Friday, July 23, 2010

I received this email today and thought I would share it with anyone who may read my blog.

I haven't read Rick Warren's book or done the Purpose Driven Life Study yet, but, I think he is a pretty amazing man and I think His love for God and his family and his ministry is wonderful.

You will enjoy the new insights that Rick Warren has, with his wife now
having cancer and him having 'wealth' from the book sales. This is an
absolutely incredible short interview with Rick Warren, 'Purpose Driven
Life ' author and pastor of Saddleback Church in California .

In the interview by Paul Bradshaw with Rick Warren, Rick said:
People ask me, What is the purpose of life?
And I respond: In a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were
not made to last forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven.

One day my heart is going to stop, and that will be the end of my body--
but not the end of me.

I may live 60 to 100 years on earth, but I am going to spend trillions of
years in eternity. This is the warm-up act - the dress rehearsal. God wants
us to practice on earth what we will do forever in eternity..

We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that out, life
isn't going to make sense.

Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you're just
coming out of one, or you're getting ready to go into another one.

The reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than
your comfort; God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in
making your life happy.

We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that's not the goal of
life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the
toughest, with my wife, Kay, getting cancer.

I used to think that life was hills and valleys - you go through a dark
time, then you go to the mountaintop, back and forth. I don't believe that

Rather than life being hills and valleys, I believe that it's kind of
like two rails on a railroad track, and at all times you have something good
and something bad in your life..

No matter how good things are in your life, there is always something bad
that needs to be worked on.

And no matter how bad things are in your life, there is always something
good you can thank God for.

You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your problems:
If you focus on your problems, you're going into self-centerdness, which
is my problem, my issues, my pain.' But one of the easiest ways to get rid
of pain is to get your focus off yourself and onto God and others.

We discovered quickly that in spite of the prayers of hundreds of
thousands of people, God was not going to heal Kay or make it easy for her-
It has been very difficult for her, and yet God has strengthened her
character, given her a ministry of helping other people, given her a
testimony, drawn her closer to Him and to people.

You have to learn to deal with both the good and the bad of life.
Actually, sometimes learning to deal with the good is harder. For
instance, this past year, all of a sudden, when the book sold 15 million
copies, it made me instantly very wealthy.

It also brought a lot of notoriety that I had never had to deal with
before. I don't think God gives you money or notoriety for your own ego or
for you to live a life of ease.

So I began to ask God what He wanted me to do with this money, notoriety
and influence. He gave me two different passages that helped me decide what
to do, II Corinthians 9 and Psalm 72.

First, in spite of all the money coming in, we would not change our
lifestyle one bit.. We made no major purchases.

Second, about midway through last year, I stopped taking a salary from
the church.

Third, we set up foundations to fund an initiative we call The Peace Plan
to plant churches, equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, and
educate the next generation.

Fourth, I added up all that the church had paid me in the 24 years since
I started the church, and I gave it all back. It was liberating to be able
to serve God for free.

We need to ask ourselves: Am I going to live for possessions?

Am I going to be driven by pressures? Guilt? Bitterness? Materialism? Or
am I going to be driven by God's purposes (for my life)?

When I get up in the morning, I sit on the side of my bed and say, God,
if I don't get anything else done today, I want to know You more and love
You better. God didn't put me on earth just to fulfill a to-do list. He's
more interested in what I am than what I do.

That's why we're called human beings, not human doings.
Happy moments, PRAISE GOD.
Difficult moments, SEEK GOD.
Quiet moments, WORSHIP GOD.
Painful moments, TRUST GOD.
Every moment, THANK GOD..

2 Corinthians 9 (taken from The Literary Study Bible ESV)
1.Now it is superfluous for me to write to you about the ministry for the saints. 2. for I know your rediness, of which I boast about you tothe people of Macedonia, saying that Achaia has been ready since last year. And your zeal has stirred up most of them. 3. But I am sending the brothers so that our boasting about you may not prove empty in this matter, so that you may be ready, as I said you would be. 4. Otherwise, if some Macedonians come with me and find that you are not ready, we would be humiliated-to say nothing of you- for being so confident. 5. So I thought it necessary to urge the brothers to go on ahead to you ad arrange in advance for the gift you have promised, so that it may be ready as a willing gift, not as an exaction.
6. The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly and whoever sows bountifully will reap bountifully. 7. Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under copulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. 8. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work. 9. As it is written, "He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures forever."
10. He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. 11. You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God. 12. For the ministry of this service is not only supplying the needs of the saints but is also overflowing in many thanksgivings to God. 13. By their approval of this service, they will glorify God because of your submission flowing from your confession of the gospel of Christ, and the generosity of your contribution for them and for all others, 14. while they long for you and pray for you, because of the surpassing grace of God upon you. 15. Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

Psalm 72 (taken from The Literary Study Bible ESV)
Give the king your justice, O God, and your righteousness to the royal son!
2. May he judge your people with righteousness. and your poor with justice!
3. Let the mountains bear prosperity for the people, and the hills, in righteousness!
4. May he defend the cause of the poor of the people, give deliverance to the children of the needy, and crush the oppressor!

5. May they fear you while the sun endures, and as long as the moon, throughout all generations!
6. May he be like rain that falls on the mown grass, like showers that water the earth!
7. In his days may the righteous flourish, and peace abound, till the moon be no more!

8. May he have dominion from the sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth!
9. May desert tribes bow down before him, and his enemies lick the dust!
10. May the king of Tarshish and of the coastlands render him tribute; may the kings of Sheba and Seba bring gifts!
11. May all kings fall down before him, all nations serve him!

12. For he delivers the needy when he calls, the poor and him who has no helper.
13. He has pity on the weak and the needy, and saves the lives of the needy.
14. From oppression and violence he redeems their life, and precious is their blood in his sight.

15. Long may he live; may gold of Sheba be given to him! May prayer be made for him continually, and blessings invoked for him all the day!
16. May there be abundance of grain in the land; on the tops of the mountains may it wave; may it's fruit be like Lebanon; and may people blossom in the cities like the grass of the field!
17. May his name endure forever, his fame continue as long as the sun! May people be blessed in him, all nations call him blessed!

18. Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who alone does wondrous things.
19. Blessed be his glorious name forever; may the whole earth be filled with his glory! Amen and Amen!
20. The prayers of David, the son of Jesse, are ended.

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