KEEP THE FAITH | How to enter the game

Sometimes we can feel totally inadequate or inappropriate for a mission. Let me be very honest and transparent: I was horrible in sports as a kid. I dreaded it in all its forms, especially football. My lack of athletic prowess was obvious.

Sometimes we can feel totally inadequate or inappropriate for a mission.

Let me be very honest and transparent: I was horrible in sports as a kid. I dreaded it in all its forms, especially football. My lack of athletic prowess was obvious.

Enduring the public humiliation of always being the last chosen to play on a team just fueled my personal disdain for competitive sports. I was the ebony version of Funky Winkerbean’s friend Les in gym class!

Fast forward to four decades later: I was fortunate enough to dress and travel with the Youngstown State University football team as the team chaplain and coach of life ! Who would have imagined it? Certainly not me! This is a case where your gift and not your talent gives way to itself! I have been blessed and privileged to encourage young players on and off the pitch.

Then coach Eric Wolford felt that my lack of knowledge about the game was offset by my genuine concern for the team members. I really had no idea if the person was the captain or whatever. I was able to focus on the needs of the individual. Even today, former players can conjure a big smile from me when they call me “Coach Macklin!” “

So rest assured, if you’ve ever felt defeated before you even entered the game, just hold your head up and PRESS it! In the spirit of excellence, allow what you have been called to do to become a redemptive experience! Sometimes it’s enough to dress up and get into the game.

Laws of emotion

Sir Isaac Newton wrote the three laws of motion which govern how the motion of physical objects changes. As Newton used these concepts of movement in science, I can see application in looking at our emotional responses to situations. How we respond or react emotionally often influences the outcome of our experiences. Our emotions, whether positive or negative, are forms of energy.

First rule: An object will remain at rest or in a state of uniform motion unless that state is altered by an external force.

Second rule: Force is equal to the change in the amount of movement over time. Essentially, the rate of change is directly proportional to the amount of force applied. Phew, there are sermon nuggets that can be squeezed out of that thought!

Third rule: For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

While the other rules have spiritual implications, I want to outline this third concept with several answers to encourage you in situations you may encounter.

• When your circumstances try to steal your happiness, see James 1: 2: “Take it as a pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of all kinds. This is a verse that you might find particular to deal with. Why should we be joyful when we are going through trials? It is contrary to our natural reaction. Joy in difficult times is difficult, but with God anything is possible.

Matthew 8: 23-26 relates that the Master calmed the storms of storms on the Sea of ​​Galilee. Jesus got into the boat and began to cross the lake with his disciples. Suddenly a severe storm hit the lake, with waves breaking over the boat. However, Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went to wake him up, shouting, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown! Jesus answered, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith! Then he got up and berated the wind and the waves, and all of a sudden there was a great calm.

When we are close to God, it is possible to have peace and joy when it seems like the ship is about to sink. Trust him to be your lifeline.

• When you are unsure of what the future holds, think about Psalm 112: 7: “They won’t be afraid of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord. –

If we have joy through storms, we probably don’t worry too much about what’s to come. If we fear bad news, we worry about things that haven’t even happened yet. We can trust the Father to accompany us in what is to come.

• When you cannot focus on today, ponder the thoughts of Matthew 6:34: “So don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Every day has its own problems.

When you focus only on what lies ahead, you cannot see or deal with today’s issues. We recently purchased a cabinet that needed assembly. The instructions included a series of directions for accomplishing the task. We couldn’t skip steps and go all the way. We had to start with the first step and move on to the next. Our walk with God is like this process – one step at a time

• When you have run out of energy and are very exhausted, see Philippians 4:13: “I can do all of this through the One who gives me strength. “-

Running to smoke? It is important to keep this text in mind and on your heart to be rejuvenated. When you are short of strength and energy, there is good news for you: when we are at the weakest, he is at the strongest Allow God to increase your strength!

• When you are unsure of how to deal with your anxiety, read Philippians 4: 6-7: “Do not worry about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and request, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ. ”

The first sentence commands us to present our needs to God. But the second verse comes with an amazing promise: we will receive the peace of God, “which transcends all understanding.”

May her memory be a blessing

David Yonggi Cho, a South Korean Christian pastor, recently entered the Triumphant Church. He notably remarked once: “To die is easy, to live is difficult. It doesn’t take faith to die, it takes a lot of faith to live.

He was the co-founder of the Yoido Full Gospel Church of the Assemblies of God, which was once recognized as the largest congregation in the world, with over 800,000 members. Dr. Cho also founded Church Growth International, which is dedicated to teaching the principles of evangelism and church growth to pastors.

His inspiring messages will continue to radiate God’s truth by reminding us, “Faith and doubt will always exist together. To believe is to choose faith over doubt.

Happy birthday

Dorothy, my “Ride and Live” companion is celebrating her birthday this weekend. I often notice that she is my partner in marriage and ministry. Her name “Dorothy” means “Gift of / from God! and she really embraces his nickname in every sense of its meaning.

It has been said: “Behind every good man hides a good woman. However, great men like Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Barack Obama were fortunate enough to have great women by their side. Coretta, Betty, Eleanor and Michelle displayed a quiet and sometimes not-so-quiet strength that allowed these men to aspire to new heights. I don’t see myself as an equal to these men, however, I am easily balanced with a wonderful woman next to me who makes the ministry meaningful and manageable.

His smile, honesty and frankness are disarming and often misinterpreted. I was fortunate enough to support her quest as a non-traditional student to earn multiple degrees from Youngstown State University while working and raising a family. She has the wisdom, grace and beauty that complement her nature as a fierce protector and defender of her family. In truth, you’d be better off chasing the bear with a switch than attacking its family. Happy birthday to the best gift God gave me! His love and the grace of God allow me to keep the faith!

Reverend Lewis W. Macklin II is the senior pastor of Holy Trinity Baptist Missionary Church, chaplain of the Youngstown Police Department, chair of the Baptist Pastors Council and local coordinator of the African American Male Wellness Walk in the Mahoning Valley. He resides in Youngstown with Dorothy, his marriage and ministry partner. They share the love and joy of six children and seven grandchildren and their mischievous dog, Sir Winston.

– All Bible quotes are New Living Translation, unless otherwise noted.

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