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Excerpts from Driving Through Painville

Romans 5: 3-4 teaches us that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance produces character and character produces hope. If we are consistently trying to bypass pain/suffering then we may miss the blessings that follow. The trials and tribulations of life will wound us and cause pain. My father was part of what has been referred to as the greatest generation. He experienced the hardships of growing up during the Great Depression and fighting in World War II. God gave him and many others of this period the ability to persevere. The character that comes through perseverance produces people of integrity and principle. Principles are things that are worth fighting and sometimes dying for. Integrity is the actions that we take when no one is looking. If we consistently seek out the bypass for Painville then we become a people that lack perseverance and character.

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Meek Is Not The Same As Weak

Meek is not the same as weak. Kevin Durant is a not a weak or timid basketball player. He is confident and courageous in his duties on the court. He does, however, know who he is and where his real worth and identity come from. He is a solid devoted Christian believer that knows that all gifts and praises go to his Maker and Creator. From that knowledge and foundation he walks out his life with meekness and humility. We need more courageous men to step up to the plate and walk out the (that) Godly role model. You don’t have to be a sports hero to be a role model. You don’t even have to be perfect. You may be in a place of realizing you have failed regarding your sexual sin. You can still be that humble role model. You can model to those around you what true restoration looks like. We really don’t get to choose whether we are a role model or not. We do get to choose whether we are a Godly one or a worldly one. Choose.

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Relapse Prevention

This is a sample of a phone conversation I have had several times throughout the years.

“Hello, my name is Mary Smith and my husband is Joe Smith. I don’t know if you remember my husband but you did an intensive with him about a year ago.”

“Sure, I remember him. How is he doing?”

“Well, he was doing great after he came back from visiting with you but over time he has just gone back to being his old self.”

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Grief and Shame as Motivation to Overcome

I remember a colleague of mine at a treatment center I worked at years ago commonly made the comment that we don’t see enough people blushing or weeping over their sin. Weeping is a direct representation of repentance because of one’s sinful nature and the need for God to fill one’s heart. We should allow ourselves to feel the pain of what our sin has done. That is part of the grieving process as well. We should be able to grieve over the consequences of what sin has done. If all you do is smile after you realize what sin has done you haven’t been truly honest. This weeping is part of the shame process from original sin.

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Stealing Seeds

My wife, Diana, was reading her Bible in our backyard and she shared with me what she remembers from a mentor we both shared in our lives at one time, “Satan can’t snatch you of God’s hand. But he can steal your seed if you let him.”

The very best place to receive seeds, be planted in one’s heart, is from the Scriptures themselves. The enemy is always there to try to steal away the blessing of our seed. Jesus spoke a parable to a large crowd and later explained it to the apostles. His explanation is in Luke 8:11-15:

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