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  • James Chapter 4-5:6 Week Three

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    3 posts, 3 voices, 608 views, started May 17, 2009

    Posted on Sunday, May 17, 2009 by Laurie Zieber

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    • Sapphire
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      Chapter 4

      vs. 1-7

      The chaos you see around you is no accident.  Decisions were made.  Chaos is the result.  You have no one to blame but yourself.   If  you think you had nothing to do with the Wall Street mess,  the real estate mess, the mounting Federal debt,  the mounting personal debt of Americans, if you think you are a victim- you are not.  You bought in.  You did.  Admit it.

      Each one of us has an internal dialog and from that dialog we decide what we live for, fight for, what we sacrifice our lives for and what we will sacrifice our relationship with Him for.   You had that dialog when you first received a warning message that spending was out of control, that credit was being abused, when you first began to sense that this flourishing economy may be a house of cards.  But you did nothing.   Your internal dialog rationalized and you convinced yourself that you deserve this enormous paycheck- that your income indicated your favor from God.  You stated with pleasure that you were blessed.  You spent that which you called your "blessing" and saved none of it for those who would suffer and need help in a darker day.  That was not yours to spend.  It was His blessing to be used for His glory!   What is being said in that internal dialogue now? Are you panicked? Angry? Jealous of those who still have what you've lost?

      The more we stomp our feet like spoiled children, demanding that we deserve and are entitled, the more decisions we make without regard for who suffers, who pays, or who dies.  Without regard for Him.  And our practice becomes to move forward in decision making without asking Him what He wants. We will not be told, "No."

      And so it goes.  In our commitment to achieve our own will, we make friends with His enemies and still claim that we are His.  The outcome of our double minded, two timing , self serving and scatter brained living- is this chaos.

      vs 8-17

      Now, what?  Is your internal dialogue still stating how blessed you are?  Because, you are.  Your blessing- His grace doesn't soar and crash like Wall Street.  It isn't beyond your grasp. It is where it always has been and where it will remain forever.  Go back find it at the cross.  Take yourself there and let it all out.  Holler and cry about how much you've lost and how hard you worked for it and what you sacrificed and how you deserve it until you empty it all out of your heart and all that remains is a whisper .

      Then whisper to Him for forgiveness and a new vision.   A panoramic view of His glory and your purpose.   Stay there until that familiar feeling of His joy, His peace, His strength and His power returns to you again.  And the laughter will come.  You'll know you are free when you can laugh at your fully forgiven self in your internal dialogue and say, "Who did I think I was?"  "Who am I to sacrifice the lives, the futures of others for my own greed?"

      And now you will live differently.  Success is not the same as you thought before.  Blessings are daily and countless and you are aware of them all around you.  You are filled with thankfulness and not entitlement.  You make no claims to your own power, your own plans, your own words.  Your eyes are open and your spirit is searching for some place, some one to serve- for Him.  You are blessed,  you say,  to reflect well on His word.

      You don't stomp your foot anymore.  Even if you know you're right.  It's okay.  You'd rather lose the battle than start that self importance stuff up again.

      Chapter 5

      vs 1-6

      There's hope for the ones who will humble themselves and ask Him to correct their internal dialog but there is no hope for those who refuse.  If you are one of those who remains committed to your own personal fortune and you'll saddle the people with the responsibility of paying your debts...your spa days will soon be over, my friend.

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          Laurie Zieber wrote May 17, 2009
        • MBG,

          Through this study of James I was looking for where I was culpable in this American mess. What I personally was convicted about is that if I had treated all of my blessings with an attitude of honoring from whom they came I would be in a different position today.  

          I didn’t spend beyond my means either.  Meaning that I can afford all of my monthly payments. tongue out  

          But if I would have seen a bigger vision- I would be free from debt, free from fear of an imploded economy and able to financially help those who are suffering.  

          I have this weird philosophy that if I look at myself and my attitudes- look in the mirror first- I’ll find somewhere that I can in some tiny way change the direction we‘re headed. Not in a narcissistic way but in a “We the people” way...

          Thus, the sad ending of my tawdry affair with those sultry, strappy, summer sandals estatic



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