Monday, May 31, 2010


Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with
God all things are possible."
Matthew 19:26

Dwight L. Moody was a poorly educated, unordained, shoe salesman who
felt God's call to preach the gospel. Early one morning he and some
friends gathered in a hay field for a season of prayer, confession, and
consecration. His friend Henry Varley said, "The world has yet to see
what God can do with and for and through and in a man who is fully and
wholly consecrated to Him." Moody was deeply moved by these words. He
later went to a meeting where Charles Spurgeon was speaking. In that
meeting Moody recalled the words spoken by his friend, "The world had
yet to see!...with and for and through and in!...A man!" Varley meant
any man! Varley didn't say he had to be educated, or brilliant, or
anything else. Just a man! Well, by the Holy Spirit in him, he'd be one
of those men. Then suddenly, in that high gallery, he saw something he'd
never realized before. It was not Mr. Spurgeon, after all, who was doing
that work; it was God. And if God could use Mr. Spurgeon, why should He
not use the rest of us, and why should we not all just lay ourselves at
the Master's feet and say to Him, "Send me! Use me!"
D.L. Moody was an ordinary man who sought to be fully and wholly
committed to Christ. God did extraordinary things through this ordinary
man. Moody became one of the great evangelists of modern times. He
founded a Bible college, Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, which sends
out men and women trained in service for God.
Are you an ordinary man or woman in whom God wants to do extraordinary
things? God desires that for every child of His. Ask God to do
extraordinary things in your life. Begin today to trust Him to
accomplish great things for His Kingdom through you.

Friday, May 28, 2010


One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When He finished, one of
His disciples said to Him, "Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught
his disciples."
Luke 11:1

God is calling out a remnant of workplace believers throughout the
world who understand the role of prayer in their work. These people have
learned that prayer is not a five-minute exercise in the morning
devotion time, but it is a vital strategic tool to discern and know
God's will and purposes in their work lives. You see they have learned
that their business lives are their ministries to God and others.
These men and women have entered into covenant relationships with
intercessory prayer partners who help discern the activities they
should be involved in. Some even have paid staff, who intercede for the
decisions and activities in which they will be involved. They are a
small remnant of workplace believers who know that skill and technique
are not enough to fulfill God's purposes.
A servant of the Lord has well said: Prayer is the rail for God's work.
Indeed, prayer is to God's will as rails are to a train. The locomotive
is full of power: it is capable of running a thousand miles a day. But
if there are no rails, it cannot move forward a single inch. If it
dares to move without them, it will soon sink into the earth. It may be able
to travel over great distances, yet it cannot go to any place where no
rails have been laid. And such is the relation between prayer and God's
work. Without any doubt God is almighty and He works mightily, but He
will not and cannot work if you and I do not labor together with Him in
prayer, prepare the way for His will, and pray "with all prayer and
supplication" (Eph. 6:18) to grant Him the maneuverability to so work.
Many are the things, which God wills to do, and would like to do, but
His hands are bound because His children do not sympathize with Him and
have not prayed so as to prepare ways for Him. Let me say to all who
have wholly given themselves to God: Do examine yourselves and see if
in this respect you have limited Him day after day.
Is prayer a vital part of your strategic business practices? Put prayer
on the front lines, instead of making it an afterthought. You will
begin to see renewed power in your work life.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010


"A faithful man will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will
not go unpunished." - Proverbs 28:20

There is a distinct difference between the workplace believer who
operates based on living in the Promised Land versus the one who
operates in Egypt. In Egypt, the workplace believer sweats and toils
to generate an outcome. The final objective is foremost in their mind.
Outcome is everything.
In the Promised Land, we learn that obedience is the only thing that
matters. We are called to execute, and leave outcome to God. Sometimes
that outcome is very positive, yielding a return. In other cases, we may
not yield a corresponding return. We may even get a negative outcome.
The difference is that we know that we have been faithful to what God
has called us to and we yield results to God. God often blesses
obedience beyond what we deserve. If God brings wealth to your life, it
should come as a by-product of obedience, not an end in itself.
God may call each of us to be obedient to situations that may not yield
immediate, positive results. It is in these times that our faith must be
obedience-based versus outcome-based. What if Jesus had considered the
immediate ramifications of whether he would go to the cross? Based on
the immediate outcome, the decision would have been an easy one. Who
wants to die on a cross? However, for Him there was a higher purpose in
that obedience. We are called to this same kind of obedience. This means
putting our own flesh on the line daily, dying to our own self-will.
This is what it means to be a faithful man. Pray that God will make you
a faithful man today.

Monday, May 24, 2010


On June 12, 1944, just six days after D-Day in World War II, a young
lieutenant named Richard Winters led his men to the outskirts of
Carentan. As the officer in charge of Easy Company, of the 101st
Airborne, he was tasked to clear the large French town of its German
defenders. It would be a small battle, but it played a significant role
in the massive effort to rid the world of Adolf Hitler and the Nazis.
As Winters led his company up the road toward town, the company started
taking machine gun fire from a German MG42. The men instinctively dived
for cover into ditches on either side of the road, and stayed
there--they froze. Not only was the success of the mission in jeopardy,
but the men were easy targets for enemy machine gun and sniper fire.
What happened next proved to be the turning point in the battle for
Carentan -
it's the stuff legends are made of. Lt. Winters went into the middle of
the road and, with bullets hissing past him, started yelling at his
troops to get up out of the ditches and engage the enemy. His words,
coupled with his heroic action, motivated the men to get up, get in the
fight, and gain a decisive victory over the Germans.
Winters' disregard for personal safety in his effort to save his men
from certain death didn't just earn him a medal; his actions earned him
the love, respect, and admiration of his men. They followed him
faithfully from Carentan, through the nightmarish Battle of the Bulge,
and on to triumph at Hitler's Eagle's Nest.
Soldiers willingly follow men like that, men who demonstrate acts of
self-sacrifice in the most harrowing of circumstances. How much more
should we, as Christians, follow the One who endured suffering and
to rescue us from the most terrifying fate of all, an eternity in hell?
That was the idea that entered Paul's mind when, at the end of his own
ministry, having been imprisoned by the emperor Nero, he wrote to
encourage the young pastor Timothy. Timothy was facing severe conflict
in his ministry at Ephesus, and the relentless opposition from
apostates, and persecutors was weakening him. And just like any
Christian who experiences difficulty because of following Christ, he
needed to be reminded again of his task--to suffer hardship as a good
soldier of Jesus Christ.
Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 2:3-4, "Suffer hardship with me, as a good
soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier in active service entangles himself
in the affairs of everyday life, so that he may please the one who
enlisted him as a soldier." A good soldier is one who does not simply
minimum duty for his Lord, but rather is one who serves Him with
everything he is and has. As a Christian, that's what you are called
Paul's words to Timothy are your marching orders, too, as you strive to
be a good soldier of Christ Jesus.
The first mark of a good soldier is the willingness to suffer hardship
with the rest of the soldiers. "Suffer hardship" literally means to
suffer evil or pain along with someone else. By adding "with me," Paul
assures Timothy that he hasn't asked anything of him that he wasn't
willing to do. In fact, Paul was writing from a prison cell.
As a Christian in the Western world, I'd bet it is sometimes difficult
for you to understand what serious spiritual warfare and suffering for
Christ mean. Even though the secular environment in our society is
increasingly hostile to Christianity, you are not faced with loss of
job, imprisonment, or execution because of your faith. With few
exceptions, being a Christian won't keep you out of college or from
getting a good job. But the more faithful you are as a Christian, the
more Satan will put roadblocks, hardships, and rejection in the way,
the more evident the spiritual warfare will become, and the more frequent
and obvious the hardship will become.
You have been called to endure hardship, and every Christian who has
gone before you has had his share. And although you haven't yet shed
blood for your faith (Hebrews 12:4), you will experience hardship as a
Christian for your faithfulness--count on it. Jesus said, "If they
persecuted Me, they will also persecute you" (John 15:20). But be
encouraged for He also said, "In the world you have tribulation, but
take courage; I have overcome the world" (John 16:33). Jesus is the
perfect Commander who leads by example and will bring you to certain
victory in the end.
Secondly, a good soldier is marked by his separation from the "normal"
life. A "soldier in active service" does not have a 9 to 5 job, or even
a long 60- to 70-hour work week. He is a soldier 24 hours a day, every
day of the year. His body, his health, his skills, his time--all that
he is--belongs to the military. Even when on leave, he is subject to
recall at any time, without notice and for any reason. And whenever ordered
into dangerous duty, he is expected to put his very life on the line
without question or hesitation.
Consequently, he is separated from his normal environment, so that he
will not "entangle himself in the affairs of everyday life." Paul is
not speaking about things that necessarily are wrong in themselves. It is
not that you, as a Christian, should have no contact at all with your
former friends and surroundings, but that you should never be caught up
and enmeshed in them. Those things are irrelevant to your soldiering
and are always subject to being relinquished.
You should never allow earthly matters to interfere with the
fulfillment of your duty to the Lord. Temporal concerns and activities, innocent in
themselves, have neutralized the effectiveness of many pastors, special
ministries, and doctrinally sound churches. Though they once labored
faithfully in the primary purpose of serving Jesus Christ to advance
His kingdom against the forces of darkness, they have unwittingly taken
themselves out of the battle.
Just as the dutiful soldier places his life willingly on the line in
the service of his commander, so also will you, as a faithful Christian,
willingly deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Christ (Luke
9:23). And you will find yourself echoing Paul's words: "I do not
consider my life of any account as dear to myself, in order that I may
finish my course, and the ministry which I received from the Lord
Jesus" (Acts 20:24).
The final mark of a good soldier is a genuine desire to "please the one
who enlisted him as a soldier." The men who followed Lt. Winters
through terrible conditions and battles in Europe did so willingly--he had
earned their respect and affections. In an even greater way, the Lord
deserves your honor, your affection, and your obedience for all He has
done for you. His own courage on the battlefield is unparalleled. He
stayed the course and went before you to win your freedom and eternal
life. And now He seeks your loyal service in His army.
The Christian's greatest desire is to please Christ, and his fondest
hope is to be rewarded for faithful service, to hear his Master say,
"Well done, good and faithful slave; you were faithful with a few
things, I will put you in charge of many things, enter into the joy of
your master" (Matthew 25:21).
With that hope in the forefront of your mind, let your life be animated
and driven forward by your love for Jesus Christ. And make it your
ambition, "whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him" (2
Corinthians 5:9)--He is your spiritual Commander-in-Chief.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


"For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that
whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life".
John 3:16

"I'd like you to help us develop our marketing program beginning in
January," said the CEO of a sports product company. The consultant was
delighted to have the opportunity. It was the first new business
opportunity he'd had in some time. He had just come out of some very
difficult business and personal circumstances in the last few years. A
few months into the relationship, the CEO asked the consultant to manage
the entire marketing department, placing him over the current marketing
staff. It appeared that God was blessing his efforts with several
successful initiatives. The consultant began to build a relationship
with a few of the executives. One day, the sales manager came into his
office and asked for help on a personal crisis. One thing led to
another, and two months later, the consultant found himself leading the
sales manager in the sinner's prayer in the sales manager's office.
God prepares His servants in many ways to accomplish His purpose. The
story of Joseph is repeated every workday in the lives of His people.
The circumstances may be different, but the results are the same. God
trains His servant through sometimes difficult "boot camps." When that
training is complete, He places them in strategic places to be a
provider-both physically and spiritually.
Is God preparing you to be a provider in the workplace? Do not fret at
the difficult training ground you may be required to endure. He has a
plan. If you'll allow Him to carry out His plan, you'll be privileged to
be used by the Master's hand. I know because I am that consultant.

Monday, May 17, 2010


Isn't it true? We pursue countless things without pursuing the one thing
that matters most-time with God.
I was raised to believe in the importance of a "quiet time." To the
surprise of some, that concept did not originate with the late Dawson
Trotman, founder of The Navigators. It began with the Lord Himself.
The Scriptures are replete with references to the value of waiting for
the Lord and spending time with Him. When we do, the debris we have
gathered during the hurried, sometimes frantic hours of our day gets
filtered out, like the silt that settles where a river widens. With the
debris out of the way, we are able to see things more clearly and feel
God's nudgings more sensitively.
David frequently underscored the benefits of solitude. Most likely he
became acquainted with this discipline as he kept his father's sheep.
Later, during those tumultuous years when King Saul was borderline
insane and pursuing him out of jealousy, David found his time with God
not only a needed refuge, but also his primary means of survival.
When he wrote, "Wait for the Lord; / Be strong, and let your heart take
courage; / Yes, wait for the Lord" (Psalm 27:14), David was intimately
acquainted with what that meant. When he admitted, "I waited patiently
for the Lord; / And He inclined to me and heard my cry" (40:1), it was
not out of a context of unrealistic theory. The man was hurting; he was
in great pain. And when he wrote: "Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have
walked in my integrity, / And I have trusted in the Lord without
wavering. / Examine me, O Lord, and try me; / Test my mind and my heart"
(26:1-2), he wasn't whipping up a few pious thoughts to impress the
reader. Those words splashed from the depths of his troubled soul, like
the salty spray that explodes when waves crash against rocks.
Time with God? Who experienced its value more than Job after losing it
all? In worship he wrote:
"Naked I came from my mother's womb,
And naked I shall return there.
The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord." (Job 1:21)
His quiet trust didn't wear thin; the man continued to commune with his
God. Remember his confession? What makes it even more remarkable is that
he stated it while surrounded by those who accused him:
"But He knows the way I take;
When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold.
My foot has held fast to His path;
I have kept His way and not turned aside.
I have not departed from the command of His lips;
I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my
necessary food." (Job 23:10-12)
That's it! That is exactly what occurs when we remove ourselves from the
fast track and keep our appointment with the One who seeks our worship.
His words become more satisfying than a good meal. What great thoughts
He has preserved for us-what insights, what comfort, what reassurance!
The best part of all is that such divine breakthroughs come so
unexpectedly. Though you and I may have met with God in solitude morning
after morning, suddenly there comes that one day, like none other, when
He reveals His plan . . . and we're blown away.
Who would ever have guessed that an otherwise ordinary dawn would find
an 80-year-old, over-the-hill shepherd staring straight into a bush
ablaze but not consumed? F. B. Meyer wrote with eloquence about it in
Moses: The Servant of God:
There are days in all lives which come unannounced, unheralded; no angel
faces look out of heaven; no angel voices put us on our guard: but as we
look back on them in after years, we realize that they were the turning
points of existence. Perhaps we look longingly back on the uneventful
routine of the life that lies beyond them; but the angel, with drawn
sword, forbids our return, and compels us forward. It was so with Moses.
Understand that those phenomenal moments are the exception-not the rule.
If God spoke to us like that everyday, burning bushes would be as
commonplace as traffic lights and ringing phones. The fact is that never
again in all of time has the voice of God been heard from a bush that
refused to be consumed with flames. You see, God is into original works,
not duplicated recordings.
But never doubt it: He still longs to speak to pursuing hearts . . .
hearts that are quiet before Him. Let's start there.

Friday, May 14, 2010


And the Lord said, "Who will entice Ahab into attacking Ramoth Gilead
and going to his death there?" One suggested this, and another that.
1 Kings 22:20

There are few times we get a glimpse of what goes on in Heaven. Here is
one instance when the angels were conferring with the Lord about the
judgment of King Ahab for his sin and who was going to set up Ahab for
this judgment.
If God wanted to use you to impact your world for Jesus Christ, what
circumstances would have to be created in order for you to respond to
His call? Would prospering you materially encourage you to this end?
Would a major change in what you are presently doing be necessary? What
would your response be should God and the angels conclude that the only
way to move you into a position of fulfilling God's purposes was to
remove some things that might be very dear to you? Would you agree with
their plan if you knew this would be the only way you would achieve the
purposes for which God made you? Hard questions, aren't they?
This is the very thing God does in many who have been called for a
special mission. Moses had to be stripped of his royal position in the
family of Egypt and sit in the desert for 40 years. The apostle Paul had
to be knocked off his horse, blinded, and receive a personal visitation
from Jesus. The 12 disciples had to leave their jobs for three years to
follow Christ. Imagine what kind of disruption this had on their lives.
There are many examples of God bringing major upheaval in the lives of
those He called for His purposes. Why?
The reason is that we do not seek God with a whole heart in times of
prosperity and comfort. Prosperity and comfort tend to breed complacency
and satisfaction. It is rare to find the man or woman who seeks God with
a whole heart who does so simply from a grateful heart. We often must
have pain or crisis to motivate us. Eventually, that crisis bridges us
to a new calling, and we embrace that calling if we are open to the Holy
Spirit's work in us. We can actually thank God for the change that was
required to get us to this place, but it is not without anguish of
Would you be willing to sit in the strategic planning session for your
life and agree with the plans God has for your life? Could you give God
complete freedom to implement that plan, no matter the cost? Ask God to
give you the grace and trust in His love for you to say "yes."

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


Now the donkeys belonging to Saul's father Kish were lost, and Kish said
to his son Saul, "Take one of the servants with you and go and look for
the donkeys."
1 Samuel 9:3

The people of Israel wanted a king. God finally agreed. Samuel was the
prophet of Israel who was to anoint the man God had chosen. God selected
a young man to be the first king of Israel-his name was Saul.
It is interesting to look at the circumstances in which God called Saul
into his new vocation. It seems that Saul's father had a business that
used donkeys. During these times, donkeys were often used for commerce.
It was obviously important to the father to find these lost donkeys, so
he sent Saul and his servant out to find them.
They went from region to region, unable to find the donkeys. Finally,
Saul told his servant that they should go back. He thought that his
father would be worried.
But the servant replied, "Look, in this town there is a man of God; he
is highly respected, and everything he says comes true. Let's go there
now. Perhaps he will tell us what way to take" (1 Samuel 9:6).
Saul took his advice. Near the town they met some young girls who told
them that Samuel had just come to their town that day.
When they arrived, they met Samuel who told them that the donkeys were
safe and he would also tell Saul the next morning all that was in his
heart. He then informed Saul of his new calling to be the next king of
Can you see what circumstances led to Saul's receiving his call? It
started with a business problem - lost donkeys. It led to connecting
Saul with Samuel through a number of divine appointments and
circumstances. God still does this today.
God will provide the necessary circumstances to accomplish His purposes
in your life. You must realize that a business problem may lead to a new
calling for your life. Saul had no idea lost donkeys would be the
instrument used to change his life. So, too, we must realize God's ways
are not our ways.

Friday, May 7, 2010


"And Joshua said, 'Ah, Sovereign Lord, why did You ever bring this people across the Jordan to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us? If only we had been content to stay on the other side of the Jordan!'" - Joshua 7:7

Have you ever felt like you were doing what God wanted you to do, but your plans were totally frustrated? This was how Joshua felt.

The Lord had been with the people of Israel as they entered the Promised Land. They defeated every enemy because of God's blessing and protection. They had just taken the city of Jericho. The next battle was the city of Ai. They scouted the enemy and determined it would require only 3,000 men to defeat them. They attacked, and soon the reports came back that they were being routed. Joshua could not understand this. He cried out to God asking why this was happening.

The Lord said to Joshua, "Stand up! What are you doing down on your face? Israel has sinned; they have violated My covenant, which I commanded them to keep. They have taken some of the devoted things; they have stolen, they have lied, they have put them with their own possessions. That is why the Israelites cannot stand against their enemies; they turn their backs and run because they have been made liable to destruction. I will not be with you anymore unless you destroy whatever among you is devoted to destruction" (Joshua 7:10-12).

Whenever we open ourselves up to sin, we become liable. God removes His protective shield from our lives in order for the sin in our lives to be purged out. He often uses the enemy of our souls to accomplish the task. If you feel you are being thwarted in some way, examine your life to see if there is any sin that is the cause of the problem. Adversity is not always due to sin, but it can be. Ask Him. He will show you. As with Joshua, God immediately answered this prayer when Joshua asked. He desires for His children to live in a right relationship with Him.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


"But I will punish the nation they serve as slaves, and afterward they will come out with great possessions." - Genesis 15:14

Whenever God brings you through a time of great adversity, you can expect to come out of that experience with great possessions, if you have been faithful through the trial. This is a universal truth. Wisdom comes from obedience, not knowledge. When we have been tested and proven, the reality of our faith results in possessions from God that we would never receive if we had not gone through those trials. These are precious in His sight and should be valued greatly. Those who know you will be amazed at the wisdom that comes from your mouth. It is one of those mysteries of the gospel that only those who experience incredible testing and hardship can explain.

God kept the people of Israel enslaved 400 years, but when the time came to free them from the bondage of slavery, they came out with great possessions. These physical possessions symbolize the spiritual possessions we receive when we come out of being enslaved to those things that have hindered us all our lives. These possessions are to be shared with others so that they also can know how they might become free.

What has God freed you from that allows you to share your possessions with others? Share what God has done in your life with someone you work with today. It may be the possession they need most in their life.

Monday, May 3, 2010


"Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit?" (1 Cor 12:7-9).

Whenever something unusual happens in daily life, these are often signs that God is up to something. We must have a heightened sense of awareness of what God may want to do in these situations. My mentor once shared how he was upgraded on an airline unexpectedly. A woman sat down next to him who was very troubled. He began to quietly pray for the woman and God gave him supernatural insights that her problem related to the fact that she had not forgiven her mother in a family-related issue. He decided to politely share his insight. The woman was shocked. My mentor began to minister to her on the airplane and ultimately led her to Christ.

God is raising the spiritual bar for Christians who want to impact the world for Christ today. He wants to break through into people's lives supernaturally by giving them insights into the needs of people in order to bring them to Christ.

Jesus often spoke supernaturally into the lives of others based on the circumstance of the moment. He often spoke of their current condition in life and invited them to make a change.

As you go about your day, there are situations that we can find ourselves in that are open doors for bringing Christ into the circumstance. In fact, He is the one orchestrating the circumstance!

Next time an unusual situation develops, be aware that God may be creating such a circumstance to bring His glory into the situation.