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How to Not Live Like Skim Milk

November 4, 2013 13 Comments

“We talk cream, but we live skim milk.” – Dwight Moody

Cream 

Several years ago my wife Janice and I were delivering some food and praying with the residents of a low income housing complex. One of the lady’s we regularly visited would squeal like a little girl when we showed up with fresh fruit, something she rarely could afford. She would always sit outside because she could not afford to run the AC (Or she didn’t have AC). We delivered some plums and prayed with her. As we were about to leave she grabbed our hands and prayed one of the most beautiful blessings over Janice and me. By looking with our natural eyes this lady looked like she had nothing, but in reality she had everything. She not only knew how to talk like cream, she knew how to live it.

 I know as a Pastor it can be easy to have faith for someone else and preach with boldness to strand strong on the Word of God. However, it can be a challenge believing it for myself. I can talk the sweetest cream but find myself waking up on Monday morning feeling like and expecting skim milk.

 To live like cream

  • Live by faith – Yeah I know you are thinking well I have heard that one 1000 times before. But to live by faith you have to be OK without having all the answers. You have to be OK without knowing the reason behind every little circumstance of your life. If we knew it all, we would not need faith. So focus on trust and step out.
  • Pray for God to change your heart – The fact is that you can’t make yourself stop sinning. You can’t make yourself want to pray more or read the Bible more. Until Jesus comes back and fully restores all of creation our human flesh will always chase after its own desires and pleasures. Only God can build the passion for His will in your life. – So ask for that desire. Sure you may have to create some new positive habits as your step of faith, but it is God that truly makes you different.
  • Quit thinking like the world. – God’s definition of success does not equal more money, a better job, or even an easy life. God’s success is your ability to live a life for His glory with His peace and joy despite what your circumstance look like. 
  •  Bless what you have. I love the story when Jesus fed the 5000. When Jesus prayed he never asked for more fish and bread. He simply blessed those two fish and five small loaves. (Matthew 14:15-21). Be grateful for what you do have. Bless it and watch what God can do with it.
  •  Focus on Jesus – God’s promises are real; however, we can’t let ourselves fall into the trap of seeking the benefits of a life with Jesus more than we seek Him. The bulk of our energy and investments should be living for the one who gave His whole life for us. (Tweet This)

God has called us to live a rich full life. Let’s do everything we can to live out every last ounce of all that God has for us.

 I will take the cream over skim milk any day so let’s live that way. 

 Your voice is important; I would love to hear from you.

How do you live a life of cream?

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photo credit: Thomas Hawk via photopin cc

About the Author:

I am enthusiastic about helping others discover their purpose and grow into a deeper relationship with Jesus. It is great to see their eyes light up at their “Ah Ha!” moment when they discover they were created for something more. My hope is that this blog will help encourage and inspire you along your way. Join the conversation and take the time to share with me your own story. I have been married to my beautiful wife Janice for over 25 years. We currently live in Stockbridge Georgia with two of our children Matt and Victoria. Our oldest Chris has left the nest. Of course we cannot forget about our dog Taffy.
  • Jon Spellman

    Good stuff! The cream always rises to the top does it not? I prefer the richness of the cream over the watered down skim milk any day. Now if can only convince my wife of that…

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Yes I consider Skim Milk in the same category as Caffeine Diet Coke – I mean what is the point. I might as well just drink water.

  • http://www.manturity.com/ Manturity

    Jon, great post. I love the line “She not only knew how to talk like cream, she knew how to live it.”. Secondly, I have “disliked” skim milk since I was very young. So I don’t need to worry about wanting it…

    All five of the main points are powerful. They also take a higher level of maturity and understanding. As you say, we will never be perfect at executing all of these, but we must try. Everyday I will try.

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Thanks Bryan for your comment. We are all a work in progress, but at least we are moving in the right direction.

  • http://www.paulsohn.org/ Paul Sohn

    Wow, I love this post Jon! Actually you reminded me of me stop talking like cream, and let my actions and behaviors speak for itself. One person who exemplfies this is my dad. Though he has been a man of few words, his actions were 100% cream. Thanks for writing such a great post my friend.

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Thanks Paul I am glad you enjoyed the post. Talk can be easy. I know I need to step up to the challenge to live it out. – My dad was the same way. I know he was not perfect but he always seemed to have a positive attitude; and he was always willing to change his own plans to help someone else.

  • Betty Draper

    I love this post too Jon…oh to live like cream, how rich that sounds. Going to use that in my bible study as a challenge to the ladies…lets live like rich cream and not watered down skim milk. Encouraging post brother.

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Thanks Betty, I am glad you enjoyed your post. I hope it challenges the ladies. We all need to step up conduct ourselves like cream.

  • http://dbartosik.com/ David Bartosik

    Great metaphor! So many applications can say focus on jesus and they would be complete. We don’t need an action plan or step by step…..focus on jesus…..the more we think about him the more things change in your life that are aligned with a life that reflects one that treasures christ

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Great point David, “We don’t need an action plan or step by step…” We are so influenced by all the “motivational” plans we try and solve all our issues with a 1,2, 3 step plan. I can talk myself up but it is never lasting. Our focus needs to be on Jesus and that is where we need to invest energy.

      • http://dbartosik.com/ David Bartosik

        hahaha amen and amen!

  • http://thoughthouse.org/ Micah

    ‘Bless what you have.’ – What a great truth, and I love the way you explained it. It’s something I’m learning the value of more and more these days. When we focus on what we have rather than what we don’t it just builds a gratitude that changes the way we experience life.

    • http://www.jonstallings.com/ Jon Stallings

      Thanks Micah for the comment. It is still something I am learning to live out