Half Hour

I recently read a book entitled, “The Power of a Half Hour” by Tommy Barnett. Barnett offers various insights on the importance of how we use our time. Have you ever considered what you can do if you will break down your life into half hour segments and give focus to them? Think about the half hour that you might spend thinking about your life and purpose. What about the half hour that you could spend each day improving your gifts and abilities. I guess you could call it your daily half hour “Tune Up”.

Barnett shared the importance of spending half hours with God in reading the Bible, praying and worshipping. He tells the story of how a lady was struggling spending time with God. Her life like many of ours was packed with time restraints. However, one day she realized that every day she spent a half hour in her car going to work. She started the discipline of turning off the radio and spending that half hour talking and listening to God. The discipline was hard to start and keep, but soon became a very important half hour in her day.

Another important half hour of our day could be spent working on our attitude. Our attitude is not just to be seen as a negative or positive part of our life, but is the very central part of who we are. Oh, by the way, people will define you by your attitude.

As you encounter your half hours today, I would encourage you to realize the power in that half hour. Harvey Mackey said, “Time is free, but it’s priceless”. Take a half hour today to be still, listen to God, listen to others, write a thank you note, share with your spouse, play with your children, dream about where you are and where you want to be, examine your daily disciplines, do something unexpected—and the list goes on and on.

We read in Psalm 90:12, “So teach us to count our days that we may gain a wise heart”.

Today, you have 48 half hours—what will you do with them?

Woody

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I.D. Please

Do you remember the last time that someone asked for your personal identification? Maybe it was when you were in the airport, at the bank, checking in at the hotel or maybe when the police officer asked to see it. If you are like me, when I am asked for my I.D, I use my driver’s license. Have you ever stopped to look at the information on your driver’s license? The actual license number, expiration date, issue date, date of birth, weight, height, sex and your address. Also, the class of the license is noted along with any restrictions, if you have any. And then comes the biggie—your picture. That one little card contains a lot of information about us. The key to our driver’s license is the position, privileges and power that it gives us.

What about our identification in Christ? 1 John 4:17b reminds us that “as He is, so are we in this world”. As a Christian, we are identified with Christ in His crucifixion, death and judgment. We are identified with Christ in His resurrection. We are identified with Christ at His coming. Identification is Christ’s becoming one with us that we may be one with Him. As our driver’s license gives us position, privileges and power, think about what our identification with Christ gives to us. In Christ, we have forgiveness, we have hope, our past is forgiven, and our future is fixed. In other words, our identification in Christ gives us a life of victory.

One key component to our driver’s license is the expiration date. I don’t know about you, but it is easy for me to forget about that date. I remember one time that I forgot about the expiration date and my license expired. I had to retake the test to get an updated license. Our identification in Christ is not just about being saved, but it is also a process to be continued.

Would you check you I.D. in Christ today? Is your life up to-date with Christ? Are you living in victory knowing that your identity is hidden in Christ and that Christ lives in you?

Again, I urge you to check your I.D.

Woody

Where Did You Get That?

I recently had a conversation with a school principal. We discussed life in general, the culture and challenges that students are faced with each day. The principal made an interesting statement that has stuck with me. He said, “the schools are a reflection of the homes.” As I have thought about that statement, I think that our schools are not only a reflection of our homes, but our entire culture is a reflection of our homes. Think about this for a moment…

Children learn more from their parents than from all other teachers combined. They learn the language from their par­ents. They learn to walk, eat, work, and think as their fathers and mothers do.

Our children watch us as we live out our marriages and our parenting. Our little boys are hoping to grow and be just like dad and our little girls will be focused on finding a husband just like dad. Our little girls will have the same desires concerning their mom. In our homes, we also teach them how to deal with the daily challenges of life. Parents will also be the ones to teach the importance of seeking and following Christ and living a life that pleases Him.

Once there were two little fish, according to a delightful little tale, and these two little fish noticed that a little crawfish playmate of theirs always swam backward. They tried to teach him to swim as they swam and soon he began to learn. By evening each day he was able to swim almost as well for­ward as the two little fish. But every morning when he re­turned from a night at home, he swam backward again.

This worried the little fish and so they went home with the crawfish. They learned there that their little playmate’s par­ents swam backward.

We learn from our parents and we do as they do. Parents, let us be faithful to teach how to receive, to give unconditional love, how to discipline and leaving our children with good memories.

That is why the Bible teaches us that since parents are the best teachers in the world, they must also teach the first of the commandments, “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.”

DEUTERONOMY 6:4-9

And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. (vv. 6-7)