Daily Archives: October 2, 2012
Read: Philippians 4:10-20
Contentment is hard to attain. Even the apostle Paul, a hero of the faith, had to learn to be content (Phil. 4:11). It was not a natural character trait for him.
For Paul to write that he was content in every situation is truly amazing. At the time of this writing, he was in jail in Rome. Charged with sedition, treason, and other serious crimes, he had appealed to the highest court: Caesar himself. Without other legal recourse and friends in high places, he had to wait for his case to be heard. It seems as if Paul had the right to be an impatient and unhappy person. Instead, he wrote to the Philippians to say that he had learned to be content.
How did he learn this? One step at a time until he could be satisfied even in uncomfortable environments. He learned to accept whatever came his way (v.12) and to receive with thanks whatever help fellow Christians could give (vv.14-18). And most important, he recognized that God was supplying all he needed (v.19).
Contentment is not natural for any of us. The competitive spirit in us drives us to compare, to complain, and to covet. Few of us are in a predicament such as Paul’s, but we all face difficulties in which we can learn to trust God and be content.
Content with what You give to me.
No, more than that, let me rejoice
In all You send, for it’s Your choice! —Anon.
by Joyce Meyer – posted October 02, 2012
The Bible says that we will reap what we sow. The dividing line between success and failure is doing what God tells us to do. We pray for fruit in our lives, but we don’t always want to pray for roots.
If we want our days to go right, we need to do whatever God tells us to do. If we don’t walk in obedience, then we can’t complain if we wind up in a mess. If we are lonely and God tells us to invite somebody over, but we decide it is too much trouble, then we will stay lonely.
Obedience brings the fruit of the Spirit in your life. Dig deep into God’s Word before you walk away from blessings today.
From the book Starting Your Day Right by Joyce Meyer. Copyright © 2003 by Joyce Meyer. Published by FaithWords. All rights reserved.
For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you… – 2 Timothy 1:6, NIV.
I believe that God has planted seeds of greatness on the inside of every one of us. We all have dreams and desires, things we want to accomplish; things we want to see changed. But so many times, life has a way of stealing our dreams. We go through disappointments, face adversity, things don’t turn out as we would like. Too often, people just end up settling for second best. But God doesn’t want us to settle for second best. He wants us to be determined, press on, and pursue the greatness that’s on the inside. We should never let “good enough” be good enough!
I want to encourage you today to stir yourself up and get your fire back. Start speaking victory over your future. If one dream has died, dream another dream. Put yourself in a positive, faith-filled environment. Get around people of excellence who live passionately. Fan the flame that is in you so you can move forward into all God has in store for you!
Prayer for Today:
Father, I come to You today giving You my disappointments, setbacks, hurts and broken dreams. I ask that You restore my passion and vision for the future. Let Your flame burn brightly in me now and forevermore in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Copyright © 2012 Joel Osteen Ministries
Everyone has defining moments in their lives; experiences that shape who we are and our perspective on the world. We can have defining moments in our relationships, in our careers, and with God.
All throughout our lives, God draws us to Himself in various ways. He chose us long before we ever chose Him, and He is constantly calling us to His heart. In defining moments with God, He reveals Himself to us and empowers us to live the life of victory He has planned.
I’ve had many defining moments in my life when I knew God was speaking directly to my heart. I remember one evening back when I was in college. I was studying with a friend at her kitchen table when I overheard a conversation between her mother and her aunt on the other side of the room. They were discussing the Bible, and as they talked about a particular passage of scripture, it stood out so strongly to me that it was like they were shouting across the room, even though they weren’t.
“Did you hear that?” I enthusiastically asked my friend.
“Hear what?” she said, looking up from her notes. “What are you talking about, Victoria? I didn’t hear a thing.”
“You didn’t hear that scripture about how God wants us to really understand His love and be passionate about it?” I was amazed that she hadn’t noticed the conversation across the room.
She shook her head and looked back to her notes. Meanwhile, I sat there in awe. Those words were so clear; I felt that God was speaking directly to me in a very special way. Those words came alive in my heart in a way I hadn’t experienced before. It was a defining moment in my life when I knew God was drawing me to Himself.
Right now, I believe God is drawing you to Himself in a special way, too. You can probably look back over your life and see His defining moments speaking to your heart. Meditate on those times. Ask the Lord to reveal Himself in a fresh, new way. Look for His hand guiding and directing you and allow Him to reveal His love and goodness to you!
“He reveals deep and secret things…” (Daniel 2:22, NKJV)
Copyright © 2012 Joel Osteen Ministries
Processed foods are popular because they’re convenient, even though we all know junk food is bad for us. Families with children are particularly susceptible to the lure of processed foods because they are so pressed for time. But while they’re fine on occasion, the easy, cheap calories in processed foods are damaging our health and it’s best to avoid them whenever possible. Here’s a look at the very worst offenders.
SODA – Regular sodas are loaded with sugar and, with little to no nutritional value, should only be consumed very infrequently. But what’s surprising is that diet soda drinkers are actually more likely to develop metabolic syndrome and in some studies appear more likely to gain weight. While the causes aren’t clear, one thing we know for certain is that there’s nothing wrong with an old-fashioned glass of water, which keeps the body hydrated, and promotes better digestion, and protects tissue and organs.
MARGARINE – Think of stick margarine as a big block of trans fat — hydrogenated oil helps liquid oils to be solid at room temperature, and is a key ingredient in margarine. Trans fat adversely affects both good and bad cholesterol, not to mention increasing triglycerides, lipoprotein, and inflammation. For buttery goodness, go with the real thing, or opt for a flavorful olive oil.
POTATO CHIPS – Nobody thinks potato chips are good for you, but according to a very broad study of obesity published in the New England Journal of Medicine, no single food contributed more to obesity than potato chips. It may seem strange that a food that’s not a sweet would top the list, but potato chips are a food that people just naturally overeat.
FRENCH FRIES – A small serving of french fries has about 275 calories and nearly 15 grams of fat, but the real issue is the nearly 4 grams of trans fat in a single serving. For a healthier option, try simple roast potatoes or homemade oven fries.
BLENDED COFFEE DRINKS – A grande vanilla frappuccino from Starbucks without whipped cream has 300 calories. The same amount of black coffee has five calories. Better to get your caffeine fix without getting your sweets fix. But if you must feed your sweet tooth, you would actually get less calories from drinking a cup of coffee and eating some fudge.
MICROWAVE POPCORN – Popcorn is often touted as a healthy snack option, but beware since lots of name-brand microwave popcorn is actually full of trans fat —one brand has 5 grams of trans fat per serving (even more than margarine). Microwave popcorn can also be packed with sodium. Don’t skip the popcorn all together, but consider buying a plain variety and adding your own flavors, or reading the label very carefully before you buy.
Make healthier popcorn
HOT DOGS – This one hurts because hot dogs are a personal favorite. But even if you can put what parts of the animal are actually in them out of your mind, one hot dog still has 20 percent of your daily recommended intake of sodium and is loaded with saturated fat to boot.
For a healthier alternative, try veggie dogs
PROCESSED CHEESE DIP – Two tablespoons of Cheez Whiz have 90 calories. That compares favorably with something like mayonnaise, but whereas two tablespoons of mayo is more than enough, the amount of Cheez Whiz you eat with something like nachos is a lot more than two tablespoons. It’s also loaded with fat and sodium.
Try these 7 ways to add veggies to your mac and cheese
GROCERY STORE COOKIES – Sugary and loaded with fat, these high-calorie cookies aren’t completely awful for you if you stick to the serving size. Three cookies come in around 160 calories (or over 50 calories each) with about 8 grams of fat. But the thing is, are you really only going to eat three chocolate chip cookies?
For a healthier alternative with whole grains and fruit, try oatmeal cranberry cookies
DOUGHNUTS – I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that these aren’t very good for you. A single glazed donut has about 260 calories and 14 grams of fat, including 30 percent of your daily allowance of saturated fat. Though many kinds are now free of them, donuts frequently contain trans fats too.
Try whole wheat banana muffins for a healthier breakfast choice
BACON – Look, I don’t want to diss a fave, but bacon is a processed meat that’s loaded with fat, saturated fat, and sodium. Just 2 strips of bacon have 12 percent of your DV sodium! Most bacon also contains nitrates and other preservatives.
For a healthier take on bacon, try green salad with pears, bacon, and homemade buttermilk dressing
FROZEN DINNERS – Not all frozen dinners are created equal, and the processed food industry is rife with “health washing.” Keep in mind that many brands serve up salty, fatty dishes, and “healthier” options may have questionable additives and ingredients, or compensate for a loss of other flavors with loads of sodium.
Shop smart: what to look for in a healthy frozen meal
GIANT FAST FOOD HAMBURGERS – Hamburgers are getting bigger and bigger, but here we’ll stick with the modestly enormous BK Double Whopper which has 990 calories, 2.5 grams trans fat, 195 milligrams cholesterol, and 1,520 milligrams sodium. Yum?
Make it healthier: 11 healthy twists on junk food classics
BOLOGNA – Just 2 slices of bologna have over 600mg of sodium which is over 20 percent of the recommended daily value. Even worse is that bologna is most often marketed to kids. Steer clear of this salty, preservative-filled mystery meat.
Try roast turkey instead
NON DAIRY CREAMER – Made with partially hydrogenated oil, most non-dairy creamers contain trans fat. The label will tell you otherwise, but only because the serving size is miniscule — 1 teaspoon. I’d need at least 10 teaspoons for my morning coffee! Stick to alternative milks like soy and nut if you can’t have dairy.
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