March 1, 2015

This Sunday morning, March 1st, will be the first Sunday in our Youth and Journey Land new quarter for our children’s classes.  However, our adult classes will take one more Sunday in the current studies before launching off into the new quarter of classes on March 8th.  Charlie Branch will lead a study in the Auditorium on Sunday mornings, and Shaun Sidden and Scott Mills will lead the Millennials/Young Adult study upstairs.

Now is the time to recommit to being active in our Bible classes!!

I’ll begin a study in the New Classroom entitled 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do.”  It’s taken from the newly released book byAmy Morin, who is a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist.  13 Things started out as a blog post and article that “went viral,” as they say, with over 10 million views when it was published on in December 2013.

Amy writes not just as a well trained and experienced counselor but from the perspective of personal loss herself.  After already experiencing the loss of loved ones, her father-in-law was diagnosed with terminal cancer.  She writes, “I knew what was coming, and it filled me with a sense of dread.  I found myself thinking, Here we go again.  I didn’t want to go through such a staggering loss all over again.  It just didn’t seem right.”

Amy realized through her own experience and professional training and career that she could suffocate if she found herself buried in feelings of how unfair all of this was.  Just a few weeks before her husband’s father died, she made up her mind.

I sat at the table thinking about how unfair it was, how hard it was going to be, and how much I wanted things to be different. I also knew I couldn’t let myself go down that road.  After all, I’d been through this before and I’d be okay again.  If I let myself fall into the trap of thinking my situation was worse than anyone else’s, or if I convinced myself that I couldn’t handle one more loss, it wasn’t going to help.  Instead, it would only hold me back from dealing with the reality of my situation.  It was at that moment that I sat down and wrote my list, “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do.”  They were the habits I’d fought so hard against to come out on the other side of my grief.  They were the things that could hold me back from getting better, if I allowed them to take hold of me…Focusing on what not to do has made all the difference.  Good habits are important, but it’s often our bad habits that prevent us from reaching our full potential.  You can have all the good habits in the world, but if you keep doing the bad habits alongside the good ones, you’ll struggle to reach your goals.  Think of it this way: you’re only as good as your worst habits.

You can get more info on Amy and on her book here:

While we can do lots of the right things, Amy says our bad habits will drag us down and sabotage our best efforts to be mentally strong.  This study will help us identify 13 of those bad habits, and what we can do to overcome them.  Interestingly, we’ll find these actions are quite consistent with the teachings and life of Christ and the rest of inspired Scripture.

So here is a list of what we’ll cover in this study.  Can you guess which Scriptures/Bible stories we’ll be covering with each one?

  1. They don’t waste time feeling sorry for themselves.
  2. They don’t give away their power.
  3. They don’t shy away from change.
  4. They don’t focus on things they can’t control.
  5. They don’t worry about pleasing everyone.
  6. They don’t fear taking calculated risks.
  7. They don’t dwell on the past.
  8. They don’t make the same mistakes over and over.
  9. They don’t resent other people’s success.
  10. They don’t give up after the first failure.
  11. They don’t fear alone time.
  12. They don’t feel the world owes them anything.
  13. They don’t expect immediate results.

Bill Allen

Dr. Bill Allen preached at South Fork from 2005 to 2015. He received a Bachelors degree in Bible from Oklahoma Christian in 1978, a Masters in Bible from Abilene Christian (ACU) in 1988, and a Doctor of Ministry from ACU in 1992. He now preaches at the West Erwin Church of Christ in Tyler, Texas.

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