Therefore, if food makes my brother stumble, I will never eat meat, lest I make my brother stumble.

2 Minute Devo: “A confessing mouth” 1 John 1:8-10

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August is our journey through the 2 minute series called “Watch Your Mouth”.  I want to invite you to join me as we. It’s as simple as viewing  the vlog and reading the passage for the day.  Today’s passage is 1 John 1:8-10:

1 John 1:8-10

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.