Thankful Heart

I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;
    before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
    and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
    for you have exalted above all things
    your name and your word.[a]
On the day I called, you answered me;
    my strength of soul you increased.[b]

All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O Lord,
    for they have heard the words of your mouth,
and they shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
    for great is the glory of the Lord.
For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly,
    but the haughty he knows from afar.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
    you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
    and your right hand delivers me.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
    your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
    Do not forsake the work of your hands.

Psalm 138: 1-8 (ESV)

A thankful heart is the expressive attitude of a follower of Jesus Christ. When one comes to understand who HE IS and what HE has done, and what HE plans to accomplish with you and me, one can only drop to their knees with a grateful heart and thank HIM.

A thankful heart is the byproduct of gratitude which also leads to a more outgoing concern for the needs of others; and the heartfelt compassion and generosity are also balanced with truth and justice.

A thankful heart acknowledges God has given you and me boundaries to operate with for our good and the good of others. Instead of ruling over others, we serve them. Instead of showering others with empty rhetoric and fortitude, the thankful heart understands the value of the individual human spirit facing challenges and encourages them to grow and mature.

A thankful heart is not swayed by pompous living and make-believe-utopias, but by the simple, natural understanding of human needs and the marvelous creation given to us to explore and experience.

A thankful heart bestows blessings on others without expectation of any returns.

A thankful heart knows when to lead and when to follow; and who not to follow.

A thankful heart loves to share their blessings with others.

A thankful heart sees the best in others.

A thankful heart also sees the lies, hypocrisies, and false impressions of others and avoids their delusional imprisonments.

A thankful heart is a repentant soul understanding their need for a Savior.

These are just a few of the thoughts that came across my mind this morning. For those who want to bathe their mind with more thankful thoughts, click on the links below to read past blogs:

Thanksgiving is All I Have

Thankfulness is Repentance in Action

Thank You Lord

Thank You Jesus Christ


Gratitude 101

Today I Get To…

PS: May You Have a Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving.

Rooting For You in Christ!

Dr. Mike

Encourager & 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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God, Family, Character

“You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours.” Psalms 128:2

life liberty 1

Thanksgiving is one of the national holidays that I supremely enjoy. A time to give thanks to our Awesome Benefactor for the bountifulness of this great country.

To reflect on this unique country and its history makes one realize how blessed as a nation we truly are. From the pilgrims first settlement, to my parents immigrating after World War II, to the illegal aliens willing to risk their own lives to come to this country, makes one realize how special this nation truly has become. Yet we also cry inside as we watch this country throw out the baby with the bath water.

When you read the writings of many early American historians, you note at least three common characteristics most often expressed that made this country great: God, Family, and Character. This God of our early history wasn’t an idealistic idea, but a Providential Ruler. Thomas Jefferson, a deist, was even inspired to acknowledge that America’s independence from England was a right bestowed by this Creator when he framed the Declaration of Independence. This God was allowed to be involved in early governmental affairs. Today however, we disavow His involvement in public affairs and the price paid is becoming more costly each year.

In the early years of American life, family was the backbone of community success. Families would need labor to operate farms and therefore having one dozen children was not unusual but a necessity to assist with the chores. Families learned to depend on each other for survival and entertainment. Children learned practical survival skills that included hunting, farming, and Biblical common sense. Today, we don’t depend on family for such necessities of life. As a result the nuclear family is disappearing and the favorable fruit it produced is likewise dying. Instead of learning how to work-out problems between two people, we now exit the situation. We have placed our individual needs before others. Wonder why today’s younger generation has been labeled as the most narcissistic generation since the keeping of records?

Of course, it took work and sacrifice to build America into the economic powerhouse under the Providential Benefactor’s blessings within an idealistic land and climate. It wasn’t about seeking easy street. It was about discipline, hard work, sacrifice, and willing to risk everything for a better life. Why is it that families coming into this country with nothing leave an estate for their children that rivals wealthy people around the world? They know the sacrifice and hard work that is required to live a dream. Today we have raised a generation where many want the American dream, but lack the character to make it happen.

Jesus came so we may participate with Him in His new creation. A life of abundance. A life that is a transformation from the Old Human to a New Human. That new Human involves the development of godly character. The same character that God employs in His eternal travels through the universe. His goal is for you and I to fully realize what it means to be human in this life and the life to come. Apart from Him though, it cannot be done. So when you accept His authority in your life, allow His Spirit to lead you and influence you in your decisions and choices, you participate in a journey of transformation in Christ that leads to an enjoyable life now and for eternity.

That is why I am truly Thankful this time of year. It always reminds me that no matter what is going on around, God is Good. Family is Good. Godly Character is Good. And I enjoy the Good in Life.

May you have a blessed Thanksgiving 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

Learn. Integrate. Grow.


Build Strengths, Compliment Weaknesses

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10 ESV

strengths 5

Sometimes when performance doesn’t measure up to expectations, people have the tendency to focus on fixing their weaknesses rather than buildup one’s strengths.  Good coaches though help you to operate around your strengths and compliment your weaknesses.

We see this in sports. Take football as an example. We see how this year’s Cleveland Brown’s offensive coordinator has built a system around their quarterback’s strength.  The quarterback, Brian Hoyer’s strength is the mid-to-long ball arena. Therefore, the Cleveland team plays a horizontal game where Brian is constantly throwing down field rather than short routes. The short game is his weakness. The long game is his strength. Since implementing this strategy, Mr. Hoyer leads all quarterbacks in performance ratings for long throws down field. As a result, the Cleveland Brown’s are in serious contention for a playoff spot when no one gave them a chance in the beginning of the year.

The same is true in business. Almost every single successful business is built around the entrepreneur’s strengths. When the business owner starts to deviate away from their core strengths is typically when the business starts to falter. The process is usually slow because the owner is trying to save money by doing it herself.  The problem is it takes him twice as long to complete the job than someone else whose strength is a perfect match. We see this when a business is built on the sales skills of an owner. When he also tries to keep the company books he is travelling outside his area of expertise. Yes he may save a few dollars in the short term, but in the long term he is losing opportunities to sell which is how the company became successful in the first place.

This is also true in leadership. Abraham Lincoln is a good example of someone who understood this principle. When he was elected President. he surrounded himself with the best people knowledgeable in their field of specialty.  His cabinet consisted of “political enemies” and “self-seeking” businessmen.  He knew his strength was his gift of discernment and communications. Therefore, he exercised his primary strengths and complimented his weaknesses through the people around him. Most novice leaders surround themselves with like-minded people. President Lincoln was not a novice. He accepted the confrontations and egos knowing it provided him with the best support to effectively lead the country.

As disciples, we likewise need to learn to build our lives on our primary strengths. That means the foundation of Jesus Christ is firmly planted in our life. That we know His Word and follow His Spirit enthusiastically. We accept the natural gifts that God has bestowed upon us and find ways to express them for God’s glory and the sake of others. We realize our shortcomings and surround ourselves with people and boundaries that compliment us in our journey through life. As we lean on our primary Strength, the Triune God, we learn to integrate and grow God’s Kingdom through our work, family, and other pursuits.

Life in Christ is most enjoyable when our God-given strengths work together with others for advancing His plans. We experience what being fully human was originally intended when God created humankind. When God’s Spirit merges with our souls, God’s new creation becomes a reality in our world today: Build Strengths, Compliment Weaknesses. A proven principle that works!

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

Learn. Integrate. Grow.