Month: February 2013

Devotions for 2/28/13

For those of you who signed up to receive a copy of our new devotional material (As a result of the message Crave) for FBC these blog post will cover the days between now and when you receive your printed material.  Please note, the info below is not original with me but comes from that devotional material. Also I will have to delete the previous devotionals,  when I post this one for I can only have one posted at a time. (Again because this material is not original with me) That said, here we go…

OTDOct2012 for Feb 28

Advertisements

Questions that Need Answering

crystal_vision

Vision is a tricky thing.

Some think they have a vision because they have “mission”, “purpose”, and “vision” statements.

Statements are good and are needed as corner stones for what you are trying to do…

but

they do not give a picture of what your organization is headed toward, a picture of what you want it to look like in the future.

To cast a vision, (to paint a picture of your vision)  is really not something that can done in just a few words.  The answer to the question of “what are we trying to do?” can be done in just a few words… but what it looks like takes a bit more explanation. For it is has to be sketched, tempered and painted.

And that takes time.

So… Here are some questions your vision must answer.

What is the vision?

What will it accomplish? What problem does it fix?

What will things look like? How is that different than now?

Is what you are doing now match what you say your vision is?

Why is this important to give my life too? Why should I (or people) “sign up” for this vision?

I was indirectly challenged yesterday to think about these things in a meeting I was in.  And even though I walked away from that meeting not really knowing what the vision was for that particular organization, it was challenging to me in regards to the ministry at Farmington Baptist.  I definitely do not want the people that go there to not fully understand what we are trying to accomplish.  I do not want them to walk away wondering what our vision really is.

We must continually communicate the vision, answering the questions above as often as we can.

As for the organization (or church) you are with.  The same task sits at your doorstep whether you want it to or not.

Devotions for 2/27/13

For those of you who signed up to receive a copy of our new devotional material (As a result of the message Crave) for FBC these blog post will cover the days between now and when you receive your printed material.  Please note, the info below is not original with me but comes from that devotional material. Also I will have to delete the previous devotionals,  when I post this one for I can only have one posted at a time. (Again because this material is not original with me) That said, here we go…

“being restored”

Read Luke 22:24-34

say what? – What do I see?

so what? – What does it mean?

now what? – How does it apply to me?

then what? – What do I do?

In today’s reading, Jesus gives some encouraging words to us about our sin. Did you notice them? It is also important to keep this truth in mind when those around us fail. It is the reality that when we fail and turn back to God, He will restore us to usefulness in His service. Jesus had a conversation with Peter in the upper room. In it He warned Peter that he would fail. He wanted Peter to know ahead of time that, while he was going to fail, he would also turn back and useful service would be waiting. This is even more amazing because Christ told Peter this before he denied Him. How those words must have encouraged him when he did fail. He learned that God is the God of second chances. We need these words of encouragement today. In reality, we will all fail at times, and we must be assured that when we confess sin and turn back to God, He will forgive us and make us useful in ministry again. Peter failed miserably, but God desired to use him. His failure did not mean his service for God was over. Let these words encourage your heart and use them to encourage others. God is waiting to use us again.

eXtra reading – Luke 22

The Possum Chronicles XXXI

Possum on the fence

Grissum – Well… I’m tired of living out doors, hanging from trees to sleep and scrounging for food.

Newsum – Me too

Dumsum – Me five

Knowsum rolls his eyes.

Grissum – So where do you think we should live?

Dumsum – Pick me Pick me Pick me!!!

Grissum – OK Dumsum where would you move too.

Dumsum – I Won!!!

Knowsum – Oh Brother!

Newsum – I really don’t like your brother and he still lives outdoors right?

Silence

Newsum – What?  What?

Grissum – Ok… here is what we are going to do… each of us is going to go looking for a place where we can live that is in doors and is big enough to store our food in.

Dumsum – and big enough to poop in

SLAP

Dumsum feels its sting

Knowsum – No… we don’t want to smell that where we live

Dumsum – well its not like we don’t do that now

SLAP SLAP

Dumsum with 3 paw prints on his face

Newsum – thats outside and everywhere we go, not indoors you fool.

Dumsum – Oh… yea… didn’t think of that…..

…my cheeks are really warm.

 

Sheep

sheep

A group of sheep got together one day and began talking about things and life including their sheepfold.  As they talked they decided they need to hire themselves a shepherd.

After all, the other flocks around them had one, so they thought they needed one too.

So the search was on.

Day after day week after week they looked and looked and looked until they found one. With raised tail and much joy they voted to hire the one they liked.

“Now your job” they told their new shepherd,  “is to make sure we are taken care of and that you are always available… if and when we need you.”

So the sheep chose where they would graze

and the shepherd followed

The sheep chose when they would go back in the fold

and the shepherd followed

They chose what in the fold needed fixing

and the shepherd made sure that happened

Over time the sheep remained the same, eating where they wanted, doing what they wanted…

with their eyes fixed on what they wanted….

never really understanding what they needed…

that’s why they hired the type of shepherd that worked for them…

instead of Jesus.

The Lazy Stewardship Manager

mfln3263l.jpg

Luke 16 tells a story of a rich man who had a manager working for him that had been very lazy.  Instead of making sure that the debts that were owed to him were repaid this manager did nothing to collect what the debtors owed his boss.

He would do the work to lend the money but would not do the work to collect the money when it was due.

Maybe it was because it is easier to lend than to get payment for a bill

Maybe it was because everyone is happy when you give them the money they requested but not so happy when the paying time comes around.

Maybe he was just that lazy… maybe he just gave money away without recording how much was lent thus wasting his master’s money.

Somewhere down the line his boss realized there was a problem. So, he said turn in your ledger, you’re finished with handling my money.  YOU’RE FIRED…

Fired

The manager, not being sure what to do but realizing he needed to do something, began to meet with all the people he had lent his boss’ money to.  Because of his laziness he had their names written down (or knew them by memory) but had not recorded how much each debtor owed.  So, he had to ask them how much they owed ( based on the honor system) then he worked out a deal for them to be able to pay back what they owed…

with money saving incentives.

After receiving payments for some (or all) of the debts, he brought his ledger book (now filled out) and the money he received to his boss and gave it to him.  His boss was trilled with the fact he had received payment for the debts and even though it wasn’t the full amount it was better than never seeing the money again.

So, he commended the manager on attempting to make things right and not burn a bridge on the way out.  He commended him for his prudence, wisdom, and shrewdness.

It seems that the shock of losing his job jump stared him out of his laziness and pushed him into a position where he moved to make things right.

The question the text leaves us with, is why doesn’t the “sons of light” respond in the same way when faced with an issue?

Maybe its because they would rather keep up appearances by saying they’ve been treated unjustly.  Which is dishonest way to live.

If people who do not profess to follow Christ change when presented with a moral issue they need to correct and go to great lengths to make it right with the person or persons they have wronged… why shouldn’t the “sons of light” do the same thing?

Or even be better at it?

Maybe it is time for “the sons of light” to admit they are wrong too and do something to make it up to the people that have been wronged…

Instead of spending all their time hiding the issue they need to deal with,  the first reaction should be trying to find ways to make it right.

For that is shrewd, prudent and wise.

What is your first reaction when you are approached with something you have done wrong?

Is it cover up or I’ve got to find a way to make this right.

That is the challenge I got out of our devotions for today from Luke 16:1-13.  When in the wrong, we must accept it and deal with it shrewdly to make it right.

Anything else is dishonest.