Tuesday, September 25, 2007

How to Know and Do God's Will

When I am confronted with decisions, my tendency is to analyze, list the pros and cons, and determine the most logical answer to the problem. I keep a note on my computer monitor that says "I need God!" This is to remind me that I need to go to my God and seek His desires for me instead of attempting to problem-solve my way through the issues.
Recently my husband preached a very practical sermon on this subject. I am including a simple summary from the Word.

Romans 12:1-2
1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

• Do this – offer ourselves as living sacrifices as an act of worship
• Don’t do this – conform to the world and what it tells you to do
• Instead… be willing to allow God to renew your mind
• Then… you will be able to discern God’s will for your life

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Temperaments, Part 7: All Strengths and No Weaknesses?

Cholerics have an answer for everything – therefore, they can dismiss any hint of a weakness by blaming it on others, circumstances, the weather, etc. Most Cholerics really believe that they are all strengths and no weaknesses.

• Cholerics are often work-aholics. They don’t like to relax. They will never be lazy. This affects marriages and children as well as friends and co-workers.
• Cholerics are only comfortable when they are in charge. They must learn to step back and relax when someone else is leading.
• Cholerics have a tendency to be arrogant – looking down on the “dummies”. The don’t tolerate incompetence and inefficiency.
• Cholerics are great manipulators. They have a way of getting people to do things without them knowing what happened.
• Cholerics are impatient and don’t handle people well.
• Cholerics speak their mind. Because they think so quickly and they know what is right, they will say what comes to mind without a thought of how it will affect others.
• Cholerics love controversy and arguments, thus stirring up trouble.
• Cholerics have difficulty admitting wrong and apologizing.

*If only the Powerful Choleric would open his mind to examine his weaknesses and admit he had a few, he could become the perfect person he thinks he is.
*(from Personality Plus by Florence Littauer)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Temperaments, Part 6: The Powerful Choleric

*Oh, how this world needs Powerful Cholerics!

The firm control when others are losing theirs.
The cut of decision for foggy minds.
The grip of leadership to head us to the good.
The willingness to take a chance in a doubtful situation.
The confidence to hold true in the face of ridicule.
The independence to stand alone and be counted.
The road map to life when we’ve gone astray.
The urge to “take arms against a sea of troubles and, by opposing, end them.”

I am sure that after you read the above, you immediately had someone in mind that fits the description. Cholerics are known – they are not afraid to be “out there”. They are always reaching and succeeding.

*“While Sanguines are talking and Melancholies are thinking, Cholerics are achieving.”

Cholerics are often outgoing and optimistic. They communicate openly with people and you will always know where they stand.

They will crusade for injustice – with a compulsiveness to make things right.

They are not afraid of opposition. They can stand their ground.
They exude confidence.

Proverbs 11:14 TLB
Without leadership, a nation is in trouble, but with good counselors there is safety.

*(from Personality Plus by Florence Littauer)

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Temperaments, Part 5: Cheer Up the Melancholy

Sorry for the delay in getting back to Temperaments. - Maybe because it’s time to talk about the weaknesses of the Melancholy (that would be me).

• Melancholies have a hard time relaxing and having fun. They are often the ones in a large group that will leave the room when it’s time for a game or an icebreaker. But, if you put a few melancholies together in a group they will eventually revel in the fact that they have found someone who really understands them. They tend to feel that they are “one of a kind” creating a sense of isolation.

• Melancholies are prone to depression. They take life too seriously and they must realize that no one likes to be around gloomy people.

• Melancholies often take things too seriously. Because they are careful with their words, they assume that everyone else is also. So when the choleric speaks his mind or the sanguine blurts out their feelings, the melancholy reads much into these comments and finds a deep, hidden meaning. Developing an understanding of the other temperaments will help a melancholy. They will realize that the sanguine and the choleric are not out to get them.

• Melancholies don’t easily forget. I can recall trivial incidents in my childhood years that were traumatizing to me – elementary teachers who looked at me angrily – friends who appeared to be whispering about me- hasty words that cut straight to my heart. This can take it’s toll on a marriage.

• Melancholies often struggle with low self-esteem. Because of their need for perfection any criticism given to them leaves them reeling and insecure. We allow others to contribute to the opinions we have of ourselves.

• Melancholies can be their own worst enemy. Again, their need for perfection will keep them from taking on tasks or projects because they fear that they won’t do it perfectly.

• Melancholies have unrealistic expectations of themselves and others. This will result in a critical spirit that can destroy relationships.

• Melancholies need to relax and realize that not everything in life is perfect.

I suppose I went overboard on the weaknesses of the Melancholy because I am one. I have struggled with all of these things, but Praise God, because of the work that He has done in my life I am learning to rest in Him.

Remember, our goal as a child of God, is not simply to understand our strengths and weaknesses, it is to allow the Holy Spirit to TRANSFORM our temperaments – making us more like Christ every day.

Romans 12:2
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world [the flesh], but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.