Saturday, September 17, 2011

Running Behind Ramblings

I had so many plans for today. I was going to finish up my Spiritual Gifts and Isaiah lessons. I needed to be at the bank before noon and then wanted to go to the church and get my white board ready for tomorrow morning's lesson and also was going to work on some CrossRoads Homeschool Co-Op stuff and then be back home in time to fix dinner for my husband before he left for the night shift and then planned to head on over to hear my in-laws awesome bluegrass band pick up a storm.

I had been working on my Isaiah lesson and came in the house at my first stopping point and realized that I was running way behind when I saw that it was already after 12:30pm. I didn't make it out of the house until 7pm to shoot down to hear some bluegrass and then back home by 8pm to get the girls a goodnight snack, a bath, and into bed.

Tomorrow night I will teach the last lesson in a combined 23 week Precept Upon Precept  class on the book of Isaiah (I highly recommend this study. It is very relevant to the state of today's American church.). This last lesson will be on Isaiah 64-66. For some reason it has taken me all day to plan this last one hour lesson. I have no clue why.

This lesson completely consumed this Saturday. This after having spent hours through the week pouring over these chapters, they are indeed heavy chapters.

I love teaching the Word of God. It is an honor that I do not take lightly, whether I am teaching a room full of pre-schoolers or a Precept class filled with adult men and women who have been following the Lord much longer than me.

Hear the word of the LORD,
you who tremble at His word:
Isaiah 66:5

I tremble with the responsibility of accurately handling this Word of Truth. I quake in my gut and break out in cold sweats and stuttered speech. I teach in fear and awe of my God and pray that as I stand up there that He is glorified. I do love teaching the Word, but it is truly terrifing to me...

I believe that I can honestly say that at least once a week I tell God that I am done. I tell Him that I cannot do this anymore. I tell Him that I think He's got the wrong girl. I have even gone so far as to put together my "I quit" speech to deliver to our minister of education... but God just will not have it. For some reason He thinks He's boss and I am supposed to do what He says in spite of what I think I want... hmmmm imagine that.

But if I say, “I will not remember Him
Or speak anymore in His name,”
Then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire
Shut up in my bones;
And I am weary of holding it in,
And I cannot endure it.
Jeremiah 20:9

You see the thing is I couldn't quit. Because when I try to be silent, like Jeremiah my heart sets aflame and my chest tightens and my teeth clench and Scripture verses flood my mind until finally they spill out of the mouth that I was trying so hard to keep shut tight. I just can't help myself.

So today as I struggled through this lesson prep the "I quit" speech came to mind. Then the tears came as I looked at the joy that was set before me... finishing the race. Fighting the good fight. Accomplishing the mission of completing this in depth study of the prophet most quoted by my Savior. Knowing that God has just placed an arsenal in my mind that the Holy Spirit will use to defeat, deflect, and destroy lies for years to come. 

It was not easy. 
It was indeed work.
It required much effort and time. 
It required the sacrifice of other things in order to accomplish.

However, it was eternally worth it.  

Now as I complete Isaiah, I continue with the Precept Upon Precept study on spiritual gifts... and as I studied this week in Romans 12:1-8 and 1 Peter 4:7-11, I know even more strongly why the "I quit" speech will never be delivered.

My gift is teaching. This is my spiritual act of worship. For me not to teach is not to worship God and it is not to serve Him or His body. This is what the Holy Spirit has chosen for me.
I didn't pick it. It is God's choice, not mine. God's will, not mine. I must employ what He has gifted me with that I might be a good steward of His grace. To not teach is to throw my God's grace back in His face.
So I teach. I teach with fear and trembling at His Word and I pray that it is only the utterances of God that come forth from my mouth so that Christ might be glorified.

The lesson finally was planned, though nothing else got accomplished as planned, and I sit here now typing, when I need to be sweeping the dog hair up out of the floor and tucking my girls in the bed and debating on whether or not I am going to click the "publish now" button for this post or just add it to my list of drafts... and yes desiring to go over the lessons for tomorrow one more time.  

But I am going to bed and will trust God to work in and through me tomorrow and the next day and the next and the next for it is not by might, nor by power, but by His Spirit sayeth the Lord.  

Friday, September 16, 2011

Weight of a Woman

Women and weight... ugh the never ending battle... my grandmother is in her late 70's and still as a woman I don't think I have ever spent an entire day with her that losing weight doesn't come up in the conversation.

When do we stop looking in the mirror and measuring ourselves according to our waste line?
When do I stop staring at my reflection in the mirror and sighing over this flesh?

I actually hadn't worried about the weight factor much here lately... I've had too many other things on my plate that just required the priority of my thoughts. But now with several of my facebook friends posting about their zumba classes and their workout shakes and their weight loss goals... and not to mention our beach trip at the end of the month... well now I look at myself in the mirror critically once again.

The truth is I am a yo-yo girl.

I have at least three different sizes of clothing in my closet at all times because I never know what size I am going to be. I fluctuate in weight. One month I am up and then the next month I am down... At the moment I am coasting on the - between the yo's and by the handful of gut I just managed to grab off of my midsection it would appear my yo is on the way up not down. 

So now the thoughts of starting back on that exercise commitment is coming back to the forefront of my mind. I am one of those weird solo only workout girls. I don't want others watching me while I workout. I don't want a fan club or an accountability weigh in partner. Even when I had the opportunity to go to the gym I would stick the earphones in and get'er done and head home. 

There are two things in my life that I thoroughly enjoy most alone... my time with God and my workouts (when I actually did workout). I have also always reserved my mornings for both. My workout time usually coincided with my time with God because prayer just seems to come automatically with pushing ourselves physically.

Life got crazy a year ago and the workout time was flung out the window...
Since then I have survived on coffee not endorphins.

I know that I feel better when I exercise. I feel better about myself and I just feel better period. But knowing this and remembering this does not help in the actuality of getting up and doing it. Then I end up in this vicious cycle of feeling bad because I am not exercising and then depressed because I cannot manage to muster the internal push to do something about it.  

WebMD has this to say about the link between exercise and depression:

"Want to learn more about exercise and depression? Many studies indicate that people who exercise regularly benefit with a positive boost in mood and lower rates of depression.

What Are the Psychological Benefits of Exercise With Depression?

Improved self-esteem is a key psychological benefit of regular physical activity. When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins. These endorphins interact with the receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain.
Endorphins also trigger a positive feeling in the body, similar to that of morphine. For example, the feeling that follows a run or workout is often described as "euphoric." That feeling, known as a "runner's high," can be accompanied by a positive and energizing outlook on life.
Endorphins act as analgesics, which means they diminish the perception of pain. They also act as sedatives. They are manufactured in your brain, spinal cord, and many other parts of your body and are released in response to brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. The neuron receptors endorphins bind to are the same ones that bind some pain medicines. However, unlike with morphine, the activation of these receptors by the body's endorphins does not lead to addiction or dependence.
Regular exercise has been proven to help:
  • Reduce stress
  • Ward off anxiety and feelings of depression
  • Boost self-esteem
  • Improve sleep
Exercise also has these added health benefits:
  • It strengthens your heart.
  • It increases energy levels.
  • It lowers blood pressure.
  • It improves muscle tone and strength.
  • It strengthens and builds bones.
  • It helps reduce body fat.
  • It makes you look fit and healthy.
So there is a wonderful, sensible, list composed by health professionals of some of the benefits of regular exercise and thus here's my wonderful sensible list of excuses as to why I have not took part in exercise for a year...

* I will have to put on exercise clothes, plus later my regular clothes, which means double the laundry and I already can't keep up  
* I will have to take a shower, I could do the messy bun and get by today without a shower if I don't get all hot and sweaty from working out
* I will have to get up earlier than I already do
* I won't have time for my whole pot of coffee if I spend time exercising
* I have hardwood floors and they just simply are not comfortable for floor exercises and besides, ick, the dog hair
* I had rather have the extra time to study my Bible
* Hmmmm no, today I had rather sleep the extra time
* I might wake the family up and then I wouldn't have my quiet time with God
* What's the point anyway, this flesh is just going to whither away
* I am just too tired
* I don't live any where near a gym and really isn't that money better budgeted somewhere else and if I can't go to the gym why start anything else
* My "fat jeans" still fit... so I'm good
* Hey it's summer, I can just wear loose sundresses and flip flops that way my rolls won't show
* Hey it's spring/fall wind pants and jeans and t-shirts, woo-hoo, that way my rolls won't show
* Hey it's winter, layers, layers, layers, that way my rolls won't show
* I don't feel bad from lack of exercise, but from lack of sleep... therefore hit "snooze"

Ugh... yes just a few of my list of excuses.

So the weight of a woman is always heavy on her mind... whether we like it or not.

I am trying hard with the ears of my girls always perking up to listen to try and not complain about my body... this body that God gave me. I do not want them to hear me complain about things I cannot change. Like my height, my freckles, my chubby cheeks, my short waste, my large calves and my birthin' hips. Bones are bones, this is how God knit me in my mother's womb and He said I was fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139). 

I remember having my self-worth plummeted by snide comments made about parts of my body. Being poked in the stomach and called "pudge" being laughed at and told that "boys don't like freckles on a girls legs" and being told that I had a "man's back" and "birthing hips". Crazy comments made by people who probably thought they were being funny at the time. These are comments that were made over 15 years ago yet still remembered today. However, they no longer have power over me.

How thankful I am that God placed a man in my life to be my husband that has never made a comment about my body that I can recall in a negative light. He has never openly compared my body to another woman's body. So in all honesty I do desire to maintain the standard that he seems to enjoy to the best of my ability. I suppose that's one of the biggest reasons why the exercise issue is on my mind again...

That and I am tired of feeling tired and I want my family to have a healthy wife and mother spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically.

And yes, most definitely the fact that FB is throwing it up in my face daily has something to do with it as well.

So maybe it is time to put away the excuses and just get busy... hmmm maybe that shall be my Fall resolution. As the trees turn over a new leaf maybe I should as well.

This is a post from John Piper's blog:

In the previous post I mentioned what I do for excercise. Now is the why.
Disclaimer: I doubt that I ever had a motive so pure it had no sin in it. So you are welcome to fault any of this as tinged with vanity. What I can see, I have confessed. What I can’t, the Lord will bring to light sooner or later.
I just don’t like being overweight. My pants fit funny. I can’t see my belt. When I was about 19 I went golfing with some overweight evangelists. They said, “Well look at that flat stomach on Johnny. Just give him another ten years.” At that moment something happened inside me. I said nothing out loud, but inside I said, “It’s not going to happen.” I suspect there was sin in that. But the resolve is still there.
Quickly, another disclaimer: There is a difference between obesity and gluttony. I was set straight on this one after I made some hurtful blunders. Some people are overweight who have issues very different from gluttony. Never assume that overweight equals lazy and undisciplined.

For Purity and Productivity

Today, my main motive for exercise is purity and productivity. By purity I mean being a more loving person (as Jesus said, “love your neighbor,” Matthew 22:39). By productivity I mean getting a lot done (as Paul said, “abounding in the work of the Lord,” 1 Corinthians 15:58).
Underneath most of my besetting sins is despondency. I am less prone to such melancholy when I hammer my body three times a week. The reason could be endorphins. Could be ego. Whichever, it’s cheaper than Prozac or psychotherapy. I’m simply happier. And I sleep better. I have more energy.
Most of that energy goes into the Bible and preaching and people. And the fruit from that is, I hope, edification. Which means I exercise to be a more loving person and a better pastor.

How the Spirit Produces Fruit

If you ask how the fruit of exercise relates to the fruit of the Spirit, my answer is this: The Holy Spirit produces his fruit both directly and indirectly. He can zap you in your worst moments and make you kind. But he often does it indirectly.
For example, if you are impatient when you get little sleep, and if patience is a fruit of the Spirit (which it is, Galatians 5:22), very likely the Holy Spirit will not only remind you of the sufferings of Christ and the glory of God’s promises, but he will also give you the humility to stop being God and to bed at 9:30.
And if you sleep better when you regularly exercise, then the Holy Spirit will also give you the humble discipline to exercise so that you sleep better so that you are more patient. If he does it that way, it is still his fruit.
I could add that doctors say being fit will help protect me from a hundred diseases and bad effects of aging. I suspect that’s true. But if that were my main motive, I probably wouldn’t drink Diet Coke.
So, in short, I have one life to live for Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:15). I don’t want to waste it. My approach is not mainly to lengthen it, but to maximize purity and productivity now. I want to show as much gospel truth and publish as much gospel truth as I can. I have found, for 43 years, that exercise helps. I think God set it up that way.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Art of Friendship

According to the New American Webster Handy College Dictionary, art is the application of knowledge or skill, it is works designed to give intellectual pleasure (as music, sculpture) and pictorial representation, it is a skillful workmanship.

After having spent the last few weeks pondering this thing called "friendship" I have learned that it is indeed an art. Friendship is cultivated as a sculpture, chiseled out of a hard heart, and formed into a beautiful representation of fellowship. It is indeed a song that soothes the most frazzled mind and calms the most restless soul. It is not shallow or simple but it is built up from a sharing of knowledge and love and hopes and dreams and struggles and fears. True friendship is no doubt a workmanship of God's design.

Then the LORD God said,
“It is not good for the man to be alone;
I will make him a helper suitable for him.”
Genesis 2:18

True friendship is a covenant not unlike that of a marriage. The first friendship was between man and God, the second between man and wife, the third between brothers and sisters... our friends in Christ are our family. 

 For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven,
he is My brother and sister and mother.
Matthew 12:50

When I first thought of Biblical friendship my mind immediately went to Jonathan and David. I grabbed my Bible and turned to 1 Samuel 18 to read their story.

Now it came about
when he had finished speaking to Saul,
that the soul of Jonathan
was knit to the soul of David,
and Jonathan loved him as himself.
1 Samuel 18:1

I thought, "Wow... this is friendship... it is soul-knitting."
When I read this verse in 1 Samuel 18 there was a cross reference listed so I followed it to read,

"or your friend who is as your own soul"
Deuteronomy 13:6

Then I thought, "Wow, a friend is someone who is as my own soul."
As my own soul...

I have always heard that if you wanted to know who your kids were you just needed to look at their friends... yet it had never occurred to me to say "if I want to know what my soul looks like, then I need to look at my friends" 

Why do we have the friends we have? Why do we call them this treasured word "friend"? When we look at them, their character, their integrity, their heart condition... what do we see? If they are as our own soul what do our friends say about the condition of our own soul? About our own character, our own integrity, our own heart's condition?

When Christ came and walked this earth as the Word made flesh, He joined Himself with several men and He spent much time with these men. He shared His heart, His character, His will, His mind, His integrity with these men. He invested His life in them.

No longer do I call you slaves,
for the slave does not know what his master is doing;
but I have called you friends,
for all things that I have heard
from My Father
I have made known to you.
John 15:15

When we become friends with Christ, He knits His soul with ours. He loves us as Himself, and He is as our own soul. We become one flesh with Him and we behold Him as in a mirror and we begin to represent His image. Others should be able to see Him when they see us.

But we all, with unveiled face,
beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord,
are being transformed into the same image
from glory to glory,
just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 3:18

This thing called friendship is really an amazing beautiful thing. the desire for it comes from our Creator. I love what A.W. Tozer says in his book, The Pursuit of God, when he writes: 

"We have almost forgotten that God is a person and, as such, can be cultivated as any person can. It is inherent in personality to be able to know other personalities, but full knowledge of one personality by another cannot be achieved in one encounter. It is only after long and loving mental intercourse that the full possibilities of both can be explored.
All social intercourse between human beings is a response of personality to personality, grading upward from the most casual brush between man and man to the fullest, most intimate communion of which the human soul is capable. Religion, so far as it is genuine, is in essence the response of created personalities to the creating personality, God. "This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent" (John 17:3).
God is a person, and in the deep of His mighty nature He thinks, wills, enjoys, feels, loves, desires, and suffers as any other person may. In making Himself known to us He stays by the familiar pattern of personality. He communicates with us through the avenues of our minds, our wills and our emotions. The continuous and unembarrassed interchange of love and thought between God and the soul of the redeemed man is the throbbing heart of New Testament religion.
This intercourse between God and the soul is known to us in conscious personal awareness. It is personal..."

Did you see in John 17:3 that God desires that we know Him?
Oh precious one, do we not desire to be known as well?
Is that not what the root of the desire for fame is?
Is it not Satan perverting our God given desire to be known deeply and intimately and fully by Him, our Friend, and turning it into a desire to be known shallowly and lightly and emptily, in quantity instead of quality, by fickle man?

Friendship is personal. It is formed after long loving mental intercourse has taken place, a sharing of the minds, hearts, and souls. It is not formed in the crowd, but from one on one invested time with another person. It is formed when we are willing to lay our armor aside and be vulnerable to another, when we consider others as more important than ourselves, and when we are willing to invest and share our future with the life of someone else.

Then Jonathan made a covenant with David
because he loved him as himself. 
Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him
and gave it to David,
with his armor,
including his sword and his bow and his belt.
1 Samuel 18:3-4

So who do you call friend?
Why do you call them friend?
If they are "as your own soul" as God said in Deuteronomy 13:6 then what do the one's you call friend say about the condition of your soul?

Can Christ call you friend?
Have you laid your armor down?
Have you allowed your soul to be vulnerable to Him?

For we are His workmanship...
Ephesians 2:10

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Feeling Alone In A Crowd

I was asked to share this past Tuesday morning at a women's group about feeling alone in a crowd and the art of friendship... I must say it was terrifying.

The morning began well.

I was up in time.
I had organized the points I had hoped to make and my flow of thoughts were written down. I had highlighted and underlined and asterisked all that I felt God was showing me was important for the ladies that morning.

I left my home ready.

Then, lost in my thoughts, I missed my turn.

Then, everyone's phones are out of whack, including mine.

Finally I get in touch with my friends. (Just one of the many reasons I am thankful for my friends and that I do not travel this road of life alone)

So I make it to my destination with a little help from my friends... but now I am frazzled, unfocused, and terrified. All the old gut wrenching emotions of standing in front of others hits like a ton of bricks in the pit of my stomach.

Oh I was so disappointed in me. Confidence diminished, boldness gone, feelings of unworthiness crashing on the shores of my soul with unrelenting pounding... who in the world did I think I was to be standing up and speaking to anyone?

I thought God had moved me past this... but alas, here I was again in a cold nauseous sweat trying to smile with the best faked confidence I could muster. Contemplating on how could I turn around and run out the door without humiliating myself or the dear friend who believed in me enough to ask me to come and share.

Fear is now rushing over me, not that I will embarrass me...
I am used to that...
But that I will be an embarrassment to my friend.
What if I let her down? What if I make a fool of her? I mean for goodness sake, I am already coming in late... again.

Thoughts of faking an emergency phone call from home emerge... hey it could happen, right?

I thought I would be so well prepared, had hoped I would be so well prepared, had hoped that I would eloquently share all the wonderful things God had showed me as I researched all this stuff on friendship.

I stood up to share in my state of flusteration and absolutely forgot everything.
I even forgot to pray... which I am sure would have calmed me at least a little.
Here I was feeling utterly alone and foolish in a crowd as I stood to share about feeling alone in a crowd.

I have spent the time since my sharing trying to go back over the morning and trying to remember what I shared. Did I make any sense? And then the oh my's, why did I share that's?

I sent a text to another friend and shared my sick to my stomachness and my fear of how I felt I was a blubbering train wreck and she was so kind as to remind me that God used a donkey so she was sure he was able to use whatever I did (well at the moment I most certainly felt like a donkey in the King James translation)

It never ceases to amaze me how often God has to remind me that it is not about my capability but my availability. The power is not in me but in Him and in His Word. I am just a jar of clay with a treasure within it to share with whoever God chooses to bring into my path and with whomever I run into as I go in His commission command.

So now I have to remind myself of the same points I planned to share with others.

1) God said in the beginning that it was not good for man to be alone (Gen 2:18). We need help from each other (Eccles 4:11-12).

2) We cannot bear our burdens alone (Ex 18:18, Deut 1:9-12, Rom 15:1, Gal 6:1-2) even Christ had help when it came to the burden of carrying the cross (Luke 23:26)

3) We are not alone in feeling alone (1 Kings 18:22, Jer 15:17, Ezek 9:8)

4) Sometimes we must be alone in order to discover where we are in life, in our hearts, in our minds, sometimes we must be removed from the distractions of life and others to hear God. (Gen 32:24, 2 Chron 32:31, Daniel 10:8, John 6:15)

5) When we feel alone is when the enemy will attack the hardest (Gen 3:1-5, Luke 4:1-13, 2 Chon 32:31)

6) If we belong to Christ we are never really alone, no matter how we "feel" (John 8:29, John 14:17-18, John 16:32, Psalm 9:10, Psalm 27:9, Heb 13:5)

7) Whenever we "feel" alone we must remember that our feelings will lie to us. Our heart will deceive us and our emotions will confuse us. We must be guided by our renewed minds, renewed by the Word of God, not our hearts, for God is greater than our hearts (Prov 28:26, 1 John 3:20)

8) Many times when we "feel" alone we have chosen to put ourselves in solitary confinement (1 Kings 19:3) either by running away from others or by putting up walls around us by lies we tell so that others, even hopefully God, will not discover who we really are (Isaiah 59:1-6). We weave an outfit of flesh that we think others want to see and we hide ourselves from our own flesh (Isaiah 58:7) and then we live in the darkness of the prison of our own making simply because we fear how others might receive our real authentic selves.

9) We must be honest with ourselves, others, and God (1 John 1:9-10). The biggest lie spoken in our churches today is "I'm fine."

10) We must not fear each other or fear revealing ourselves to one another. Let us never forget that our Savior revealed Himself on the cross, He laid Himself bare in order to become our friend (John 15:15). A true friend loves at all times (Prov 17:17) and perfect love is supposed to cast out fear (1 John 4:18-19) because we can know that we are loved by our Creator God whether anyone else loves us or not.

11) We must love in truth. Our actions must match our words. We can't just say we love, we must show we love (1 John 3:18-20) We cannot love with hypocrisy (Rom 12:9) and experience true fellowship and friendship 

Bottom line is we need each other. I need people in my life who know me. I need my friends to help me on this journey called life. God said it was not good for us to be alone and being in a crowd does not make you "not alone".
Not being alone comes when someone shares your heart, it comes from friendships that are formed from commitment and complete trust. It comes from being willing to let someone see you for you, from being willing to allow them to see your very soul. It also comes from being willing to hear and receive the hard things from those you know love you unconditionally...  
So I don't know about you, but I get by with a little help from my friends :-)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Time's Up

Today is the 10th anniversary of 9/11. This day ten years ago I was substitute teaching at West Morgan High School while my husband was at work and my three month old baby girl was safe at her Grandmother's. I remember this day like it was yesterday. I remember the jaw dropping sight of the one smoking tower, and I then remember the hand over my mouth in utter disbelief as I watched the 2nd plane fly into the 2nd tower, and then I remember my hand to my chest and I remember no longer being able to stand when I heard the news on the Pentagon, because I knew then this was an attack on our nation.

Immediately I wanted a head count of all those I loved. Where were they? Were they safe? My husband left work and came to me at the school and then we went to his mother's to be with our baby and his mother. My Father-in-Law was on lock down at the arsenal... a prime possible target. We lived on pins and needles for a while...

Then we went to war... we still are at war.

The churches did flood that day and for months after.

Hate was stirred that day as well.

Then "tolerance" was pushed in our nation like it had never been pushed before.

I would like to say that our world was turned upside down for good on that day... but sadly I cannot. All we have to do is look at the change in our prime time t.v shows to see which way our nation flipped.

Touched By An Angel had a prime time slot, Cosby, Sister Sister, Home Improvement, Wonderful World of Disney, Promised Land, Kids Say the Darndest Things, America's Funniest Home Videos, etc.

What has those prime time slots in this day?
Think about it...

What I have learned is that when we realize that life is short we will increase the desires of our heart. You want to know the real state of your heart? What is your initial response to "You have one month left to live, how will you spend it?"

Is your answer "Wow how much of this world can I soak in and enjoy before my time's up?"
Is it "I need to experience sex with as many different people as possible now, before I miss it?"
Is it "Alright let's go to Vegas and LA and New York and fly to Paris and live it up?" 

(This mentality to me is about the same as saying, hey I am going down and I want to take as many as I can with me, I will stand either condemned or ashamed before God and I want you to as well)

When we discovered the men who committed the acts of 9/11 what did we learn about their last days? Days that they were fully aware were there last days?

Compare this with our Saviour. How did He spend His last days? Days that He was fully aware were His last days?

Whose example should we follow?
Man's or Jesus's?
We are in the last days... how are you spending them?

after He spoke long ago to the fathers
in the prophets
in many portions
and in many ways,
in these last days
has spoken to us in His Son,"
Hebrews 1:1-2

I believe our nation has exposed its heart in these post 9/11 days... Instead of our nation turning to God and seeking to grow in holiness and purpose, we showed ourselves to be filthy, and a pig that loved to wallow in it's filth, a dog that returns to its vomit...

"And he said to me,
Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book,
for the time is near. 
Let the one who does wrong, still do wrong;
and the one who is filthy, still be filthy;
and let the one who is righteous, still practice righteousness;
and the one who is holy, still keep himself holy.” 
“Behold, I am coming quickly,
and My reward is with Me,
to render to every man according to what he has done.
 I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the first and the last,
the beginning and the end.” 
Blessed are those who wash their robes,
so that they may have the right to the tree of life,
and may enter by the gates into the city."
Revelation 22:10-14

So the time is near. We are not promised tomorrow. If you knew you were on borrowed time... would your desire be to soak up and enjoy more of the lust for the pleasures of this world or would your desire be to get even busier setting others free from the chains of slavery that are embedded in the momentary pleasures of this world?

If your time's up, how do you want to spend each borrowed minute that is left?