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Obedience in Faith

By | Day 20, Day 22, Day 23 | No Comments

This morning my high school aged daughter told me about a sermon by Matt Chandler that she was listening to.  The sermon was called “God is Able”.  The message was focused on Moses in Exodus Chapter 4, and Chandler spoke about the key to finding the power of God in our lives.  I can’t seem to shake this thought that he shared: “The omnipotent might of God almost always flows through obedience in faith.” The pattern then is still the same today … God speaks, we obey (exactly), then God shows up in an amazing way. God was not concerned with Moses’ past, his excuses, his brokenness, his limitations, his abilities.  God had all that covered.  God simply wanted Moses to act in obedience rooted in faith.

I’m so thankful for a daughter who pursues God and points me to sermons.  I’m also thankful for a God who pursues me and patiently points me towards obedience.

If I Tell You My Story

By | Day 08, Day 10 | No Comments

Sometimes you come across a song that really expresses what you are thinking even better than words alone. The video below, by Big Daddy Weave, blends the telling of our story and God’s story in a powerful way. May you be encouraged by it, and moved to tell your story to someone today.

Light of the World

By | Day 08, Day 21 | No Comments

I was recently reading a few posts over at www.moredisciples.com, and came across this one from Brian Flood. As I read through it, I wondered …. you ever feel this way too?

 

“You are the light of the world…” There are days I sure don’t feel like that. Yet here is God declaring exactly what I don’t feel over the purpose of my life. Early in my walk with Jesus I read those words with a sense of accomplishment; “now the world gets to see how the Lord works through me.” Perspective is a powerful thing and now, when I’m not feeling so ‘light-of-the world’, I feel the weight I have placed on that statement. I, too often, do not finish the thought and see the real meaning. A lightbulb consists of several parts most of which have no purpose in themselves. Nothing the parts do can fulfill their own purpose. It’s not until power is applied that the purpose of any of them becomes apparent. Even then, the light is turned on to complete the work of another. “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” Father, give me your power to fulfill your purposes.

Four Fields

By | Day 25 | No Comments

Have you heard of the “Four Fields” strategy, a practical approach to entering a community and establishing a cycle of gospel sowing and harvest?  For a simple introduction, check out the video below by Chuck Wood.  You can also click the following link for a more detailed PDF file.

Four Fields Of Kingdom Growth (PDF)

Motivation

By | Day 21, Day 23 | No Comments

I was recently reading a devotional by Os Hillman that talked about the relationship between obedience and motivation.  The exercise of reflection was good for me, so I wanted to pass it along to you as well.  Here’s what Os wrote:

“I have observed this process in the scriptures in working with people through years of ministry. I have noticed three distinct stages. First, we live based on convenience. Our obedience is largely based on circumstances in our lives. We choose to obey based on the circumstances.

The second stage is the crisis stage. God allows a crisis to come into our lives. We are motivated to obey God in order to get out of the pain of our situation. Many times God allows us to stay in this condition in order to demonstrate His love and faithfulness during our pain. Gradually, we discover something new about God and often have a personal encounter with Him that changes us. Our very nature is affected by this God-encounter.

This begins to move us into a third phase that is a relationship that is motivated now by love and devotion instead of pain. This is where God desires us to be. Another way of saying this is we are no longer seeking His hand. We are seeking Him. We want to know God personally.

Obedience will not last when the motivation is only the removal of our pain. Obedience only lasts when the motivation is loving devotion. Where are you in your obedience and what is the primary motivation? If it isn’t love, why not tell the Lord you love Him today and want to know Him for who He is and not for what He can do for you.”

Food for thought ……

Threat or Opportunity?

By | Day 05, Day 06, Day 12 | No Comments

Hardly a day seems to pass that we don’t see something in the news about immigration or large groups of people moving across political borders.  Whether by people seeking asylum, pursuing economic opportunities, fleeing persecution, or forcibly displaced by war or famine, nearly every country in Europe and North America is affected by this in some way. Although the issues are complex and the solutions often seem distant, I wonder if we might view things differently if our perspective shifted a little.  What if this were more about an opportunity for the Kingdom, rather than a threat?  Check out the video below and maybe it will give you some food for thought.

Dandelions

By | Day 21, Day 27 | No Comments

I was recently reading a group chat between a bunch of marketplace folks in the Washington DC area who meet regularly to encourage each other in the faith as well as pray for their country’s leaders. The conversation was about flowers …  dandelions to be more exact. They started to list out some attributes of dandelions and then see how many we as workplace Christians share in common.

The group noted, among other things, that dandelion is a French word meaning lion’s tooth.  They remain in seed form, dormant, but suddenly appear everywhere when winter is past and springtime approaches (Song of Solomon 2:11-12).

As I reflected further, a few more features came to mind. Dandelions may be seen as weeds by those around them. They are designed to spread and take their seeds near and far. They are driven by the wind (2Peter 1:21). They are tenacious (or at least in my yard they are!). They are prolific.

As you reflect on the dandelion, make a list for yourself. How many of its attributes are true in your life? Is your life’s season more like winter or springtime? Specifically, how do the features you listed manifest themselves as you seek to advance God’s Kingdom through your work?

God Before Gold

By | Day 03, Day 10, Day 22 | No Comments

Someone recently forwarded me an item from Christianity Today titled “Meet the Rio Olympians Who Put God Before Gold”.  The article covered interviews with 2016 Olympic Team USA Christian athletes. I was struck by the variety of people and stories they had, as well as the perspective many of them held even though they were the very best of the best in their professions.  As they speak, let God speak to you too.

 

Shawn Johnson (gymnast) –  even if I won “12 more Olympic gold medals…it’s not my purpose in life, and He will always be my greatest reward.”

Madeline (Maya) DiRado  (swimmer) – “I think God cares about my soul and whether I’m bringing his love and mercy into the world. Can I be a loving, supportive teammate, and can I bless others around me in the same way God has been so generous with me?”

Michelle Carter (track and field) –  “People notice how I am living out my faith. Sometimes it takes me by surprise how much they notice. Even when no one is looking, the way I act is important because it is a reflection of how I walk with Christ.”

Gwen Jorgensen (triathlon) –  “I really think you just have to keep God as your focal point and know that he is always number one. When you do that, it will help you to gain perspective on everything in life—not just endurance sports.”

Jordan Burroughs (wrestling) –  “I’ve been blessed with tremendous gifts, and it’s my job to use those gifts to inspire others. As a man of faith, I take great responsibility in being a good steward of my talent. God has created unique … avenues to allow me to glorify him.”

David Smith (volleyball) –  “It’s been a big thing for me to understand that my joy and my peace do not revolve around my performance or how I do compared to other people. My joy comes from the fact that I am playing a game I love and that He created me to play.”

 

As you reflect on these quotes, check out more from Shawn Johnson in the video below.

(Extra)Ordinary

By | Day 06, Day 17, Day 19, Day 20, Day 22, Day 23, Day 25, Day 26 | No Comments

Ever wonder how ordinary people, using ordinary resources, can have an extraordinary impact for God’s Kingdom? That’s the heart behind Zume (Greek word for leaven), a new disciple making / training movement that launched February 14th.  To learn more, go to their website at www.zumeproject.com and also check out the video below. Zume will change your life, and the world.