Be Deliberate

A few weeks ago, I mentioned that in a Bible Study message where Beth Moore was teaching on selfishness vs. sacrifice, she said, “We’re gonna be selfish, unless we deliberately purpose not to.” I have been thinking about integrity this week after reading Psalm 101. Verse 2 says “I will pay attention to the way of integrity.” (HCSB) The NIV says it this way, “I will be careful to lead a blameless life.” Finally, the NLT says, “I will give heed to the blameless way.”

PAY ATTENTION *** BE CAREFUL *** GIVE HEED

All of those three phrases are in line with the concept of being deliberate. What are some things to be deliberate about in your life? God is challenging me with this verse to “be deliberate to the way of integrity.” I’ve got to be deliberate to pay attention to my surroundings, be careful what I do and say, and give heed to the Holy Spirit. Some other areas that God is pressing on my heart to be deliberate about:

  • Being unselfish – yeah, still working on that since God brought that message to me 2-3 weeks ago. I have to deliberately purpose each day (uh, MOMENT) not to be selfish.
  • Being healthy/weight loss – if you’re also trying to be healthier and/or lose weight, I have to be deliberate about getting exercise, grocery shopping with Jesus (making the right choices starts at the store :-)) and planning my meals…
  • Keeping 1st things 1st – I have to be deliberate about keeping God 1st and at the center of my life, each day (again, each moment!). I have to be deliberate about guarding my time with Him, seeking Him, taking time to listen to Him and choosing to follow Him. After that, Kevin and the kiddos come next. Trust me, being deliberate about balancing this is oftentimes a juggling act, but if I’m not deliberate about keeping these three (God, Kevin, Kiddos) first – life quickly becomes a swirling toilet bowl of chaos. I don’t like-a chaos…

What are some other areas that you must be deliberate about pursuing:

  • Addictions – You have to flee in order to be free! Be deliberate about fleeing from an addiction.
  • Budget – Argh! – Staying on a budget! – Yes, we definitely have to BE DELIBERATE when it comes to a) living within our means and b) staying on a budget.
  • Quiet Time – Devotions, Bible Study – however you call it… if you want to have time with Jesus, it takes being deliberate about making the time and taking the time.
  • FiLl In ThE bLaNk_____________________________

The next question is HOW? I believe God doesn’t lead us to change or work on something in our lives only to leave us hanging as to HOW we can do that.

  1. Give it to HIM – Seek HIM – Realize the POWER you have in Him – Matthew 6:33, Acts 1:8, 2 Cor. 12:9
  2. Start at HOME – Psalm 101:2b says, “I will live with integrity of heart in my house.” In this pursuit of integrity for me, it starts at home. I must act/pursue integrity at home with my hubby and my kiddos before I can act with integrity out “there”.
  3. HATE THE SIN – Whatever it is that is impeding your progress in whatever area, (ie. in the area of selfishness vs. sacrifice – my sin would be selfishness) hate it! Verse 3 says, “I hate the doing of transgression.” Hate selfishness, hate the addiction, hate the sin of being wreckless with money… Psalm 97:10, Amos 5:15
  4. Have a PLAN – If it’s weight loss/being healthier – lots of plans to choose from… (but don’t jump on a bandwagon… find one that someone has been successful with). Budgeting – ‘Course I would recommend Dave Ramsey or Money Matters. If it’s an addiction, get the help you need. If it’s starting a “quiet time”, choose a devotional to start, or a reading plan. What are you going to do when you’re bored? What are you going to do when you’re upset? EAT? DRINK? BUY? Think in advance how you will handle these situations. What are you going to do when you’re BUSY? Skip your time with God – PLAN it. Guard your time.
Above all, remember the words of Paul in Phil. 4:13 –
“I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME!”
With HIM, you/I can do it!
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