Tag Archives: fulfilling your calling

Paralysis Through Analysis

One of the things that I see so many of us run into is paralysis through analysis. What I mean by that is that we feel like we need more information in order to act. When we don’t feel like we have all the information we need, we stall or make excuses as to why we can’t do what we need to. Because we live in the Information Age, we know there is always more information that we can acquire in order to make the best decision. The problem is that our need for information has replaced our ability to act in faith.

We all grew up hearing the words, “Ready. Set. Go.” As a people of faith, I believe God often is asking us to skip those first two words and simply go. Our comfort is in the getting ready and getting set, but we’ve learned to live in those areas without going. The truth is that we will never feel like we’re ready when we are acting in faith. To feel like we need more information, skills or tools means we are trying to do it in our own power and not in God’s. We’ve got to learn to let go of those security blankets and trust that we already have what we just need to “Go”,

Colossians 2:6 says, “My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you’ve been given” (MSG). It’s time for you and I to quit staying where we are trying to get ready. We need to step out with what we’ve been given and let God provide what we lack. Remember God doesn’t always call the most equipped people, but He does equip those He calls. It’s time to move forward with what you have. Break out of the paralysis through analysis, step out in faith and trust God to step in. That’s what faith is all about.

Photo by Braden Collum on Unsplash

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Jump Out Of The Boat

To me, one of the most interesting decisions anyone made in the Bible came from Peter and the disciples in John 21:3. Peter told the disciples, “‘I’m going fishing.’ And they all replied, ‘We’ll go with you.’ So they went out and fished through the night, but caught nothing” (TPT). Three years earlier, Jesus had called Peter away from the fishing boats to fish for men instead. For three years, they watched Jesus perform miracle after miracle. Then they saw Jesus crucified and resurrected. He wanted them to meet Him in Galilee, yet when they arrived, they went back to their old jobs.

I don’t know how long it was after they returned to Galilee before they went fishing, but it’s very indicative of what we all do. God tells us to wait, we wait, He doesn’t show up during our time table and we do something else. We reason, “Maybe we missed God.” Instead of moving forward, we go backwards to what’s familiar to us. We pick up our old nets and step away from our calling. Just like this night of fishing for the disciples, it’s unproductive and unsatisfying. Once you’ve had a taste of your calling, it’s hard to be fulfilled by anything else. Yet Jesus doesn’t leave us there. He chases after us like the lost sheep and redirects us.

I love in this story how when Jesus tells them to cast on the other side and the nets fill with fish, Peter doesn’t wait to bring them in. He jumps out of the boat and swims to shore. I believe that’s what God is asking each us to do. It’s time we jump out of the boat of the familiar and moved toward Jesus. It may be uncharted waters for you, but the fulfillment you seek is to be using the gifts He’s given you in the calling He’s placed on your life. If you’re in the sea of the familiar right now, jump out of the boat and swim to where God is calling you.

Photo by Brooklyn Morgan on Unsplash

5 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Critic’s Math

Several years ago I attended a conference for ministers. One of the speakers was Jon Acuff, and he spoke on critic’s math. The way critics math works is 1 insult + 1,000 complements = 1 insult. We can be praised by everyone for our work, but if one person didn’t like it, we allow that one negative comment to erase all the positive feedback we’ve received. It can be like we never even heard the compliments because our mind spends all its time focusing on the one negative comment rather than our feedback as a whole. Critic’s math is a dangerous thing for us to fall into.

An example is in the Book of Esther. Haman was the King’s prime minister. He had been put in such a high position, that the king declared everyone should bow to him as he passed by. Everyone bowed down except one. Mordecai refused. In the fifth chapter, Esther had prepared a banquet for he and the king. When he left, everyone bowed except Mordecai. In verses 12-13, he told his wife and friends, “What is more, Queen Esther gave a banquet for no one but the king and me, and we are invited back tomorrow. But none of this means a thing to me as long as I see that Jew Mordecai sitting at the entrance of the palace” (GNT). He allowed critic’s math to cloud his thinking, and it ultimately cost him everything.

You and I need to accept that we can’t please everyone, and that pleasing people is not our goal. Pleasing God is. Ecclesiastes 7:10 warns, “Don’t pay attention to everything people say.” When you receive negative feedback, take it constructively, but don’t give it so much weight that it distracts you from what God has called you to. What He has to say is far more important than what any person has to say. Keep focusing on what God wants to do in your life and through you, and don’t let one person’s negativity keep you from reaching your potential or from finishing your race.

Photo by Tim Gouw on Unsplash

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Being Great

In sports, there are always arguments over who is the greatest of all time. In football, the question is if Tom Brady is greater than Joe Montana. In basketball, it’s if LeBron James is greater than Michael Jordan. There’s even debate over who the single greatest sports figure is across all sports. People will always have opinions and will argue over who the greatest is when it comes to sports or just about anything really. I believe it’s because God put something in us that wants to be great and fights against mediocrity.

Even the disciples argued over who was the greatest. Luke 9:46 says, “An argument broke out among the disciples as to which one of them was the greatest” (GNT). I can hear their arguments now. John probably said, “I’m the greatest because He loves me most.” Peter argued, “But I walked on water!” What’s funny is you don’t hear Jesus rebuke them for wanting to be great. Instead, He says, “For the one who is least among all of you [that is, the one who is genuinely humble–the one with a realistic self-view]– he is the one who is [truly] great” (AMP).

Jesus’ desire is that each of us would be great, and He told us how. In God’s Kingdom, the greatest isn’t the person who wins the most souls, heals the most people, has the most famous ministry or goes to third world countries. To be great is to be humble and to serve others. It’s understanding who we are on Christ and that we are only great through Him. He is the potter and we are the clay. If you want to be great, then let Him do what He wants with your life. Your greatest potential lies in being who He created you to be.

Photo by Natalie Pedigo on Unsplash

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Journey Of Success


As you know, David was told by God that he could not build the temple. God had told him that his son Solomon would build it. In II Chronicles 22:5, David recognized that his son Solomon was young and inexperienced. He then decided to make preparations for building the temple. He ordered everything that Solomon would need in order to build the temple. Even though Solomon had everything he needed to be successful, it was up to him to do something with all the material if he was going to build successfully.

Success doesn’t lie in having the things God gives us, it lies in doing something with them. In Matthew 25:14-30, we read the Parable of Talents. Jesus told the story of three men who had been given bags of silver from their master according to their abilities. Two of the servants took that material and invested it while one hid it. When the master returned, it was the ones who did something with the material who were considered successful, not the one who let it sit.

I Corinthians 12:7 says, “A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other” (NLT). God has given each of us the materials to be successful just like David did for Solomon and the master did for his servants. The question is, are you going to let the materials sit there or are you going to do something with them? You can’t let the fear of being unsuccessful to prevent you from doing anything. If you do nothing with what God has given you, you’re no better than the man ho buried his bag of silver.

If God has given you a dream, quit often it’s as big as the task given to Solomon to build the temple. You may look at yourself and think you’re too inexperienced to do what God called you to. If you read the Bible, the greatest heroes of faith were the ones who didn’t let their inexperience keep them from their calling. They trusted God to do His part, so they did theirs. It’s up to each of us to take the gifts God has given us and put them to use. The greatest successes in life start with the smallest of steps. What can you do today to get started on your journey of success?

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Recovering Lost Dreams

When I was in high school, I felt like God called me to write. I interpreted that calling as God calling me to write a book. For years I waited for an agent to call me and to give me the opportunity to write a book. I wrote down some great ideas for books and even wrote outlines for them. Those outlines sat in a drawer collecting dust through the years while I waited. Finally, when I was in my mid-thirties, I asked God why I hadn’t been given the opportunity to write a book yet. He responded, “Why haven’t you done anything to make that happen?”

God gives each of us great dreams. Most of us, like myself, sit and wait expecting the dream to fulfill itself. Sadly many people go to their graves with unfulfilled dreams because they never did anything to accomplish that dream. God is able to accomplish the dream He gave you if you’re willing to put in the work. Jesus said, “If you’re faithful in the little things, I will make you faithful over many things.” We have to show Him we are willing to do the groundwork necessary to fulfill the dreams He gives us.

In Joshua 18, the Israelites had subdued the Promised Land, but hadn’t taken possession of it. Generations before, God had given Abraham the dream of having a nation with their own special land. Even though they had defeated those living in the land, the dream was still unfulfilled. In verse 3, Joshua spoke to the Israelites and said, “How long will you put off going to take the land, which the Lord, the God of your fathers, has given you?” (ESV) He was saying, “Why aren’t you doing anything to fulfill the dream?” They then went through the land, mapping it out, and dividing it up into sections so each tribe would receive their promise and fulfill the dream. 

God required them to get off their hands and do something to fulfill their dream. They had to get courage to leave their prison of Egypt. They had to walk through walls of water and wander in a desert for a while. After all of that, they had to go in and fight for their dream. It wasn’t handed to them. After winning the battles, they still had to carve it out and allot it so that each person could receive the promise of the dream that had been given so long ago.

I can tell you that I still don’t have a book deal and that’s ok. I’m doing the work necessary for God to do His part. I’m closer than I was all of those years of doing nothing. I’m being faithful in the little things first while I wait for God to make me faithful over many. What about you? What dream has God given you that is sitting in a drawer somewhere collecting dust? It’s time to open the drawer, to dust it off and to start doing the little things necessary to bring it about. For me, it was starting this blog. For you, it might be taking a class, going to a seminar, emailing someone in that field about how they started or letting others know you’re interested in doing it. They’ll help to keep you accountable.

When you do your part, God will do His. It may not happen immediately, but it will happen. Get off your hands, as the Message Bible puts it, and take that first step.

2 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

Iron Sharpening Iron

And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)

You use steel to sharpen steel, and one friend sharpens another.
Proverbs 27:17 (MSG)

If you are having trouble viewing this video, click here.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized