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Sky Links, 6-20-14

Photo: Spacebridge by longobord CC 2.0
God Calls You To Jump Off, When You Are Riding High, For A New Beginning 

Bill Yount wrote about, how stepping down from a ministry role when God says to, is like getting off the bull at a rodeo, after the eight seconds.  The dismount is going to hurt, but God will heal us; and staying on longer may be deadly.

Bill wrote:
In a vision, I was riding a rodeo bull. I knew in the Spirit that this bull represented my
favorite area of ministry. To my surprise, I had ridden “eight” seconds on the bull. I was given great honor and recognition by the crowd in the grandstands. The crowd was cheering and applauding what I had accomplished, and how my ministry had touched their lives.
But then something terrible happened–I couldn’t let go of the rope! My fingers somehow got stuck around the rope, and the bull that I had overcome began to throw me uncontrollably! I just could not let go (in rodeo terms this is called a “hang-up”). I must confess that I honestly wasn’t sure if I wanted to let go because of the thrill of the ride and the applause of the many people watching me and standing on their feet giving me a standing ovation.
Bill Yount: My ‘Eight’ Seconds Of Glory On A Rodeo Bull–A Word To A New Breed Of Champions!

Gifted Ministers Need To Be Jesus' Disciples

Worship leader Dave Foster wrote about how worship leaders need discipleship and character development.  God is after something deeper than mobilizing a gift in and through you.  God is also after more than you just learning to keep clean.

Dave wrote:
Over time, God has made it apparent to me that He was using the years of my life differently than I thought He would. He wanted me to learn to submit my hopes and aspirations to Him. He wanted me to be faithful in the small things. He wanted me to learn to follow and trust. He wanted me to become a worshiper who makes it to the finish line. God called me to abide with Him, recognize His voice and do as He says. He called me to be Jesus’ disciple with His character.
Dave Foster: You play Who You Are 

"What Would You Do if Money Was No Object?", is The Wrong Question

This question, although well intentioned is actually the wrong question.  The problem is that your thing might be totally selfish in that your wife or husband is not on board with it and it might not be good for your kids.

Andrew Hamilton wrote about this:
I think the question has the potential to imply that we are sole entities who function as
individuals and it doesn’t pay attention to the wider communal impact of our actions. If we genuinely value one another then we don’t simply ‘follow our dreams’ wherever that leads because we consider how it impacts others. 
So I am pondering a better question. It needs to be one that doesn’t restrict dreaming and one that helps a person’s imagination fire up, but I wonder if the $ question is the wrong way to hit it?…
Andrew Hamilton: The Wrong Question 

The Renewing of Your Mind - Take Another Thought

Doug Addison wrote about, How To Transform Your Mind:
Did you know that it’s harder to keep asking yourself to not think a thought, but it is easier to give yourself something good to think about instead? It is actually hard to focus
on not doing something, but easier to focus on taking a positive action. When we grasp this, we are no longer struggling and beating ourselves up for thinking and doing things that are not good for us.
Renewing your mind and developing godly character involves more than trying to avoid sin or bad habits. If you continually focus on what you are not supposed to do, or on the negative thoughts and behaviors, then that is all you will be thinking about all the time. Eventually you will feel guilty for not being able to change. In the New Testament, Peter instructs us to set the focus of our minds on the positive things that are coming as opposed to negative thoughts.

Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. (1 Peter 1:13)
These are my notes on what, "take another thought", means:
If you are vexed with negative thoughts, take another thought. This is what I've heard Graham Cooke say. Take a bigger, more true, more positive thought... I'm thinking it's scripture-based, and send that thought down the path at the negative thoughts like a bowling ball down the lane at the pins.

I don't know what the consensus is in the psychological community, but what I've been told is that you cannot erase "bad" thoughts. You can only think new thoughts or restructure your thinking, so as to get a better perspective on negative thoughts, thereby diminishing or eliminating their power.
If you want to drill down deeper, on the issue of building new thought highways in your mind, I would highly recommend Arthur Burke's CD album of teaching and exercises, PTSD Restoring Dignity and Hope.  Check it out and order it here.


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The Two Disciples and The Two Donkeys

When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task.  He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me.  If anybody says anything to you, say that the Lord needs it.” He sent them off right away.  Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said,  Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring.”  The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them.  They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.
-Matthew 21:1-7

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Teaching vs. Indoctrination

As usual, Paul went to the synagogue, and on three Sabbath days reasoned with them from the Scriptures.
-Acts 17:2

There is a difference between teaching and indoctrination.  Education is not indoctrination.  But some secular and christian education is indoctrination masquerading as education.

If you are a teacher, whether you homeschool your children, teach at the pro level or you teach in your church; it is good to know this difference between indoctrination and true teaching.  Many people are indoctrinated today, rather than taught.

What you might notice, is that when you preach, whether you preach to a crowd or a few, it is easy to be an indoctrinator rather than a true teacher.  True teachers ask people questions and expect them to challenge and debate them.


Sharing ideas and conceptsTeaching is absorbed and integrated into one's own lifeConcepts or ideas are questioned and debatedMaterial is reflected uponStudents summarize back what's being learnedStudents thin…

God's Secret, Hidden People

(The children) of Elam 1,254.  -Ezra 2:7

Do you feel hidden?

The name Elam means secret or hidden.  Do you feel like you are on the shelf, not being used by God?  Maybe you are part of God's secret agents.

God has people who are in secret.

I have this idea that God has His attention on secret people.   I believe that God has rewards for secret people coming.  You may feel on the shelf, but you are actually hidden for a special purpose.  God has you in reserve.

The number one thousand, two-hundred, and fifty-four; tells us God's plan for his hidden, secret, and in reserve children

One thousand speaks of recompense.

Recompense means that you will be compensated or made amends to, due to harm or loss you suffered. In Genesis 20:16 is the story of Abimelech recompensing Abraham and Sarah.

Two speaks of fellowship, partnership, and co-laboring (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

There are hidden people who have felt like they are "going it alone", who are about to be joined by someone.  …