Enjoy the present.

Hey there BCU Family!

For this post, you have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study!

This “adulting” thing I have to do keeps me pretty occupied. I praise God and am grateful that I have a full-time job, church, family and the BCU ministry (essentially run pretty full time). In between all that, I like to see friends and family, minister to people, keep house, eat, read and especially rest and sleep.

In fact, I look forward to the holidays and precious few and far in between days off to just. do. nothing. I’m the kind of vacation person that LIKES to stay home, with no plans, no clock to punch, no set time do, be, or go anywhere. I call that, “the slow hurry.” Those are my million dollar days.

It just so happens this year, I have a week off coming up and while a couple of those days are already spoken for, I can rest in the remainder of the time being mine. As I was talking to my friend Kenya about it, I started to lament about my life AFTER my time off was finished. It would be MONTHS before my next big block of time was coming up! I started thinking about how long those days would be and how hard it would be to get through them. During those days, there was nothing to look forward to, until the next vacation. The Lord checked me on that.

“Enjoy the present.”

We have a habit of saving the anticipation-filled phrases like, “I can’t wait…” or “I am looking forward to…” for special occasions, while saying, “I’ll be glad when this day is over”, or “it is Monday…already”, or “I wish this day would hurry up and come…” with dread and disdain. We wish away the days, complain the about the time we have to spend at work, going to and from work, doing chores, shopping, cleaning, running kids around—we even complain about the time we give God. Why does the message take so long? He prays too long! A second service? Why?

When we FINALLY get to the free time we couldn’t wait for, how are we really spending it? Looking our loved ones in the face, studying their words and actions—conversing intently? Or are our faces glued to our devices, while we catch snippets and fragments of what is being said? I’d venture to guess that many of us do the latter. Keeping that in mind…

What if….we were intentional about rejoicing in the day the Lord made (which would be all of them, including Monday)… See Psalm 118:24 

What if... instead of complaining about our jobs and wishing the day away, we payed attention to the people we work with for an opportunity to bless, encourage or be a witness to them—even if it’s demonstrated through our attitudes and actions. See Matthew 5:16. 

What if.. rather than complain about the job God blessed us with, we take all the tasks, including those those mundane meetings, the clean-up, the less glamorous parts that have to be done, along with tasks we enjoy, keeping in mind, that we work unto God as not as unto men. See Colossians 3:23-24. 

What if… we practiced being content..even if things are not where we want them to be at the moment? The spouse you prayed for? Thank God. The kids you asked God for? Thank God. The spouse you are waiting for? Thank God.  Struggling to pay bills? Thank God. We have the money to pay the bill? Thank God. It’s important that we live in the state of contentment. See Philippians 4:11. 

What if…we prepared our hearts, minds and bodies for the services we attend—looking for the Lord to bless, heal, deliver, save and set free in a mighty way? What if we arrived rested, full, prayed up and ready to see what we can do to be a blessing—and excitedly anticipate what God has for us? See Psalm 133:1. 

What if...prayed fervently (rather than half-way and sarcastically) that the Spirit of the Lord rest upon the hearts of the people during service, so much so, that people walk out differently than how they came in? And rather than complain about the time, we rejoiced in the fact that people are being blessed? See James 5:16 (b). 

BCU Family, whether we like it or not, our days are numbered. In Psalm 90:10, Moses said that we the days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years. Threescore is 60, add another 10 and that’s 70. So, fourscore is 80. Of course, some live longer and some shorter—that’s all in God’s hands. No, we don’t know when we’ll leave here- but what we can do, with the help of the Lord, while we are living for Him, is to enjoy our days to the fullest.

Ecclesiastes 5:18 reminds us, “it is good and comely for one to eat and to drink, and to enjoy the good of labor that he takes under the sun all the days of his life, which God gives, for it is his portion.”

Enjoy the present. Amen? Amen.


BCU Fam, I really have to be intentional about not rushing through my days and wishing my time away. I had to catch myself just this weekend–I was thinking “I need to hurry through this chore to get my free time”. Rather than rush through my schedule, the Lord reminded me to take my time. I confess, I was blessed in the process, and got home in plenty of time to rest.  We often miss how we can be a blessing and God blessing us, because we are operating in chronos time  (keeping a schedule), versus being present in kairos time (God’s opportune moments). So, how do you do in this area? Is the struggle real? Let me know in the comments section so we can continue our chat.

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

BCU apparel is BACK!

BCU Quad Two Tees!

Show your love for all things Quad 2 with our BCU pop-o’-color OR classic black and white 100% cotton soft-spun tee! Based off our Time Management Periscope series, these shirts are both an encouragement and a conversation starter–—-all around allowing God to plan your day! Treat yourself and someone you love to a nifty BCU shirt today! | Available in S-3XL| Add $3.00 for the BCU logo sleeve print | Add $2.00 for 2XL; $3.00 for 3XL | Indicate size, style (color or B&W) and logo sleeve print, (if desired) in the PayPal notes section | Price (outside of logo and 2 and 3XL sizes) includes shipping and handling | A TRiley Design|

$25.00

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Quad Two Crew Color
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#Quad2Crew black & white
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Optional: available with the BCU logo on the sleeve! (add $3.00 to purchase price).
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Rear view

Thank you for your support!

Love,

BCU

#StayOnTheWall

BCU Resource: complimentary stewardship/time management document

Hey there BCU Fam!

As many of you know, we are currently studying time management in our live Periscope study held on Thursday nights at 8:05pm on Periscope/BlenCouragesU. On this Thursday, (December 14, 2017), we’re planning* to talk practically about managing our time better with the “Eisenhower” quads, updated with Scripture and a little BCU flavor! 🙂 You are MORE than welcome to join us!

Feel free to download the .PDF file>> BCU Quad Matrix Dec 2017 <<ahead of our class, so you can print and fill it on as we go, or you can take notes and fill it in later. If you miss the class, check the BCU Facebook page for the replay, or it may be posted here, as well.

If you need a different version of the Quad (i.e. Excel or Numbers document), just email Blen@BlenCouragesU.com with BCU Quad in the subject line and your information,  or, let me know on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, and we’ll get you hooked up!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

 

Love,

BCU

 

*The subject of the Periscope is subject to change, per the Lord’s kairos will. 🙂

 

 

P.S. Here is the filled in Quad>> BCU Quad Complete 2017<<

 

It’s about time….

Hey there BCU Fam!

As usual, you have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the the post blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study!

 

A while back I was scrolling through the BCU Instagram feed and saw this quote from Christian comedian Broderick E. Rice: “Early birds get more than just the worm; they get everything the latecomers aren’t willing to sacrifice for.” He lowered the “BOOM”, y’all! 😳

As I pondered that, back in my 20’s, I might have chuckled and kept moving. Fast forward a couple of decades, and I totally agree with what he said. Occasional tardiness, or something that can’t be helped (church service starts at 7pm and you get off work at the same time, you got a flat tire, you were ministering at church, etc..) is one thing, it is the habitual lateness that is the quagmire for most of us. Not only is non-punctuality extremely discourteous, it is stressful (for the offender and the offended) and most of all, it shows lack of stewardship of the precious commodity of time that God entrusts us with. I Corinthians 4:2 says that stewards have to be found faithful–and that means in all areas of our lives. Many times, we just need to manage our time better, with God’s help.

In doing some quick research, I ran across a post about tardiness written by Brett and Kate McKay–a snippet of the high points are below. While the post was intended to help our male population be on time, I believe this information is just as important for the ladies! Let’s dig into the highlight reel courtesy of TheArtOfManliness.com, as well as the added biblical checkpoints.

1) Being punctual shows your humility. That bumper sticker maxim: “Always late, but worth the wait” shows that tardiness and an overestimation of one’s worth sometimes go hand in hand. People will be glad to see you when you arrive, but they would have been gladder still had you come on time.

Biblical checkpoint: Proverbs 29:23 says, a man’s pride will bring him low, but honor shall uphold the lowly in spirit. 

2) Being punctual shows your respect for others. Being late is a selfish act, for it puts your needs above another’s. You want an extra minute to do what you’d like, but in gaining that minute for yourself, you take a minute from another, which is why….

3) Being late is a form of stealing. That’s a tough truth, but it’s a truth nonetheless. When you make others wait for you, you rob minutes from them that they’ll never get back. Time they could have turned into money, or simply used for the things important to them. In coming to meet you at the agreed upon hour, they may have made sacrifices – woken up early, cut short their workout, told their kid they couldn’t read a story together – and your lateness negates those sacrifices. If you wouldn’t think of taking ten dollars from another man’s wallet, you shouldn’t think of stealing ten minutes from him either. Being punctual shows you value time yourself, and thus wouldn’t think of depriving others of this precious, but limited resource.

Biblical checkpoint: Thou shall not steal (Exodus 20:15).

4) Being late strains your relationships. When you’re late in meeting other people, it makes them feel under-valued, that whatever you couldn’t pull yourself away from was more important or that they didn’t mean enough to you to warrant allotting sufficient time to arrive on schedule. The guest who flies in to see you feels like a dope standing at the airport alone, your date feels awkward sitting at the restaurant by herself, and your child feels abandoned as she waits with her teacher for you to arrive, all the other children having already been picked up from school.

Biblical checkpoint: Let nothing be done though selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than themselves (Philippians 2:3). 

5)Being punctual strengthens and reveals your integrity. If you tell someone that you will meet them at a certain time, you have essentially made them a promise. And if you say you’ll be there at 8:00, and yet arrive at 8:15, you have essentially broken that promise. Being on time shows others that you are a man [woman] of your word.

Biblical checkpoint: Lord, who shall abide in your tabernacle? Who shall dwell in your holy hill? He that swears to his own hurt and changes not (Psalm 15:1, 4). In other words, even if it hurts you, keep your word. 

6) Being late takes a toll on your life. Always running behind simply hurts you in all areas of your life. It results in lost opportunities: missing a plane, missing a meeting, missing an important part of a lecture, missing a wedding. It creates stress and can lead to car accidents and traffic tickets. It results in embarrassment and forces you to come up with excuses for why you’re late, putting a strain on your honesty. Basically, it makes your life more complicated; for men [women] seeking to simplify their lives, cultivating punctuality is an essential part of that path.

Biblical checkpoint: In telling  a parable about what the kingdom of heaven is likened to,  Jesus said there were ten virgins (Matthew 25) who were supposed to be ready to meet the Bridegroom at a particular time. Five of the ladies were wise enough to take oil with them and the other five did not. When the bridegroom called, the five wise ladies were ready with their lamps trimmed, while the five foolish were caught out without oil and had to go buy it. By the time they got back, the door was shut to them-the bridegroom said he did NOT know them. We could really go deep here, but suffice it to say being late causes you to miss out on things that could be life-threatening. 

Whew, BCU family–I’m a bit convicted here! Ephesians 5:16-17 says we should walk circumspectly not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil! That being said, ALL the points spoke to my tardy heart!

Please leave a comment below and tell us which punctuality points resonated with you.  In the meantime, let’s ask The Lord to help us to manage the time He so graciously gives us! I may do a follow-up to this post–I’m excited about implementing habitual timeliness! 😊

As a reminder, there are additional podcasts for you to enjoy–you are welcome to peruse the BlenCouragesU.com site 24-7!  You can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and iTunes.

Until we are together again,  thank you for stopping by and may God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you! #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU