Monthly Archives: March 2017

Monday Motivator – March 27

Your dad is many things. He is a co-creator with your mom and God that enabled you to be born. He contributed to your exciting, mysterious, and full-of-possibilities new life. He gave you his last name as an anchor of belonging without you having to prove anything to anyone. You matter to him just for who you. Your arrival stamped his heart with a seal of love.

Your dad labored daily to provide a safe environment for you to grow up in. He does not command respect, but has earned it due to his self-less expression or love and care towards you. From the time you were brought home from the hospital, he has prayed, hugged, and held onto you, fed and clothed you, and kept you warm and clean.

Regardless if your dad was tall or short, he is a giant to his little one. He towers over his toddler, yet is not distant, remote, or far away. He loves to get down on the floor with you, stooping down on all fours even, to engage you at your eye level for fun and horseplay. He enjoys picking you up and moving you through the air like a mini-airplane. My guess is you never worried about being dropped because your dad had you in his grasp. Your ensuing laughter confirmed you were safe and enjoying the experience.

A dad’s shoulders are strong and broad, because he bears the weight and responsibility to be a wife lover, care giver, and shelter provider. But many dads are also known to use those shoulders to hoist their kids up for piggy back rides, and to get a better view of birds, balloons, trees with hanging fruit, animals at the zoo, or passing parades.

A dad’s hands are large, firm, tender, offering care and love in one instant, and appropriate discipline in another. How often they tease and tickle and draw the laughter out of his child, too. Do you remember the first steps you took and whose hands were there to catch you, offer support, and give you one of your first “attaboy” or “attagirl” affirmations?

A dad’s voice is one of authority and discipline, tenderness and concern. He is one to warn you to stop when approaching danger (like a snake you don’t see in the backyard grass), and comfort and steadiness in times of fear, darkness, uncertainty, and especially in the midst of storms.

Remember your dad’s hands holding you as a youngster? Remember his hands on the steering wheel of the family car on vacation trips? Remember his hands helping to steady you as you learned to ride a bike (even with training wheels the first time)? Remember his hands on your shoulder as he and mom congratulated you for a report card, a chore done well, and finishing high school? Remember how he encouraged your heart when you did not believe in yourself?

What are some things you like and admire about your dad? Have you told him lately? If not, how soon can you connect with your dad and do so?

What are some things about your dad that contribute to making your relationship with him a bit rocky today? What can you do to make things better? Have you prayed about it?

Read Matthew 5:48…Jesus says our heavenly Father is perfect. Don’t make the mistake of comparing your dad to God as a father. It takes someone special to be a dad. Live communally. Love your dad however he did so far as a dad to you. Love God too, the best Daddy of all of us.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

©2017 by Mike Olejarz

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Monday Motivator – March 20

By rising from the dead, Jesus created a new form of life. This new life is not a heart-stopping, fingernails in the dashboard, grim ability to endure life. It is also not a pie-in-the-sky, emotion-laden, high-pitched escape from reality in which people float over life’s problems.

This new life is based on the assurance that the risen Christ owns the future, has a firm hold on me, and promised to be with me in everything. The new creation is a new dimension, not a mere feeling, fancy, or self-help mood. One benefit of living now in Christ’s Kingdom and under his rule is that we may groan under life’s burdens even as we learn to live free from them.

We discover that to follow Jesus means a confidence in the truth of His story. His story supercedes all others. As the story always seems to demand more of us than we can find in us, the Spirit of God empowers and enables us to stay in step with the Spirit. The Spirit creates in us a desire to live for an under Christ as Lord. The desire is the key, because as we hunger and thirst for His ways, we find ourselves empowered to live under his Lordship.

Read 2nd Timothy in one sitting.

Search for and write down the verse for each of the following admonitions in Paul’s second letter to Timothy. Then pray that they feed your desire to follow and live like Jesus.

  1. Fan into flames the gift of God that is within you.
  2. Do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or me (Paul).
  3. Join with me in suffering for the gospel.
  4. What you heard from me, keep as the pattern of sound teaching.
  5. Guard the good deposit that was entrusted to you (guard the trust!)
  6. Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.
  7. Entrust what you have heard to reliable men (and women) qualified to teach others.
  8. Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.
  9. Reflect on what I am saying.
  10. Remember Jesus Christ is the reason we endure suffering.
  11. Keep reminding each other of these things.
  12. Warn others about the danger of quarreling over words.
  13. Strive to be acceptable before God as one of his workers.
  14. Avoid godless chatter – it only makes you more ungodly.
  15. Flee the evil desires of youth.
  16. Pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace…(out of pure heart).
  17. Don’t get involved in foolish arguments (rather, pray God will work in others).
  18. Do not conform to the attitudes and actions of godless people.
  19. Continue in what you have learned and become convinced of.
  20. Preach the Word when it is convenient; preach the Word when it is not.
  21. Keep your head at all times – (be a persistent and consistent Christian).
  22. Do the work of an evangelist.

Think theologically. Jesus calls, bothers, and demands that we rise up to His challenge of a higher and deeper life. Count the cost as you thank the Lord for giving you the desire and strength to live this new life. Depend on His Spirit every day to choose to live His way.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

©2017 by Mike Olejarz

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Monday Motivator – March 13

I have learned that to live life well, we need to be thoughtful and intentional and understand why as well as how to do it. Jesus lived a short life by today’s standards of life expectancy, yet had an appreciation for how to live in right relationship with his Father and other human beings.

I decided to follow Jesus and His teachings long ago because I concluded He is the only way to forgiveness, salvation, and human flourishing. I placed my faith, hope, and trust in Jesus as my Savior and Lord because of His death, burial, and resurrection from the dead. I affirm He is the only One who qualifies for my allegiance. His words are designed to give me ultimate wholeness. The work of the Holy Spirit enables and empowers me to live up the teachings of His Kingdom. In short, Jesus transformed me to live with purpose, clarity, and power. Last, Jesus loved and lived life in accordance with the divinely revealed Scriptures that we know today as the Bible. He knew the writings of the prophets and affirmed their accuracy, historicity, and relevance.

Jesus knew our proclivity to run our own race without His assistance, and warned of the consequences of such action. The Scriptures are replete with the admonition to “guard your heart” as a regular discipline of life. Here are several steps we can take to practice that idea.

Imagine the dashboard of your car. There are several gauges you need to pay attention to ensure your car is in good working condition. Likewise, imagine four gauges of your life that you should review on a regular basis.

The first is the spiritual gauge. How is your soul doing? What holy habits do you practice to walk with the Lord? Like the Psalmist wrote in Psalm 119: 9, and 11, “Have you hidden God’s Word in your heart, so you will not sin against Him?”

Second is the physical gauge. Jesus says our physical bodies are meant to be a “temple for the Lord.” How are you stewarding your body for the glory of God? How clean, pure, and healthy are you? How are your sleep, nutrition, and exercise patterns? How are you taking care of your teeth, eyes, skin, and general health?

The third gauge is the emotional one. How do you handle the daily stress and demands of life? How do you handle people and circumstances? How content are you amidst the ups and downs of getting older, staying in touch with and caring for your parents, as well as your siblings? How do you practice the ministry of presence in the community of people you value?

The fourth gauge to keep an eye on is the check engine light. When this light blinks, it’s time to stop and pull over for an assessment. It may happen when you are susceptible toward acting on temptation. Or you may not be fulfilling the mandate of your call to love God and carry out your responsibilities in your family, at school, at work, or in Chi Alpha. Are losing your spiritual fervor to walk according to the Word of God and live a holy life? You may be considering a moral short cut that could endanger your soul and cause younger believers to be affected by your choices. Have you allowed one of the seven deadly sins to get rooted in your mind and/or actions?

Read Luke 2:52. Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, in favor with God and man. Jesus lived a life worth emulating, under the power and influence of the Holy Spirit. Grow devotionally. Periodically checking your life gauges will help you stay tuned up and in step with Jesus.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

©2017 by Mike Olejarz

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Monday Motivator – March 6

Chi Alpha Campus Ministries is about reconciling college students to Jesus Christ, thereby contributing to transforming the university, the marketplace, and the world. Our name comes from the apostle Paul’s words to the Corinthians in his second letter to them, chapter 5, verse 20. In it he presents the idea that followers of Jesus in the first century are referred to as “Christ’s ambassador’s or His sent ones,” as though God were making His appeal through them. That idea has continued down through the centuries since the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus and is still relevant, understood, and practiced by Christians today.

Read 2 Corinthians 5:20.

One of our newer initiatives is called “driving diversity” and it reflects our desire to reach, influence, and serve every student we can.

Our purpose is to help Chi Alpha Nation be an accurate representation of Christ’s people to the college and university campus in its: sacred creation (Acts 17:28), diverse ethnic makeup (Revelation 7:9), supernatural oneness (Galatians 3:28), Jesus-centered unity (John 17:21), kingdom-ethic witness (Matthew 5:1-5, Luke 4:18-19), and reconciliation ministry (2 Corinthian 5:16-21, Ephesians 2:14-22).

We do this by:

  1. Helping to mobilize the unsent through strategic funding initiatives, resourcing, and mentoring. Unsent refers to ethnic minorities traditionally under-represented in missions.
  1. Equipping Chi Alpha staff through training and resourcing to make disciples of ethnic minority students from conversion to leadership.
  1. Equipping Chi Alpha staff to bring the message of reconciliation and healing to deal with racial issues from a Biblical kingdom perspective.
  1. Being a catalyst for seeing Chi Alpha chapters planted on the 106 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU’s) through strategic partnerships with individuals inside and outside of Chi Alpha. Our mission of living out 2 Corinthians 5:20 cannot happen without reaching our Historically Black Colleges and Universities.
  1. Serving as a bridge between Chi Alpha Campus Ministries and the Ethnic Fellowships of the Assemblies of God.

Chi Alpha Diversity is a ministry of Chi Alpha Campus Ministries led by Belkis Lehmann, National Diversity Specialist. The adventure starts with a local investment by Belkis and her husband Steve, on HBCU’s in the Triad Region of North Carolina. They pray and plan to expand the effort nationally through recruitment, training, mentoring, and pioneering.

Serve globally. What can you do as a first step on your campus? We in Chi Alpha believe it takes people from all nations to reach all of the nations for Jesus. Join us by praying, giving, and going to hasten the day of Revelation 7:9. Learn more and get connected at drivingdiversity.org.

Love is a verb,

Mike Olejarz

©2017 by Mike Olejarz

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