THE BEST REST

I find myself currently entrenched in one of the busiest seasons I have ever encountered in my life.  Our business has been very blessed lately and right now I am working very hard to keep up with the blessing that God has been pouring out to us.  Thank you Lord!!    Here is what I have noticed during this season: I don’t have time to be depressed!  I have battled with seasons of depression throughout much of my life but when I think about the last 60-90 days in which I have been working extremely hard, I have not been depressed at all.  To experience depression would require that I have reasonable amounts of time to ponder and dwell on what I feel about myself.  It would require that I spend chunks of time thinking about me.  I have considered during many of those seasons of depression that the very “essence” of depression seems to be very “self-centered”.  During the last 60-90 days I have simply not had enough time in the day to even consider how I feel about self.  My time has been spent in pursuit of my daily disciplines of being a man:  exercise, reading the Word, providing for family, etc….There has been no extra time for anything else.

As I think about how positive I have felt about life over this extremely busy season, I am reminded of the mandate that God gave to Adam.  What did God tell Adam to do as soon as He created him and placed him in the Garden?  He told him to GET TO WORK!!  He said “Be Fruitful and Multiply”.  He told him to “fill the earth and subdue it”.  Man was created to be productive.  He was created to be in a constant state of productivity and growth as a being.  He was created to prosper and multiply everything that he put his hands to.  He was created to work and be fruitful.  Of course, I am not saying this is his highest calling.  His highest calling is to love and worship the Lord.  What I am saying is that it is impossible for man to be fulfilled and energized if he is not doing what he was created to do!   As I have reflected upon many of my seasons of depression in my past, I have learned that many of them were caused by this one thing; I wasn’t working hard enough.  I wasn’t being fruitful.  I wasn’t pursuing excellence my life.  I wasn’t fulfilling the mandate, and in the depths of my heart, I knew it!  Much of my depression was caused by guilt from not being the man I was created to be!  One of the greatest realizations thus far in my walk with God is this:  I drastically underestimated the amount of work required to be the man that God has called me to be.  I simply don’t have enough time to spend 4-5 hours every week on the golf course.  I don’t have enough time to spend hours every night in front of a television, playing video games, or browsing facebook.  There isn’t time to waste!  There isn’t time to waste if I am in pursuit of excellence.  There isn’t time to waste if I am going to provide well for my family.  There isn’t time to waste if I am going to be in pursuit of God.  There isn’t time to waste if I am going to be physically fit.  There isn’t time to waste if I am going to pursue my wife.  There isn’t time to waste if I am going to pour into my children while they are still young.

So here is my encouragement to you today:  Rise up from your slumber and be the man or woman you were created to be.  Be more productive and you won’t have time for depression.   Rid yourself of the distractions of this world.  Get up from the ground, dust yourself off, and go forth in victory.  We were created to conquer!  He said to SUBDUE the ground we walk on!  We were created to be victorious.  It is okay to fall, but now is the time to rise. Make a decision today that everything you put your hands to will prosper and be fruitful because that is the divine command!  God will give you the strength and grace so that you do not grow weary, and of course, He has also mandated rest!   But know this: There is no greater rest than laying your head on the pillow at night knowing that you gave that day absolutely everything you had.  There is no greater rest than knowing that you labored and toiled in the pursuit of excellence.  Consider the words of the great Vince Lombardi…

I firmly believe that any man’s finest hour, the greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear, is that moment when he has worked his heart out in a good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle – victorious.
Vince Lombardi

OTHER RECENT POSTS BY MIKE:

RIPPLE EFFECTS

BE ON THE ALERT

MUD PIE

A Powerful Thought

“Mind is the Master power that moulds and makes,

And Man is Mind, and evermore he takes

The tool of Thought, and, shaping what he wills,

Brings forth a thousand joys, a thousand ills:

He thinks in secret, and it comes to pass:

Environment is but his looking glass.”

  As a Man Thinketh, by James Allen

                I believe that most of us have drastically underestimated the power of our thought life.  We have failed to realize the power that was given to us by our Creator.  He gave us a mind, and he endowed that mind with great power.  We have been made in the image of God and one of the divine attributes is the ability to mold and shape our lives by the thoughts we think.  All great and terrible things created by men on this earth began with a simple thought.  Do you want to have a better life?  Think better thoughts.  Think thoughts that are powerful and strong and courageous.  Think thoughts of faith and belief.  God has much to say on the subject in His word.  Here are just a few verses to consider…

Romans 12:2 states that we are to “be transformed by the renewing of our mind”

Proverbs 23:7 states that “as a man thinketh in his heart, so is he”

Hebrews 11:15 is one of my favorite verses that gives direct proof that thought creates opportunity.  It states…”And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return”

Philippians 3:13 states “….but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

Mathew8:13—Our Lord states… “Go; it shall be done for you as you have believed

Most recently I have realized even more than ever that the predominant attack of Satan in our life is an attack against our minds.  He wants us to buy into the philosophies of this world and its system.  He wants us to think small!  He wants us to think thoughts of fear and doubt.   Here are 5 lessons that Satan is currently teaching.  They deal with belief systems and our thinking!!  This is just a short list of the first 5 that came to my mind!

1. Debt is o.k. —The god of this world is teaching that it is not realistic to live a debt free life in our culture.  God does not issue commands arbitrarily.  The reason he calls us to a debt free life is because debt is slavery.  Man cannot serve two masters. The sooner one comes to the realization of this, the better.

2.  A little bit of lust is acceptable—the god of this world is teaching us, and men especially, that there is a level of sexual immorality that is “acceptable” for our culture.  The word clearly states that there is not to be even a hint of sexual immorality among us.  Ephesians 5:3

3.  Lack is a sign of spirituality—the god of this world is teaching Christians that to have less than enough is a sign of being more spiritual.  He is teaching that poverty and lack equates to a more devout walk with God.

4. Wealth and possessions are evil –The god of this world is teaching Christians that they are less spiritual if they have material wealth and possessions.  He is teaching that God does not desire to prosper His people.   God has really been working on me personally in this area.  This belief system leads us to not enjoy what God has given to us.  How would you feel if your son or daughter felt guilty about the gifts you gave them?  Would you give them more?

5. You can figure it out – The god of this world is teaching that you can figure the different areas of your life out on your own, without counsel.  God says very differently.  If you want victory in an area of your life…get counsel in that area!  If you want to break out of debt and have more than enough you should see a good Christian financial counselor.  Do you want to achieve physical fitness?  Hire a trainer.  Do you want a better marriage?  Go see a marriage counselor.  Do you want to grow your business? Hire a coach or consultant.   Hosea 4:6 states… “My people perish for lack of knowledge” and Proverbs 11:14 states… “Where there is no guidance the people fall, but in abundance of counselors there is victory”

The key to living a more abundant life and becoming more Christ-like is found in the pursuit of wisdom and changing our thinking.  The Word is clear on this!  Do not underestimate the power of your thoughts.  The circumstances you find yourself in today are the results of the thoughts you were thinking yesterday!  Change your thoughts and change your life!!!  Consider a few of these great quotes from one of my favorite books on the power of thought… “As a Man Thinketh” by James Allen…

“Man is a growth by law, and not a creation by artifice, and cause and effect is as absolute and undeviating in the hidden realm of thought as in the world of visible and material things”

“The vision that you glorify in your mind, the Ideal that you enthrone in your heart—this you will build your life by, this you will become.”

“To put away aimlessness and weakness, and to begin to think with purpose, is to enter the ranks of those strong ones who only  recognize failure as one of the pathways to attainment; who make all conditions serve them, and who think strongly, attempt fearlessly, and accomplish masterfully.  Having conceived of his purpose, a man should mentally mark out a straight pathway to its achievement, looking neither to the right nor the left.  Doubts and fears should be rigorously excluded; they are disintegrating elements which break up the straight line of effort, rendering it crooked, ineffectual, useless.  Thoughts of doubt and fear never accomplished anything, and never can.  They always lead to failure.  Purpose, energy, power to do, and all strong thoughts cease when doubt and fear creep in”

So…how do we think powerful thoughts?  Pour them in!  Pour Gods Word in!  Pour books in!  Pour podcasts in!  We must be continually pouring Gods principles and teaching into our hearts.  Pour, Pour, Pour!!  You will reap what you sow.  If you sow no wisdom in, you will live a life of poverty, doubt, and fear.  Sow powerful thoughts into your mind and you will live a powerful life.  This is a spiritual law!

Other recent posts by Mike Mazyck…

Why we fail to enter the presence of God

                      Part 1– A Serious Matter

                      Part 2- My Pants are Snug

                      Part 3- Mud Pie