Men of Redemption

Restoring a Life of Purity -One Day at a Time

Posts Tagged ‘purpose’

TODAY’S DEVOTIONAL READING

Posted by Men of Redemption on February 4, 2019

OUR PASSAGE FOR TODAY: GALATIANS 5:7-15 . . . .

“You ran well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? This persuasion does not come from Him who calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in you, in the Lord, that you will have no other mind; but he who troubles you shall bear his judgment, whoever he is. And I, brethren, if I still preach circumcision, why do I still suffer persecution? Then the offense of the cross has ceased. I could wish that those who trouble you would even cut themselves off! For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!” 

RECOVERY REFLECTION: I remember when i finally realized that my life was changing for the better, having been encouraged to do the right thing and purposefully eradicating all the sinful behaviors out of my life. I wasn’t the one who was doing it but Christ and His grace was the reason. But it seemed so easy at the time and for some reason I neglected the focus of this transformation and found myself slipping back into some behaviors. Just because God came in and did something in my life doesn’t give me a license to sin or return to those behaviors. I had to understand that when God sets me free I am free indeed. I have been called to freedom and I must learn what that is and what it looks like from others who have gone through the struggle.

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Regaining Trust While in Recovery

Posted by Men of Redemption on November 30, 2017

Image result for rebuilding trust

“Rebuilding Takes Time-You are Under Construction”      

Trying to rebuild trust in our marriages is a very difficult, yet consuming task to say the least. It’s going to require of us tremendous dedication and intentionality on our part to trust God to do the impossible at this stage of our recovery. But understand, God isn’t in to quick fixes. He wants to give us something better than what we had before not to restore it. What trust looked like while we were in our “mess” will look completely different when God intervenes and brings transformation guys! Things will look different; our intentions will be with purpose; and there will be no hidden agendas or motives behind anything we say or do. God will show us the damage, and He will lead us and guide us into what needs to take place with the help of those He will place around us and in our lives. We have to understand that God will be doing this, not ourselves! This reminds me of Nehemiah when he saw how devastated the city of Jerusalem was and what he wanted to do to rebuild it. He had passion for his city, his people, and he was willing to go under construction to do it no matter what it took to make it happen. Look at Nehemiah’s desire to rebuild . . . .

“Then I said to them, “You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach.” And I told them of the hand of my God which had been good upon me, and also of the king’s words that he had spoken to me. So they said, “Let us rise up and build.” Then they set their hands to this good work. “- Nehemiah 2:17, 18

Nehemiah wasn’t in a hurry to rebuild, he was in submission to the cause and process to do his part because that was his passion to rebuild the city. How about us? Do we have the passion, the desire to see our marriage, see the trust that has been violated, and seek God and His plan with those He surrounds us with to rebuild our marriage and allow the trust that God will provide to be rebuilt? This is exactly what our wives are praying for-DAILY! Let’s make a stand and go to work guys. If we want trust to return, let’s put our hope in Him who can do the right way!

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READ YOUR WORD THIS MORNING?

Posted by Men of Redemption on October 12, 2017

BEING COMMISSIONED IS PART OF OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD! Image result for the great commission

This morning’s reading is reminding us as children of God that there’s more to being a child of God than carrying His Name or identifying ourselves as His beloved. We have purpose and intention as a believer and we need to understand what the Father has instilled in us for the tasks before us. In order for us to reach those around us with the Gospel-“The Good News”- we need to equip ourselves with God’s anointing and take His message into the world as His disciples. Just as God sent His Son into the world, He also is sending us into our world-our families, our jobs, our neighborhoods, and everywhere we go-to spread and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ. God didn’t create us as trophies that just sits upon a shelf to be  looked at or gazed upon for recognition or affirmation. We have purpose to go forth and declare the good news to others that they might know who Jesus is and see Him actively moving and working in our lives. Our witness is powerful if we are in relationship with the Father because the world will see God’s goodness and mercy in all that we say or do. He has equipped us with His Holy Spirit to go forth in power, victory and authority, so we have no reason not to go forth in His Name. We can not let doubt, inadequacies, low self-esteem, keep us from taking the Word of God into a hurting and dying world. Even if we don’t know how to deliver the message, that’s why He gave us His Holy Spirit to empower us, to encourage us to stand and be intentional in sharing His Word with others. We are commissioned by our Heavenly Father because that’s His desire for us as His children, to draw others to the Truth, the Way and The Life! When God empowers us we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength. Go out into your world and make disciples of men and women everywhere, in Jesus’ Name!

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A Writer’s Thoughts On . . . .

Posted by Men of Redemption on September 12, 2017

.  .  .  GOALS: CHASING AFTER THEM OR RUNNING FROM THEM?

Image result for chsing goalsSo we’re in recovery working on rearranging priorities, allowing God to renew, transform mindsets and our thoughts. And along this journey we’re taking we’ve decided to map out some goals that we’d like to achieve, or at least attempt to reach since we have such a great climb to embark on. So where are you in your goal chasing now that you’ve settled in on your recovery and all of your efforts that you’ve committed to? Or have you set some goals that you’ve overestimated and have decided that you can’t or won’t reach? Or, have you decided that some goals you have set for yourself seem to be too demanding and it’s taking you out of your comfort zone so you’re not pursing them any longer and you’re running from them because the challenge is too much for you? Either way, goals are motivation, and as we continue in our recovery we need goals to shoot for because they will encourage us to go after something that we desire and hope for.

In recovery, there is a place we want to get to at least maintain a consistent life of walking in freedom from the mess we’ve been fighting most of our life. We want to get past the lying to people; we want to able to be honest and sincere without having to deceive or manipulate those around us to gain advantage; and we want to live a life that’s pleasing to God without saying we’re committed to Him but the life we’re living is anything but holy and pure. I think these goals that I have just mentioned are just a few that many of us want to achieve or at least get to that point just to know that you can actually do it. I’ve been asked often by those who read our articles through some comments that when I explain some issues or concerns about what many people are going through in life they ask . . . “It sounds like the people you’re talking about are a little off . . . Are those you speak about that out of touch with life that they don’t get it?” As I read their comments, my heart speaks and cries out for all those who struggle because I know where they are in life with their struggles because I was once there. I know what setting goals are about, not reaching them; not having the confidence or ambition to overcome and settling with whatever life throws at me. That’s not living a productive and God-fearing life! There are those in life who need encouragement, who need motivation to persevere and move forward into the destiny that God has already prepared for them. So I stand in defense for all those who “don’t get it” and those who “are a little off” because it may not have been their fault. Everyone can turn things around, some just need a little push or infusion of courage to move forward in their goals in life. Image result for running from goals

Goals are set for specific reasons. I don’t believe any of us wants to remain where we are in this life, especially when we know that God has so much more for each and every one of us. Whether we’re chasing our goals or running from them for whatever reasons, we can stop right where we’re at and change the course of action we’re taking and begin again. It’s never too late, especially in recovery. Even if we see the challenge is overwhelming, and we’ve had to second-guess our goal-don’t look at the feat or what it’s going to take and how long, look at that goal and declare . . . “You know I set you some time ago and you scared me. But you know what-I’m not going to allow you to dictate what I can or cannot achieve. I will achieve you and I will come out on top!” 

Just some thoughts from a brotha who has set a number of goals, and everyday that God has given me life, health and strength, I will continue to take the attitude that I can and will overcome all obstacles and goals that are before me and in my way in life. I am an overcomer, and I will succeed if I stay the course, trust God in all things, and keep Him first in everything I set out to do in this life. Just saying . . . .

“Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” 

–  Philippians 3:12-14 

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Today, I Will Trust God To . . . .

Posted by Men of Redemption on August 25, 2017

 

 

 .  .  .  TO DEVELOP IN ME A CHRIST-LIKE CHARACTER, PLEASING TO THE LORD.

Today, I pray O God, that I allow you Heavenly Father to instill in me your character, your ways, your attributes that I may be pleasing in your sight; that my heart has true, honorable intentions toward my fellow-man everywhere, so that the joy of the Lord is resonating from my being in all that I do or say. Teach me your statutes Lord God, that your love and grace abounds in every area of my life; I know that where your Spirit is there is liberty so Father I desire to be more and more like you in every day that you give me life. Let there be no evil or vengeance in my soul, no bitterness nor hatred toward anyone Lord God. Let your peace dwell in me richly that I might glorify you with who you created me to be, and the purpose and declaring the Name of Jesus Christ in all the Earth!

Lord, who may abide in Your tabernacle? Who may dwell in Your holy hill? He who walks uprightly, And works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart; He who does not backbite with his tongue, Nor does evil to his neighbor, Nor does he take up a reproach against his friend; In whose eyes a vile person is despised, But he honors those who fear the Lord; He who swears to his own hurt and does not change; He who does not put out his money at usury, Nor does he take a bribe against the innocent. He who does these things shall never be moved.”  –  Psalm 15:1-5 

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A Writer’s Thoughts on . . . .

Posted by Men of Redemption on July 4, 2017

INDEPENDENCE-CELEBRATING ON ALL FRONTS OF VICTORY!

Yes, on this date every year we celebrate our country’s independence, remembering the battles that were fought to gain freedom and independence. The men and women who risked their lives, fighting on the battle fronts because they believed in what our country stood for, freedoms for all mankind everywhere, that the future of this country would have a solid and formable foundation to stand on for many generations to come. They saw something in their purpose that will make a difference in the lives of their children, their grandchildren, great-grandchildren and so on to risk everything they had so that we could have the freedoms we enjoy today. I’m grateful and thankful for their courage, fighting side-by-side knowing the battle was worth fighting for. Freedom costs something people. The one thing I think a lot of people miss is that it costs even more to maintain that freedom after you have achieved it.

Looking at how obtaining freedom through recovery works in familiar efforts, if we who are in recovery would take a serious look at what it took for those who fought for us centuries ago for us to get to this point in life it was much more than we could ever imagine. Yes, the battles were won and victory was obtained through commitment, dedication, determination, diligence and having the right mindset to go after what they thought was important to them. I see the same focus in recovery where men and women struggle with addictive behaviors, looking for freedom but don’t see or understand what the battle or battles are all about. It’s not about going to a counselor, having a few meeting, making minimal progression and after a several sessions you’re free from your behaviors. Not at all! Those of us who have and are still fighting, daily, to consistently walk in freedom are attempting to fight and risk everything so that those who are struggling and will be struggling have the same opportunity to enjoy that freedom like we are. I strongly believe we who are in recovery should evaluate where we are in our journey, and ask ourselves some serious questions: “Am I giving everything I got to this cause?; Am I in all the way with full purpose and intent on finishing the fight with victory in sight?; Am I committed, dedicated, determined, diligent and have the right mindset to move forward in this battle?” How can we go into recovery thinking that freedom will eventually come, all I have to do is attend a few meetings for a few months and freedom is right there. As an individual who has fought this battle and fighting it daily, I assure you without having these questions answered your journey in recovery will be in vain. I celebrate my freedom, walking in it daily because those that have gotten victory and paid the price for me to be able to see those victories, that I can experience those victories in my own life, and I am ever so thankful and grateful. I know what they had to endure. I’ve read their testimonies. I’ve listened to their struggles, and what they did to overcome and achieve walking in freedom to this day. They had things in place. They prepared themselves and they became focused. Those are the tangible efforts I learned from them that helped me start my journey and what’s helping me focused daily to maintain walking in my freedom.

So when I celebrate Independence Day I reflect back not only on my country and what those who fought for my freedoms did, but also on all fronts. We can be free on a general scale from a country’s perspective, but what about being free on a personal and spiritual front? I see so many men and women living their lives trapped, ensnared, in bondage by addictive behaviors, a life of compromise saturated with promiscuity, full of hurts, trauma that have remained suppressed because they’ve chosen to not deal with it because of the pain, that’s not freedom. Freedom, like a lot of things in life is a choice. We don’t have to live like that and those that are struggling can make that choice just like you decide to go do something you enjoy. If you’re someone who is struggling with that choice, talk to someone whom you trust, who will listen to your heart and let them know you want to make that choice to be free and ask him or her how can you make that happen. I pray that you do find the courage to step up to the plate and realize that the fastball that’s coming at you at 100 miles per hour can be hit and knocked out of the park if you’re committed, dedicated, determined, diligent, and have the right mindset my friend.

Just some thoughts from a brother who is grateful and thankful what God has done in his journey through the lives of those He has placed in my life to bring understanding, wisdom and instruction for me walk in freedom and begin to enjoy life as Christ intended for me to enjoy it, with purpose, intention and fullness of joy. That’s true freedom and independence!

 

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WHAT’S YOUR QUESTION TODAY?

Posted by Men of Redemption on May 29, 2017

MY QUESTION IS . . . .

How long is long enough to remain with a support group? I’ve been attending this one group faithfully for the last nine months and I’ve seen good progress in my life. I’ve asked my group leader how long I should stay in the group but he hasn’t given me a clear answer and I don’t want to stay in the group forever. So how long should I remain in the group if my progression shows I’m doing well?

This is one of the most consistent questions that is asked from every man going into support group setting. Even before they put their hands on the curriculum they’re going to use, even before they attend their first group meeting. And believe me, this is something every group leader knows and expects from first time arrivals to their groups. I try to share with the guys that this should not be a question that hovers at the front of their minds. You see, your emphasis is already on the end when you haven’t even began the group. We want that energy, that focus to be centered and enforced at the beginning of your journey to recovery. It’s not about how long should you stay, it’s about what are getting out of the group, it’s curriculum and it’s accountability efforts that making a difference in your life. Your group should be impacting your life on extreme levels so that your life is changing, transforming and evolving into the creative design that God created you to be. If the group has influenced your perspective on life, helped you identify who you are in Christ, and you are walking in healing daily and consistently, chances are that leaving or concerns about leaving won’t be at the forefront of your mind or heart. If God has, and is doing what you’ve been praying for, you’ll not want to concern yourself about leaving but what and how you can invite another brother to come and receive what you have received. When you have received and are walking in your healing, I’ve known guys to not want to leave but stay and help the group, become a part of the leadership team, or even take the program they’ve just completed to their church and start a group there. So it depends on what you’re expecting to achieve when you complete the curriculum. Even more importantly, it’s about what God is saying to you or speaking to you about and what He wants you to do when you complete the program. Don’t base your success on how well you think or believe you’re doing but what is God saying to you and what He wants you to do. God has purpose for each and every one of us, and His thoughts and ways are far above ours(Isaiah 55:8), so finished the program or curriculum, and while you’re doing that continue to pray and ask God what it is that He wants you to do when you’ve completed it. You might be surprised at the answer. I surely was!!

 

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My Daily Devotion – DON’T LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT!

Posted by Men of Redemption on May 4, 2017

START YOUR DAY OFF WITH GOD’S WORD!

Today’s Reading:

Psalm 103:1-22 . . . .

“Bless the Lord, O my soul; And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies, Who satisfies your mouth with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. The Lord executes righteousness And justice for all who are oppressed. He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel. The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy. He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins, Nor punished us according to our iniquities. For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him; As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. As a father pities his children, So the Lord pities those who fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. For the wind passes over it, and it is gone, And its place remembers it no more. But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting On those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To such as keep His covenant, And to those who remember His commandments to do them. The Lord has established His throne in heaven, And His kingdom rules over all. Bless the Lord, you His angels, Who excel in strength, who do His word, Heeding the voice of His word. Bless the Lord, all you His hosts, You ministers of His, who do His pleasure. Bless the Lord, all His works, In all places of His dominion. Bless the Lord, O my soul!”

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RECOVERY TIP FOR THIS WEEK – FOCUS ON THIS!

Posted by Men of Redemption on May 1, 2017

BEING TRANSPARENT – NOBODY CAN BE THE BEST YOU BUT YOU!

How many know who you are? I’m serious!! How many people know exactly who you are? Now that’s a question that many of us take for granted because we automatically assume that everyone in our sphere of influence knows exactly who we are. But in a lot of cases there is some false pretense there and it could be a loaded question .

Well, for one thing, people who “know” us have a good perception of who we are, and it’s due to the fact that they have spent significant time with us in a lot of situations we face daily. They have seen us angry and upset; they have experienced us go through some emotional ups and downs; they have observed us under stress and pressures that bring out the good and the bad in us. Yes, people have seen us at our best and at our worst. But let me ask you this . . . . Do people really “Know” who you are from the inside? Let me go deeper.

How many people in your life know your deepest struggles in life, and I’m talking about temptations, indecision, weaknesses, hurts or trauma from your past, secrets that you’ve never told anyone ever? Some of us may have one or two people in our lives that know maybe one or two of those concerns. That’s good! But I believe everyone ought to know us for who we actually are, and that’s going to take a lot of vulnerability and courage to overcome. I’m not saying to open up our lives to every Tom-Dick & Harry that comes along our journey. What I am saying is that those of us who have struggle with identity, knowing and understanding who we are in this life, we need to begin the process of sharing with those we trust and value as friends and close brothers and begin to share our inter-most feelings with them and let them know what’s going on inside of us. Some of us have issues concerning opening up to others because of what we’ve gone through, the pain and hurt we’ve experience, and we basically feel that it’s none of anybody’s business from the get go. There is some truth to that. But how long will that be kept that up and not address those issues and concerns by getting some help with those issues. As long as we continue to hold on to our pains, our hurts, our shame and our guilt, we’ll never overcome those issues and we’ll be stuck there in life back there. Where is God in all of this? After all, didn’t Jesus Christ die for all of this? Our sins, our pains and hurts, these are the very things that are keeping so many of us from moving forward. I sought out help to get some understanding about who I was, why am I feeling like I do, and how can I get past this. I want people to know me for who I am, and not just what they see. Yeah, we all go through some things in our lives and many of us can’t overcome them because the pain is too much; the hurts are too much bare again. But for those of us who are in recovery, as you begin to learn about transparency and understand that process, and allow God to minister to your hurts and pains, He will heal you of that and you’ll begin to walk in that healing by being you. Nobody can be the best you but you! So if you’re still struggling with not letting who you are shine because of the issues aforementioned, I encourage you to seek out some help and get some understanding and begin to deal with those issues. Moving forward is what we want to do while in recovery. These issues can be barriers and distractions can and will prohibit us from progression ultimately failure in all of our efforts.

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Read Your Word This Morning?

Posted by Men of Redemption on April 26, 2017

ALL OF US HAVE A CALLING: SO DON’T ALLOW EXCUSES TO HINDER THAT CALLING

 

Have you ever asked God what your calling is on your life? Or maybe you don’t even know there is a calling for your life, and it has a purpose you weren’t even aware of. Well, we do! God just didn’t create human being just for the sole purpose of creation. He has a purpose, a plan, because he knew what the world was going to be like, especially when He gave us all the gift of free will. God knew that every created being was going to live life as they perceived it in their own minds. But He also created a small part in our hearts that’s especially designed for us to commune with Him, and that part has been infiltrated with worldly thinking, worldly concepts among other things we allowed to influence. No matter, God has intended purpose and calling on all of His creation and we cannot run from it. Some of hear God calling everyday, and yet we look for reason, for excuse to avoid acknowledging Him or run from His calling. We say things like . . . . “Who was that saying that? “Something keeps telling I should be doing that!” Or “This thing has been on my mind since I could remember!” Chances are, that’s God still trying to get our attention and make known His calling to us. Then we have some of us who know what God is saying to us and we feel we’re not good enough to do what He asks or requires of us. For whatever reason, we believe we’re inadequate, not qualified, and we look for a reason to tell Him maybe He has the wrong person. I’ve got news for you-God knows what He wants, who He wants and exactly what He wants that individual what to do. He will not call anyone to anything without equipping them to handle the tasks He ordains. There were many people in the Bible that portrayed the same mentality and mindset. What causes someone to run or attempt to avoid their calling-many things. Just to name a few- fear, lack of trust, sin, doubt and so on. Any of these has worked for so many since the beginning of time. How about you? Do you recognize any of these examples? Are you running from your calling from the Lord God, your creator? We can’t run from God, nor can we hide from Him. What He starts and begins in you He will complete, trust me on this. One day, some how, some way, He will get our attention, and hopefully we ill acknowledge Him and say . . . . “Yes Lord, I’m sorry for running. Here I am Lord, send me!”  

 

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