Pay Attention

The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.” (Deu 28:13)

Wow! What a promise. We will always be at the top, never at the bottom. We will be at the head, not the tail. That means we are the initiators. We are the ones who will dictate terms. We are the ones in control. We are leaders, not followers. Is that our experience? It is not mine—not all the time.

So what is the condition of the promise? We will be the head if we pay attention to the commands of the Lord and carefully follow them. If we do this and stand in faith, we will receive all that God has for us. We will no longer be pushed around by circumstances but living in victory.

Quick Prayer: Thank You that I am the head and not the tail. Amen.

Paying a price

“When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities.” (Acts 16:19)

Whether we like to admit it or not we often find ourselves serving God for what we can get rather than who He is. This is reflected in our prayers that are often “help me I want something.”

There are consequences for following Jesus that none of us would choose. We will get ridiculed and sometimes persecuted. We can take some comfort in the fact that Jesus was continually being taken to task and ultimately killed.

When we receive opposition take it as a compliment. Our enemy only has limited resources and when he allocates some to your life you must be having an impact.

Quick Prayer. “I know I will pay a price for standing with you. Help me be strong and protect my heart at that time.” Amen

Wisdom

“The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time.” (Luke 12:42)

Wisdom is not some high ideal that is gained by sitting in a cave in a desolate place. It is not a state, that only a few, who study forever will ultimately gain. Wisdom is a practical application of knowledge, understanding and revelation, to enable God’s Kingdom to be advanced.

The Word says if you lack wisdom, ask and you will receive all that you need. That is not a bad promise. There is no problem that God does not have an answer for. Seek Him and you will know what to do.

Quick Prayer. “More wisdom please.” Amen

Authority.

“The highest heavens belong to the LORD, but the earth he has given to mankind.” (Psalm 115:16)

I do have a soft spot for environmentalists. They tend to have a different worldview, and often a different political agenda, but we do have one view in common. We do not own the earth, but are just stewards of it. Avoiding damage, correcting wrongs and increasing awareness of issues, all are positive; as we have a duty of care for God’s creation.

The earth is a gift, and a somewhat fragile one at that. Why not shed our differences and make sure we pass on this incredible gift to our children in better shape than it is right now?

Those who want to protect God’s creation, even if they don’t call it that, are doing a good thing and should be encouraged. It is the politicization of the agenda and the often radically liberal views that have hijacked a worthy endeavor.

What can you do in your business to help protect and sustain God’s creation?

Quick Prayer. “Help me to be aware of the need to steward the planet well.” Amen

Restoration.

“At that time I will gather you; at that time I will bring you home. I will give you honor and praise among all the peoples of the earth when I restore your fortunes before your very eyes,” says the LORD.” (Zephaniah 3:20)

God is in the restoration business. He can and does restore hearts, lives, families, and fortunes. He can restore your business when all seems lost. Lives get changed when He is around.

Sometimes He can even restore before your very eyes healings, miracles, radical restoration, Godly reconstruction, and instant reconciliation. Nothing is beyond God’s ability to restore—no person, no business, and no situation.

The Bible is full of God “suddenly” doing something. Just when you least suspect it, just when it is at the seemingly lost point, God intervenes. He is never late, but He is, for whatever reason, very rarely early either; and our faith is stretched accordingly

Quick Prayer. “I pray for your restoration Jesus.” Amen

Takeaways.

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised.” (Job 1:21)

A God that takes away as well as gives? I am not sure that fits with our individualistic, self centered, post-modern, positive thinking, lifestyle oriented, materialistic, and capitalist view of God. Have we constructed an idol for ourselves? Do we expect Him to do our bidding? How easily can faith become presumption?

We are here a few short years. An insignificant spec in time, yet we demand of an eternal God, a conformity to our expectations. Sometimes we will not understand from an eternal perspective.

Sometimes it will look like God has done us wrong. He gives and He takes away. Will we still serve Him? Yes, for in Him are the answers to all things, and eternal life in Christ.

Quick Prayer. “Thank you that you give and that you take away in your wisdom.” Amen

A Place of Abundance.

“You let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.” (Psalm 66:12)

It is hard to understand how a loving God would allow things to happen, that we wouldn’t want to go through. Often He allows circumstances to occur, but always for a reason, always with an outcome, and always to a place of restoration.

Tough places are by definition tough. In this scripture they went through the mill, BUT…… I love that word. How often do we see His hand in times of struggle and strife, BUT God, BUT He, BUT then. Hope in the midst of turmoil, and deliverance to a place of peace, a place of safety and a place of abundance.

Quick Prayer. “Thank you that there is an end to the tough places and a place of rest is coming.” Amen

Calamities.

“Is it not from the mouth of the Most High that both calamities and good things come?” (Lamentations 3:38)

Hard times from God, I am not sure I want to hear that. Surely a loving Father would not allow such things to happen. Yet His ways are not our ways, His thoughts are not our thoughts. He has eternal things in mind we focus on the temporal.

Our surrender to God is not only an invitation for Him to come in, but a willingness to let Him be Lord, here and now, in the good and the bad. But let us not forget the life after this one, a future with Him, a heaven to gain and a hell to avoid. His free gift is eternal life, but it cost Him his son. His love for us in intimate and infinite; it is in the hard times that we truly learn to trust.

Quick Prayer. “Thank you for the good and hard times that can come form your hand Lord.” Amen