Top 10 things in order to be an effective leader

Top 10 things in order to be an effective leader:

  1. You must have a vision (where are we, where are we going and how do we get there)
  2. You must be able to communicate this vision and convey it to your leaders (if you turnaround and not everyone is following refocus your efforts on communication)
  3. You must encourage those around you
  4. You must listen to those who you empower to carryout your vision
  5. You must often refer to #1 (have a vision) and #2 (communicate this vision)
  6. You must be relational (this means that you should comfort, encourage and urge others around you
  7. You must be open to those who you are empowering (give them a voice, because if they believe that they have value then your vision becomes even more invaluable)
  8. You must continually go through this list in order to make sure that you didn’t stray into your own circle of non-communication to your team
  9. You must be a humble leader
  10. You must be an accountable leader

All of this is only possible when your vision is aligned with God’s truth.  This is not about a man, instead it is about God who became man to save you and me!

Blessings,

Dante

 

 

What are some of the most important things to teach your children

Clearly there are numerous books on raising children.  Many have world views and some gems have biblical foundations in their writings.  My wife and I have relatives that told us (pre-kids) that you do your best parenting before kids.  We did the proverbial laugh and thought that we had it all figured out.  That, as you know, was not entirely so.  Kids are hard work.  Kids teach us a lot and if you asked me before kids, during it now and or when they are grown if I would change my view on having children, my response will always be the same – I wouldn’t trade them for the world.

The older I get (I am in my mid-forties now), the more I believe that God gives us the right to parent in order to show us just how much He loves us.  For instance, when our kids really screw up or make huge mistakes, my initial thought is that I want to scream and sometimes (depending on the infraction) put them through the proverbial drywall.  That is, until I realize to my self and say, “Self, this is how you make God feel about you (ALL THE TIME!).  My posture changes, I calm down and show them love.  Truth in love to be precise.

The Bible doesn’t specifically spell it our for us on how to parent, BUT it does give us a really strong foundation:

Make your faith real:

  • Proverbs 22:6 ESV Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
  • Deuteronomy 6:7 ESV You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
  •  Psalm 127:3-5 ESV Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior are the children of one’s youth. Blessed is the man who fills his quiver with them! He shall not be put to shame when he speaks with his enemies in the gate.
  •  2 Timothy 3:16 ESV All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
  •  2 Timothy 3:14-17 ESV But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
  •  Matthew 19:14 ESV But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
  •  Romans 8:28 ESV And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.

Do not provoke your children:

  • Ephesians 6:4 ESV Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.
  • Colossians 3:21 ESV Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.

Give them boundaries (don’t be afraid to discipline and say no):

  • Proverbs 29:15 ESV The rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child left to himself brings shame to his mother.
  • Proverbs 23:13 ESV Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die.
  • Proverbs 13:24 ESV Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.
  • Proverbs 29:17 ESV Discipline your son, and he will give you rest; he will give delight to your heart.
  • Proverbs 22:15 ESV Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline drives it far from him.
  • Proverbs 19:18 ESV Discipline your son, for there is hope; do not set your heart on putting him to death.
  • Proverbs 15:5 ESV A fool despises his father’s instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.
  • Proverbs 20:11 ESV Even a child makes himself known by his acts, by whether his conduct is pure and upright.

Pray

  • Pray for God to call them to be his children
  • Pray for the Holy Spirit to guide them to the truth
  • Pray for their safety and wisdom
  • Pray for their future spouses
  • Pray for their ears and hearts to understand God’s truth

Shepherd your child’s heart (there is a book on this):

  • Don’t try to shape their behavior, instead challenge the way they think
  • Don’t try to argue them into submission, be consistent with your words and discipline
  • Do encourage them to live a life worthy of God
  • Do comfort them (give them love, security and warmth)
  • Do urge them to live a life worthy of God

Parents that I respect the most are the ones who lead humble lives and have children that are jewels on their crowns.  Does that mean that they got everything right?  Of course not, but you can tell that there is something different with these parents.  Something worth looking into and perhaps asking them to mentor us on…

What are some of your lists?

Blessings,

D

 

 

Discipleship: Chronicles through Job (Part 2 of 5)

what-it-means-to-be-a-disciple-of-jesus-2_t_nvThe more that I read through the Bible the more the more I realize that it is reading me instead of me reading it.  There is a wealth of information in this great book and the Holy Spirit truly inspired the writing of this great manual.  Application from stewardship to living to contentment and so much more is find within these pages.  One thing to note, each time you read the Bible, pray that God will continue to reveal His truth for you and what He wants you to glean form this reading.  Pray for wisdom and understanding and take notes on what you read and what thoughts come to you.  When you feel conviction (journal) and when you learn something new, make a note in the margin.  Often, when you journal and re-read it is amazing how the Spirit works in each one of us to build His Kingdom.  Remember:  Less of me, more of God.

In Chronicles we learn to:

Be thankful, Sing Praises to God and Tell of His Good Name (share the Gospel) – 1 Chronicles 16:8-10

Be Strong and fight bravely using the word  of God

Devote your heart and soul to seeking the Lord - 1 Chronicles 22-19

Serve God with whole-hearted devotion – 1 Chronicles 28:9

God is good and His love endures forever

Humble yourself before Him - 2 Chronicles 7:14

God will strengthen you when you are fully committed to Him – 2 Chronicles 16:9

Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther

Stand for Truth, Integrity and Justice – The Book of Nehemiah

God is in control, so don’t be afraid to step out in faith for Him – The Book of Esther

God sees it all – Job 7:17-19

Jesus is there for us (from the beginning to the end):  Job 9:33-35, Job 16:19-21, Job 19:25

How to live each day – The Book of Job

How to gain wisdom understanding:  Job 28:28

How to avoid lust – Job 31:1

More to follow on the pathway of being God’s disciple.
What are some of your thoughts?

D

 

 

Discipleship: Genesis through Chronicles (Part 1 of 5)

Do you find yourself often wondering what God’s will is for your life?  Questions like is what I do relevant to God’s Kingdom?  Is what I am doing now where God wants me to be?  Am I the father that God wants me to be?  Am I the husband that God wants me to be (my wife wants me to be)?  Am I the dad that my children and God need me to be?  Do I love the Lord with all my heart mind, body and strength (does my checkbook and actions prove that)?

Dare

So many things matter to men and we are very deep minded creatures.

In Proverbs 20 verse 5 states, “The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.” (NIV)

As I was reading through the first fourteen books of the Bible, I was very keen to what discipleship would look like through the “OLD” testament.

 

I found these things to be true, accurate and confirming by the Holy Spirit:  As disciples of Christ we are to:

  1. Master Sin (even in anger):  Genesis 4:6-7; Leviticus 19:18
  2. Master Finances (Give God a tenth of our time, talent and treasure):  Genesis 20:20-22
  3. Obey God Completely:  Exodus 19:5-8; 1 Samuel 15:22
  4. Bless Others:  Numbers 6:24-27
  5. Keep His Word:  Numbers 30:2
  6. Do not fear any man, instead fear God (which is the beginning of wisdom):  Dueteronomy 1:17
  7. Love the Lord (with all of your heart, soul, strength) Deuteronomy 6:5-9
  8. Study and meditate on God’s word:  Joshua 1:8
  9. Serve wholeheartedly:  Joshua 24:15; Joshua 14:14
  10. Know your charge (what are my marching orders):  1 Kings 2:2-3
  11. Sing & Praise God Always:  1 Chronicles 16:8-10

God isn’t asking his disciples to just be fans – he want followers.  He wants men who want to know His Son as more than the God Man, instead He wants us to know him as friend.  Life is hard enough with its daily jaunts and stresses and questions in life.  Instead of pursuing what we think is best, why not pursue the maker of the world and to build community with Him.

Thoughts?

D

 

How to live a pure and peaceful life (a post from my 10 year old son)

treycar1My son has been fanatical about cars and not just any cars, but serious sports cars.  That is all he talks about and that is what he likes to think about.  Don’ t get me wrong, he loves God, loves his Mom and his sisters most of the time, but he constantly has cars in the commentary.    Which leads me to this post, because one day I had finally said to him that I was getting seriously concerned about his focus on materialism and the ways of this world.  I asked him, “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his own soul?”  His response was right on, he said, “Dad, there is nothing that is worthy losing your soul for.”

We then started talking about Abraham and Gideon and David and the Saints of the Bible and why there stories are so important.  I, then, talked about discipleship and what that looks like in our lives (weekly, daily, hourly and so on).  We talked about stewardship and responsibility and what God requires of us.

I love my boy!  He wrote this on a sheet of paper:

How to live a pure and peaceful life

  • Show self-control in every action
  • Do no fear what isn’t to be feared
  • Admit your emotions.  Do not be afraid to share them but be on guard with whom you share them with.
  • Wrath, anger, hatred sloth, fear are not to be shown but to be admitted to if absolute
  • Praise God day and night for faith in Him shall NEVER be feared
  • Obey Him always.

the listJames says to be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to be angry.  Paul says that if God is for us then who can be against us.  Paul also says not to become angry.  David was a warrior and a man with emotion and a man after God’s own heart.  The sinful nature is to be put to death daily.  The Psalms tell us to let everything that has breath praise the Lord.  Jesus, God, the Bible and its Apostles tells us to obey and submit.

I am not sure about you, but I am pretty sure that this boy is on the right track.

Dear Lord, give me the wisdom and discernment to guide this boy into a full-fledged relationship with you.  Teach me to teach him to Trust in you with all his heart, mind, body and soul.  Teach me to teach him not to lean on his own understanding.   Teach me to teach him to acknowledge you in everything.

Thank you Lord for your faithfulness (even when I am not faithful!)

Blessings,

D

With Accountability comes great responsibility

Accountability should be at the core of every bible believing ministry – no excuses.   Accountability means the state of being accountable, liable and answerable to those who are before you.  Before we go any further into this blog ask yourself this question, If Hebrews 13:17 tells me to submit to authority, then what does that mean for me if that authority has no accountability on Earth (because they most certainly do by our heavenly father)?  Ask yourself what does that mean for me if the person who I report to doesn’t follow any code of accountability?

You can Google just about any major mega-church and find gossip and lack of accountability in some of the most respected institutions of Growth and spread of the Gospel – what went wrong?  I have some thoughts on this and if any of these current or former leaders read this then my prayer is that truth (in love) will resonate and allow them to hear the Holy Spirit comfort them, encourage them, and urge them to live a life worthy of Jesus Christ.  I will not claim to have all the right answers nor can I say that what I may suggest in the post is the way that everyone should go.  What I will say is to test what Lance and I say through these posts – test them with Scripture and examine them closely and pray on what we say – if they pass this examination and test – well, then, the rest is up to you.

First and foremost, I want to say that whatever I may say, Lance may say, a preacher or elder or teacher or business leader may say – if it is not about Jesus Christ being the first and the last – then it is very unfruitful in the ways of building disciples of Jesus Christ.  Jesus doesn’t want fans – he wants followers.  That means that each and every one of us, who profess the name of Jesus Christ as Savior, we were bought with a price.  Our lives no longer belong to us or our wants, they belong to God.  What we do in this life is how we honor him with our stewardship of His time, talent and treasure that He gives each and every one of us who belong to Him..

Some questions, that we as members of bible believing churches can ask leadership who have accountability:

  • What is their fruit?
  • Who are they accountable to (a church board?  a board of Elders?  A consistory?)?
  • As I test what they say, teach and witness to, does it hold true to Scripture?
  • Is it about Jesus, reaching the disconnected and growing the connected?

both fruitsfollowingWhat is their fruit?  On a piece of paper draw a line down the middle of the page.  On the left side write the subject:  Fruit of the Sinful Nature and on the right side write the subject:  Fruit of the Spirit?  Your list should be based solely on what Scripture says in Galatians Chapter 5.  The Apostle Paul gives the Church a stern warning in this before he gives us the list of each fruit in Galatians 5, “13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 14 For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.”

Who are they accountable to?  If your church leader(s) do not have biblical accountability in their lives, in their work and in their daily regiments, I want to caution you.  In my church, we have a Consistory, which consists of the three offices of the Church:  The Pastoral, Elders and Deacons who oversee the Church.  The Management Team in some churches is set up to “manage” the daily operations of the Church, while the Elders are called to take care of the Spiritual well-being of the church and to make sure that the word of God is preached and to care for the flock.  The Deacons are called to take care of the needs of the church and the pastoral is called to teach and preach and feed God’s sheep through the Word of God.  We have accountability and we encourage each other to live a life worthy of Christ.  We gauge each other on the fruit that we see.  Sometimes we disagree, sometimes we can even argue, but as long as the word of God is consistent in our lives, then we can agree to disagree letting the truth of God’s word reign in our lives.

Examine & Test:  Do we/they pass the test?  2 Corinthians 13:5-9 (ESV) 5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test! 6 I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test. 7 But we pray to God that you may not do wrong—not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. 8 For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the truth. 9 For we are glad when we are weak and you are strong. Your restoration is what we pray for.”  One of the things that makes me cringe, as an Elder in our church, is when individuals say that this is what God is saying to them and what they should be doing (Please don’t take this wrong, because we both know that the Holy Spirit dwells in those who are followers of Christ and the Holy Spirit guides us in the ways that we ought to go.  We also believe that God talks to us through His Spirit, His Word, His preaching and teaching and when the Fruit of the Spirit is pouring over that direction).  What I am talking about here is when someone says that God is telling them something and nothing that I just previously mentioned lines up with that.  One of the things that I see most men struggle with (including me) is submission and obedience.  Hebrews 13:17 (ESV) “17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”  Before you believe that you are giving us leaders a “blank check” read this from Jesus’s brother, James 3:1-2 (ESV) Taming the Tongue, “3 Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. 2 For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body.” Leaders will be judged at a greater strictness (by whom, you ask, He who will judge all of us – Jesus Christ).

There are two leaders that I really respect and I have come to really appreciate their preaching and teaching.  I appreciate how they challenge each of us to be better in their walks.  I appreciate how they love the church and the body and how they love Jesus.  Are these men perfect?  By no means, they are all mere men and they sin every day (trust me – we all do).  So, than, if they do not have accountability, a board of Elders and Deacons and a Consistory to hold them in that accountability, then what are we to do for the body?

On the other side of this, are those who have been hurt, misguided, victimized and or maligned by lack of this accountability.  Does this allow us, who profess the name of Jesus Christ, to blog about, tear them down, print nasty and bitter words?  What is the fruit in this?  What does this say to the lost (the World) who is watching?  Does that make them want to follow Christ and his teachings?  Does that make them want to believe in the Word of God and the power of His Spirit to overcome the worst of sins in each and every one of us?

Are these words that are printed, recorded and redistributed loving one another?  Are they made to build up the church and to edify its members?  Are they there to love our neighbor as ourselves?  I would like to gently say – NO!  These words are from the pit of hell (not the person writing them or the individuals who have been made victims or the like).  I am talking about the very essence of these words – they are from the pit of hell.  How can I say this?  How can I know this?  How can I believe this?  Please re-read Galatians 5, Ephesians 4 and the very word of God.

These blogs, these news stories, these videos are bearing the fruit of the sinful nature (discord, disunity, factions and the like).  Any fruit that bears the fruit of the sinful nature IS FROM THE PIT OF HELL!

Now that I have probably made some of you uncomfortable, some hurt and some confused, let me re-direct you back to the point of this article – ACCOUNTABILITY.  The last point about accountability is this:

Is it about Jesus? (are we bearing his fruit?  Are we reaching the disconnected?  Are we growing the connected?)  Are church has a few core mission statements and one of the biggest is that it should always be about Jesus (from beginning to the end) and the other that we use a lot is:  Reaching the Disconnected and Growing the Connected.  I love this because Jesus first loved me in all my broken-ness.  His father (God the Father) loved me so much that He gave His only Son for me.  And if that weren’t already enough, when He rose again (Jesus the Christ) and now sits at the right hand of God, He gave His Spirit to each one of us who confess His name.  Talk about love!  Talk about forgiveness!  Talk about the great story ever told.  If you are in a church (which we are called to be in community as God the Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit are in community.  This is healthy and this is the body of Christ.  Therefore, we are to build each other up, to teach each other how to use our gifts.  We are to edify each other in truth with love.

No matter how bad the offense, the leader, the lack of accountability I can clearly promise you (through the very word of God) that every tongue will confess and every knee will bow.  I can promise you that those are teach and lead and direct God’s sheep in the wrong direction – will be held at a higher level of judgement.  All of this belongs to God.  I can also tell you this, without any doubt, that God IS IN CONTROL.  No matter the right or the wrong, God is still in control.  His plans will succeed and he will never fail.

What if we go through these very trials and tribulations to build us up and to test our faith in order for God to use us for greater things for His Kingdom.  Can we pass the test?  Can we forgive as Christ has forgiven us?  Can we love the Lord our God with all of heart, mind, body and soul and just like this commandment, can we love our neighbor as our selves?

This is the Gospel.  This is the truth.

If you are a leader and have no accountability then repent, turn from these ways and make it all about God.  Love!  If you are a follower or a member of a body of the church, then submit and obey and trust that God is in control.  Ask the right questions to those who truly have biblical accountability because when do ask these leaders they will pray, reflect and repent because it shouldn’t be about them, rather, it is always about God and His Kingdom.  If you find yourself speaking for God and no one else confirms this, nor scripture nor the fruit of the Spirit THEN REPENT, turn the other way and love!  Love one another thus fulfilling the command of Jesus.

If you are a leader and a denomination that says that you have accountability and you and your church are trying to justify sin (that is clearly listed and labeled truth in Scripture) then REPENT and turn away from these wicked practices.  God will forgive and his church will restore you as we are called to do.  If you are a member and you are living in sin and/or trying to justify sinful (hypocritical) behavior then REPENT and turn away from these evil practices.

When the body comes together in unity and loves one another, NOT EVEN THE GATES OF HELL can prevail.

Thoughts?

D

Conflict Resolution

yoda-quotes-2“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.” - Yoda

As a disciple of Christ this is a very difficult subject to breach.   You pick the topic and the subject and I can show you hundreds of years of conflict that has even divided Christians and religions.  Turn on social media and look at all the venom and cruelty of words that are out there (some even from the church that is embarrassing to watch/read).  Some of the most controversial topics are as follows:

  1. Relationships (husband/wife, girlfriend/boyfriend, sexual variation)
  2. Terrorism
  3. Death Penalty
  4. Global Warming
  5. Legalization of Drugs
  6. Healthcare
  7. Plastic Surgery
  8. Illiteracy
  9. Abortion
  10. Stem Cell Research

In the church, alone, we see each other argue over denominations, sexual orientation, baptisms (infant vs adult), politics and so on.  No one person or group is exempt from controversy.  The real issues are what we do when we reach conflict.  How do we resolve conflict and what does God expect from us through this process.  (Note: Already in some of your minds, you are saying, “No way” you don’ t know what happened to me and how can you ever expect me to forgive?).

Personally, I can share numerous times when life has not been fair or when I have been made a victim.  Sometimes I still think about certain events in my past and quietly long for God’s vengeance of these past wrongs, but then I am humbled and reminded that I do not want this negative attitude to turn back toward me instead of the aggressors.  God is everywhere at every time no matter how we try to spin that mind-blowing thought.  That being said, when this God sends His only Son to die for us and pay for our sins, then how can we say that we cannot forgive?

What does Scripture have to say on this:

Romans 12:17-21 ESV Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Steps to take (in no particular order)

  • James 1:19 ESV Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;
  •  Matthew 18:15-17 ESV “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.
  •  Proverbs 15:1 ESV A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
  •  Matthew 5:9 ESV “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
  •  Luke 17:3 ESV Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him,
  •  Philippians 2:4 ESV Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
  •  Colossians 3:13 ESV Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
  •  Proverbs 16:7 ESV When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.
  •  Leviticus 19:18 ESV You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against the sons of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.
  •  Matthew 5:24 ESV Leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
  •  Ephesians 4:26 ESV Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger,
  •  Ephesians 4:31 ESV Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice.

As Yoda so eloquently states, Fear leads to Anger, Anger leads to Hate and Hate leads to suffering.  There is so much truth in these words that I can hardly contain myself in typing this.  Think about prejudices (= ignorance and misunderstanding ON BOTH SIDES – which births from fear and then anger).  Think about Sexual hot topics (homosexuality, cohabitation, pornography, you pick the vice – again, this all leads to suffering).  Pick your topic (being a victim = fear leads to anxiety and bitterness and then leads to anger and then suffering).

This is a big ask of all of our readers (including yours truly writing this) but think of the Author of lies and of hate (malice) and deceit – none other than that old Serpent (Lucifer, aka Satan).  He is the Father of all lies and loves to tear good in half given any opportunity that God gives him.  Think of those that do not know Christ (ignorance and fear which leads to anger and hate which leads to suffering) – this all happens for reasons beyond our comprehension.  BUT (there is a big BUT here) there will come a time when all knees will bow and every tongue will confess and God will judge those who are not in the book of life for their transgressions (not knowing His Son) and He will judge the saints for what they have done being His stewards (of His time, talent and treasures).

What are we waiting for?  Let’s try to forgive as we have all been forgiven!

Thoughts?  Remember fear is the path to the dark side.  If God is for us, then who could possibly stand against Him?

Blessings,

D

 

 

How to be a man – part 2

In the Book of Job, we read the following text:

Job 29 English Standard Version (ESV)

 

Job’s Summary Defense

29 And Job again took up his discourse, and said:

 

2 “Oh, that I were as in the months of old,

as in the days when God watched over me,

3 when his lamp shone upon my head,

and by his light I walked through darkness,

4 as I was in my prime,[a]

when the friendship of God was upon my tent,

5 when the Almighty was yet with me,

when my children were all around me,

6 when my steps were washed with butter,

and the rock poured out for me streams of oil!

7 When I went out to the gate of the city,

when I prepared my seat in the square,

8 the young men saw me and withdrew,

and the aged rose and stood;

9 the princes refrained from talking

and laid their hand on their mouth;

10 the voice of the nobles was hushed,

and their tongue stuck to the roof of their mouth.

11 When the ear heard, it called me blessed,

    and when the eye saw, it approved,

12 because I delivered the poor who cried for help,

    and the fatherless who had none to help him.

13 The blessing of him who was about to perish came upon me,

    and I caused the widow’s heart to sing for joy.

14 I put on righteousness, and it clothed me;

    my justice was like a robe and a turban.

15 I was eyes to the blind

    and feet to the lame.

16 I was a father to the needy,

    and I searched out the cause of him whom I did not know.

17 I broke the fangs of the unrighteous

    and made him drop his prey from his teeth.

18 Then I thought, ‘I shall die in my nest,

and I shall multiply my days as the sand,

19 my roots spread out to the waters,

with the dew all night on my branches,

20 my glory fresh with me,

and my bow ever new in my hand.’

21 “Men listened to me and waited

and kept silence for my counsel.

22 After I spoke they did not speak again,

and my word dropped upon them.

23 They waited for me as for the rain,

and they opened their mouths as for the spring rain.

24 I smiled on them when they had no confidence,

and the light of my face they did not cast down.

25 I chose their way and sat as chief,

and I lived like a king among his troops,

like one who comforts mourners.

———

imagesFollowing up on a previous post that I wrote about manhood, we discussed the following in our Men of Faith Group this morning:  What does biblical manhood look like for a disciple of Christ.  How does God want us to be true men:

DIVINE PURPOSE
Jeremiah 29:11-12 (ESV)11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare[a] and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you.

1 Thessalonians 4:3- (ESV) 3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification:[a] that you abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each one of you know how to control his own body[b] in holiness and honor, 5 not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;

UNDIVIDED HEART

1 Corinthians 13:11 (NIV) 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.

Psalm 119[a] א Aleph 1 Blessed are those whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord.

STRONG AND COURAGEOUS

Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV) 6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

1 Corinthians 16:13-14 (ESV) 13 Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. 14 Let all that you do be done in love.

1 Kings 2:2 (ESV) 2 “I am about to go the way of all the earth. Be strong, and show yourself a man,

ABOVE REPROACH

1 Timothy 3:2-7 (ESV) 2 Therefore an overseer[a] must be above reproach, the husband of one wife,[b] sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

————–

Welcome-to-ManhoodWherever you are in your journey as Christ’s disciple, it is never too late to fear the Lord (in awe of Him) and confess and repent and move toward the man that he wants you to be.  For me, on vacation recently, I realized that one of the things that I was struggling with was a divided heart.  I love the Lord and I read His word and pray everyday, but the Lord revealed to me that I was not pursuing him, rather I was be routine with Him instead of relational.

 

God doesn’t just want a part of us, he wants all of us including our attention and focus (He wants a relationship with each of us).

 

 

Are there any things that you have to let go of and/or repent of to be the man that God wants you to be?

Looking forward to hearing from you,

Blessings,

D