Pride leads to a fall.  There is a way to combat pride.  What is it?  Choose humility.  Choose the antidote of pride: the choice to be humble.

Are you a humble person?  If you’re not sure, give yourself this humility test:

  1. How much time do you spend in thanksgiving?  When you do, it shows you know your life’s success is dependent on others.
  2. How often do you serve others?  Your times is a valuable asset.  Do you use it to help others or is it all about yourself?
  3. How much money to you give to help others in need?  Generosity recognizes the world’s resources need to be shared.
  4. Do you want to serve or be served?  Which one makes your heart glad?

A self-made person worships his creator.  A humble recognizes everything in life is a gift.

Which one describes you?

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick

There is a maxim in the wisdom literature in the Bible that says, “Pride comes before the fall.”  It’s a dire warning to avoid the pit of pride at all costs.

Pride is the belief the world revolves around you.  You believe that your accomplishments are only because of you.  You have an inordinately too important view of yourself.

How might you know if pride is a part of your life?  Give yourself this pride test.  See if pride has consumed your life too much.

  1. How often do you give thanks?  To God?  To others?  Thanksgiving shows you know your success has depended on others.
  2. Are you easily offended?  If someone comes close to criticizing you, do you immediately become defensive?  If so, it’s a sign of pride.
  3. Do you want your friend’s kids to fail and not succeed?  If so, it’s a sign you’re too proud about your own kids’ success and threatened when someone else does.
  4. Do you celebrate when a colleague gets a promotion and raise?  That shows you are more concerned for others than yourself.

Pride eventually leads to a fall.  It’s imperative we immediately eliminate it.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick

Today I want to talk about the value and importance of what I call “procrastinational decision-making.”  What is that?  When confronted with a problem, it’s the ability to wait as long as possible before making a decision.  That way, you can gather as much information as possible before finally having to pull the trigger and move ahead. Yes, sometimes an immediate decision is necessary.  Sometimes you just can’t wait.  But I’ve discovered through the years that most decisions do have the ability to be put off for awhile.  They aren’t as imperative as you may think.

Therefore, wait as long as you can.  Smoke often clears over time, the fog eventually lifts, and you’ll be able to see more clearly…and decide more ably!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Andy Rooney could transmit great truths with a few words.  Here are some of his wise sayings: -I’ve learned….that the best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person.

-I’ve learned….that just one person saying to me, ‘You’ve made my day!’ makes my day!

-I’ve learned….that having your child, or grandchild, fall asleep in your arms is one of the most peaceful feelings in the world.

-I’ve learned….that being kind is more important then being right.

-I’ve learned….that I can always pray for someone when I don’t have the strength to help him in any other way.

-I’ve learned….that sometimes all a person needs is a hand to hold and a heart to understand.

Thanks, Andy Rooney, for some wise words today!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Dear friends, In over thirty years of ministry, I’ve discovered that most often God's best, richest blessings come when I’m least expecting them.  For example, when I met Marilynn, I was convinced that I would never get married.  Then she came along in a magnificent, sanctified serendipity.  Thirty-six years later, I’m very grateful.

The same has happened recently in our life and ministry together.  I’ve never sought any kind of television opportunity.  Yet recently, two different opportunities have come my way.

First, GEB, a network that will reach into 33 million American homes, has asked Forest Hill to place my messages on air on a weekly basis.  The cost is minimal.  They simply felt like my Gospel-centered, Biblically-based messages were needed on their station!

Second, INSP's international broadcast offered us a similar opportunity in a prime hour that will go into over 150 nations throughout the world.  It would have been wrong not to accept it!

Therefore, starting September 12th on GEB and September 14th on INSP, Forest Hill will have the opportunity, on a weekly basis, to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ both nationally and internationally.  Practically every nation on the face of the earth will see and hear a Forest Hill witness! It is a fulfillment of Acts 1:8 and Matthew 28:16-20.

I wanted you to know of my commitment to preach to Gospel in season and out of season, whenever God gives me the opportunity.  I want you to know that your tithes and offerings are being used in many different ways to fulfill what Jesus commanded his church to do.

Again, we didn't seek this out.  It sought us out.  But God's best blessings are most often surprises, as is this case.

As always, please know I only want the Lord Jesus to receive any and all the glory!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Here is a leadership truth I’ve gleaned in my over three decades of leadership.  More and more, I believe this truth is the key for long, successful leadership. What is it?  It’s simply this: your job as the leader is not to use people for your glory but to serve people for their purposes.  My job as a leader is not to see people as means to get what I want.  My job as a leader is to serve people to help them get what they want.

In other words, the leader’s job is to serve, not be served.

People are smart.  They sense if you are using them for your own glory.  They may not see it initially, but eventually they will see it.  They will tell others about it.  They will resent the leader.  And, over time, the leader loses his or her effectiveness.

But when people genuinely see a leader caring for his people, giving not getting, serving not being served, they will run through a brick wall for him. They will go to extraordinary lengths to help him succeed.  When this happens, everyone wins!  But it’s only because the leader has set the example.

But what a great example to follow!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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My wife and I are now empty nesters.  For the first time in almost three decades we don’t have children to send to school and look after. However, this time of year brings remembrances of the times when we had to:

1. Send them off to elementary, middle and high schools.  Each period of life was different. But they all demanded a certain sigh of the heart.

2. Send them off to college.  They were leaving the home forever.  Now they were in different environments, ones where we had no oversight.

Yet in both sendings, Marilynn and I learned certain truths, ones indelibly etched on our hearts as we watched them walk out the door to go to school.  Here they are:

1. We constantly remembered they are God’s children.  They are gifts to us, on loan, from our Creator.  Therefore, it was his job to oversee them.

2. We can and should pray Psalm 91 over them every day.  The angel armies of heaven are at our beckon call to oversee every need here on this side of eternity.  Therefore, God expects us to ask him to send his angel armies to care for, oversee and protect our children.  Pray this every day.  It has great power!

3. We can trust that God is using everything that happens to our kids this day for their good and his glory.  We refuse to fear.  We choose faith. They are God’s kids.  His angels are looking after them.  God is working  in their lives in ways we can¹t see.

These three, simple truths allow us to send our kids out the door, to whatever school to where they may be going, with confidence.  We need not worry.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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I want to spend one more day looking at what makes a meaningful marriage.  Here are the qualities of a long-term, successful marriage: 1. You are really, really excited when the other succeeds!  There is no competition between you at all.

2. You can hold each other all night, with rapt joy, and a sexual thought doesn’t enter your mind.

3. You want your kids to be like the other.

4. Nothing separates you.  There is a spiritual bond and connection between you that is not seen but deeply known.

5. There’s no other friendship like the one you have with your spouse.

Does this describe your marriage?  I hope so.  And if so, rejoice!  You have a treasure beyond compare, a gift in life like no other!  You have all that’s necessary for a wonderful, long-term marriage!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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I’ve been thinking a lot about what makes a meaningful, successful marriage.  There are a lot of factors, I know.  But the following are a few that come to mind when I know my wife and I are really close:

  1. You can sit in a room silently, not speaking a word to one another, and at the end of the evening you feel very close.
  2. As the years pass by, you start to behave like the other person.
  3. As the years pass by, you start to look like the other person. (And for those of you with spouses who are much better looking that you are—like in my case—you should regularly thank God for this truth!).
  4. Each other thinks he or she got the much better end of the deal.  That’s the case in my marriage.  I know I married well above myself.
  5. You can be totally goofy with your spouse and you know you’ll get a laugh and not a look of condemnation.

Well, how did you do?  Does this describe your marriage?  If so, spend some day in thanksgiving for a very wonderful gift in your life!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Here is my last truth to share with each of you. This insight comes from my Dad.  “Son,” he would say to me, “always remember.  The more you stir manure, the more it stinks!” Catch the picture.  Sniff the image.  Got it?  Then enjoy the truth.

Sometimes, in life, there are situations that are complex, sticky and smelly.  They come to us all.  It seems the more you try to figure them out, or address them, or talk them through, the more difficult they become.  This is especially true when it comes to talking about people.  There just seems to be no end to the ceaseless talk and counter-talk that occurs.

That’s when Dad would always say, “Let them go.  Don’t talk about it anymore.  Just trust it’ll all work out.  The more you talk about it, the worse it’ll become.  Give it up and move on.”

Then he’d always end the discussion with the words, “Besides, the more you stir manure, the more it stinks!”

I’ve never forgotten his words.  I’ve had the privilege of letting things go before they start to smell.

Thanks Dad, for wise, wonderful and truthful words!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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My wife gave me this counsel some years ago.  I’ve never forgotten it. She said, “David, always remember that there are a lot of people out there who want to suck up to you to get something for you.  You may think they have your best interests at heart.  But they don’t.  They will use you as long as you will let them.  Be careful!”

That last “be careful” from her is because I can tend to be gullible.  I tend to believe the best in people.  I’m a natural encourager.

I can especially be used when I think someone can help get me something I want.  But thoughtful con men see right through it.  They use my desire for something against me.  They use it to hook me.  Eventually, I am the one to be misused and eventually get hurt.

Therefore, I’m much more careful with my friends.  I’m even more careful with choosing my confidants.  I realize the truth of what my wife said to me.  Usually, taking a good bit of time with the person gives me the best insight into whether I can trust someone.  Most con men don’t like to wait.

It’s a lesson that’s been very helpful to me!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Here is a valuable truth from my college basketball coach, Dean Smith.  He used to say all the time, “The disciplined man is the freest man of all.”  Over the years, I’ve learned how right he was. It’s the disciplined man who can say “no” to temptation.  It’s the disciplined man who can overcome hurts, hang-ups and habits that so often derail us.  It’s the disciplined man who can stay focused and not chase after rabbit trails.  It’s the disciplined man who knows how to stay away from distractions that can cause defeat.

Are you a disciplined person today?  Does your body control you or you control your body?  Do your appetites control you or do you control your appetites?  Can you say “no” to anything that keeps you from doing the urgent in your life.

If so, you are a person greatly blessed.  That means you are a disciplined person.

That means you are truly free!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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I’ve been thinking a lot recently about valuable truths different people or resources in my life have taught me, ones I want to pass on to my kids.  Perhaps they will help you too. The first piece of advice comes from 1 Corinthians 15:33.  It’s been invaluable advice for me.  It reads: “Bad company corrupts morals.”  It’s as simple as that.  “Bad company corrupts morals.”

But how powerful it is!  You become like the friends you have.  Friends are like elevators.  They will either take you up, or bring you down.

Therefore, it’s essential you be very careful with choosing your friends.  You need to make sure they have your best interests at heart.  They are your friends because they just love you for who you are and don’t want anything from you.

It’s a truth for kids, teens and adults.  No one is immune from this teaching. Bad company corrupts morals.  We become like the people with whom we hang around.

Therefore, choose friends who encourage you, desire the best for you, will dream your dreams with you, won’t give up on you and will always be there for you.  They are friends for a lifetime.

Plus, they help you produce the best of morals!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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How do you know if you have a close, meaningful friendship?  Here are a few thoughts I’ve discovered through the years that help signify a very close, meaningful friendship: 1. If you’ve been separated for a while, when you come together, everything seems to be the same.  It’s as if you’ve never been away from one another.

2. You really work hard to remove any obstacles between you.  The friendship is more important than anything else.  You want to make absolutely sure you are best friends forever.

3. You love to travel together.  When you have the opportunity to go to a new place, see new environments and cultures, the first person you think of traveling with you is your close friend.

4. The longer the friendship, the more time you want to spend with your friend.

Do you have a friend like this?  If so, you are greatly blessed.  You are a person who has the richest treasure in the world.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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There is nothing better than to have a close friend. We all need people who will stick to us no matter what. We need people with whom we can share our lives and no the other will always be there when we need to talk and share our lives. I’ve discovered that the test of a real friend is when life becomes difficult. When something stresses the friendship, does it still last? Does it still continue? Is your friend still there for you? Does the “glue” of friendship still hold when challenged?

They sharpen your thoughts and decisions. You are a better person simply because this person is your friend.

Acquaintances come and go. But friends stick closer than a brother or sister in your own family. They will never leave you or forsake.

Do you have forever friends? You are a person who has been greatly blessed. Enjoy them to the full…every day!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Someone once said that fatigue makes cowards of us all.  How true!  When we are tired, we feel things, say things, do things, commit to things that otherwise we’d never have done.  Fatigue drains our mental and moral acumen like nothing else. Therefore, we must all learn how to fight fatigue.  How?  Here’s one simple solution: take a day off every week.  In the Bible, it’s called a Sabbath.  It means one out of seven days is set apart for rest, relaxation, renewal and worship.  Interestingly, from the standpoint of Jewish law, it’s not a suggestion but a commandment.  It’s one of the big ten!  God must have known something very important for us all to follow!

One day out of seven for total rest to prevent becoming a coward.  That sounds like wise advice to me!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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Do you have pain in your life today?  All of us do.  You can’t live life in this world and not experience obstacles, hurts and pain. Today, as you approach your pain, try something different.  Instead of your pain controlling you, you decide to control your pain.

How?  Believe that God is trying to teach you something in your pain.  C.S. Lewis once said, “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain.”  The pain could be a place where God forces us to deal with obstacles that have prevented us from moving forward in life.

But also remember that if we are in a furnace in life, God is with us in the furnace.  If the odds seem impossible, remember that God has limitless power.

And the way you live your life amidst your pain could very well be the most powerful sermon those watching you will ever hear.  It will speak more powerfully than the most eloquent word of an faithful preacher.

Your pain could be for your gain…if you’ll just trust the God who controls all, yes, even your pain!

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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People ask me from time to time, “How can I have hope in God” There are 7 billion people in the world? How could God care about my problems today?” I then ask them how many spots a pin could prick their bodies. Could there be perhaps millions? Maybe a billion? Yet no matter what part of their body is touched by the pin, their brain feels it. I think that’s like God. All of us are parts of His created order. We are His children. Whenever we hurt, He hurts. He feels every part of His creation’s pain.

If you believe this, as do I, that means when I hurt, God hurts. When I feel despair, He feels despair for me. If I’m in the valley of the shadow of death, He is there with me. I can face every problem in life, knowing that God is there too. I am not alone, I have one with me who not only understands the pain, not only feels the pain I’m feeling, but is committed to walk through the valley with me.

That gives my heart great hope today & forever.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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This may seem like a simple piece of advice for you today.  But it could also be profound. Most all of us need to remember it, especially if we’re not practicing it. What is it?  If you’re having a tough time, don’t keep it all bottled up inside. Find some people you can really trust.  Share your hurts and hang-ups with them.  Talk things through.  Openly sure your feelings.  If you have a close friendship with your spouse, that’s a great place to start.  Or maybe a close friend would work.

Eventually, if things stay bottled up, our hearts pay the price.  The acid emotions of worry and resentment boil over and can affect everything from our moods to our physical health.

And if the problems are just too big for a friend to handle (and they can be!), be willing to seek professional help.  Go to your clergyman or a trained counselor.

Your problems can’t stay bottled up forever!  Talk them through today with someone who cares.

It’s a path to peace for us all.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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One of my heroes in life is Mahatma Gandhi. He transformed an entire nation by nonviolence. He is a wonderful study in how to live life. He said that seven things will destroy us. Notice that all of them have to do with social and political conditions.

  1. Wealth without work.
  2. Pleasure without conscience.
  3. Knowledge without character.
  4. Commerce without morality.
  5. Science without humanity.
  6. Worship without sacrifice.
  7. Politics without principle.

Gandhi’s seven deadly things may help all of us realize what’s most important in life, loving other people and giving ourselves away. In that and that along will we find life.

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AuthorDavid_Chadwick
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