Fake News

Fake news, we have all heard the term. It is everywhere.The trouble is that when you hear something often enough, it becomes gospel truth. I love the quote “A lie can fly half way around the world while the truth is still putting on its boots.”Lies certainly do fly quickly in the modern world of the internet and social media. The trouble is that fake news spreads like a contagious illness regardless of the truthfulness of the content.

I think that Christians are just a susceptible to fake news as anyone else. There are many false doctrines out there that are taken as gospel truth. This can get dangerous very quickly as it is a proven fact that we tend to pay attention to beliefs that we already hold. We seek people who hold like minded beliefs. Even when new information is presented that contradicts the beliefs that we are holding, we resist that information and double down on proving we are right instead of searching for the real truth.

This should concern us for a couple of reasons. People usually practice resistance to anything that goes against what they currently believe are much less likely to listen to what we have to share. Realize that those we are to share with are often taking in what we are sharing with a doubting heart.

 Second, we have to make darn sure that the news we are sharing is not fake news.

When it comes to fake news versus the truth of God, we have an enemy that is a master deceiver. Satan is the ultimate liar and the father of all lies. Make no mistake, every false religion, every cult, every misguided philosophy and every thought that is opposed to God, is authored by Satan himself.

 Satan has but one goal, to destroy that which is of God..

 

Our message should be about the faith and hope we have in Jesus Christ. Our message should proclaim the great love our Savior has for us.

Just as we are working to share the good news of what Jesus did for us, Satan is working to spread fake news.

We must become unstoppable crusaders for the truth. God is the source of all truth. God is our foundation in a world run afoul with the lies of Satan.

This means we go the extra mile and we must spent as much time communing with God and in the Word of God as it takes to make sure we know the news we are championing is based on true Godly foundations.

The real truth, the absolute truth of God must be boldly proclaimed and preached by us, His crusaders.

 Lets get out there and spread some Good News!


Dottie

Who Is God To You

Our lives are filled with many people. Friends, family, acquaintances, co-workers etc. Each are known to us by their names whether it be the names their parents gave them or some other description that helps us know and remember who they are and how they fit into our lives.

Isn’t it amazing that God, our wonderful, personal God, fits so many roles in our lives. Depending on the season we are in, He can be our Deliverer, Prince of Peace, our comforter. He can be our refuse, our source of strength, our power, our conscience.

God is all things to us.

 Isn’t it wonderful to know that when we are feeling rejected, tattered and torn by the world that God, our Wonderful Counselor is always there. He has always existed and will always exist. God is our eternal source of strength.

Isn’t it wonderful to know that when we are feeling defeated and discouraged that God, our Mighty God has promised that with Him, all things are possible.

Isn’t it wonderful that when we feel alone and lonely that God, our Everlasting Father reminds us that we are not set aside, we are set apart. For to be set aside is to be rejected but to be set apart is to belong to the family of God.

Isn’t it wonderful to know that above all else and above all other names, God is simply the Great I Am.

Talk to God on a personal level, let Him reveal who He wants to be for you.

Dottie

………………….and so I ride

Renew your mind, avoid the hole

“I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in
I am lost……..I am helpless
It isn’t my fault
It takes forever to find a way out.

I walk down the same street
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk
I pretend I don’t see it
I fall in again.
I can’t believe I am in the same place
But, it isn’t my fault
It still takes me a long time to get out.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it is there.
I still fall in. It is a habit.
My eyes are open. I know where I am.
It is my own fault. I get out immediately.

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I walk around it.

I walk down another street.

Portia Nelson

 

I love this poem. Read the poem carefully. Read it as it was written, five different chapters of your life. It is the story of your life, it is the story of my life.

In life chapter 1 we are wandering, lost, alone and helpless. There is a hole we have fallen into through no particular fault of our own. It may be a death, a job loss, a betrayal, any one of a number of unexpected pitfalls that life throws our way. We fall into the hole and there is nothing we can do about it. Our particular hole represents anger, anxiety, worry, grief, etc. It is the darkest hole you have ever experienced, you see no way out and you are there through no fault of your own. This sucks.

You climb out the same way, on your own, with your own sweat and tears. It takes you forever. You are cussing yourself and hitting yourself with negative, critical and judgmental thoughts right and left. You are thinking to yourself how stupid you are and therefore you are right where you deserve to be.

You quickly learn that doing the climbing on your own is hard work and affords little upward motion. Day after day you toil but you stay in the hole much longer than you anticipated. It occurs to you (barely) that God may be able to help you climb a little faster but the job of climbing out takes precedence over anything else and soon the thought of God evaporates in your sweat.
In life chapter 2 you find yourself on the same street with the same hole. You are fully aware the hole is there yet you walk straight towards it. Before long you drop right back into where you were not so long ago. The hole is still deep, dark and scary, it hasn’t changed a bit it is exactly the way you left it. It is becoming familiar.
You are living the same story you always have, you are expecting different results but because your pattern is the same, the results are the same. You fall in the hole yet again. You are thinking to yourself if the other people in your life would grow up and learn to act right your life would go a whole lot better. So now you draw up a plan to fix those around you. It could be that you even enlist God’s help. If God can’t fix your husband, your family, your boss, your friends, (you know, those people who make you fall into the hole) then who can. When God fixes all those people, you can avoid the hole. It really is as simple as that. You are convinced that someone else pushed you over the edge to the hole.

Life chapter 3 finds you on the same familiar street and the deep, scary hole is still where it has always been. It is almost a weird sort of comfort to see it because you count on it to always be where you left it. Yet once again, even though you know the hole intimately, you know if you take the next step you will tumble downward, you do it anyway.

You know you did it and you know you are totally responsible but because of your past experience with your hole, you climb out immediately. Having fallen into this same hole so many times you are awakening to the source of the problem. Maybe it’s time to find a different route, after all it is your fault you are there. Repeating the same mistakes over and over will have the same results over and over. Having come to this conclusion you can begin to change. God is reminding you that He is there to help you with your “hole” problem. There is a nagging in the back of your mind that if you seek Him before you begin your trip down the street with the hole, maybe He will come up with a different answer to the same problem that has always plagued you? As you are jumping (literally) out of the hole this time, you are coming up with a goal to include Him in your “hole” plan. You come to the realization that every trip into the hole has increased your need to ask for God’s help. Yes it was in slow increments because you have always been a slow learner. However, every time you asked Him, He helped you. When you asked Him for little He helped a little. What would happen if you asked Him for a complete solution to this nagging “hole” problem? After emerging from the brief stint in the hole, you head home to open that Bible that is……….somewhere in your house.

Life chapter 4 Is walking down the same street, coming upon the same hole but avoiding the hole. It is a whole new exhilarating experience. You saw it coming, knew what to anticipate from past experiences and you simply walked around it. A talk with God has given you a change of course which gives you a whole new set of possibilities. There really is something to this God thing. He is here to help you dig out of the hole, you are now beginning to have experience of that. But the amazing thing you are learning, is He is here to help you not only climb out of the hole, but to conquer the hole. God has shown you alternate routes and He has given you the gift of the knowledge that you are free to take them.
Life chapter 5 is your new day. It is the day you finally change streets. Life chapter 5 is the marvelous renewing of your mind. It is the time you realize that there will be holes in the street but you now have the courage to walk a different path, around the hole. You know you can because you trust He will do as He promised and give you exactly what you need to take the detour.
Renewing of the mind is happening. When you mind is changed by God, your life changes and the hole no longer consumers you. So when someone asks you to help them climb out of their hole, say, here, let me show you what worked for me!

Dottie
…………and so I rideimage

CMA is in the midst of our annual Labor Day Campout. Breakfast this morning was provided by fellow campers. The hospitality was amazing and the biscuits and gravy were wonderful and nourished our bodies. However, it was the conversation that nourished my soul. A comment was made that started me thinking about truth and how society perceives it. 
“Truth is still truth even if no one believes it, a lie is still a lie, even if everyone believes it.”
If asked what the truth is in our world today, you would likely get many different answers. The concept of truth is highly distorted in the world we live in. Something I read recently best describes to me the state of truth in our society. “To some, truth is subjective, the truth is highly dependent on unique and personal preferences and opinions. Others believe truth is a collective judgement, a cultural consensus and some even deny the concept of truth altogether.” 

Is it any wonder we are a world in chaos and decline? It seems the idea of absolute truth (defined as something that is true at all times, in all places and has relevance for our lives) does not exist. Confusion and chaos are the results of living by the world’s standard of truth. 
Ours is a society that treats truth like a made up story or more to the point, a story we make up ourselves. We hear from others, “ believe what makes sense to you, live for what brings you pleasure and for gosh sakes, don’t have a fit when someone else’s “truth” doesn’t fit your version of “truth”. Make moral and ethical decisions on what seems best to you and hope for the best. We are unique and incredible individuals and God created us to be that way. So because God puts us first, we need to put ourselves first also….. correct? 
Somehow we have forgotten that we are to make decisions based on what God thinks, not on Mother Earth or our inner desires, not on our thoughts, feelings,popular opinion, personal reasonings, scientific suppositions or anything associated with the physical world in which we live. We are not so quick to ask What would Jesus do any longer. As long as we are tolerant of others and live by the golden rule, we are good, right?
So I kept digging and came up with a definition written from what the Bible teaches. “Truth is that which is consistent with the mind, will, character, glory and being of God. In short, truth is the self expression of God.” 
There is good, and bad, dark and light in the world, but there is only one truth. Truth cannot have any true meaning apart from God, God embodies the very definition of truth. 
 Truth is not a principle, truth is a person. Truth is Jesus Christ. 

John 14:6 “I am the way and the truth and the life…………..No one comes to the Father except through me. 

Come home to the one and only truth you need, the one and only absolute truth there is. It is an issue of eternal significance. Truth will bring you life. 
Dottie
…………….and so I ride
“Truth is still truth even if no one believes it, a lie is still a lie, even if everyone believes it.”

If asked what the truth is in our world today, you would likely get many different answers. The concept of truth is highly distorted in the world we live in. Something I read recently best describes to me the state of truth in our society. “To some, truth is subjective, the truth is highly dependent on unique and personal preferences and opinions. Others believe truth is a collective judgement, a cultural consensus and some even deny the concept of truth altogether.”

Is it any wonder we are a world in chaos and decline? It seems the idea of absolute truth (defined as something that is true at all times, in all places and has relevance for our lives) does not exist. Confusion and chaos are the results of living by the world’s standard of truth.

Ours is a society that treats truth like a made up story or more to the point, a story we make up ourselves. We hear from others, “ believe what makes sense to you, live for what brings you pleasure and for gosh sakes, don’t have a fit when someone else’s “truth” doesn’t fit your version of “truth”. Make moral and ethical decisions on what seems best to you and hope for the best. We are unique and incredible individuals and God created us to be that way. So because God puts us first, we need to put ourselves first also….. correct?

Somehow we have forgotten that we are to make decisions based on what God thinks, not on what Mother Earth or our inner desires, thoughts, feelings,popular opinion, personal reasonings, scientific suppositions or anything associated with the physical world in which we live. We are not so quick to ask What would Jesus do any longer. As long as we are tolerant of other and live by the golden rule, we are good, right?

So I kept digging and came up with a definition written from what the Bible teaches. “Truth is that which is consistent with the mind, will, character, glory and being of God. In short, truth is the self expression of God.”

There is good, and bad, dark and light in the world, but there is only one truth. Truth cannot have any true meaning apart from God, God embodies the very definition of truth.

 Truth is not a principle, truth is a person. Truth is Jesus Christ.

John 14:6 “I am the way and the truth and the life…………..No one comes to the Father except through me.

Come home to the one and only truth you need, the one and only absolute truth there is. It is an issue of eternal significance. Truth will bring you life.

Dottie

…………….and so I ride

FREE AT LAST I read about an English minister who liked to say that he ministers to the lost, the least, the lonely and the last. I have felt like all those things at times. Sometimes all at once, sometimes one or the other. If I were to be honest at least one of those things is usually with me most of the time. Doesn’t it seem like we are deposited in this lost and lonely place and then forgotten about. We wonder how God could have so easily forgotten our address and phone number. But that is Satan inspired thinking. Of course he wants us to think we are helplessly and hopelessly lost and forgotten. The truth is, according to John 10:10 that although Satan does come to steal, kill and destroy Jesus came to give us life and give it to us abundantly. Praise God that He sent His son to heal the broken hearted (me), to liberate me from my prison, He came to restore my sight so that I can see the truth of what God offers me. Holy Father help me to look up to you before I look around my world. Remind me what the world is versus what you offer and help me make the right choices. Dottie

Another Problem, the same deceiver

Another problem-The same deceiver
Satan is so very good at deceiving us. He will use anything he can but one of his favorite ways to bring us down is to use our own minds against us.
I love God, I am heavy. Nothing about those two things has changed very much for very long. I struggle with both at times but at the end of the day, both remain with me.
These struggles, God and weight,seem to come together in certain ways. Satan loves to plant a little seed in my mind and watch as I take that seed, give it all the water and food it needs to go from seed to full blown vegetative bush that bears rotten fruit.
Let me give you an example. I have let my weight be a deterrent to sharing the Word of God. In my mind a good evangelist has to be thin. To be an overweight evangelist seems counter productive. I may be talking to someone about the joy of what Jesus has done for me but in my mind I am thinking that this person is never going to listen to me because what this person is looking at (an overweight me) proves that I talk the talk but do not walk the walk. My mind is throwing out erroneous thinking at a break neck pace. She must not believe in what she is telling me, has she never heard that self-control is a virtue, did she miss that one in her bible reading?
Oh Satan is good, don’t forget he can use everything available to him to fight for what he wants, even scripture. He will distort your thinking. Believe it because he is doing it every day.
He has used Romans 12:1 in that way in my life. I pounded the part of the scripture that told me to take my everyday habits, sleeping, eating working (emphasis on eating for this purpose) and use it as an offering to God beecause embracing what God does for me is the best thing I can do for him.
All it brought was shame because I could not seem to get my eating under control and my weight climbed and climbed. How could I offer to God my eating habits when they were in deplorable condition?
Somehow I never saw the second half to that verse. I had blinders on and you can bet those blinders were manufactured by Satan.
I completely disregarded that sound advice that followed. It says to look up before we look around. We are told to quit conforming to the things of the world we live in. God will tell us what He wants from us if we look for it. Most importantly, He wants us to fix our attention on Him and let His healing change us from the inside out, not the other way around. This scripture also offers the biggest blast of fresh air and good news to those of us who hate ourselves from the outside in. We are reminded that God brings out the best in us.
Scripture does speak clearly to us about honoring our bodies and how wonderfully we are made. It is a beautiful verse.
Psalm 139:13-16
Let’s take a minute to read this. “Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out’ you formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank you, High God- you are breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration- what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body’ You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth’ all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I had even lived one day.
So tell me, are we taking God’s word for who we are or are we applying social conventions for what society thinks should be the proper size and what we should weigh?
I know it is hard to undo the detrimental thinking that has ingrained itself in our minds since childhood. However, society buys into the lies that Satan peppers our path with. Society not only buys in to his lies, they have made it big business.
Satan says- You are fat, you are worthless and every word you say is tinged by those things.
God says- You are marvelously made. I know you inside and out because I made you. I will bring out the best in you……………if you let me.
Digging deeper into Psalm 139: 13-16
In our mother’s womb what was formed first, our inside or our outside? __________________________How and why is this significant in your life? ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
We often berate ourselves for how we look on the outside and what the scale says. Take the part of the scripture that says “I am marvelously made” and thoughtfully, slowly, methodically and truthfully name each part of your body and why it is a marvelous and miraculous creation of God’s hand. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
What does it mean to you personally that God knows you inside and out and knows every bone in your body?______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Why do you think it was important enough to mention in scripture that God did not throw us together in assembly line fashion but rather created us “bit by bit from nothing into something” ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
“Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth’ all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I had even lived one day.” Taking all that you have just worked through about the way in which you were created, name your book. __________________________________________
Dottie

Are you searching for what you lost or searching for what you never knew you had?

1 Peter 3:4
The loveliness that lives inside you.
“You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within. The unending beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit which is so precious to God.”

Looking for what you have lost

We as women spend our whole lives trying to define ourselves by the unrealistic expectations that we have either set for ourselves, or have let society set for us. Myself, being one of the female persuasion, often wonder why I do that? I will take my Mom’s view, my neighbors view, the latest trend on social media and televisions view on what a woman should look like. Most if not all of those opinions are based on nothing but a personal judgement and competition. No researched facts, nothing but trends and fads and what feels right at the moment. We fear looking like anything except what everyone else looks like. Once again we are looking around before or we look up for answers. If everyone else isn’t doing it then by golly, it can’t be right. I need the latest book, fashion, exercise equipment etc, then I will be whole and finally happy. If I follow this or that diet and this or that exercise program I can be proud of myself.
I can tell you with absolute certainty that you cannot invent a new kind of diet or exercise program, buy all the latest fashions, there is nothing that is going to work wonders for you long term unless you stop searching fruitlessly for what has thus far eluded you. As Dr. Phil says, how is that working for you?
If we lose ourselves to what society says we must, we are gaining nothing even if the latest program is successful. It won’t last. How many times have we lost 5, 10, 20 or even 100 pounds just to find ourselves putting it all back on and a few more to boot?
Could it possibly be that we are looking for what we need in all the wrong places? We all know the void we feel, you know, the one we try to fill with food or fancy clothes, exercise equipment that we never use. We are so inventive with the things we try to fill the void with but that is because we buy into what society says beautiful looks like and not the truth. It is important to remember where our beauty really comes from.
There are a lot of things that the void inside us can be filled with, but for the purposes of this writing I am speaking only of using food and weight loss to fill the empty place that resides in us. I speak of this because it is a subject that I have some expertise in and have in fact, lived with for every day of my life.
We are looking for what we have lost and the crazy thing is most of the time we don’t know that we have misplaced it. We feel the void but we attribute it to stress of life. This way of living is so ingrained in us that we are unaware we are on a one way trip to nowhere, or at the very least another trip to the Ice Cream Café. The thing is, after the ice cream excursion, we feel emptier than before. We feel guilt for being so weak. We feel stupid in our fat clothes. We feel there is nothing on this earth that is going to fix this for us. Well at least the last thought is correct.
There is sisters, a way forward, there are answers to finding what we have lost, if we know where to look for them. There is victory to be found.
In most cases the lives we live now are all we have ever known. We keep doing the same thing and getting the same results but expecting something different. Maybe the name of this chapter ia a little misleading. We spend our lives not so much looking for what we have lost but searching for what we never knew we had. The thing is we can have no hope of finding what has been eluding us for so long until we figure out just what we are looking for, where we can find it and how to keep it once we find it.
If we are honest with ourselves we ARE concerned with what we look like when we venture into the world. We adorn ourselves with the latest fashion, coordinating jewelry, and shoes. To be sure there is nothing wrong with this as long as it is not our primary goal. We were created to worship the God who created us. We were not created to be thin, fashion horses, exercise goddesses or anything else we try to mold ourselves into.
Romans 12:1
I have to believe that we are all looking for the beautiful, lovely, gentle and strong person who is inside us. The Bible tells us there is an unending gentle and quiet spirit in all of us. God has placed a beauty in each and every one of us that absolutely shines if we let it. The fact is, we are beautiful simply because we have been created that way. Why is it so hard for us to believe that. Why is it so hard for us to take God at His word?
Because sisters, we live in a human world that treats God’s word as an afterthought and not the unerring Book of Life that it is. Like Ronald Reagan said, within the covers of the Bible lie the answers for all our problems.
I want to open that well inside me that boils with unending gentleness and beauty. I want the loveliness that lives inside me. I want to know it is there and I want to know it will never fail me. Let’s start with what the Bible says about this subject.
In 1 Peter 3:3-4 the apostle Peter wrote the following to Christian wives.
“Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God” (1 Peter 3:3-4).

I asked earlier how we can take what the Bible says about Christ living inside us and make it our own story. The answer is probably not what you want to hear and is certainly not easy to live out. However, the truth is that you simply decide to live as God would want you to. Period, that is it. You make the choice to look to God first and the world second. We decide to weave our lives with purity, reverence and holiness. We must clothe ourselves with the things God has called us to do.
I am so glad that I can look at my world with glasses colored with His glory. I stand tall knowing that I am ALL that God created me to be. God does not love me in spite of who I am, He loves me because of who I am! I can live a successful and joyous life because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14)