Archives For purpose

The way many of us live relegates God to an afterthought. After we’ve done everything we want to do, spend money on things we want to buy, and talk to the people with whom we want to speak, then we are ready to communicate with God. We owe God the firstfruits of all our offerings (Nehemiah 10:35-37). This implies we also owe Him a tithe on our time. He should get the best of our time, not the leftovers.

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To me, this means beginning each day with God. To not begin the day with God is a recipe for disaster. I see how He rejected Cain’s offering but accepted Abel’s (Genesis 4:3-5). I don’t want to insult God with the time I give to Him. It needs to be my very best, and it needs to be the first I have to offer.

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Every now and then, I hear or read something which flips the way I’ve always looked at things upside down. The latest instance of this came courtesy of Francis Chan. He wrote, “We believe we deserve certain rights as humans. Yet we give little thought to the rights God deserves as God.” How many times have you heard (or said yourself), “Why did God allow this to happen?” Questions like these assume we have certain rights ascribed to us as humans.

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They also ignore the fact that, before we can ever begin to discuss what we as humans deserve, we must first consider what rights and expectations are ascribed to God simply because He is God. When was the last time you gave this any thought? We are quick to proclaim our own offense without ever considering our very declaration might offend the object of our affection. We first and always must consider what God deserves from us.

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Are you going through the motions as you walk with Christ? I look back on a couple generations of church-going Christians who have done a wonderful job of keeping their traditions alive. How many things have come and gone since the local church began meeting? For hundreds of years, Sunday after Sunday, people have flocked to churches. Even those who can’t seem to make it every Sunday still show up on Easter and Christmas.

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While the implementation of the details has changed over the centuries, the format has remained virtually untouched: Sing a couple songs, listen to a sermon, sing another song, and go out en masse to live our lives as if nothing has changed. Such is the legacy of the modern church. There is no doubt we are going through the motions and will probably continue to do so for another couple hundred years.

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What if you were starting over in your walk with Christ? What would you do differently than you are doing right now? It’s easy and even inevitable to fall into ruts if we are not intentional in our choices. Are you living the life you know Jesus wants you to live? Why not? What’s holding you back? What fears have been getting in the way of you living your potential and becoming the person God created you to be?

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I admit it’s a lot of questions to throw at you all at once, but if we aren’t taking the time to evaluate where we are in our relationship with Jesus and how we’re doing in our walk, we will continue to drift along doing the same things we’ve always done and achieving the same results we’ve always gotten.

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It is said what has your attention has you. My experience has proven this to be true. If God has your attention, then God has you. You are a servant of the King. What if God doesn’t have your attention? What if your attention is split between many things or worse yet, anywhere but God? Is anything other than God worth your attention? Regardless of the circumstances, I can’t think of anything more important than God… ever!

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Begin with God and everything else tends to fall into place one way or another. If we want to be disciples of Jesus though, I think we must go beyond attention. We need to be consumed with God to the point we struggle to think of anything or anyone else. So, let me ask the question, what consumes you?

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It’s a fact of life. Everyone and everything gets old, wears out, breaks down, and dies. When we lose those close to us, it can be a devastating loss. It seems to always come as such a surprise as if we expected the one we loved to be the exception to the rule. They would be the one to cheat death and live forever! Certainly, some deaths come more unexpectedly than others, but considering none of us have the guarantee of another breath, shouldn’t we be doing a better job of cherishing the moments we have right now?

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Let’s face it, everything dies. We will die. The key is to prepare our souls first and then help others prepare for that day as well. Death is certain. There is no getting around it, so why do we work so hard to avoid thinking about it?

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Be careful! When you surrender your life completely to Christ, expect Him to give you some God-sized goals and work to do. The brilliant part of this plan is our God-sized God can accomplish all the God-sized goals he conceives. The fact He would engage people such as you or me to accomplish His work is beyond all reason, wonder, and logic. Yet, it’s what He does. God invites us to partner with Him in His mission for all humanity.

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Our role is to be surrendered, committed, and obedient. We only need to do what He tells us to do. Even when things look impossible, we simply must have the faith to believe it will be accomplished. That’s God’s role in our partnership. He gives us the dream and the abilities to see the dream to fruition. Whatever we lack, He Himself will supply.

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I love A.W. Tozer. Perhaps no one has had a greater impact on my walk with Jesus than this late, great preacher. Tozer once wrote, “Anyone can do the possible; add a bit of courage and zeal and some may do the phenomenal; only Christians are obliged to do the impossible.” I understand this isn’t scripture, but A.W. was a man who walked incredibly close to our God. I hold what he said in the highest regard.

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Did you catch what he said about doing the impossible? He didn’t say we should try to do it, or we should pray to be able to do it, he said we are obliged to do the impossible. Obliged means to “make (someone) legally or morally bound to an action or course of action.” In other words, we are morally bound to do the impossible!

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What matters most to you? Before you answer, you may want to review your last couple of days, weeks, months, and maybe even years. Would your actions leading up to today support your answer? I am guilty of allowing life to roll on too quickly without taking the time to make certain I’m not simply be dragged along with it.

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If you aren’t intentional about the way you are living, what difference does it make what’s most important to you? Unless you are living life on purpose you won’t be doing what matters most to you. That’s no way to live. We all want our lives to count, to mean something to someone. As followers of Christ, we all want our life to matter for the Kingdom.

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I have a friend who frequently laments they don’t have any gifts to use for the Kingdom. I have to consistently remind them if they have breath, then they have been created with a unique combination of skills, talents, and passions to be used for building the Kingdom of God here on earth. I will say the same thing to you: if you are breathing, you have gifts! No one is here by accident.

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While some gifts may be more visible and obvious than others, it takes all of us working together to accomplish the work Christ has given us to do. Never minimize your contribution, because you have the potential to do everything God intended you to do.

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