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This sponge’s problem is not that it’s out of water.

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Sponges absorb & express.  That’s what they do.  When you put it on or in liquid, it sucks it up and spits it out when there is too much pressure or it just drips it out when there is too much liquid.

I don’t buy into these excuses when it comes to watching or reading anything with mild or explicit sexual content…

“It’s just a movie/song/show/etc…”

“it’s just one time”

“It’s not that big of a deal”

What you absorb through the sponge of your heart is going to drip out and express itself somewhere.

Proverbs 6:27-29Living Bible (TLB)

27 Can a man hold fire against his chest and not be burned? 28 Can he walk on hot coals and not blister his feet? 29 So it is with the man who commits adultery with another’s wife. He shall not go unpunished for this sin.

We can’t lie to ourselves.  What comes in our minds & hearts is going to come out at some point.  If I allow what comes out to be more hurtful than helpful and I do nothing about it, I create a habit that fuels the fire that is consuming my life.

A good question to ask is, “WHAT COMES OUT WHEN THE PRESSURE IS OUT?”  What “comes out” when I get angry?  What “comes out” when I get worried?  What “comes out” when I get that itch that needs to be satisfied?  Having the “feeling” is just as much sin as acting on that feeling.  The sponge of our heart expresses SIN, not because we are absorbing it externally but because we produce it naturally internally.  The amazing part is not that Jesus CAN help us but that He actually WANTS to help us.

Before there was commercials of colorful bears complaining about the quality of the toilet paper, people used “other” means of cleanliness.  The Romans used to use sponges attached to sticks that helped them wipe away their feces.  The also dipped the sponges in a vinegar solution to sanitize it.  A Roman soldier happened to take a nearby sponge, dip it into a vinegar solution, and gave it to Jesus as he hung on the cross because he said he was thirsty.

Could that sponge be the kind of sponges that the Romans used for toilet paper?

If it was, it paints a perfect picture of Jesus taking all of our CRAP on the cross.  Unlike drinking from that dirty sponge, Jesus did absorb the full punishment of our sins and for the past 2,000 years has been EXPRESSING love, forgiveness, and salvation to all who believe.

I choose not to allow unchecked SIN or immorality in my life, not so I won’t CAUGHT but because I’ve been BOUGHT by the blood of Jesus.  No one time fling can ever compare to the eternal LIFE that I have now.  I love Him more.

What are other warning signs that we might EXPRESS externally that hint to the fact that something must be wrong internally?

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Adultery doesn’t begin in the bed…

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Have you ever tried to wash your car and as you make your way to the other side the water stops?  The hose either kinks, folders over, or gets caught under the tire of the car.  Then theres you yanking and whipping the hose to see if it fixes itself before walking all the way over the the problem.

In this situation, would it be right for me to get upset at the faucet or the water company?  Those are not the source of my problem.  The kink is.  Jesus makes a similar comparison when it comes to sex & adultery.

In Matthew 5:27-31, Jesus makes a recommendation to mutilate one self if you have issues with what you do with your hands and what you watch with your eyes.  Are the eyes the problem?  If I have a problem watching porn and you take away my sight, do you think my porn addiction is solved?  Answer, NO.  Why?  Imagination.

What about my hands?  If I can’t control what I touch and what I do with my hands, especially when it comes to finding sexual satisfaction, do you think my problems are solved if you chop both of my hands off?  I’m pretty sure I can get creative with two nubs at the end of my arms.  The eyes and hands are not the problem.  The kink is somewhere else.

Jesus was saying that we have to find the kink and fix the problem at the source.  The bottom line is that sexual sins and adultery don’t begin in the bed, they start in the heart.  Jesus is the only one that can cut that deep and untangle the mess that is sin.  From there though, we are responsible to CUT THE CRAP from our lives and make sure the kink doesn’t come back.

GIRL:  Guard your ears and be careful not to be seduced by slick lines and don’t believe sick lies that you are not special, beautiful, or worthy of being loved.

GUYS:  Bounce your eyes and look away from anything that might spark your imagination.  Look to girls as people and not potential.

Allow Jesus to do what He does best and untangle the KINK of SIN in your heart and in the end, you’ll be sleeping better at night.

There are many other great tips to help guys and girls protect their hearts from SIN and keep them from getting “Kinky” (see what I did?).  How else can guys and girls maintain their purity or reset it?

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The ONE thing that can give you fulfillment TODAY no matter what you do for a living.

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Today, February 24th is my 32nd birthday.

I’m going to have a GREAT time with my amazing wife, who loves to spoil me by the way, my incredible kids, and my wonderful family.  Even though I’m going to eat way more than I should, I want to do something different on my birthday…

Instead of GETTING gifts for my birthday, I want to GIVE YOU a gift, a FREE eBook I wrote.  I hope the application makes a difference in your life the way it has impacted my own.

CLICK BELOW FOR THE BOOK

Finding Fulfillment eBook

Please feel free to drop a comment as a birthday gift.  Or even better, answer this question…

WHAT ARE WAYS THAT YOU EXPERIENCE FULFILLMENT IN YOUR LIFE?

I’ll look forward to reading and responding soon.

God bless you!

TITO

Success

The Secret To Defining & Discovering Success

PSALMS 90:12-17

12 Teach us to realize the brevity of life,
    so that we may grow in wisdom.

13 Lord, come back to us!
    How long will you delay?
    Take pity on your servants!

14 Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love,
    so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives.

15 Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery!
    Replace the evil years with good.

16 Let us, your servants, see you work again;
    let our children see your glory.

17 And may the Lord our God show us his approval
    and make our efforts successful.
    Yes, make our efforts successful!

Do you know anyone who doesn’t want to succeed in life?  Most of us have dreamed since we were little kids of doing remarkable things.  The older we get, the more our reality, circumstances, society, and ourselves get us to go to sleep without ever taking action on those dreams.  If they seem to far out of reach, we retract into ourselves instead of reaching out for something greater.  Other pursue their dreams with reckless abandonment, only to find out that the dream they thought would bring them fulfillment turned out to be a nightmare that left them asking the question, “What’s next?”.

Define success right now!  Don’t use the world’s playbook.  All David wanted was to be close to God and for his family and friends to know how amazing God is too.  A successful life is found when one enjoys a relationship with JESUS and seeks to add value to the life of others in hope that they may know that joy too.  For many of us, defining success is not the problem, it’s doing something to achieve that success.  Let me encourage you with this if you feel like there is NO TIME to do anything worth while.

MAKE YOUR DOWN TIME COUNT BEFORE YOUR TIME IS UP & CREATE IN THE CRACKS

  • Start create great content on social media that blesses others instead of just consuming content.
  • Listen to a good audio book on your way to and from work instead of whatever is on the radio.
  • Eat dinner as a family or with great friends and share life together.
  • Read your kids a bedtime story & pray with them
  • Get up 30 minutes earlier and write.  You could finish a book in 6 months if you wrote 500 words a day, 5 days a week!

Finally, if you want to discover success, believe in Christ, accept his forgiveness for your sins, and give JESUS some space in your heart, mind, thoughts, and attention.   If you do, He will do more than just fill the cracks in your life.  He will instigate something incredible.

What about you?  What are ways that you can CREATE IN THE CRACKS of your down time?   Please share and gives others some great ideas that they never might’ve considered.

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Why?

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Day 13: EZRA 4-10

Reading Ezra’s comments in chapter 9 must have been gut wrenching. The people had just returned after God had showed them grace after they had been exiled for their wickedness. And how do the people respond the God’s mercy? They start doing the same thing that got them exiled in the first place. They never learned their lesson after 70 years as slaves in a foreign country!

I could see why Ezra could be so upset. His people were squandering an amazing second chance at life. If you have been forgiven, why would you continue doing that exact same thing that God had forgiven you for? We have a lot of Christians who don’t look, dress, or act any different than the next godless person. What does that say of us? What do we then communicate to others about who God us?

May we be different, repent of out compromises, and return to Him with open arms and an open heart. He waiting to bring you back. Pray for our cities and nation tomorrow for just that, and may it usher in a new generation of sold out followers of Jesus who will prepare the way for our coming King.

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Give up or…

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Day 112:  EZRA 1-3

This entry will be short.  There is a reason that 30+ days have past since the first time I blogged about my daily Bible reading.  Have you ever watched your favorite team play in a game that slowly slipped out of control?  Almost like quick sand, it seems almost like the harder the team fights back the faster they sink.  It’s a hopeless feeling.  

One day turned into 1 week which turned into a month.  I had a choice to make.  Give up.  Make excuses.  Or get back up.  THe people of Israel had been in exile for 70 years during the time of Ezra.  Many left to go rebuild their nation.  Others stayed behind.  I would rather die trying than live and never risked.  God’s Spirit is stirring me like He did the people in exile.  In the same way, I choose to get up, walk out, and follow my God in His mission to restore individuals, families, and our nation!