Satan’s Convention

I heard a story the other day that made so much sense; I just had to share it with you.  In full disclosure, I’ve tried to find the author of this story, but everywhere I see this story posted it simply says author unknown.

The story is about how Satan keeps Christians from Christ and it goes something like this.

Satan called a worldwide convention. In his opening address to his evil angels, he said, “We can’t keep Christians from going to church. We can’t keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth. We can’t even keep them from conservative values. But we can do something else. We can keep them from forming an intimate, abiding experience in Christ. If they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken.”

“So let them go to church. Let them have their conservative lifestyles. But steal their time so they can’t gain that experience in Jesus Christ.”

“Here is how I want you to do this. Distract them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection throughout their day.”

“But how shall we do this?” shouted one of Satan’s angels.

“Keep them busy in the non-essentials of life and invent numerous schemes to occupy their minds” he answered. “Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, then borrow, borrow, borrow. Convince the parents to work 6 or 7 days a week, 10-12 hours a day, so they can afford their life-styles. Keep them from spending time with their children. As their families fragment, soon their homes will offer no escape from the pressures of work.”

“Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still small voice. Entice them to play the radio whenever they drive, to keep the TV going constantly in their homes. And see to it that every store and restaurant in the world plays music constantly. This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ. Fill their coffee tables with magazines and newspapers. Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day and invade their driving moments with billboards. Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, sweepstakes, mail order catalogs, and every kind of newsletter and promotional offering free products, services and false hopes.”

“Even in their recreation, let them be excessive. Have them return from it exhausted, distracted and unprepared for the coming week.”

“Don’t let them go out in nature. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, concerts and movies instead. And when they meet for fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with a troubled consciences and unsettled emotion.”

“Let them be involved in soul-winning. But crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek the power of Christ. Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family unity for the good of the cause.”

Well, in the end it was quite a convention. The evil angels went eagerly to their assignments, causing Christians everywhere to get busy, busy, busy and rush here and there.

Has the devil been successful in his scheme? You be the judge.

Today, I challenge you to take inventory of your life.  Does this story ring true for you?  I know it has for me from time to time, but the good news is that the moment we put our focus squarely on Jesus, Satan is powerless.

Maybe you’re not sure how to put your focus on Jesus.  If that’s you then I’d ask you to head on over to our www.RunforGod.com/PeacewithGod webpage to learn how to do just that.

If you like what you’ve read in this blog, then please like it, comment on it, but most importantly, share it.  You never know who might need to hear the simple truth of Jesus Christ today.

Friends, I love you, but more importantly God Loves You.

Now go tell someone about Jesus!

Mitchell

Outward Appearances

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For the past nine years I’ve coached a Junior Triathlon team and there’s always a hurdle that I must overcome with new athletes.  It’s the hurdle of, “Outward Appearances”.  You see many times with newer athletes, they are entering the sport with limited knowledge and what they consider sub-par equipment.  It never fails that when their first race rolls around and they enter the transition area for the first time, which is the place where you transition from the swim to bike and bike to run, that they feel inadequate.  They take a look around and many kids are rolling in on bikes that cost thousands of dollars, wearing apparel that looks as if it were custom made just for them, and speaking the triathlon lingo that seems to be a foreign language.

I always make sure that I’m close by to explain one principal.  “A fast bike and fast clothing makes a fast “LOOKING” athlete, not necessarily a fast athlete.  It’s the engine inside that makes a fast athlete not how they look on the outside.”

The principal of outward appearances holds true for many areas of life.  Kind of like the story of the seemingly homeless man that once walked into a bank and was just looking around.  Some of the bank staff politely asked him to leave only to find out the next day when he returned, that he was the owner of the bank.

We’ve all heard the cliché; “You can’t judge a book by its cover.”  It’s true, you can’t.  You can’t tell how fast a triathlete is by looking at their bike.  You can’t tell how much money someone has in the bank by the clothes they wear, and you can’t pick out a child of God simply by the image they portray.

I once had lunch with a gentleman who I’ve always considered a brother in Christ.  I’d known him for several years, and we were meeting about the possibility of him supporting Run for God financially.  We met for about an hour and just before leaving he told me that he believed in the mission of Run for God and would be happy to support our efforts but he needed me to understand that he was not a Christian.

What?  Why would this gentleman tell me this?  There is nothing about his outward appearance that say’s, “I’m not a Christian”.  He’s a great guy.  He goes to church.  He supports Run for God.  But he’s headed for an eternity of destruction without a drastic change on the inside.

First of all, pray for this gentleman, God knows who he is.  But secondly, understand what I believe God was showing me that day.  That is that there are people all around us that look fast, that look wealthy, and they look as if they are walking with Christ. But they’re spiritually bankrupt in need of a savior.

How is your walk with Jesus Christ?  Spiritually, are you the person who walks into the bank who looks broken, battered, and bruised but it’s only because you spend all day in the trenches saving your treasure for another day?  Or are you the person who walks in looking as if they’ve got it all together only to get up to the teller and realize that your account is overdrawn?

If that second person is you, then I’ve got great news!  Jesus Christ has enough spiritual currency for eternity and He wants to give it to you freely.  All you have to do is believe in Him, trust in Him, and turn your life over to Him, and it’s all yours.  If in fact that’s you, then I’m going to ask you to visit our Peace with God page right now to find out how to become a child of God.  Simply visit: www.RunforGod.com/PeacewithGod.

For those of you who do know where you’ll spend eternity, don’t just assume that those around you do. Ask questions.  Look them in the eyes and ask, “Do you know where you’ll spend eternity?”  If they do, then they’ll be happy you asked.  If they don’t then lead them to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, if your not comfortable with that, then ask them if you can watch four simple videos together and head over to our Peace with God page.

2 Timothy 1:7 says, “God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power….”.  If you love someone, if you care about someone, then ask them the powerful questions!

If you like what you’ve heard in this blog, then please like it, comment on it, but most importantly, share it.  You never know who might need to hear the simple truth of Jesus Christ today.

Friends, I love you, but more importantly God Loves You.

Now go tell someone about Jesus!

Mitchell

I Know Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan SubscribeNow this may come as a surprise to many of you, but I know who Michael Jordan is.  I know he was the greatest basketball player of all time. He wore #23 and played for the Chicago Bulls.  He went to college at the University of North Carolina from 1981-1984, and I know that he was 6’6 tall and weighed 216 pounds.

I know a lot about Michael Jordan.  I do believe he was the greatest basketball player of all time, but at the end of my life do you know what Michael Jordan will say about Mitchell Hollis should he be asked? He’ll say, “I’m sure he was a great guy but I never knew him.”

Friends, let me explain something to you.  Many people have knowledge of who God is and they confuse that with a relationship. They think that because they have an answer to the question, “Who do you say that Jesus is?” then they must be good.

They say, “Well I know who God is, I believe there was a Jesus.”  They know lots of facts about Jesus, they may even read the Bible and attend church.  They may even be leaders in the church.

But unless their answer to this question is relational and not just factual they’ve missed the mark.

Holly Hollis is my wife. Lane and Landon are my sons. There is no other way I would describe them.  I would never say, when asked, who is that beautiful lady is with me that she is the daughter of Donna and Jerry Elkins, or that she is a female who happens to live in my house, NO I answer by saying, “SHE IS MY WIFE.”  The relationship is in my answer.

When asked, “Who do you say that Jesus is?”, Is a relationship indicated in your answer?

When I look at this question I say that he’s my Father, He’s my friend, He’s my everything.  Not the guy they talk about in the Bible.

Jesus says in Matthew 7 that many will come to me upon walking through the doors of death saying, and I’m paraphrasing,

“Lord, Lord,

I knew everything about you…

I knew what your Word said…

I was faithful to attend church…

I was a great person…

But I just never invited you to be a part of my life.”

Scripture says that God will say in that day, “Depart from Me, for I never knew you.”

Friends, it’s not enough to know WHO Jesus is. 

What matters is whether or not your answer to this question is relational, or is it just factual?

So how do you know?

Well, it’s pretty simple. Either you’re at peace right now, with what I’m saying, or you’re in agony.  Pay attention to what’s going on inside of your spirit right now.  Are you at peace?  Or is your heart telling you what you need to do, but your mind is looking to close out this blog.  Make no mistake, that’s a spiritual battle being fought right now between your sinful flesh and a Holy God.

Please, please, don’t close this blog without first visiting our Peace with God webpage at www.RunforGod.com/PeaceWithGod.

Cultivating a personal relationship with Jesus Christ is simple, but you must be intentional and take that first step.

God Loves You.  That’s truth.

If you like what you’ve read in this blog, then please like it, comment on it, but most importantly, share it.  You never know who might need to hear the simple truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ today.

I love you all!

Now go tell someone about Jesus!

Mitchell

God Thoughts

God ThoughtsI don’t know about you, but God is always laying things on my heart.  Things that both encourage me and that could point people to His saving grace, but many times I go through my busy day and let those thoughts slip away.

It is for this reason that we are going to try something new here at Run for God.  We are going to test a series called God Thoughts.

These are simple messages that I feel God has laid on my heart and prompted me to share with everyone in my sphere of influence, and that includes you.

God Thoughts has three objectives.

Number one, for you to Watch.  Join our YouTube channel and watch these short videos and prayerfully consider what God may be telling you.  Maybe He’s offering you encouragement in a particular situation or even prompting you to take some kind of action.  Whatever it is, be obedient.

Number two, Share. The more you like, comment on, and share these videos, the more we will know that they are effective.  This is evangelism in its most simple form. Taking the word of God and sharing it with a lost and dying world, and believe me, there are plenty of people looking at your social media feed who need to hear the hope of Jesus.

Number three, Salvations. This is the primary goal of Run for God. Introducing people to the saving grace of Jesus Christ.  Each video will conclude with an invitation to visit our Peace with God webpage.  God has already used this simple yet powerful page to bring many into a personal relationship with Himself.

That’s it everyone. My hope and prayer is that these God Thoughts will both encourage believers and draw the lost to Jesus. It’s a simple formula, but if we all pitch in it will make an enormous impact for the cause of Christ.

I love you all, now go tell someone about Jesus.

Mitchell

Subscribe to God Thoughts by visiting our YouTube page here.