More Than You Expect

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us… Ephesians 3:20 NASB.

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Sometimes I stop and look back at the last forty years of life and shake my head in disbelief on how I failed to trust God in the difficult circumstances of everyday living. I believed in God most of my entire life but didn’t really believe Him until the second half of living. Again, if I could have, I would have. But life is a learning experience preparing us for eternity.

If we could reset the time, there would be a few (if not many) areas of life we would change. One area would be to remove the limitations I placed on God and myself.

I knew about God love, but how much he loved me was an issue. I didn’t know we are one of God’s favorites. My attitude was He constantly tested me for personal pleasure. He would throw me into situations that would take my breath away. He would challenge me with circumstances that would cause severe financial crisis’s. I didn’t receive blessings from Him (I mistakenly believed), but pain and sorrow.

However, in hindsight, I now realize how much He cared for me by protectively allowing one of his favorite children to go through trials, circumstances, and challenges that would strengthen me and learn to trust Him. I’ve also came to realize how many limitations we place on ourselves because we limit Him.

The more we came to lean on Him, the more we trusted Him; and the more we partnered with Him, the more He revealed Himself to me. Not with his physical Presence, but through the people, events, and circumstances of life – through His Creation.

Today, I am more amazed at how He works through others to reveal His blessings. The way He brings people into your life, the way He works out circumstances to bring about events which speaks to you, and the way He gives you the strength and courage to seek out the best.

Everything is possible with Him. He knows what is best for you. Yes, you and I have limitations. However, God has no limits. He is eternal. He is omnipresent. He made a commitment with you at creation. We just have to accept His authority in our life and get out of His way.

He is always going before you. Talk with Him. Ask Him how you can best present yourself to others. Trust Him. Lean on Him. He is doing a work in you for His glory, not yours. When you surrender to His goals and objectives, you allow Him to work through you. The result is a manifestation of His greatness. Your talents which He endowed you with and your skills which you have developed are join together with His purpose and His love for you. Together you will see more abundantly what He has in mind for you. And you will come to realize He has more in store for you than you can ever think, ask, or imagine.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

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Copyright 2013-2018 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

Just Because You Can Doesn’t Mean You Should

1 Corinthians 6:12

“All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be dominated by anything. ESV.

 

While driving your car in most states in America, you are allowed to make a right hand turn on a red light at an intersection after you stop your car. It doesn’t mean you have too, but you can.

In America, you can also apply for whatever job you want. You may not have the skills and temperament, but you can. Again, it doesn’t mean you should, or qualified, but you can apply.

Likewise in America, you have the right of free speech. The law allows you to express yourself with the protection of the government. Again, you have the right to say what you want but it doesn’t mean you ought too.

Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should. At the intersection, someone may be crossing the street that if you turned there would be a major accident. Just because you can apply for a job, you would be short-changing yourself, your employer, and others if you weren’t fully qualified to manage the work. Again just because the person needs much grace doesn’t mean you have to verbally abuse or assassinate their character because you don’t agree with them.

Because you can doesn’t mean you should. Chocolate is a favorite food for many. But there are those like myself that can’t control the amount we eat. Therefore, rather than be a slave to its gluttony desire,  we find it best to stay away. Sex is a strong desire with much pleasure. Yet outside of a committed relationship within marriage, it becomes a physical addiction and not an intimate, relationship builder. You can also have as many gods in your war chest as you need, but if the Triune God is not before them, first, and central, you are wasting your time and energy on worthless idols.

The bottom-line: You can if you so choose, but are the consequences worth it?

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2013-2018 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

 

Perfect In Christ

 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.  But when Christ  offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God,  waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet.  For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified. Hebrews 10:11-14 ESV.

How many prayers must you offer to God so you feel cleanse of your sins? Or how many good acts of service must you perform so you feel worthy to approach the throne of grace? Or how many dollars must you donate to wash away the guilt that clings to your soul?

The answer: just one may be too many.

What Jesus accomplished at the cross was to free you and me from the daily rituals of sacrificing animals (or whatever) as a peace offering to God. Instead HE paid the price as our substitute one time only to make everything right before our heavenly Father. In Christ, we have been cleansed from all sin for ever more.

Yes we will continue to sin in this life. We will commit sins of omission and commission. We will be the target of sin from others. And we may have to pay the physical consequences of sin. However, our eternal home and relationship with our Heavenly Parent will always be available. There is nothing we can do to make it better or worst. Jesus himself has made it perfect for us. In Him, we have all the riches and treasures of heaven and earth at our disposal. Not because we are perfect, but because He is perfect and through His perfection we are known.

So enjoy your perfection in Christ!

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2013-2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

Today, I Get To…

“Behold, what I have seen to be good and fitting is to eat and drink and find enjoyment in all the toil with which one toils under the sun the few days of his life that God has given him, for this is his lot.” Ecclesiastes 5:18 ESV.

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Experience God’s love…

Play in our Dad’s worldwide sandbox…

Celebrate another day of discovery…

Communicate with the Creator of Life…

Enjoy the beauty of creation…

Serve others through work…

Work for his glory…

Earn income by serving others…

Pay bills…

Drink a cool glass of water…

Eat candy, cake, and cookies…

Smell chocolate covered raspberries…

Hug my bride…

Skype with my daughter…

Ride a bicycle for pleasure and health…

Drive a car to the supermarket…

Plant a shrub…

Wash the windows…

Re-set the remote controller…

Watch football…

Read a book…

Trade the futures market…

Study passages from the Bible…

Attend a small Bible Study group…

Pray for our family, friends, and country…

Rejoice with a friend’s accomplishments…

Grieve over the loss of a friend…

Exercise compassion for another…

Extend God’s love with everyone we meet…

 

What about you? What are you fortunate, blessed, and grateful to do today?

(Reprinted in honor of Thanksgiving – originally published 1/6/17)

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

Dull, Blind & Ignorant

Acts 28:25-27
“The Holy Spirit was right in saying to your fathers through Isaiah the prophet:
“‘Go to this people, and say,
“You will indeed hear but never understand,
and you will indeed see but never perceive.”
 For this people’s heart has grown dull,
and with their ears they can barely hear,
and their eyes they have closed;
lest they should see with their eyes
and hear with their ears
and understand with their heart
and turn, and I would heal them.’ ESV.

Do you recall a time when you looked but never actual saw what was happening? Or heard someone speak to you, but never really grasp what they were saying? Or even acknowledged the factual answer but never truly understood the significance?

When the apostle Paul preached the gospel to the Jewish leaders at Rome, his frustration came through by finishing his discourse with the above passage from Isaiah.  He basically called his audience a people with dull hearing, blind eyes, and intellectually ignorant of God. Yet he also gave them a way out. If they were willing to acknowledge their inability to hear, see, comprehend and accept his message, they will be healed by God.

The Bible calls this repentance. To make a 180 degree turn from self to God; away from sin and toward holiness; away from prioritizing your estate as #1, to serving Jesus and His Kingdom as the primary focus of your life.

It is not until an addict can acknowledge their problem, before healing can take place. The same with God. Until a person can accept the reality of their hopelessness apart from God, healing cannot take place.

So if you can hear, see, and know but are having trouble listening, perceiving, and comprehending, maybe it’s time to do some serious business with our Lord and Savior. He is a professional at restoring life to His original intention. He can do the same with you.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

 

Bold Confidence

Ephesians 3:12
in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. ESV.

The Hebrew view of faith from the old testament emphasized Chutzpah or high confidence rather than just a mental exercise. This concept is also re-emphasized in the new testament from the Book of Hebrews. Faith is more about knowing you know because of the living experiences you walked through rather than just an analytical dream you conceive in your mind. We sometimes like to make practical applications into something religiously mystical. But faith is that bold confidence your body, soul, and mind expresses when you are faced with a challenge or opportunity.

How is this faithful confidence built? Isn’t it through life’s experiences? When we try something new and learned from the experience, don’t we grow our confidence? When we try and fail or succeed at something, don’t we gain confidence in the process? Isn’t it the same in our relationship with our Lord?

Yes we can have confidence apart from our Lord and in ourselves or abilities. But that isn’t the bold confidence we are speaking about here. That confidence is built solely on human skills and abilities and will eventually fail you. The Chutzpah we are writing about is that bold confidence you develop when you leaned on the Lord and in hindsight you know he carried you through the ordeal.

It is eating food and drinking water every day for forty years in the desert like the nation of Israel in their exodus march. It is like a teenager defeating a lion and a bear to defend his family’s sheep like David. It is a beauty pageant winner standing before the autocratic King risking her life to save her nation from genocide like Deborah. It is a confidence built through the actual experience of trusting God.

It starts with the small things in life and grows from there.

We all have been given faith by the Holy Spirit. But unless you use it, you will never experience the joy of knowing your heavenly Father and the riches He shares with His children.

Faith is fully alive when confidence exudes boldness. But it only starts when you place your trust in the God of reality.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Leadership 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

 

God Prepares the Way

1 Corinthians 2:9 ESV.
But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—
Ephesians 2:10 ESV.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

 

One of the joys of walking with the Lord is knowing He goes before you. Instead of manipulating circumstances or people which causes division and relational conflict, Christ-followers have the distinct honor of leaning on their heavenly Father in searching out the best means before them.

The fact is God has an eternal investment in you and wants you to succeed in life. However, not the way many people think of success. His desire for you and me is to build Christ-like character which leads to a productive life. The problem is most people want a productive life without the character.

When you know that God cares for you more than you realize, wants what is best for you, and has already prepared the way for you, your only challenge is to discover it and walk through it. How does one discover it?

Simple answer: By growing in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ; not only intelligently, but relational. We need to hunger for a love relationship so intimately with Him  that we can rest our heads on his “bosom and hear his heart beat.” We need to develop a relationship with Him were we know how He communicates with us. Whether through His Word, Spirit, our conscience, that slight nudge, or that inspired thought that comes outside our mind, we need a thirst for more of Him and less of us.

Biblically we see how John the Baptist prepared the  way for Christ. How His Father led Jesus through planned events which fulfilled scripture and proved that He is the Messiah. We see how the Spirit led apostle Paul throughout his ministry. We see the same with many others throughout the Bible. Even Jesus mentioned that he is preparing an eternal place for us.

In summary, you were created to do good work which God prepared beforehand for you to do (Eph.2:10).  Lean on Him and He will unwrap it for you.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Discipleship 360
Author of e-Books:

Dancing With God: Life-Giving Theology Explained
Great Business Emulates a Good God
Be Radical…Follow Christ!
Simply The Messenger
Unequally Married

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!


Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved