A Life that Works Diligently

The Lord made us to work and when we work then we feel better about ourselves and especially when our work has met a need, whether it is providing for our family or meeting a need elsewhere. There is a joy in being productive. The Lord worked and set an example for us in showing us that work is good.

Psalm 8:3 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, The moon and the stars, which You have ordained;

The Lord is still working and it is glorious. All His work is done in faithfulness to who He is and what He has said.

Psalm 33:4 For the word of the Lord is upright, And all His work is done in faithfulness.

Jesus glorified the Father on earth by accomplishing the work that God had given Him to do. The Lord has given each one of us work to do and when we do it, in faithfulness to Him, then He also is glorified in our lives and work.

John 17:4 I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do.

As we walk with Him then He will lead us into the good works that He has created us to do.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

The Lord wants us to work so that we may have something to share with others. Sometimes we might work for money but other times we might work so that we can give to others. Someone once said that a sign of maturity in someone is when they start to enjoy work. Working with one’s hands is also the prescription for the problem of stealing. Teach your children to work hard and you will be keeping them from the temptation to steal. Generally hard workers are not thieves.

Ephesians 4:28 He who steals must steal no longer; but rather he must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need.

There is something not only enjoyable about working with our hands but it also keeps us out of trouble and keeps us from eating the bread of idleness. It helps us to lead a quiet life with all godliness and dignity and gives us a good reputation with those who are unbelievers. Work is very respectable and we appreciate those who work hard and do well in their jobs, whether it is cleaning a room, cooking or serving a meal or managing a business. People in all fields are greatly appreciated for their excellent work. A lazy person is like “vinegar to the teeth” and a slack person is a “brother to him who destroys”, as Scripture tells us.

I Thessalonians 4:11b,12 and to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands, just as we commanded you,so that you will behave properly toward outsiders and not be in any need.

The hand of the diligent will rule and the Bible says that the precious possession of a man is diligence.

Proverbs 12:27 A lazy man does not roast his prey, But the precious possession of a man is  diligence.

There is something very unattractive about a lazy, worthless man who refuses to work. When work is kept in balance with having a day of rest each week, as the Lord designed for us, then it keeps our life in order and for the person who works hard, he will usually not lack the opportunity to work. It is the sluggard that says there is a “lion in the street”. There will always be a reason why the sluggard can’t work.

Proverbs 22:13 The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside; I will be killed in the streets!”

We destroy a person’s self worth and their ambitions when we reward them for not working.The Lord says that if a man is not willing to work then neither let him eat.

II Thessalonians 3:10 For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either.

The Lord made men and women to work and there is dignity in all work. When you are considering whether or not a certain young man is the one for you then you will be wise to marry a man with a strong work ethic. A sluggard is forever starting things but never finishing them.

Proverbs 26:15 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again.

Generally if you are a hard worker then you will be attracted to someone who works hard and you both will have a great life doing something together and seeing it accomplished. Whatever you do in word or deed do all to the glory of God.

Colossians 3:17 Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.

 

 

A Life that God Uses

There is great joy when you see the Lord using you to bring others closer to Him. The Lord gives us the incredible privilege of entering into His joy through service to Him. There will be some that will hear the precious words when they see Him, “Well done, My good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your Master.” The Lord allows us to taste of that joy here on earth.

Matthew 25:21 His master said to him, ‘Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master.’

The Lord has chosen the weak things of the world and the foolish things to shame the wise and the strong. Don’t feel as though you must be someone “great” for the Lord to use you. He delights in using the weak because then His strength and His greatness is made known. So, if you feel like one of the “least in the kingdom” then you are in a great place.

I Corinthians 1:26-29 For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are,so that no man may boast before God.

The Lord wants us to boast in Him and not in ourselves. He is the One who accomplishes all things. We are merely His instrument and get to see His glory and share in His joy.

I Corinthians 1:30,31 But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, so that, just as it is written, “Let him who boasts, boast in the Lord.”

However, if you want to serve Him and be used by Him then He wants you to be faithful to Him. Begin by learning to be faithful in the small things, such as, be faithful to spend time with the Lord every day in your quiet time with Him or devotions with Him. Spend time with Him, not just reading about Him, but communicating with Him. Spend time in His Word and allow His Spirit to speak to your heart. The Lord Jesus spent every day with the Father and first thing in the morning. He awoke every morning to listen as a disciple. The Jesus did what the Father instructed Him to do. He obeyed completely.

Isaiah 50:4,5 The Lord God has given Me the tongue of disciples,
That I may know how to sustain the weary one with a word.
He awakens Me morning by morning,
He awakens My ear to listen as a disciple.
The Lord God has opened My ear;
And I was not disobedient
Nor did I turn back.

Praise Him for who He is. Sometimes it is easier to take God’s Word and use it to praise Him. Thank Him for everything and learn to thank Him through the day. Talk to Him about your cares and concerns, which is an aspect of prayer. Another aspect of prayer is praying for others. The Lord’s prayer is a great help in learning to pray.

Matthew 6:9-13 Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
‘Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
‘Give us this day our daily bread.
‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’

Most people struggle with prayer and even the disciples struggled for it was the only thing they asked Jesus to teach them.

Luke 11:1 It happened that while Jesus was praying in a certain place, after He had finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John also taught his disciples.”

Finally, know the Word of God for His Word is what He uses. He uses a heart that is surrendered to Him and that is filled with His Word. Many of the people that the Lord has used were not in vocational ministry. Don’t seek ministry seek Him. If the Lord leads you into ministry then follow Him but remember the Lord uses people not positions.

II Timothy 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth.

Now, present yourself to the Lord. Allow Him to choose what He does with your life.

Romans 12:1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.

He is the potter and you are the clay. He formed you and made you and knows perfectly where the best fit is for you. He is the Master and we are His servants. The Master chooses and sends and the servant obeys and goes.

Isaiah 64:8 But now, O Lord, You are our Father,
We are the clay, and You our potter;
And all of us are the work of Your hand.

There is no limit to what the Lord can do with one whose heart is completely His and who has learned to be faithful in the small things. The Lord says that if you are faithful in the small things then you will be faithful in the big things. Be faithful, surrender your heart completely to Him, learn His Word and study it diligently and then trust Him. He does all things well.

II Chronicles 16:9a For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.

 

A Life that Is Content

Contentment is being satisfied with what you have and not always longing for more or something different. There is a lot to be said for contentment. Many a man would give anything to have a content wife. Contentment is a character quality that comes from the Lord. It is an attitude of the heart that must be practiced until it is who we are. The Lord wants us to be content.

Hebrews 13:5 Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,”

The Lord has provided all that we need and when we are not content it is a message to the world that our Heavenly Father has not provided for us. His name means “more than enough”. He takes care of His children and often gives us more than what we need so that we might have some to share with others.

I Timothy 6:8 If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content.

Discontent comes from envy and coveting. When we are looking at what others have then we will never be satisfied. The Lord wants us to keep our eyes on Him.

Proverbs 27:20b Nor are the eyes of man ever satisfied.

Things will never make you happy nor will people ever make you happy. Jealousy is also a symptom of a discontented life. Again, it is wanting what someone else has and not being content with what the Lord has given to us.

I Timothy 6:6-10 But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. For we have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either. If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

When we long for things other than what the Lord has provided for us then often it will lead to temptations and snares. Many a young couple has gotten ripped off by someone because of their haste to have more. Learn to work hard, wait on the Lord and trust Him. He is faithful.

Psalm 73:25-28 Whom have I in heaven but You?
And besides You, I desire nothing on earth.
My flesh and my heart may fail,
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
For, behold, those who are far from You will perish;
You have destroyed all those who are unfaithful to You.
But as for me, the nearness of God is my good;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
That I may tell of all Your works.

Let Him be your desire and portion in life. Your flesh and your heart will fail but He never fails. Let the nearness of God be your good and if He is, then you will have much to tell about for He is faithful to those who put their trust in Him.

A Life with An Understanding of Men

Women often will think that men are clueless when it comes to women but the truth of the matter is that often women are clueless when it comes to men. We need each other and yet unless we know the One who created men and women, we will never understand each other. Since this is a constant source of frustration among women it is good to know a few things that the Lord says a man needs and wants in a woman

Genesis 2:18 Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.”

A man needs a companion so that he will not be alone. He needs a companion with whom he can share his life with and who will help him and support him. He needs a woman who will respond to his heart, one who understands what he would want done and one whom he can trust.

Proverbs 31:10-12 An excellent wife, who can find?
For her worth is far above jewels.
The heart of her husband trusts in her,
And he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good and not evil
All the days of her life.

A man needs a wife who will love him all the days of her life and will do him good and not evil. He needs a wife who will not bring him grief or will shame him, a wife that he can confide his deepest needs to and she will still love and respect him, knowing that it is his weaknesses and needs that cause him to need her and love her so very much. A great marriage is one where both the husband and wife want and need each other but are not dependent on each other in an insecure way, but rather realizing that it is their mutual needs that cause each to complement the other so that each one can reach their full potential.

Titus 2:4,5 so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children,to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands,

The word “love” in this verse really means in the original Greek, to “want or be a lover of” her husband.  A man needs and wants a wife who wants him. He married her because he believed that she wanted him. The words “I want you” to a man are similar to the words “I love you” to a woman. A husband knows that his wife needs him but he wants her to want him. When she refuses him physically after their marriage then it can communicate a message of rejection. Just as a wife longs for her husband to love her so her husband longs for her to want him.

Ephesians 5:33 Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.

A husband needs respect from his wife. This is especially important when there are children in the home. The glory of children and especially sons is their father so when a wife does not respect her husband then she is destroying her children’s glory. We receive our self worth from our glory so the very thing that a mother longs to do in her children, see their confidence grow, she is destroying if she is in any way not respecting her husband. Respect is communicated through attitude, actions and words. An example of a lack of respect would be if she were to say, “Don’t tell your father….” or communicating in anyway her approval of anything that he would not like.

Ephesians 5:28-31 So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His body. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.

You will find that it will be a much greater delight for your husband to love you when you are a delight and joy to him. The husband and the wife relationship is the closest thing to heaven on earth if it is done God’s way. He ways are perfect and there is nothing to add to it or to take away from his ways.

Ecclesiastes 3:14 I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him.

It is the wise woman who seeks to do exactly as the Lord says. She will be blessed and she will be a blessing to her husband, her children and to the world. The world is longing to see marriage done right. It is only possible in Christ. To Him belongs all the glory and honor.

II Corinthians 6:14-16 Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; And I will be their God, and they shall be My people.

Finally, a Christian woman must only marry a Christian man. Marriage is binding of two people and a partnership in Christ. There will be no fellowship and no harmony in the relationship if a believer marries an unbeliever. The marriage is a union of the spirit, soul and body. If one person is alive spiritually and the other person is dead spiritually in the marriage then there will be no oneness of spirit. You will be spiritually alone if you are a Christian.

 

A Life Filled with The Word

If you will fill your life with the Word of God then your life will overflow with great joy, peace and thanksgiving. You will see the Lord in everything for all of life is an expression of His Word and who He is. The whole world is full of His glory. Your eyes will be opened and you will see His glory. As His promises fill your life then you will see His love for you in a thousand different ways.

II Corinthians 1:20a For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes;

There are over 5,000 promises in God’s Word and it is impossible for God to lie. You can depend on His promises and they are your greatest treasure if you are one of His children. The Lord is unchangeable committed to His Word and His promises will never fail.

Hebrews 6:17,18 In the same way God, desiring even more to show to the heirs of the promise the unchangeableness of His purpose, interposed with an oath, so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.

The Lord has given you the inheritance of His promises and He wants you to take refuge in Him so that you will have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope we have in Jesus Christ.

Romans 4:21 and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.

His Word is God’s language and when you speak His language then He hears you in a special way and will fulfill the promises that you pray back to Him.

Psalm 145:18 The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.

His Word is truth. The more you learn to pray His Words the more assurance you will have that your prayers are being answered.

John 17:17 Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.

Just as each one us delights in hearing our names spoken and our language spoken so also the Lord delights in the prayers of His people when they pray His Words.

Proverbs 15:8 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
But the prayer of the upright is His delight.

Your life will be full of life when it is full of God’s Word.

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

God’s Word is what will cleanse your heart as our heart is deceitful but God’s Word is like a mirror that when we look into it then we see our heart as it really is. If God’s Word is in your heart then the mirror will continually be before your life so that you will not forget if you just heard the Word and did not put in your heart. If your life is filled with God’s Word and you do what it says then the Lord says that He will bless you in whatever you do. A really amazing promise to the one who will do exactly as He says.

James 1:23-25 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.

Is your life filled with God’s Word? Is His Word within your heart so that you can do exactly as He says and not forget it? How does a person know if God’s Word is in their heart? If it is in your heart then you will talk about it. You will not be able to contain it within your heart but when you open your mouth you will speak what is in your heart.

Luke 6:45 The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.

You will not merely be a hearer of the Word but a doer and you will be blessed and you will be a blessing to many.

 

 

A Life that Is Powerful

Jesus Christ led the most powerful life of all because His life and death changed the world. What makes a life powerful or in other words, full of power? Power comes from giving up our “own” power and submitting to the One who has all power. As Christians, we have no power of our own to do good. We can do nothing apart from Him.

John 15:5 I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

However, in Christ we can do all things.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.

Only God is good and so the only good that we can do is through His power. However, His power is all we need to change the world.

Mark 10:18 And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good except God alone.

All power belongs to the Lord and He has given us the opportunity to be His power for good and to change the world just as the world has been changed through Him for many generations.

Matthew 6:13b For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’

There is none like the Lord. He is great and He is the Almighty One.

Jeremiah 10:6 There is none like You, O Lord;
You are great, and great is Your name in might.

A life of power for good is filled with the Holy Spirit and the Word of God. These are the two sources of power that the Lord has given us. Out of our innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.

John 7:38,39a He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive;

Jesus has power and Jesus is life. All authority and power is His. When we receive Jesus Christ then He gives us the power to live the Christian life and to keep His commandments.

Matthew 28:18-20 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

The Word of God is the power. We have no power in our words or opinions. Jesus Christ has called us to share His Words with the world and it is the power of His Words that changes the world.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

The gospel is the answer to the needs of all mankind. Once people hear and receive the Gospel then their lives are changed for the good and the goodness of the Lord starts to influence all those around them. Even if it is a small light then it still can light up the darkness. Once there is the light of the Gospel somewhere then it starts to spread to others until the entire area is on fire for the Lord. It only takes a spark to get a fire going. People are drawn to the light.

Isaiah 56:8b “Yet others I will gather to them, to those already gathered.”

 

 

 

A Life that Abides in God

If you really want to soar in life then you must learn to abide in the Lord and let His Words abide in you. This is the way of the victorious Christian life. There are no shortcuts and once you learn to abide in Him then you will want nothing else than to live in His presence.

John 15:4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me.

We can do nothing apart from Him and when we learn to abide in Him then we realize that He is the One who does the work while we rest in His power, faithfulness and love. Our striving to be fruitful is futile apart from abiding in Him.

John 15:5 I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.

This is a very simple truth. Abide means to live in. Your abode is where your home is. When you abide in the Lord then you make your home in His Word and His Words make their home in you. When you talk about His Words it will be as easy as telling someone about the things in your home. Since you see them everyday they are not strange objects to you so, in the same way the Lord’s Word will become as familiar to you as the objects in your home. When you share His Word with others then you will feel right at home and you will forget your fears and shyness. It will become the joy of your heart.

Jeremiah 15:16 Your words were found and I ate them,
And Your words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart;
For I have been called by Your name,
O Lord God of hosts.

You will find that as you abide in the and before the Lord then lovingkindness and truth will preserve you forever.

Psalm 61:7 He will abide before God forever;
Appoint lovingkindness and truth that they may preserve him.

You will also see that you have an incredible promise of answered prayers when you learn to abide in Him and His Words abide in you.

John 15:7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

You may wonder how do you learn to abide in Him and His Words abide in you. Begin by putting His Words in your heart and having them live there. At first it may seem hard but it is as simple as eating food. It is a skill that you learn how to do and then you will find yourself doing it often just as you eat food on a regular basis. Memorize the Words of Scripture so that they stay in your heart and then think about and pray over them. This will become almost second nature to you and will bring you much joy and strength as you learn to rely on His Words rather than your own understanding. Then do what His Word says to do. As you learn to follow His instruction through His Word then you will abide in His love.

John 15:9-11 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.

As you learn to abide in Him and His Words abide in you and then you keep His commandments then you will abide in His love and your joy will be made full. Your cup will truly overflow. There is nothing in all this world as sweet as living in His love and it being a reality in your life. Your life will be an abundant life, overflowing and filled with much joy. This is the life that He came to give you.

John 10:10b I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.

 

 

A Life of Generosity and Joy

Generosity and joy go hand and hand. The Lord Himself said that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Giving gets your eyes off of yourself and your interests and needs and causes you to become aware of the needs of others around you. The ore yo give, the more your cup of joy will overflow.

Acts20:35 In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

Giving gives you a heart for the Lord, for where your treasure is there will your heat be also. Your heart will follow your treasure. Time and money are two of your treasures that you can give away.

Matthew 6:21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

The generous person will be prosperous or successful.

Proverbs 11:25 The generous man will be prosperous,

Give to those who can not pay you back. The Lord says that even sinners give to those from whom they will receive something back. When you give to the needy of His people you are giving to the Lord.

Matthew 25:35-40  For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’

The person who gives to the rich will come to poverty. Give to a person in need and they will give you their heart.  When you meet the need of the needy then you are removing the obstacle in their life so that they can hear the Gospel. You are allowing them to see the love and truth of God so that they can hear the love and truth of the Lord.

Proverbs 22:16 He who oppresses the poor to make more for himself Or who gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.

Give to the poor and the Lord says that He Himself will pay you back. It is the only time in Scripture where the Lord says that He will become man’s debtor. His payment is in full and more. He remains no man’s debtor.

Proverbs 19:17 One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the Lord,  And He will repay him for his good deed.

Give to those who have helped you spiritually.

Galatians 6:6 The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him.

Your cup of joy will overflow as you give to the Lord by giving to His people, the needy and to reach others for Christ.

Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”