Let God Define You, Instead of Allowing People To

Over the years, I’ve had the privilege to meet with a lot of very talented individuals. Most of them have a natural talent or ability apart from their day jobs. A great deal of them are super passionate about it. They’ve even invested large amounts of time and money to further hone their skills. Yet, most of them never get past that final obstacle that holds them back from ever living their dreams.

In the end, it usually comes down to one very troubling notion for them…

Fear.

And it usually stems from what other people will think.

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Power in Song (Sun in My Eyes)

Here is a song I heard this morning and figured I’d share with you for some Monday motivation. I hope you enjoy it. (Lyrics below the video).

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New Year, New Struggles (But New Hopes, Too)

Forgive me for not posting here in a very long time…

An entire year has gone by and yet it feels just like yesterday when I got the new job offer. (Yes, I finally received my blessing almost one year to the day.) Here is my last post while still at my previous job to give you an idea of where my emotions were. Though I wish that a one year anniversary would be a reason for sheer celebration, that’s not necessarily the case.

As I think back on the past year, the anniversary becomes more of a reason to be reminded of my ongoing need for God. We often pray to Him when things take a turn for the worst in our lives, but truly we need Him more, especially when things go right.

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The Power in Reconciliation

Sometimes when we are so far removed from God, we tend to hangout in the darkness rather than reflect in the light He shows us every day. Evidence of this can be found in our very actions and motivations, or something as simple as the words that come out of our mouth. When God is near, we experience the joy of His presence. But when we push Him away, darkness quickly sets into our hearts. We may find ourselves in constant internal turmoil or be unwilling to forgive others like Jesus forgives us.

There was a sermon delivered by Pastor John Stange (from my home church at Core Creek) in which he talked about the struggles the prophet Jeremiah endured while he preached to the kingdom of Judah beginning around the year 627 B.C. At that time, the people were not very receptive to his message. In fact, they never welcomed Jeremiah at all and were continually at odds with him about it.

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Forgiven but Forgotten

How often do we accept the notion that Jesus forgave us and yet we choose to forget Him?

As I sat there in the company meeting this week, overlooked and undervalued in my current title, I remembered a time when the executive leading it had promised me a different position—one which better utilized my skills in a greater capacity. She told me that she’d reach a decision by December as to how that would pan out. Well, that conversation was in September and I still haven’t heard about it since then. (And yes, I’ve followed-up, but to no avail…or response.)

I then looked to my right, at the supervisor who had promised me I’d be promoted and in charge of a position they were looking to fill two years ago. I remembered how hopeful I had become upon hearing this news at the time. (But I never got the opportunity to shine since they hired an internal candidate instead and explained how it “wouldn’t make sense” for me to be in charge of someone much older than me.)

Again, I thought about how badly I wanted a new job and was reminded of the plethora of contacts I still have in my back pocket. But out of those 350 job applications I have placed out there since last year, I have had interviews with just four. (And still not a single job offer from any of them.)

The enemy did a good job in reminding me of how much I’ve been forgotten about and overlooked these last several years. So I prayed to God for the 74918903113th time.

When will this end, Lord?

He didn’t answer my question, but instead provided me with insight.

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Revering the Holy Name of God

A Levite was a man between the ages of twenty and fifty in the days of the Old Testament—a descendent from the line of Aaron that had been called to do priestly work. One of the jobs of the Levites was to transcribe the text of the Torah. These scribes meticulously copied what were on the scrolls given them—the ancient books of the Bible—to make sure every word was accurately and precisely passed down for generations to come. The level of detail and integrity was of utmost importance since this was not just any text; it was a holy text.

Every single letter was duplicated precisely so that not a single error was made. Once the scribe was done with his day’s work, an older Levite would come over to inspect it. This older man would choose a letter at random, and if it didn’t match up perfectly with the original text, the entire scroll was discarded and the scribe would have to start all over again. Continue reading

Forgiveness Without Explanation

We have all been hurt before, or maybe even betrayed by somebody at some point in our lives. (If you don’t know what that feels like, be on guard, because it will inevitably happen to you at some point. It even happened to Jesus and He was the Son of God!) None of us are immune from the pain of these moments and recently I was reminded of just such a thing. Continue reading