BETA

Facts of the Matter

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

Archive for June, 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Good Morning!

“Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life .” (Prov. 4:23a)

Ah, the “heart“…that is where our problems lie, is it not?

The heart here represents your ethical center, your intellectual center: What you think, what is going on with your will, your perceptions of yourself and your knowledge of God.

The condition of your heart is critical because what goes on there determines the course of your life.

So…guard what is happening in your heart with all diligence.

Picture your physical heart pumping blood through the arteries to the extremities of the body. The health of the heart determines the health of the body.

So it is with your spiritual heart. What goes on there affects all the extremities of your life.

Want to keep your heart pure? Than check your actions in three areas:

(1) Your speech:

Put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put devious lips far from you .” (Prov. 4:24)

QUESTION : Is your speech truthful? Straightforward?…Or misleading?

(2) Your eyes:

Let your eyes look directly ahead, and let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you .” (Prov. 4:25)

QUESTION : Are you looking only at things that enhance your mind and your morals? …Or do you have wandering eyes?

(3) Your path:

Watch the path of your feet and all your ways will be established. Do not turn to the right nor to the left; turn your foot from evil .” (Prov. 4:26)

QUESTION : Are you only going to places that keep your heart pure…Or are you

drifting into questionable areas?

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*Originally dated May 31st, 1995

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Good Morning!

“Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life .” (Prov. 4:23a)

Ah, the “heart“…that is where our problems lie, is it not?

The heart here represents your ethical center, your intellectual center: What you think, what is going on with your will, your perceptions of yourself and your knowledge of God.

The condition of your heart is critical because what goes on there determines the course of your life.

So…guard what is happening in your heart with all diligence.

Picture your physical heart pumping blood through the arteries to the extremities of the body. The health of the heart determines the health of the body.

So it is with your spiritual heart. What goes on there affects all the extremities of your life.

Want to keep your heart pure? Than check your actions in three areas:

(1) Your speech:

Put away from you a deceitful mouth, and put devious lips far from you .” (Prov. 4:24)

QUESTION : Is your speech truthful? Straightforward?…Or misleading?

(2) Your eyes:

Let your eyes look directly ahead, and let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you .” (Prov. 4:25)

QUESTION : Are you looking only at things that enhance your mind and your morals? …Or do you have wandering eyes?

(3) Your path:

Watch the path of your feet and all your ways will be established. Do not turn to the right nor to the left; turn your foot from evil .” (Prov. 4:26)

QUESTION : Are you only going to places that keep your heart pure…Or are you

drifting into questionable areas?

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*Originally dated May 31st, 1995

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

17_06_21

ONE OF LIFE’S ILLUSIONS:

Good Morning!

Recently I relaxed in the lobby of one of Asia’s loveliest hotels located in a country classified as “Third World.” As chauffeured Mercedes and Jaguars cruised to the entrance, the beautiful and the privileged alighted to the gracious welcome of white-gloved hotel personnel.

Later, as I was being chauffeured to the airport in an air conditioned automobile, I gazed out the window and noticed a bent over old man, cane in hand, laboring under the blaring sun as he shouldered a heavy backpack up a steep series of steps that would eventually take him across the highway upon which I was traveling.

I could not help but think, “What inequity! How unfair! Why the disparity?”

…Until I recalled Jesus’ teaching:

“Many who are first will be last; and the last, first.” (Matt. 19:30)

About the parable of the rich man and Lazarus: In eternity the fellow previously living in poverty and sickness on earth now enjoys heaven’s bliss with Abraham, while the man rich now languishes in Hell. (Lk. 16:19-31).

“Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked…” (Rev. 3:17)

As you and I enjoy His bounty in our “island” of affluence, surrounded by the world’s impoverished, it behooves us to remember that,

“…Everyone who has been given much, much shall much be required…” (Lk. 12:48)

May God help us amidst our “illusion” of prosperity tomaintain an eternal perspective as to thetrue riches, and of the responsibility that comes with privilege.

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*originally dated June 21st, 1995

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

17_06_21

ONE OF LIFE’S ILLUSIONS:

Good Morning!

Recently I relaxed in the lobby of one of Asia’s loveliest hotels located in a country classified as “Third World.” As chauffeured Mercedes and Jaguars cruised to the entrance, the beautiful and the privileged alighted to the gracious welcome of white-gloved hotel personnel.

Later, as I was being chauffeured to the airport in an air conditioned automobile, I gazed out the window and noticed a bent over old man, cane in hand, laboring under the blaring sun as he shouldered a heavy backpack up a steep series of steps that would eventually take him across the highway upon which I was traveling.

I could not help but think, “What inequity! How unfair! Why the disparity?”

…Until I recalled Jesus’ teaching:

“Many who are first will be last; and the last, first.” (Matt. 19:30)

About the parable of the rich man and Lazarus: In eternity the fellow previously living in poverty and sickness on earth now enjoys heaven’s bliss with Abraham, while the man rich now languishes in Hell. (Lk. 16:19-31).

“Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked…” (Rev. 3:17)

As you and I enjoy His bounty in our “island” of affluence, surrounded by the world’s impoverished, it behooves us to remember that,

“…Everyone who has been given much, much shall much be required…” (Lk. 12:48)

May God help us amidst our “illusion” of prosperity tomaintain an eternal perspective as to thetrue riches, and of the responsibility that comes with privilege.

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*originally dated June 21st, 1995

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

17_06_14

ENTANGLEMENTS:

Good Morning!

“No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life…” (II Tim. 2:4)

One way to become entangled is by guaranteeing a note (debt) for another person: Co-signing.

The Scriptures are unequivocal in condemning this practice:

“He who puts up security for another will surely suffer, but whoever refuses…is safe.”

(Prov.11:15)

“A man lacking in judgment…puts up security for his neighbor.” (Prov. 17:18)

“Do not be a man who…puts up security for debts.” (Prov. 22:26)

Over the years, I have watched innumerable friends in Christ languish under the burden of fulfilling the legal/financial obligations from a note.

Usually these notes are signed when the business climate is good, optimism is high, and mutual friendships prevail. Idealism, enthusiasm and good will are in the air.

In time however, the business climate often sours, and financial pressures mount. Circumstances change. And people begin to fend for themselves.

AND IT IS YOU WHO ENDS UP HOLDING THE BAG!

When the pressure is on, rare is the person who will choose Biblical principles over personal survival :

“…Who swears to his own hurt and does not change.” (e.g. holds to his word when it is to his

disadvantage). (Psa. 15:4b)

If you happen to be co-signed, you may want to take Solomon’s advice to heart :

“My son, if you have put up security for your neighbor, if you have struck hands in pledge for another, if you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth, then do this, my son, to free yourself, since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands: Go and humble yourself; press your plea with your neighbor! Allow no sleep to your eyes, no slumber to your eyelids. Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the snare of the fowler.” (Prov. 6:1 – 5)

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*Originally dated June 28th 1995

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

17_06_14

ENTANGLEMENTS:

Good Morning!

“No soldier in active service entangles himself in the affairs of everyday life…” (II Tim. 2:4)

One way to become entangled is by guaranteeing a note (debt) for another person: Co-signing.

The Scriptures are unequivocal in condemning this practice:

“He who puts up security for another will surely suffer, but whoever refuses…is safe.”

(Prov.11:15)

“A man lacking in judgment…puts up security for his neighbor.” (Prov. 17:18)

“Do not be a man who…puts up security for debts.” (Prov. 22:26)

Over the years, I have watched innumerable friends in Christ languish under the burden of fulfilling the legal/financial obligations from a note.

Usually these notes are signed when the business climate is good, optimism is high, and mutual friendships prevail. Idealism, enthusiasm and good will are in the air.

In time however, the business climate often sours, and financial pressures mount. Circumstances change. And people begin to fend for themselves.

AND IT IS YOU WHO ENDS UP HOLDING THE BAG!

When the pressure is on, rare is the person who will choose Biblical principles over personal survival :

“…Who swears to his own hurt and does not change.” (e.g. holds to his word when it is to his

disadvantage). (Psa. 15:4b)

If you happen to be co-signed, you may want to take Solomon’s advice to heart :

“My son, if you have put up security for your neighbor, if you have struck hands in pledge for another, if you have been trapped by what you said, ensnared by the words of your mouth, then do this, my son, to free yourself, since you have fallen into your neighbor’s hands: Go and humble yourself; press your plea with your neighbor! Allow no sleep to your eyes, no slumber to your eyelids. Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the snare of the fowler.” (Prov. 6:1 – 5)

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

*Originally dated June 28th 1995

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Good Morning!

All of us carry the nails of the cross in our pocket ,” wrote Martin Luther.

How easily we crucify Him !

By subtly moving Him to the peripheral of our conversation when it is embarrassing to be identified with Christ.

By compromising His principles in business when it is to our advantage to hedge the truth.

By smugly taking credit for accomplishments that would have been impossible without His help.

While enjoying a warm and secure evening with Christ and the other disciples the night before the cross Peter declares, ” Lord, I will lay down my life for you.”+ In a matter of hours however, Peter distances himself from any association with Christ: Personal survival winning over telling and identifying with the Truth.

It is easy to promise Christ the moon when we are among His friends. The true test comes amidst times of guerrilla warfare in hostile enemy territory.

We would never physically crucify Christ. Of course. But how often do we subtly abandon Him when identifying with Him would jeopardize our peace, prosperity, or social standing?

Yes…we, like Peter “… carry the nails of the cross in our pocket.”

“Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” (Matt. 10:32-33)

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

+ John 13:37

* Originally dated July 5th 1995

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Good Morning!

All of us carry the nails of the cross in our pocket ,” wrote Martin Luther.

How easily we crucify Him !

By subtly moving Him to the peripheral of our conversation when it is embarrassing to be identified with Christ.

By compromising His principles in business when it is to our advantage to hedge the truth.

By smugly taking credit for accomplishments that would have been impossible without His help.

While enjoying a warm and secure evening with Christ and the other disciples the night before the cross Peter declares, ” Lord, I will lay down my life for you.”+ In a matter of hours however, Peter distances himself from any association with Christ: Personal survival winning over telling and identifying with the Truth.

It is easy to promise Christ the moon when we are among His friends. The true test comes amidst times of guerrilla warfare in hostile enemy territory.

We would never physically crucify Christ. Of course. But how often do we subtly abandon Him when identifying with Him would jeopardize our peace, prosperity, or social standing?

Yes…we, like Peter “… carry the nails of the cross in our pocket.”

“Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven.” (Matt. 10:32-33)

My prayer is that you are having a great week!

R. Dwight Hill

+ John 13:37

* Originally dated July 5th 1995