The fear of the Lord at work.


Daniel 6:23 I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, And steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, And His dominion shall endure to the end. 

Happy Saturday everyone! 

This week as prayer requests came into a chat group I’m a member of, a few of them were concerning work situations. 

We spend 8 hours of a day at work, relating and interacting with co-workers and clients. With that much time spent on a daily basis, stuff is bound to happen! Can I tell you!  There will be confrontations, disagreements and unfortunately there will be those who revert to hypercritical, manipulative and deceptive means to “better” their position. This leads to distrust and tense working environments. 

As Christians we are called to be different but not passive! Our faith must mean something and be what we act upon. Situations at work give the believer an opportunity to demonstrate that they work for the Lord and fear Him. The result is that they receive the wisdom of God to guide them, a wisdom that is far more superior than the world’s wisdom!

Proverbs 9:10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding/insight/good judgement.

What does this mean and how does it influence the way we act at work?

1. It means working with excellence not just of skill but of character..demonstrating that a higher wisdom, not the wisdom of this world guides our lives.

James 3: 13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. 

2. It means taking serious ownership of what God has entrusted us with. Work heartily, being diligent in the service of others as a faithful steward. The principle of sowing and reaping not only applies to tithing and church, but work!  When we work like this, God will give increase and reward us. Promotion comes from Him!

1 Peter 4:10 “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace.”

This mindset gives such a powerful approach to work! I was having a conversation with my Pastor’s daughter, a university student. She was saying that so many young people are unsure and searching for their purpose but if they occupied themselves, using what they have in service to others..they will find their purpose. I thought this truly profound and had to share!

3. It also means, minding your own business. You’re there to work, not gossip and take sides. If you’re in a position of authority you will have to at times step in to solve work issues but if not, stay out of it and don’t be drawn into work conflicts unnecessarily! You will win the respect of others for your impartiality and taking the higher road. 
1 Thess  4:11-12 (NLT) 11 Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we instructed you before. 12 Then people who are not believers will respect the way you live, and you will not need to depend on others.

4. It means that although we have goals we’d like to achieve, we do not seek to “climb the ladder” by any means necessary, using people for our gain. This is worldly wisdom and the Holy Spirit won’t have it!

James 3: 14-18 But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. 15 For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. 16 For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind. 17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. 

5. It means controlling our tongues when we are cursed and badly spoken of. We firmly stand our ground without responding in the same way or stirring up confusion and bad-talking others among our workmates. When we have opportunity we use our tongues to make peace not war!

James 3:2 For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way. 18 And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.

6. It means that we understand that we represent God’s Kingdom. Our God has all dominion and His Kingdom is above all the kingdoms of this world. Don’t fear what people do or say, fear God and keep His commandments.

1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

7. Most importantly, it means that we are to bring work and our co-workers/clients before the King, our God in prayer daily. We must listen to His voice and instruction. Simply put! 1 Thess 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

Daniel faced treacherous plotting and an attempt to destroy Him by His colleagues at work (other senior officials within the government). However moving in the fear of God, he trusted God to deliver Him and maintained his posture of consistent prayer.The result? The mouth of lions was shut and Daniel was delivered. 

While we don’t face real animal lions, we often deal with human lions. Trust God to deliver to the utmost!!  You see, Daniel wasn’t just delivered but the King recognized that the God he served and His Kingdom was superior and more powerful than all other Kingdoms! Powerful testimony and ultimately what God wants!

So, what are some challenges you’ve faced or are currently facing at work? How have you seen the fear of God and His wisdom on display in the situation? Leave us a message and let us know! 

Have a wonderful weekend!

By Carol Jackson

His Prescribed Path

1484317321298_imageJesus said:
Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
For My yoke is easy and My burden is light. (Matt 11:29-30)

Compared to the old testament law, the new covenant in Christ was easy. He asked us to do away with following the law that lead to death and to follow Him to eternal life.

In this new covenant we have:

  • grace (Yes!!!)
  • forgiveness of sins
  • no condemnation
  • adoption as sons (and daughters)
  • freedom from bondage
  • joy instead of mourning,
  • healing and restoration of our souls
  • an intimate relationship with God the father
  • the knowledge that He chose us from the earth’s founding
  • redemption because Christ shed His blood
  • faith in the almighty God and access to all His promises
  • healing through His suffering
  • freedom to come boldly before His throne of grace and mercy

And so much more. It’s definitely not an exhaustive list.

What I had to realise for myself, is that even though His promises are freely given, there is still a yoke that I have to choose to take. Even though the yoke is easy, it’s still a yoke. It will, once I surrender, provide direction, restrict what I can and cannot do, require my obedience and cooperation, lead me in a preordained path and lead me away from my previous life. With it, God can pull me away from danger and cause me to learn His ways and grow.

How does this look in everyday life?

  • Adherence to His word
  • Being silent when we would want to speak
  • Putting others before ourselves
  • Being open to His correction and discipline
  • Loving when we would rather not
  • Forgiving when someone has wronged you, hurt you and disregarded you; whether intentionally or unintentionally
  • Choosing not to live by the standards of the world but making sure Jesus is at the center of all our decisions
  • Waiting when we would rather go and listening even when we think we know the answer
  • Relying on faith when all we see before us is unknown, scary looking stuff
  • Holding onto His promises knowing that His word will never change

This list is also not exhaustive.

When we make the decision to put our lives in His hands, we can’t take it back when it suits us or ignore the things we don’t like and accept the things which we do like. God will not force His yoke on us but He encourages us to take it.

Picture Him with the yoke in His out stretched hand, saying “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me.” Then he tells us about Himself, “I am gentle and lowly in heart.” Not a harsh task master. Then comes His promise to us, “You will find rest for your souls.” A place of total surrender and peace. Our future is assured.

Thank you Lord that You determine my path and the stages and seasons of my life.  Thank you that in You I am home and experience overwhelming peace. You have been my guide and my teacher and I desire to be continually shaped and moulded by You. Thank you for joy that bubbles up when I consider Your ways and the rest that comes from knowing that You are in charge. May all that You have given me cause me to give back to others and to showcase Your amazing love. In the name of Jesus, amen.

By Marisse Cropper

 

New Year’s…….

sunrise

and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.             Ephesians 4:24

 

 

Well, it’s 2017.

Already.

I can still remember the fuss over Y2K. When everything was going to shut down and there would be blackouts and planes would fall from the sky. That, was 17 years ago.  So much has happened in that 17 years and yet it seems as though so little time has passed.

First of all, I would like to express how grateful I am to our one and only magnificent God, for being His ever faithful consistent self.  All the ups and downs have all led right back to Him cause He never moves. When He says that He will never leave or forsake, He means it. It is His promise and it will stand.

Yet, we shift and move and determine that we know what’s right and that whatever we thought, was a good idea that we had to try. I don’t know about you but I imagine that God frequently looks at me and shakes His head, maybe exasperated but patiently waiting for me to see what He was showing me all along.

We also make these determinations. “I will be better at this” or ” I need to do more of that”. Is that so? Have you asked God His opinion on that?

All around us, are people making their lists of resolutions. ” This is the year.”, they say. “It will be different this time.” We celebrate with those who make it but often times most don’t.

Why? Because,

True transformation is based on association. Not behaviour modification. Dave Cropper

As members of the body of Christ, we do not try to be perfect after the flesh; to seek a perfection brought on by the standards of those around us. It’s not about doing what seems right but doing what God wants for us. It’s about seeking His face for the way that He knows is right. Our change, our transformation comes when we are in Him and when we rely on His grace. Not our limited human effort.

Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.                              2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV) (emphasis mine)

Change does not come from afar or by a wish and a hope. We have to be in Him and with Him. Constantly. Daily. Leading to all things becoming new. That is a truth of God. Believe it. Hold on to it.

What we build by ourselves and with our own plans, will fail.

Let go of our ways and our thoughts and what we think is right.

Unless the Lord builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; Unless the Lord guards the city, The watchman stays awake in vain.     Psalm 127:1 (NKJV)

Unless God is the midst of every part of our lives, we act in vain. Why waste energy doing the wrong thing? Discovering the right way requires us to ask, seek and knock.

 

Lord, I know that you have a plan made specifically for me and You know what must be done to achieve it. Show me the direction which you choose and what I must do. Thank you for Your patient guidance and everlasting grace.  I will trust in you and follow your way for me because only in you am I made new. In the name of Jesus, amen.

By Marisse Cropper

Faith facts

Hi friends, it’s been one of those weeks! Suddenly so many things seem to be in turmoil and as a friend of mine said..the enemy is good at making even things that are blessings seem to be curses! When we face challenges, we may feel discouraged, we may feel overwhelmed but we must never ever let go of faith. Faith helps us meet life’s circumstances with certainty and affirmation that God has supreme control of the outcome..so let’s look at eight encouraging faith facts. I pray that this short study will encourage you as it has me.

1. Faith is the shield that protects us from the potentially damaging effects of the various onslaughts we face. Depression, anger, fear and anxiety come as a natural response to oppressive circumstances but we can flip the switch, pick up the shield of faith and push them back! Better yet, don’t ever put it down! Be always ready!2. Faithfulness is a fruit of the Spirit. You see it’s not about sheer willpower, if the Spirit of God lives in you Faith is already there ready for use! Oranges can’t come from apple trees. You’ve got faith!!!3. Faith must be nourished. How? By focusing on God’s word. If your soul is aching or burdened.. read and internalize faith-building scriptures each day. Doing this along with prayer, worship and fellowship..will be like medicine to remedy our aching souls. Ro 10:174. Workout your faith!! Exercise and build your faith muscles during hard times. Our actions should speak to the fact that we have faith. Don’t let apathy move in. Get up and work in Faith! No money for that big project yet? Start small with what you have. With prayer and faith, work your mustard seed and watch God grow it into a tree!5. Faith attracts God! While you’re dealing with a seemingly insurmountable task or challenge..work at it with all your heart towards God. God loves to see faith and He rewards it! 6. In the end you will shine!!! So work with endurance! Work through it knowing that whatever happens, God will bring you through as beautiful and refined like gold. Don’t let discouragement and depression win.  Job 23:107. Our faith is valuable! So much more than just temporal, so much more than just something to help us cope with circumstances this side of heaven. It is so valuable that it has eternal weight and glory! 

8. Faith leads us into to godly rest where even though we work, we do not strive to make things happen or to bring about the outcome we desire! When we believe, we can rest. Rest in the fact that God has this! He will provide, He will see that the outcome is for good. As the word says, let us make every effort to enter His rest! Faith leads us to rest! Heb 4I don’t know what you’re facing but God wants you to know that He sees and honors your faith. So be encouraged, surrender the outcome to God and raise up your shield of faith! Have a great weekend.

By Carol-angel Jackson

(Click photos for photo sources)

8 Tips To Regaining Your Momentum

Greetings everyone!

Today we have a guest, Dave Cropper, contributing to the site and sharing with us a word of encouragment from the Lord.

Be blessed in knowing that God will never be far from your side.


Have you become discouraged or lost your way in your walk with the Lord? Similarly, have you been feeling burdened by the pursuit of obedience to what the Lord is requiring of you in this season?

I’ve been there and here’s some advice:

1. Get Help

You are not in this alone. All champions need help along the journey, maybe you think you can figure things out on your own but consider this. In the multitude of counsel there is safety.

2. It’s time for seeking prayer.

The Lord knows exactly what you need before you even approach him in prayer, however only those that seek will find, those that ask will be given and those that knock will doors be opened to.

3. Go back to your last instructions from the Lord.

Incomplete assignments have a way of tormenting your soul if you allow them to. If you know where you stopped along the way, get back in there. Be strong. Pick back up the plough and begin to push again. Remember that we earnestly contend for the faith.

4. Pluralize your battle strategy.

When Peter was locked in prison, the church was mobilized to come together to pray for his release. Find a community of believers in an assembly that will stand with you in prayer and that have your back in tough times. Also, where two or three are gathered, He is in the midst. We all need corporate prayer to multiply the power of our intercession.

5. Don’t forget that you have an enemy.

Our walk is a battle. It makes us tough when we fight and resilient when we overcome. No one ever became an overcomer without having an enemy to overcome. We wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities and powers. Overcome your failures and dispel that discouragement today.

6. Finish your race.

The race is not for the swift but for those that endure to the end. Remember this race is personalized; tailor made for you by the Lord. You are not in competition against anyone. You are racing against time. Though you do not know the moment of your last breath we can understand our times and seasons. So get back in the race, understand the specific urgency of the season and pace yourself accordingly.

7. Unforgiveness and guilt are the heaviest burdens.

Forgive yourself for your mistakes and forgive those that have wronged you because He has and will forgive us if we fall. Remember there is no condemnation for those that are in Christ Jesus. You have been set free from the law of sin and death. The pity party of guilt has lost its DJ, so stop dancing to a tune that’s not playing.

8. Re-Activate your Praise.

Praise and worship change atmospheres and cause heavenly help to become mobilized. The Lord is waiting to hear you shout for joy, in the assembly and in your private time. Praise changes your sight and elevates your perspective. There are more working for us than those that are against us.

This post was not meant to identity with your sorrows but rather to equip you with the strategy and understanding of how to get moving again.
Please share this with those around you. You never know who might need this.

So get back in there champion!
Your victory matters.

‪#‎kingdomadvance‬ ‪#‎legacyworldwide‬

Who Are You???

IMG_1601

“God is not calling you to an uncertain future. Let the discovery of your identity be an adventure.”

If you were to try and imagine a stranger, someone that you had never met, you would not be able to do it. Too many unknown variables. Sounds strange right.

The person that God is calling you to be is someone that you have never met. Thus you have no frame of reference for imagining this person.

When you meet someone for the first time, more than likely, you put your best foot forward because you expect an amicable meeting. As you do not know the person, you are unable to judge them on an unknown past. It is a clean slate. You cannot form opinions based on who they are now or what they may have done in the past because you do not know.

For the new person that God wants us to become, we must also do just that. We tend to let past experiences or current actions taint the image of a future self. This results in the attitude of “Nope. Not me. I can’t do that.” or “Are you sure?”

Paul wrote that we are to forget the past and be drawn forward by the new future (Phil 3:13 -14); that higher calling.  Christ says that in Him we are a NEW creation (2 Cor 5:17): recently made, fresh, recent, unused, unworn, of a new kind, unprecedented, novel, uncommon, unheard of. (ALL WOW and ALL YOU!!!)

Let discovery of the new with God be an adventure. You CAN be what He wants you to be and do what He asks of you.

This new person is unveiled over time. It’s not like going from inside to outside. One minute here and the next, there. It is a journey. It may not happen as quickly as you might like. There will be struggles and tests and victories and the peace of God to over shadow it all.

Our cooperation is a determining factor in the length of the journey.

You may have heard the still small voice of the Holy Spirit, or have a strong sense from the Word or have been given a prophetic word regarding the plans that God has for you.

You may even have set out on this journey all bright eyed and bushy tailed only to face falls, failures, disappointments, and you have to believe that God still loves you and wants the best for you.

The thing is, God has already seen that new person. He knows what they look like. He sees the strength that has been built and the faith that has been cultivated and the gifts that have been discovered. He also sees where the chains were broken and where deliverance came and where burdens fell away.

So He is not calling you to an uncertain future. He is certain that you will be that person as long as you put your trust in and walk with Him. No matter how much like a fantasy it seems.

Remember, stop trying to picture this new person and giving definitions of what they are to resemble. You have NO frame of reference. You have no idea what God will do and how he will lovingly form and shape you, once you are in His hands.

Jump in!!! Feet first!!! You know He will catch you!!! Or fly with you. Or keep you afloat.

Ok God, so what now? Where do we go? What do we do next?

He is calling you forward but in all things be sure to count the cost. God wants all of you.

So be excited; not scared.

Don’t  imagine all the ways things could go wrong cause you are not God. There is no way that you could possibly know that.

I recently learned this saying: Stop borrowing trouble; which basically means stop worrying about something that you have no idea how it will turn out.

We can be quick with our ‘what ifs’. Just trust Him and be lead.

You are not your past. Your definition comes from your future. God’s future for you. His purpose for you.

Remember :

Don’t doubt Him. God knows the plans He has for you –  Jer 29:11

Don’t let the fear of failing stop you from moving. You may fall 7 times – Prov 24:16, Psa 37:23-24

Don’t think you know it all. No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him – Isa 64:4; 1 Cor 2:9

Don’t set limits. He is able to do far more abundantly beyond what we ask or thinkEph 3:20, Isa 55:8-9

Don’t try to do it in your own strength. Humble yourself under His mighty hand and in due time He will lift you up – 1 Pet 5:6-7

 

My prayer for all of us, is that we believe the infallible Word of God. The Word that speaks of who we are to God and who God has called us to be in Him. That we know that He cannot lie and that if He says something about us, then it is so. That we know that His Words are meant to comfort and not condemn, to lift us up and not pull us down; to cause us to see the truth and to desire His truth in our lives. That I know and that you know, undoubtedly, unashamedly, that He loves us beyond all measure and will reach out to us and draw us to Him. Let God – not this world, ourselves, other people – define us.

By Marisse Cropper

Choices determine destinies 

Hi readers, this has been one of the longest SK hiatuses as God has been taking us through changes and expanding us in different ways. We’ve certainly missed you and are back! 

There will be a few changes in the way we post to the SK blog. Instead of weekly, we will post as we have content. This means that you may receive something weekly, bi-monthly or once a month. If once a month, we promise it will be worth the wait 😀. 

We will also be adding short motivational videos from time to time as well as content from some of our male leaders. Thanks for sticking with us! 

So today..here’s a repost from Girlfriends in God that’s a kick in the rear for those of us who let fear hold us back from using the gifts God has given us and multiplying it for His Glory!! 

Sometimes God will put you in a dry place to expand your faith and cause you to use what He has placed in your hands to produce something wonderful, life changing and even income earning   to serve your family and others! So let’s go! Let’s become producers, Not just consumers!! 

Reposted from Sharon Jaynes of GiG

Friend to Friend

One day Jesus told a parable to a group of listeners. We’ve come to know it as the Parable of the Talents, but it is really more the Parable of the Three Choices. Jesus was explaining what the kingdom of heaven would be like in common terms.

For it is just like a man about to go on a journey, who called his own slaves and entrusted his possessions to them. To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and he went on his journey. Immediately the one who had received the five talents went and traded with them, and gained five more talents. In the same manner the one who had received the two talents gained two more. But he who received the one talent went away, and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money. (Matthew 25:14-18)

When the master returned home, he was well please with the two servants who had invested and doubled their talents, but he was furious with the one who hid his one talent in the ground.

You wicked, lazy slave, you knew that I reap where I did not sow and gather where I scattered no seed. Then you ought to have put my money in the bank, and on my arrival I would have received my money back with interest. Therefore take away the talent from him, and give it to the one who has the ten talents’ (Matt. 25:26).

This story gives me chills every time I read it. For you see, God has given each and every one of us gifts . . . gifts that He has purposed for us to use, invest, and multiply. And I’m not just talking about money, but gifts in our inner being. He has given you talents and abilities that He expects you to use to further the kingdom and minister to others.

So what kept the servant with one talent from doing so? Fear. Giving into fear prevented him from investing what he had. I think the master would have been more pleased if the servant had said, “Lord, I invested the talent and unfortunately lost it all.” At least he would have tried. At least he would have made some effort. But the master saw him as evil and lazy.Fear makes us lazy. Think about that a minute. A fearful person does little.

Moving forward despite the fear gets the spiritual couch potato out from under the afghan and into the life she was meant to live.

So here’s what I want us to think about today: Are we investing the gifts and talents that God has given us, or are we hiding them because of fear.
I don’t know about you, but I want to invest all I have and live bold. We’re going to pick back up on this in my next devotion, but for now, let’s ponder which servant we want to be.

Let’s Pray: Lord, thank You for entrusting me with gifts and talents. Sometimes I’m not sure what they are, but I pray that You will make them clear to me. Help me to be brave and share the talents that You have given me with others. I want to invest in other people and multiply the fruit in Your kingdom. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Now It’s Your Turn
Read Matthew 25:14-30 in your own Bible. Which servant do you resemble the most? Which servant do you want to resemble most? How did the servants’ choices determine their destinies?

Here is a quote from Take Hold of the Faith You Long For: You either show fear the door, or it will bolt the lock to keep you out of the places God has prepared for you to go and do all that He has planned for you to do. Fear has no choice but to leave the premises when you stand on the promises of God and say, “You are not welcome here.”

What area of your life do you need to “show fear the door?”

Have a great, productive day all!! Your friends at Sisters’ Keeper!