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Godly Friendships

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We have been talking about Friendships – Godly friendships – this is under our value Stand. We want to line our lives up with the way God does things – His order of things so we can stand rightly how He intended us too. Proverbs 17:17 A friend loves at all times is our main verse – the things we have been learning is how that love plays out.

Influence:

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Mark 9:42 But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were thrown into the sea.

Whoever uses their influence and causes another to stumble is accountable for that.

We are accountable for being a good example.

We want to walk the walk and talk the talk like Jesus did.

HOW :   

An INFLUENCER leads change. They change first then stand firm as an example.
An INFLUENCER replaces bad behaviors with powerful new skills. They overcome their weaknesses and learn how to do things differently in a positive and loving way.
An INFLUENCER makes things happen. They start movements and with small changes cause major shifts in the atmosphere around them.

Honesty:

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In Act 5:1-11 Ananias and Sapphira – lied to the Holy Spirit and Died.

Honesty is a huge part of accountability – you can not be a person who is honored as one who is accountable without honesty.

HOW:

Be Honest with GOD – In Titus 1 it tells us that God cannot lie. So He can be trusted always.

Be Honest with Yourself – John 8:32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free. Never lie to yourself .

Be Honest with Others – Colossians 3:9-10 Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.

Honesty in these three areas will cause you to grow and mature. One who can be trusted to be accountable. The truth hurts but it doesn’t kill. A lie pleases but it never heals.

Accountability:

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Accountability means to be answerable to or responsible

Examples: I answer to Pastor Lynn, Children to parents, Team leader over team, and Boss over employee, ME to GOD.

We are ALL accountable to someone and we are all accountable to GOD.

How do we know this?

Do you know what having a conscience means?

People usually use that term when they encounter something that goes against the value system, when we are faced with things we know are sin. Having a conscience means we have this internal right and wrong system (an accountability system) that God build right into us. God said in Heb 8:10 He would write His laws on our hearts. Then in Rom. 2:15 They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them.

WE KNOW when we are doing wrong.

When we choose to be accountable we decide to have a willing heart to obey and submit to God. We have to choice . WHY? We have free will. We get to choose. What we will or will not do? To sin or not to sin. The issue with this is when we ignore that internal red flag system we have and do what we know is wrong we slowly deaden our hearts to God. God has order in this world He created. When we choose to be out of order it is like putting an engine together in the wrong order –just throw it together however I feel like it and go calling it good…it wont work and I get now where.

Same things happens to me when I am out of order. It becomes hard to live, deal with people and I get all stressed out and I live with a heavy heart and most likely I am angry or depressed. Life sucks for me.

God gave us This system so we would know that He is just and we are not. So we would know that we need a Savior and would call on Jesus and He would make us JUST through His Son. JUST -Righteous

Now Satan knows you are a powerful person, with position, and purpose. Satan loves to hijack this internal accounting system in two ways. Distracting us from what Christ did on the cross, the Grace He gave us. He does this to Either to get you so focused on your sin that you start to believe that God would never love or want you. So you turn away from GOD. Or he gets you so focused on your good deeds and your “not sinning” that you begin to feel like you have some great moral accomplishment. Get all prideful and God turns away from you. He doesn’t leave you He just turns.

Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated you from your God;And your sins have hidden His face from you,
So that He will not hear.

Ever lie to someone and get caught and they turn their face from you and don’t want to hear what you have to say anymore.

When we are in God’s order and living accountable – we become powerful, purposeful, people with position.

Accountability is important because accountability means that we choose to be responsible people who are honest and we influence our world through being like Jesus.

We choose to do good because to not do good is sin. God gave us a group of people He called the Body of Christ – all the people who know and have accepted Him as their savior. He gave us a purpose Heb 10:24-25 tells us that we are too stir each other up to good works ( influence each other for good) and encourage each other. True Friendships have accountability laced in them.

Keeping a pure heart with in through this pathway of grace keeps us on the road of accountability. It’s the same pathway within friendships.

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HOW:

James 5:16 Pray for each other – Confess our sins so we can be healed.

Gal 6:1-2 When we see each other falling into sin and going back to old bad habits to gently correct each other in love. Use Honesty and compassion to speak truth – call each other back to remember who you belong too and who loves you.

Accountability is about community. Living and Loving together. Doing life together Gods way.

Lots of people love to say – Its none of your business! And while that is true to some extant. Within certain relationships that is not possible. Its always Pastor Lynns business what we do here at youth group. It’s always my husband’s business what is going on with me. It is always Parents business what is going on with their kids.  Whenever you choose Gods order for your life – something amazing happens. He runs in to bless you because you honor His way of doing things. Thankfulness will always bloom in the garden of accountability.

Where do you stand in accountability ?

 

PHOTOS FROM #5hrFest – 5 hours of Fun, Food, Message on Accountability

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Vulnerable

Matt. 5: 14-16 (msg)

Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.

By opening up to others”….

Sounds a lot like being vulnerable to me!

To Open Up means : To speak freely or to be without restraint

It is not easy to open up – we all have our fears, worries, anxiety, and apprehension when it comes to speaking freely.

We wonder – if we speak – will we be judged?

Will I look stupid?

Will someone reject me?

but…..we all know to be real is important!

To be honest is important!

To be who we are and live what we are is important!

and when we don’t ….WE LACK LIFE! (really living!)

So we have this GRAND ISSUE!

I have this grand issue….

To be or not to be …..YOUR CHOICE/MY CHOICE

Do you ever hear yourself in your head like I do, when I have said what I think …..the swirl of emotions bending my mind to panic over what another might have thought or I choose to think myself into anger with a spur kick of “ Well, If they don’t like it -tough!!!”  just so that I can get over it. (can anyone say repression?)

BUT…. it is the same if I don’t ! If I say nothing I feel invisible…without form …and frankly isolated. My mind condemning my for cowardice and my heart seeing it failure to find courage to be real.

This verse is helpful ….a clear and true reminder of why I need to speak openly about what I think and feel and be who I am ….because it simply says:

By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God

God created me to be a communicative being and to communicate with Him and others. IN this communication when I am open and honest with others….the realness shining through me somehow allows others to be that way to!

AMAZING!

It is truth that sets us free …after all!

STAND IN THE FACE OF FEAR …

ONE VULNERABLE MOMENT AT A TIME ….

His grace is sufficient!

STARLA

Come and Join us today!!

Today over at Friendships of Love  we are talking about ” when we hide who we are and our feelings” 

I wrote a post called STUFF AND SMILE

Proverbs 27:7 When you’ve stuffed yourself, you refuse dessert; when you’re starved, you could eat a horse.

 The word STUFF means to stop or cram, choke back. In an emotional sense this is when we don’t tell how we feel. We don’t rebuke when we should. We don’t communicate our hearts and minds. We are STUFFED. It says here when you stuff yourself you also refuse dessert. We often think of dessert as a sweet at the end of our meal but the original meaning comes from the root words Dis-serve and means TO CLEAR THE TABLE.  If you are STUFFING your emotions then you also are refusing dessert (clearing the table) you are not allowing……To continue reading click here:   http://friendshipsoflove.blogspot.com/2010/09/stuff-and-smile.html

Tina wrote a poem concerning the same issues, a telling and revealing poem of a heart hidden.

http://friendshipsoflove.blogspot.com/2010/09/revealing-of-concealing.html

Thanks for joining us today as F of L

Have a great day

Starla

The things we do…

Thursday (Book I'm Reading) THOUGHTS

Reading: Days of Deepening Friendship by Vinita Hampton Wright 

Her site and to buy this book : http://deepeningfriendship.loyolapress.com/

Hello I am Back…doing my Thursday Thoughts….I find it really interesting that the chapter I am choosing to do is RIGHT WHERE I AM!! I havent read ahead in this book I am just going along…I took a break and laid the book down and during that break I have been thinking about the very things Vinita addresses in this chapter.. God is good at that if we are listening…so lets get right to it shall we?? :0)

Chapter 19 : How do you get in your own way?

The first sentence or I should say clip of a sentence that stood out to me when reading this chapter is  –  Simple Self-Respect – When you break it down it really is SIMPLE…but we complicate things –don’t we??  (What If I say to so and so that they are walking on me they may stop talking to me all together ) We’re did we get the idea that keeping people who don’t care about us is a good thing???!!! Its simple – respect yourself. You are of worth!!

Vinita says we have to learn to understand what hurts us and what helps us. Something as simple as make up can make a big difference to two people as Vinita tells us. To one make up may give them too much attention and it becomes a hinderance to their being, giving off the appearance of too confident or too flashy whatever the issue this person may be seen as someone to not take seriously. To another no make up may let them hide like blending into the wallpaper and they don’t get to share their gifts or they simply get ignored.

Vinita asks the question : What hurts your progress in life? Our attitudes and beliefs held since childhood really do have to have their stinky little fingers pried from the steering wheel of life. I use to be scared to death to tell the truth in an emotional situation. One childhood experience caused me to be afraid to speak the truth when some one was emotionally charged. I was always in fear that if I told the truth it would come right back and smack me in the face. I would be wrong no matter what. This belief caused me to hide and give over my self-respect and integrity for years. I simple was afraid to stand up for myself and speak MY TRUTH….I have learned that what I KNOW is all I KNOW and that TRUTH is the only way to go!! ~ until I KNOW different. These things that are hanging on us keep us STUCK…in the Muck of FEARing to be real…with others and God…and ourself.

Vinita goes on to talk about hanging around people who are not good for you…do you know who those people are in your life?? OH I KNOW we are Christians we aren’t suppose to judge or be UNLOVING!! RIGHT??!! We take it for granted that God gave us DISCERNMENT. We know when someone is not right for us, for where we are, for were they are….WE CANT FIX PEOPLE! God can!! We will help no one if we can not control ourselves around certain people. You know what I am talking about — the person who makes you feel like you are wrong about everything and so you agree with them (even if it is just a tiny bit with your silence)…or the person who you just can’t stay out of the gossip corner with…or the person who comes around and they lay all this garbage in your mind and you always feel terrible and drained  after they leave…or the person who disrespects your time and you waste a whole week cause they think they live at your house. DONT FEEL GUILTY and tell yourself that you aren’t good enough, strong enough, or loving enough Christian…repent and stand with your DISCERNMENT of these things. Give yourself permission to respect yourself. YOU are one person you can DO SOMETHING about –so DO IT! You KNOW in your KNOWER if someone is NOT FOR YOU!! If they are dragging your down you cant help or do them good and they aren’t doing you good…they need the person who can help them up and so do you.

Taking inventory of the things that harm us and help us is a good thing to do …novel idea anyway…so I will give it a whirl —

Things that harm me :

My ability to blame others for my attitude problem, My need to have things in my kitchen right and so if it is not I get pissy, My ability to whisk myself away when I am hurt causing me to ignore issues and prolonging the situation. My need to deal with it NOW while not allowing others to process their way ( wow those two are opposites )  So naturally next should be my ability to swing from one extreme to the other making me feel Bi-polar.

Things that are helpful:

Being willing to see the reality of the situation in front of me no matter how painful or upsetting, Being willing to speak the truth that is in me so that I do not stuff and smile and turn into a volcano, Being kind to myself within my mind and heart, Resting when my body asks me too instead of pushing myself.

Can you make your own list? Do you know what is good for you and what is not…and who is not?

Have a great THURSDAY!! Blessings

Starla