Monday, December 14, 2015

Destruction: Spirit, Soul And Body

When Adam and Eve sinned, death entered into the species of mankind. Through propagation of the species sin and death is passed on to each generation. Did you ever wonder why if death entered in, then why didn't they actually die in that moment? Well, they did die.

The creation looks forward to the day when it will join God's children in glorious freedom from death and decay.

The part of their being that died instantly was their spirit. The death of their spirit separated Adam and Eve, and therefore mankind, from God. Without a living spirit within to communicate with the living God, a relationship was not possible.

In a cascade effect from sin entering in, the fall of mankind impacted all of creation. God cursed the creation and the redemption of the universe is tied to the redemption of mankind.Whoa!

God Is The Only Source Of Life

The Spirit of God is the source of life. Sin destroyed the spirit of man and the effect was a soul and body that although not dead began a process of expending the life that was present, unto a final death.

And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. - Ephesians 2:1-2 NASB

Friday, December 11, 2015

3 Functional Systems, 1 Person

We interrupt this broadcast for this critical update... We are not just an insignificant machine subject to the mere physical world. It doesn't take too much observation to get a hint that we are much more than flesh and blood plodding along in the universe.

Then the Lord God formed man.

The scriptures give us the insight of our entire being. They illustrate our make up and detail the many facets of who we are and where we have impact in this world.

When God, took the dust of the ground (to form the body) and breathed into it His breath of life (the spirit of a man) Adam became a living soul (soul).

Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again. - 1 Thessalonians 5:23 NLT

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

ITCZ 101 - A Sincere Approach

A key part of getting In The Cool Zone is coming to the Lord in a sincere way. We want to always approach others in a sincere manner as well. Your sincerity is a super power and it comes from a thought process that is seeking the truth.

You must love the Lord you God with all your heart.


Truth Is Armor

The first piece of armor listed in the Armor of God is truth. Seeking the truth in all things, in every encounter keeps us from trying to, "win" arguments or "always be right" about a topic. We do not need to force what we know into a topic, situation or discussion.

We can sincerely have a discussion and have no other objective other than seeking and delivering the truth.

Other powers to add to sincerity are forgiveness, listening, curiosity and a willingness to learn. There are many more super powers to discuss but for today, let's raise our awareness on our sincerity and seeking the truth.

Monday, December 7, 2015

ITCZ 101 - The Holy Spirit Leads 2

In part 1 we learned that when we go into the world and deliver the Gospel we have a part to play and the Holy Spirit is doing His job as well. Now in reference to going into the world it's easy to pull up thoughts of the disciples in the New Testament going out two by two and talking to strangers in various cities.

Delivering the Gospel at every opportunity.

I also think of Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron from  Living Waters and The Way of the Master ministries, standing on their soap box on a  crowded street preaching the Gospel to everyone passing by.

Well that's not really how most of us get our opportunity to share the Gospel. Our opportunities come with friends, family, co-workers and folks we interact with for services or merchandise.

Let's make the most of our opportunities and develop our ability to create opportunities where they do not seem to exist.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Throwing the Switch

The first lessons of In The Cool Zone came through difficult encounters. As a server in a fine dining restaurant, providing impeccable service with a sincere attitude, grace, eloquence and a smile was the main function. Unfortunately, the steps of service can breakdown pretty quickly and suddenly.

I would decide that I was going to be the person I knew I was and wanted to be. That was up to me and me only. So I did it.

Every once in a while this led to an encounter with the chef that included a very harsh exchange. Both chef and server screaming at each other certainly would make for an unpleasant evening. The toughest part here was the server had to immediately go back out to the dining room with a smile on his face and a calm, cool demeanor.

Have you ever gotten so mad at someone you wanted to scream? Uh huh.

What if in the next instant you have to be sweet and empathetic? That can be a tall order... unless you have the right reasons and a bit of practice to motivate you and get you there.

There Before You Know It

The arguments with chef would come out of nowhere. Before I knew it I was in a knock down, drag out debate (about food no less. Yeesh!) and as I headed out to my guests in the dining room I had a choice to make. Do I carry part of my rage out to them or do I fix my body, fix my face and fix my attitude and return to them as a graceful and elegant individual.

Fortunately, I was able to "throw the switch." I activated my thought process. I would think about how important it was that my guests have a nice time. I would reflect on how silly it was to get that angry over food. I would decide that I was going to be the person I knew I was and wanted to be. That was up to me and me only. So I did it.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

ITCZ 101 - A Calm, Cool Demeanor 2

Emotions are our friend. They are neither good or bad when talking about intrinsic value. How we place them in our thought process will determine their value. Do our emotions lead? If they do, they are clouding our thinking. I submit to you, emotions that lead us become our enemy!

And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

Recovering Our Thinking

What can we do when our emotions get out in front? If we "throw the switch" and recover with a calm, cool and peaceful thought process the emotions are moved to a place to supplement and support our thinking.

With practice your emotions begin to emulate your core values putting a turbo on your resolve. Activate your faith in the Lord which provides a clear thinking process. Doubt clouds the mind and keeps you off balance. Take a moment to review, Faith… Updating Your Definition for quick recap.

And the work of righteousness will be peace, and the service of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever. - Isaiah 32:17 NASB

Monday, November 30, 2015

ITCZ 101 - A Calm, Cool Demeanor

Getting In The Cool Zone comes from a willingness and the practice of choosing a state of mind that is calm, cool and peaceful. This is the initial objective of In The Cool Zone and our namesake. When a situation is thrust upon us how do we respond?

The Lord of peace himself give you His peace at all times and in every situation.

A "Go-To" State Of Mind

When events begin to unfold around you and you find yourself in a stressful, frustrating or scary situation we need a mechanism and thought process that we can lean on. A true "go-to" state of mind to set us up to react appropriately and powerfully when we need it most.

Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. - Romans 12:2 KJV 

Friday, November 27, 2015

ITCZ 101 - The Holy Spirit Leads 1

In the process of preparing our mind we need to be clear about who does what in the process of salvation and growing in the Lord. Remember that we want to do the things God told us to do and just as important, we need to let God do the things He said He would do.

Delivering The Gospel

When we obey the command to go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone, that is our part. The Holy Spirit will bring the conviction. He will bring the salvation. He will bring the growth.

And He (the Holy Spirit), when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment; - John 16:8 NASB

God gives the increase.

When we deliver the Gospel, do the works He gave us to do and let the Holy Spirit do his job, we stand in faith. We are not required to convict anyone. We actually can't. That is a job for the Holy Spirit. Let Him do His job.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

ITCZ 101 - Table Of Contents

The core value of In The Cool Zone is in the techniques for putting our mind, emotions and body in a position to support our thinking so we can do the work the Lord has given us to do. That work as we define it is thinking like Jesus thinks, delivering the Gospel and teaching what we have learned. These are the same goals declared in our Vision Statement and Mission Statement.

In The Cool Zone - ITCZ 101

ITCZ 101

Table Of Contents

Preparation

In The Field

Say What Needs To Be Said

Finish Strong

Summarize What Was Learned
Apologize Quickly
It Is OK To Be Wrong
It Is OK To Be Right
It's OK To Say, "I Don't Know"

Monday, November 23, 2015

The Puzzle Analogy - Part 3

We pick up today with our continuation of the Puzzle Analogy.

Seeking The Truth

Have you ever been able to connect two puzzle pieces together and later realized they shouldn't be connected?

Oh sure! Some of the die cuts on the puzzle pieces allow for pieces that are not meant to be connected, to actually fit together. In some cases you really can't determine that two pieces do not go together until you build up the cluster. The colors match. The pattern matches. However, those pieces do not go together. The new pieces connected around the original two revealed the wrong placement.

The humble He guides in justice, and the humble He teaches His way.

In the same manner, you may connect ideas that you discover do not go together the way you originally thought they did. In many ways the ideas fit but new information revealed the wrong placement. It could even be that the idea was just wrong. That's ok. Don't panic!

Friday, November 20, 2015

The Puzzle Analogy - Part 2

Now that we have built the framework of our puzzle we are ready to deal with the pieces that are much more challenging to organize. The pieces in the center.

Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

The Unknown

When you pick up a puzzle piece and do not know where it goes, do you throw it away?

No! If you throw away the piece you can never complete the puzzle.

In the same way when you get a piece of information that is confusing, don't throw it out. All information is valuable. Simply, place that info on the table and as you get more information you will eventually be able to understand it and integrate it into the rest of your knowledge.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Puzzle Analogy - Part 1

In the article, Galvanize Your Heart, we talked about how and what we should be thinking and we focused on the priority of thinking. Getting your thought process out in front of an initial emotional shock will keep you thinking when you need it most.

Now let's discuss organizing your thinking process. I present to you "The Puzzle."

Understand what the will of the Lord is.

The process of building a puzzle is very similar to the process of organizing information. We have an overwhelming amount of information coming our way every day. From our scriptures to politics to work, dealing with family, friends, strangers, finances etc. It's a lot to take in.

How do we begin to put it into perspective?

Think about how you approach a puzzle. There are dozens if not hundreds of pieces. You have one guide which is the picture on the box cover. For our purposes, the pieces are information and the picture on the box is the truth.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Galvanize Your Heart

Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. What and how you think about life is extremely important. There is also another aspect of thinking that needs to be considered as well. That would be the priority of thinking.

Guard your heart above all else.

The scripture in Romans 12:2 NLT does not ask us to change the way we feel. We need to change the way we think. Thinking is the part of your heart that the Lord is working on. So let's put a high priority on how we think.
Pray. Think first. The emotions support and reinforce our resolve. The body gets us there and does the physical work. God is glorified.

Think Like Jesus Thinks

So what and how do we think? Have you ever noticed that when Jesus answered a question, he either asked another question back or answered the question they should have asked to find salvation? Jesus certainly did answer their question but more importantly He would first give another answer to a question they did not ask, but they should have.

The questions that were being asked Jesus came from a way of thinking that did not comprehend the ways of God. Jesus was changing the way they think through His teaching and answering questions in a way that challenged their incorrect thinking process. So take the time to put on the mind of Christ by finding out what His Word says about His way of thinking.
Humbly accept the word God has planted in your hearts, for it has the power to save your souls. - James 1:21 NLT
Throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God--truly righteous and holy. - Ephesians 4:22-24 NLT
Having trouble finding a place to start digging into the Bible and not sure where to start? Review the article, What Should I Study? You'll be putting on the Mind of Christ in no time.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Count The Cost

As a Christian we are going to get resistance. There is no way around it. We live in a violent world that is diametrically opposed to the Word of God. If the world hated Jesus, we know the world hates us. Let's get the right mind set so we do not get taken by surprise more often than we should.

Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong.
Do you remember what I told you? ‘A slave is not greater than the master.’ Since they persecuted me, naturally they will persecute you. And if they had listened to me, they would listen to you. - John 15:20 NLT
The core issue comes from walking in the manner the Lord has told us and standing up for the truth. Certainly, we are not talking about dropping "truth bombs" as is said, just to antagonize someone, but representing the truth when we may suffer consequences for doing so. This will come many times when sharing the Word of God or it may present itself in some situation that may arise.

Skill Development

As you grow in the Lord and become more skilled and effective at sharing salvation and the Word of God, attacks will undoubtedly come your way. They will range from disparaging remarks to unwarranted treatment to physical attacks. Therefore, the Lord has given us a heads up to prepare.

When we pray for wisdom, we learned in the article Praying for Wisdom... Debunked?, that trouble does not come because we asked for wisdom. We pray for wisdom because of the things that are already headed our way. In the same manner, counting the cost does not bring persecution. It prepares us for the things already in our path.

Praying for wisdom and counting the cost are principles that are proactive, just like Jesus was proactive. Grab this concept and own it.

If we want to grow in our relationship with the Lord we must count the cost of what that relationship will mean.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Prerequisites: Building Fortitude

When we ask and believe, we are in faith. We may not feel like our faith is effective if the Lord takes a while to bring things around. The good news here is He knows exactly what He is doing.

Many requests that we make we cannot bear, regardless of how bad we want them. The Lord knows this and instead of granting a request that will crush us, he builds within us the fortitude we need to take on the blessing.

Crave pure spiritual milk.

Remember that the scriptures tell us that God will not allow temptation beyond what we can bear? This is true of things we are asking for. Our Father hears your request. He is building a foundation in you to bear the very things you are asking for.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Walk By Signs or Walk By Faith?

Have you ever had an important decision to make and you just hope and pray that the Lord will give you a sign? Oh, sure. We've all been there.

As new Christians we have a tendency to initially seek a relationship with the Lord where we desire for Him to make decisions for us rather than understand God's ways and walk in them. Let's change our mind and seek to understand God's ways and make them our own.

Faith Killer

Seeking a sign takes us out of faith. Take a quick look at the definition of faith in the article, Faith… Updating Your Definition. The act of faith is to know the character of God, put our trust in Him and take action.

So let's keep our focus on the things He gave us to do (How Do I Serve God?). Our Father has tasked us to pray, gather information, make a decision and continue in prayer. At the same time we let the Lord do what He said He would do. He does the miracle (Let God do His Part).

And we know all things work together for good to those who love God, to those called according to His purpose.

We do not want to put ourselves in a position of being a drone and seek the Lord to make decisions for us. Clearly this is not a relationship of love.

The Lord has set us free. We have liberty. We have a loving Father and we have the God given faculty to make decisions. Let's do it with confidence in Him.
For we walk by faith, not by sight. - 2 Corinthians 5:7 NKJV

Friday, November 6, 2015

Can't Decide? God Expects You To

Walking in the Spirit isn't about the specific decisions you need to make. It's about acknowledging the Lord. Our Father understands that you have to make decisions through the course of your day. He wants you to make those decisions with confidence.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. - Proverbs 3:6 NKJV

In all your ways acknowledge Him.

With every decision you have to make there is information to base that decision on. God wants us to make good decisions based on His wisdom and council and He has armed us with the faculties to do so.

We are not robots and we don't want to be robots. Nor, does our Father. We are alive to Christ and He wants you to put Him first and learn to think like He thinks.
The LORD says, "I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you. Do not be like a senseless horse or mule that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control." - Psalms 32:8-9 NLT
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. - Romans 12:2 NLT
The key is not the decisions you make but your process for making decisions.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Faith… Updating Your Definition

Imagine a friend. Now imagine that you and your new friend are tasked with saving the world. The way you do this is you each have a button to push. Both buttons must be pressed within 3 seconds of each other and within a close proximity, once a day.

What if you fail to depress the buttons within the time given? You both suffer a painful death and so does the rest of the world.

The first day is going to be unnerving to say the least. With a 3 second window you want to be precise. The consequences are real. You and your friend get together and decided to go on 3. 1, 2, 3, press! You just saved the world.

Little Faith

It didn't take much faith to believe your friend would press his button. He was as invested as much as you were and he was standing right in front of you. You were able to communicate as well as acknowledge each other.

Our Father is faithful. Have faith.

20 Years Pass

Now fast forward. You've been successful for 20 years coming together and pressing the button and saving the world over and over. Each of you going to work, living your lives and yet always able to connect and press the button. Even when one of you was stuck in traffic, got a flat tire, held up in countless different ways, you were still able to connect.

Over this time you and your friend were able to build faith in each other through a relationship where together, you overcame obstacles and challenges that seemed impossible and that were most likely quite scary.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Study Like You Have To Teach It

In the article, How Do I Serve God?, we began to lay our foundation in the Lord with prayer, reading and connecting with other Christians. We then answered the question, What Should I Study? Now that we have discovered what to study, let's learn an important approach to study.

Study like you have to teach it.

Study like you have to teach it.

As followers of our beloved Father we know we are new creatures created in Christ Jesus and our primary goal is to know Him. To become like Him. As we do this we are building ourselves up in the Lord. We are on the right track!

We are also tasked with building up our brothers and sisters in the Lord so that they can know Him as well.  So let's keep them in mind as we dig in and learn. Thoughtfully develop your own style and prepare to dispense your knowledge and wisdom at every opportunity. It takes time to develop effective teaching skills so integrate this approach early on.
You have heard me teach things that have been confirmed by many reliable witnesses. Now teach these truths to other trustworthy people who will be able to pass them on to others. - 2 Timothy 2:2 NLT

Friday, October 30, 2015

Curiosity… The Hijacked Virtue

We have lost something.

It was something we had but it has been taken from us. When we were very young and the world was new to us we craved knowledge. We wanted to know everything. Not only did we want to experience the world we wanted to become experts at it.

However, our culture is designed to drive curiosity from us. We have been shamed, intimidated, frightened and physically exhausted into mental submission. Even though we may still learn. We are not thinking. We are slaves to our culture. We are not curious.

Take back your curiosity!

Take your curiosity back!

As a society we have become mediocre in in the mind. We have lost our fortitude for curiosity, creativity, innovation, adventure and discovery. We did not just get old. We did not just get comfortable. We have given our minds over to this world.
With the Lord's authority I say this: Live no longer as the Gentiles do, for they are hopelessly confused. Their minds are full of darkness; they wander far from the life God gives because they have closed their minds and hardened their hearts against him. They have no sense of shame. They live for lustful pleasure and eagerly practice every kind of impurity.
- Ephesians 4:17-19 NLT

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

What Should I Study?

Have you ever asked, "What should I study in the bible?"

Getting started is generally our biggest challenge. It doesn't take too long to discover that there is a vast landscape of topics to dig into. In fact, the more you learn, the more you will realize how much you don't know. So where to begin?

Solution

What is interesting about God and His Word to you? That's what you study!

Is it faith? Is it prayer? Is it God's plan? Maybe it's creation or prophecy in the scriptures.

The best place to start is the very thing that is on your mind. Revive your curiosity about the Lord and run with it.

Cry out for insight and ask for understanding.

~~~~~~~

Monday, October 26, 2015

God Hears You

God hears you. He is with us constantly. Yet somehow when we talk with Him we can get the sense that He doesn't hear us. Most of this is because we don't see Him nodding back at us saying, "Oh yea, sure I hear you. I'm on it."

Have you ever had the sense that you didn't ask the right thing? or ask the right way? or use the right scripture? This may be because you didn't get a typical acknowledgement.

Most of the time when we make our requests we know God's Word concerning our situation or we can quickly look it up. Then we make our prayer but never get the instant satisfaction of acknowledgement. At least not in the ways we are accustom to be acknowledged.

Our Father hears us.

With a friend we get the reassuring, "Ok" or "I heard that" or "I'm with you." It's kind of annoying if they don't let you know they heard you. With the Lord we merely have his Word.

Merely? Ha! Well His Word is better than a hearty, "You betcha!" So let's think like Jesus thinks and recognize that His Word is more sure than a "you betcha!"

God's Word is His acknowledgement! Can you hear Him? :-)

Friday, October 23, 2015

Praying for Wisdom... Debunked?

Wisdom is an important concept to thinking like Jesus thinks. Praying for wisdom has been taught in a way that creates problems and encourages doubt.

Let's fix this one! :-)

The Dilemma

Should we pray for wisdom? Oh yea sure you betcha! On the subject of praying for wisdom the scriptures encourage us to ask our Father for wisdom and He will give it to us generously.

Ask God for wisdom and He will give it to us generously.

Then follows the warning:
"Be careful when you pray to the Lord for wisdom. Look out! There are going to be problems coming your way. If you want the wisdom, you are inviting a storm and will get hammered so you'll really understand."

Recovering Our Faith

Our Father most certainly did not ask us to pray for wisdom so he could pound us into dust and we would have to learn the hard way. He told us to pray for wisdom so the Holy Spirit could provide the solution to problems we both have now and for the challenges that lie ahead of us.


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Prayer by Design

Can you pray? Yep! Do you have time? You have all that there is!

Make a Prayer List

Write it down! It's just as natural to read your list to the Lord as it is to pray from the hip. The added bonus is you can nail the scriptures and remember everything you wanted to pray about. When your prayers are organized and it's all in front of you it makes for an energetic and efficient experience.

Can it feel robotic. Yea, a little... at first. However, your approach is one of sincerity and the Lord knows what you are doing.

Start with one scripture if that's all you have. If you woke up every morning and prayed, "Lord, Rob is telling me to pray something everyday. So I acknowledge you and remind you that Jesus wept," then you are off to a great start! :-) Start small and work your way up to the big stuff.

Be patient. Keep praying.

Strategizing

When you are consistent with a small prayer list it will begin to grow all on it's own. What is the need right now? Write it down. Find a scripture or two to go with it. Boom! You're in the game!

Write out your ongoing prayers just like you pray it.

No need to quote the chapter and verse reference to God. Giving references is great for study but this is a conversation. You know the Word. God knows the Word. Just talk to Him. He hears you.

Schedule a reminder to do a monthly review of your prayer list. Take this time to reorder and organize your list so it flows like you want it to.

Time it! Find out how long it takes to get through your prayer list. Note your list at the 5 minute mark, 15 minute mark, 30 minutes, an hour? Sure! This will let you get the high priority stuff in when you have a busy day. If you have only 5 minutes now due to time constraints you know exactly what you can get in. Picking up later for the rest will be easy as pie!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Prayer... Life on Turbo Setting

We cannot see the spiritual world that is pulled down around us but you must engage it. It is engaging us and if we do not participate it's like being tied to a chair for a boxing match. Does that sound bad to you? Uh, huh!

God is always working and your opportunity to get in on it with Him is through your prayer.

The Spirit World

The Spirit world has a very malevolent aspect to it that must be engaged and decimated. Does that scare you a little bit? Well it should if you are not engaging. We approach God in prayer because we love Him and He has told us to. It is a chance to connect with Him and also accomplish His purposes.

The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.

The benefit is that we get to know Him and become more like Him. We get to participate in His plan. We get to stand up for ourselves, our family and friends and others in ways that we otherwise can do nothing. It is the only way to walk in the Spirit. Jesus engaged the invisible God and the invisible enemy at every opportunity.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Let God Do His Part

[continued from How Do I Serve God?]
When we take ownership of our responsibilities and act on God's Word, the Lord takes on a responsibility in this process. He has made promises that He will unfailingly accomplish on our behalf.

Perspective

Do the things God told you to do and let Him do the things He said He would do.

The second part can actually be more difficult than the first. Once we identify our tasks we can put them into perspective and get them done. The second part instructs us to go "hands off" and that can be scary when our faith has not been developed.

Do the things God told you to do and let Him do the things He said He would do.

Let God do the things He said he would do

When we bring our prayers, supplications and requests to our Father we are giving those things over to Him. Right on! Just like He has told us to do. Now let's trust Him.

Example to Illustrate

God has tasked us with working. When we need a job we give it up to the Lord in prayer and then we take the follow-up steps of faith.

  1. Prepare our resume.
  2. Get a haircut.
  3. Press our suit.
  4. Make our contacts.
  5. Worry incessantly. What? Wait! Whoa!
The first four steps are true acts of faith. While we are taking these steps of faith we should be fully persuaded that our Father is doing His part. In this example, His part is getting you the job. You most likely weren't praying to get a great haircut. You prayed for a job. You weren't praying to get your suit pressed. You prayed for a job.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

How Do I Serve God?

Here is a statement I get from Christians who have struggled to grasp what exactly God is asking them to do:
"I don't feel like I'm doing what God wants me to do. I would do what He wants but I just don't know what He wants me to do."
~~~~~~~

The Solution

"Do the things God told you to do & let Him do the things He said He would do."

Both concepts are extremely important. Often Believers struggle with these ideas and we fail to grasp where our responsibilities lie and where the Lord's responsibilities lie. Let's focus on the first half of the statement. We'll cover the last half in Friday's post. 

Do The Things God Told You To Do

The Lord has given us many responsibilities.  However, we need to grow into them. Getting to know our Father is how we do that. So let's start with the easy stuff and get that nailed down. Then we will continue growing in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. - 2 Peter 3:18

Do the things God told you to do and let him do the things He said He would do.

Focus on the foundational tasks:
  • Read your bible.
  • Pray.
  • Talk to other Christians.

This is all doable. Even with our crazy schedules!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Are You Disciplined?

The Answer May Surprise You.

When we believe in Jesus and we take him as our Lord, the scriptures indicate that we become something new and different from what we were before.

The challenge is that we have several years, if not decades, of our old self competing with what may be just a few years of our new self in Christ. What chance does the mind of a 2 year old have against the mind of a 28 year old? How about 38 years? 48 anyone? :-)

Note that even if you are new to the scriptures we have the Holy Spirit residing within us now. We have access to the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. So we don't need to out smart our old self. We do however need to put laser focus on our new abilities.

One Step At A Time

So let's answer the question. Are you Disciplined?

The scriptures say you have discipline.


Friday, October 9, 2015

You Must Seize This One Reality!


"You are a new creation."



Trite? 

It shouldn't be. It cannot be!

You are not the person that you think you are. Dig deeper. You are not the person that you once were. When you were born from heaven you became something new. You are now something else and to understand who and what you are you must learn what God's Word says about you, then seize it!

If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

I Don't Know What To Do for God

It is common for Christians to be excited about their faith and desire to serve and please the Lord. However, for most, it isn't exactly clear WHAT God is asking them to do. To discover the solution we need to begin to line our perspective up with God's perspective.
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts. - Isaiah 55:8-9 NASB

The Dilemma

"I would do what God wants me to do but I just don't know what He wants!"

"What does God want me to do?"

This is a fair question. It's the right question! We also want to be sure we don't get down the road 20 years and still be asking it. So let's get it answered by getting our perspective in line with the Lord.

The Solution

Find out what God is doing, then you will discover what you are supposed to do.

Find out what God is doing, then you will discover what you are supposed to do.

Monday, October 5, 2015

How Can I Be Saved?

When we were born into this world we came with a serious defect. That defect is called sin. Sin is in our flesh and we also experience it when we transgress God's law. It is the sole reason we are separated from God.

Are you a good person? Well let's see.

  • Have you ever told a lie? 
  • Have you ever stolen something, even if it is something small?
  • Have you ever used the Lord's name in vain? 
  • Have you ever looked upon someone with lust? Jesus said, "anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart." 

Are you guilty?

Well we all have transgressed these laws and these are only four of the Ten Commandments. It is clear that we are sinners and we desperately need a solution to this problem of being separated from God.

The God of the universe is a Holy God. He is perfect in every way. The barrier between you and Him is your sin. To come before God you need to be perfect. There can be no exceptions.

So how then does one come to God?

There is only one way to get to God. Someone needs to pay the price for sin. There must be justice, a reconciliation. Then you can have peace with God and come before Him without guilt.

There is one person who has accomplished this. He is Jesus the Christ. He was perfect and he loved us so much he gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone. He gave his life to free us from every kind of sin, to cleanse us, and to make us his very own people, totally committed to doing good deeds.

Therefore, choose God! He has made a way for you!

I will give you rest.

Friday, October 2, 2015

What is In The Cool Zone? Part 3

In Part 1 and Part 2 of our introduction to In The Cool Zone we presented what it means to be in the cool zone. We practice techniques that let us think in stressful or uncomfortable situations. This will minimize unwanted reactions and sets us up to use our mind. Now, let us talk about what our goals are once we get there.

Three Complementary Goals

  1. Think like Jesus thinks.
  2. Deliver the Gospel.
  3. Teach what you have learned.
This work does not come naturally or without effort. However, I want each of you to know that you can do these things. Many may already be sharing the Gospel and teaching. Let's continue to build on the foundation we have and increase our effectiveness for the Kingdom of God.

We encourage you to do so even more.

~~~~~~~

Think Like Jesus Thinks

Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. - Rom 12:2 NLT

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

What is In The Cool Zone? Part 2

Getting "in the cool zone" is not only about how one thinks about information. It is also about training yourself to take control of your emotions and your body to enable you to maintain your thought process. 

The techniques shared here help position your emotions and body for success. They get in your way more often than you might think! What we focus on here will allow you to absorb what is coming at you while keeping your thoughts clear, staying cool and continuing to use your mind. 
"Is it possible we don't talk about the Lord more often in public because we might get push back?"
Life is moving quickly and we often find ourselves in stressful situations. Sometimes these situations can come as a surprise and throw us off. Other times we know we are headed into the fire. 

Since we know this is the case let's take some time to ready ourselves so we can be the person we know we can be and certainly the person the Lord intended us to be. 


Train yourself to be godly.

What are the awkward settings that one might find themselves in?

  • A disagreement with a friend a boss or others.
  • Simple misunderstandings.
  • Having your beliefs challenged.
  • Accusations against your character.
  • Sharing the Gospel.
  • Sharing or debating philosophical ideas.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Prepare Your Mind

Monday, September 28, 2015

What is In The Cool Zone? Part 1

When it comes to one's belief system and developing your core values, being In The Cool Zone is about managing the information you receive and processing it with a thoughtful, peaceful mindset. The goal is to come to "the truth." As followers of Christ we understand that knowing and adhering to the truth is of paramount importance. Therefore, it is helpful to develop a sound thinking process.

Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.

When do we need to manage information?

  • Reading and studying the Bible.
  • When challenged with unfamiliar ideas and philosophies.
  • It is an essential part of being "open minded."
  • Exercising the skill and ability to receive new information and not dismiss it before evaluating and attempting to understanding its value.
  • Following and understand current events.
  • Hearing another's point of view or opinion on a subject.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Mission Statement

The mission is to equip people with the spiritual information that they need most to provide them the best opportunity to make good life decisions, understand God's plan for them and live a peaceful, productive life in the Lord.

The Mission.

Don't act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.
~~~~~~~

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Vision Statement

Delivering the Gospel at every opportunity and wisely creating opportunities where they are not readily apparent while teaching and developing fortitude in new and inexperienced Christians.

In The Cool Zone Vision Statement.

Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days.
- Ephesians 5:16 NLT

But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you.
- 2 Timothy 4:5 NLT

~~~~~~~