Archive for October, 2014

ignorance-in-business-unethical

Did you know that God keeps a record of our sorrows and He records our tears?

Record my misery; list my tears on your scroll, are they not in your record?

Psalm 56:8

Did you know that God keeps a record of those who fear him and honor his name?

Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other, and the Lord listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name. Malachi 3:16

 

Did you know that God judges our secrets?

On that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus. Romans 2:16

Did you know that God knows the number of hairs on your head?

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God.  Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:7

OK…so maybe I went a bit overboard with scriptures on this post but only because these particular verses hit a little closer to home than most do because many of us are just going about our lives living in our own bliss right? Why do I say it this way? Because if any of us actually think we are going to skate underneath Gods radar because we consider ourselves good guys and we never really get into trouble or create problems? If you are someone who thinks because of that you will get to cruise right up into heaven?

I have some bad news for you…

For a man’s ways are in full view of the Lord, and He examines all of his paths. The evil deeds of a wicked man ensnare him; the cords of his sin hold him fast. He will die for lack of discipline, led astray by his own great folly.

Proverbs 5: 21-23

Guys, simply put…Ignorance is not bliss…just because you may NOT spend time thinking about God doesn’t mean He isn’t thinking about you. He pays attention to everything you do, everything you think and everything you say and for anyone to think otherwise is foolish…or at least living in ignorance. He made you in His image and because He is God, He is completely in touch and connected to everything about you…EVEN IF YOU DON’T THINK SO.

Your secrets are NOT secrets to God.

You are NOT the only one who knows your deep personal thoughts.                                             ignorance-is-bliss

God knows them too…

I hope this post is not the first time you are hearing that God knows what you are and who you are? Because if it is…well…that knowledge does tend to change the way you handle what you are thinking about and your deep secrets…or at least it should.

My point is this: because there is a God is out there who actually cares enough to number the hairs on your head, or who pays attention to just you, or keeps a record of your tears…Honestly guys, that is the kind of God you should look into further. Where else on this earth would anyone care like that? Short answer…nowhere. No one on this earth can know as much about YOU as He does…

Please don’t ignore what I am telling you today.

My simple recommendation…instead of living in denial that He doesn’t know anything about you or that all of the verses I quoted above don’t apply to you…

Instead…try calling upon His name, Jesus Christ, in order to change your direction.

Trust me on this one guys.

In the end, Ignorance of God and His ways will NOT be bliss…

Until next time guys…

believe_nischala

I know that a great deal has been written about Abraham, the patriarch of the Old Testament and honestly far more than I could ever begin to convey in a single blog post. The same thing can be said about how many times you or I have heard someone speak about this Abraham in our lifetimes. He is not only important to the Christian faith, but also to Muslims as well because he was the father of Ismael, who as it mentions in Genesis 16:12, was against everyone.

This man will be like a wild donkey. His hand will be against everyone, and everyone’s hand will be against him; he will live at odds with all his brothers.

Interesting verse, isn’t it? But let’s get back to Abraham because he does something in his lifetime that caused God to award him with status that I know all of us would give anything to have. God saw something very different in Abraham that gave Him confidence in knowing that He could essentially start over with the Jewish nation. Abraham was special in the eyes of God and that has always struck me…what made him different? What did he do that would cause the Creator to think in his mind, “that is my guy”? “He is the one I am going to work with” “I am gambling on him”.

When you read about Abraham you can see right away that he is a doer. He is a man of action when the situation calls for this. He wrestled with God over the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. He rescued his nephew Lot and his family when they were captured. But what I found most interesting with the story of Abraham is that “doing” is not what caused God to find so intriguing about him…it was Abrahams “believing” that actually moved God. In fact, the verse in the center of this post is what made me write this in the first place is in Genesis:

Abram believed the Lord, and He credited it to him as righteousness. Genesis 15:12

Think about this for a moment…for the very first time in the Bible, we see faith and righteousness mentioned together. Why is this so important? Because of this statement:

By Abraham just simply believing in God…down deep his heart, God gave him a right standing or a “different” standing with Him.

Abraham’s heart was turned toward God in an enduring trust, obedience and submissive relationship. Because of that rock solid belief, it changed his status with the Creator of this universe. Abraham didn’t conquer the greatest army in the world or climb the highest mountain…all he did was believe, and that belief caused his position with God…to be BETTER.

Guys, in almost every post I have ever written here on IronManStrength, I have expressed the fact that living in this imagesworld, as a Christian, is not an easy road. I don’t say that to depress you, I say it to encourage you because of the amazing journey we are all on together. What I find extremely encouraging about the story of Abraham is simply the fact that even though what he saw in front of him was contrary to what God told him…He still believed. Here was a guy who was told his offspring would out number the stars and this would all begin with his very own son…and he was over 100 years old and his wife was a ripe young 95…but, guess what? He still believed…

Then the word of the Lord came to him: “This man will not be your heir, but a son who is your own flesh and blood will be your heir.”  He took him outside and said, “Look up at the sky and count the stars—if indeed you can count them.” Then the Lord said to him, “So shall your offspring be. Genesis 15: 4-5

Guys, hear me out for a second…how does this really apply to you? How does the story of some old guy who lived over 2000 years ago make a difference to any of us right now? It’s simple really…

Abraham had problems – we have problems

Abraham had struggles – we have struggles

Abraham had family issues – all of us have family issues

God spoke to Abraham – God can speak to us

The difference:

ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD

Not lip service…but real belief…that is truly what it comes down to guy’s…actual belief that God can do what He says He can.

When you believe God inside your core that He can be trusted…your relationship with Him changes. When you are obedient and submissive toward God and not allow that arrogance inside all of us to show through…things will change.

I encourage you to take your own belief to the next level by trusting God.

Establish a “right standing” with Him…

Do you Believe?

Until next time guys…

 

 

 

 

Marketing Plan

Has anyone ever accused you of over thinking an idea or a plan? Maybe you were looking at something at work and you analyzed it so deeply that you lost the point in the first place? I am referring to the condition of “paralysis by analysis” sound familiar?

I was recently reading in Luke’s gospel where Christ pushed the disciples out of the proverbial nest and sent them out to spread His gospel and heal the sick in order for Him to determine if they actually learned anything because of the time spent with Him. I think the most interesting portion of these few verses was the fact that God didn’t send his disciples out with the Christian Marketing Plan or lets say, a better planned journey? No, that was not His way. Instead, He sent them out with empty hands.

 

Jesus called the Twelve together. He gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to heal sicknesses. Then he sent them out to preach about God’s kingdom and to heal those who were sick.

He told them, “Don’t take anything for the journey. Do not take a walking stick or a bag. Do not take any bread, money or extra clothes. When you are invited into a house, stay there until you leave town. Some people may not welcome you. If they don’t, shake the dust off your feet when you leave their town. This will be a witness against the people living there.”

So the Twelve left. They went from village to village. They preached the good news and healed people everywhere. Luke 9:1-6 NIV

 

Why would Christ ask His disciples to begin ministry this way? Why would He specifically send his disciples out and tell them NOT to bring anything, or pack anything, but rather just go? He gave them advice and then told them to depart. He didn’t send them to classes or make them read and test out on the basic tenants of the gospel. He also didn’t load them up with the 5 steps to salvation books.

Does that sound like a great marketing plan for spreading the gospel to you?

Well, that’s the interesting part because to you and me, Christ’s marketing plan doesn’t look like much of anything that would ever succeed, let alone thrive for a couple thousand years. But as I have mentioned here before in this blog, God does not think like you and me. Christ had a very different idea in mind for His disciples while out on the road. He didn’t want them to over think any planning or preparation for this journey but rather fully rely upon Him for the strength. He didn’t want them to focus on the worry that comes from planning the itinerary, but rather focus entirely on Him for guidance.

If I were to analyze myself, I would say I’m a guy who is proactive and more of a planner than not…I do tend to spend certain amounts of my time in preparation for whatever challenge I’m about to take on and I would also say that in some cases, I probably do over think and over plan more than I should.

Now, please don’t misunderstand me here. Christ is NOT coming down on planning or planners like you and me, but rather he’s making a distinction between the “action” versus the “preparation”. In reality, all of us, during any planning process can over think something and then experience the aforementioned paralysis by analysis.

My point is simple, when it comes to just getting out there and doing something or saying something for Him,

Christ’s plan for us is very simple;

JUST DO IT…

Don’t hesitate

Don’t plan

Don’t worry

Just do

All He wants is your “doing”.

Our only job is to trust in Him exclusively and rely upon Him to take care of our needs by providing us the necessary words when we are required to speak. That is exactly the same advice He gave to his disciples.

He just told them to go with the clothes on their back and their empty hands.

To some of you who will read what I am saying you will think this is absolute craziness. There is NO way you would or could ever consider anything I am writing here. Without a plan, it is NOT happening…

Sounds like you may be paralyzed?

All I am asking from you is to just think about the real Christian Marketing Plan…

When the opportunities present themselves…just go…just speak…and He will take care of the rest…

 

Until next time guys…