Thursday, June 25, 2009

My Highest Priority...

This has been one of those weeks. You know, the kind that is filled with things that happen which were not on your daily planner or my to do list. Many of them important things and others just could not be avoided. .

These kinds of weeks can be very frustrating for me because I like to get things done. I admit that I am a driven person and I like to keep moving forward. Sometimes my highest priority becomes getting thing s done. So, today I came in ready to change the world. As I spent some time praying and following the Summer Bible Reading Plan that many at the Bridge are following, God reminded me of my Highest Priority.

Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.
(Mt 22:37-40).

Today, my highest priority is not to focus on things that make me look good or even advance the mission of this church to make it look good here and in the city. I am not to try to please people and get them to like me. I am not to focus on getting a lot of things checked off my to do list. My Highest Priority today is the same as it is every day: Loving God and Loving People...
Getting things done is important and necessary, but Loving God and Loving People must be the priority in all that I do.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Faith or Fear... Which Will it be Today?

This morning as I was in my time with God, I came across a passage that I can so relate to. Maybe this is an issue for you as well.

Then he (Jesus) got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Without warning, a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid? Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm. The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!” (Matthew 8:23-27).

The disciples had seen Jesus do so many amazing things and then when something happens that they were not anticipating they allow fear to take over their lives. I find myself doing the same thing several times in my day when something happens that I was not anticipating. It could be... unexpected phone call appointment with someone that does not go the way I was thinking

...a higher than expected bill unexpected response from a friend

...changes in our world

You name it, it can be almost anything that can cause me to respond in fear. Yet, I know that I can trust Jesus to take care of each and every moment of my life. He always has and always will. SO the big question for me today is: Fear or Faith: Which one will drive me as I face whatever comes my way today? I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Are you getting into it?

Yesterday we started a new teaching series "God I Gotta Question". We are dealing with some of the big questions that people have about the Christian faith for the next few weeks. The question for yesterday was "Can I Really Trust the Bible?" . (You can listen to the message or get the notes by clicking on this link.)

The Bible is, by far, the most unique book in all of human history. It was written over a period of 1,400 years, by over 40 different authors from very walk of life. It was written on three different continents in three different languages. Rulers and nations have tried to destroy it. Many have given their lives so that you and I can have access to it in a language that we can understand.

The Bible still remains the number one best seller each year. There are over 7 billion copies of the Bible in existence today. The United Bible Society distributed over 278,000,000 copies of all or portions of the Bible in 2007. It has been translated in to over 2,500 languages. Most of you reading this today have several different translations of the Bible in your homes.

For me, the big question for most of us not do I trust it or believe it, but am I getting into it and allowing God to speak to my life and change me? So, I simply ask: Are you getting into it today? If not , why not pick it up right now?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

My Top Five Percent...

I am away this week on a personal retreat for study, planning, prayer and reflection. It's always hard to force myself to stop and get away for these, but when I do, I am reminded that I must do it more often.

I am reading a book by Wayne Cordeiro tilted, "Leading on Empty". It's a great book about our need to slow down and take time to refill our tanks and renew our passion.

In one of the chapters, he made some interesting statements. He said that 85% of what we do could be done by almost anyone else. 10% of what we do could be done by someone else with a little bit of training and education. But, only 5% of what we do can be done only by us. Pretty humbling to think as about, isn't it?

I have been giving a lot of thought to these statements over the last couple of days and I believe that he is correct. His point is that we must make certain that we take care of the top 5% of our lives first, if we don't do it, no one else can and no one else will.

So,as I have spent some time thinking, here are my top 5% that I must take responsibility for each and every day... These must get by best time and not my left over time.

1. A growing and vibrant personal relationship with Christ.
2. A genuine, healthy and authentic relationship with my wife and children.
3. Leading a God-honoring, Christ-centered ministry.
4. Taking responsibility for a physically healthy body and a creative mind.
5. Taking time to enjoy life with family and friends.

So, what do you think? What is it that you are doing that only you can do? What are your Top Five Percent? I'd love to hear from you...