God Waste’s Nothing

When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. Matt. 26:8 ESV.

Jesus was visiting Simon the leper at his house when a woman came to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment. She poured it on his head as he reclined at the table. The disciples saw it and became indignant because they believe it was a waste of money. However, Jesus’ reply was on the act itself which came from her heart. He took the situation and directed the focus toward the gospel message, his coming burial, and her worshipful testimony.

God waste’s nothing.

You & I may look at a situation and develop an expected outcome that we consider good or bad. However, God looks at the heart of the people involved and turns it into a teachable moment for those who have eyes to see and ears to hear; hopefully you and I.

Jesus was having dinner at a tax collector’s house surrounded with other undesirables (in the eyes of the Pharisees). These teachers of the Law questioned Jesus’ association with people who were sinners. Again Jesus took the moment to share the gospel message.

God waste’s nothing.

What may look like contempt to us, or a challenging moment, may prove to be the changing point in our lives. Every act, every circumstance, every situation, is truly a moment of time God works to create His masterpiece in each of us. God is always working through the good and the bad for our benefit.

God waste’s nothing.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Discipleship 360
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

 

Faith, Character, Wisdom

…so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. 1 Cor. 2:5 ESV.

When you review the last 40 years of my life with the people who entered into our small world, most have more faith then they generally believed. There limitations usually came from the so call general education they received from others. Some were consistently placed in positions that limited their thinking or distorted their view of life. Others were surrounded by people who put the fear of the unknown in their heads. And some went the other extreme believing fantasies and lies while living in denial. In fact, most of these people put more faith driving down a two-lane road then exercising the awesome gift they already have in their possession.

Faith comes from God. He allocates as He desires. A little is all you need. The problem is most of us would rather rely on ourselves, or our associates rather than trust God.

When one’s journey takes them into the deep crevices of life were darkness penetrates the soul, and we survive, nothing will ever be the same again. For most of us, it is in the pits of life when we recognize Jesus as He shares His faith, character, and wisdom with us.

After such an ordeal, we realize what real faith is and the assurance we have from Him. We begin to recognize the Godly character and wisdom we lack and desire to have. Typically, after such an experience, we want more of Him.

So we pursue him through religion, but eventually discover how empty and unfulfilling performance-oriented living becomes. We cram our brains reading and studying philosophies of the great minds who have gone before us. But soon realize they don’t have the answers either. We may bury our pain with drink, food, or sex. But the demons remain. Only when we surrender our heart to Jesus, will we experience the real fruit of godliness.

When He enters into our lives, we learn to follow his ways. When He carries us through our struggles, we learn to trust Him. When He answers our prayer requests, we pray more. When He instructs us through His Word, we gain wisdom for living. When He shapes and molds our character, we experience the fruit of His masterpiece.

Over time, He shows his love for us by molding us into the character, faith, and wisdom He manifests.  Grateful we become because of the workmanship He displays in us and through us. With humility we learn to exercise the fruit of His work. He receives all glory, honor, and respect because we know where we came from and now appreciate where we are in the hands of our Maker. He is the Teacher, we are the student. He is Lord, we are His subject. He is the Source, we are the recipient.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Discipleship 360
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

Blind, Broken, Busted

Because you say, “I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,” and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I (Jesus) advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me. He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. Rev. 3:17-21 NASB.

Pride blinds us all. We look at the physical dressing around us instead of the inner heart and convince ourselves that everything is all right. Yet deep inside, we know something is not right. Instead of dealing with the issue, we ignore our conscience and keep doing the same thing. Maybe it will go away.

Yet the knocking continues. Even while your bank account keeps growing, your dreams become reality, and your fame spreads throughout the marketplace, that gnawing feeling will not leave you alone.

What is happening?

Your Father God is calling you. He is happy for your success. But wants you to also experience the real treasures of life. So He keeps calling you. He keeps knocking at your door. He is waiting for you to open the door. He wants to break bread with you. But more importantly, He wants to share His life with you.

He wants you to experience real wealth; the riches from His storehouse. He wants to cloth you with the same holiness he wears. But more importantly, He wants to share his authority and influence with you to positively impact the world for others.

So don’t ignore him. Don’t push him aside. When your inner ear hears the knock, just lean against the door. He is waiting with open arms to meet you. When you two meet, you will experience the greatest high this life has to offer.

Compared to Him, we are all blind, broken, and busted. Yet with Him, He takes away our pride, shame, and pain and replaces them with his rich treasure chest of humility, love, and joy.  He will change your life forever.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Founder of
Vocational Discipleship 360
Author of e-Books:
 *  Great Business Emulates a Good God
 *  Be Radical…Follow Christ!
 *  Simply The Messenger
 *  Unequally Married

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Copyright 2017 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

 

The Great Dance

“How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He’s the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son.” Ephesians 1:3-6 Message.

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Abundant joy, overflowing love, insurmountable peace, ridiculous generosity, impeccable goodness, eternal patience, heartfelt kindness, child-like gentleness, and atomic-clad self-control are only a few of the elaborate notes that penetrate our souls as we dance with the Triune God. Like two people waltzing in step across the dance floor to the music of a large orchestra is how our relationship with God manifest itself on those unpredictable days. They make up for other days we find ourselves sitting in a funeral parlor of life leaning on God’s shoulder in tears listening to the dirge of pain and hoping that this day will quickly past so we can again recapture the richness of His presence. Both days have their place in life. But of the two, we would much rather spend time on life’s dance floor in the arms of the Man-God, Jesus Christ.

To observe the setting sun over the gulf coast on a warm sunny beach day, or the breath-taking majesty of the Grand Canyon, are simple times we witness the beauty of our Creator’s work. When we study quantum theory or simple geometry, we recognize a mind greater than ours. To witness the birth of a baby and the loving devotion of a mother with her children makes one realize life is so much more than work, eat, and sleep. When one comes to know Father-Son-Spirit and begins to move in step with Him, the dance comes alive. The music, rhythm, and movement of life are enriched with the presence of the Almighty.

We learn to dance with the Triune God through life’s challenges and opportunities. We discover there is a time to dance the waltz, cha-cha, and polka. Other times we do the jitterbug, rock-and-roll, or disco. Sometimes we simply hold on to each other and slowly two-step capturing the moment.

When we observe others around us, they are either moving to the rhythm of life’s great dance partner or bewildered and lost. Like a  young daughter with her father at a pre-teen Valentine dance, the movements may be awkward at first but the moment is captured for eternity. The same is true in our relationship with the Eternal. He wants to dance with each of us. To show us how much more life can be. To reveal what this world has blinded us too. He has already given us a home with an awesome dance floor. We just have to accept the fact that He is the One and be willing to follow His lead through the Great Dance.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

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

What is Salvation All About?

“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people…” Titus 2:11 ESV.

salvation

Salvation is not a prize, an event, nor a commodity. Salvation is the relationship you have in Jesus Christ with His Father via the Holy Spirit. To realize you are included with Him in his life, death, resurrection, and ascension into heaven brings greater meaning to Who He IS and your participation with Him. That you are a new creation in Him. That you have been reconciled (saved)with His Father. That you are now connected with Jesus and the Father via the Holy Spirit – adopted into the Triune God circle. Yet to experience this new life, you need to change your thinking (repent) and yield yourself to His authority (become his disciple). In so doing, you begin to experience the life (sanctification) that Jesus finished for you. The end result is eternal life (glorification) with Him in the new age.

You begin to experience this new life when you realize your identify is bound in Christ. Unlike the world’s response, your identity is not found in yourself but in the personhood of Jesus Christ. Apart from Christ, when we realize something must change in our lives, we usually begin to modify our environment. When that doesn’t make a difference, we then work to change our behavior. When that fails, we move toward increasing our capacity of knowledge or skill. After then, we may begin to clarify our beliefs. Lastly, we come to realize our identity of who we think we are is incorrect and needs adjusting.

However with Christ, we first begin with correctly identifying who we are in Him. We start at the top rather than move from the bottom to the top. We come to more quickly capture the knowledge and realization of God and ourselves in the process.  From our relationship with Christ, our identity is clarified. Our beliefs are aligned with reality. Our desire to grow in knowledge and skill is intensified; not for our sake but for the sake of others. Our attitudes change which leads to our behavior becoming more Christ-like. Then finally our environment becomes the breeding ground for ministry as we express God’s love and Kingdom ways for others to behold. We become a living testimony of God’s workmanship. He is glorified. We reap the benefits. Others are introduced to the God of Jesus Christ.

Salvation is freedom with Christ. Free from loneliness, because you belong to Him. Free from fear, because His love penetrates through you. Free from anxiety, because His faith assures you. Free from sin’s anguish, because His grace abounds in you.

Again, salvation is not a prize, event, nor commodity. Salvation is your relationship with Jesus Christ and His  Father via the Holy Spirit; Salvation is Christ’s finished work.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

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

What Is Worship?

“We know that God does not listen to sinners, but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does his will, God listens to him.” John 9:31 ESV.

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Worship is the outer expression of your inner values. Jesus taught “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (MT. 6:21).” Therefore, worship is expressing what you value most. The question is then: Who or what do you worship?

Every person worships someone or something. If you listen to yourself talk, you will quickly discover what you worship. If your conversations are always recurrently filtered with family, money, movies, people, sex, sports, self, business or whatever, you may have a hint toward what you consider most important in your life.

As disciples of Jesus Christ, our primarily focus is Him. As we invest more and more time with Him, we naturally find ourselves speaking about Him or his Domain or his Spirit. We become more and more attuned to his ways and can’t shut up if we tried. We want everyone to know Him and make Him known to others.

Whether we praise him in church services, through our work, or in our relationship with others, Christ-centered worship is simply recognizing God in the situation you are in and giving him the glory He deserves. When He is the center of every aspect of our life, then our life becomes a living sacrifice of worship to Him (Romans 12:1).

We worship Him as we pursue His Truth. We worship Him as we share our testimony with others. We worship Him as we surrender our lives to Him in service for others. As He matures us, we worship Him as His witness before others. Whatever we do in His Will, wherever we do it, and whenever we do it, we do so for His glory. This is our outer expression of the treasury in our inner heart toward Him. This is worship.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

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

 

 

 

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 and blessed to do today?

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

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