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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

God’s Love Fills The Earth

In summary of Psalm 119:64 it says, “O Lord, the earth is filled with you love; teach me your ways.”

Bottom line:
God fills our world with his love.  Please show me your ways.

What this means to me:
God’s love abounds even in the world around.  He holds all things together.  Our society may look like it’s crumbling, but God is always there and will show his love to those who turn to him.  I too must look to God and what he is doing around me.  I need to keep my eyes and heart open and join him.  I want to met with him each day and soak up what his word shows me.  I want to learn to do this his way so that it will go better for me and for my family.  God show me today your love and what you are doing in the world.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Humility Leads To Blessings

In summary of Matthew 5:3 it says, “God blesses those people who depend only on him.  They belong to the kingdom of heaven!”

Bottom Line:
God will bless those who depend on him, they are part of his family.

What this means to me:
God provides blessings when I’m humble and voluntarily take a lower position in relation to others.  When I humble myself, I show that I belong to the kingdom of Heaven.   God will truly bless those who depend on and realize their need for him.  I need to remember that with less of me there is more of God and his rule.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Being Ready For The Things God Wants To Accomplish Through Me

In summary of 1 Corinthians 2:9 it says, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

Bottom Line:
No one has conceived fully what God has prepared for those who love and follow him wholeheadedly

What this means to me:
God has plans that He wants to accomplish through me.  There are things that my mind can’t even fashion that He wants to do.  God has made and keeps ready this plans, however I need turn away from my own selfish desires in order to hear him.  Hearing him requires that I relate with him daily, thanking him for the blessing he has bestowed upon me and obeying his promptings.  In order to do this, I need to check in daily with him to see if I have any particular marching orders for the day.  If I don’t hear anything, then I’m to go about doing that which he has already told me (us) to do generally.  Today I will review all that I do in this light.  I will be ready for anything he wants to accomplish through me.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Characteristics For Success At Work

In summary of Colossians 3:23 it says, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as though you were working for the Lord and not for people.”

Bottom Line:
Do your work wholeheartedly and as if you were working for the Lord rather than your boss.

What this means to me:
That whatever work I do, be it in the workplace, at home or in ministry, I am to willingly work as though Jesus was my boss.  When I make Jesus my boss, then I do everything I can to do the best possible work.  I am not to just do the minimum to get by, I am to do my best work always.  I want him to be pleased with what it is I do.  Ultimately, my real reward will come from him and not my earthly leaders.  There are five key characteristics I need to excel at to be successful in my work.  

I need to:
  • Work with enthusiasm, regardless of the type of work, big or small.  I am to give it my best.
  • Sharpen my skills.  I should never stop developing, growing, learning and improving.  (It’s never a waste of time to sharpen the “ax”.)
  • Keep my word and be reliable always
  • Maintain a positive attitude, even when put under pressure or in the midst of change or unrealistic demands (I need to do everything without complaining or grumbling.)
  • Do more that what is expected of me, not just what is required.  
When I find myself tempted to cut corners (thinking, no one will ever know), I need to remember that God is looking down and sees everything I do.   I need to give him my best this week and the weeks to come.  I need to spend some time looking at some long overdue to do's that have been on my list.  I either need to get rid of them (they don’t really need to be done) or I need to pick up enthusiasm and get them accomplished.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Walking With Integrity, Keeping A Straight Path

In summary of Proverbs 10:9 it says, “The man who walks uprightly walks securely, but he who takes a crooked way shall be found out and punished.”

Bottom Line:
People with integrity walk securely, but those who take crooked paths will eventually be found out.”

What this means to me:
When I practice integrity in what I do in life, I can walk securely.  With honesty I can live confident and carefree.  Being shifty or side stepping integrity and taking an easy path to get what I want will eventually catch up with me.  I’ll either slip and fall and cause harm to myself or those around me or I’ll be found out.  I must be honest in all dealings and at all times. Doing so provides safety and reflects well on the one I really serve (God.)  To me, living with Integrity means:

  • I am to live by fairness, even if it seems to put me at a disadvantage or causes me more work or effort.
  • I fight fair, even when those around me are not.
  • My word needs to be my bond.  My “yes” means “yes” and my “no” means “no”
  • I am authentic and act the same no matter who is present.  What you see is what you get.
  • I am straight forward in my conduct.  I don’t hide what I’m doing and don’t say one thing and do another.  
  • I explain facts in an even-handed manner, and not in a way that makes me look better than others.
  • I am respectful, helpful and gracious to everyone.
  • I am to go the extra mile, with a smile and not begrudgingly.
  • I am to do more that is required of me
  • I am not afraid to ask for help or to let God be my strength.
  • I handle tough situations knowing that God is at work in me.
  • I focus on “whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable.” (Phil. 4:8)
Today I will review my recent actions and consider my future dealings to ensure that I am being in line with Integrity in my life.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Show Your Faith By Obedience

In summary of Matthew 11:29-30 it says, “Take my yoke upon you, put it on your shoulders.  Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

Bottom Line:
Walk with him and take his yoke, watch how he does it.  He won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.  

What this means to me:
When I decide (and this is a daily decision) to walk with him and take his yoke / learn from him, he teaches me to be gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart.  I then find much better relief, ease and refreshment for my soul.  For what Jesus teaches me is useful, good, gracious, pleasant and comfortable.  The actual burden of the day becomes much lighter and easy to bear.  Jesus calls me to a level of intimacy with him that can only be fulfilled by his constant presence in my life.  I can’t just say I have faith, but rather I must show faith by checking in with him daily and doing what he tells me to do.  (“Faith is only real when there is obedience, never without it, and faith only becomes faith in the act of obedience.”)  I can’t just follow a formula or set of tasks, I must simply follow him and do what he says daily.  Real faith is true obedience even when I’d rather just do what pleases me.  Today I need to substitute my own desires for his.

Friday, November 9, 2012

We Are Only Fully Alive When We’re Helping Others

In summary of Romans 14:12 it says, “And so, each of us must given an account to God for what we do”

Bottom Line:
In the end, each of us will have to give a personal account to God for what we did with our lives.

What this means to me:
No matter what I do, it is to God alone that I must ultimately have an answer for my actions.  When my life ends, I will stand before God and he is going to evaluate how well I served others with the life he gave me.  This means that one day in the future God will compare how much time and energy I spend on myself compared to what I invested in serving others.  As I reflect on that, no excuse for my self-centeredness will be solid up against that question.  God had created, saved and called me to a life of service.  God has already accepted me into his family, I don’t believe I’ll be punished but It will likely mean a loss of eternal rewards that he had planned for me.  Various scriptures reminds me that I’m only fully alive when I’m helping others.  Thus, If I’m not serving, then I’m just existing.  Life as God intended it for me is a life meant for ministry and ultimately God wants me to learn to love and serve others unselfishly.  i think the best thing to do moving forward is to remember this and not just at the end of my life but each day provide an account to God for what I do.  I also have to remember that my service must be done in love for others and not be-grudgingly or in a pouting mode because I would have rather just checked out and vegged.   Life will come alive when I help others.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

We Find Our Significance In Service

In summary of Romans 12:5 it says, "That’s how it is with us. There are many of us, but we each are part of the body of Christ, as well as part of one another.”

Bottom line:
Each of us will find our meaning and function as a part of his body and part of one another.

What this means to me:
Real significance in my life will be found as I function as part of his body, part of his church where I’m at and serving.  I’m part of the others, we belong to together to accomplish more than we can on our own.  Even though I’m just a part, together we make up one body we are dependent upon each other.  As I serve together in God’s family, my life takes on eternal importance.  I know that God wants to use me to make a difference in his world.  He wants to work through me.  What matters most is the donation I make of my life.  I need to not forget that what I’m doing as part of my congregation is of vital importantance (leading a Life Group, participating as part of the worship team.)  God will use my donation done in service to him.  It’s also a reminder to me of a theme that is coming up over and over again.  I am not to think more highly of myself than I should.  I need to be careful to not be too proud in what I do.  I want to change my outlook today to being a humble servant in what I do and that what I’m doing with others makes up a part of a body that is needed to function.  Until now I hadn’t quite thought how this relates to my job and work team.  Together we make up a body that has a function.  If we function separately we will never really accomplish what we need.  I need to also remember that I’m part of a larger team within my company and that myself and my team are not as much of an island as I was thinking we were.  Today I will re-consider acting as part of a larger team within my organization and not a unique island.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Learning To Humble Yourself

In summary of 1 Peter 5:6 it says, “So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.”

Bottom Line:
You need to realize your place and humble yourself before God.  When you do, he will lift you up at the appropriate time.

What this means to me:
I should not think so highly of myself.  I need to remember that I am only a servant and a steward of what God has given me and as such I need to realize my place and continually humble myself before him.  Whenever I try to elevate myself and think more highly of what it is I do, I need to step back and look at things from his perspective.  If I humble myself I’m more in tune with counseling and instruction I’m given.  I am not higher than anyone else and I don’t get to dictate my own ways.  God promises that if I do this then in the right time he will lift me up.  In summary this morning, I need to realize that I’m only his servant and no more.  What I have is what he has given to me.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Everyday Living

In summary of Ephesians 2:10 it says, “God planned for us to do good things and to live as he has always wanted us to live. That’s why he sent Christ to make us what we are”

Bottom Line:
God has a plan and purpose for us.  He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does.

What this means to me:
I am part of God’s masterpieces.  He made me who I am and has given me a new life from Christ Jesus; now I can be on track to do his will and help others in the way he has planned long ago.  God has called me to a service far beyond anything I could ever imagine.  He has me here, where I’m at to make a contribution.  I am to make a difference with my life. I am to serve.  When I serve, I’m actually serving God and fulfilling his purpose for me.  God has intended for me to accomplish His goals.  This morning I pray that I remember that I need to listen to and follow His guidance each day.  I need to check in and see what he may specifically have planned for me.  If I don’t hear any specifics, then I’m to execute His general will.

Faithful People Are Persistent People

In review of Galatians 6:9 I read “Let us not become weary in doing good , for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give...