What is a "tiehacker"?

"Tiehacker" is a term originating in the Ozark hills of southern Missouri. It referred to a class of people from WAY back in the hills that made a living cutting trees into ties for the railroad. I first heard the term from my wife shortly after we married. I had been working outside all day and was dirty and stinky. She had learned it from her father, and thought it just meant "a bum". Never having heard it before, I looked it up. Although I am not really a bum, I thought it was interesting, and I do have a life-long love affair going with the Ozark hills, so ... there you have it!

Friday, January 1, 2016

New Year's Resolutions? Are you KIDDING me?

image downloaded from Google Images
New Year's Resolutions. I gave up on them years ago. I have no will power; just ask the Debster, she'll tell you.

I do, however, look at it this way. I am not perfect. There are a lot of things in my life that need changing. In fact, anyone that is even remotely honest with themselves would have to say the same thing.

As the expression goes, "Be patient with me, God isn't finished with me yet." Though it is a bit of a cliche, there is truth in that. 

Philippians 1:6; 2:13 ESV - "And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ .... [F]or it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure." 1 Thess 2:13 tells us that He works on and through us  through His Word, the Bible. We absorb His Word by reading it, by memorizing it, by hearing it preached, by meditating upon it, by discussing it with other believers. Full-immersion in His Word is the ideal for any follower of Jesus.

This, my friends, is an ongoing thing. Growth in our faith, as evidenced by growth in our walk, in our speech and actions and thought patterns. Rather than so-called "Resolutions" that we make on a late night once a year and then fail quickly, we should be growing daily, little by little.

Growth in faith and maturity, evidenced by a lifestyle that continually grows more and more Christ-like, takes time. Peter spoke of babes longing for the milk of the Word (1 Pet 2:2). The writer of Hebrews spoke of those that need milk and those that need meat (Heb 5:12-13). Paul used a similar expression (1 Cor 3:2). 

A human baby does not become a mature adult overnight; it is absurd to expect that. But on the other hand, for a person to REMAIN a baby and not grow up is a tragedy; to call an adult "childish" is an insult.

Change is necessary, and basically inevitable, for all believers. As I go through my daily life, absorbing God's Word, one thing I should constantly be on the alert for is what needs to be changed? Is there sin I need to confess, repent, and forsake? Is there a good work I need to be doing? What needs to be done to help me to be conformed, not to the world, but into the image of Christ?

image downloaded from Google Images
Don't make a "New Year's Resolution" and grit your teeth to accomplish it by your own strength and will-power, then fail miserably, then give up until the next New Year. Day by day, allow God, leading you by the Holy Spirit through His Word, to decide what needs to be changed in your life, and then to accomplish it FOR you.

Forget the world's version of "self-improvement". Embrace the work of God instead.

May God richly bless you all throughout this coming year!

Ron and the Debster

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