Why God Allows Tribulations?

But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold… He carries out his decree against me, and many such plans he still has in store. Job 23: 10, 14 NIV.

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  1. Earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes are some of the natural disasters that keep recurring throughout the world. Terrorist attacks, gang rapes, and robbery is a daily feature in the news. Divorce, unemployment, and poverty are social ills that continue plague mankind. Cancer, heart attacks, and unknown diseases hit homes each day. Accidents, thievery, and conflict occurs within our communities. There is no escape from the many trials and tests that life throws our way. But why?

Some say it is because of sin. Others because of our stupidity. And others still because of time and chance. Whatever the reason, if God is sovereign then why does He allow us unwanted trials?

Could it be maybe that God allows challenges in our life so something more positive may come from it? When times become tough, how do we respond? Do we toughen ourselves up, pick up our bootstraps and keep plugging away? Or do we finally admit to ourselves that we can’t do it any longer? That we are at the end of our hope. Without a miracle, “we can’t make it” becomes the focus. Then what happens? Suddenly, or maybe even decades later, circumstances,  people, or events occur that change everything. You are out of the mess you were in, and you don’t even know how to explain it to others.

How else does one become closer to God except when the bad times roll through? Maybe this is too simple for most, but isn’t it the trials and tests that allow us to either walk with God or run away from Him? When we choose to lean on Him, does He take the opportunity to build the faith he has given us by fixing the situation? Doesn’t He use these circumstances to transform our hearts and minds to become more like Christ? Maybe everything is not yet perfectly like we would want it, but one has to admit, it is better than before.

Life constantly throws lemons at us so we can learn how to make lemonade. We learn to make lemonade by leaning and walking with our Father-Son-Spirit. That relationship becomes closer, deeper, and more impactful as a result of surrendering the self and allowing the Triune God to lead us through the difficult maze we are seeking to come out of. Life is more about strengthening the relationship between God and you, than our comfort, pleasure, and goals. We are all being prepared to lead and serve for eternity as His children in His Kingdom. Today’s challenges are tomorrows trophies.

This may not take the pain away from your current ordeal. But at least you now know there is a greater reason and purpose for transforming lemons into lemonade.  It’s not about the drink, but the relationship that grows from it.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

 

How Many Words Does It Take?

The more words, the more vanity, and what is the advantage to man? Eccl 6:11 ESV.

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How many words are enough?

Ever found yourself in a situation where you tried to talk yourself out of? Whether being pulled over by the police for speeding, or caught by your significant other with your hand in the cookie jar, we try to justify ourselves by heaping words upon words. How has that worked for you?

When you are trying to persuade someone to your way of thinking, do you continue to heap words upon words hoping that the person will collapse from the mere weight of them?

When you find yourself in a conversation when silence blasts loudly in your ear, do you have to open the mouth so noise comes out or can you refrain and enjoy the quietness for the moment?

Most of the time it is not how many words we convey that matters. What truly matters is if we care, are open to the other person’s point of view, and respect the person for their opinion. Many times by asking the key questions and listening will lead you to accomplish more than battling with a maze of words.

Ever notice in many of Jesus’ dialogue with others, he was short and direct to the point. He didn’t try to outweigh others with more words. Instead the few words used hit their mark and he allowed the Spirit to work within the life of the other.

The book of Proverbs also states several times that even the fool when silent looks wise.

So the next time you are tempted to out talk the other person, stop, listen, and choose your questions carefully. Totally understand their point of view before succinctly giving yours.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

Are We Worshiping God or Self?

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.”  Romans 12:1 NIV.

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Do we really know how to worship?

Last Sunday while praising God through song, I stopped for a moment to analyze the words coming from my mouth. Suddenly I stopped singing and began to question my heart. Did I truly believe what I was saying?

The song we were singing was more about praising us than him. The name of the song really doesn’t matter, for I am sure the person who wrote it was truly expressing what was in their heart. But for me, it was like thanking God ONLY because of what was in it for me.

As a disciple of His, we crucified the self years ago. Yes, it arises occasionally to cause mischief, but most of the time it is dead. As a dead man walking in Christ, it is no longer about me, but HIM.

The words of the song though was about 80% me and 20% God. Is that worship? Or is that simply praising Him for what he has done for us?

Do we worship God because what is in it for me or do we worship God because of who He IS?

When the three men during Daniel’s time chose the furnace rather than bow to an image, they chose to worship God whether or not they survived the ordeal.

When the apostle Paul chose to go to Jerusalem even though the prophet told him his life would be in extreme danger and hardship, Paul chose to face death rather than the easy way out.

On the other hand, when Lucifer saw how beautiful he was made, he chose to worship himself rather than God. He allowed pride to gain access into his being and now lives under the condemned name of Satan.

Sorry, worship is not about you or me. In fact, worship is not even what God has done for you. Instead, worship is simply acknowledging Him for solely Who He IS while we function in life as His living sacrifice.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

How Do Blessings Come To You?

               In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Philippians 2:5 NIV

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Ever notice how God’s blessings come through relationships? The riches He shares with us are typically presented to us via people. If it weren’t people, how many of us would truly experience the vast array of God’s love-based arsenal?

Whether we are speaking about the relationship built within the bonds of marriage  and family, or the network operating within the business or social community, people are the means that God shares his attributes and wealth. Likewise, God works with people to disciple us, discipline us, and uplift us. He inspires people to share their personal wealth with us. He encourages people to reach out and support you & I during times of pain. He brings people into our circle to help us along the way.

When Moses was chosen by God to lead the Israelite’s out of Egypt, He brought Aaron along to assist him. When Ruth and Naomi found themselves without husbands and children, God brought them to a land to meet kinsman Boaz. When Saul became Paul in his early conversion, believers were unsure of his faith, so God brought Barnabas to him.

Throughout life, whether you lean on God or not, he brings people into your world at a time when you need help.

So cherish those around you. Greet everyone you meet as a brother or sister in Christ. Learn to follow the lead of the Holy Spirit in your life. You may find yourself one day being a conduit for the living God as He blesses others through you.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

What Makes Sin Ugly?

“Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin.” JN. 8:34 ESV.

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Sin destroys life. It prevents a person to fully experience their human potential. It causes dysfunctional relationships. It leads to a darken path that makes a mess along the way for others to cleanup. Sin produces war, crime, and murder.
It costs substantially more in the long run. It may look and even be pleasant for the short term, but it’s venom is poisonous. In many cases, it is a slippery slope without a soft bottom.

The quicker one can identify it and nip it at the bud, the quicker one will experience a fuller, enriched life.

Yes sin is more than just an attitude or behavior. It is open rebellion against the Creator who designed us for a personal relationship with Him.

So if you don’t know what sin is, take a concordance of the Bible and see what it truly says about it. You may be pleasantly surprise when you separate the opinions of others with the facts from the Book. When you do, you will appreciate God’s love, grace, and mercy more than ever before.

In addition you will discover a way of life that movies can never capture. A life of real Shalom.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

Education or Indoctrination?

“Have you understood all these things?” They said to him, “Yes.”  And he said to them, “Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old.” Matt. 13:51-52 ESV.

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It is rare today to meet an educated person. Yes, many people have college degrees. Many people have access to the internet with its smorgasbord of information. But most people we meet are like Johnny One Notes.

They like to sing but only know one song and that song only has one key. They fall in love with it and fail to realize that each note on a music scale has a purpose. There is great variety and options when one becomes expose to the vast array of music sounds. But if the only experience one receives is playing one note, how will they ever experience the classical masterpieces of yesterday? How will they ever enjoy the new sounds that are waiting in the future? Yet if one hasn’t been exposed to the great variety of choices, one will never know.

This is true in music and it is true in education. Most college students will enter the world with ideological ideas centered around a humanistic approach with life. Their center of the universe is themselves. Their code of conduct is based on personal experience. They have been indoctrinated with a philosophy of business, science, and humanities that excludes a Creator God.

When God is removed from the picture, people are left to design their personal faith. Generally speaking, that faith is built on their perception of reality. Truth becomes subjective. The old traditional values that have proven themselves over time are totally discarded. Instead, “if it is new, it must be better” is the mantra of each new generation.

Rather than exercise wisdom gain through the understanding of sound knowledge, feelings rule. “If it feels good, than let’s do it” becomes the pervasive religion. Who cares about the consequences. Or better yet, “I’m different. That doesn’t apply to me.”

If one wants to truly experience a taste of God’s Kingdom today, one must be willing to accept and apply the proven traditions of yesterday along with the Spirit led revelations of today and tomorrow. Jesus is making everything new. Yet the timeline of history teaches us that there is nothing really new today compared with yesterday when it comes to human nature and man’s relationship with the great Designer of Life.

Maybe you think you are the person who will prove me wrong. But Truth will always prove to be true. Our perception may change, but reality remains the same. We need not fear something new. Instead, we need to broaden our horizon, acquire the necessary knowledge and wisdom, and diligently walk with the God who created education. He is the source of all knowledge. He knows what is good for us and what causes harm. Don’t be like most of the educated and uneducated people in today’s world: trying to make it on their own. Instead of being indoctrinated in today’s cultural bias, maybe it’s time to become truly educated. It begins at the feet of the Great Designer of Life.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!

Who Is God?

 And they told him, “John the Baptist; and others say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets.”And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, “You are the Christ.”  And he strictly charged them to tell no one about him. And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man. Mark 8:28-33 ESV.

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Our concept of God most likely is incorrect. Peter’s was when he rebuked Jesus for portraying a Messiah that was not in agreement with his beliefs.

As the above Scripture indicates, Jesus asked the “Who Am I” identity question to his disciples. Peter correctly answered. However his concept of Messiah (Hebrew translation) or Christ (Greek translation) was distorted. He was taught and read only the Scriptures that identified the Messiah as a conquering hero. A person who was coming to re-establish Israel as the mighty empire it once was like during Solomon’s reign. So when Jesus revealed that he was going to suffer, die, and be resurrected, Peter confronted and tried to incorrectly correct Jesus.

Jesus’ reply must have caused whiplash to Peter’s mind. For Jesus sharply pointed out that his concept of who the Messiah is was incorrect. That Peter’s concept was the image of man’s interpretation based on humanity’s desires instead of the reality of God.

How many of us have the same, academic, partial portrait of God? We may read what others say about God. We may hear what others say about God. And we may even have our personal, third dimension perspective of Him. Yet, how many of us have a real, face-to-face, personal relationship with Him? How many of us know Him as we know our most intimate buddy? Not what people say about her, but what you have discovered yourself while sharing life together. Isn’t that what Jesus referred too when he corrected Peter?

Yes, Jesus is going to suffer, die, and be resurrected Peter. He is not going to play along with your distorted view of reality. Instead He wants you to hang out with him and experience a deep, abiding relationship with each other. Only when you live with a person will you learn what they are truly like.

Jesus the man was the perfect reflection of who God is. That is because Jesus the divine was God in the flesh. Peter’s perspective was a distorted view of who he perceived the Christ to be. How about you and I? Do we truly know who God is?

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Director & Founder
Marketplace Bible Institute
& Resource Center, Inc
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

Does a Friend Need Encouragement…Share Today’s Message!