Patience

Time is On Your Side

“Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!” – Romans 11:23 Today we continue exploring God’s solutions. I want us to consider that His solutions are suitable for all of the world’s problems. There are many reasons they’re good, but one of the main reasons is that time is always on God’s side. Time is on your side too when you’re doing life with Him! There are seasons when it doesn’t feel that way, perhaps as we get older, or a well-thought-out plan becomes out of order. We all must face difficult changes. But when you serve and do life with God, time is on your side. Speaking of time, we all like to save time, don’t we? That’s why I love frozen Neapolitan pizzas. I may buy ten, put them in the freezer, and

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Three Keys to Becoming a Servant Leader

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” – Proverbs 3:5,6 As we wrap up our discussion about what it means to love our enemies and bring unity to our workplaces, I want to offer three practical tips that will help you to be a conduit of peace from the inside out. You see, becoming a servant leader is not a matter of trying harder, it’s a matter of the heart. The more you trust the Lord with your life and the more assuredly you believe that serving others is His best plan for you, the more naturally peace and goodness will flow from you. That said, here are a few things to remember: First of all, be patient. Intentionally practice patience and quit hurrying through your life. Instead

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You are a Leader!

“Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith.” – Hebrews 13:7 Did you know that you are a leader? Regardless of whether or not leadership is implied in your title, if you are a Christian, you are called to lead. No matter where you are today and how insignificant you think your title is, because you are empowered by the Holy Spirit, you have influence! As we continue talking about our workplaces and how we handle professional relationships, my challenge to you is this: Don’t worry so much about the perfections or imperfections of your employer, but instead focus on transforming your organization’s culture one relationship at a time. Rather than trying to find a perfect boss or a workplace that’s known for being joyful and productive, work to cultivate the atmosphere you seek in

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Jesus was at Ease

“The apostles gathered around Jesus and reported to him all they had done and taught. Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, he said to them, ‘Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.’” – Mark 6:30,31 We talked about the power of intentional rest the other day, and how it may help us free our minds and find peace. Today, I want to give you a second challenge for the new year, one that I feel will significantly improve your quality of life — don’t hurry! You’ve undoubtedly heard me say it before, but you must “ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life,” as Dallas Willard, one of my religious heroes, puts it. Slowing down my pace has improved my quality of life and my capacity to be an effective Jesus follower significantly.

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What’s Your Battle?

“Sovereign Lord, my strong deliverer, you shield my head in the day of battle.” – Psalm 140:7 The late actor Robin Williams once paraphrased Plato in saying: “Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about, so be kind, always.” And as cliche as this expression sounds, I think it’s important to understand how true it is so that we allow it to shape our interactions with others. The reality is that life is hard, and humanity is struggling with all kinds of issues — some people are just better at hiding it. No one has it all together, and the mistaken belief that they do is what causes many of us to feel alone in our pain. Nevertheless, we’re not flawed because we’re going through stuff, and it’s important to give ourselves grace so we can heal and extend mercy to our fellow brothers and sisters. Nobody

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The Journey to Healing

“Then he said to him, ‘Rise and go; your faith has made you well.’” – Luke 17:19 In continuing our study of the story of the ten lepers who cried out to Jesus for healing, it’s interesting to note that He bid them embark on a journey in order to see their miracle manifest. Though He often touched someone — or even spoke a word — and restoration happened immediately, this time it was different. Rather than instantaneously changing their circumstances, He instructed them to go and show themselves to the priest, who happened to be in Jerusalem. Since they were near Samaria at the time, it would have been a three or four day walk from where they were to get to the temple. And while they could have come up with any number of reasons why they shouldn’t make the trip, they started moving with the faith that

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Keep Your Pole in the Water

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” – Galatians 6:9 As a kid, I spent a lot of time fishing. This wasn’t always because I wanted to, but it so happens that it was one of my dad’s favorite activities, so we were out on the boat a lot. Sometimes my Grandpa Schuller got in on the action, and the three of us would spend hours chewing the fat and waiting for the fish to bite. Of course, being a child, those stretches often felt interminable, and sometimes it seemed as if there just weren’t any more creatures in the sea. However, if we sat there long enough, inevitably there would be a bite on someone’s line, and the excitement in that moment made the long process worthwhile. Like anything in life, a

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The Wisdom in God’s Warning

“At the end of seven days the word of the Lord came to me: ‘Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me.’” – Ezekiel 3:16,17 Over and over again in the Old Testament, we see the Lord warning His people. Though they were chosen and set apart by Him to be a living representation of His goodness, they habitually fell into sin and wickedness. This was especially true in the time of the prophet Ezekiel. Despite knowing right from wrong, the Jews in his day were partaking in paganism and idolatry that involved such gross practices as prostitution, child sacrifice, and other rituals. Seeing their blatant disregard for His ways, God could have punished them then and there. However, He chose to send a messenger to preach repentance instead. So patient and

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God Doesn’t Act in Haste

“The men turned away and went toward Sodom, but Abraham remained standing before the Lord. Then Abraham approached him and said: ‘Will you sweep away the righteous with the wicked? What if there are fifty righteous people in the city? Will you really sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people in it?’” – Genesis 18:22-24 For the past two days, we’ve looked at the events that transpired when God visited Abraham at his tent in Genesis 18. As we saw, the nomad went out of his way to welcome the Lord, and his generous hospitality remains a source of inspiration for us as we make the Holy Spirit at home in our lives today. However, something else happened during this interesting encounter, and it came in the form of a warning. The Almighty told His covenant-bearer that He was considering destroying

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Waiting vs. Grinding

“Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains.” – James 5:7 My dad taught me to surf when I was a teenager, and though I don’t do it very often and I’m not terribly good at it, I really enjoy it when I go. Interestingly, something a lot of people don’t know about surfing is that it requires a good deal of patience, because there are extended periods of waiting involved. When you first get in the water, you paddle like crazy to get out far enough to catch a set (which is a series of waves), and then you kind of just hang around and keep your eyes on the horizon until they swell. Once they gain momentum, you stand up and you either wipe out

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