Week 19

Nine Secondary Steps to Nothing

“Apart from me, you can do nothing.” – John 15:5

If we were to list in reverse order the top 10 responses to God’s will/plan/call for our lives, most of us would be motivated to give a good effort to 2 thru 10 on the list – that is, if we were hurting enough, and especially if we were persuaded the result would be health and happiness. A sample list would be the following:

10. Love (serve) your neighbor / Forgive
9. Give time and money to good causes
8. Get education / Prepare for life’s vocation
7. Pray at meals and at bedtime
6. Study the Bible / Attend church
5. Budget finances / Pay cash for purchases
4. Get sufficient sleep
3. Exercise daily
2. Eat a healthy diet

The hardest challenge, however, as I have determined from counseling and also my own personal experience, would be response to number one  - which is to schedule the same time daily (at least 30-60 minutes) for Scripture reading (in order to hear God), confession of need, prayer, and quiet time worship (in order to experience and manifest Christ).

And yet, this first response is many times more essential and productive, in terms of longevity and quality of life (health and happiness), than the other nine responses combined.

“I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing (experiencing) Christ.” – Philippians 3:8

“For what human effort was powerless to do, God did.” –Romans 8:3

DonLoy Whisnant/The Grace Perspective 12E11

Healing: The Outcome of Accepting Provisions, Not an Event in Answer to Prayer

God's plan for our renewal is like a seed, so we can expect the process to take a while. That’s because, healing and recovery is not a future event but an ongoing "sowing and reaping" process which starts the moment we begin to include God's provisions into our lives. The most critical provision we must include is the Life of Christ which flows into our inner being as we take extended time daily to sit quietly before him with an open Bible for Scripture reading, confession of need, prayer, and worship.

DonLoy Whisnant/The Grace Perspective 12E10

Holy Incentives for the Husband’s Investment at Home

Husbands are appropriately motivated for the investment they make in their homes in the following ways (in descending order):

1.      The call of God;
2.      Personal met needs;
3.      (resulting in) Competence, enablement;
4.      (most essentially) The love of Christ in him for others;
5.      (so that) Others (their health needs) matter;
6.      Burden for their unmet needs;
7.      Opportunity given them by an open door; and
8.      The recovery of those they serve.

DonLoy Whisnant/The Grace Perspective 12E09

Emergency Support: A Sometimes Essential Solution

Sometimes people hurt so badly that the most immediate need they have is for emergency care to save their lives. Support for learning how to experience God would not be their most urgent need (although trusting Christ’s death on the cross as their only hope for going to Heaven would certainly be).

For example, someone who has been run over by a truck may be near death and in such pain they might not be able to comprehend or even hear the words spoken to them – the same as someone devastated by emotional hurt.

For this reason, GracePoint steps back so that the EMT folks can do what they do with the hope we will have an opportunity at a later time to provide hurting people support for the choices they will need to make which will increase and establish them in long-term health.

DonLoy Whisnant/The Grace Perspective 12E08

An Expectation for Exactness, an Extreme Downside of the Melancholy Disposition

The Melancholy temperament type is hard to please. Melancholies fuss about things that are out of place or not up to standard - for example, the quality of products or services they purchase. Their need for exactness is so intense that only quality products and services can meet the need. It is a valid, inborn trait. (The world needs some folks like that, you know!)

Melancholies also tend to fuss about behavior. But God can transform their hearts so that they grieve more about people’s brokenness than they fuss about their behavior.

An extreme downside of this temperament is to reject without reason. It is not a rejection based in conviction but in arrogance and anger and sometimes ignorance. It stunts growth and, worse, when that rejection is of God’s leadership for their lives, it results in increased brokenness. This is information we share with counselees to support them for understanding their need to experience Christ daily so that the heart he has for the Father can increasingly be ours also.

DonLoy Whisnant/The Grace Perspective 12E07

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