Culture, Bible, Jesus

James 1:12

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

Do you truly want to know how strong your relationship with God is?

You will discover the answer in hindsight when you have gone through a serious trial which tests your belief.

Most recently, the world experienced the Covid pandemic. How well did you manage the crisis? Were you internally at peace or frantically worried through the process?

As I write this, I have a friend who is dealing with the death of a mate, another one with the loss of a job, and another who is currently battling through a major health issue. Each will discover through the process how real their faith is compared to where they think it is.

Over the years, I have come to better understand myself and others as we face the calamities and chaos that life throws our way. For example, during the pandemic those who allow the cultural noise to influence their beliefs had the most difficulty dealing with the crisis. Yet those who had a close relationship with our Lord calmly walked through the valley of death knowing whether they lived or died, they were in good hands.

Likewise, when mentoring others, I first try to understand their worldview before developing a directional process. My initial attempt is to determine the central core of one’s current beliefs. From there, we can point them to the target steps they need to pursue in their walk with the Triune God.

Though most Christians have a belief in God, their relationship with HIM begins from a cultural perspective. All they know about God is the result of the world around them. The more secular the culture, the more distorted is their view. As they mature in the faith, they begin to acquire Scriptural knowledge directly from the Bible. Not being properly educated in theological discourse, most of us begin to interpret the Book from a current cultural perspective instead of a historical, chronological basis. The result is again a distorted view of God and reality. However, as a serious disciple of HIS, the more time invested in studying Scripture, in prayer, and service toward others, the more our faith and trust in the living God becomes deeper and stronger. We become more aware of HIS work in us and around us.

In my opinion, the biggest challenge most Christian’s face today is being married to the culture or to the Bible rather than engaged to Jesus Christ. When Jesus becomes our central core and reference point in everything we do, then reality more quickly becomes solid footing. The Truth becomes more recognizable and livable. The outcome is a greater experience of God’s Spiritual fruit in our lives.

The love, joy, and peace described throughout the Bible becomes the divine nature living in you and being expressed out from you. You begin to truly live out your life as an image bearer of God Almighty. You become a living billboard for God’s Kingdom. God touches the lives of others through your walk with HIM.

Bottom-line: let Jesus be the central core of your belief system built upon Biblical Scripture and influentially tested against the culture. As a result, you will receive your crown of life and introduce others to our Lord and King. A win-win for all parties.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & Author of e-Books 

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Culture Trap

Romans 12:2

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Today’s culture is more influential than ever before. The power of the media, internet, and technology has multiplied the number of influences in our lives. One hundred years ago, children were raised by parents, grandparents, and their siblings. The negative influences were more easily pushed away and hidden from children. As the child grew, they were slowly exposed to the vices that captured a person’s soul.

Now children are bombarded with the same temptations as the adults but without the defensive capacity to manage. If adults have very little strength to push back on the negative advertisements of culture, what can we expect from our children?

Today’s culture is the elephant in the room. We walk, talk, and move about marveling and taking for granted the accomplishments of industry, business, medicine, and education. Yet, at the same time we realize there is a swaying pressure so slightly pulling us toward a way of life which looks glamorous on the outside yet we know deep inside us the emptiness will never be satisfied by the glittering promises of these false prophets.

The cultural machine never stops, slows down, nor rests. Every minute, the machine is bombarding everyone within its sight with an influential message which is design to trap oneself within its grip. If you believe the culture is your friend and wants what is best for you, you have been deceived into its trap of enslavement. Thinking you are free; you have become a prisoner of others manipulating you for their personal gain; an unknowing pawn in someone else’s game board.

Yet as parents and young adults knowing better but struggling to fine oneself through this maze of visual stimulation, vocal noise, and an overwhelming burden of constant choices, where does one go for real, solid answers?

The Bible, a collection of short stories, biographies, letters, and essays written over a 3,500-year period by various authors with a transparent collected theme from beginning to end contains more lessons of human success and failures for the student to grow in knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of how life works.

When one begins to read and learn more about God’s character between the pages, the solid values HE emphasizes for relationships, finance, business, government, etc., and the timeless wisdom repeatedly proven through faithful actions throughout history in many lives, maybe there is something our children and young adults can learn to help them lead a more abundant life than the world’s culture offers?

Yet the best advertisement is a walking billboard of what is in the Bible. Sadly, there are not many highly visible people that our children witness as role models. Maybe each of us needs to form a committee of one and become that person.

One man many years ago, when he intentionally decided he needed a mentor to help steer him through the cultural traps, he wanted the best available person. His choice? Jesus Christ.

In hindsight, one of his best decisions. How about 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 2013-2020 Abbaco LLC | All Rights Reserved

Christian Culture is Not the Kingdom of God

Romans 14:17
For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.ESV.

 

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A debate among the early church saints about whether or not it is OK to eat unclean food led the apostle Paul to write in a letter which we now classify as the fourteen chapter in the Book of Romans.  The issue included whether or not it is more spiritual to be a vegetarian or not. Paul’s conclusion emphasize that the fruit of God’s Kingdom is not food and drink but righteousness, peace, and joy.

For most of us who have never been exposed to God’s Kingdom, maybe we should hold off judgment until we truly experience the real thing. The closest we may have come would most likely be a Sunday church service among other Christians. Yet even there God’s Kingdom may not be fully operating. Instead we witness a culture where everyone speaks and acts in a Camelot fashion. So where do we go to discover the real McCoy?

The Kingdom of God is HIS reign. Wherever people allow God to be the center of their lives; where HE is served first within all relationships and transactions; where HE is the final judge on all matters; where our hearts and minds and souls yield to HIS Word, HIS priorities, and HIS values; not as we determine but as it is.

Reality composes of knowing HIM. When we gain knowledge of HIS ways, we begin to see HIS Spirit at work in our lives and the lives of others; we begin to experience life the way HE intended to be. As we learn to pray and ask and listen, we begin to see our requests actualized. Dumbfounded but in wonder, we become more and more amazed at HIS ability to bring events into reality.

So where do we find the real McCoy?

Wherever HIS people live, breathe, and serve under the authority of their King Jesus, HE is there. And not only is HE present, but the fruit of the Spirit grows. Like a tree that blooms in the spring time, the impact of HIS Kingdom becomes noticeably alive. It could be in a local church service, or a family gathering, or even in the marketplace at work. What is recognized are the manifestations of God’s Spirit sprouting from the hearts, minds, and souls of people who yield themselves to their King.  That is where you will find His Kingdom.

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