Friday, July 3, 2015

Win a Book to Help You Gain Emotional and Spiritual Freedom

In the USA, July 4th means we celebrate political freedom, religious liberty, and cookouts.

Too many people--not only in the USA, but around the globe--need freedoms of another kind: emotional and spiritual freedom. 

That's why I'm celebrating my dear friend, Diana Savage's*** newest book, 52 Heart Lifters for Difficult Times by sharing a chapter and giving away a signed copy for one blessed winner! Read to the end to discover how you can win...

God’s Special Effects
You were taught . . . to be made new in the attitude of your minds.
Ephesians 4:22–23 (NIV)

     As a mother and her young daughter sat buckled in their seats near the airplane’s wing, the mom explained that they were flying over the ocean. “Can you see the water?” she asked.

     “No,” said the girl, peering out the window at the wing. “But I can see the diving board.”

     When the people of Israel escaped Egypt after 430 years of slavery only to be caught between the Red Sea and Egypt’s army, I wonder if some of them felt like looking for a diving board.

     Our pastor once referred in his sermon to that historical time as he got ready to show a video clip from the classic Ten Commandments. “Don’t laugh,” he said. “Although the scene is a serious one, I had to hold back a chuckle when I previewed it.”
     
     We gazed expectantly at a screen above the platform. Charlton Heston appeared in his famous role of Moses, having just led the descendents of the patriarch Jacob (Israel) out of Egypt. But now the people were trapped “between the devil and the deep blue sea.”

     I’ve always loved director Cecil B. DeMille’s interpretation of immense saltwater walls on either side of an ocean-floor path. However, viewing the movie clip nearly six decades after its release, I could see why the pastor was amused. Computer-generated imagery (CGI) is vastly superior to the special effects available back in 1956.

     I’m glad the message of hope hasn’t changed, however. God still delivers his people when we call upon him. The Israelites had already seen their divine deliverer use plagues to convince the Egyptians to let them go. But the Israelites’ first bump on freedom’s road revealed how deeply mired they were in a victim mentality. Instead of believing that God would rescue them again, they were ready to hightail it right back into bondage. They whined to Moses:

          Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die?
          What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn’t we say to you in Egypt,
          “Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians”? It would have been better for us to serve
           the Egyptians than to die in the desert!     (Exodus 14:11–12).

     God created an escape route in spite of their bad attitudes, and from the safety of the opposite shore, the former slaves watched the mysteriously piled-up water collapse on top of Pharaoh’s army. In response, God’s people danced and sang songs of praise.

     Three days later, the two million or so adults and children, along with their livestock, faced a second dilemma involving water. This time, instead of having too much, they had too little. But rather than appeal to almighty God, the people ramped up their complaints. Still, the Lord provided drinkable water. Their faith failed again a short time later when they ran out of food. And so it went. Throughout their trek, they always found something to grumble about. Their fears and their failure to trust God’s provision kept them out of the Promised Land for 40 years.

     Today, our spiritual journey can be just as difficult. Each of us encounters darkness, storms, washouts, steep inclines, temperature extremes, and even predators. We can do little about external elements, but we can remain in control of our attitudes. It boils down to this: Will we choose to trust God, or will we complain? The wise choice, of course, is to trust in the Lord, even when enemies advance. God responds to our faith, often with such spectacular miracles of provision that CGI pales by comparison.

     And that’s even more exciting than diving boards on airplanes.

Almighty God, thank you for freeing me from spiritual slavery, for guiding me on my wilderness trek, and for supernaturally meeting my needs, time and again. Help me to maintain right attitudes so we won’t miss out on the land of delights that you’ve promised. Amen. 
© 2015 by Diana Savage. All rights reserved.

*** Diana Savage has written or contributed to 11 books, including two Chicken Soup for the Soul volumes, and has published hundreds of articles, devotions, blogs, and columns. She directs the annual Northwest Christian Writers Renewal conference near Seattle. Find her "Wild About Helping You Succeed" website here: Diana Savage Writer... Editor...Speaker


If you'd like to win an autographed copy of 52 Heart Lifters for Difficult Times, filled with uplifting, witty stories like the one you just read, please:

1. leave a comment telling me your best secret for trusting the Lord when you're sorely tempted to complain, and

2. your email address, so we can contact you if you win.

The contest will go through 11:59 p.m. Thursday, July 9th. I will draw one winner and post his or her name here on Tuesday, July 14th.

But if you simply can't wait that long and want to purchase a copy, buy it here: 52 Heart Lifters for Difficult Times


13 comments:

  1. This hit me in my mind and heart today! I have been grumbling, even pouting, and realize I need to praise Him and trust. He is refining me on this wilderness trek for sure! When feeling heartache and doubt, I find I do reach out to my girlfriends who are spiritual mentors to me. With their unwavering faith, they lift me up, and continue to teach me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is a great tip, Lynn! Thanks for sharing it. Others do give us a more balanced perspective on life, and often pull us up from the pit when we can't manage to pull ourselves!

      Delete
  2. I have had a day where my computer would not power up.I am learning not to grumble about different things, (a change for me.) I went across town to see a gentleman connected to our church to see what he could find out about my computer. Half-way across town, I had a conversation with God. "God, I really don't want to buy an new computer. This one is only three years old." When I go to his house, he took off the battery and replaced it with a bit of force. Then he turned it over and punched the button and it came on. He cleaned the contact points on the battery and the computer housing. I learned a great lesson here. I don't have to go off half-cocked and then regret my actions.

    cll4him@sbcglobal.net

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good for you, Quiet Spirit! You are a great example to all of us.

      Delete
  3. Life brings times when there can be complaining and it just brings me down when I start it in my head then think of complaining out loud. I pray as the Holy Spirit nudges me. Thinking better thoughts, forgiving the incident in my head and moving on. We can all be like the Israelites, all human, wanting our needs to be met now instead of stepping out in faith and waiting on the Lord, in His time! What we want isn't always what He wants for us. It's not all about me!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. snapperbeckatgmaildotcom is my email.

      Delete
    2. Great tip, Becky. Thanks for sharing!
      Jen

      Delete
  4. Hi Jeanette! This passage from the book is wonderful! I'll have to check out this author's website. Thank you for introducing her to us!
    My best secret to trust the Lord is to realize that I have no idea what I'm doing half the time. How can I trust myself? Even though the times may look bad, if I was in charge, they'd definitely look worse!

    My email is: ceil@ceilryan.com
    Thanks Jeanette!!
    Ceil

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ceil: I am laughing out loud at this! So wise and true. Thanks for sharing,
      Jen

      Delete
  5. Jen, thanks for hosting Diana today. It's great to get to know her a bit through these wise words! Thanks to you both for offering the giveaway. :)

    Blessings,
    Karen
    klange61AThotmailDOTcom

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for posting this give-away and introducing me to your friend Diana. I love to listen to music or sing praises when I am having a difficult time. And if I am fearful or worrying about something, I repeat scripture that has comforted me over the years, "When I am afraid, I will trust in Him." Oh, and I recall the first time I flew too I was afraid. A woman at the chapel in Berlin, Germany told me not to be afraid to remember that "underneath are the everlasting arms." That's another scripture I rely on. annknowles03ATaolDOTcom

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ann. These are wonderful ideas to keep our minds focused on God!
      Jen

      Delete

Oh, it's YOU! I'm so happy to see you here today, and look forward to reading your comments.