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War and Peace?

war and peace

A few weeks back I wrote about how Madison Avenue is playing off of Paul Revere’s famous ride (Start Spreading the News?). This got me thinking about Madison Avenue more broadly and the overall purpose of marketing.

The main objective of any marketing, of course, is to convince us to buy their products. And one of the main methods advertisers employ is to try to convince us we are not good enough, we don’t have enough, and we aren’t significant enough.

The basic message is we deserve whatever they are selling and we will be happier if we buy their products. The result is an internal battle between what we need and what we want; between what we can afford and what we spend; between being content with what we have and constantly seeking more.

This is also the main strategy of Satan – to convince us we aren’t good enough, we don’t have enough and we aren’t significant enough. Satan’s main purpose is to deceive us into a lack of peace so we will buy what he is selling: Lust of the eyes (possessions), lust of the flesh (pleasure) and the pride of life (power).

Satan wants us to be at war with ourselves; a war between what is right and what is wrong; a war between selfishness and selflessness; a war between peace and discontentment.

So what exactly is peace? According to Webster’s the definition is: “Freedom from disquieting thoughts or emotions; harmony in personal relations; in a state of concord or tranquility.”

What is the source of peace? According to the Bible: John 14:26-27 “But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

How do we attain peace? Here is a something I recently read that is so good: “True peace comes as a gift from God to those who seek his will alone for their lives. It comes to those who give their lives in service to others, who are honest and humble, who care and trust. It comes to those who forgive.”

How do we know if we have peace? I believe there are three traits of person at peace.

  1. A thankful heart. Ephesians 5:20: “Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.”  If we are thankful then we won’t be searching for what we don’t have.
  2. A lack of anxiousness. Philippians 4:6-7: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, 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.”  By trusting Him we are given supernatural peace.
  3. Reaction to trials. James 1:2–4: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” We trust Him because we know there is a greater purpose to our trials.

 Lastly, if you are not at peace I would challenge you in three ways:

1.     Are you spending enough time in prayer, in the word and in community?

2.     Do you really believe that God only wants the best for your life? In other words do you trust Him?

3.     Are you loving people by being selfless (humble), by serving, and by sharing the Good News?

Philippians 4:8–9: “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

In His Service,

Ed

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2013 in God's Peace

 

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Start Spreading the News?

Paul RevereI have been writing about how the Bible instructs us to love people. I wrote about loving others as Jesus did by being humble – by putting other people and their needs ahead of our own needs: Humble Pie?  Then I wrote that we are to love people by using our gifts to serve: Football Dynasty?

How else are we to love people?

Some of you may have noticed that Paul Revere is in vogue on Madison Avenue in NY, NY – at least two companies are playing off of his famous ride. In one ad an insurance company uses the line “Happier than Paul Revere with a cell phone.” In the other ad a car company modifies his famous line to “The Italians are coming.”

Not sure why Mr. Revere is so popular at the moment but it caused me to think about his famous ride and his warning that “the British are coming.” I did a little research and found some interesting facts:

  1. Revere did not shout the phrase attributed to him “The British are coming!”, but rather “The Regulars are coming out.” ***
  2. The “alarm and muster” system that was developed to warn the colonists was so effective that within an hour people in towns 25 miles from Boston were aware of the British army’s movements.
  3. The message was ultimately delivered by not just Paul Revere but by over 40 riders.

What does Paul Revere have to do with loving people? Getting the message out and spreading the news to the colonists was critically important to saving the lives of thousands of people.

Another Paul had a critical message to get out as well – a message that has saved more than 2 billion lives: 

“They arranged to meet Paul on a certain day, and came in even larger numbers to the place where he was staying. He witnessed to them from morning till evening, explaining about the kingdom of God, and from the Law of Moses and from the Prophets he tried to persuade them about Jesus. Some were convinced by what he said, but others would not believe.” (Acts 28:23, 24 NIV)

Paul was acting on the last command Jesus gave before ascending into Heaven. Acts 1:8 “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

Paul Revere had thousands of lives to save. The message of Jesus communicated through Paul and countless others has saved billions.  You may not have that many people counting on you but there may be 1 or 10 or 100 people depending on you to share the message of Jesus’ salvation.

How are we to love people? We are to love people by sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ with them. While it is not our responsibility to save it is our responsibility to share. While we don’t know who will believe and who will not believe just as Paul experienced, we do know Jesus was clear on our assignment.

Who is your person? Who is counting on you to start spreading the news?

In His Service,

Ed

 *** Paul Revere’s mission depended on secrecy.  Since the countryside was filled with British army patrols shouting “the British are coming” would not have been the best approach. In addition, most of the Massachusetts colonists (who were predominantly English in ethnic origin) still considered themselves British. Revere’s warning, according to eyewitness accounts of the ride, was “the Regulars are coming out.”

 
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Posted by on August 29, 2013 in Community

 

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Humble Pie?

humble pie

I have been writing about how the Bible can be summarized in Matthew 22:36-40 as love God; love people. I covered the love God part in: Love Rules?, Love Hurts?, and Less is More?

So what about the second part – how are we to love people?

Before being crucified, Jesus gave His last commandment to his disciples in John 13:34-35: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

So if we are to love people as Jesus loved how did He love? What is the model of love? Sure Jesus took care of needs, He provided, He taught, He heeled, but most of all He loved by being humble: Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 18, 2013 in God's Love

 

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Savior and Lord?

sin

With Christmas three weeks away our attention to turns to the birth of our Savior. Last year I wrote a series on my favorite Christmas movies and shows (here is the link to one: http://wp.me/p1QSbw-53) – this year I want to write about something that has been on my mind a lot over the last few weeks.

Have you ever noticed we want the benefits of things in our lives but not the cost? For example we want the protection of the police but not the speed trap part. We want the paycheck and benefits from our employers but not the boss’ mandates. We want to be in shape but not the exercise part. Our children want their allowance but not the chores part. The list goes on and on. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2012 in God's Peace, Prayer

 

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Our Will Be Done?

prayerNorth Point Community Church is currently in the middle of a great series (Red Letters Prayers) on prayer.  In the 1st part Any Stanley provides the best explanation of prayer I have heard – you can listen / watch it here: http://www.northpoint.org/messages/red-letter-prayers. This series really got me thinking about prayer Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2012 in Prayer

 

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How the Grinch Stole Christmas?

Last week I wrote about my favorite movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” (https://d2dministries.com/2011/12/02/its-a-wonderful-life/) and how George Bailey had a changed outlook because he had a changed perspective.  Well Christmas is less 3 weeks away and you still have a few opportunities to watch my favorite animated Christmas show “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” The Grinch is great story about Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 8, 2011 in God's Peace

 

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Crystal Ball?

Dear Friends and Family,

 With the start of school right around the corner my thoughts turn to where Alli will go to college in the fall of 2012. Having been through the college selection process twice (for myself and for Derrick) I am reminded that while we plan, desire, and hope for the future God often has other plans.

 For me I dreamed of going to Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 25, 2011 in God's Plans

 

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