As I was reading this morning in Luke 1 about the birth of Jesus… There was a statement in vs. 38 – “May it be to me as you have said.”
As I read that statement, it got me thinking about what God has said about me… God says:
I am a dwelling for the Holy Spirit (Eph 2:22)
I am a new creation (2Co 5:17)
I am a friend of Jesus (Jn. 15:15)
God supplies all my needs (Phil. 4:19)
God loves me and has chosen me (1 Thess. 1:4)
His plans for me are good (Jer. 29:11)
My steps are directed (Prov. 20:24)
There are SO many things God says about me… My prayer is, “May it be to me as you have said.”
My Point: I want it to be as God says it is for my life, my families life, my churches life, and my friends life…
MORE HIM, less me
As I was flying last week over Uruguay. I looked out the window and saw this view… I began to think about the 3ft. view… What do I mean you ask? Well, as we flew over the capital city of Montevideo, I looked and saw a beautiful city, you could see the layout of the city, the way the roads were laid out, the old center of the city, the way the only golf course was laid out… You could see the vision that the builder and the city planners had for the capital… As we were flying over, I began to think about the 3ft. view… The people we would encounter, the relationships we would build, the lives that we were going to have a part in their lives never being the same… We met several young men from Uruguay, we worked side by side with them all week, from morning to night, we spent time sweating together… Those relationships will last forever…
My Point: Vision is important, but nothing can replace the 3ft. view, the relationships, the face to face time we spend with each other…
MORE HIM, less me
I took this picture while in Uruguay over the past 10 days… If you look at this picture, you see what appears to be a shack… You may be asking, “why would you take a picture of a shack”, well, I wasn’t… I took a picture of native Ostriches in Uruguay…who knew they had native Ostriches… As I was looking through the pictures we took, I wondered why I took this picture, until I looked closer…
Many times in life we just “glance” at our surroundings, we don’t take time to really find the beauty in our surroundings… That includes the people we’re around… There are people all around us that have a lot more than meets the eye… They have beauty, talents, abilities, etc.. That we miss sometimes because we don’t take the time to really SEE what’s around us…
Take the time this holiday season to see the beauty around you, who knows you may find a new friend, or see things you would’ve never known where there…
MORE HIM, less me
I follow several different blogs, and read as many books as I can assimilate into my life… but I also read things that may or may not surprise you.. The latest article that I am trying to assimilate, not only for myself, but for the businessmen and women I am privileged enough to have a voice with… This was an article I read in the “Harvard Business Review…9 things Successful people do Differently”
1. Be specific. “Lose five pounds” is a better goal than “lose weight,” because it’s specific. “Knowing exactly what you want to achieve keeps you motivated until you get there,”
2. Seize the moment. “Did you really have no time to work out today? No chance at any point to return that phone call? Achieving your goal means grabbing hold of these opportunities before they slip through your fingers.”
3. Know exactly how far you have to go. An honest and regular accounting of your progress will help you achieve your goal, “If you don’t know how well you are doing, you can’t adjust your behavior or your strategies accordingly. Check your progress frequently—weekly, or even daily.”
4. Be a realistic optimist. Engage in lots of positive thinking about achieving your goals, but don’t underestimate how hard it will be to get there, Studies show that thinking things will come to you easily and effortlessly leaves you ill-prepared for the journey ahead, and significantly increases the odds of failure.
5. Focus on getting better rather than being good. “Many of us believe that our intelligence, our personality, and our physical aptitudes are fixed—that no matter what we do, we won’t improve, As a result, we focus on goals that are all about proving ourselves, rather than developing and acquiring new skills. Fortunately, decades of research suggest that the belief in fixed ability is completely wrong—abilities of all kinds are profoundly malleable.”
6. Show some grit. Not only do studies show that gritty people get more education in their lifetimes and earn higher college GPAs, but they are also the cadets who will stick out their first grueling year at West Point. “Effort, planning, persistence, and good strategies are what it really takes to succeed,”
7. Build your willpower muscle. Like the muscles in your body, your self-control “muscle” also requires exercise. “To build willpower, take on a challenge that requires you to do something you’d honestly rather not do, Give up high-fat snacks, do 100 sit-ups a day, stand up straight when you catch yourself slouching, try to learn a new skill. When you find yourself wanting to give in, give up, or just not bother — don’t.”
8. Don’t tempt fate. Successful people know not to make reaching a goal harder than it already is, “No matter how strong your willpower muscle becomes, it’s important to always respect the fact that it is limited, and if you overtax it you will temporarily run out of steam. Don’t try to take on two challenging tasks at once, if you can help it.”
9. Focus on what you will do, not what you won’t do. “Plan how you will replace bad habits with good ones, rather than focusing only on the bad habits themselves, Research on thought suppression (e.g., “Don’t think about white bears!”) has shown that trying to avoid a thought makes it even more active in your mind. The same holds true when it comes to behavior—by trying not to engage in a bad habit, our habits get strengthened rather than broken.”
Are you & I willing to do the things that others won’t, to achieve things that others can’t? Are we willing to read things that others won’t, listen to people others ignore, live in a way that submits our will to God’s will? The great thing about Failure is, It’s NEVER Final!!
MORE HIM, less me
I recently heard in a staff meeting the line “Talent on loan from God”… I know, it’s something that is said by a well known, but not always well liked, Radio personality… But it got me thinking about Money. You know, by merely adding a “k”, you can spell “monkey”. After our staff meeting, i stayed in the conference room and began to think as I looked out the huge windowed wall in front of me, “There are thousands of people on the interstate heading out to make money…or going to school to prepare themselves for a life of making money.
We recently celebrated the time of year where we’re given an opportunity to help others around the world by supporting (financially) missionaries by filling out our “Faith Promise”. I’m “Promising” by FAITH to give X amount of dollars to missions. That’s what we Christ followers do…WE GIVE AWAY WHAT WE HAVEN’T EARNED! We believe that our life, the health we enjoy, the ability to work, the jobs we have (or will have), the material junk, the savings and IRA’s…it’s all a gift (on loan) from God! In fact, we believe all this “earth is the Lords”, He’s just loaned us parts of it for a while. When we give (tithe, offering, donation, whatever) we really are giving away what He owns and we’ve been loaned… Yes, I must still work like a monkey for money, but it’s a privilege and gift to do so. It brings me to a humble place of prayer; “God I’m going to need some more money…I gave away a bunch of it recently.” or “God give me the right perspective so that I’m not clinging desperately to that which I don’t honestly own”.
EVERYTHING we have is “On Loan from God” – even “Our” money…
MORE HIM, less me
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (NIV) says…
A Time for Everything
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
2 a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
6 a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8 a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
My Family is going through a season right now, our kids have left or are leaving home, getting married, having kids of there own, etc… Starla and I LOVE our kids.. We have LOVED having them around, interacting with them, having adventures with them, making memories with them. BUT, it was a season, seasons have a beginning and an END… If you notice, Ecclesiastes 3 lists a beginning (born) and an end (die), keep and throw away, war and peace, etc…
Whatever season YOU are in, ENJOY it… even if it doesn’t seem to be a good season right now, ENJOY because you know it will come to an end and you’ll move to another season!!
MORE HIM, less me
The last several days have been CRAZY!!! – I refused to get on Facebook… It’s a shame when Christ followers allow themselves to “Bash” “Condem” and “give whatever title you want” to others, whether they are a follower of Christ or not!! Many Christians really got wrapped up in the whole election process and lost their sense of Balance and for some even their cleanliness of walk before God over their desire to get a candidate elected. We should be THANKFUL that we live in a “free” nation, we should be thankful that we wake up each day and have breath and life to be with people we love, have food on our tables, and a roof over our head. The problem is we are a spoiled nation. Go to a 3rd world country where people are digging through the trash to find one piece of food but will give you the shirt off their back even if it’s the only shirt they own…then complain because you didn’t get the latest Iphone. Whether we agree or disagree about who should “run” this country we need to stand up united and pray for our leaders, pray for this nation, pray for all of the people living in this nation, and pray for all the people that WISHED they lived in this nation!! We are nothing without Him.. Maybe we should let “Hulk Smash” the negative talk, and begin to LOVE our neighbor as ourselves…
My Point: (I know it’s an old song, but it still rings true today!)
My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
All other ground is sinking sand,
All other ground is sinking sand.
When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.
His oath, His covenant, His blood
Support me in the whelming flood;
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my hope and stay.
When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh, may I then in Him be found;
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne.
“My uncle once told me that during World War II if an unidentified soldier appeared suddenly in the dark and could not state his mission, he was automatically shot without question. I wonder what would happen if we reinstituted that policy today.”
Being confronted with the need to know my mission forces me and hopefully would force you to reexamine who you are, and what you’re really about.
Have you ever REALLY tried to figure out you’re God given mission in life? Some people may call that a “life verse”, others may say its “life direction”…
As we go into this next week, millions of us will (hopefully) be going to the poles to vote for the administration, senator, congressman, etc. that most closely matches our mission, or the mission we think would be best for our country…
My Point:That privilege and even a responsibility that we all have is a GREAT thing, but as you decide this week, the future of our country, what about you, do you know YOU’RE MIssion in life?
What’s mine you ask? John 3:30
MORE HIM, less me
My son is preparing to go half way across the world to partner with those in Kenya reach the students IN Kenya… In preparation, we are trying to help him get everything he will need. This will be his first “Missions Trip”. We are excited for him, and excited to see what God is going to do IN him… He will get to experience things that a very small percentage of the typical American will ever get to experience. We are trying to also prepare him mentally & spiritually… When we see things we’ve never seen before, it makes an impression on our brain and can make an impression on our soul… We pray that God makes an impression on his soul!!!
My Point: If you have never had an impression made on your soul, take a short term missions trip… Get out of your comfort zone, and partner with an organization to see someone’s life changed… Take a group overseas, take a group to South America, maybe just take a group to the east coast to assist in the clean up after hurricane sandy… Make deposits in eternity, not your own pocket..
MORE HIM, less me