Ministry Resources


“David was greatly distressed… But David found strength in the Lord his God.” – 1 Samuel 30:6 NIV

In the early 1920s, Dr. Evan O’Neill Kane was convinced that too many surgical patients were being put to sleep during their operations when localized anesthesia should be used instead. He considered the hazards of general anesthesia were greater than physicians of that day assumed. His opinions encounter skepticism, so Dr. Kane set out to prove his point.

On February 15, 1921 a sixty year old man was rolled into the operating room. Dr. Kane did not put the patient to sleep; instead he applied a local anesthesia and went to work. He removed the appendix and sewed the man up. The surgery went well and the patient assured the medical team he had experienced only minor discomfort.

The name of the patients was Dr. Evan O’Neill Kane. The doctor and patient were the same. Dr. Kane enjoyed a quick and complete recovery.

There will be times you will have to use the technique of strengthening yourself.

Mother Teresa said, “To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil in it.” The art of strengthening oneself in Christ is one of the most important habits to develop. Under the guidance of God’s Word, we may have to open ourselves up, take a look, remove an infected attitude or inflamed habit.

As leaders, we are not immune from becoming infected and inflamed by unhealthy attitudes and toxic thoughts. We can succumb to discouragement, bitterness, anxiety and depression. It’s helpful when others encourage us, but one of the best things we can do for ourselves and those we lead is operate on ourselves.

Psychologist Barbara Fredrickson suggests, “In order to achieve healthy emotional balance in our lives, we must have three positive emotional experiences for every negative emotional experience. She added, “Even more than three to one if we want to flourish.”

The following questions have been helpful for me this past month, as I am learning how to use the scalpel on myself.

How does God inspire you?

“The poor will see and be glad—
you who seek God, may your hearts live!
The Lord hears the needy
and does not despise his captive people.”
– Psalm 69:32-33 NIV

Start your day by pausing to seek God and his direction for that specific day. Make note of what fills your heart with goodness and gratitude.

What is stopping you from experiencing joy and laughter?

“A cheerful heart is good medicine,but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”
– Proverbs 17:22 NIV

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens… a time to laugh… and a time to dance.”
– Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV
Ecclesiastes 3:4 NIV

Create a funny file — cartoons, amusing stories…. Do something that brings joy to your soul.

Where are you experiencing kindness?

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”
– Ephesians 4:31-32 NIV

Lean into those environments and show kindness to others and yourself.

How are you giving thanks?

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
– 1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV

Write thank you notes to those who’ve had a significant influence in your life. Sit quietly and thank God. Thank Him for at least three gifts he gave you during the day.