Thursday, March 22, 2018


"Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle." - Psalm 144:1

David was a man skilled in war. From his days as a shepherd boy to the days of serving in Saul's army to leading his own army, David learned to be a skillful warrior. How does one become a skillful warrior?
The only way one can become a skillful warrior is to be trained and placed in the middle of the battle. It is only when we are placed in the furnace of battle that we truly learn to fight the real battles. Practice doesn't make you battle ready. War games won't prepare you for facing your real enemy in the battlefield. The stark reality of being in the midst of the battle makes us effective warriors.
Simply reading your Bible will not make you a warrior for the Kingdom. Knowledge without experience is mere folly. Only when you are placed in situations where there is nothing or no one who can save you but God will you learn the lessons of warrior faith. This is the training ground of God, which will make you into a soldier for Christ in the workplace. Consider it to be suicidal faith - faith that says I want to be dead to anything that keeps me from fulfilling God's purposes for my life. It is when your efforts can do nothing to change your circumstance and you are at the mercy of God. These are the real training grounds of God. Do not shrink back from the battle that God may be leading you to today. It may be a training ground that is necessary for the calling He has on your life.
If you can trust Him in these times, you'll know that you have gained a faith that will move mountains and will sustain you in the most difficult of circumstances. "Praise be to the Lord my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle."

Monday, March 19, 2018


"O LORD, by your hand save me from such men, from men of this world whose reward is in this life" (Ps 17:14).

There are two types of people in the world. There are those whose activities are designed to generate a reward in this lifetime. And there are those who live to generate a reward when they meet our Lord in Heaven.
Not every Christian models the latter. How does one judge whether they are living for the future reward versus the earthly reward? There are several key indicators.
Future reward people tend to be givers. They make their time and resources available to be channeled for Kingdom purposes. They realize their sowing will ultimately be rewarded at the Judgment Seat of Christ where what they have done on earth will be judged and rewarded by God (2 Corinthians 5:10).
Future reward people live a life based upon obedience-based decisions. They don't make decisions based on their perceived outcome. They realize a decision based on obedience alone may not result in an immediate outcome. Jesus was obedient to the cross, but the immediate outcome was His own death on the cross.
Future reward situations show up in daily life in a number of ways. Perhaps a person has wronged you and God calls you to forgive and even bless that person without expectation of their response. Perhaps God calls you to sow money into a ministry or another person's life without expectation of return from them. Perhaps you are called to serve another person without expectation of any earthly reward. The situations we might encounter are unlimited.
Are you living a life based on a future reward, or short term reward? Today, evaluate how you make decisions and how you allocate resources. This will reveal whether you are a future reward Christian.

Friday, March 16, 2018


"David was conscience-stricken after he had counted the fighting men, and he said to the Lord, 'I have sinned greatly in what I have done. Now, O Lord, I beg You, take away the guilt of Your servant. I have done a very foolish thing.'" - 2 Samuel 24:10

It just seems to be human nature. As we grow in wealth and ability, our confidence moves from complete trust in the Lord to trust in our resources. King David decided one day that he needed to know how many fighting men he had in his army. This was a grievous sin in the nation of Israel. God always made it clear to the nation that He, not their army, was their source. It was against the law of God to number the troops. David's general, Joab, knew the serious nature of such an action.
But Joab replied to the king, "May the Lord your God multiply the troops a hundred times over, and may the eyes of my lord the king see it. But why does my lord the king want to do such a thing?" (2 Samuel 24:3)
Joab knew that David was treading in dangerous waters when he brought up the idea to him. But David had it in his mind that this is what he was going to do. And he did. The result: God judged David for this sin by smiting the nation with a plague that resulted in the loss of 70,000 lives.
Recently, I was having lunch with a former stockbroker who lost everything in the 1987 stock crash in the United States. He made an interesting comment. "You cannot know how to fully trust the Lord in the financial area until you really have to. When I lost everything, I was forced to trust Him when I knew I could not pay my next bill unless God provided. This was the time I learned to trust God. I never had to trust God before I lost my money because I had plenty. We don't willingly enter this level of trust with God."
Ask God today to keep you from trusting in your own resources. Ask Him how to balance trust and blessing from Him this day.

Thursday, March 15, 2018


"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain." - Psalm 127:1a

What does it mean for the Lord to build the house? It almost seems a contradiction when we consider that we might be the builders in this passage. God wants us to allow Him to build the house. He explains further:
"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat - for He grants sleep to those He loves" (Psalm 127:1-2).
God is telling us there is a way of working without striving. There is a way to conduct business without sweating and toiling for outcome. His warning to each of us is to avoid thinking that outcome is based on our sweat and toil. Outcome is based on obedience. That outcome is sometimes more than we deserve. Sometimes it is less than we hoped for. His desire for each of us is to see Him working in our daily work life. He wants us to avoid looking to our own effort to gain an outcome.
One day Jesus called out to Peter from the shore of the lake and suggested he throw his net on the other side of the boat. It was this simple act of obedience that yielded a tremendous catch that he would not have received unless he obeyed.
We are called to work; He is called to bring forth the fruit. He is the vine. We are the branches. Fruit comes forth naturally from a healthy tree.
Today, ask God to show you when you enter into striving. Ask Him to show you the difference between loving trust and obedience and striving for outcome. It can be challenging for us to balance this in our daily work experience. He wants to help us walk in this freedom and rest.

Monday, March 12, 2018


"I can do everything through Him who gives me strength." - Philippians 4:13

In the thirteenth century a man named William Wallace became the instrument of freedom from England's tyranny over Scotland. A very wicked king ruled England. A tragedy in the life of William Wallace launched him into living for this cause. Initially his cause was revenge, but soon his cause turned to something bigger than himself - freedom for a nation. When he challenged the commoners to fight for this freedom, they responded that the enemy was too great and that they might die on the battlefield. They also refused to fight for the nobles, the knights and leaders who had a vested interest in gaining more land for themselves versus a pure cause of freedom. Wallace's response: "Yes, we might die. We will all die sooner or later. But we will die for a cause worth dying for. So that our children and their children might live in freedom." This story was popularized in the movie Brave Heart (Sherman Oaks, California: Paramount Pictures, 1995).
Today we find many Christian workplace believers living a status quo relationship with God that is more characterized as "business as usual" than a life demonstrating God's power. Our focus is often more concerned with improving our standard of living than improving the Kingdom of God through our circle of influence. While this takes place, millions upon millions die without the saving grace of Christ. Many other Christians die never experiencing the freedom in Christ that His blood paid for. God has called each of us to live for a cause greater than ourselves - a life that is dependent on His grace and power to achieve things we never thought possible through our lives. This is His plan for your life. The apostle Paul prayed that He might experience the power of the resurrection in his life. This power is available to you and me to live for a cause greater than ourselves. Ask God what He wants to achieve through your life today. And consider yourself dead already to the consequences of what that might mean for you.

Saturday, March 10, 2018


"If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer." - 2 Corinthians 1:6

"God must love you a lot! He doesn't allow someone to go through the kinds of adversity you have experienced unless He has a special calling on your life." Those were the words said to me by two different mentors at two different times within a three-year period. Later I would learn another related truth from a respected man of God - a man who lives in another country, a man whom God uses throughout the globe. "The depth and width of your faith experiences are directly proportional to your calling." What were these men of God saying?
They were describing a process of preparation that God takes each of His leaders through when He plans to use them in significant ways. A "faith experience" is an event or "spiritual marker" in your life about which you can say, "That is where I saw God personally moving in my life." It is an unmistakable event in which God showed Himself personally to you. It was the burning bush for Moses; the crossing of the Red Sea or the Jordan River for the nation of Israel; Jacob's encounter with the angel. It was the feeding of the 5,000 for the disciples. It was the time when you saw God face to face in your life.
If God has plans of using you in the lives of many others, you can expect that He is going to allow certain faith experiences to come into your life in order to build a foundation that will be solid. That foundation is what you will be able to look back on to keep you faithful to Him in the times of testing. Each of us must have personal faith experiences in which we experience God personally so that we can move in faith to whatever He may call us. Do you need a personal faith experience right now in your life? Pray that God will reveal Himself to you. He delights in doing that.

Thursday, March 8, 2018


"All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his lips. 'Isn't this Joseph's son?' they asked" (Luke 4:22).

Jesus was more qualified to be a carpenter than the Son of God in the view of religious leaders and the common people of his day. He was also becoming known as a rabbi who thought and did things "outside the box." He was an unusual mixture of the earthly common man who did daily work just like his other villagers in Nazareth. So, when the public ministry side of his life began to surface, the first observations were, "Isn't this Joseph, the carpenter's son?"
This is not unlike what happens when God calls you or I into a more public ministry. "Isn't that John, the CPA, or Bill the restaurant manager, or Susie the bank executive?" The first question among our critics is "Where did John, Bill, or Susie get religion?"
The religious spirit in the workplace reveals itself in many ways. The religious spirit can best be defined as an agent of Satan assigned to prevent change and maintain the status quo by using religious devices. The religious spirit seeks to distort a genuine move of God through deception, control and manipulation. It was the primary force against Jesus designed to intimidate and turn His relationship with God into a set of rules and regulations. Satan does not want Jesus in the workplace because that is where the authority lies to change a workplace, city or nation. God desires you to bring His presence with you into the workplace every day. Do not let the enemy of your soul shame you into alienating your faith from your work.
Today, ask Jesus to go into the workplace with you. The two of you just might be the team to bring someone out of slavery and bondage.