Impossible to thank Jesus

for the harrrd, the suffering, the “negative”, in my life, when I feel ALONE and in CHARGE.  When I’m confident-I-know-what’s-thankable, and what’s not.  Only when I believe Jesus is totally in charge of me, and totally loving me, when I’m curious and expectant to see what He does NEXT, in me, others, circumstances, can I thank Him for everyone just as we are, and everything just as it is.  I only believe like that, when the Spirit has freshly convicted me of my feeling ALONE and in CHARGE — wise in my own eyes, leaning on my own understanding.  No credit to DAVE.  All glory to Jesus.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, encouraging Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness, to Christians — especially DAVE, so Christians might have something inside that seculars actually want

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Improvement is a Curse.

Improvement involves being better, doing better, living better, having better, looking better, feeling better, thinking better, loving better, vacationing better.  Improvement is addiction, where contentment is bliss, freedom.  Jesus is ENOUGH for the contented.  He is NOT enough for the improvement addict.  Adam and Eve were content — before they became addicted to improvement, independence, confidence-they-knew-what’s-best.  Living under the Curse, circumstance-dependent for joy and peace.

Contented humans need nothing more.  Blissful.  Enjoying everything just as it is, everyone just as we are.  Contented humans are easy to love, humble.  Improvement addicts need to WIN.  We need our favorite sports team, political party, ethnic group, country, denomination, to win, be the best, so we can feel good about ourselves.  And we also love secretly analyzing, critiquing, judging, everyone and everything, so we feel good about ourselves.  Jesus is not ENOUGH for the competitive human — the improvement addict.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, King of Improvement Addicts, except when freshly convicted of the sin of INdependence/pride/worldliness, momentarily, so the seculars around him might be drawn to the Jesus-bliss in him

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Easier life = happier life?

My flesh thinks so.  And it’s persuasive.  Though thoroughly deceived.  I only believe the lie when I feel ALONE and in CHARGE of my life.  When I don’t believe Jesus is totally in charge of every detail of my life.  When I’m envious of the easier lives around me.

How many times in my 76 years has my flesh been WRONG about what would make me happier?  I got my way, but instead of happier, I was simply more addicted to getting my way.  Scripture says my life is not my own, that I’ve been bought with a price.  That I’m happiest when I am curious and expectant to see what SovereignShepherdJesus does NEXT, in me, others, circumstances.  I’m never curious/expectant unless the Spirit freshly convicts me of feeling ALONE and in CHARGE.  Ahhh.

— EasierAddictedDave, always needy for fresh conviction of the sin of INdependence, so he might momentarily have something compelling inside, to the seculars around him

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You will not be consistently happy,

content, at peace with yourself, your God, and the world around you, until Jesus grows you clueless-you-know-what’s-best.  Dependent on Him, not on your mind, other minds, talking heads on TV or online.  Leaning on your own understanding, being wise in your own eyes, is a formula for unhappiness.  Addiction.  Circumstance-dependent for happiness.

And I predict you won’t be fruitful with seculars.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, promoting Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, sovereignty-awareness to Christians — especially DAVE, so Christians might actually have something seculars want

To receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com

Impossible to really KNOW Jesus,

unless you really KNOW yourself.  Self-awareness is crucial to really knowing Jesus.  He who has a present sense of having been forgiven only a little, presently KNOWS Jesus only a little, presently KNOWS himself only a little, presently loves Jesus only a little, presently loves himself conditionally, presently loves others conditionally, and presently loves Jesus’ genius plan for everyone, conditionally.  Only big sinners who presently KNOW they are big sinners — pathetically-dysfunctional Christians, presently KNOW how big a Savior Jesus is, are presently wowed by Him, living and working out of communion with Him, the Pearl of Great Price, worth selling all to get.  So WHAT if I’m pathetic in the eyes of others and myself, having zero worthiness of my own?

Really KNOWing Jesus and His sovereign reign over every detail of life, causes all my idols to pale by comparison, diminishes their power over my life.  And causes me to be curious/expectant to see what He does NEXT, in me, others, circumstances.  With His feathery-light yoke on my shoulders, instead of my heavy yoke of idolatry/INdependence/worldliness, causing me to be wise in my own eyes, leaning on my own understanding, confident-I-KNOW-what’s-best-and-what’s-thankable-and-what’s-not, pursuing my agenda, so I’m burdened/pressured under the heavy weight, feeling ALONE and in charge — circumstance-dependent for joy and peace.

Really KNOWing Jesus is a fruit of the Spirit’s work.  A gift.  I get zero credit.  I am powerless to change myself at a root level.  I CAN confess my sin, especially the sin of being unsatisfied with Jesus and His imputed worthiness, wanting some of my own.  And I CAN keep ASKing for the Spirit afresh — fresh conviction of sin, claiming the promise in Luke 11.  And I find it helpful to leave the timetable up to the Spirit.  Fresh conviction of sin is the starting place for fresh faith — freshly KNOWing Jesus.

“Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the KNOWLEDGE of God and Jesus Christ our Lord.”  2 Pet 1:2

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, championing Gospel-awareness, self-awareness, and sovereignty-awareness, for Christians — especially DAVE, that the seculars around Christians might actually want something they have

To receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com

Wannabe freshly wowed by Jesus at Christmas?

I don’t see how any believer can be freshly wowed at Christmas, unless he’s freshly aware of what’s inside him.  So he’s freshly desperate for the Message.  This is maybe the best sermon I’ve ever heard.  Not perfect — in the ears of this perfectionist, but pert near.  http://www.sevenrivers.org/171119.html  Download audio for your phone/computer, or watch video online.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, hoping all believers everywhere — including Dave, experience a wow Christmas

To receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com

Forgive me, Jesus, for thinking

my life is UP TO ME — that You are not in charge.  I’m so heavily influenced by my flesh, and the flesh of others in this world, who are convinced human lives are up to humans.  But when I read Your Scripture afresh I get sane afresh, because Your Scripture clearly teaches that You are in charge of Dave’s life, Dave’s problems to be solved, not Dave.  Ahhh.  I love it when You grant me curiosity/expectancy to see what You do NEXT, in me, others, circumstances.

— Dave McCarty, GospelFriendships, a struggler in practicing what he preaches

To receive my Tuesday posts, email me, or subscribe to my blog: dumbsheepdave.com

Financial Update on GospelFriendships.

As of our Annual Board Meeting on Nov18, we’re currently $9200 short of covering expenses, and I’m guessing we could end up having a year-end deficit of maybe $2,000-5,000, or more, but I’m always unsure because of year-end giving.  Over the past dozen years I’ve lost some monthly supporters.  I’m a coward when it comes to individually asking believers to consider supporting this work, as I did in the early years of the ministry, so instead, I’ve sometimes taken pay cuts to balance the budget in recent years.  Janet and I are not destitute by any means, and we have never been as happy.  But I will warmly welcome any who would like to join this cause as a monthly/annual supporter, or a one-time supporter.  GospelFriendships, 110 Johns Rd, Cheltenham PA 19012-1307.  For monthly supporters we also provide electronic funds transfer so you don’t have to send a check each month.

Dave McCarty
dumbsheepdave.com