TEMPTATIONS

Have you experienced temptations?

The Nibble Kettle in the picture above was a great temptation to me as a child.

Truthfully, it still is if it has my mother’s homemade Chex party mix in it!

Even today when I get the opportunity to visit my parents, I always check to see if the Nibble Kettle has Chex party mix in it,

The temptation was so strong as a child that I would sneak out to the fireplace where it was kept once my parents thought I had already gone to bed and steal pretzels from the mix.

As an adult I now favor the cashews and the wheat Chex but still enjoy the pretzels.

What does any of this have to do with our weekly study in Joel?

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JUDGMENT

judgment

In the picture above which words describe a positive judgment?

Which words describe a negative judgment?

When you read or hear the word judgment what is your immediate emotional response to the word?

When have you used good judgment?

When have you used poor judgment?

When have you exercised judgment about another person?

How do you make a judgment about a person or an event?

What resources do you rely on to aid your judgment?

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FORTUNE

fortune

Most consider fortune to be materialistic wealth in some form or fashion.

  • What do you consider a fortune?
  • If you consider yourself as having a fortune, how did you obtain it?
  • Was your fortune inherited or did you build it on your own?
  • Have you ever lost a fortune?
  • Does this talk of material wealth make you uncomfortable or excited?
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CALL

worship

Looking up the word “call” in the Merriam-Webster dictionary indicates the word may be used as a verb or a noun.

Within these categories for use the examples for “call” are extensive:

  • Call for help
  • Call for an investigation
  • Call of an animal
  • Call by telephone
  • Call to show hand in a card game
  • Call a square dance
  • Call to pay respects
  • Call out a number
  • Call the roll
  • Call a sport
  • Call to testify
  • Call to mind
  • Call to duty
  • Call a meeting
  • Call to wake up
  • Call for an offense
  • Call off
  • Call a spade a spade
  • Call for
  • Call it quits
  • Call names
  • And so on…😊

We will examine closely today two more examples not included above:

the transitive verb: “call on: defined as:1 : to call upon Is there anyone you can call on in an emergency?; and the noun form defined as :: a divine vocation or strong inner prompting to a particular course of action often referring to as being called or a calling.

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ADJUSTING

adjusting

The year 2020 was certainly a year of adjusting our gears.

Now as we head into 2021, we will still be adjusting our gears

Truthfully, adjusting gears is a normal part of everyday life.

We age every year and face different physical, mental, and emotional adjusting.

We have adjusting to do if we start dating, get married, adopt a pet, birth, or adopt a child, lose a loved one to death, and a myriad of other relationship activities with friends and blood relatives.

Then there is adjusting to a new home whether upsizing or downsizing.

Changing jobs or a career involves adjusting too.

What about adjusting one’s spiritual understanding?

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A TURNING POINT

Holy Spirit

It was Christmas day.

I do not recall my exact age but guesstimate I was in upper grade school.

The rest of the family had dispersed leaving me by myself.

I was sitting in the living room surrounded by the gifts I had received from my family.

Everything I had asked for had been received.

Yet, I was disillusioned.

My mother happened to come down the hallway that led to the living room and noticed me.

She quietly sat down beside me and asked why I seemed disappointed.

I do not recall my exact response to her at the time.

But I have never forgotten that feeling.

The feeling of getting everything I asked for yet sensing an emptiness.

Have you ever experienced a sense of emptiness after receiving something you wanted or even needed?

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ARE YOU CONVINCED?

convinced

What does it take for you to be convinced?

Are you someone who needs to do extensive research on your own before you will accept something as true?

Or are you convinced because of who you initially heard something from?

One time in a discussion group a fellow student of mine exclaimed in a frustrating tone that he was struggling with the varied readings we had been assigned. He felt both authors gave compelling arguments from the opposite point of view. He had felt convinced by each author until he read the next one.  

I noticed our professor, who was sitting in on the discussion, exhibited a quick little smirk with a twinkle in his eye before responding calmly, “Have you compared both author’s point of views with what scripture actually says on the topic?”

  • Have you ever been in that situation?
  • Uncertain of what you should be convinced about?
  • What is the most important thing to be convinced of according to scripture?
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