Web Inspirations

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Resisting Discouragement
by Rick Warren

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So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time. Galatians 6:9 (NLT)

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There are many things that work to keep us from completing our life-missions. Over the years, I’ve debated whether the worst enemy is procrastination or discouragement. If Satan can’t get us to put off our life missions, then he’ll try to get us to quit altogether.

The apostle Paul teaches that we need to resist discouragement: “So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t get discouraged and give up …” (Galatians 6:9 NLT).

Do you ever get tired of doing what’s right? I think we all do. Sometimes it seems easier to do the wrong thing than the right thing.

When we’re discouraged, we become ineffective. When we’re discouraged, we work against our own faith.

When I’m discouraged, I’m saying, “It can’t be done.” That’s the exact opposite of saying, “I know God can do it because he said ….”

Ask yourself these questions:

· How do I handle failure?

· When things don’t go my way, do I get grumpy?

· When things don’t go my way, do I get frustrated?

· When things don’t go my way, do I start complaining?

· Do I finish what I start?

· How would I rate on persistence?

If you’re discouraged, don’t give up without a fight. Nothing worthwhile ever happens without endurance and energy.

When an artist starts to create a sculpture, he has to keep chipping away. He doesn’t hit the chisel with the hammer once, and suddenly all the excess stone falls away revealing a beautiful masterpiece. He keeps hitting it and hitting it, chipping away at the stone.

And that’s true of life, too: Nothing really worthwhile ever comes easy in life. You keep hitting it and going after it, and little-by-little your life becomes a masterpiece of God’s grace.

The fact is, great people are really just ordinary people with an extraordinary amount of determination. Great people don’t know how to quit.

Jun 27, 2008

Real Liberation

I had a remarkable conversation with a woman about physical limitations. Nancy was a sufferer of M.S. She could no longer walk and spent her waking hours in a wheelchair.

"I'm not 'confined' to the wheelchair," she insisted one day. "It doesn't confine me. It sets me free."

I had never thought of it that way. And I have never referred to someone in a wheelchair since as being "confined."

She asked me, "Do you want to know my reason for living?" It seemed like an abrupt change of subject, but I went with it.

"What is it?"

"To liberate people. To set them free."

She must have studied my face and figured I needed more help. "It's like me...before I got my wheelchair, I had trouble getting around," she explained. "Now I can go places. But other people may be trapped in different ways. So however I can free people, I want to do it."

"People speak of being 'shut in,'" she continued. "People who have difficulty leaving a room or a house or a bed are not 'shut in.' They're 'shut out' -- shut out of activities and shut out of people's lives. So I try to help people find some freedom, however I can."

I wonder how she'd handle my limitations, though. I can get around all right, but I hold myself back by my thinking. I say, "We'll never do that!" or "I just don't believe that is possible" and later find that somebody proved me wrong. It's my beliefs and attitudes that cause some of my biggest problems. They are as limiting to me as Nancy's
disease is to her.

"Almost everybody walks around with a vast burden of imaginary limitations inside his head," says author J. H. Brennan. "While the burden remains, personal success is as difficult to achieve as the conquest of Everest with a sack of rocks tied to your back."

It IS a burden, isn't it? Like a sack of rocks. Some people carry the burden that they will never be able to pursue a passion or achieve a cherished dream. And some tote around the idea that other people can experience good things of life, or simply be happy, but they never will. Our thinking itself can be as much a burden as climbing a mountain with a sack of rocks tied to our backs.

When I feel "confined" by my thinking, I sometimes ponder these words from Darwin P. Kingsley, past president of New York Life Insurance Company:

"You have powers you never dreamed of. You can do things you never thought you could do. There are no limitations in what you can do except the limitations of your own mind."

Now THAT sets me free! Free to live. Free to risk. Free to move forward. Free to be...me.

It's real liberation.

-- Steve Goodier

1. You shall not worry, for worry is the most unproductive of all human activities.

2. You shall not be fearful, for most of the things we fear never come to pass.

3. You shall not carry grudges, for they are the heaviest of all life's burdens.

4. You shall face each problem as it comes. You can only handle one at a time anyway.

5. You shall not take problems to bed with you, for they make very poor bedfellows.

6. You shall not borrow other people's problems. They can better care for them than you.

7. You shall not try to relive yesterday for good or ill, it is forever gone. Concentrate on what is happening in your life and be happy now.

8. You shall be a good listener, for only when you listen do you hear ideas different from your own.

9. You shall not become bogged down by frustration, for 90% of it is rooted in self-pity and will only interfere with positive action.

10. You shall count your blessings, never overlooking the small ones, for a lot of small blessings add up to a big one.

~ Author Unknown

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