BETA

Facts of the Matter

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

Archive for February, 1996

Wednesday, February 28, 1996

“WHOLE HEARTEDNESS” – Giving it 110% – A rare commodity today in our National slide into mediocrity.

Good Morning!

The Scriptures allow us no such quarter.  Consider Paul’s admonition to young Timothy+:

Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you

Literally: –  Don’t be careless with it
  –  Don’t disregard it
  –  Don’t make light of it.

Reminiscent,  of Jesus’ admonition regarding the talents:  Use it  and I will multiply it;  hide it and I will take it away from you. (Matt 25:15 – 30)

Take pains with these things

Literally:  –  Meditate upon them

 –  Revolve them  in your mind

Ponder these truths with the intention of applying them to your life.

Give Thyself wholly to them

Literally:  –  Agree with them

That is, don’t dance around the periphery. Jump into the water! Get committed!

Take heed

Literally:  –  Pay attention

–  Retain

Non-commitment and compromise are the operative values in the corridors of  today’s business, political  and educational  sophistry.

No so, the disciple of Jesus. The cost of Calvary demands nothing less than “my soul, my life, my all.”

 

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, February 21, 1996

WHAT IS TO BE THE BOTTOM LINE IN OUR MINISTRY TO OTHERS?

Good Morning!

Consider this:

But the goal of our instructions is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.”  (I Tim. 1:5)

#1  –  “LOVE FROM A PURE HEART

That is:  Simply loving people with no strings attached.

While they were butchering Jesus on a pole, He cried, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Lk.23:34). 

That is pure love.  And that is how we are to love others.

#2  –  “LOVE FROM A CLEAR CONSCIENCE

That is:  Simply ministering to people out of pure motives: Guilt free.   Only possible if :

  • I understand what God wants me to do: My calling.
  • I accept my God-given limitations in fulfilling that calling: My humanity.
  • I appropriate the unconditional grace of God for my life and calling: My resources.

“…Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.”  (II Tim. 2:1)

“Therefore, since we have this ministry, we have received  mercy…”  (II Cor. 4:1)

#3  –  “ LOVE FROM A SINCERE FAITH

That is:  Simply loving people without hypocrisy.  (Rom. 12:9a)

Judas’ kiss in betraying Christ is illustrative of hypocritical love.  (Lk. 22:47, 48)

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, February 14, 1996

ON BRINGING JESUS CHRIST INTO THE MARKETPLACE

Good Morning!

“I simply argue that the cross should be raised at the center of the marketplace as well as on the steeple of the church. 

“I am recovering the claim that Jesus was not crucified between two candles, but on a cross between two thieves;

“On the town’s garbage heap; at a crossroad, so cosmopolitan they had to write His title in Hebrew and Latin and Greek…

“At the kind of a place where cynics talk smut, and thieves curse, and soldiers gamble. 

“Because that is where He died. 

“And that is what He died for. 

“And that is what He died about. 

That is where church-men ought be and what church-men ought to be about.”+  

“‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’  How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?  And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written,How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!’”  (Rom. 10:13-15)

QUESTION:  DO YOU HAVE BEAUTIFUL FEET?

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

Wednesday, February 7, 1996

TITILLATION…ACQUIESCENCE …ANGUISH

Good Morning!

“When the young husband picked up his friend’s pretty wife in the taxi one block from her townhouse for their first lunch together, in a hotel dining room with a room key  in his pocket, midtown traffic gridlocked and was abruptly still…

A prophetic voice spoke in his mind’s ear despite his pulse’s erotic thudding:

‘The misery you undertake this afternoon will accompany you to the ends of your lives.’

She knew what she did, when she agreed to this lunch, although she would not admit it;

And you’ve constructed your playlet  a thousand  times: cocktails, an omelet, wine;

The revelation of a room key; the elevator rising…

The skin flushed, the door fumbled at, the handbag dropped; the first kiss…nakedness;

Endorphins followed by endearments; a brief nap; another fit…

Arrangements for another encounter, the taxi back, and the furtive kiss of good-bye.

Then by turn: tears, treachery, anger, betrayal; marriages and houses destroyed;

Small children abandoned and inconsolable, their foursquare estates disestablished forever;

The  unreadable advocates; the wretchedness of passion outworn;

Anguished nights… essayed in loneliness…

Hours with sons and daughters studious always to maintain distrust;

The daily desire to die and the daily agony of the requirement to survive, until only the quarrel endures….”+

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life..” (Gal. 6:7,8)

 

My prayer is that you are having a great week!