A Joyful Heart
by Jason Cruise
There is something unique in all of us that is reconnected to the soul during the Christmas season. I suspect for each of us it may be different, but Christmas has a way of bringing out in us all those things which get lost throughout the year. At least that's the case for me anyway.
"Confession is good for the soul" says the ancient axiom. I must confess that this year I have not been the best friend to those around me. I have not been nearly as available in mind, or body, as I should have been or as I wanted to be. I found myself spread far too thin as December approached, and in the thinning I found that I couldn't capture some of the mojo that the Christmas season normally brings to my life. Too many deadlines, projects, and all those other things that, for whatever reason, seemed too important in the moment to cause me to slow down and capture whatever it was that I was losing sight of at the time.
All of this is a feeble attempt at getting to my point: I want to thank you. All of you.
The Man Minute is read by thousands of people, and I have the joy of often getting very real, very sincere feedback from many of you who have told me that it helped you through a decision, or that a simple devotion on a Monday simply brought clarity from the Word of God as He spoke to your current situation.
So here it is December 19th and my heart spoke clearly telling me that I needed to spend time this week writing notes to my friends. Telling them how much I loved them, how thankful I am for their journey with me over the years, and how much I desperately needed them in my life. Journeys are better when you have someone to share them with, for no road is safe to walk alone.
I knew that my first thank you note had to go to you, for whatever measure I have sown into your life, the harvest has been equally as much mine as it has been yours because of the outlet you provide by giving me a place to share thoughts concerning the Lord who is the master of our souls.
I am thankful to share the road of following the man from Nazareth with you!
by Jason Cruise
Optics are not created as equals. Cheap scopes produce cheap results.
Inexpensive binoculars will perform inexpensively in the heat of the moment when
you need everything to be its best. This is, friend, simply a fact.
I learned something about great optics a long time ago ... the great ones gather far more light than a cheap imitation. You can look through my Epochs at first light or at dusk and you'll think you just purchased 30 minutes of daylight. In that instant you are able to see what you could have never seen on your own. To this day I still find myself amazed by this simple wonder.
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe. - Ephesians 1:17-20
For many years now, this short passage in the first chapter of Ephesians has
taken up deep roots in my spirit. I find myself going over it again and again in
my mind throughout the years, for it tells me that God is willing to grant me
the ability to see what I could never see on my own.
Paul's words inform me that I actually do have the ability to see with my
heart the things which I cannot see on the surface. Only the power of God can
give you polarized lenses that cut through the glare of life on the surface so
that you may see life as He wants you to see it.
The Extra Mile
by Jason Cruise
If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. - Jesus. Matthew 5:41 "... if someone forces you ..."
Ever feel forced into a journey? I've been there. You are forced to work with this person because the Human Resources guru who hired them was mentally out to lunch during the interview. Now they are on the team with you, and there you go. You're in the journey whether you like it or not.
Though it's just a few times a year, maybe you are forced to cross paths with a person in your family because they are, in fact, in the family.
It never ends. Life is full of militant weirdos, all around you, who draw you into their drama whether you like it or not. Inevitably you will cross paths with them in the journey.
The longer I live the more I see that Jesus' call on my life to go the extra mile is not nearly as much about the other person as it is about me. Yes, my going the extra mile is a living example of what it means to have grace extended to the one making things difficult. It is, perhaps, the greatest testimony one can offer ... to give grace. I get that.
I do believe, however, that going the extra mile is God's way of showing youmore about yourself, and more about His heart, that can only be found through mileage. He has a way, in the second mile, of exposing your own insecurities. His character seems to manifest itself in ways that never could have been manifested in the first leg of the trek.
How many times have you chosen to go the extra mile, only to find yourself further down the road of life much wiser and infinitely more full of grace, because you understand more about the person and their situation that you ever did beforehand? A relationship is about two people, not one, and it's in the context of relationships that God wants to show you more of Himself ... and you simply can't get that if you stop at Mile Marker 1.
Jason Cruise is the founder of Mission. Mission was created to "vindicate the fatherless" in a country known as Moldova. To learn more go to www.themissionvision.net Jason is a well known speaker traveling across the country sharing his love for Christ at wildgame dinners and conferences. Jason has created many valuable resources for the outdoorsmen to take them deeper into their walk with their Creator. These items include DVD's, Bibles, and Bible studies.