Jerry Kramer is a former professional football player, author, and sports commentator, but best remembered for his 11-year NFL career with the Green Bay Packers as an offensive lineman. Kramer was an all-pro five times, and a member of the NFL’s 50th anniversary team in 1969, (all of this from Wikipedia).
Before his election into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2018 at age 82, Kramer was noted for being a finalist for the Hall of Fame ten times without actually being voted in. And in 2008, he was rated No. 1 in NFL Network’s Top 10 list of players not in the Hall. Kramer was finally inducted into the Hall of Fame on August 4, 2018. At his induction speech, he quoted something his high school coach had told him: “You can if you will”.
Today’s message is on Mark 12:31: “The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
We were moving the weekend in August 2017 from Houston (actually Missouri City, right outside of Houston) to Louisiana when Hurricane Harvey hit causing so much devastation and destruction. We barely made it out of the storm, we had packed our Uhaul and I followed behind my husband, and literally 20 minutes after we passed an area of the interstate they closed it. We would have been stuck there. It was scary, as the water was at a dangerous level for our car.
I remember the news reporting so many stories of people coming from all over the US to help……I love that! Because there is a lot of negative news and sometimes it can be really heavy.
Today’s message is on 1 Peter 5:7: “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”
Yesterday we shared Job 12:13 and as we learned that Job hung on to God’s strength, and God’s understanding and not on his own. I was thinking about people who are struggling with anxiety. It seems to be so prevalent with people that I coach and mentor. Because let’s face it, many times when we are going through things we think we can handle it until the stress or the overwhelm begins to affect us emotionally, mentally, or even physically. And many times the stress or trauma causes us to have anxiety. Continue reading “Shifting my perspective on stressful situations”
We won’t always understand why we’re going through trials and in today’s verse we know this was the case for Job, who faced unexplainable and massive suffering and loss. Many of us have gone through incredibly hard times and can relate to his pain. Yet despite the many questions that Job had, in chapter 12 he declares that God is mighty and in verse 14 and 16 “What he tears down cannot be rebuilt” and “to him belong strength and insight”. Even further down in verse 23 it says, “He makes nations great, and destroys them”. And even reading this sometimes it can feel so heavy right? And as I read through all of these things that it says God allows, Job doesn’t mention God’s motives or why He sometimes will allow pain and suffering.
Today’s message is on Psalm 55:16: As for me, I call to God, and the Lord saves me.”
In Psalm 55, David shares how he pursued hope. Backing up a bit in this Chapter to the beginning verse 1 through verse 5, Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea; hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger. My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen on me. Fear and trembling have beset me; horror has overwhelmed me. Reading this, we can understand the weight of his burdens even though we may not know the specifics of the situations he faced.
Can you relate to how David describes his pain and how he felt? In our own life, like David, we may want to run from our problems or our painful circumstances looking for security or safety from the pain. I have shared here in these messages that something that I would do was run from my problems. Because many times, I didn’t want to feel the pain or deal with it. So I would either run or get myself so busy in life, I didn’t have to make decisions. Of course this is only a delay tactic, because sooner or later, it does catch up with you. I think of David in the scripture, and after considering his options he chose to run to his God instead of running from his problems.
John 8:7: When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”
Jesus was teaching in the temple courts when He made this statement. A group of teachers of the law and Pharisees had just dragged a woman caught in adultery before Him and challenged, “In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” (verse 5). Because they considered Jesus a threat to their authority, the question was “a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him” (verse 6)—and getting rid of Him.
1 Chronicles 28:20: David also said to Solomon his son, “Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.
As David prepared to hand his throne over to his son Solomon, he explained the burden would be heavy on his shoulders, and I think how Solomon must have felt being faced with all of the responsibilities. Overseeing building the temple, and leading Israel to follow God’s instructions and guarding the land God entrusted them to. Knowing his fear, David offered his son the powerful words in today’s verse. Sharing that being courageous because the Lord is with him.
Today’s verse reminds us to love others like we love ourselves. We are naturally built to love ourselves like when we are sick, we take care of ourselves, we get the rest that we need, we do our best to look after our eating and exercise. Generally speaking many of us do our best to care for ourselves, and if here in today’s verse, it gives us a clear example of a command given in the book of Matthews where Jesus said, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”
Today’s message is on Philippians 4:6-7: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
We have studied verse 6 before, but today’s message is about connecting to that peace that God offers, that as today’s verse says transcends all understanding. Yesterday we talked about joy, and choosing joy even if you don’t feel like it. And sometimes when life has given us every reason to be stressed or feel sad, we can lean on this verse today.
We all have reasons in our life to be grumpy: upsetting news, not feeling well, financial stress and other everyday stresses, really lots about our life can give us a reason to be grumpy. I love today’s verse because it reminds us that God can give us a joy that transcends the things we go through the conditions if we ask Him. We can have what Jesus called, “my joy”. And joy is a fruit of the Spirit of Jesus (Galatians 5:22).