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Sonntag, 7. Oktober 2012

The Battle for a Man’s Heart

The Battle for a Man’s Heart

Any guy who has been through preseason football drills has experienced a tough-as-nails coach seeking to build emotional and physical strength and a sense of team unity.
With August not that far away, anyone who has endured summer practices can relate to this scene from the popular movie Remember the Titans:
“What are you?” the coach shouts.
“Mobile! Agile! Hostile!” the players shout back.
“What is fatigue?”
“Army clothes.”
“Will you quit?”
“No. We want some mo’, we want some mo’.”
Right about now, some men are probably thinking, “Yeah, I remember those days – and I’m glad they’re over.”
While that may be true, there is value in recalling the camaraderie, physical challenges, and optimism of youth. To fight the battles facing our society, we need perseverance and strength.
Victory over apathy, indifference and immorality are possible. But we can’t achieve it whining about how tough things are, endlessly flipping the TV remote, or amusing ourselves playing Angry Birds on our iPhone.
Call to Battle
Mike Silva Evangelist
Second Corinthians 4:8-10 includes a stirring call to battle. In this passage Paul outlines the way to look at obstacles: 1) hard pressed yet not crushed, 2) perplexed but not in despair; 3) persecuted but not forsaken, 4) struck down, but not destroyed.
Why? As he says in verse 10, because we carry in our body Jesus’ death, so that His life may be manifested through us.
This is the source of our strength. A struggle for integrity, honesty and purity rages. To win, you must pursue and attain these qualities. Like a Navy Seal, you must earn your Trident badge every day!
Why do you have to fight, even when you’re so tired you feel like throwing your hands in the air and saying, “What’s the use?”
Doing so plays into the enemy’s hands. As 1 Peter 5:8 tells us, the devil is like a roaring lion who seeks victims. His primary weapon is deception, which comes in such forms as temptation, intimidation and discouragement. He is also a master at twisting the truth, hoping to make you believe there is no hope.
If he can get you to disengage from the battle, Satan can not only ensure your destruction, he can eliminate retaliation. After all, it’s hard to fight with your pants down.
Others are Counting on You
Mike Silva Evangelist
Don’t fall for the devil’s tricks. Others are counting on you: your family, friends, community and nation need to know there are men who can be counted on to do the right thing.
If you expect to be a warrior, you can’t quit. Winning starts with leading by example. You must take seriously the task of guarding morality, high standards and faithfulness to family.
Don’t count on constant reassurance from those around you. They may be too busy with their own problems to notice. Warriors remember that they have a mission to complete, regardless of who’s watching.
I remember legendary football coach Pepper Rodgers, an advocate of the wishbone offense.
Running the wishbone, one year his team got off to such a bad start that everybody was mad at him. He later recalled, “My dog was my only true friend.”
Despite the opposition, Rodgers said, “The wishbone offense is like Christianity. If you believe in it only until something goes wrong, you didn’t believe it in the first place.”
This means if you profess to follow Christ, you have to remain strong and continue to believe in His promises no matter what. In Matthew 16:19 He said He would give us the keys to the kingdom of heaven. And, that whatever we bind on earth will be bound in heaven. I call that a “Cash for Clunkers” program that actually works!
Remain Steadfast
Mike Silva Evangelist
So, in the midst of this battle, how can we survive? When we fall, how do we get up again? The answer is through PMS: Pre-Meditated Steadfastness.
Here are a few examples of great people who persevered by continuing to “get up:”
  • Moses.
When Moses stood in the desert and a bush started burning, he thought, “No way!” God said, “Way.”
The Lord had a great mission for Moses: to lead Israel to freedom. Even when Moses protested that he wasn’t capable, God insisted he could do it. The same goes for you today.
  • Abraham.
Standing on a mountain, Abraham looked over two landscapes. One appeared
lush, fertile and rich. The other stood flat, dry and lifeless. Abraham gave Lot, his brother-in-law, first choice. And Lot, representing human nature, selfishly chose paradise.
I can imagine Abraham walking toward his new real estate, doubting his wisdom. But as he whispered to himself, “No way,” God said, “Watch Me.” Abraham thrived while Lot lost his riches, his wife and his integrity.
  • Daniel.
When the king of Babylon said that no one could worship any other god beside him, Daniel refused to listen. Risking life and limb, he wound up in a den of lions. But God honored his courage.
Want to be like these biblical heroes? Follow these three practical steps to bring change, power and adventure to your life:
 1. Get connected
When they take a hit, too many men retreat to seclusion. Stay connected to other men. Let them know when you’re hurting. Others can relate.
 2. Spend time with Jesus.
Acts 4:13 says the crowds were amazed when they saw Peter and John’s boldness.
Although they were just ordinary men with no special training, people “realized that they had been with Jesus.”
3. Be steadfast!
If you’re feeling tired and weak, that is understandable. Don’t stay there, though. Drop to your knees and get into another gear. In prayer you will find strength!

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