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Comparing

Posted by on Sep 11, 2019 in Prayer Perspective | Comments Off on Comparing

For we are not bold to class or compare ourselves with some of those who commend themselves; but when they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are without understanding. 2 Corinthians 10:12

When comparing is the wrong choice

Have you ever found yourself thinking that someone else has it so much better than you? If you have—as I have at various times—you probably also noticed that your thoughts were not infused with the spirit of love and grace! Instead, if you were honest with yourself at all, you would have recognized jealousy, bitterness, and possibly even some hatred rising up within you. And as the apostle Paul wrote, that attitude of bitter comparison shows a dire lack of understanding on your part.

On the other hand, have you ever found yourself thinking that you were better than someone else? If so—as I have, also, at various times—you may have noticed that your mindset was not like Christ’s—with humility of mind regarding another as more important than yourself (Philippians 2:3b, paraphrased). In fact, if you were at all self-aware, you would have recognized pride, arrogance, and possibly even some hatred lodged like a rock within your soul. Once again, as Paul wrote, that attitude of a smugly superior comparison reveals a blatant lack of understanding on your part.

What do you do when you realize you’ve compared yourself to others, whether from jealousy or superiority? Acknowledge those thoughts and attitudes to God, own them before Him, make no excuses for yourself, and repent. Apply 1 John 1:9 to yourself and trust God to help you to walk comparison-free.

When comparing is the right choice

…I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord… Philippians 3:8a

You know not to compare yourself to others, whether for better or for worse. But here, Paul is directing all of us to compare two deeply important aspects of our own personal lives, one to the other—knowing Christ Jesus as Lord vs. Everything Else.

As I look around my home—my safe, secure, comfortable home—I recognize that in comparison to what others own, it lands on both sides of the spectrum. It’s better than some, not as nice as others. And I’m OK with that because my value in life is not in what I own.

However, Paul wraps it all up—possessions, wealth, beauty, talent, prowess, position, reputation, and even spiritual “ranking”—in the same package he calls All Things. He then compares that total package of his whole life to ONE thing—knowing Christ. Guess which wins?

In fact, Paul states this: “Everything else is loss compared to the surpassing value of knowing Christ.” Knowing Jesus—in ever-increasing intimacy—causes everything else in your life to take its rightful—and subordinate—place. Knowing Christ doesn’t denigrate everything else, but it certainly allows you to put it all in perspective. Knowing Christ is far more valuable than Any Other Aspect of your life, whether your possessions, wealth, beauty, talent, prowess, position, reputation, or spiritual “ranking”.

I pray we all grow in our full appreciation of the surpassing value of knowing Christ.

Dorothy

© 2019, Dorothy Frick

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Jesus’ advice to sheep in the midst of wolves

Posted by on Jul 8, 2019 in Prayer Perspective | Comments Off on Jesus’ advice to sheep in the midst of wolves

Wow! This just came up on my Facebook page as a “memory”. I wrote it three years ago, but it hit the bullseye for what I’m going through right now. Here it is:

I can’t sleep yet. I had three Scriptures weighing on my heart as I laid in bed weeping and praying.

Jesus said, “Because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.” (Matt. 24:12) He saw it coming across the millennia. He told us this not to scare us but to prepare us.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Prov. 4:23

“Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.” Matt. 10:16

You and I are NOT accountable for the conditions of anyone else’s heart. We are each accountable for our OWN heart, attitudes, actions, and behaviors.

Therefore, what I am telling myself I will share with you: Don’t let your love grow cold, guard your heart, be shrewd [alert] AND be innocent.

May God’s blessings, protection, discernment, and direction be on all of us as we navigate this crazy world.

–Dorothy

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Why I pray for America

Posted by on Jul 4, 2019 in Prayer Perspective, Special days | Comments Off on Why I pray for America

I wrote the following about four or five years ago. It is a passion I intend to pursue the rest of my days:

As I look at my nation, I must pray. It’s in my DNA; it is built into the very fabric of my relationship with God. When I see obstacles in my nation, I am challenged by my rich heritage to stand my ground and trust God.

I feel I owe it to the Founders who pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor to guard, nurture, protect, and defend the fledgling nation.

I owe it to past generations of men and women of God—Charles Finney, D. L. Moody, William J. Seymour, Billy Sunday, Maria Woodworth Etter, and all the rest, both known and unknown—who took advantage of their American liberty to pour out their lives for the cause of Christ.

I owe it to my dad, who although he never claimed to know God intimately, was willing as a young man to risk his life in service to a country which guaranteed that his daughter, yet to be born, would bear the sacred right to lead her own life, speak openly, and worship God without any fear that acting on her convictions could lead to loss of her freedom…

I must pray. I must pray the Word of God over my nation. I must seek her deliverance when evil threatens her. I must stand my ground even if it takes the rest of my life. I can do no less, so help me God.

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A prayer of consecration

Posted by on May 13, 2019 in Prayer Perspective | 1 comment

Father, You said in Your Word that if I would delight myself in You, You would give me the desires of my heart (Psalm 37:4).

Lord, You’ve been very good to me, but You’ve been no genie! My wish has NOT been Your command. I understand WHY now better than I did before; I also appreciate Your great wisdom in it, as well. Now I am asking You to sort through and filter my wants and desires so that the chaff—the wrongly-motivated, wrongly-based desires—blows away by the wind of Your Spirit.

Also, please filter through my expectations. Those presuppositions that I’ve placed on others which have not been conceived by Your Spirit, I release to You to abort and eradicate. I ask that a right spirit, a right heart, and a willing soul be renewed within me and that all my expectations will arise from Your Word and intimate fellowship with You—not from what I THINK people ought to do.

Thank You, God, for cleansing, removing, rebuilding, and reordering my desires and expectations so they more fully align with Your purpose. And I believe, according to Psalm 139:23-24, that the “hurtful way—the way of pain” will no longer have a voice within the recesses of my soul.

Thank You, God!

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Are you living like it’s Saturday?

Posted by on Apr 19, 2019 in Special days | Comments Off on Are you living like it’s Saturday?

Are you living like it’s Saturday?

For most of us, Saturday means this:

Projects. Pastimes. Parties. Plans. Playing.

Rest. Recreation. Recuperation. Recharging.

But once, a couple of thousand years ago, there was a Saturday unlike any other Saturday. That day, like every other Saturday before it and after it, was sandwiched between a Friday and a Sunday. But those two days (as you can imagine) were unlike any other Friday or Sunday before or after.

On that Friday a group of friends witnessed the vile, unjustified arrest of their Friend, a blatantly rigged trial, and a patently predetermined death verdict. They watched helplessly as their Friend was dragged away, flogged, and beaten beyond recognition.

The hope which permeated His every word burned in their own hearts, stoked by the power of His presence. He was the One. He was the Messiah; but here He was now, brutally cut down as they heaved Him high on the crossbeams, slamming His tormented body into place for all to see…to mock, to jeer…

Hope was fading. Joy had withered away. Their Friend, the One who had healed the sick and raised the dead, was gone. His lifeless body was laid in a tomb with a stone covering it so decay could finish its slow work unmolested.

It was Saturday. A numb, raw, gloomy Saturday.

Sunday had not yet arrived.

Now, you and I know what that particular Sunday had in store for His friends…for the world…and for you and me. We know of the pre-dawn rendezvous at the tomb; the rolled-away stone; the discarded burial ointments and herbs when once the strange salutation was spoken, “Why do you seek the Living among the dead? He is not here. He is risen.”

Now, we, like His friends of old, know Him. We have walked with Him and have talked with Him. We know He is risen, He is alive, and because of that, we know that we too are alive in Him.

But today I heard the Lord ask me, “Are you living like it’s Saturday?”

It jolted me. Was I? Was I, a friend of the crucified One, so saddened by losses and weighed down by the perplexities of life, living as if it were only Saturday? Was I living a pre-Sunday life?

I KNOW BETTER.

I had to come to terms with the Truth: It’s not Saturday anymore!

Jesus conquered death. He conquered sin. He conquered pain. He is the Way-Maker when there is no way; He is the Quiet in every storm; He is the Light that overcame darkness—and He is my God. He who crushed the serpent’s head and pulled me out of self-destruction can walk me through torrential winds or crashing waves to the other side—Safely. Unscathed. Strengthened in hope and in faith.

I’ve made up my mind. I refuse to live like it’s Saturday ever again. For me, it’s Sunday now.

Dorothy

Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God…When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.” (Colossians 3:1, 4).

© 2018, Dorothy Frick; reposted 2019

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April Fools

Posted by on Apr 1, 2019 in My testimony | Comments Off on April Fools

I was water baptized 44 years ago tonight, April Fools Day. I was thinking back on that event in my life and wanted to repost what I wrote about it a few years ago.

Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you thinks that he is wise in this age, he must become foolish, so that he may become wise.1 Corinthians 3:18

never would have planned it this way, but I was water baptized on April Fools’ Day. The last thing I would have ever dreamed of doing was to make such a serious act of commitment to Jesus on a day associated with pranks and practical jokes. But God sees things differently.

I had been saved barely three months; yet every time I turned on my newly-discovered Christian radio station, all I heard them talking about was water baptism. I soaked it up, but was utterly perplexed. How do I get someone to baptize me? I pondered. I didn’t go to a traditional church; my church was the Tuesday/Thursday night dorm Bible study. My pride was kicking in—I didn’t want to be laughed at for my ignorance about baptism—but nevertheless, I sought out a seasoned saint in the dorm. She was the ripe old age of 21 and about as learned as Moses. Sheepishly, I asked her to explain it to me.

Instead of teasing me for my limited knowledge, her face lit up. She got on the phone with Rick, the leader of our Bible study, and said, “We’re having baptism tonight. Get everything ready!”

The only problem: I was mortified that it was April Fools’ Day! Wouldn’t I dishonor God and open Him up to ridicule if—of all days—I was baptized on April Fools? I almost backed out.

When my wise counselor perceived my dilemma, she assured me that God would not be offended if I got baptized on April first. In fact, she shared, I was obeying Scripture—I was allowing myself to be foolish so that I could become truly wise (see 1 Corinthians 3:18). It was settled. I was getting baptized—that very night.

This was the first of many baptisms I attended while in college; every one of them was an event full of love, joy, camaraderie, and the first blush of commitment to Jesus Christ as new believers obeyed the command to be baptized in the name of Jesus.

Before I was saved I had watched this motley crew of Christians trek back to the dorm more than once after water baptisms late at night—that’s how I knew who the believers in the dorm were when I needed them later on—and here I was—on April Fools’ Day, 1975, doing the same thing. Who would have thought?

The group of fifteen or so of us hiked down to the rock quarry across campus. Some of the guys had gone ahead of us to build a huge bonfire on the bank. Several of the ladies were carrying towels and blankets. I invited three very special friends who didn’t attend our Bible study to witness my “burial and resurrection”—Linda, who was unsaved; Miriam, who was from a prominent family in her mainline Protestant church; and Carla, who was backslidden.

Rick shared on water baptism from the Bible: “Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:4). By the light of the fire, I saw joy and expectation on everyone’s faces—except for Linda’s, Miriam’s, and Carla’s. Their heads hung low; none of them gave eye contact either to Rick or to me.

It was time. Around 8:30, with stars twinkling in the sky, I followed Rick (another Moses-type to me—he was nearly 22 and had been saved most of his life) into the quarry. The water took my breath away, it was so cold, but the joy I was experiencing warmed me to the core.

“Dorothy, have you received Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?” Rick asked.

“Yes,” I responded.

“Then in front of these witnesses, I baptize you in the name of Jesus!” And with that, he dunked me under the nearly-freezing water and pulled me back up.

On the bank, I heard whooping and hollering, followed by guitar and the sound of loud, jubilant singing:

“Break forth into joy, oh my soul! Break forth into, oh my soul!

For in the presence of the Lord, there is joy forevermore;

Break forth, break forth into joy, oh my soul!”

As Rick and I emerged from the water, both of us were greeted with blankets wrapped around our shoulders; and as I stood by the fire, I received joyful hugs all around. Everyone was beaming ear to ear, worshiping around the crackling bonfire—everyone, that is, except Linda, Miriam, and Carla. All three of them—the unsaved, the religious, and the backslider—were weeping uncontrollably.

God was touching each one of them, very deeply, that April Fools night.

Linda got saved less than a year later, getting baptized in the quarry herself in the dead of winter when we had to break the ice covering it—and now she is a prominent businesswoman in my area; Miriam wrote me a beautiful letter describing how the Scriptures came alive to her that night and how “newness of life” meant something new to her now, as well; and Carla went on to return to her first love, Jesus—and she has been winning souls to Him ever since.

As for me, I was through with trying to appear wise. I realized that the wisdom of the world was absolute foolishness to God; if I truly wanted to be wise, I must become foolish first—with the foolishness of God. And then—and only then—would I become wise.

And that’s no April Fools.

Dorothy

© 2016, Dorothy Frick

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When tempers flare in cultural dialogue

Posted by on Jan 24, 2019 in Daily walk | Comments Off on When tempers flare in cultural dialogue

In light of the recent conflict concerning the Covington Catholic School boys and all of the intense, often hugely judgmental dialogue that has followed, I posted this verse and two-sentence comment on Facebook.

“Because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” Matthew 24:12-13

This applies to all of us. Guard your hearts out there.

Many people “liked” the post; some commented and expressed their exhaustion with our cultural conversational warfare. In response to the back and forth, I posted this:

“We must all do our best to apply this warning of Jesus to our own thoughts, attitudes, and conversations with everyone. The temptation to hate those who think differently than we is cleverly coated with a sense of self-righteousness…but to resist that, we’ve got to be shrewd as serpents, harmless as doves.

“The thing that hit me about our current Catholic kid story is when I recognized that BOTH SIDES of the commenters have similarly intense strong convictions–right or wrong–AND similar responses of offended self-righteousness toward one another! I saw that for us to be effective, we must learn to navigate NOT ONLY the issues in question, but also our own sense of being slighted, disrespected, or being misunderstood. And when attacked, it matters not which side of an issue we are on, if our RESPONSE is from wounded ego, hurt feeling, offense, or bruised pride, we aren’t going to effect the change that we so desire to bring about…we will do the opposite of what we want: We will push people further into what we perceive as delusion. Goes for both sides!

“That’s why I believe many progressives are currently shooting themselves in the foot…they are reacting so strongly, so vehemently, and so judgmentally. People who don’t take sides are really getting their fill of that (think Kavanaugh confirmation era viciousness) and tend to want to side with the less “spit-spewing” side. Those of us who embrace a more conservative, traditional worldview can be every bit as tempted to react with similar vehemence, judgmentalism, and dogged self-righteousness. However, when we speak our peace in love, are patient when wronged, honest, bold, yet never vicious, we can watch what God will do. He will help us!”

Praying that each of us press on to “study to show ourselves approved” not only in CONTENT but also in DELIVERY.

Dorothy

© 2019, Dorothy Frick

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