Find a Mentor

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.” Psalm 32:8 ESV

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In a conversation with several business men and women, the question was asked “what is the one thing you would do differently if you could relive life over again in the business world?”   My reply startled some of the them and made others quickly reevaluate their situation. For my answer was simple; “to follow the Holy Spirit’s lead in all my business undertakings.”

Even though I surrendered to Lord Jesus at 17 years of age, my understanding of how business, ministry, and faith integrated was almost non-existent.  I did not understand how my “business life” could be a ministry that glorifies God and serves others for the common good. At the time church pastors were not teaching about it and there were very few resources that addressed the idea. It has taken many years, much prayer, and sacrificial work searching to discover how this integration works. I often consider that if I had a mentor, how different things might have been.

That is why I now encourage men and women today to diligently seek-out spiritual business mentors willing to coach them on how to fully integrate all aspects of life that leads to the most adventurous journey rooted in Jesus Christ. Ask your pastor to refer someone. Ask someone in your congregation that you know is both success in business and has a heart for God. There are many who talk about faith in business, but there are few in comparison who “walk the talk.”

When you find that mentor, you will find an advisor and a spiritual guide who will assist you through the many challenges and opportunities that will come before you. They are not to make your decisions for you. They are there as a sounding board because they have already gone through the battlefield of spiritual warfare in the marketplace. You will find a mentor will increase your learning curve and move you faster toward achieving your dreams while staying true to God’s purpose for your 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

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Stop It!

“O Lord, do not your eyes look for truth? You have struck them down, but they felt no anguish; you have consumed them, but they refused to take correction. They have made their faces harder than rock; they have refused to repent.” Jeremiah 5:3 ESV.

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Mr. Bob Newhart is a standup comedian and actor noted for his deadpan delivery. One memorable,  humorous routine involved him playing a psychologist providing services for $5 a session. His one-line response after listening to the patient’s problem was always the same: “stop it.” No matter the problem, the solution was simply for you to stop doing it. A simple reply that in many ways is funny because we humans like to make our personal problems seem larger and more difficult than the challenges of others.

Yet Bob Newhart’s response is actually the best advice we can implement. (This of course does not apply to conditions caused by physical or mental structural damages.) When the problem is caused by harmful behavioral or attitudinal responses, something needs to change. As long as we continue to respond in the same routine fashion, how do we realistically expect the results to be any different?

The challenging circumstances we face each day is the opportunity to lean more on the Triune God. As we lean more on God, we witness his grace in action. The process slowly changes our heart as we develop a trust walk with the Almighty. This change of heart the Bible denotes as repentance. It is changing how we think and respond to the world around us. Instead of centering the pain on our shoulders, or throwing the pain in the face of others, we learn to give the pain over to Jesus who helps carry us through the ordeal via the Holy Spirit.

So the next time to find yourself experiencing a negative outcome, review the process that got you there, and ask God for the strength to change it. In other words, stop responding in your old way and ask God to show you how you can respond differently. Ask Him for wisdom. Ask Him for more love and patience. Ask Him for whatever you need. Like a caring Father, He will gladly provide you with the help you need. Otherwise, if you don’t change, who are you going to become?

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

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

Hope

” For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.” Romans 15:4 ESV

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When times get challenging, when you are not sure which way to go, and you feel alone and misunderstood, praise God. You have come to the crossroads of hope.

Without pain, suffering, and misfortune, hope would only be a word. An illusion for the helpless. A battle cry for the defeated. Yet Paul writes that hope is the means of surviving the battlefields of life.

He points us to read Scriptures for encouragement. To read how God intervenes in the lives of other believers. To discover the precepts and principles when applied opens the doors of opportunity. For when we place our hope in Him, we discover the true meaning of love and faith.

He is faithful and demonstrates how every day. He also expresses love deeper than any person you and I will ever meet. When we place our hope in him, he opens his heart with us. He shares his abundance with us. He also disciplines us for our good. His behavior is a byproduct of his inherent love and faithfulness.

So when times get tough, don’t hope in solutions, money, or people. Instead, place your hope in him. To know him is more than knowing his hands and feet that provide for us. To hope in him is to know him; to know him is to hope in him. In Christ we have real, true hope (Hebrews 3:6).

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
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

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

Head Butts

 

Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for? Matthew 16:25 (MSG)

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How many of us spend the majority of our life butting our head against the wall until the light goes on?

We invest our time, energy, and resources in pursuit of relationships, fame, and fortune only to discover afterwards an emptiness in our soul. Then we seek more of the same thinking it isn’t enough; only to discover that wasn’t it either. Than we may go the other extreme and forgo everything; again only to discover that didn’t fill the cup either.

In my short life-time I have witnessed myself, friends and associates believe the “I am master of my own ship” motto. We made decisions that looked appetizing in the beginning but the returns bit us hard in the end.

What we all had in common was a strong focus on “self.” Everything we went after was because we wanted it and nobody could change our mind. We deserved it. We were willing to work hard for it. We made it our destiny.

The problem was we were following the wrong leader: ourselves. It wasn’t until we surrendered our life to the King of Kings that we fully understood what that meant. In short, it is refreshing knowing that I have a boss that cares about me and leads me through green pastures and fruitful fields. However, when I reject his leadership, he lets me experience the growing pains of doing it myself. I for one have come to truly appreciate His ways and am tired of doing it my way.

When we surrender to the King and learn the joy of serving others with Him for the sake of others and for His Kingdom, the rewards are more than money, fame, and worldly relationships can every bring. Blessed and happy is the man/woman who walks with the King! They shall enjoy His abundance (Jn. 10:10).

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
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

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

Imitators of God

“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children.” Eph 5:1

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When you were a child and an adult asked you what did you want to be like when you grew up, how did you reply?

Did you say you wanted to be like your dad or mom? Or like your grandpa or grandma? Maybe you wanted to be like that sports star or rock star? Or maybe you were more mature than your peers and simply wanted to be yourself?

As children and even young adults we either intentionally or unintentionally look to imitate someone we want to be like.

In my life I had several mentors and role models who I patterned this life after. Most were a positive influence. Some not so. Yet the point is we mimic and learn from those we admire and associate with.

The same is true as disciples of Jesus. The more we study, walk with, and admire him, the more we imitate him. The more we imitate him, the closer our relationship becomes.

As he is one of three persons within the Triune God, the more we observe him, the more with see the Father who he represents. The more we see the Father and Son, the more closer we recognize the Holy Spirit. As we admire and worship the Triune God, the more we desire to imitate Him.

Though we are physically limited, he created us with certain attributes similar to His. So whatever we can grasp and understand, we can likewise intentionally imitate.

So I guess you can say that when I grow up I want to be more like my Heavenly Father, Son, and Spirit. How about you?

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
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

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

Sufficiency in Christ

“I (Jesus) can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is just, because I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me.” John 5:30 ESV

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Many of us either intentionally or wishfully want to be self-sufficient. We desire to depend on no one for anything. If we had our way, we would be self-fulfilled financially, relationally, and spiritually without relying on anyone but our self. To be financially, relationally, and spiritually secured without having to work-out the emotional and irrational issues between people, some would say, would be a relief. In fact, their conclusion is that this would be a wonderful world if we could just get what we want without all of life’s soap opera drama.

This leads me to our first parents. Some believe that Adam & Eve’s sin was the desire to be self-sufficient. Their desire was to be like God, dependent on no one but themselves. Hasn’t humanity been in the same mindset since?

How do you think God designed us to be? To be SELF-sufficient or GOD-sufficient? SELF-fulfilled or GOD-fulfilled? SELF-esteemed or GOD-esteemed? SELF-loved or GOD-loved?

If Jesus’ himself said that he could do nothing apart from his Father God, what about us?

Are we more capable than Jesus? I think not. Maybe it’s time to change our viewpoint and seek out how to live life from a Christ-centered perspective. Or is that just a little too radical for some of us?

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Founder & Executive Director
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

Encourage a Friend…Share Today’s Message!

Christian Crutches

“As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions.” Romans 41:1 ESV
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One of the most puzzling aspects of the Christian faith for unbelievers is the various denominations built around a specific interpretation of scripture. Somewhere I recently read that there are over 30,000 different denominations in the United States alone. These of course include non-denominational organizations which think of themselves not as one of the mainstream Christian bodies but really are a single-body denomination.

Whether these faith communities place unique emphasize on communion, baptism, prophecy, gospel message, healing, prosperity, etc., the vast majority truly believe that Jesus Christ is Savior and Lord. Therefore, according to Scripture, they are my brothers and sisters in the Lord. The challenge is they have a strong preference and opinion. In some circles, they follow the formula that to be a Christian requires Jesus plus “x”. The emphasis placed on the “x” factor separates them from others.

What they may not see is that this “x” factor is really a spiritual crutch that they currently need until the Holy Spirit completes its transformation within the Believer. Since this crutch helps them in their walk with the Lord, they sincerely believe everyone else should have the same crutch.

Most transformational processes take considerable time. Yet upon completion, one only then recognizes the crutch of the matter.(sorry for the pun).

In Jesus’ time on earth, he kept correcting the religious leaders of his day. They would emphasize the importance of the crutch while Jesus was healing the person so they wouldn’t need the crutch any longer. It is not a shame to have a crutch. It is simply a means that allows us to continue walking with Christ until we are healed in that area of life. Until that day, we aspire for unity in all essentials beliefs (Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior), encourage liberty in beliefs which are gray or uncertain (interpretation of scripture, baptism, end-times, etc), but exercise love in all beliefs.

Remember, we all use crutches. We all will walk with a limp into the fullness of the Kingdom of God. Therefore, let’s just recognize what is a crutch, continue to abide in Jesus Christ and allow God’s Spirit to transform the heart, mind, and soul for His glory and purpose, and mutually serve one another through the maturity growth process.

Crutch or no crutch, I for one am thankful that Jesus is the one we all have to answer too.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Executive Chair, Consultant, Encourager
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

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