I don't know if it will be in the order of the title...probably not.
In about 30 minutes the Gators tip off in the Sweet 16. Most analysists say that have it easy. Last night's games were 3/4 decided by 1 point, the other one by 3. I hope the Gators dominate. Then in about 3 hours, the Heels tip off. I have to switch my shirts when the Gator game is done. But, once they get around to playing each other it will all be GATORS!
I was excited this morning when I read my psalm for the day: Psalm 4 - one of my favorite. It is both convicting and encouraging.
4.1 God doesn't have to answer our prayer. To do so is an act of grace (free gift we can't earn, therefore we can't expect) on His part. Now, I'm very thankful that He always does in his sovereign plan.
4.2 - I love how the NAS puts this: "how long will you love what is worthless?" This phrase has always been convicting to me - it cuts me to the core everytime I read it. Think about the things you love in life, or what your life says about what you love...how worthless are those things?
4.3 - The Lord sets apart the Godly for Himself (Phil 1.6, Eph 2.10). We are distinct, set apart, distinguished - for HIS GLORY. For Himself. He uses us and grows us for Himself and according to His plan. Do we have our own agenda - or do we say that His agenda is more important than our own. I sent this to a friend of mine this morning. Even when things aren't necessarily going according to our plans (how we always thought life would turn out) we can hold steady to the fact that God has it all in control and He is not held in line by time.
4.5 - Offer the sacrifices of right living and trust in the Lord. These two phrases go together very well even as I think about it now. Kill/give up costly things to you in order to live a righteous life in God's sight - and trust in Him. When we give up things that are costly to us in this world (even to be popular, successful, happy, etc) - all to live a righteous life in the sight of our Redeemer - we have to trust in Him, because it goes against everything our culture says.
4.7 - More gladness than when grain and new wine abound. Now, I don't too excited about wine mainly because I don't like it. But, I do like food and good food at that. I get excited over a great meal and one that is cooked and presented in a grand way. But, even more so back then they celebrated with much wine and grain. God's gladness is more to us than that.
Now, onto the walking part. I love to walk. Especially on the beach. I remember my senior year of college and the 9 months I lived in St. Aug after I graduated, I would take a twice daily walk down to the beach (I lived right across from A1A, so I could do that easily). Once in the morning right when I got up (step out of the bed, into the tennis shoes) to see the sunrise (beautiful). Then a longer one at night for about 3-4 miles to enjoy the cool night breeze almost year round. I enjoy walking around UNC's campus and down to Flaherty from SEBTS's campus with my friend Sarah. I like walking around Lake Hollingsworth here in town and anytime in the fall when I can shuffle my feet through the leaves (this is much better in NC than in FL where not many leaves fall).
But...you know when walking gets hard? When I have to "walk in the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh". This is very difficult. It is something that must be at the forefront in my mind at all times. When I get impatient with drivers like I did today. When I want to argue or put my thoughts ahead of someone elses...I have to WALK again.
The term in Gal 5.16 means literally to "continually live your life" in the Spirit. And if you do that - then you won't have time to think about the flesh. Only the Spirit can help me do that - I surely can't. It is a minute by minute conscience thing we must do as believers.
As my tag on my profile says: living under grace. Even more so every day.