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Facts of the Matter

A weekly letter of encouragement and challenge to business and professional men and women

Archive for October, 1995

Wednesday, October 25, 1995

FROM WEALTHY RANCHER TO IMPOVERISHED CAVE-DWELLER – That’s the story of Lot, the nephew of Abraham. Here’s how he did it:

Good Morning!

LOT MADE THREE BAD DECISIONS:

#1  He embraced the negative values of Abraham:

Lot observed Abraham as he sacrificed Sarah to Pharaoh to save his neck. Years later, Lot also attempted to save his neck (and those of his house guests), by offering to give his daughters to the men of Sodom (Gen.12:1-12;19:4-8).

#2  He allowed himself to be overtaken by greed:

When prosperity forced Abraham and Lot to separate, Lot ravenously chose the better portion of land for himself (Gen. 13:1-11).

 #3  He loved the world’s sinful environment:

After separating from Abraham, he settled next to wicked Sodom (Gen. 13:12;19:15, 16).

LOT SUFFERED THREE NEGATIVE CONSEQUENCES:

#1  He demonstrated no confidence in God’s word:

When the angels told him to flee Sodom, he hesitated and sought a compromise (Gen. 19:16-20).

#2  He destroyed his family spiritually:

  • His sons-in-law had no respect for God’s word when spoken by him (Gen. 19:14).
  • His wife lost her life by embracing his values (Gen. 19:17, 26).
  • His daughters (who, no doubt were traumatized by his disregard for them) stooped to an incestuous relationship with him in order to preserve the family line ( 19:4-8, 32-36).

#3  He experienced the reduction of his life from rancher to an impoverished  cave-dweller  (Gen. 13:5, 6; 19:30).

Perhaps the most astonishing thing about this story is Peter’s assessment of this rancher gone awry, in referring to him as “Righteous Lot” (II Pet. 2:7).  If that isn’t the grace of God, I don’t know what is!

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, October 18, 1995

“THERE WILL BE SILENCE BEFORE THEE…” (Psalm 65:1a)

Good Morning!

S I L E N C E

A rather unfamiliar experience in today’s world.

Not much practiced.

Not much allowed in our cacophony of shrill voices, trite opinions, endless information, and the blaring of brassy music and mind-numbing media dissipation.

To be alone before God  in SILENCE is either

Frightening

or

Healing

Depending upon the condition of one’s soul.

There will be silence before Thee…”

When, in that Day, we appear before The Consuming Presence,  the righteous Lamb, slain, resurrected, and now reigning…

There will be SILENCE.  (Rev. 8:l)

For some the silence will turn to worship, adulation, fullness of joy and eternal bliss.

For the rest it will mean weeping and gnashing of teeth:  Eternal separation from all that is good, righteous and pure.  (Matt. 8:12)

Amidst the clamor and cluttering noise of our day, it behooves us to learn to live in the presence of God in SILENCE.

For it is here and only here that He will be known.

Be still and know that I am God.” (Psa 46:10a)

 

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, October 11, 1995

THE BIRTH OF A VISION

Good Morning!

God gives us the vision, then He takes us down to the valley to batter us into the shape of the vision; and it is in the valley that so many of us faint and give way.” (Oswald Chambers)

God is allowing the testing…the battering, to mold our character into His:

“Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations.

“Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience.

“But let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work, so that you may be  [people] perfectly and fully developed [with no defects], lacking in nothing.”  (Jms. 1:2 – 4 Amplified)

Observe the birthing of a calf, or the metamorphous of a moth into a butterfly. Painful. “Battering.”

The temptation is to intervene and stop the uneasy proceeding. But we need to understand God’s battering  “process” and allow it to go on to completion.

Beauty and maturity often emerge from pain:

“Let endurance and steadfastness and patience have full play and do a thorough work. So that you may be people perfectly and fully developed with no defects, lacking in nothing.”

This is God’s school in preparing you, the visionary to carry out the vision. In God’s school there are no shortcuts. The process produces the product.

So, fellow pilgrim, in your valley, don’t “faint and give way” until He completes His task in you.

 

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, October 4, 1995

WINNING PEOPLE TO CHRIST AND RUNNING A BUSINESS HAVE GREAT SIMILARITIES:

Good Morning!

Solomon, an entrepreneur of epic proportions  (Ecclesiastes, 2) and a man concerned about spiritual matters, penned five poignant observations about sowing and reaping — Principles that apply equally to business and the winning of the lost:

#1.  Get out there and sow the seed because in time you will reap the benefits of your efforts.

 “Cast your bread on the surface of the waters, for you will find it after many days.”(Ecc. 11:1)

#2.  Diversify your efforts on several fronts, as you do not know what misfortune lies ahead.

“Divide your portion to seven, or even to eight, for you do not know what mischance may occur on the earth.”  (Ecc. 11:2)

#3.  Be forever at the sowing process as you do not know which of your efforts will pay off.    

 “Sow your seed in the morning, and do not be idle in the evening, for you do not know whether morning or evening sowing will succeed, or whether both of them alike will be good.”  (Ecc 11:6)

 #4.  Don’t wait for the perfect conditions before sowing or reaping as they may never exist.

 “He who watches the wind will not sow and he who looks at the clouds will not reap.” (Ecc. 11:4)

#5.  Understand that God is behind the scenes sovereignly (though perhaps mysteriously) superintending everything.

“Just as you do not know the path of the wind and how bones are formed in the womb of the pregnant woman, so you do not know the activity of God who makes all things.” (Ecc. 11:5)

So what are we waiting for?  let’s get out there and win the lost and make business!

 

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!