What is marriage?  Where did it come from?  What is its purpose?

The subject of marriage is getting a lot of attention and spurring a lot of discussion these days.  A lot of people are confused as to what marriage is really all about.  Is marriage only there to make me happy?  Or is there more to it than that?

Check out the special message I shared yesterday about THE MYSTERY OF MARRIAGE and find out for yourself.

p.s.  And make sure you stay tuned till the very end.  You’ll see a special video cameo appearance from a close friend of mine from back in the day…

benfranklinBelow is an excerpt from a speech by Benjamin Franklin at the Constitutional Convention in July 1797.

After struggling for several weeks and making little progress on the writing of the Constitution, 81 year old Benjamin Franklin rose and addressed the President (referred to as Sir) and the rest of the troubled and confused convention.

This is what he said:

In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine protection. 

Our prayers, Sir, were heard and they were graciously answered  All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our favor….

And have we now forgotten this powerful Friend?  Or do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?

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Still on summer blogging hiatus but below is a great post I wrote 3 years ago about a topic that is extremely near and dear to my heart: LIVING WITH PASSION!  Nothing’s worse than just going through the motions – in every aspect of life: marriage, career, spiritual life, etc.  We weren’t made to just exist; we were meant to LIVE!  I pray that this post would remind you of that and then help you find your passion once again.

 

“If you are living out of a sense of obligation, you are slave.” – Wayne Dyer

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be a slave to anything on this earth.  Being a slave means you don’t do things because you want to, but rather because you HAVE to.  There’s a big difference.

Yesterday I wrote about the importance of living with passion.  Nothing is more frustrating than living without passion and just going through the motions.  When there’s no passion, even the smallest and most trivial task becomes burdensome and exhausting.  However, when you are passionate about something, the most challenging and difficult task seems enjoyable and something you look forward to.  Passion makes a world of difference.

I don’t want to be without passion in my marriage, my career, my relationships and in my spiritual life too.  I WANT TO LIVE PASSIONATELY!!!

But how can we maintain that passion?  Life will inevitably try to rob me of that passion.  Imagine a helium balloon where the balloon represents your life and the helium represents your passion.  When you’re full of passion, you fly high.  But inevitably that passion starts to wane and you start to lose some steam.

That’s life isn’t it?  We get on a high and get energized – again, you can apply this to any aspect of life – but then we soon lose steam and begin to sink.  When we’re on our high, we make promises and commitments and we think we’ll live like this forever.  And then the world begins to beat us down day after day and eventually the spiritual high is just a distant memory.

How can we maintain our passion? 

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“The Christian life may not be MISTAKE-free, but it can be GUILT-free.”

The finale in the Fighting Failure series brought us face to face with the greatest enemy of them all…DESPAIR!  And specifically, we talked about the despair that comes from guilt and shame – feeling like I’ve gone too far and messed up too badly.

If you struggle with guilt and have a hard time forgiving yourself after you’ve repented, YOU MUST LISTEN TO THIS MESSAGE and see for yourself what God has to say about your guilt and your sin.

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This is a guest post from Peter Matta – a pharmacist living in Toronto, Canada.  In this post, Peter shares his journey from a skeptic to a believer – from someone who doubted/questioned God, to someone who fully submits and lives his life for God.  A truly beautiful story!  If you too are interested in guest posting on my blog, please visit my Guest Post guidelines for more info.

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Many people argue that they don’t need God, that they are perfectly happy without Him.  Those same people usually think that all God cares about are rules and having us obey them.  We (Christians) often respond to by saying that God doesn’t care about rules, but instead He cares about a relationship.  He doesn’t want us to be good; He just wants US!  He wants ME!  He wants YOU!  He wants to be with us and us with Him.  That is the “will of God” that people so often search for.

But the question I ask is this: why should I want to be with God?  (I know this sounds like a basic question, but humor me here).

I know that He chooses me, but why should I choose Him??  Am I even given a choice?  He says if I don’t choose Him then I go to hell!  What kind of God punishes people for no reason except for not choosing Him?

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Summer’s officially here and that means it’s time for me to take my annual blogging hiatus till August. I’ll still be posting three times per week: message videos on Mondays and guest posts on Fridays; but the Wednesday posts won’t be new content. Instead, I’ll be going back through some of my favorite and most popular posts and reposting them on a weekly basis – starting today.  Here’s a post that I wrote 2 years ago after I ran my first 5k race.  As I prepare to run a 10k race this year, I thought it would be fun to look back at where I started.  Hope you enjoy!

I DID IT! YES!  I DID IT!!!  That was one of the first thoughts that entered my head yesterday shortly after I crossed the finish line of my first 5k race.  I ACCOMPLISHED MY GOAL!  I DID IT!

Of course, I’d be lying if I said it was the first thought – to be fully honest, I think my first thought was closer to “I NEED WATER AND A PIECE OF OPEN SPACE TO COLLAPSE ON FOR A FEW MINUTES.”  But it wasn’t long afterwards that the feeling of exhaustion was replaced by a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment.

I think I finally understand why so many people like to run in these races.  It never made sense to me before, but I think I get it now.  I learned a lot in the process and I want to share some of lessons with you to hopefully make a believer out of you too.

The most important lesson I learned is this:  SETTING a goal and ANNOUNCING the goal makes it easier to ACCOMPLISH that goal.

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“Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead.”  2 Corinthians 1:9

DISCOURAGEMENT – a feeling we’re all familiar with.  Why does God allow us to get discouraged when we’re trying to serve Him and follow Him and obey His commandments?  Shouldn’t God be helping to make our lives easier?  Shouldn’t He be taking care of those things are causing us to be discouraged?  Or is that possible that God would allow us to be discouraged to bring about some good for us?

That’s the topic of Round 4 in the Fighting Failure series.  In the message, we look at the Apostle Paul – a man of incredible faith and strength who one day found himself “despairing of life.”  How could this great man of faith feel so discouraged?  And more importantly, what message was God trying to him through the discouragement?

Check out the message above and see for yourself.

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