Monday, November 29, 2010


"And after the whole nation had been circumcised, they remained where
they were in camp until they were healed." - Joshua 5:8

Before the nation of Israel could go into the Promised Land they had to
be circumcised. Circumcision is painful, bloody, and personal. God
requires each of us to be circumcised in heart before we are allowed to
enter and receive the blessings that await each believer in the
This circumcision can often be very painful. Circumcision requires
losing our old way of life. The process of spiritual circumcision may
mean a loss in areas that have been a part of our lives in order to
us to the Savior. God understands this. Consequently, like the people
Israel, we must wait until we are healed before we begin to be
in our calling. If we launch out too early, we will be ineffective and
may risk infection and disease and will not be at our full capacity.
wants each of us to walk in His healing grace.
The people of Israel fought only two battles when they were coming out
of Egypt. In the Promised Land they fought 39 battles. Each of us must
be prepared to enjoy the benefits of living in the Promised Land.
However, we must also be prepared to wage war against the enemy of our
souls. Make sure the Lord has provided the needed healing to your
circumcision experience before you enter the Promised Land.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


"' I will not let you go unless you bless me." (Gen v.26)

-- For reading & meditation: Genesis 32:22-31

We look now at the second characteristic of "revival praying" -
tenacity and persistence. Read the record of revivals and you will
find that this quality is also present. In the days prior to revival
people not only pray zealously but they pray persistently. For over a
period of thirteen years Evan Roberts prayed for revival to come to
Wales. "There was never a day," he says, "when I didn't fling myself
before God and cry out for Him to send the Holy Spirit to my native
land." Dafydd Owen also prayed every day for over ten years for a
great outpouring to come to the Principality. And concerning David
Morgan it was recorded "that for ten years before 1858 a petition for
the outpouring of the Holy Spirit was never absent from his prayers".
We must recognise that often this persistence was not something that
was natural but was given by the Holy Spirit. It was said of Evan
Roberts that when he was a boy, "he hardly ever saw anything through
and would give up a task most easily". Listen to what Jonathan
Edwards, another great revivalist, had to say about the importance of
persistence and perseverance: "It is very apparent from the Word of
God that the Lord is wont often to try the faith and patience of His
people, when crying to Him for some great and important mercy, by
withholding the mercy sought for a season; and not only so but at
first to cause an increase of dark appearances. And yet He, without
fail, at last succeeds those who continue instant in prayer with all
perseverance and will 'not let Him go except He blesses'."
O Father, search my heart today and see if there is any hidden thing
in me that holds me back from persistent and perservering prayer.
Bring it to the light so that I can deal with it. I ask this in
Jesus' Name. Amen.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


..."Peace be with you!" - John 20:19

How would you respond to a group of fellow workers if you were their
leader and you poured your life into them, teaching them all you know
for three years, only to have them disband and go their own way when
troubles came? What would you say to them after you were reunited for
the first time? Perhaps you might scold them. Perhaps you might cite
each one's offense. At the least, you might shame them for their lack of
faithfulness and courage.
After Jesus was crucified and raised from the dead, He appeared to the
disciples. His first words to them were, "Peace be with you!" The word
grace means "unmerited favor." When someone loves you unconditionally,
without regard to your behavior in return, it becomes a powerful force
in your life. Such was the case for the disciples when Jesus appeared to
them. They could have expected reprimand. Instead, they received
unconditional love and acceptance. He was overjoyed to see them. They
were equally overjoyed to see Him.
Jesus understood that the disciples needed to fail Him as part of their
training. It would be this failure that became their greatest motivation
for service. Failure allowed them to experience incredible grace for the
very first time. Grace would transform them as human beings.
Have you experienced this grace in your life? Have you extended grace to
those who have hurt you? Can you let go of any wrongs that have come
through friends or associates? The grace you extend may change their
lives—and yours.

Monday, November 22, 2010


"Because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God." - Romans 8:14

The greatest sign that you and I are maturing in our walk with God is
when we can discern the difference between "good things" and
"God-things." When the people of Israel journeyed out of Egypt through
the desert, the cloud led them by day. They could move only as fast as
the cloud. If they went ahead, they went without God's presence. If they
lagged behind, they also lost God's presence.
Each of us must have the discernment to know when God is leading in a
matter, or if it is simply a good idea. There are so many things in
which you and I can be involved, and the more successful you become, the
greater the temptations to enter into things where God has not called
you. Entrepreneurs are especially prone to see all the opportunities.
I recall one time when I entered into a project that I thought was a
great idea. It would help many people. After two years, the project had
to be discontinued. It was a great lesson on understanding what projects
have God's blessing on them. There are some projects you and I might get
involved in that result in little fruit compared to the investment put
into them. That is because they may never have been birthed by the Holy
As sons of God, we are called to be led by the Spirit. This requires a
level of dependence on God in which many of us really do not want to
invest. It requires listening, waiting, and moving only when God's
Spirit tells us to move. Workplace believers are "action" people. We
know how to get things done, but our greatest strength can be our
greatest weakness.
Today, ask God to make you a Romans 8:14 man or woman who is led by the
Spirit of God. Pray against lagging behind or moving ahead. Ask God to
reveal whether the next project you consider is a "good thing" or a

Friday, November 19, 2010


"He went out to meet Asa and said to him, "Listen to me, Asa and all
Judah and Benjamin. The Lord is with you when you are with Him. If you
seek Him, He will be found by you, but if you forsake Him, He will
forsake you." - 2 Chronicles 15:2

Asa was the king of Judah from 912-872 B.C. He reigned for 41 years and
was known as a good king who served the Lord with great zeal. He
reformed many things. He broke down idol worship to foreign gods; he
away male prostitutes and even removed his own mother from being queen
because she worshiped an idol. The Scriptures say that as long as he
sought the Lord, the Lord prospered his reign.
However, Asa was not totally faithful in his calling. There came a time
in his life when he made a decision to no longer trust in the God of
Israel. He lost his confidence in God as his deliverer. The prophet
Hanani came to Asa to inform him that God's blessing was no longer on
his life because of an ungodly alliance he had made.
Were not the Cushites and Libyans a mighty army with great numbers of
chariots and horsemen? Yet when you relied on the Lord, He delivered
them into your hand. For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the
to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him. You have
done a foolish thing, and from now on you will be at war (2 Chronicles
There are no guarantees that if we began well we will finish well. The
life of Asa tells us this. It is only through God's grace that we can
faithful to our calling. Each of us is capable of falling away from
Pray that God will keep you faithful to the purposes He has for your
life. He strengthens those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


"But the whole assembly talked about stoning them." - (Numbers 14:10)

Have you ever had to stand up against the majority for a cause
that wasn't popular? God brought the Israelites out of Egypt and
promised He would lead them into a land of milk and honey. The
process of moving out of Egypt was difficult. They could no
longer do things the old way, for the old ways didn't work in the
desert. God provided for them during this journey. But there came
a point in which the people forgot what God had said. Their
discomfort changed their belief about God.
Whenever God is slow to answer our prayers, what we believe about
God is revealed. Do we change our plans and move in a different
direction when pressure mounts? Or do we continue on the path God
has directed for us? Four men believed what God said and were
willing to stand; however, the crowd wanted to stone them.
Then Moses and Aaron fell facedown in front of the whole
Israelite assembly gathered there. Joshua son of Nun and Caleb
son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land,
tore their clothes and said to the entire Israelite assembly,
"The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. If
the Lord is pleased with us, He will lead us into that land, a
land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do
not rebel against the Lord. And do not be afraid of the people of
the land, because we will swallow them up. Their protection is
gone, but the Lord is with us. Do not be afraid of them." But the
whole assembly talked about stoning them. Then the glory of the
Lord appeared at the Tent of Meeting to all the Israelites
(Numbers 14:5-10).
Notice Joshua and Caleb's response to the situation. They had
spied the land. They believed God. They challenged the crowd.
They seemed to know that if the Lord was not pleased with them
they would not enter into the Promised Land. Those who grumbled
did not enter the Promised Land. Only Joshua and Caleb and a new
generation saw the fulfillment of God's promise.
Has God called you to stand for a cause bigger than yourself? You
will have opposition to His call; sometimes it even comes from
those in your own camp. But if God has called you, then you can
be sure He will make a way. He has already opened the way before
you. But you must walk in faith, joined with Him to take the
...Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be
discouraged, ffor the Lord your God will be with you wherever you
go (Joshua 1:9).

Monday, November 15, 2010


..."Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit," says the Lord
Almighty." - Zechariah 4:6

God's people should be the most positive, joyful people on earth. This
joy should be a by-product of a healthy, intimate relationship with
Jesus. In today's business climate, we are barraged with every possible
means of becoming more productive workplace believers. Positive thinking
and self-help philosophy are promoted as tools for workplace believers
to fulfill their potential and overcome the mountains in their lives.
God calls each of us to be visionary leaders, but we must be careful
that vision is born out of His Spirit, not the latest self-help program.
These ideas lead us away from dependence on God to a self-based
psychology designed to give us more power, prosperity, and significance.
The result is heresy. Our faith in God becomes faith in faith. It is
born out of hard work and diligence rather than obedience to God's
Spirit. The problem lies in that these philosophies sound good, and can
even be supported by Bible verses. Beware of anything that puts the
burden of performance on you rather than God. There are times in our
lives when God doesn't want us to climb every mountain. Sometimes He
wants us to go around. Knowing the difference is the key to being a man
or woman led by the Spirit.
God has called us to affect the workplace through His Spirit, not by our
might. Have you tapped into the real power source of the soul? Ask the
Lord to reveal and empower you through His Spirit today. Then you will
know what real positive thinking is.

Friday, November 12, 2010


"..."What have I done? What is my crime? How have I wronged your father,
that he is trying to take my life?" - 1 Samuel 20:1

The cost of being one of God's anointed can be great. Those whom God has
anointed for service and influence in His Kingdom go through a special
preparation. David was anointed to be the next king over Israel. Shortly
after this, while still a young boy, he was brought into King Saul's
service to play music in Saul's court. While there, the opportunity to
stand up against Goliath elevated David for his next stage of
development as future king. As his popularity grew so did Saul's
jealousy. However, even Saul's jealousy was God's instrument for molding
and shaping David.
Saul finally decided he could no longer tolerate David's success and
popularity among the people, so he tried to kill David. The confused
young shepherd boy spent many years hiding in wilderness caves before he
was able to see the hand of God in all of this. No doubt David thought
that when Samuel anointed him he would be conveniently raised up to be
king with all the accompanying benefits of kingship. Not so. God's
preparation of David involved much persecution, disloyalty, and
hardship. These were the lessons necessary to be a godly king. God
brought many tests in David's life, just as He did with Saul. David
passed these tests. Saul did not.
When God anoints us, it often is accompanied by some severe tests. These
tests are designed to prepare us for the calling God has on our life.
Should we fail these tests God cannot elevate us to the next level. For
a workplace believer, these tests often involve money, relationships,
and other issues of the heart.
What if God has chosen you for a specific purpose in His Kingdom? Are
you passing the tests He is bringing about in your life? These tests are
designed to bring about greater obedience. In most instances, it will
involve great adversity. The Bible tells us that the King of kings
learned obedience through the things that He suffered (see Heb. 5:8). If
this is true, why would it be any different for His children? Be aware
of the tests God may be bringing before you in order to prepare you for
His service.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


"Yet when He heard that Lazarus was sick, He stayed where He was two more
days." - John 11:6

Delays in our life are not always easy to handle or to reconcile in our
minds. Often, when God does not answer our prayers in the time that we
feel He should, we appoint all sorts of characteristics to God's nature
that imply He does not care. Such was the case with Lazarus' sisters
when Lazarus became ill and died. Jesus was a close friend to Lazarus
and his two sisters, Mary and Martha. (Mary, you may recall, was the
woman who came and poured perfume on Jesus' feet.) When Jesus arrived
two days later, Martha shamed Him by saying, "If You had come he would
not have died." She implied that He didn't care enough to come when sent
for. It was a matter of priorities for Jesus, not lack of love.
God often has to delay His work in us in order to accomplish something
for His purposes that can be achieved only in the delay. Jesus had to
let Lazarus die in order for the miracle that was about to take place to
have its full effect. If Jesus had simply healed a sick man, the impact
of the miracle would not have been as newsworthy as resurrecting a man
who had been dead for four days. This is Jesus' greatest "public
relations act" of His whole ministry. What many do not realize is that
the key to the whole story is in the next chapter.
Many people, because they had heard that He had given this miraculous
sign, went out to meet Him. So the Pharisees said to one another, "See,
this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after
Him!" (John 12:18-19)
If Jesus had not raised Lazarus from the dead, there would have been no
crowds to cheer the Lord when He came into Jerusalem riding on a donkey.
God often sets the stage so that His glory is revealed through the
events that He orchestrates. He did this with Moses and Pharaoh,
allowing delay after delay for release of the Israelites from Egypt. He
did this with Abraham and Sarah for the promised child, Isaac. God
granted Sarah a baby past the age of childbearing in order to
demonstrate His power.
God did this in my own life. He delayed the fulfillment of what I
believed He called me to do for several years. But the delays provided
the necessary preparation and greater glory that God was to receive. My
friend, don't take the delays lightly. Do not faint as God places you in
what seems to be a holding pattern. God is at work. God knows the
purposes for His delays. Don't give up, for they are for His greater
glory; so we need to remain faithful.

Monday, November 8, 2010


"So Gideon took the men down to the water. There the Lord told him,
"Separate those who lap the water with their tongues like a dog from
those who kneel down to drink." - Judges 7:5

Would you ever take on an army of 100,000 with only 300 men? Sound
preposterous? I agree. However, this is exactly what happened with
Gideon. It was bad enough that he began with 10,000 against 100,000, but
this was too many men according to God. He would not allow Gideon to
fight with this many soldiers, because the temptation would still remain
to believe that it was the strength of his army that won the victory.
God told Gideon to pare down his army to a mere 300. This would ensure
that God would receive total credit for the victory. This is a law in
the Kingdom of God. All glory must go to Him. "Announce now to the
people, 'Anyone who trembles with fear may turn back and leave Mount
Gilead.' So twenty-two thousand men left, while ten thousand remained"
(Judg. 7:3).
Now there are 10,000 men left but that was still too many. God gave
Gideon an interesting selection method for the 300 as he took the men
down to the water. There the Lord told him, "Separate those who lap the
water with their tongues like a dog from those who kneel down to drink"
(Judg. 7:5b). What was the significance of this? Those soldiers who
lapped water like a dog were soldiers who were more aware of the enemy
around them compared to those who kneeled to drink. The lappers were men
who were on constant guard to the danger around them, keeping their eyes
up and looking about them. The others could be easily picked off.
If you and I are going to be one of God's elite, we must be battle
ready. We must be sensitive to the spiritual dangers around us. We must
be trained to go about our business while, at the same time, discern
when the enemy of our souls is prowling about seeking to destroy us. "Be
self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a
roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Pet. 5:8). Beware of the
spiritual dangers around you.

Friday, November 5, 2010


"Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose
that prevails." - (Proverbs 19:21)

Have you ever heard of someone who spent years of preparation for
one vocation only to end up doing something completely different?
Perhaps this could be said of you. Quite often we have in our
minds what we believe we want to do only to have a course
correction. Often the course correction comes through a major
crisis that forces us into an area that we would never have
Such was the case for Samuel Morse. Born in 1791, Morse grew up
desiring to be an artist, and he eventually became very talented
and internationally known. However, it was difficult to make a
living as an artist in America during that time. A series of
crises further complicated his vocational desire when his wife
died; then his mother and father also died soon after. He went to
Europe to paint and reflect on his life. On his return trip
aboard a ship, he was captivated by discussions at dinner about
new experiments in electromagnetism. During that important
occasion, Morse made the following comment, "If the presence of
electricity can be made visible in any part of the circuit, I see
no reason why intelligence may not be transmitted by
electricity." In the face of many difficulties and
disappointments, he determinedly perfected a new invention, and,
in 1837, applied for a patent that became what we know today as
the telegraph. He also created Morse code. It was only later,
after many more setbacks and disappointments, that his projects
received funding.
Samuel Morse later commented, "The only gleam of hope, and I
cannot underrate it, is from confidence in God. When I look
upward it calms any apprehension for the future, and I seem to
hear a voice saying: 'If I clothe the lilies of the field, shall
I not also clothe you?' Here is my strong confidence, and I will
wait patiently for the direction of Providence." Morse went on to
create several other inventions and can be recognized today as
the father of faxes, modems, e-mail, the internet and other
electronic communication. ["Glimpses," Issue #99 (Worcester,
Pennsylvania: Christian History Institute, 1998).]
God's plans may not always seem to follow our natural
inclination. Perhaps God has you taking a path that may not lead
to His ultimate destination for you. Trust in the Lord, lean not
on your own understanding, acknowledge Him in all you do, and He
shall direct your path (see Prov. 3:5-6).

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


"He brought me out into a spacious place; He rescued me because He
delighted in me." - 2 Samuel 22:20

Questioning someone's motives for their activities can become an
overriding response to those to whom we relate. Wrong motives can
result in broken relationships, poor business decisions, and falling out of
God's will. Sometimes we do not know the motive of another person. It
is wrong for us to assume what their motive is until we have confidence
that we know their intentions. When we respond or react prematurely, we
become judge and jury over them.
God has a motive for every one of His children. His desire is to bring
us into a spacious place. He wants us to go beyond our borders of
safety and security so that we might experience life at a level that goes
beyond ourselves. What do you think of when you think of a "spacious
place"? No limitations? A large, grassy field? Open air? These are
positive images. Sometimes these spacious places encourage us to step
out in faith into areas where we've never ventured. Sometimes we need
to be rescued by the Lord. When Peter walked on the water, God was
inviting him to a spacious place. He went beyond the borders of his boat and
ventured into a whole new world. He didn't have complete success in his
venturing out, but it was a process that would lead him to the next
victory in his faith walk with Jesus. Sometimes failure is what is
needed in order to move us to the next level of faith with God.
However,we must be willing to fail and let God rescue us.
The Lord delights in this process. His motive for His children is
always love. It is always to bring us to a new level of trust and dependence
on Him.

Monday, November 1, 2010


"I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince of this world is
coming. He has no hold on Me, but the world must learn that I love the
Father and that I do exactly what My Father has commanded Me...." - John 14:30-31

There is a constant war going on between our flesh and the Spirit. As
Christians, the Spirit seeks to move us under the authority of His
domain in order for us to fulfill all that we were created for. Every
person was designed to be under some form of authority. Jesus modeled
this in His own life. He lived under the authority of His heavenly
Father. He made no independent decisions. He, unlike us, was sinless
and always remained under His Father's authority. He acknowledged that the
prince of this world has a hold on many, but did not have a hold on
The prince of this world does have his hold on many in our world, even
among our brothers and sisters. The one thing most of us want the
greatest is the freedom to make our own decisions. It goes all the way
back to the Garden of Eden when the decision was made to exercise a
personal right: freedom to decide, freedom of choice, freedom from
hindrances, freedom from pain. However, Jesus said He had no freedom of
choice. He chose only the Father's desire for His life. He was the
ultimate model of a man under authority.
Each day we must determine if we'll willingly choose to be under the
authority of the Father and the direction of the Holy Spirit. It is a
choice each of us must make. It is a choice that actually leads to
freedom, not bondage. Choosing to live under the authority of our
heavenly Father frees us to gain the greatest fulfillment in life-His
mission and the purposes He has for us. It is the little decisions of
daily life that reveal whether we truly live under His authority.