Wednesday, August 31, 2016
“Wherever, Whenever, However”
By Zach Wood
Colossians 3:23-24 NIV
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
We just got done a couple weeks ago watching Olympians from all over the globe compete in the Olympics. I was and always am amazed to watch the talent and abilities of all participants who perform. It is fascinating to watch them do what they do at such high precision. I often explain to my daughter, Jayda, that these Olympians practice and practice and practice. They practice so much to prepare for these games ahead of time. So much preparation, more than we realize, goes into preparing. They work so hard.
What I think about with these athletes is how much they prepare off the camera when most people don’t see them. They are practicing for hours, days, weeks, years. So much commitment goes into their dedication to be the best they can be. Their attitude and ability can take them very far. They know they need to be on their game at all times. They need to watch their diet, their lifestyle and more. They must be totally dedicated and committed to preparing and keep their focus.
The Apostle Paul encourages us that no matter where we are, no matter what we are doing, we need to do our very best however we can. Just like the participants in the Olympics train and train and train, we must realize we are also in a training mode each and every day as we continue to learn, focus and rely on Christ to be our lead. No matter where we are, we need to be on our best behavior and be doing the absolute best we can in servant hood. Are we as dedicated in our walk with God as these athletes are in their determination to continue moving forward?
One thing I really enjoy is when we see and hear participants giving glory to God for their talent and abilities. That is so awesome! We need that same attitude as we strive to serve God each and every day. We need to be doing our best wherever, whenever and however we can. Living each moment of each day doing our very, very best to serve God.
It is imperative that we focus on giving our absolute best in our service to God, no matter where we are and what we are doing. Why would we give Him anything less than our best? Will we mess up? Of course! But, we get back up and press on! Remember, we are ultimately working for the Lord, not for man. Let us give Him our best, wherever, whenever and however!
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
By Zach Wood
Matthew 7:24-27 NIV
Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.
Last week, as I was out on my afternoon walk break at work, I was thinking of all the work that goes into not only my company, but with companies in general all over the world. Most people in companies work very hard to make things right in what they do. No matter what work environment, people work hard to crunch numbers and they spend endless hours making invoice numbers match purchase orders. There is often so much work making absolutely sure that our work is completely up to par.
As I continued to think about all the hard work that we put into our jobs, I could not help but be heartbroken to ask myself why I don’t put as much effort into my relationship with Christ. I am ashamed to think of how much effort I will put into my job to make sure my numbers match, but then slack in giving my utmost to God. I often put in so much energy and effort into doing the best I can for my employer, but then I have the mentality of “It’s good enough” into my relationship and effort to serve God.
I often wonder how it must break God’s heart for Him to look down upon us, the children He created, and see us working so hard at building our earthly house upon sand instead of building a solid house on a firm rock foundation. Who in their right mind would even think of building a house on sand and expecting that to last? We wouldn’t even consider just throwing up some wood, pounding a few nails into it and calling it “good”. A house is built with wisdom of those who know how to build a house. We pay people good money to build houses with firm foundations.
God wants us to be wise in how we live our lives. Are we living our lives by focusing on how we are living for Him or are we more concerned about the earthly pursuits we have? Don’t get me wrong, it’s imperative that we do our best in all we do in life. But what I am saying is that we often pour so much more time and effort into what we do here on earth that we spend less time actually building wisely into our families, our spiritual lives and investing time in other people’s lives. We do a little for God and we say, “Eh, it’s good enough”.
God sent Jesus Christ to die for us. He gave his best. We owe it to Him to live our lives wisely and give Him our very best. Building wisely.
Monday, August 8, 2016
“The Need To Stand Out”
By Zach Wood
You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Whether we are driving down the road, taking a walk, going to run errands or visiting with friends and family, we always seem to find something that really catches our attention. Whether it be a sign on the road, a landmark that is decorated or someone dressed in a costume, it catches our attention. We all have something that easily catches our attention and draws our concentration away from everything else.
Many times while we are driving to different places around town or out of town, we will see one of those old time cars drive by. We quickly get our girl’s attention and we all gaze upon the stylish looking vehicle. It’s fun to see those cars.
There are so many things that look different that seem to catch our attention. Why is that? Because it’s something that looks different. It stands out. It’s easily noticeable. It draws our attention away from everything else. We are captivated by what we see. It brings a smile to our face and a sense of awe to our senses to see something that is really cool looking. It’s out of the norm. It’s unique.
There are certain things that stand out and draw attention just because they are different. They’re not normal sightings. They capture attention.
I can’t help but think this is exactly how Jesus wants us to be in our life with Christ. We shouldn’t be like the rest of the crowd. We shouldn’t be just like everyone else. When people see us walk through the crowd, when they see us interacting with others, they should see something different and very unique. They shouldn’t be the same old, same old. When they look at us, they should notice something different and out of the ordinary.
With Christ living in us, we should shine a light for others to see. What we do should stand out from the rest of the world. God has called us to be unique and to stand out from the rest. There should be something very different about the way we live our life. In this world we live in today, there is a great need to stand out and be different than the rest. God calls us to stand out and shine our light so that others know there is something different. That in turn will eventually compel them to ask what is so different about us.
God needs us to stand out. Are we willing to be different?