IT’S ABOUT TIME!

Posted October 14, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: Job, Old Testament

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A person’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed. (Job 14:5, NIV)

Job 14_5

We are limited to twenty-four hours a day, every day. As much as we would like, we don’t have the luxury to extend the amount of time which is available to us.  And, not only are we limited to the number of hours available in the day, we are also limited as to the number of days we have here on earth. Unfortunately, none of us can be certain as to how many days, weeks, months, or years we may live. Only God knows for sure. We often act, though, as if we are going to live forever – as if we are invincible and can do whatever we please for as long as we please.

Our time is scarce. It’s extremely valuable. The way we spend every minute of every day is important, not only to us, but also to God. If we’re not careful and intentional, external factors will govern the allocation of our time. Things that are most urgent, not necessarily the most important, will claim top priority and we will begin to lose control of our time.

I can’t tell you how many times I commit myself to spending at least a half hour every morning in worship. My intentions are good, but when I sit down at my computer, the first thing I do is to check my email. What a mistake! There is always something that needs a reply or my attention in some way. Before I realize it, I’m caught up in the daily grind. All of a sudden, I’m too busy to spend a few minutes with the Lord. Or, just as I get started with my quiet, worship time, the phone rings. I can’t let it go. I’ve got to answer it. I have to take care of whatever or whoever needs me. I’m important, you know. I must be or they wouldn’t have called me. And, again, the Lord is on the back burner.

It’s hard to stay focused when we are so busy. I started this “post” this past Saturday while my wife was shopping at the mall. I sat down in the food court with a cup of Starbucks coffee and my computer and started writing. I got to the previous paragraph (where “the Lord is on the back burner”) and guess what? I placed the Lord on the back burner …. again! Here it is Wednesday and I’m finally going to finish this.

I don’t know about you, but I need the Lord in my life. I need Him daily! I need Him when things are going well and I need Him when things aren’t going the way I’d like. I need Him because He is a friend. He’s someone who can fill me with love, forgiveness, gentleness, peace, and happiness. I need to do better! I need to keep Him first in everything I do!

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

OPINIONS – WE ALL HAVE THEM!

Posted September 22, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: New Testament, Romans

Tags: , , , ,

Accept one another, then, just as Christ has accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. (Romans 15:7, NIV)

Romans 15_7

Opinions. We all have them. Unfortunately, nobody on this side of heaven has it 100% right. There are hundreds of different variations of Christianity each with a different interpretation of the bible. To name just a few, we live among Catholics, Lutherans, Episcopalians, Methodists, Seventh Day Adventists, Baptists, Pentecostals, Presbyterians, etc.  In addition to Christianity, our society includes Muslims, Buddhists, Sikhism, Islam, Judaism, Baha’i Faith, Confucianism, etc. We also live among the gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and transgender communities. We all come from different backgrounds. We come from Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America. Every culture is completely different from the others. Each has its own identity and beliefs.

As Christians, we claim to follow Christ, to model our lives after Him. I realize that is an impossible task, but there is one simple little thing we can do to show that Christ lives in us. We can accept each and every human being that we come into contact with throughout our day. And, even though I say it is simple, it is often extremely difficult. God has given each of us free will and not every person lives according to the principle of “accepting” one another. Many people are confrontational and judgmental (including myself much of the time). But that’s when we need to let our light shine. We need to step above our will and choose God’s will. We need to ask the Holy Spirit to direct our paths and place our trust in Christ.

God did not send His Son to die a painful, excruciating death so He could save only the Baptists, or the Catholics, or the Methodists. He sent Jesus to this earth to save all people – Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, gays, lesbians, Africans, and Australians. We are all precious in His sight!

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

NOW THAT’S A “SELFIE!”

Posted September 11, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: New Testament, Romans

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For from Him and through Him and for Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen. (Romans 11:36, NIV)

We would like to believe that life is all about us. It’s about pleasing ourselves. It’s about isolating ourselves from those who are different from us. It’s about doing whatever it takes to get ahead in life, no matter who it may hurt. It’s all about living in the “selfie” generation. It’s about living a life through social media where we can create the kind of person we want the world to see, but not necessarily the person we have actually become.

The truth is: life isn’t about us. It isn’t about pleasing ourselves. or separating ourselves from others. It’s not about “selfies”. It’s about sharing the love of Jesus, focusing the lens on Him, not on ourselves. Our joy comes from Him. Our peace comes through Him, and our lives are to be lived for Him and for His glory.

So the next time you take a “selfie” look into your own eyes. Do you see Jesus in that picture? If He’s not there, delete that photo, re-focus your life, and try again. Keep trying until everyone who looks at you, sees our Father looking back at them. Now that’s a “Selfie”!

Enjoy your day “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

DON’T COMPLICATE THINGS!

Posted September 10, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: Galatians, New Testament

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For in Christ Jesus … the only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. (Galatians 5:6, NIV)

So, don’t try to tell me that everything will be okay if you could just make a little more money. Don’t try to tell me that a promotion means you’ll never have to worry about status ever again. Don’t try to tell me that a new house, or new car, or a better social life will bring you the happiness that’s been lacking your entire life.

… the only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. Status, money, or material things don’t matter to our Savior. He is looking for us to have faith in Him and to express that faith through love; love for Him and love for each other! Don’t make things more complicated than they are.

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

MAKE THE RIGHT CHOICE TODAY!

Posted August 31, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: Old Testament, Psalm

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Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; for He is our God and we are the people of His pasture, the flock under His care. Today, if only you would hear His voice … (Psalm 95:6-7, NIV)

PRAYER-SERIES

Father, today is a new day.  A day that presents important choices for each one of us.  A day that marks a new beginning. Please hear our prayer.  We are not perfect.  We have made so many mistakes.  We don’t deserve your love or mercy.  But we come to you today, asking forgiveness for our past sins, asking forgiveness for making foolish choices with our lives, and asking forgiveness for following the ways of the world instead of following the ways of the Lord, the way that leads to eternal life.

When you created us, you gave each of us the ability to make our own decisions.  Left on our own, we have made a number of poor choices. We have chosen to please ourselves instead of pleasing you.  In many cases our decisions have been based on how others view us, on ways in which to get ahead in our careers, on ways in which to accumulate more wealth, or on ways in which to satisfy our own flesh.  On our own, we have failed.  We need your presence in our lives. We need your guidance in our decision-making.  Fill us with your Holy Spirit today, right now, so that we can make better choices.  Give us the strength to turn away from worldly desires, from our own selfishness, and help us turn toward you, our Lord and our Savior. Nothing – absolutely nothing – will ever be more important.  Amen.

May God bless you today and every day as you continue “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

ARE YOU DRAWN TO EXTREMES?

Posted June 26, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: Colossians, Galatians, Hebrews, Job, John, New Testament, Old Testament

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“What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me. I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil.” (Job 3:25-26, NIV)

extreme

Many of us are drawn to extremes. In some instances, pushing our limits can be a positive, uplifting thing. In most situations, however, especially in today’s society it can be a dangerous practice. We live in a world that tells us to “work longer hours”, “sleep less”, “quit wasting time”, “spend more money”, “obtain a better lifestyle”. Our tendency is to follow those directions because everyone else is doing it and we feel like they are all getting farther ahead in life than us. We don’t want to be left behind, do we?

Hold on a minute. Where does the bible tell us to live toward those extremes? Those messages we hear from the world aren’t from God. He didn’t design us to live with extreme calendars, extreme finances, or extreme work ethic. He designed us to be in relationships with one another (John 13:34-35, NIV). He designed us to work as if we were working for the Lord, not for other people or ourselves (Colossians 3:23, NIV). He designed us for rest – rest from work and rest in Him (Hebrews 4:10, NIV).

We can try to convince ourselves that our extreme lifestyles are designed to please God, but be very careful in the way you are thinking. It’s not a sin to have a great job, or lots of money, or the desire to take care of your family. Just make sure you get your priorities straight. God is first! Everything else will fall into place when you live your life for Him! He is calling us to a life of “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.” (Galatians 5:22-23, NIV) It seems to me that a life filled with these things would be much more attractive than one which is fast-paced, filled with greed, and totally out of control. 

If you’re driven toward extremes, turn to Christ! Live extremely for Him!

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ!”

Work for Christ

GET CONNECTED!

Posted April 29, 2015 by "Working for Christ"
Categories: Acts, Ecclesiastes

Tags: , , , , , ,

They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.
(Acts 2:42, NIV)

GET CONNECTED

My last post sounded a bit desperate. Social media and technology have been making this world smaller and smaller. We hear about things now that would have taken weeks, if not months, to hear about just twenty years ago. And, in many cases things used to go on in this world that we never heard about at all.

The whole idea behind Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media sites is to stay connected with our families, friends, social groups, old classmates, and so on. Unfortunately some of those websites and apps connect us to some pretty dark places. It’s up to us to know when to draw the line and back away.

There is one place, however, that we can all go to stay current; where we can get connected and stay connected to those people that can help lead us out of the dark and into the light. As you guessed, that place is the Holy Bible. For more than two thousand years, the Bible has taught us to stay connected to each other – with no mention of computers or Smartphones:

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12, NIV)

It was the connection of those who responded to my last post that helped me realize that I shouldn’t even try to get through troubles and challenges by myself. When Jesus Christ is the focal point of your life and you are connected to other Christians, you are never alone. When we experience pain and loss, our connections are there to comfort us. When we are overcome by fear and anxiety, our connections give us perspective; they help us see things in ways we may have overlooked. When we need truth, they can teach us. They help us discover and understand the things we hadn’t been able to grasp on our own. When we get stuck, they set us free. They speak the truth and push us forward. When we face complicated questions and are confused, our connections listen and counsel us. When we mess up or make mistakes, they are there to correct us and to offer mercy. They remind us that we are loved, despite all of our flaws and failures. Our connections through Christ remind us of the One who gave His life so we could enjoy eternal life. Our connections through Christ will be with us for eternity – long after Facebook and Twitter have departed from the social scene.

Get connected and stay connected! The Bible and those who strive to become like Jesus are the most powerful social media tools you will ever need.

Enjoy your day, “Working for Christ”!

Work for Christ


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