Archive for the ‘Doing Life’ Category

July 12th, 2009

Restraint

“All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” James 3:7-8 (NIV)

Doing life requires restraint. There are countless temptations used of Satan to entice us to compromise our Christianity. His goal is to get us to drift from our devotion to God. One of Satan’s favorite tools is an unbridled tongue. He knows that our words can do more damage than our actions alone.

Have you ever said something you deeply regretted? Have you had one of those moments when you spoke before you had time to really think through and process what you were going to say? Ouch! It is impossible to retrieve words once spoken. If only we could snatch them out of the air before they made contact with the tympanic membrane of someone’s ear. If you have ever allowed words to slip and wound someone, then embrace this great word from God on how to respond.  

“If you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth, then do this, my son, to free yourself, since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands: Go and humble yourself; press your plea with your neighbor!” Prov 6:2-3 (NIV)

Has God placed someone on your heart that you have wounded with your words? Are you willing to go to them in humility in order to apologize and ask for their forgiveness? God will honor your obedience to His word. God will make a way for you to experience restoration. Restoration is God’s specialty! Don’t delay. Make things right!  

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
(This devotional was originally posted in ’07 or ’08. I’m taking a break from writing for a season of personal renewal.)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, July 12th, 2009 at 8:04 am
Category Doing Life, Life, Restraint.
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December 31st, 2007

Doing Life (5)

Doing life involves anticipating the Lord’s return.

“Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.” James 5:7-8 (NIV)

In our society of instant coffee, microwavable breakfast, and fast food, we don’t wait well. We want what we want right now. When it comes to the return of Christ, patience is required.

Jesus came to the earth, lived, died a sacrificial death, rose from the dead, and ascended to the Father in heaven. Jesus is coming again. In His second coming, Jesus will come like a thief in the night.

We tend to get so comfortable in this life that we forget about the reality of the Lord’s return. Just as a farmer waits patiently for the rain and the fruition of his crops, we are to wait patiently for the Lord’s return. That means to live in anticipation of the visible return of the Lord. We are to stand firm by obeying God’s Word with the expectation of the soon coming of Christ.

Could Jesus come back today? Are you ready for His return? Turn your eyes upon the Lord and anticipate His return.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, December 31st, 2007 at 1:00 am
Category Doing Life, Life.
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December 30th, 2007

Doing Life (4)

“Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” James 4:7 (NIV)

Doing life involves submission and opposition readiness. God is at work and the devil is at work. Anytime you choose to join God in His activity, Satan will oppose. You can walk in victory by submitting to God. Submission is a conscious choice to surrender your agenda to God’s agenda. Moment by moment surrender allows God to have His way in your life. Your usefulness to God will be proportionate to your willful submission to God.

It is not enough to submit to God’s agenda; you must also resist the devil. Opposition readiness is not optional for the follower of Christ. If you are going to reign victorious in this life, you must consciously resist the lure of the enemy. Satan is the master of disguise. He seeks to get you to drift into his path and to get you to neglect your devotion to God.

Will you submit to God? Will you resist the devil?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, December 30th, 2007 at 1:00 am
Category Doing Life, Life.
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December 29th, 2007

Doing Life (3)

“All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.” James 3:7-8 (NIV)

Doing life requires restraint. There are countless temptations used of Satan to entice us to compromise our Christianity. His goal is to get us to drift from our devotion to God. One of Satan’s favorite tools is an unbridled tongue. He knows that our words can do more damage than our actions alone.

Have you ever said something you deeply regretted? Have you had one of those moments when you spoke before you had time to really think through and process what you were going to say? Ouch! It is impossible to retrieve words once spoken. If only we could snatch them out of the air before they made contact with the tympanic membrane of someone’s ear. If you have ever allowed words to slip and wound someone, then embrace this great word from God on how to respond.  

“If you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth, then do this, my son, to free yourself, since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands: Go and humble yourself; press your plea with your neighbor!” Prov 6:2-3 (NIV)

Has God placed someone on your heart that you have wounded with your words? Are you willing to go to them in humility in order to apologize and ask for their forgiveness? God will honor your obedience to His word. God will make a way for you to experience restoration. Restoration is God’s specialty! Don’t delay. Make things right!  

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, December 29th, 2007 at 1:00 am
Category Doing Life, Life, Restraint.
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December 28th, 2007

Doing Life (2)

“Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did.” James 2:21-22 (NIV)

Doing life requires faith. As a follower of Jesus Christ, you are in the minority on this planet. You are doing life on the narrow path in the midst of a fallen world. Your beliefs will be challenged. Living the Christian life will be marked by opposition and resistance. However, your faith in Christ and His provision will be authenticated by your actions.

Are you putting feet to your faith? Are you allowing your faith to hit the pavement of real life in the real world? Abraham serves as a wonderful example of trusting in God’s provision no matter the cost. He was willing to sacrifice his only son in order to be obedient to God. As you know, God came to the rescue in the fourth quarter with a few seconds left on the clock. God provided the substitute. Why did God allow Abraham to go through such a trying experience? God was testing Abraham’s faith.

Do you fully trust God to do what He says He will do? Do you fully trust God to empower you to do life His way during your short stay upon the earth? God wants to reveal His glory in you and through you as you live out your faith. Allow your faith to be expressed to a watching world by your actions. As you are doing life, your faith will either attract others to Christ or distract them from Christ. Will your actions give evidence to your vibrant faith in God?  

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Friday, December 28th, 2007 at 1:00 am
Category Doing Life, Trust.
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December 27th, 2007

Doing Life (1)

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4 (NIV)

My dad has had a life of trials. His parents were alcoholics and a few years into his marriage to my mom, he became an alcoholic. My mom and dad divorced when I was about seven. My dad spent most of his adult life in and out of prison and combating the ferocious enemy, alcohol. The last few years have been tranquil as he has aged.

Today, I took him to visit the nursing home he has picked out for his next place of residence in less than seven days. I met with the administrator and signed the paperwork. It’s hard to believe that at age thirty-eight, I would be helping my dad prepare for this type of transition. I think it has been a day of facing this trial and allowing God to test our faith and develop perseverance.

Walking with God for the past twenty-eight years, I have learned that God is serious about spiritual maturity. God uses all kinds of situations and circumstances in our lives to bring us into maturity. He does not want us to lack anything. God also allows us to experience trials in order to reveal His heart of compassion. God cares about you and everything you go through.

Doing life requires trusting in God’s provision. Doing life in a fallen world creates opportunities for us to experience joy in the midst of adversity. God’s character does not shift. He is the Rock. Consider your circumstances and then consider it pure joy. God is up to something special in your life.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care  

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, December 27th, 2007 at 1:00 am
Category Doing Life, Faith, Perseverance, Trials.
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