Sunday, 18 February 2018

C Columns

Real Man's Toolbox: Books to Motivate Change for the Better

By Leo Hellyer

 

Well, here we are entering into the year 2018, the beginning of another adventure. At the beginning of a new year many people make resolutions, things they want to change to hopefully improve themselves in the coming year. The problem with most resolutions is that they don’t last very long as we live our daily lives. I have a suggestion; why don’t we make a resolution that can truly have impact on us as individuals and can greatly improve the world around us?

 

My suggestion is that we resolve in 2018 to do what we can as individuals to bring the United States of America back to God. According to the United States Population Clock, the population of the United States is 326,357,661 (as I am writing this column). That is a huge number, and you are probably wondering, “How can my changes bring about healing to a nation of over 326 million people?” OK, I agree, this is a very big project, but we have to start somewhere. It is amazing how one little spark, under the right circumstances, can turn into a raging fire.

 

We need to do two very simple things to start with, which will start a spark of change in our nation. First, we need to delve into God’s Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth, the BIBLE, our Owner’s Manual. This one solitary book has all of the answers that we need for any situation that we might face. One verse out of the book of 2 Chronicles lays out the second simple thing that we need to do to spark change in our nation. In 2 Chronicles 7:14 the Lord told Solomon, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

 

In this one Scripture verse we have two promises from the Lord. He will forgive our sin, and heal our land. Along with these promises, there are four things that we need to do: humble ourselves, pray, seek God’s face, and turn from our wicked ways. There are four great books that address these four areas of our lives that we need to work on to start change and healing in our land.  

 

The late author and conference speaker Jerry Bridges uses the Beatitudes to reveal a pattern for humility in action in “The Blessing of Humility.”

 

In “Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God,” well­known pastor Timothy Keller examines the many facets of the powerful act of prayer. Keller also discusses ways to personalize prayer and how to establish an individualized practice of prayer.

 

As we read “Whole: Restoring What Is Broken in Me, You, and the Entire World” by Steve Wiens, he tells us, “There are things that need to change in me; they just won’t be changed by feeling bad about myself or trying really hard to fix them. That isn’t how wholeness works. Thejourney of wholeness is not a self­improvement project. It’s a journey of loss, trust, transformation, and eventually hope.”

 

Wiens takes us on a journey with him, exploring the facets of what it is to be broken and then to enjoy how it feels to be reassembled by God as a wonderful man or woman.

 

In “Disciplines of a Godly Man,” author Kent Hughes sparks a burning passion for godly discipline in the hearts of all who read it. Discipline is a subject that all of us need to hear aboutmore, but there are few authors or pastors who jump into the subject very often. Hughes goes for it. He will get your attention and help you move toward change and accountability in your personal life.

 

Change needs to start somewhere, and it can start in you and me. As we go about our daily lives, we need to direct our focus toward heaven and seek God’s guidance and direction. We need to follow the scriptures and assemble ourselves together as believers, while at the same time being in the world, and facilitating change. As long as God allows us to stay on this sphereof dirt and water, we need to be all about change. Every day we need to be doing what we can to become more and more Christlike. We also need to be stepping out of our comfort zone and sharing the truth that God has set out for this world — the truth that all have fallen short of the glory of God, but that God loves us so much that He provided a way that we can be saved, and live with Him for eternity.

 

If we are going to bring change to our nation, it needs to start in us. My prayer for each of us is that we will humble ourselves before God and seek godly change in our lives, and as we come closer and closer to God Almighty that we will bring others along on the journey by our words and actions. We all know that there needs to be change in our nation; we need to start that change today, in ourselves.

 

Leo Hellyer is a non­staff pastor with a local church and has been married to his wife Norma for 45 years. The couple volunteered with the Boise FamilyLife Ministry Team for 20 years. They are both employed by Boise Rescue Mission Ministries, Norma at City Light Home for Women & Children and Leo at River of Life Rescue Mission. Leo is also the President and Chief Firearms Instructor with Helping Hands Firearms Training LLC. If you have questions about Real Man’s Toolbox, or need other assistance, Leo may be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 208­-340­-5544.

 

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