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Keeping Love Alive - Volume 3 - Challenge #1 - Busyness, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram
The Truth Network Radio
March 24, 2022 6:00 am

Keeping Love Alive - Volume 3 - Challenge #1 - Busyness, Part 2

Living on the Edge / Chip Ingram

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March 24, 2022 6:00 am

Are you tired? Feel weary? Do the demands of life often make you feel like you’re running on a treadmill? Like no matter how hard you work there’s always more to do? In this program, Chip continues his series "Keeping Love Alive, Volume 3" by sharing two words that’ll help you realign the priorities in your relationship. Don’t miss how to avoid the traps of busyness and begin experiencing true peace.

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Are you tired? Feel weary? Do the demands of life often make you feel like you're running on a treadmill? Like no matter how hard you work, your job or care for your family, there's always more to do. Well, today I want to give you two key words that will help you get perspective, realign your priorities and begin to experience peace.

Stay with me. Thanks for joining us for this Edition of Living on the Edge with Chip Ingram. I'm Dave Gruie, and Chip's our Bible teacher for this international discipleship ministry focused on helping Christians live like Christians. Well, in just a minute, Chip will pick up where he left off last time in his new series, Keeping the Love Alive, Volume 3, by continuing to unpack how we can better prioritize our life and avoid the traps of busyness. This is such a relatable topic, so let me encourage you after today's message to share it with someone in your life.

You can easily do that through the Chip Ingram app or by downloading and sharing the free MP3s at Well, if you have a Bible, turn now to Matthew chapter 6 for part 2 of Chip's message. One of the great mentors in my life was a guy named Howard Hendricks. He was my professor and mentor, and I'll never forget, he said, almost everyone lives with two sets of priorities.

The one that they write down on a sheet of paper that says things like God, marriage, family, et cetera, and then the one that they actually live out day by day. And usually, they don't match much at all. And if you want to have a successful life, a successful marriage, have kids that you can't make your kids turn out right, but you can create an environment that gives a really good possibility, and whether you like it or not, more is caught than taught. And here's the thing with children, they don't do what you say, believe me. They become who you are. They don't become who you say, they don't become who you would like, they don't become who you would dream, they become very much like who you are. If you are a person of integrity, by and large, they will be. If you have a hunger for God's word, demonstrated not by words, but by your behavior, in general, they will, if you pray and depend on God and are kind to people, they will probably catch, I pray and depend on God and are kind to people. And if you say, these are really important things, and I send you to Sunday school, or even a Christian school, and here's what's really important, but when they look at your behavior, because that's all they do, they will model your behavior.

My background in undergraduate and graduate work was in psychology, and there's a guy named Bandura that was famous for all of his studies. He says, the number one most powerful means of socialization, and that's just a big word that means how people turn out by all the things they experience, is modeling. Modeling.

Modeling. Perfectly, no. Imperfectly, yes. But progressively. So, tool number one, you must get a hold of your time. Right? You know, I could say something like, we all have 168 hours a week, so time is never the issue.

It's how you spend them. Psalm 90 was written by, it's the only one written, did you know who wrote Psalm 90? Anybody? It's Moses. And it's one of the last things he wrote. Let's just say in general, somewhere around 2 million plus people came out of the Exodus, and we know that only the people that were like 20 and under were going to go into the promised land. So maybe there was 3 million, I don't know. But I conservatively would say, Moses did about 1.5 million funerals.

That's bearing a lot of people over 40 years. The length of days, he says, is 70 or 80 if we have the strength, yet their span is but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass and we fly away. Who knows the power of your anger, for your wrath is as great as the fear that is due you. Application, teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart, encircling in your notes the word wisdom, a heart of wisdom. Basically what he says is 70, 80 years, life is very, very short. You don't have time to run from the pressures and the pain and log on and eat and buy stuff you don't need.

You don't have time to play games and be in denial and think that fantasy football or who wins the next NFL game. Pleasure is a wonderful interlude. It's a terrible destination. It's a great reprieve, it's a gift from God. Good food, good meals, good vacation, good movie, wonderful.

Thinking that having enough, getting enough, earning enough so that you can do whatever you want, believe me, it's a life without meaning. He says first, you want to get a hold of your time, recognize it's way shorter than you think, you're a breath away. Second, he says, there's coming judgment. Moses, who knows the power of your anger? God's holy. He's loving, he's compassionate, he's caring, but God is angry at sin.

Here's a group of people that said, yes, we know you parted the Red Sea, you did this, you've supplied the manna, but we're going to do it our way. You know, thanks for the cross, Jesus, appreciate you a bunch, but I'll tell you what, I'm going to sit on the throne of my life and I'm going to do my life, my way, in a way I think is important. That's the heart of sin, the heart of all sin is saying to God, you though made me and died for me and care for me and have a plan for me, I dethrone you and I will get to say what I will do with my life and my time and my way and it'll be my goals and my dreams, not yours. And when you do that, it's called pride and God is opposed to the proud.

The little word in Greek is anti. He puts on warrior clothes because he cares and the velvet vice. God loves all of his children, but he loves us so much. Every son, every daughter whom he loves, he disciplines. And when your priorities are out of whack and you're going down paths that are not wise.

In the Bible, wisdom is doing life according to God's plan. In other words, God says I've created relationships to work like this. I've created finances to work like this.

What you do is you remember that it belongs to me, you don't spend more than you have, you invest over here, you're generous over here and as you do that, what you'll find is you accumulate, you don't have financial pressure and as you are generous and caring and loving to other people, I will pour more into you and you'll have peace in your life. This is how you work. This is how you discipline your kids.

This is how you raise your kids. Wisdom is nothing more or nothing less than the skill, the knowledge, the understanding to apply what God says about how life's supposed to work. And he, by the way, created life, he's all knowing and he gave us the truth about how to do it. So he says, here's the application, ask God for wisdom to know what to do. In the New Testament, the apostle Paul would write, Ephesians chapter 5, Therefore be careful how you walk or literally how you live, not as unwise but wise.

Are we getting sort of a pattern here? Making the most of your time because the days are evil. Put a box around the word time. So then do not be foolish but understand what the will of the Lord is. There's two major words in Greek for time.

One is kairos, the other is kronos. Basically, the way this is making the most of your time, it's like opportunity. In other words, you have a window of opportunity.

Some of your kids are very small right now. I just talked to a young man who's very, very smart from another country. He asked me if I would mentor him so I said I would so I was on the phone with him yesterday as I was driving. He's very, very smart and he's been very successful, came out of a Southeast Asian country, just got a very advanced degree and he had some ministry opportunities and he chose one. And then he just in passing said, oh yeah, they gave me a job so that my wife could make the decision whether she wanted to be home with our child or not.

Okay. The baby's six weeks old. So I said, well, how's it going?

He said, oh, it's going really good. This is our first day we put our brand new baby in daycare and she works in this office and I work in this office and we have two salaries and I'm thinking. Now there's some people that have to put their baby in daycare. I don't know him well enough yet but I would say, why do you have a baby? My background is educational psychology. 80% of that child, 80% of that child's moral development, personality development, IQ development happens in the first five to six years. You can outsource that to someone who makes minimum wage that has seven other kids they're trying to take care of. The bonding that happens, the attachment that happens with the mom, that happens with the family.

Do you think there's a reason that the family's falling apart? But we traded, I mean, if nothing more than saying, you know what, I think for 80% of my kids' development, it's probably a good thing that, you know, like someone that loves the kid, that sings, that talks, that teaches, that loves. We traded it in for two salaries. Do you have to have two cars? Do you have to have that TV? Can you live on less?

Absolutely. You talk about misplaced priorities, okay, that's been a 30-year run. Tell me how families are doing now.

This guy just graduated from one of the most prestigious seminaries in America and I'm thinking, how could you be so smart and so unwise? His plan is to go back into a very challenging world and he will have a young child that grows up with attachment issues, lack of bonding issues, not as emotionally strong, because guess what, there's this thing that God made for babies and moms and babies and dads. Now, there are certain situations, my wife was in that case, she had two brand new babies, a husband that ran off with someone else and found herself with no job, no money, two babies, goes to work, and praise God, there was someone that would help take care of those babies. That's, you know what, everyone has some of those times, but our priorities are, you have to get hold of your time and you have to live wisely. Those moments aren't coming back. Birthdays don't come back.

Graduations don't come back. Windows of time where you sit out after playing one-on-one with your son and are dripping wet and are looking up at the sky and instead of doing a Bible study, you just start talking to God out loud and he realizes it's not about church, it's not about religion, and he loves his dad and you're out there sweating and that's how you be a man. That's how you walk with God. And there's moments when, you know, yes there's TV and junk and Netflix, but you tuck your kids in and you bathe them and you get up and you pray with them before they go to school and you tell them what really matters and they really matter.

And love and family is spelled T-I-M-E. There is no substitute and you all have been raised in a generation of media and social media. I mean, if you want to get a hold of your time, get a hold of your time, turn off your social media for the next seven days. Believe me, all the people that are posting things, it'll be there when you get back. Just stopping, detoxing. You have plenty of time to meet with God. Ask yourself, what are the habits?

This was a breakthrough for me. Just ask yourself, there's little habits like you go to work, you do this, you come home, you eat, and then if you're not careful, you can find you burn three hours every night sitting in front of a tube. And then if you watch 30 to 45 minutes of the news, I mean, how many pictures do we need to see that things are really challenging? Don't put your head in the sand, but I will tell you, every time you put all that stuff in your mind, your emotions will tell you, you need to help fix this or you need to do something about it. And it will get you discouraged and thinking very negatively and in ways that are not healthy or good for you at all. The Bible says, set your mind on the things that are above, not on the things that are on earth. The mindset on the flesh is death, the mindset on the spirit is life and peace. The most important decision you make every single day is what do you allow to go into your mind?

Because your thinking produces your emotions, your emotions by and large produces your behavior, your behavior is a series of decisions and then you live with those consequences. So your thinking and our time, give God your first and best time. And then I gave you a little, it's called too pro-apt, if you've never kind of knew how to study the Bible, it's take a short little section. It could be James chapter 1 or you could go through the book of Mark or the Gospel of John, pray before, then read the chapter super fast, that's what I mean by preview.

Then read it slowly, thoughtfully, then read it one more time and just observe, are there words that are repeated or what's it talking about? And then just say, God, what do you want me to do? And make some sort of application and then ask God, pray for the help to do it. And then tell someone, this is what I read today, a good someone might be your mate, might just text him, you know, this is what I read this morning and this is what I'm going to do. I'm going to pray for your mom because she called last night, I'm concerned about her. If this is new to you, we do a thing at Living on the Edge called daily discipleship where I actually meet with people individually and mentor or disciple them in how to read the Bible, how to pray, how to meet with God.

And I never, I usually talk 8 or 9 minutes max, never more than 10 and then I give people just one something that I ask you for 10 minutes and I meet with you to build a habit for just about 3 weeks. I had never opened the Bible growing up. I trusted Christ through athletics, fellowship with Christian athletes right after I graduated from high school. And I went to college on a basketball scholarship and there was a bricklayer in that town who met with me every Tuesday when I was willing to get up. Often I pretended I was asleep and he taught me how to study God's word, he taught me how to pray, he had me at his house for dinner with a bunch of other athletes. I watched a grown man date his wife, I'd never seen a married person date his wife.

He had 4 kids, I watched, this is what a dad looks like who loves his sons and disciplines and plays with them. And about 3 years in, I didn't know much about Christianity because it was all new. But I decided in my heart of hearts someday, I want to be like Dave Marshall. I don't want to be a lawyer, I don't want to be an astronaut, I don't want to win, I was a basketball coach and teacher. And I just thought more than anything else, I want to be a Christian like Dave Marshall, I want to be a dad like Dave Marshall, I want to be a husband like Dave Marshall. And that sent me on a journey of getting a hold of my time, getting a hold of my money, getting a hold of my priorities and it's been a long journey and making the changes has not been easy. But life giving, God has so much more for us than most of us are getting. I don't want to get to heaven and this is mostly in story, you know, shelf 1, shelf 2, shelf 3, what are these? These are all the blessings. These are relational blessings, these were the family blessings, these were the financial blessings, these were all the big opportunities.

Well how come I didn't get them? You decided to do it your own way. I mean I made it pretty clear, I laid it out, principles were clear, you know when you walk in wisdom, I had all these, I'm for you, God's not down on you, I loved you, no good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly. The dreams I had for you, the opportunities I had for you, what I wanted to do, the intimacy in your marriage, the kind of parent I wanted you to be, but you just got busy, busy, busy.

You know, phone, phone, phone, phone, social media, social media, what's everyone think? Pressure, pressure, pressure. I just wanted you to be a man of God. I just wanted you to be a woman of God.

I died for you, don't you think I'm going to give you the best? I mean he that spared not his own son, how would he not with him freely give us all things? And so, the second one is your money. Huge subject, but I'm just going to say that Jesus spoke more about money than he did heaven and earth combined. Not because he's trying or needs your money, obviously, it's because your heart always follows your treasure. But the thing, here's what money tells you, it's your values. When you have money arguments, it's not about money, it's about who spends what.

Why did you buy those shoes, or why did you play so much golf, or why did you do this, or why did you do that, or why did you spend that, or why didn't we talk about it? Money is about what matters, and it reflects where your heart really is. And so God wants to have our heart. And so why he tells us to give the first portion, he owns 100% of it. I don't have a house, it's his house. I don't have time, it's his time. I don't have a car, it's his car. I don't have savings, it's his savings, so I manage it. What do you want me to do with all this?

He says, well, first, just so that we stay on the same page, every time something comes in, I want you to give me the first portion, that's what it means to honor, to remind you that it's mine, not yours. Because you'll spend it differently, you'll invest it differently, you'll do different with it when you understand it's mine. And by the way, I'm like the smartest financial manager in the whole world because I know the beginning from the end.

And I'm for you, and by the way, when people's priorities are out of whack, I do this thing, I put holes in their purses. You want to run your finances? You want to do it your own way?

Go right ahead. But I've watched over and over and over and over, he can make, you know, let's say you start with 10% as a good starting place, he can make 90% go six times as far as 100% when your priority's in line. And then you get to see vivid answers to prayer and when you get a hold of your money, you have to do silly things like have an actual budget and decide where it goes, find out where it is. So the application is four commitments, give the first portion of each paycheck to God. And by the way, there's tons of resources and we have some and there's others, Financial Peace University, Ron Blue Group, Crown Ministry, here's the deal. You want to get your finances in order, there's plenty of ways to do it.

I just want to tell you, you better do it. Second is pay your bills next before you go to Costco or other places. Live on the rest. The way we did that is we did those first two things and then we decided, you know, how much we had for groceries and we put them in envelopes, cash.

It's really weird. It's funny, when you use a card, it just doesn't seem like real money when you do cash. And then when the envelope's empty, you're done. So, you know, hey, we got $85 for the next two weeks for recreation. We went out to dinner with $70, great.

Enjoy the next 13 days on that $15, you know. So, you get the idea. And the fourth is to get out of debt. Obviously, there's, you know, things like homes that are appreciable and some debt that can be wise and helpful in some seasons. But that's really what the Bible says.

God will bless your finances as you do it because really what he wants to do is bless you. This is the longest recorded day in Jesus' life. And it's in Mark, chapter 1. And it says, a great while before dawn, he arose and went to a lonely place to pray. It was a crazy day. He ministered, ministered, ministered, and then he got to Peter's mother-in-law's house and she was sick, and so he healed her.

And it says people came from everywhere. And he cast out demons and he healed people into the wee hours. Sometimes we think Jesus had, he called himself the Son of Man because he was fully man and he was fully God, without confusion. He lived not as deity. He lived as being fully human. He said, I can do nothing apart from what I see the Father.

I can do nothing of my own. And so it was his humanity trusting the Father in the power of the Holy Spirit so he would model for us how we live the life. And after his longest day, he felt the need to get up early and reconnect with his Father to remember what matters. Because he was tempted in every way like us, yet without sin. And you know, you just can't have people saying, you are awesome, you're the new rock star. Thousands of people are showing up, his popularity. And his disciples go out that morning and say, Jesus, Jesus, you've got to come back.

It's unbelievable if you thought last night was great. I mean, you are like the greatest rock star and I mean, everyone's looking for you. And I believe he went out there to remember why he came. Because he says to the disciples, I must go to other villages for that's why I came. It's a little Greek word that means a day of necessity.

I have to do this. And so I've kind of taken that as my challenge that if Jesus, the Son of God, needed to meet with his Father to get clear on what matters and realign his priorities, I probably need it every day. Chip will be right back with his application for this message, challenge number one, busyness, from his series, Keeping Love Alive, volume three. It's been said that marriage is like a journey. And while every relationship has its ups and downs, there seem to be particular struggles that affect every couple. In this series, Keeping Love Alive, volume three, Chip addresses the four challenges every great marriage has in common. He exposes how busyness, temptation, kids, and stagnation can ruin relationships.

Discover from God's word how you and your mate can handle these trials together and become a stronger couple, more effective parents, and create a happier home. Now, if you missed any part of this series, Keeping Love Alive, volume three, or want to learn more about our helpful resources, the Chip Ingram app is a great way to get plugged in. Now, before we go any further, Chip, I can see you want to jump in here. Thanks, Dave. I want to talk to those of you who partner with us financially. Your gifts help us not just stay on the air, but they provide the necessary funding to create curriculum and develop our website and provide resources at extraordinarily reasonable prices. I mean, your giving is making an amazing impact, so thank you very, very much. And for those of you that are enjoying the benefits of Living on the Edge, but you haven't yet become a financial partner, would you consider doing that today? Your gifts are going to get invested right back into the ministry to assist us to develop resources, stay on the air, and help Christians live like Christians. I mean, is there ever a day when we need to make a difference?

Well, it's now. Will you help us? Thanks, Chip. If partnering with Living on the Edge is an idea that makes sense to you, we'd love to have you join us. Helping Christians live like Christians will change the world we live in. To give a gift, call us at 888-333-6003. That's 888-333-6003. Or if you prefer to give online, go to

That's App listeners, tap donate. Now, Chip, let's get to that application we promised. As we wrap up today's program, I just long to put my arm around you literally and say, Hey, I understand. I understand what it's like when you're pulled in all these directions and a lot of you are working at home and you find yourself busy. And what I want to say is you got to get a hold of your life. And the only way to get a hold of your life and your priorities is to seek first God's kingdom. The only way to seek first God's kingdom, you have to get a handle on two things, your time and your money, your time and your money. The number one thing you must do with your time is meet with God.

He wants to lead you, guide you, comfort you, direct you, protect you. But if you're not meeting with God, you're just starting each and every day, I mean with your hair on fire, trying to meet all kind of needs. In the notes, I give you a very specific way of how to meet with God and do it first in just 20 minutes and I call it the 2Pro app and encourage you to download the notes.

They're free. A second way that has really been helpful is something we call daily discipleship. And literally it's I will teach you how to meet with God one-on-one. I never talk more than 10 minutes and then I ask you for 10 minutes.

I have just heard literally from thousands of people as they've done that with me for 10 days or 20 days, I now get it. My life's changed. I meet with God.

I hear his voice. And then the second thing is you have to get your finances in order. I gave you a little overview of giving first, pay your bills next, live on the rest and get out of debt. But for many of you, you're going to have to get with a financial counselor or go through something like Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University. But you have to get your finances in order. And these are tall, tall challenges. But this is where to start. And so Father, I pray for my brothers and sisters that I know are struggling in these areas. I'm talking with them on a daily basis.

Will you give them the grace to take the first step toward you, to meet with you, to get your direction and to trust you for all the rest. In Jesus' name, Amen. Thanks Chip. Well, you know, a great way to get plugged in with the resources Chip just mentioned is through the Chip Ingram app. There you can listen to past series, sign up for daily discipleship, download the message notes and much more. Let us help you experience God in a new personal way, starting today with the Chip Ingram app. Well, join us again next time as Chip continues his series, Keeping Love Alive, Volume 3. Until then, this is Dave Druey saying thanks for listening to this Edition of Living on the Edge.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-18 12:57:37 / 2023-05-18 13:09:30 / 12

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