Archive for the ‘Proverbs’ category

HOW TO ACHIEVE SUCCESS!

August 22, 2016

“Remain in Me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me.” (John 15:4, NIV)

Success

Oftentimes, inspiration comes to me in a “vision” – even in a dream – of what God is planning for me. When I have difficulty visualizing His plan, I find myself lacking attentiveness and motivation. As much as I want to do God’s will, it’s very difficult for me to move forward with purpose and passion. I need to know where I’m going. I need to know where God is leading me!

When I started my business a few years ago, I did so with the understanding that I would dedicate my work, and my life, to the Lord. As I sought His guidance, I hadn’t fully received a clear picture as to where I should focus my efforts. As a result, I was “out of sync” every day and had difficulty maintaining my enthusiasm.

After stumbling around on my own for some time, I decided to turn to prayer. It was during this quiet time that I realized the Holy Spirit has always been with me and that He has directed my every move. He has never made demands on my time, but has always waited patiently for me to look for Him. And, yes, I found Him – right where He’s always been – waiting for me to open my eyes.

When I spend time with Him, I am in His will and He guides every step I take. Proverbs 3:6 teaches, “In all your ways submit to Him, and He will direct your paths.” As long as I follow His advice, I know where to find purpose and clarity.

You may not hear God’s voice the same way I do, but He is patiently waiting to hear from you. Ask the Holy Spirit to fill you each day and to guide your actions and decisions. Good things happen when you spend time with the Lord! I now have the confidence and motivation that comes from knowing that I am on God’s designated path and that He will guide every step I take. He is the overwhelming focus of my life!

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ”!

Work for Christ

WHICH PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE DO YOU TRUST?

March 4, 2016

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5, NIV)

Debate

I must be crazy. I can’t get enough of the 2016 presidential debates. This election season has become a circus and reminds me of a poorly produced reality TV show. I look at this great country of ours and find it hard to believe that those on the debate stages, both Democrat and Republican, are the best qualified people to serve as president. The name-calling, bullying, backstabbing, demeaning, and vulgarity simply do not represent the best qualities of leadership that I admire or want for this country or for the rest of the world. I am truly concerned for the future of our grandchildren. What kind of leadership are we teaching them? Is there a place for Christianity in politics?

I’m not going to rant and rave about any particular candidate. I simply want each of us to take a step back and think about our future. What kind of leader would you like to see in the White House? Who do you trust with the lives of your children and grandchildren?

Perhaps you’re just looking for free college, lower taxes, higher wages, or inexpensive healthcare? Sorry folks; everything comes at a price! All of the candidates on the debate stage make promises that are difficult, if not impossible, to keep.

Not one of the presidential candidates has the ability to bring the peace and security to our families that they promise. None of those candidates can keep us safe from the attacks of Satan or save us from our sinful selves. None of them can offer us eternal life!

It really doesn’t matter who is elected president of this country. Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, will still be in charge of all things. Our Almighty Father will be with us no matter who is president of this country.

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9, NIV)

Yes, we’re going to choose one these men or women as the next president of the United States of America. It’s extremely important to understand we are simply electing a new president. We are not electing a new Savior! We must never replace Christ’s values with their values. We should always, always keep Christ first – from the time we wake up in the morning to the time we close our eyes at night.

There is no debate – Jesus Christ is, and will always be, in control!

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

 

FIND YOUR “NEW” SELF!

April 3, 2014

“But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.” (Colossians 3:8-10, NIV)

Colossians 3-8

Generally speaking, when problems occur, we react. Most of the time we react instinctively, not rationally. We react according to our human nature, not according to our spiritual nature.

Recently one of my clients called me to inform me that I had made a mistake. My first thought was one of denial. “That’s impossible. I don’t make mistakes,” I thought. But after I had taken time to think rationally about the situation I realized that I do make mistakes. We all make mistakes. It’s human nature; none of us are perfect.

As I look back on how I used to react to these types of situations, the “old me” would have become angry, thrown out a few choice four-letter words, and even made up a little white lie to place the blame somewhere else. But my “new self” is aware of the changes the Lord has made within me. The Lord has given me a sense of control – an ability to be more understanding, more patient, and less angry.  He has blessed me with the presence of Jesus in my life – a role model in whom to follow as problems occur throughout my day. Unlike Jesus, however, the “new me” will never be perfect. I will always struggle, but with the help of the Holy Spirit, I am learning to control my human nature and to express my spiritual nature. I am humbled and honored to believe that I am slowly being transformed into someone who looks a little more like Jesus every day.

“For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding. He holds success in store for the upright, He is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for He guards the course of the just and protects the way of His faithful ones.” (Proverbs 2:6-8,NIV)

The Lord provides a way for each of us to gain understanding and knowledge. When we live for Christ, He becomes our shield and protects us when things get out of control. When problems arise – and believe me, they will – we have someone to turn to, someone who understands human nature just as well as He understands spiritual nature. When problems arise, d0n’t return to your “old self”. Turn toward Christ. Allow Him to help you find your “new self”.

Work for Christ

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

 

GIMME MORE!

October 4, 2013

Then He (Jesus) said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” (Luke 12:15, NIV)

Shopping Mall

Some people love to shop. They have a perpetual desire to buy, buy, buy. The craze to find the latest and best deal is worldwide. There are huge shopping centers in China, Saudi Arabia, Canada, the Philippines, the United States, and all around the world. A rise in store purchases and online buying show that shopping is a global phenomenon.

Shopping can be fun, and even relaxing, to some people. There’s nothing wrong with trying to find a good deal and to enjoy the things God has given us. But when we become preoccupied with obtaining material goods, we lose focus.

Jesus challenged His listeners with these words: “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” (Luke 12:15, NIV) He went on to tell a parable about a man “who stores things up for himself,” (Luke 12:21, NIV) but is not concerned about his relationship with God.

How can we learn to be content with what we have and not be consumed with amassing more? Here are some ways:

Lord, our hearts often run after “stuff.” Teach us not to be obsessed with collecting more and more material goods. May we instead learn what it means to be “rich” toward You. Amen.

To be rich in God is far better than to be rich in “things!”

Rich in Faith

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

HAVE YOU BEEN ON A GUILT TRIP LATELY?

August 28, 2013

“Guilt is banished through love and truth.” (Proverbs 16:6, MSG)

Guilt Trip

What is a guilt trip?  It’s simply making someone feel guilty to get them to do what you want. Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?  It’s really quite easy once you get the hang of it.  Here’s how it works.

Let’s say a friend tells you about a wonderful day at the beach they enjoyed over the weekend.  You can usually start them on a little guilt trip by saying something like, “That sounds fun.  I wish I had a friend who invited me to go to the beach with them.”  In theory, this will make your friend feel bad for failing to ask you to join them.  That’s all there is to it!  They’re on a guilt trip.

Though it’s sometimes fun to joke about guilt trips, the fact is, for many of us the subject of guilt is no laughing matter.  Guilt can be a heavy burden to bear – a weight on the heart that’s hard to lift off.

Have you ever experienced true guilt? Real remorse? Perhaps it happened as a result of harsh words, broken promises, dishonest dealings, a lost temper, or neglected duties?  If you’ve ever done anything you wish you could undo or said something you wish you hadn’t said, then guilt has more than likely paid you a visit.  When confronted with guilt, many people push it deep down inside or just ignore it altogether. Why? It’s uncomfortable and often painful.

King David understood the pain of guilt.  After committing adultery with the wife of one of his most loyal soldiers, David gave the order to have the man killed hoping to cover his own crime.  But David’s deeds were discovered and guilt hung heavy on his heart.  But unlike so many who experience guilt from their mistakes, David didn’t push the feelings away or ignore them.  Instead, he poured his heart out to God. His prayer is found in Psalm 51.  Here’s a part of David’s confession to God:

“Have mercy on me, O God,
    according to your unfailing love;
according to your great compassion
    blot out my transgressions.
Wash away all my iniquity
    and cleanse me from my sin.

Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

(Psalm 51:1-2, 10, NIV)

David was willing to come honestly before God and confess his wrongdoing.  As a result, God offered him forgiveness and lifted his burden of guilt. The record of David’s story reveals that God not only forgave David, but even called David a man after his own heart.

If you are experiencing guilt right now, don’t beat yourself up. Why cling to the guilt that weighs your heart down when God’s grace can lift the weight off?  There is no offense you’ve committed too great for God to forgive.  The truth is, nothing from your past can keep God from your future if you embrace Him in the present.

Remove the Guilt

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ”!

STAY ON COURSE!

May 23, 2013

“Without good direction, people lose their way; the more wise counsel you follow, the better your chances.” (Proverbs 11:14, MSG)

instruction-manual

Have you ever tried to put something together using an instruction manual? All of the details seem to be buried in the assumptions. Where is the ON button? What is a #8 reverse threaded nut? It sometimes seems like we need an instruction manual for the instruction manual. That’s because other human beings have written these instructions.

God, however, wrote the instruction manual for our lives. He is the only One who could because He is the One who designed us. When we run into trouble, He left two important ways to communicate with Him. The first is PRAYER. Prayer is a direct line that never transfers you to voice mail. You get to “speak” directly with Him. The other is guidance. Guidance is all about all listening. It means that we deliberately seek help not only from Him, but also from other Christians. We can’t follow the course alone. God has engineered the world so that we need the advice, direction and the assistance of others. Living in community is intentional.

When we drive, fly or sail, we are constantly making tiny corrections so that we won’t have to make huge ones later. We all understand this. But when it comes to personal decisions, we seem to have moral amnesia. We think that we can run our own way and then make course corrections at the end. That just doesn’t work! Guidance is intended to give small bits of course correction over time so we won’t run into trouble down the road.

Have you built guidance into your life? Do you deliberately seek the wise counsel of God and other Christians? If you don’t, you’re really missing the boat. Without guidance, failure is inevitable. Think about it. Pray about it!

guidance

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ”!

WHAT DOES GOD EXPECT?

May 17, 2013

How does God see our roles at work?

God-at-Work

If you are in charge of managing others, consider this: Scripture assures us it is God who exalts a person and places them in a position of leadership (Psalm 75:6-7), with Jesus as the head over every power and authority (Colossians 2:10). All things were created by and for Him (Colossians 1:16). So if you are “the boss,” recognize that God Himself has put you in charge to act on His behalf in an organization created by Him.

As the boss, your job is to do good for those you supervise (Romans 13:4). As Paul instructs, you are not to “pull rank” and order your employees around, but appeal to them in love. Motivate and encourage them to do good works (Philemon 1:8-9). Resist showing favorites by including only a few in important matters (Ephesians 6:9). Walk the floors, spend time with your employees, listen to their ideas, invest in their lives, and extend the love of Jesus. Their roles and job titles may not be the same as yours, but as you work in harmony, each member will feel equally valued, and you will see productivity and morale go up (Romans 12:16).

If you are an employee, obey your leaders and don’t complain or cause trouble. Whether or not your boss is a follower of Jesus, you are called to do your work with excellence and go that extra step – not to win favor or to show off, but out of respect for Jesus because it is for Him you ultimately work (Colossians 3:22–23).

Give an honest account of your work and be truthful (Proverbs 12:22). Resist participating in gossip that can betray a confidence and cause you to lose credibility and respect (Proverbs 20:19). Try to please your boss and not talk back disrespectfully or steal, but show you can be fully trusted and God will look more attractive to them (Titus 2:9-10). And be gentle and calm, even when your customers or co-workers aren’t (Proverbs 15:1).

No matter where you are on the organizational chart, being known as a person of integrity will ultimately bring you favor and influence.

integrity

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ”!

Inspired by Helen M Mitchell, founder of Strategic Management Resources (strategicmgmtresources.com) All rights reserved.


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