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Wednesday, May 3

We Have to Learn About LETTING STUFF GO!

"The Rabbi asked, 'Do you know why PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN was, without a doubt, one of the greatest world leaders that has ever lived?' His answer would change my life!" - Keith

In the winter of 1988, we were preparing for a concert that Keith Shealy & Toward The Mark band was scheduled to do with Mylon and Broken Heart. In preparation for the upcoming event, I was being interviewed by the host of a local radio station in the Washington, DC area.

            About ten minutes into the interview, the host announced to the listening audience that we were breaking for a few commercials. No sooner had we broken away that the door to the studio opened, and in walked a local Messianic Jewish Rabbi. Under his left arm was his brief case. In his right hand he was tossing a tennis ball up and down!

            Without saying a word, and rather abruptly, the Rabbi threw the tennis ball at the show's host. Seizing the moment as an opportunity to display his sharp athletic ability, the host immediately reached out and grabbed the airborne tennis ball. As the host began to gloat over his quick response to the pitch, the Rabbi looked him square in his eyes and asked, "Why did you catch that ball?"

            Looking somewhat puzzled, the host replied, "I don't know. I guess I've always been programmed to catch things when they are thrown to me."

            At that, the Rabbi then asked him, "Do you know why PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN was, without a doubt, one of the greatest world leaders who ever lived?" His answer would change my life!

            Rabbi said, "The reason that Ronald Reagan was one of the greatest leaders in all of history is, he learned how NOT to catch everything that was thrown at him!"

            Until we finally come to the place where we know, without a shadow of a doubt, that there is nobody and nothing worth our relationship with God, we will constantly find ourselves overwhelmed and sinking under the weightiness of the cares of this life.

            Jesus lovingly warns us that, "Heaven and earth shall pass away: but My Words shall not pass away. And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting (excess), and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares (being unprepared). For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth. (Luke 21:33-35)"

            We have to get better at letting go of things that we should not carry with us as the result of effects from the way others my see us or criticize us. If we "drop our guard", and permit those things to take root in our lives - like an insult, false accusations, criticisms, and such - we open ourselves up to what can weigh us down and keep us from moving forward into all that God has for us. If we "reject" those things when they are thrown our way, we keep our focus to be freed from the self-limiting effects of: "unforgiveness, poor self image, bitterness, unreal expectations of others, anger, jealousy, greed,..." and the like. The Apostle Paul puts it this way in Philippians 3:13-14, "Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."

            To those who have given up houses, lands, relationships, jobs, and their very lives to diligently pursue oneness with God, and resist all manner of distractions to fulfill God's plan for you, we dedicate this message to you. If you are one who has not yet invited Jesus Christ into your heart to be your Lord and Savior, right there where you are, pray to God the following prayer.

            "Father God, in the precious  Name of Jesus Christ, the King of kings and the Lord of all lords, I lay my life at Your  Feet. I come before You, confessing that I am a sinner, and I ask for You to forgive me of all my sins - those that I know I have committed, as well as those that I am not even aware of.  I ask that You come into my heart and be my Lord. I lay my life, and everything in it, at Your Feet, and ask that You please take me and begin to change me to be like YOU. I ask that You redeem the time that has passed, and allow me the opportunity to become exactly what You have predestined me to be, from before the foundation of the earth. I commit my life to You now, and thank You for receiving me as Your own. In the wonderful name of Jesus Christ, the son of the Living God, I pray, Amen."  And AMEN!!!

            WELCOME HOME! If you have just prayed this prayer we want to congratulate you for making the greatest decision that you can ever make! By accepting Jesus Christ, or rededicating your life to Him, as your personal Lord and Saviour, you have begun the wonderful process of being grafted into the family of God, and we welcome you home. We would like to invite you to contact us so that we can send you information that will help you begin growing in your relationship with God. We would also encourage you to begin attending a Holy-Spirit-filled, Bible-believing church right away.

            We advise you to begin reading The Holy Bible daily, whether you understand it or not. Always remember, God's written Word in The Holy Bible is like no other book that has ever been written! When we rendezvous with The Person of The Holy Spirit as we read what God has written there, it becomes stored in our heart for The Holy Spirit to access it to bring to our remembrance.  You will find that the Scriptures will become applicable to whatever you are going through, at any given time!

            There are wonderful Bible teachers on television and on the radio that can, especially early in your walk with God, help you to begin receiving good teaching, and encouragement, right away. Although very informative, these programs are never to be a substitute for close relationships with people who love and serve God. At times, the transformation process that you have now begun will be difficult, and you will be tempted to go back to your old ways of living your old life. It will be during times like these that hanging out with strong Christian friends and mentors will be crucially important. There really IS strength in numbers!

            CONGRATULATIONS!!! We would like to welcome you into the Family of God... right where "you belong", and you always will! (Selah)

            KEEP PRESSIN' IN... and learnin', and growin', w-i-t-h our Lord and Savior, and also with Keith and Brenda Shealy & Toward The Mark family.

XII SMOOTH STONES book, holding the collection of these 12 most-requested Titles:

No Matter What!
The Magnetic Mantle or Why Cats... Have Kitties;
Fire, Pressure, and Them Slithery... Snakes
The Ultimate Home Gym
Vampires In The Church
The Great Deception
The Invisible Man
God Is So Much Bigger Than You Think!
Die Empty!
Building Godly Friendships
The Secret To A Happy Life

Twelve of Keith's best lessons-learned that are most-requested by friends and fellow-readers are printed in our book, "XII Smooth Stones" available at TowardTheMark online

We pray God uses this message to fan the flame in your heart for Christ Jesus, His wonder-full Ways, and His Plan and Purpose for you in this life. If you have any questions about our work, or if you would like to make a special tax-deductible donation, place a special order for any of our books, magazines, or CDs, or to share a testimony or prayer request with us, please  e-mail us. Also feel free to write a letter and mail it to TOWARD THE MARK, P.O. Box 1152, Yorktown, VA 23692-1152.
May God bless you greatly as you carry this truth in your heart. We are eternally grateful for our loving Toward The Mark Family of sponsors who make this blog, and all of our resources, possible by their faithful prayer and monthly financial support!

Your friends and servants in Christ,

To Show GOD BIG in a World that Sees Him small… 
sums up the reason Keith stepped out in faith to focus on reaching the lost and strengthening believers everywhere, through Toward The Mark, Inc.  Keith and Brenda's prayer is that you will be encouraged and edified by the Secrets from God's Word that Keith recounts in our written and recorded products.

We couldn't do this without the help of our friends!
This blog message, along with the complete collection of original podcasts, music, blogs, books, CDs, and other Bible-based resources of Toward The Mark, Inc. is made possible by the faithful prayer and financial support of the TTM Sponsorship Family. We'd like to invite you to come on-board, to become a part of the TTM Family as well by becoming a monthly financial partner? Your support will go toward fulfilling our God-given calling to help provide effective, contemporary outreach tools that are available to everyone, the churched and un-churched alike, who desire to know more of the love, truth, and salvation of Jesus Christ. We invite you to partner with us as we "press Toward The Mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:14)


We INVITE You ... to follow and share these resources that are also available, for helping build your faith in God, His Will, and His Ways: 

  "Between The Lines PODCAST" on TTM's Libsyn Channel
HEAR (podcast): PRESSIN' In With God... Trade Anxiety & Fatigue for Confidence & Strength!
+ Keith's song *WON by ONE*

CLICK HERE to make a tax-deductible contribution securely by PayPal.
Every gift is tax-deductible and helps, and we thank you for it!

Mail tax-deductible contributions by check or money order made out to:
Toward The Mark, Inc., P.O. Box 1152, Yorktown, VA 23692-1152. 

Thank you in advance for sowing your financial seed into the fertile soil of this ministry! We pray God bless you with a 100-fold return for your generosity!

           Take me... back to the top of this post.

           Take me to Don't Take Your Gifts to the Grave

           Take me to Salvation is For Every-Day Life

           Take me to Emergency Warning to Professing Witches

           Take me to Passionate Pursuit of Singleness

           Take me to We'll Miss You, Dad Shealy

           Take me to 75 Years Ago: Pearl Harbor & Fleet Admiral Nimitz

           Take me to Our Military Vets Out of Sight...Out of Mind

           Take me to Where to RUN When Trials Come

           Take me to Caught Up With Jesus

           Take me to True Leaders Speak Life

           Take me to Greatest Hindrance to Significance

           Take me to Keith's MINI-Series Journey #1 of *Keep the FAITH*

           Take me to Keith's MINI-Series Journey #2 of *Keep the FAITH*

           Take me to Rattlesnake Revelation

           Take me to Gold Star Families Gave ALL

           Take me to Love of GOD

           Take me to My Broken Vessel's Fiery Trials

           Take me to Magnetic Mantle...Why Cats Should Have Kitties

           Take me to Run TOWARD the Roar

           Take me to Overcoming Intimidation

           Take me to The Heart of Thanksgiving

           Take me to The Invisible Man

           Take me to The Abomination of Misrepresentation

           Take me to Living Among Thorns

           Show me Flipcard titles

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