Friday, February 22, 2013

Let God Direct Your Steps

"A man's heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps."
Proverbs 16:9 (NKJV)

We all have goals, plans, dreams, and desires.  The saddest people in life are the people who have no goals, plans, dreams, and desires.  The next saddest group of people in life is the people with frustrated goals, plans, dreams, and desires.  So then the question we could ask is, "How do we make these things that we want in life become a reality?"  The book of Proverbs in the Bible is a book filled with wisdom from God; God knows the best way to do everything!  If we want to succeed in life we have to do things God's way.

We may find some temporary success and victory by figuring things out on our own, but for true long term success we have to allow God to direct our steps.  We can have some plans and desires in our heart but how they come to pass is best left in God's hands.  By that I don't mean that we sit idly by and just wait for something to happen.  What I do mean is that when we have some goals, plans, dreams, and desires we go to God with them and allow Him to give us direction in how we can make our dreams a reality.

Too often people get in a hurry to do something because they have a great idea.  We can have many plans in our heart that may never come to pass if we try to make it happen our way and in our time.  We need to allow God to show us His timing and His methods to bring to pass the things that we have in our heart because the majority of the time they coming from Him.  If what we have in our heart is not coming from God at all then it is extra wise to talk to God about that and let Him show us the difference between our desires and His desires.  God will give us goals, plans, dreams, and desires and if we allow Him to guide our steps He will lead us in the way that will help bring all of those things to pass.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Learning To Feed Yourself With God's Word

"Your words were found, and I ate them. And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; for I am called by Your name, O Lord God of hosts."
Jeremiah 15:16 (NKJV)

Going out to a restaurant that has a great chef who can prepare a wonderful meal for everyone to enjoy can be very nice.  There are many kinds of food you can find in restaurants that you can also make at home, even though they may be a little bit different than what they would be like in a restaurant.  God's Word is a lot like this, you can go and hear a pastor or minister who can teach and preach God's Word and it is great, but the really great thing is you can feed yourself with the same truth at home, whenever you want!

We know from the Bible that God has gifted some men and women to teach and preach God's Word, these people are like the chef in a restaurant.  Food is not limited to restaurants because you can also prepare your own food at home.  In the same way, God is not limited to speaking to us and revealing His Word to us only through ministers, we can take God's Word for ourselves and read it and God will talk to us!  Bibles are available in many stores today and you can also find the Bible on the Internet and there are Bible Apps for Smartphones so there is no reason for anyone to not have a Bible to read for themselves.

Many Christians do not know how to feed themselves on God's Word and they spend their life relying on others to read and study for them and to explain the Word of God to them.  This is good to a point, but we have to realize that no person should be our source for truth from God's Word; Jesus said that the Holy Spirit is our teacher and He will lead us into all truth.  So, don't just rely on other people to feed you God's Word all of the time.  Start reading the Bible for yourself and ask God to help you understand what you are reading and how you can apply what you are reading to your own life; learn to feed yourself on the truth of God's Word and let it be the joy and rejoicing of your heart.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Staying On The Right Path

"Let your eyes look straight ahead, and your eyelids look right before you. Ponder the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established. Do not turn to the right or the left; remove your foot from evil."
Proverbs 4:25-27 (NKJV)

Proverbs chapter four has a lot to say about our life.  There are several things in this chapter that when applied can help to make our life, our path, much better.  We are told not to enter the path of the wicked; that the path of the righteous is like a shining light that gets continually brighter; and that we need to ponder the path we are on.  So many times people have problems in life that can be traced back to the path of life they have taken, it is vitally important for us to stay on the right path.

First, Proverbs 4 tells us to stay away from the path of the wicked, in other words we need to keep ourselves out of obvious things that will lead us into trouble.  Some people are not really even paying much attention to the path they are on now, they are thinking about the path they took to get where they are today and often they are wondering about the path they will take in the future.  If we are not putting the proper focus on the path we are on now, if we are getting distracted, it will be easy for us to stray from our path and get into trouble.

Proverbs 4 also tells us that the path of the righteous is like the shinning sun that shines brighter and brighter while the path of the wicked just gets darker.  Immediately after this we are told that we need to focus on God's Word, that is a good way to help us stay on the right path.  Next we are told to put away, to get away from, the wrong kind of words; we need to avoid the words that will lead us down the wrong path.  Finally we are told to keep our eyes looking forward and not to go aside to the right or the left, this is how we ponder, or literally, prepare our path in life.  Saying the right things, focusing on God's Word, and not being distracted from what we are doing now will all help us to stay on the right path and have success in life.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Why Do You Do What You Do?

"And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ."
Colossians 3:23, 24 (NKJV)

There are a lot of things that motivate people: popularity, money, guilt, needs, and even fear.  But what should our motivation be for the things that we do?  Should we just do something because we can or because someone else wants us to do it?  Should we do something because it will make us popular with other people or just because it will be beneficial for us?  Colossians 3:23, 24 gives us the proper motivation for what we do; everything should be done for God because ultimately He is the One we serve and He will reward us for our work.

Sometimes people want us to do things, and they may even try to pressure us into doing something because there is a need or they might say if we don't do it something bad will happen, but again these are not reasons we should do things.  Or if our motivation is simply one of personal gain we can be sure that there is not going to be much reward from God in that.  Certainly God wants to bless us and give us good things but if we are selfish and only thinking about ourselves then we have the wrong motive.  Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 13 that if what he did was not done in love it meant nothing and he gained nothing.

God has a plan and a purpose for each and every person and we are at our best when we are following that plan and purpose.  We can always start with the general will of God that we find in the Bible and from there we can go on to the specific will of God, this is where we get our motivation.  God will show us what we need to do to fulfill His will and He can also show us what we should not get involved in.  If we follow God's plan and allow Him to direct us then we will live a life that is focused on God and doing His will, this is the best motivation and it brings the best rewards!