Thursday, October 25, 2012

Where are you?

I think one of the most frightening verses in the Bible for me can be found in Genesis 3: 8-9 New Living Translation (NLT)

8 When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man[a] and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the Lord God among the trees. 9 Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

Where are you Adam? Wow, I can't imagine the fear he must have felt when he heard those words. How he must have heard in the depths of his mind Satan's laughing voice, "He's coming, and you have nowhere to run." He has no explanation to give for tasting what he knew should never have been eaten. He has no alibi to resolve his foolishness, and lack of self-control. He has gone where he knew he should never have been, and has crossed the line of no return.

As a father and husband to the love of my life of 18 years (just last week) I feel this verse to my core. I am not perfect. I am a hypocrite in many ways of the world, but I am a work in progress.  Like Jabez, I ask every morning "That your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain." (1 Chronicles 4:10)!

I know I have the power to lie, steal and hurt. I believe that sometimes it's harder to do the right thing than wrong. Should I give the extra ten dollars back to the angry cashier? Should I tell the wife I was where I was not? Should I kill those that I hate? What keeps me in check is fear. Fear of Him that seeks me. Fear that Hell has no fury like a women scorned. Fear of losing my children's hearts as they see what lies behind the mask. Fear of destroying their trust and stability of family by my thoughtless and selfish actions. Fear of spending time in jail!

I am not fighting any demons on these issues (which is good since my wife is going to edit this.). My heart is peaceful, joyous, and in check because I do live with a sense of healthy fear. The wolf lies in wait for us to open the door.  He waits to feast on our hearts and happiness.  All of this is what keeps me working to stay the straight and narrow.

I never want to have to hide from Him, my wife, children or neighbor as they come to walk in the garden.

 Lord help me never to hear the words "What have you done?"  Genesis 3:13

Monday, October 22, 2012

The business Covenant

For many years now, I have been trying to run a small financial business. I've worked long hours and I've had plenty of expensive training. Yet I still find myself struggling to turn a consistent profit. I looked back on my time past and came to realize that the reason for all the hardship and struggle is 
 I guess I could just type out all the Scripture verses that could go along with "all things are possible in me," but we all know them. I've heard them a thousand times in church. It's not the hearing or knowing that works out life's problems, it's the action you take with that knowledge. What am I doing in my daily life to look up for help, and know that it's there? What change do I have to make in my beliefs to trust the one above? These are the changes that I have had to make.

 Last week after an awakening from His words. I started to make that change. I knelt down and asked Him to buy my business for free. I asked only to keep me on as the working partner. To follow His rules and His rules only. To take the purpose of the business from a self serving ego driven outcome to working for the benefit of my family and the greater good of all.

I will confess that I have lived a life of financial selfishness. I count the pennies as the dollars fly out the window. I am a cheap soul. I provide a safe life for my family, but I could spend much more time being responsible to Him above than I do. I could provide more money for donations and charity with an open heart (with no need for recognition) than I do. I could trust in the words that follow.

2 Corinthians 9:10

New Living Translation (NLT)
10 For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity[a] in you.
I have now changed the name of my company to include the word Covenant as a reminder from this point on that I've entered into a new him and I. That I am now responsible for all things in business as in life to God above, and not my Ego.
Last week was the first profitable week in a long time. I wrote the check this week with a grateful heart, that he heard my prayers. I will answer his call to be a good steward of his blessing and use them to glorify his name and not mine.

Deuteronomy 8:18

New American Standard Bible (NASB)

18 But you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth, that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

UPDATE: 3/07/2015  I'm still struggling.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Bibles Bibles everywhere which one do I read

I took a few hours before work today to visit the local Mardels book store. I've been looking for awhile now to find the right Bible that calls out "You're going to love reading me." I must have looked like a lost soul standing in front of 100 different styles of Bibles when I was asked "Can I help you?" by a sales associate.With help, I was able to narrow my search down to four books. And after a lengthy comparison, I choose the 'Chronological Life Application Study Bible NLT.' I liked the extras that it included, such as maps, notes and pictures of the old world. It brings the readings alive and understandable. This will add to my enjoyment since I am both interested in the Word and the historical time lines. This is the soft cover leather bound copy.

 "Your word is the lamp to my feet and a light to my path" (Psalm 119:105).

The Circle Maker by Mark Batterson

 I just finished the new book by Mark Batterson "The Circle Maker." I found it to be a very good read and a book that you can put into practice talking to God. I will tell you that I struggle reading books on prayer. I find myself feeling unworthy of all the gifts that they tell me I should ask for. It is a dilemma for my mind. I know I am unworthy as a sinful man, so what right do I have to ask for things of this world? I do pray for health and safety for my family. I think that anything other than that is really not a need, just a want. How does GOD feel about me living a life unable to match His, and yet still asking for unlimited financial wealth and other worldly goods? I believe He hears me. I see His blessings in my everyday life. This book talks about circling your prayers with power and opening your eyes to see that He does hear our pleas. Once prayers are answered, use them to glorify His name. (my thought.) Use your blessings for the greater good of all. I've now taken my business into a covenant with Him, and already see His hands working with me. Here is the point of my contract with Him. I am not looking for the prize. I'm looking to make the change that the deal will force into my life. By making me change to follow His lead, I stop acting on my own selfishness and think not "what would Jesus do'" but "what does Jesus want me to do."


Sunday Oct 14 2012

 We went to church this morning. This was our second week at a new service called Twilight. It was a four week series about angels, ghosts, demons and spirits. We found the church via a mailer that we received. I guess God must have wanted us to go and check it out or we would not have found it in our mailbox. We showed up the first week and met many nice people. They were warm and welcoming, not over bearing which has turned us off before. The message was good. The pastor was great, and we left looking forward to attending again. This week the pastor talked about demons. I am sure "the devil himself" did not want us to hear this service. Just as the pastor started to talk, the women behind us start a nose sniffing marathon that lasted the whole service. When she wasn't sucking in her runny nose, she was coughing up her lungs.I think there were at least a dozen people coughing as well. It was such a distraction to hear what the pastor was saying. But we fought through it. Who knows if she was part of the plan to fill us with distraction. If it was, it did not work. We will be back again next week!