~ Tangled Motivation

tangled-motivation

I was talking to a writer the other day who said this, “I’ll have to see if I can find some motivation.”

I wanted to scream. I have news for those who are still in the dream world of “finding motivation.”

Motivation can’t be found. Unlike lost keys, or even the coin of great worth, motivation can’t be found. It’s not lost. Motivation is made.

It’s not made from feelings, or emotions, or delivered by a muse, or even from on high. Motivation can only be formed by rational, deliberate, intentional decisions.

God Himself can’t and won’t motivate you. Not that He’s not all-powerful, but because His first priority is to give us the complete freedom of CHOICE. He made a plan before time began. Every nuance of history and the future was woven before the first man was formed. There are no tangled threads in God’s tapestry.

We, however, are overwhelmed with choices and decisions to make. Therein lies the problem. We let the overwhelmingness of our days keep us from being intentional. We take the easy and lazy way out. We deceive ourselves into believing that it’s all too much. But it’s not too much. God doesn’t leave us hopeless and helpless. He put within every believer His Spirit to guide us into all wisdom.

We make thousands of decisions every single day. What percentage of them do we make after asking for His help? “Pray without ceasing” takes on a whole new light, doesn’t it?

Do you want to get things accomplished? Reach your goals? Work on the real priorities, instead of being sabotaged by the subterfuge of instant gratification?

Make some real decisions! Motivation will follow.

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~ I was THIS Close!

Alligator

I was. I was this close to this alligator. Oh, I realize he wasn’t a really big alligator, but I was still this close. I took this picture with my iPhone, no telephoto lens involved.

He could’ve reached out and chomped off my arm in a heartbeat. But he didn’t.
In fact, he didn’t even flinch. He blinked a few times, but he kept staring at me with those reptilian eyes. Maybe it had something to do with the thick glass between us at the aquarium.

Yeah, I’m sure that was it. Because he did look like he would like to chomp off my arm.

Don’t we sometimes tempt temptation like we had aquarium glass between us and it? Na-na-na-na-na! You can’t get me!

He’s waiting to get you.

Don’t give in. Put out your hand and feel the glass. God’s got you.

~ Self-Help is Rot

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This picture and the title may be all you need for this God-Glimpse.

Our very best efforts to repair ourselves turn out like this–a bad idea made worse by lack of experience, resources and patience.

Rot started the problem. A section of the rafter had to go before the fungus spread to the rest of the roof. We paid someone to repair the roof,  but noticed a couple of years later that the roof was sagging again, in the same location. It wasn’t enough to remove just a section of the board, the entire rafter should have been replaced with new. No wonder the roof was sagging!

It’s not enough to get rid of sin, bad habits or even weaknesses; they must be replaced with the proper support, or the roof of our good intentions will soon leak and eventually cave in.

Only The Master Carpenter has the experience, resources and patience to repair the rot of our lives. Only His Word is strong enough to shore up the roof over our heads.

Replace the old rafters of your life with new Living Words from the Father of Life.

God Glimpses # 26 – We’re not NCIS, Ma’am

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Let’s just say that when I crawled out of bed the other morning, dreading a stressful day, calling 911 wasn’t even a blip on my radar.

But calling 911  turned out to be one of the highlights of my day. As my daughter said after I hung up, “Mom, you really called 911? This is so exciting!” She was positively giddy when she learned that they were on their way, and I have to admit, it was an adrenaline high for this adventure girl, too. The policeman’s grin throughout the process made it clear that we were the highlight of his day, as well.

We had heard that someone broke into our summer cottage earlier in the week, so we stopped by to check it out. Since no damage was done earlier, I wasn’t too concerned, other than to make sure the place was locked up so it wouldn’t happen again. As soon as we pulled up, we saw that the door curtains were missing. We followed the trail of evidence to the front door, where the coffee table was wedged against the double doors to hold them shut, and noticed that the doors weren’t locked. Obviously, he’d been back since earlier in the week. The bags of food on the floor and the cigarettes spread all over the place were a dead giveaway.

We moved the coffee table back, and noticed torn screens on the front porch, and the glass of the storm door was down. After sliding the storm door glass up, I turned around and noticed a black fabric bag leaning against one of the inside doors. Since the texture was rough, I knew it couldn’t hold fingerprints, so I opened it gingerly and peeked inside to see a half dozen more cigarette packs and a cell phone.

That was enough evidence for me; it was time to get the police in on this. I hoped the cell phone would be enough. I’ve been in a friend’s house that was fingerprinted and it took us both hours to clean. I didn’t ever want to repeat that.

Several hours later, the end result was that the policeman found a medicine container in the bag with the perp’s name on it. Turns out he’s a drug addict whose family dropped him off on the grounds knowing there were empty cottages where he could hide out, because they were sick of him.

While we waited for forensics, we got an education on which surfaces show fingerprints and which don’t. That’s when the title statement came in to play, “We’re not NCIS, Ma’am. We all love Abby, but she’s not dealing in the real world. Forensics isn’t that good.”

The thought crossed my mind that in so many cases, only God knows “who done it.”

Ironic thought. The perps know “who done it,” and they’re hiding out, hoping no one finds out, always on their guard, waiting for the day when a cop shows up on their doorstep.

How many of us have a perp mentality when it comes to God? There’s something in our life we’re ashamed of, and we’re on guard, waiting for the “gotcha” that we know we deserve, even though we know in our heads that he promised forgiveness.

Isn’t it time we stopped hiding out, stopped letting our shortcomings and sins alienate us from church, friends, and family–and simply confess? After all, only God knows. Only he has the answer, and only he can promise healing.

God Glimpses #24 – Am I an Artist, or a Cow?

Leather Jackets

God made me with artistic talent. God made me to write.

I am not a plumber. I am not an electrician. I cannot repair cars.

I am not a cow. Cows have a multitude of uses, and most of those uses come after the cow stops giving milk. Dog food, glue, belts and gloves and purses and shoes and jackets.

Book covers.

I am not a cow. I don’t have to wait until I’m dead to be useful. I may never look at a leather book cover the same way. God made me to fulfill a purpose.

I’m so glad I get to do it while I’m alive!

No more guilt because God made me to be something awesome, something I enjoy. Whoever heard of a car mechanic complaining that he hates working on cars, that it takes up his every thought? Who ever heard of a car mechanic caring whether people thought he should be paid to do his job? Really, where does this guilt come from?

Do people need leather book covers? Leather jackets? Leather gloves or purses? No, they want.

My job is to be so good at what God called me to be that people think they need what I have to offer. Because what I have to offer is a glimpse into what God can do with someone with a little talent and a lot of baggage, someone who is submitted to the process of God’s refinery. Someone who’s not going to let what I’m not stop me from becoming what He IS.

Because He’s called me into His likeness.

God Glimpses #20 – 2 WILD 4 U

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The second I pulled close to this car, jealousy ensued.

4Runner,  2WLD4U license plate . . . Adventure!

Seriously, images of myself with a rifle, highjacking said car, crossed my mind.

Then I remembered that I was driving my daughter back from a non-visit with a specialist. Why a non-visit? Because I had the day right, but the month was wrong. I make my own adventures. Who needs to go to the wilds for adventure?

For all I knew, that person ahead of me might be miserable down south in Philadelpha, sweating in shorts, while I was bundled up for the cold, wishing for spring.

It’s all perspective. God says don’t look on other people’s things, their lives, look to your own. Do what you’re supposed to do. Be who He made you to be.

Embrace your own adventure. There is so much good to see where we are.

God Glimpses #16 – Persistence

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I want this man’s metabolism! Do you see all those plates and bowls lined up in front of this guy?  They’re all his! I’ve watched him week after week packing away this amount of food at a community dinner.

So, how do you get this type of metabolism? You stay active. He golfs, plays tennis, walks, swims, you name it. When he moves, he moves. When he eats, he eats. He can afford to, because he’s burned off the calories.

It goes to show that we can live large when we are willing to pay the price. God gives us incredible freedom of choice and amazing bodies to take advantage of our options.