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Last week was the shortest day of the year.  Already we see the days lengthening and changing, the weather attempting to be warm to lure us into the promise of spring.

Seasons change.  With new seasons of the year come new opportunities, experiences, weather patterns, habits, blessings and “hassles”.  Each winter I end up buying new winter gloves because invariably the ones from the year before have wandered off into who-knows-where land.  When the bite of a frost chills me to the core I always long for the sunshine of summer.  But I love winter for pumpkin soup and hearty roasts.  I love winter pjs and slippers, the roar of the fire and the coziness of a blanket.  In winter you can snow, in summer you can surf.  Summer speaks to me of ice cream and walking along the beach, and lazy afternoons with a book and sunglasses.

As with the seasons of the year, so life changes.  It has its own seasons.

There are seasons of growth and harvest.  Seasons of productivity and creation.  Seasons of depth and preparation.

What season are you in?

Every season has its opportunities, experiences, patterns, habits, blessings and “hassles”.

Here are 3 things I do to appreciate and maximize the season I am in: Read the rest of this entry »

Passionate people…

pursue God

worship

pray

take daring steps of faith

humble themselves

walk with people in life

learn

know their Word

are filled with the Holy Spirit

serve

lead

 

 

what would you add to the list?

Therapists and others who study human behaviour will tell you there’s only one difference between those who succeed and those who don’t. “It’s all about their habits,” they say. 

 

1. They reveal what you value least—and most.

2. They reveal where you spend your time.

3. They reveal the state of your mental health.

4. They reveal the state of your spiritual health.

5. They reveal the state of your physical health.

 

1. They reveal what you value least—and most.

Tell me your dreams and then show me your calendar.

Tell me what’s most important in your life and then show me how that is really actioned in your life.

A habit as simple as arriving late or constantly procrastinating can show what you rank at the bottom of your scale of priorities—and also what you rank at the top. What do you hold as important and unimportant in this life? Just take a look at your habits. They will speak for themselves—and most likely, they will speak to others as well.

If you have a habit of working hard, helping others or always being on time to work, it shows that you see a great deal of value in your future, your character and your work ethic. Likewise, if you are always late, interrupt times with friends because you always answer your phone or commit initially only to back out late, it will be clear to the people around you what comes first in your life—and what doesn’t.  It destroys credibility.  It empties the relational bank account and creates distrust.  Trust is such a great lubricant for promotion and opportunity – without trust the opportunities and promotions pass by us and restrict us to a lower level of adventure and experience.  Good habits foster good relationships and a healthy relational bank account.  They demonstrate personal integrity and capability and contribute to a proven track record of faithfulness.

Small things have a larger role in who we are and who we are becoming.  They create a big picture view of who we are.  We may consider some habits as inconsequential but they have an impact in creating credibility with people which in turn has an impact on where we are heading in life.  

Habits can hinder us, or they can be shining stars in the way we live our life publicly and privately.

“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.”  Jim Ryun

 

2. They reveal where you spend your time.

Habits don’t just happen overnight. If a habit takes 30 days to form, then those 30 days will tell you a lot about your commitments. Are you cutting down on your Starbucks habit so that you can read the Bible in the morning before work? Or are you routinely hitting snooze and falling off your exercise program 10 days in? We all have the same 24 hours in a day, and have to make choices about we’re using our time. We make trade-offs based on what we consider most important at the time—for better or for worse.

I myself have worked hard at creating a habit of getting up early and exercising.  This habit says that YES I do value my health, wellbeing and also the dreams I have that require me to be fit and able instead of sick and tired.  I have had to make significant choices that support my new habit and deal with the voices in my head that entice me to hit snooze.  But I value the progress I am making over another hour or so of sleep.  I trade sleep for long term gain.

 

“We become what we repeatedly do.” Sean Covey

“Sow a thought, and you reap an act;
Sow an act, and you reap a habit;
Sow a habit, and you reap a character;
Sow a character, and you reap a destiny.”
― Samuel Smiles

 

3. They reveal the state of your mental health.

Some habits are internal, more than external. They live in our thought processes, our attitudes and our outlook. And if these mental habits go unchecked, it can cause us to live in a state of mental compression because our habits are living our lives for us. But the truth is, mental health is the beginning of all habitual health problems. If a habit, such as envy, lust, comparison, discontent, takes root in your mind, that mental habit is eventually going to be given the reins to the rest of your health if not taken care of.

Creating a new habit is a mental challenge.  It requires will power and discipline.  It requires us to have a bigger YES in our lives that empowers us to say no. 

Steven Furtick says that our mind is like a factory.  We are the quantity managers the determine whether a thought, a product of that factory, meets the grade or needs to be rejected and taken off the production line before it gets delivered into the world.  Likewise our habits.  We can choose how we live our life.  We can chose our habits.  

We demolish argument s and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and
we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
—2 Corinthians 10:5

Becoming aware of our habits doesnt need to be limited to actions but also our emotions and the very way we think and process information.

In UNGLUGED, Lysa Terkeurst instructed participants (our mums group) to keep a reaction journal.  To document those moments when we came unglued and reacted to a situation in unpleasant ways.  This revealed our current status quo.  It intentionally caused us to become aware of what emotional habits we had and then was the springboard to choose new emotional habits, to create a new normal.

 

4. They reveal the state of your spiritual health.

Your habits play a massive role in your sinful nature. Our habits are shaped by either a self-disciplined will, or a powerful felt need—and the latter can often pull us into habitual sin. If you really think about it, most sin is derived from a habit that has been formed over an extensive period of time, and then exposes itself when that habit yearns to be activated. On the other hand, forming habits of prayer and worship can also create virtuous habits that can counteract the destructive pull toward sin. 

The choices we make and the habits we live either feed our flesh or feed our spirit.

 

If you are guided by the Spirit, you won’t obey your selfish desires. 17 The Spirit and your desires are enemies of each other. They are always fighting each other and keeping you from doing what you feel you should. 18 But if you obey the Spirit, the Law of Moses has no control over you. Galatians 5:16-18

Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires. Romans 13:14

 

5. They reveal the state of your physical health.

We’re a society of busy people—and there’s a multitude of fast food, drive-thru options just for our convenience.

Look at your food and exercise habits: do you make late-night chocolate runs, put off your gym membership renewal, lounge around playing video games all weekend? Or do you make it a point to work out three times a week, floss your teeth daily, fill your shopping basket with fresh veges? Your habits will tell you a thing or two about your physical health.  If you want to improve your health and wellbeing then change your habits.

It’s easy to go about our days as usual—with our habits and routines fixed in place without a thought. But if we do evaluate our default patterns, we might learn what we’re doing well and where we have room for improvement. And in 30 days, we might even be able to turn ourselves around and create new normals in our lifestyle.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.  Galatians 6:7-8

Sow healthy habits and reap health.  Sow a block of chocolate a day… and  yes.

 

“Watch your thoughts for they become words.
Watch your words for they become actions.
Watch your actions for they become habits.
Watch your habits for they become your character.
And watch your character for it becomes your destiny.
What we think, we become.
Margaret Thatcher

 

 

 

Ammended from an article (see link above), and inspired by RELEVANT MAGAZINE

 

SHOP (3)

 

Attitude can make a pivotal difference when facing down a giant.

David was the youngest – remember overlooked when the great prophet Samuel came to anoint the next king – at left at home AGAIN to look after the sheep. His brothers go off to war to become heroes and he has to stay home, like a kid. This could of made him feel insecure and insignificant – esp when his dad tells him to go take some lunch to his brothers. Menial. Not very life changing or significant.

But even when his brother insults him David maintains an attitude of self confidence – or perhaps more so confidence in who he is and who he is called to be. His brother’s words were intended to make him doubt and retreat but David was not affected.

He had a different perspective of WHO HE WAS – He was God’s.

He had an attitude of faith and an identity secured in what God said about him.

 

To overcome self doubt we need to get a clear and accurate picture of who God says we are.

BELOVED.
CALLED.
CHOSEN.
EMPOWERED.
ETERNITY CHANGERS.
MEN AND WOMEN OF DESTINY.

To step out and be the person we are called to be and to do the things we are called to be we need to be people of FAITH – having faith in GOD – it is HIM who works in us – I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH HIM WHO GIVES ME STRENGTH.

In order to overcome the giants we face we must have an understanding of what God says about who we are. Read the rest of this entry »

Sometimes we need to use worship to intentionally rewrite our attitude.

We talked about this last week with our Leading & Loving It ConnectLIVE group, how attitude can change the dynamics and destiny of a group, individual or situation.

 

 

Worship reinforces what matters most, reminds us of truths we forget and renews our desire to live what we believe. Rick Warren

 

 

This is a powerful declaration attitude adjustment song by BETHEL MUSIC on the new YOU MAKE ME BRAVE album.

The lyrics are full of faith, hope and peace – despite whatever the storm is around, despite whatever mountains are in our path.  It is in those moments we choose what attitude we will have.  It is in moments like that we agree with faith or flick over to freaking out.  Choose faith.   Let faith determine your attitude and declare IT IS WELL!

 

 

Grander earth has quaked before
Moved by the sound of His voice
Seas that are shaken and stirred
Can be calmed and broken for my regard

Chorus
Through it all, through it all
My eyes are on You
Through it all, through it all
It is well Read the rest of this entry »

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*** i’m passionate about teamwork, leadership and mentoring and that is one of the reasons i’m stoked to be on the SAS team this year @ The River – its about seeing lives change and people in real world situations having to work together, using their God given gifts, using their God given differences, for a common purpose.   Brad Lomenick’s post today was so timely, a beautiful reminder, at the beginning of this new adventure as we’re jumping into a lot of team building and practical team experience.  Teams work. 

 

Reality is, we are all part of some kind of team, wherever we are in life. Family, church, volunteer, sports, business, community, social. As Leaders, it’s equally important for us to know how to follow and be a great team member as it is how to LEAD and be a team leader. In fact, many believe to be a good leader, you must first be a great teammate. And I would suggest that great leaders are equally in tune with how best to be a teammate, along with how to lead well.

So here are a few thoughts on being a great team member:

1. Good teammates are great finishers. They get the job done. They take projects across the finish line.

2. Good teammates anticipate. They understand what needs to be done next before others, and are always looking for ways to make the process better.

3. Good teammates criticize their leader in private, and praise in public. Enough said on that.

4. Good teammates are trustworthy. When given an assignment, a leader can be assured that it will get done. This is incredibly important.

 

 

go read the next 4 great team attributes HERE on Brad Lomenick’s blog

 

 

and what would you add to the list?

**** church notes from Sunday 27th October AM service – Pastor Peter Morton @ The River 

 

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Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:5-11

 

 

Living with the attitude of Jesus:

Your attitude should be the same as Christ Jesus
Therefore God exalted Him

There is power in the name of Jesus

 

1 Peter 5:6 God lifts you up, humble ourselves

Phil 2:15 shine like stars

God’s heart is to bless you and lift us up

 

 

Five things
A attitude
A action
A agony
A ascends
A accolades

 

Attitude results in action that held Jesus through the agony so God ascended Him and gave Him accolades

Be faithful with the attitude and the actions even through the agony

Have the same attitude as Jesus
You make a decision to have an attitude
Attitudes determine destiny
We have a default attitude that programs our lives
Which is why it is important that we have the same attitude as Jesus

 

What is your default attitude?

A bad attitude will never take you to a good destination

Don’t feed a bad attitude, like stroking a cat

God begins with our attitudes

 

What was Jesus’ attitude towards God?
Surrender

What was Jesus’ attitude towards others?
Unconditional love

What was Jesus’ attitude about Himself?
V 5

 

What is inside will come out

Jesus made Himself nothing and took on the form of a servant

Empty yourself
Be a servant

Attitude first, actions second

 

1 you’re committed to giving away any power and accolades and good things and resources given to you
2 you’re committed to living out the plans of God

 

Live your life pouring out
Live your life advancing the kingdom of God

Matt 6:33 Jesus LIVED that

Agony
V5
Humbled Himself
Even to death

Often we find it hard when we have the right attitude and actions but instead of the ascent or accolades we get agony

The agony can make us question our attitude and action
Which sometimes is good but sometimes challenges the good attitude

Don’t let your agony change your attitude and actions but hold onto faith in God

Heb 12:2+
V 11

Teach believers with your life: by word, by demeanour, by love, by faith, by integrity. Stay at your post reading Scripture, giving counsel, teaching. And that special gift of ministry you were given when the leaders of the church laid hands on you and prayed—keep that dusted off and in use. Cultivate these things. Immerse yourself in them. The people will all see you mature right before their eyes! Keep a firm grasp on both your character and your teaching. Don’t be diverted. Just keep at it. Both you and those who hear you will experience salvation.  1 Timothy 4:11-16

 

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SPEAKER: Michelle Meeks – Leading With Your Life @ JustONE Virtual Conference at LEADING AND LOVING IT

 

demeanour – our attitude or our presence, how we behave ourselves

 

we should live our lives so that our attitude, our presence and our behaviour brings honour to God

 

Three clichés that if we actually put into practice would make a huge difference in our demeanour:

1. Be Yourself :

Lead the way you were created to lead.

you are unique and created by God – don’t mimic what other leaders are doing – it can lead to exhaustion to copy someone else, because you are created a certain way

our demeanour, our presence, our attitude creates a difference – the HOW we live our everyday lives in every moment makes a difference

illustration: michelle talked about how her daughter sings and how it brings her great joy, and how likewise when God looks at us it brings Him great joy when we do leading and do life in our way, not mimicking other people

 

 

 

2. Read your Bible and Pray :

Let God’s truth and his word fill you up so that when rattled His love spills out.

 

carve out that time – be intentional about making that time to spend with God

 

there is lots of pressure in leadership roles, in leading people and the relationships and burdens they share and the lives they are living

we can choose to: crumble under that pressure, to hide away, to have a negative demeanour

we can choose to: mask it, to pretend everything is fine, even though inside we are broken

we can choose to: allow God to heal our hearts and get to the source of our demeanour and redeem it so it is God honouring

 

lets be women who allow God’s truth and His Word to fill us up, so that when the pressure is on, love spills out.

when we’re not spending this time with God our more sinful and uncontrolled demeanour spills out and creates more brokenness

 

3. Choose Friends Wisely :
You are an average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.

 

we need to ask ourselves if our friendships are building us up or tearing us down
we need to fill or TIME with the right relationships and that people are speaking LIFE into us, who see the good potential and destiny

 

Who is pouring life into you?

And are you pouring life into others?

 

 

loved this session:  such practical keys for making a difference in our lives and leading well.  our WHOLE life should be lived from the overflow of our relationship with God and living out His love and grace and reality.  God calls us to be US.  mould yourself on God’s Word and His heart for you.  Be secure in His love and His calling.  and where do you find that security and fortitude live your life with generosity and adventure?  His Word. 

 

i love this quote by Lysa TerKeurst – which is my facebook status today:  When we know our identity before we jump into activity, we don’t have to guess how to handle the vicious lies of the enemy. Because in God we are loved, accepted, and whole. Oh, may this statement straight from God be inscribed, engraved, and tattooed in the most permanent of ways on our hearts: “Well pleased … well pleased … well pleased.”

 

when we know our identity in Christ, secure in  His love, we jump into the activity designed for us, not into someone else’s shoes or style.  and when the lies of the enemy comes to rob us of the joy of living our own life and knowing Jesus, when the lies come to say “you’re not good enough, why don’t you be more like x y z, you’re not very good at that” we can have the counter that comes from having the heart of God and HIS Word to us inscribed, engraved, and tattooed in the most permanent of ways on our hearts: “Well pleased … well pleased … well pleased.”

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But Jonah was greatly displeased and became angry. He prayed to the Lord, “O Lord, is this not what I said when I was still at home? That is why I was so quick to flee to Tarshish. I knew that you are a gracious and compassionate God, slow to anger and abounding in love, a God who relents from sending calamity. Now, O Lord, take away my life, for it is better for me to die than to live.”  But the Lord replied, “Have you any right to be angry?”  Jonah 4:1-4

 

did jonah not remember what had happened less than a week ago?

the running from God thing?

the storm?

the whale?

the forgiveness?

the grace?

the mercy?

the second chance?

 

 

why was jonah angry?

was it because he had preached that the city would be overthrown (with no BUT if you repent message in there) and the city was saved instead?

was it because he looked like a false prophet and his reputation was tarnished?

was it because God didnt act like he thought he would?

was it because he had unrealised expectations?

was it because it was a gentile city not a jewish city?

was it because they were israel’s enemy and jonah wanted them to be judged and not spared?

 

was it because his understanding of who God is, His character and His priorities was inaccurate?

 

whatever the reason, jonah is sporting a huge ugly ‘tude!

 

God asks him a few times “do you have a right to be angry?”

God is dealing with this angry preachers heart.

God is teaching Jonah.

God is transforming Jonah.

God is revealing Himself to Jonah.

God is changing Jonah’s heart.

 

Jewish tradition says that after God said the words of Jonah 4:11, Jonah then fell on his face and said: “Govern your world according to the measure of mercy, as it is said, To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness.” (Daniel 9:9) We can only hope that Jonah – and we – would have such a humble response.  Enduring Word

 

to be in ministry we must esteem God’s will and His ways above our own.

how often do we lean more on the “teaching them a lesson” over loving them and extending grace.

you know, to “them”.  those rebellious people.  who need a slap not a hug.

there are times to extend tough love, yes.  but other times i think our human nature translates what God is wanting to do incorrectly.

i pray that i would have my heart changed to be more like God’s, slow to anger, rich in love and that i would see people as He sees them.

that my ministry would be an opportunity for God to move, not an obstacle to His presence.

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The attitude you have while in the wilderness determines how long you stay there. ~ Joyce Meyer

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