I Got This?

IGotThisI’m guilty of saying, “I got this,” even when I’m drowning. No, seriously, not metaphorically drowning, literally drowning. I was in my late twenties when my wife and I went with our church on a canoe trip. I had been a couple of times and seemed to have the whole paddling and steering thing down. I was thinking, “I got this.” I mean it’s not rocket science, and after all, I was the “man of my canoe.”

We decided to break for lunch on a sandbar that was at a turn in the deceptively lazy river. It was a hot day, so we waded out into the water to cool off a bit. I couldn’t help but notice that the sandbar beneath my feet was extremely soft. I stepped forward and again, the sand gave way. This happened several times before I realized that not only was the sand giving way, there was an undercurrent. With each step, I was literally losing ground and falling deeper and deeper under the water. I would pull myself up for a gulp of air thinking the whole time, you guessed it…I got this.

Screaming for help was not an option, but my face must have conveyed a deep sense of urgency as I one more time pulled myself to the surface. It was feeling close to the last time that I could muster the power in my limbs to thrust myself up.

A couple of my friends saw what was happening and sprang into action. While I was still attempting to downplay how much danger I was in, there was no denying, I needed help and quick. Had it not been for the quick thinking and observation of my friends that came to my aid, I would not be alive to share this story.

Had I been prideful and turned down their offers to help, I would have drowned. Played out a bit farther, had I resisted them, and emphatically declared, like we often do, “I got this!” They would have recoiled and remained where they stood, all the while painfully watching me drown.

Even as I write the recollection of this account, I feel the breathlessness, the overwhelming powerful pull beneath of the deep, and the suffocating effects of the water swirling around my nostrils and mouth. I beg you friends who are reading this, PLEASE don’t wait until it’s too late. The sad truth is, not all of those men who helped were great swimmers and I could have potentially put them at risk by waiting as long as I did.

Think about it like this, if you aren’t willing to do it for yourself, be willing to do it for your family, your friends, and those who care deeply for you.

Don’t wait until it’s too late. Please reach out for help, or accept the help that kind and caring friends and family may be offering. There are just times when what you’re facing can cause you to drown; maybe not in water, but in pride, arrogance, and self-pity. It’s not worth it. Saving face, or thinking you’re admitting failure, in the grand scheme of things, pales in comparison to the relief you’ll feel when stepping back onto the safety of the shore.

There will just be times you must be willing to admit…You don’t “got it!”

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labor. 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. 11 Again, if two lie together, then they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? 12 And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken. Ecclesiastes 4:9 – 12

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Inspirational Sermonettes, Devotionals, and Sermon Ideas for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  ~ RD Mangold

The Thread of Resilience

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. I Peter 5:10

Throughout the rough course that is our life, there is a thread of resilience carefully woven into the fabric of our existence. Viewed in the right light, that is the light of God’s love and grace, that thread takes on a hue of compassion and tenderness. In the absence of God’s light, that very same thread of resilience exhibits bitterness and resentment.

Resilience is borne out of resistance, hardship, and even tragedy. Some of what we endure is brought on by our own selfishness, but other times we are being chastened, or corrected by the Lord. Hebrews 12:11 encourages us that, “Now no chastening for the present seems to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby.

Were it not for God’s loving, yet firm Hand, we would be as a fatherless child Hebrews tells us. In fact, God corrects those He loves. Were we left to our own devices, appetites, and affections, we would find ourselves miserable and lost. Knowing, that when God corrects us it builds resilience, should bring us peace of mind. Because God’s motive for correcting us is borne out of love, not some selfish desire to manipulate. God is ultimately cultivating us, if we allow Him, so that one day we can spend eternity with Him.

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute.  One Minute Spiritual Sermonettes and Sermon Ideas  for Busy Christians, Pastors, Teachers, and Bible Students!  Visit our ABOUT PAGE  for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you.  Rev. RD Mangold

From Grief of Mind to Peace of Mind – Training Our Generations

And Esau was forty years old when he took to wife Judith the daughter of Beeri the Hittite, and Bashemath the daughter of Elon the Hittite: 35Which were a grief of mind unto Isaac and to Rebekah. Genesis 26:34-35

Trampling underfoot the direction of his grandfather Abraham (Gen. 24:3), Esau married two “Canaanite” women who grieved the mind of Isaac and Rebekah. Esau was bent on bucking the values and mandates of his forefathers. As generations progress there is a propensity for challenging things we may not have been properly taught to respect and revere.

We could easily allow certain boundaries and traditions in our walk with God to fall to the wayside relegating them to old fashioned, burdensome, and narrow-minded. As strict or loose as you live for God, your children, and grandchildren could, if not properly taught and trained, start to allow some timeless standards, traditions, and values to drop off feeling they’re antiquated.

God commanded Israel to 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 (Deut. 6:7).

For every one time you teach your child something is right or wrong, there’s a wicked world out there telling them, “If it feels good do it!” We need to be relentless in our love, teaching and training of our children and even our grandchildren; essentially transforming them from a “grief of mind” to a “peace of mind.”

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Divine Detour or Rebellious Roadblock

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

This is a comforting scripture we often refer to in times of inexplicable circumstances. How blessed we are that God included this reassurance in HIS word for us. There is nothing more disturbing when tragedy and catastrophe happens, than thinking it happened for no good reason. The pain, the anguish and the loss happened and it was just random.  We need to know that no matter how dark the trial or test, no matter how long and hard the road, and no matter how much it hurts at this moment, God is going to work it all out…and not just work it out, but work together with my circumstances for something GOOD!

At these crossroads of calamity, if we’re not cautious, we’ll allow the very situation God ordained for our good, to entertain self-pity, incite rebellion, or engender bitterness.

If you’re inclined toward allowing dire circumstances to embitter you, ponder this – Will you allow this junction in your life to remain a “Divine Detour” or become a “Rebellious Roadblock?” Divinely inspired detours result in God’s perfect purpose coming to pass. Rebellious roadblocks result in continued despair and isolation. In so doing, we forever alter the outcome and exempt ourselves from God’s true motive – allowing all things to work together for our good.

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

No Free Rides When You're Running from God

Now the word of the LORD came unto Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, 2Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. 3But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. Jonah 1:1-3

In Isaiah 55:11 God declared regarding His Word, “it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.” How is it we think our plans supersede God’s? Jonah was foolish enough to think he could outrun God’s command to arise and cry against Nineveh. In all actuality, when we run from God it’s going to cost us dearly, and Jonah indeed “paid the fare thereof” and it was more than he was willing to pay…

  • He paid the fare for the ship ride to Tarshish
  • He paid in toiling on the stormy seas
  • He paid for 3 days and nights in the belly of the giant fish

Ironically, like Jonah we utilize more energy running from God than we would simply performing the actual assignment God tasked us with!

The shipmaster rightfully called Jonah O Sleeper.”  Jonah needed to be awakened from his self-centeredness and pride to complete His God-given mission as do we. Awake thou that sleepest,” because Jesus called us to preach the gospel to every living creature…if not, the fare may be more than we’re willing to pay!

There are no free rides when you’re running from God!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

Immobilizing Effects of Guilt

And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden. Genesis 3:8

For Adam and Eve, hearing God’s voice meant a visit with the Creator. Each encounter with God brought another blessing; a new tree from which to eat, a new flower upon which to gaze, a new creation for which to praise Him. But this time God’s presence brought fear. Guilt and shame reared their ugly heads. Adam and Eve knew death was the punishment for disobedience. Like children, they ran and hid prolonging their impending doom.

Guilt leaves us feeling unworthy of a relationship with our Creator. Guilt, a close cousin to Fear, immobilizes us like a deer in the headlights. But God’s perfect love casts out all fear. He desires to reconcile with humanity. Don’t turn a deaf ear to the overtures of Grace. Don’t spurn the love of your Heavenly Father. Don’t ignore His outstretched hand. Doing so means an outcome we all dread – eternal separation from the very one who died to save us!

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

God's Order or Ours?

What glorious paths can be ours when we tap into, and allow God’s Order to become our own! From the beginning we can see that our God is indeed a God of order. He is NOT chaotic, but very methodical; structuring our world from the very seed out…to include all of life that is. And placing within that seed that which will sustain and propagate life through the ages.

The Problem comes when we, that is Man, begins to worship the order over the God of the order (in his search of an image). And when God does not grace us with His Presence, due to our sins, or whatever…we (like Saul) take it upon ourselves to do it on our own. We order the thing and present “our thing” as “God’s thing” and try to manipulate, dominate and coerce others into it, with a great degree of exclusivity involved. (After all, IT IS, ‘our thing’) and we end up with something that kinda resembles God…and yet, not at all. For at its heart it is corrupt and flesh based.

By Guest Author Rev. James Willoughby is an Evangelist and Bible Teacher, as well as a published author. His teaching ministry, Focal Points carries him into many different venues. Emphasizing…discipleship training, small group development, structures and strategies for leadership, and ministry mentoring for young men and women. His evangelistic ministry has been blessed of God with great anointing, and powerful demonstration of the Spirit in healings and miracles as he ministers the Word of Faith. View all posts by jswilloughby →

“Serminutes” – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold

To Rebel is to Repel

Yet honor me [Saul] now, I pray thee, before the elders of my people, and beforeIsrael, and turn again with me, that I may worship the LORD thy God. (I Sam. 15:30)

Once the most humble man in Israel, rebellious Saul was stripped of his kingship. When told of God’s rejection, Saul quickly sidesteps his relationship saying the “Lord THY God.” In stark contrast, David’s vocabulary is replete with relationship in Psalms, “I will love thee, O LORD, my strength, my rock, my fortress, my deliverer; my God…” (18:1-2). Remember, when you rebel, you repel your relationship with God!

Serminutes – Sermon in a Minute. A one minute spiritual pick-me-up for busy Christians!  Visit this POST for details on what exactly that is. Thank you for visiting today! May the Lord richly bless you. Rodger Mangold