“Let Me Know What I Can Do For You?”

We are so  honored to be with you each day sharing hope. Our outreach has grown at a tremendous pace. We just past 96,625 in followers. That’s because people are searching for hope and we provide it.

WE HAVE A WINNER!! We will be notifying the winner by email, if they put in the right email address. I will also let you know about when the winner subscription happened, so you can know that it may be yours. 

We are starting a new promotion and the winner will be the person who is the 100,000 subscriber. That is a huge milestone for us. More details later. 

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Doug Bolton, the founder of Signs of Hope, is writing  a new book, “Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life.” It reaches out the military and veterans who may be battling anxiety, fear, depression, addictions, rejections, PTSD, and many other usual suspects. There are 22 military connected suicides every day. That is almost one every hour. We need to help stop those statistics. Be looking for more details about the new book. Doug just interviewed a WWII veteran, for the book.  Fascinating! Look for updates here.

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I have seen this happening many times. A person is hurting. Another person is there with them. The hurting person shares their hurts, and the other person says, Let me know what I can do for you, and then walks away. Nothing happens. the hurting person is still hurting. The other person has forgotten all about the conversation before the day is over.

Unfortunately we live in a society like this today. No one seems to care. No one wants to get involved. No one likes talking about serious things with a friend.

Let me share a parable with you:

A man is driving along a curvy road and loses control of his car. He goes over the embankment and crashed into a tree.  The car is starting to catch on fire. Another man comes by and sees the car. He shouts, Let me know what I can do to help. 

Really?

What is that parable telling us? It is saying that we need to take action and do it now.

That leads up to another parable by a man much more saintly than I am. Our own Jesus Christ.

There was a man who was walking along on a road to Jerusalem. It was a dangerous road. There were many robbers and thieves who attack there.

The man was attacked by thieves. They beat him, and tore off all of his clothes. They left him there to die.

A priest came walking by and saw the man. He went to the other side of the road to avoid the man. Another man came by, and he also crossed to the other side to avoid the man.

Then a Samaritan came by and felt pity for the man. He went to help him. He bandaged his wounds, took him to the nearest Inn and cared for him while he recovered.

He even told the Innkeeper to keep track of any monies the man owed and he would come back and pay all of it.

Which person are you? Would you cross to the other side of a road to avoid a hurting person? Would you tell them, Let me know what I can do,” but keep going?

Reach out to the downtrodden. Help those who suffer. Be a good Samaritan. You will be happy you did and so will God.

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all..never, ever, give up! 

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Adversity? Be Strong and Persevere

We have another promotion where there will be prizes. The next winner will be the person who is our 95,000th subscriber. As you found out here, it goes very fast. We average over 30 new subscribers a day. We will get there pretty fast. We just passed 91,100. If you haven’t already subscribed please do by clicking on the icon right after the title of this post.

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Doug Bolton, the founder of Signs of Hope, is writing  a new book, “Signs of Hope for the Military: In and Out of the Trenches of Life.” It will be reaching out the many military and veterans who may be battling anxiety, fear, depression, addictions, rejections, PTSD, and the many other usual suspects. There are 22 military connected suicides ever day. That is almost one every hour. Doug wants to help stop those statistics. Be looking for more details about the new book. Doug Is also seeking military who would be willing to do an interview. It will be part of the book. Sharing by actual soldiers will help many others.

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Have you ever wondered why things happen? Why me, seems to be a phrase we use a lot.

I have been down that path. I have wondered why I have had six major surgeries. I have wondered why I have suffered so much pain. I have wondered if God really cared.

Have you been there? Have you had more than your share of dark clouds and storms? Do you wish you could stay in bed all day to avoid the rush of the world?

We have all had to face some kind of adversity. We all have had to tough it out under heavy stress and anxiety.

So, what do we do to fight back? What can we look to for help through all these trials.

It isn’t WHAT we can look to it is WHO we can look to.

I have learned:

  • God is in charge. There really needs to be no more said here.
  • God is there during our darkest hours. As a matter of fact that is when He is the closest.
  • We often grow in strength when we face a storm and conquer it. We become more ready to keep walking on the path God has for us.
  • All storms end and then there is the SON.

I am not saying we should be tough and quite complaining. Life isn’t fair sometimes, and we don’t have to ignore that. We need to fight back with God on our side.

Be strong and persevere.

Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Win Your Battles during the Winter Periods

King George and his army must have been having a good laugh. George Washington and his Continental Army had been whipped in battle after battle in their campaign to become independent from Britain. British troops had driven the Americans out of New York City, across the Hudson River, across New Jersey, and finally into Pennsylvania. Then came the winter of 1777, at a place outside of Philadelphia called Valley Forge. Washington’s troops faced not only a physical winter there, but an emotional winter. Discouragement and defeat may have been their worst enemies. But General Washington wasn’t about to let those enemies win. He fought back by immediately deploying his soldiers to fortifying their camp. Then the drills began. A veteran European military officer began to drill those soldiers every day, teaching them a single set of maneuvers rather than the multiple approaches that had created confusion in those past battles. That winter, they were learning one way of doing things while Washington worked on getting more recruits and building his army into a real fighting force. Many historians believe that the outcome of America’s battle for independence was decided at Valley Forge more than any battle – an army that came out of Valley Forge to stun the British with major victories. One army went into the winter at Valley Forge – divided, discouraged, demoralized. Another army emerged from that winter. They were unified, they were fortified, they were confident because of what they had done with their winter.

In many ways, the outcome of your battles may be decided, not on the battlefield alone, but in how you use your winter. And you may be in one of those cold, bleak times right now. You could succumb to your fears and your feelings and just surrender. Or you could pull a spiritual “Valley Forge.” You could use your winter to get stronger, more together, more focused on what you need to do to win.

In some ways, Jesus’ disciples expected their winter to begin with His announced departure to heaven. The One who had called them to be with Him was now leaving them and entrusting to them the work He had started. In Luke 24, Jesus tells them to tell the world about Him and then, “…while He was blessing them, He left them and was taken up into heaven.” In a way, their winter had begun, as it often does when you lose someone you love. But they knew what to do with their winter! In Acts 1 and 2, we are told how the responded “they all joined together constantly in prayer.” Then they got their team of 12 back to full strength by replacing Judas with another disciple. And, “When the day of Pentecost came (that’s the day God sent His Holy Spirit), they were all together in one place…and all of them were filled with the Holy Spirit.” At that point, they exploded on the city of Jerusalem with the Gospel that would, that day, start spreading around the world.

But they had to use their winter to get together, to get stronger, and to get closer to God. You need to handle your winter that way. Don’t just sit there worrying or feeling sorry for yourself or wallowing in your emotions. Take action to get strong. Spend extra time with God right now. Strengthen your relationship with your family and your coworkers. Think through what you need to stop doing and what you need to start doing to focus on what really matters. And prayerfully plan for a future, right there in the middle of your valley, even when the future looks very uncertain. While the bombs were falling on London during World War II, Winston Churchill was in his underground bunker – not worrying about the bombs, but actually planning the invasion of Germany!

Discouragement and fear and drifting from God – those are your greatest enemies, not what faces you on your battlefields. This winter is not dead time or despair time. It’s get ready time. What you do with your winter will decide whether you win or lose!

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Don’t Despair-Mighty Mouse Will save the day

 * I am again sharing and excerpt from my book, “Signs of Hope: Ways to Survive in an Unfriendly World.”  This is the conclusion of Part I of my book. It is a good one to help you plan for a wonderful New Year if you follow and believe what it said:

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Don’t Despair—Mighty Mouse Will Save the Day

I used to love the cartoon “Mighty Mouse.” The song always got me pumped: “Mighty Mouse is on the way. Mighty Mouse will save the day!”

You probably have had some down moments in your life in the year 2010. Here are some thought to help you start out the new year with a positive note:

I have some mighty answers for you. It is the Doug Bolton “Top 20 Countdown” that will help you save the day and love God. With apologies to David Letterman.

20. Do you have trouble getting to know someone? Is it hard for you to make friends? Remember: Strangers are family once you get to know them.

19. The world is divided into two categories: the ones who will accomplish a great deal, and those who won’t accomplish anything. You will be the one who will accomplish much, if you allow God to help you.

18. No one is going to love you more if you are fat or skinny. They will love you because of the person you are. 

17. When you hate someone and want them to hurt, you hurt yourself. Spend more time trying to help others feel good about themselves, and you will feel good about yourself too.

16. You do not need to let stress control you. You do not need to be a workaholic. It is OK to rest. Jesus takes over when you can’t cope.

15. When you feel depressed because of losing a loved one, remember God knows your pain. He saw His only Son buried.

14. When someone is trying to degrade you, it is time for selective hearing. 

13. You just took another breath while you read this. Thank God for it.

12. When you marry, you need to stay together even when the skin starts to wrinkle and the excitement fades.

11. God’s goal is not to make us happy; it is to make us His. It is not to give us what we want; it is to give us what we need.

10. If God doesn’t come to your rescue right away, maybe He is waiting until you give away your pride.

9. Don’t apply labels to people until you have examined the contents.

8. Everyone is unique even down to the fingerprints and DNA. God has a plan just for you and wants you to use the talent He gave you. Yes, you!

 7. The greater the future you have, the greater the attack will be from the prince of darkness. Pray for God’s protection, and Satan will be fish bait!

 6. While you can’t control someone else’s heart, you can control yours.

 5. Don’t say, “Thanks, God, I can take it from here,” and then not check in with God until the next crisis. Pray without ceasing.

 4. All the great hitters in baseball fail two out of three times.

 3. The most common command in the Bible? “Fear not.”

 2. Practice makes perfect. Study God’s Word each day and learn more of His love for you.

 AND the number one reason you will conquer depression is … (Drum roll please)

 1. God made you in His own image. Shouldn’t that make you think He wants everything to go well for you? Trust Him to provide all your needs—emotionally, physically and spiritually.

The teacher blood left in me now has an assignment. Start your own positive list of thoughts to help you fight off depression. Read it every day and add to it. 

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

You made it through a life that was a swamp full of alligators and horrible storms! Now we move on to more sunny days. We move on to where there is hope. We move on to the light at the end of the tunnel. We move away from those alligators that will be made into shoes if they don’t leave you alone.

Depression and the many other mental afflictions do not go away in a flash. I still have bouts with them from time to time, but I quickly concentrate on the positive. I concentrate on God and all His love He has to share with me. I concentrate on my family, my children, my grandchildren. I concentrate on the good things that have happened in my life.

Because I do all that, I see that the pluses far outweigh the negatives every time. It is like the song says: “Count your blessings; name them one by one. Count your many blessings; see what God has done.”

If you can’t think of enough blessings, know that I love you with all my heart, and so do millions of other people who suffer with the many afflictions in their lives. We know your pain, and we are praying for you daily.

We are many, and Satan is only one stupid misguided angel. We can defeat him if we all work together. We are an unbeatable team when we have one goal. That goal is to live productive Christian lives in which we stand on solid ground, not on the shifting sands of our emotions.

* What follows is a lead in to the second section on prayer.

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The rest of the journey through this adventure guides you to a stronger relationship with others and God. As you read, place the thoughts in your memory banks so you’ll never face bankruptcy. Use them to build a foundation that is strong. Positive words are like building a home on cement. Negative words are like building a home on sand. Let positive words soothe your broken heart, broken dreams, and broken relationships. Use them to open your heart to love, open your mind to God, and open your future to everlasting life.

The next few pages share the importance of prayer and how it affects your life. Prayer has saved my hide more than I want to admit. My hide would be hanging on Satan’s prized trophy wall if God hadn’t saved me. Now Satan is grass and I am the lawn mower with God’s help.

I will be sharing some excerpts from the second section in future posts, if they relate to what we have for topics on this site. I am not trying to sell books; I am sharing from the heart of what I actually wrote on the subject.

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